News

PARISH RE-ORGANISATION IN THE WIGAN DEANERY

The following information was circulated within the Catholic parishes of the Wigan Deanery last weekend:

"From the First Sunday of Advent 2017 (3rd December) three new parishes will be created in Wigan and one parish will remain. The present geographical parishes of Saint John, Saint Patrick and Saint William will be formed into one new parish called Saint William's: The parish will use the churches of Saint John and Saint Patrick and Father Ian O'Shea will be the Parish Priest. The present geographical parishes of Saint Cuthbert, Saint Edward and Sacred Heart will be formed into one new parish called Saint Edward's: The parish will use the churches of Sacred Heart and Saint Cuthbert and Father Aidan Kelly will be the Parish Priest and Dean. The present geographical parishes of Saint Jude and Saint Aidan will be formed into one new parish called Saint Jude and Saint Aidan's: The parish will use the churches of Saint Aidan and Saint Jude and Father John Causey will be the Parish Priest. The present geographical parish of Saint Mary will remain as a parish for the time being and Father John Johnson will remain as Parish Priest."

SUPPORTING PEOPLE WITH DEMENTIA

The Pastoral Formation Team of the Archdiocese of Liverpool have produced a small leaflet offering Ten Top Tips for Supporting People with Dementia.

Archbishop Malcolm writes: "Dementia has been around for a long time and as a diocese we have only recently become aware of how much we need to do to make people with dementia and their carers feel welcome in our community."

Please do take a copy of the leaflet home with you from church and be aware of how best we can support those who suffer from dementia so that they feel relaxed and at ease.

LATEST FROM SACRED HEART CHURCH

The new stained glass window in church is in memory of the late Elizabeth Cooke, donated by her family.

Deacon Ken wishes to thank those who sponsored his recent Trek to Iceland for Francis House Children's Hospice. To date over £1,300 has been collected with more sponsorship money still to come.

There is a shortage of church cleaners for Sacred Heart Church: If anyone would like to join the group, please see Deacon Ken. Due to a rota system, you would only be asked to clean once a month.

There is also a need for more Readers and Lay Ministers of Communion to assist at Mass, just two or three times every two months on a rota basis. Again, please see Deacon Ken if interested.

FIRST HOLY COMMUNION 2018

With the beginning of a new school year during this week, we will soon begin our preparation with those families who have children wishing to enter into a deeper commitment to the Christian Community through making their First Confession and First Holy Communion. Two Introductory Meetings will take place on Wednesday the 13th of September at 5.45pm in Holy Family School and on Thursday the 14th of September at 6.00pm in Sacred Heart School to which we invite parents of baptised Catholic children in Year Four or above to come along. Details of the Course to be followed and the commitment expected will be explained at these meetings and parents will then be free to choose if they wish this for their children before the Preparation Course begins two weeks later.

THE C.C.R.S. STUDY COURSE

The parish community, in collaboration with the home and school, has a privileged opportunity and responsibility to help all concerned to grow in their faith. This is a lifelong process. To achieve this we need to help those involved with parish catechesis to share this vision and have an adult understanding of their faith. The Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS) is designed for people who are engaged in the communication of their Catholic Faith, whether directly or indirectly. It is open to catechists, people involved in liturgical work, as well as any other interested adults. The CCRS can provide general theological knowledge and offer a better understanding of the Catholic faith. It will help participants to increase their practical application of the faith in their ministry in the Church and provide the means to accurately and effectively communicate the principles of Catholic teaching. For more details about start dates, fees and your nearest centre please visit the CCRS Website at www.brs-ccrs.org.uk or telephone 0207 901 1900

JOB VACANCIES IN THE ARCHDIOCESE OF LIVERPOOL

There are further vacancies within the Archdiocese of Liverpool: For a Senior Accountant and Head of Parish Centres based at LACE in Liverpool (35 hours per week at a salary of £58K per annum, closing date next Wednesday the 2nd of August): For a Parish Administrator based at Saint Gregory's in Lydiate (20 hours per week at £8.70 per hour, closing date next Friday the 4th of August) and a Parish Administrator based at Our Lady of the Assumption in Gateacre (15 hours per week at £8.70 per hour, closing date Friday the 11th of August). For more information, job descriptions and an application form go to www.liverpoolcatholic.org.uk and click on "Jobs"

CLERGY APPOINTMENTS

For your information, the following revision of clergy appointments within the Archdiocese of Liverpool has been announced by the Archbishop to take place over the coming weeks:

Parish Priest

Father Ian O'Shea, from Saint Joseph's, Anderton, to Saint John's and Saint Patrick's, Wigan.

