The Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 9th 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 Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 9th August 2020. Cycle A

Clergy News; Recently at Shrewsbury Cathedral four Church students were ordained to the transitional Diaconate (ie on the way to the Priesthood). Last Tuesday Deacon Robert Dykes was ordained a Priest for the Diocese by Bishop Mark again at Shrewsbury Cathedral. Also recently 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 will be inevitable. Please keep all this in your prayers.

WORD FOR TODAY When you get up tomorrow make a mental note to try and count how many times during the day you are reminded of God by some person or situation. You’ll be surprised how many times it happens, and even more amazed by how God uses the most unexpected people and circumstances in order to communicate with us.

WORDS FOR WORSHIP God the Father reveals himself to us in the events of our daily life. May he show you his mercy and faithfulness. Amen. Christ comes among us in the faces of the stranger and the needy. May you see his face clearly in that of your neighbour .Amen. The Spirit leads us into the way of all truth. May your actions proclaim the justice and peace of our God. 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. During these Covid times please do not bring any food donations into the 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: TAKING THE RISK Just imagine having an appointment with God. Elijah had one. He was told to go and stand on a mountain and God would pass by. How would he know it was God? Surely it would be obvious; you’d hardly be able to miss God’s arrival! So when the mighty wind blew up a gale, this must be God. Not quite! Then a rumbling earthquake. No such luck! Finally a huge crackling fire. Still nothing! Surely this gentle breeze can’t be God? But it was, and Elijah covered his face with his cloak. It’s amazing what creatures of habit we allow ourselves to become. We get into a rut and feel quite comfortable there. And this is never as true as with the way we relate to God. We tend to pigeonhole God to fit into our way of thinking and we’re slow to see God at work when it doesn’t seem to fit our pattern. Maybe that’s why religious people are often caricatured as narrow-minded and blinkered, as conservatives who don’t want things to change. But, as Elijah found out, God is not predictable. God is not inviting us to a boring routine of religion, but to an adventure in faith, a challenge to the way we live. And just as Elijah presumed he knew what God would be like, so too we have grown used to not expecting God to ask much of us. In today’s gospel Peter thought Jesus was just a ghost and he demanded proof before accepting that it was really his Master on the sea. But in order to find out, Peter had to take the terrifying step of trying to walk on water. Only if he was prepared to trust in something bigger than himself could he stay afloat. If our religion becomes as comfortable as an old pair of favourite slippers then we can be sure we’re missing out on God’s challenge to us. Faith is dynamic and God’s call is vibrant and energetic. God always asks us to take that step into uncertainty, to go beyond where we’d naturally settle down, and if we stay within our own comfort zone then we’re not where God is asking us to go. Our liturgy today invites us to look around and see whether we’re not missing out on a much bigger adventure than we’re used to. We may find it a challenge but that’s what God’s put us here for!

Nineteenth Sunday 9th 5.00pm
11.00am Ints Margaret Ellis
Ints Mary & William Halpin
St Luke’s Parish
Monday 10th
Tuesday 11th 9.15am Ints Murray Family
Wednesday 12th
Thursday 13th 7.00pm Anne Armstrong RIP
Friday 14th
Saturday 15th
Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 16th 5.00pm
11.00am Fr Frank Rice 1st Anniversary
Ints Dot & Wilf Humphrey
St Luke’s Parish

It’s wonderful to see so many parishioners coming back to Mass in our safe and beautiful Church!(if you haven’t already done so why not give it a try)
Please note the maximum number St John’s Church can hold safely with all the social distancing measures set out by HM Government is 70 persons. And that from this weekend members of the congregation must wear a face covering. Should you not have a face covering we do have a very 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 thoroughly between each opening.
Sunday Masses are somewhat different to what we experienced before lockdown, as at this present time, we are unable to have much 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 : Father Bernard 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).
Prayers for the Sick- please remember our sick and housebound parishioners in your daily prayers. If any one is in need of Holy Communion or a visit , please do let us know.
Stewarding and Cleaning ; Thank you to the stewards who have been stewarding our Masses over recent weekends and to our parish cleaning team who do such an excellent job of cleaning our Church every Tuesday after 9.15am Mass. (Thanks too to the contract cleaners who in these Covid times clean our Church at weekends) Additional stewards are very much needed please have a word with Fr Bernard over the next few days if you can help.
St John’s SVP- Thank you to our SVP members who during the Lockdown have been faithfully keeping in touch by telephone, with our sick and housebound parishioners and also with local families in need.

Next Sunday- we celebrate the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary… the readings and prayers for both Masses next weekend will be of the Feast Day and the Rosary will be prayed for all our Parish needs and intentions next Saturday at 4.30pm. (ie before 5pm Mass).

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

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 £517.50p. A basket is now placed on the table at the back of church for your Offertory donations. Your generosity to St John’s Parish during these challenging times is very much appreciated.

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