The Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2nd August 2020. Cycle A


St John the Evangelist
128 Bebington Road, New Ferry, CH62 5BJ
Diocese of Shrewsbury (reg. charity 234025)

Parish Priest: Fr Bernard Forshaw Deacon: Revd Michael Daly Phone: 0151 645 3314
Email: Websites:

The Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 2nd August 2020. Cycle A

Clergy News; Last weekend at Shrewsbury Cathedral four Church students were ordained to the transitional Diaconate (i.e. on the way to the Priesthood). On Tuesday Deacon Robert Dykes will be ordained a Priest for the Diocese by Bishop Mark again at Shrewsbury Cathedral. Last Monday Bishop Mark, having consulted the local clergy, re appointed Fr Bernard as the local Dean for Birkenhead & East Wirral and to serve as a member of the Council of Priests from Sept 2020-2023. At least three Diocesan Priests are retiring and twelve priests are on the move with more to follow and the amalgamation of some parishes. Please keep all this in your prayers.

WORD FOR TODAY After the crowd of 5,000 had had its fill of bread and fish it was not long before it was hungry again. What is the deep-down hunger that you experience? How do you try to gratify it? Does your faith satisfy your deepest desires or are you not eating enough?

WORDS FOR WORSHIP Lord Jesus, you feed the hunger of our minds and hearts :Lord, have mercy. Christ Jesus, you are the bread of life that satisfies our needs: Christ, have mercy. Lord Jesus, you invite us to the eternal banquet of heaven: Lord, have mercy. May the God of all goodness, who feeds us with the Bread of Life, strengthen us in holiness, forgive us our sins and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

Wirral Foodbank: needs your help and support more than ever, Full details of how to donate to Wirral Foodbank can be found at htpps/ People who need emergency food and support at this time can contact the Wirral Emergency Food Hub on 0151 666 5050. For the time being please do not bring any food donations to Church .

The Parish Newsletter & The Wednesday Word, which is a helpful reflection on next Sunday’s readings, are presently available as you leave Church(via the front side door). Please take a copy for yourself and anyone from your street or neighbourhood who would appreciate receiving information about St John’s Parish at this time.

If you have a notice for the bulletin please email it to the parish email address or put it through the presbytery letter box by
12 noon on Thursdays. Many thanks.

FAITH IN FOCUS: SHARING The feeding of the 5,000 has to be one of the most well known episodes in the gospels, familiar even to those with little knowledge of the life and times of Jesus. We can probably remember it from our childhood days. We know that it happened and that it was a miraculous event, but we don’t know how. We even give the story different names to emphasise different aspects: the feeding of the 5,000, the multiplication of the bread or the miracle of the loaves. But what would we like to have happened? Do we favour the idea of Jesus acting like a magician by taking a tiny amount of bread and fish and making it stretch into a huge spread? Would anyone’s life be permanently changed by that? Possibly. Would we prefer to think of it as an act whereby Jesus backed up his teaching with a practical example? Would anyone’s life be changed by that? Certainly. In a world where we’re used to hearing of earthquakes and cyclones in which thousands of people die and millions are left with scarce food and drink, today’s gospel story perhaps has a different challenge for us. Is it possible that the 5,000 played an active part in the miracle? Could it be that having heard the words of Jesus they were inspired to share rather than to think only of themselves? And today maybe we are called not simply to wonder at the miracle and then applaud, but rather to join in the miracle by the way we share with those who are hungry. We can’t simply look at the stories in the gospel as if they were only historical events that took place long ago. If we are to make Christ the miracle-worker present in our century, then we have to give “miracles” a chance. If we really took Jesus’ words to heart and responded so that the whole world had its daily bread, then the feeding of the 5,000 would happen in our lives with regularity. Jesus the miracle-worker would be present through us. So if we enjoy the miracles then we have to make sure we’re part of them today. Miracles should not be pious; they should be practical. Maybe that’s why some people call this event the miracle of sharing. Would anyone’s life be changed by that? I’ll leave it up to you…

Eighteenth Sunday 2nd 5.00pm
11.00am Ints Peggy McAllister
For the Sick & Housebound
St Luke’s Parish
Monday 3rd
Tuesday 4th 9.15am
7.00pm Ints Philip & Sara White
Wednesday 5th
Thursday 6th 10.30am Funeral Mass Jill Evans
Friday 7th
Saturday 8th
Nineteenth Sunday 9th 5.00pm
11.00am Ints Margaret Ellis
Ints Mary & William Haplin
St Luke’s Parish

It’s wonderful to see so many people coming back to Mass in our beautiful Church! Albeit faithfully following current Government Covid 19 guidelines.
The maximum number St John’s Church can hold safely with all the social distancing measures is 70 persons but in order to reach this maximum the Bishop’s Conference of England and Wales are directing that for our weekend Masses we follow HM Government ‘ 1 metre plus’ approach meaning that members of the congregation must wear a face covering. Should you not have a face covering we do have a limited number of disposable face masks in a container in the Church porch but please do bring your own with you if you can. Obviously our capacity number will go up slightly if members of the same household attend together as they can sit together. Otherwise you will only be permitted to sit on the seats marked with a blue and white poster. Please be assured that the Church is cleaned between each opening.
Sunday Masses are somewhat different to what we experienced before lockdown, as at this present time, we are unable to have singing, social distancing needs to apply in the sanctuary and particularly with the distribution of Holy Communion. I will explain the arrangement for this to you at each Mass. For the time being only I will distribute Holy Communion. Please bear with us in seeing what is best and follow instructions carefully. Remember this situation is only temporary.
A complexity to reopening our churches is how to manage those who wish to attend Mass given the maximum number allowed, how might we manage numbers of people, and ought it to be on a first come, first served basis, or ought people ‘book’ a place. None of the possibilities present an easy solution.
I think we must proceed, as we are doing, with a simple invitation to come to Mass at the times advertised and that if we reach capacity (ie over 70) we must, I am sorry to say, say that no more than 70 can enter the Church. Weather permitting Mass can be heard from the courtyard in front of the Church. The Sunday obligation was lifted at the beginning of lockdown and that still remains the case. I ask for your patience in all this.
It goes without saying that if you have any Covid 19 symptoms or if you become unwell in other ways please do not come to Church at this present time.

Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament from 10.30am-11.30am each Saturday in the main Church. All are welcome to come and pray about the present situation and for their own needs and intentions.
Sacrament of Reconciliation / Confession : I will be available for those who wish to celebrate this sacrament each Saturday from 10.45am onwards in the courtyard in front of the Church ( Confessional’s in all our Churches are currently out of use as they do not meet the social distancing requirements).
In Memorium – Please pray for the Repose of the Soul of Jill Evans of St Luke’s Parish whose Funeral Mass will be celebrated by Fr Paschal here at St John’s on Thursday at 10.30am. May she and all the Faithful Departed Rest in Peace.
The Monthly Novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Succour -resumes this Tuesday at 7pm in Church. All most welcome. This is a special time of quiet prayer and reflection. If you have not been before I recommend you attend as I am sure you will find comfort and peace.

Stewarding ; Thank you to the stewards who have continued to steward our Masses over recent weeks. Additional stewards are very much needed please have a word with Fr Bernard.
St Luke’s at St John’s
Given current Government restrictions regarding Places of Worship, St Luke’s Parish is unable to celebrate Mass in their usual settings. So for the foreseeable future Fr Paschal will celebrate an 11am Sunday Mass each week in St John’s Church. Although principally for St Luke’s Parishioners in these times of restricted numbers this Mass will be a welcome addition to St John’s usual weekend schedule (Sat 5.00pm and Sun 9.30am)Fr Paschal and St Luke’s parishioners are always welcome at St John’s.

Money Matters
Last Weekend’s Collection amounted to £506.50p. Many thanks to those parishioners who have been so faithful in their financial support of our parish during these unusual times…. using their Offertory Envelopes, pushing donations through the Presbytery letterbox and by Standing Order…. your generosity is very much appreciated. A basket is now placed on the table at the back of church for your Offertory donations.
Shrewsbury Diocesan Virtual Pilgrimage to Lourdes- It was with great sadness that back in March we realised that in these extraordinary times it would be impossible to go ahead with our annual pilgrimage to Lourdes. With this in mind we have created a Virtual Pilgrimage which includes a daily Mass led by the Bishop or a different priest associated with the Pilgrimage. As well as many regular devotions and activities that form our Pilgrimage. The programme can be downloaded from the Pilgrimage website . The Diocesan Website Or the virtual Pilgrimage website

Father Frank Rice’s First Anniversary Mass-will be celebrated here at St John’s on Saturday 15th August at 5pm. All most welcome.

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