Father Ian McParland, from sabbatical to Saint Margaret Mary, Liverpool

Father Grant Maddock, from Christ the King, Liverpool to Our Lady and Saint Gregory, Lydiate

Father Mark Moran, from Saint Margaret Mary, Liverpool to Holy Family, Southport

Father Philip Gregory, from Holy Family, Southport, to Saint Joseph's, Wrightington

Father John Causey, from Saint Cuthbert and Saint Edward, Wigan to Saint Jude and Saint Aidan, Wigan

Father Sean Riley, from Holy Cross, St. Helens to Christ the King and Our Lady, Liverpool

Father Liam Collister, from Saint Julie and Saint Teresa, St. Helens to OL of Walsingham, Netherton

Indian priests from the Missionary Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament

will assume the pastoral care of Holy Cross Parish, St. Helens.

Additional Responsibility

Father Francis Marsden, Saint Mary's, Chorley and now also Saint Joseph's, Anderton

Father Aidan Kelly, Sacred Heart, Wigan and now also Saint Cuthbert's and Saint Edward's, Wigan

Reduced Responsibility

Father John Johnson, Saint Mary's, Wigan (but not now Saint John's, Wigan)

Father Gerry Tuite, Saint James. Orrell (but not now Saint Joseph's, Wrightington)

Assistant Priest

Father John Poland, from further studies in Rome to Christ the King and Our Lady, Liverpool

To Retirement

Canon Pat McNally from Saint Jude's and Saint Aidan's, Wigan

Father Anthony Eagleton from OL of Walsingham, Netherton

NEW UK PRIEST WEBSITE

The National Office for Vocation has launched a new edition of the UK Priest website, which can be viewed at www.ukpriest.org. The main section is about the life of a priest and how to become a priest but other features include material for students studying the priesthood, and help for friends and family of candidates for the priesthood. Give it a view.

YOUTH SYNOD 2018 SURVEY

The Catholic Church in England and Wales is consulting with young people and those who regularly engage with them in preparation for a gathering hosted by Pope Francis in October 2018. The theme of this gathering is "Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment" and the Mega Youth Poll has already been launched for young people to tell the Church about their lives, faith and vocational discernment. But if you work with or care for young people who are aged between 13 and 29 then the Church wants to hear your view of young people today through a second survey which you can find at www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/parish-yourview

The survey should take about 10 minutes to complete, depending on whether you care for or work with young people in more than one setting. Should you have any queries, please contact synod2018@cbcew.org.uk

MARRIAGE PREPARATION FACILITATORS NEEDED

Want to be part of a friendly team helping couples create healthy marriages? The Archdiocese in partnership with Marriage Care are looking for volunteers to train as facilitators and provide engaging, interactive courses, helping couples live out the Sacrament of Marriage with the practical and spiritual tools they need.

For more information please contact: Maureen O'Brien, Co-ordinator for Marriage and Family Life, on 0151 522 1044 or email m.obrien@rcaol.co.uk or for more information about what's involved visit the Marriage Care website at www.marriagecare.org.uk

GOING INTO HOSPITAL

Under current Data Protection legislation, the Catholic Chaplaincy is not automatically informed of any Catholic patients who are admitted into hospital - either relatives or the patients themselves must ask for a visit by the chaplain. The Catholic Chaplaincy at Wigan Infirmary can be contacted on 01942 822324 and a message left to request a visit from the chaplain. In an emergency, ask the nursing staff to bleep the 24/7 on-call priest.

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick can be celebrated either in church during one of the weekday Masses or else at home before you go into hospital.

Contact Father Tony to arrange this.

YOUTH POLL: YOUR VOICE MATTERS

In 2018, Pope Francis will invite bishops and others to Rome to talk about Youth, Faith and Vocational Discernment. At this gathering they will discuss how the Catholic Church can best accompany young people in their faith and help them to hear God's call. If you are aged between 13 and 29 years old, the Catholic Church in England and Wales would like to hear from you, to hear what life is like for you, your thoughts on faith, and how you connect (or not) with the Church. To help you tell us we have created a Youth Poll that you can access at www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/parish-youth-poll. And if you're not in this age group but would like to help, please encourage the young people you know to respond to this poll by giving them the link.

ROSARIES FOR THE MISSIONS

Nearly three years ago the Catenians made an appeal for people to send unused rosary beads to the missions. Since then around 450,000 rosary beads have been sent to various mission territories around the world. They are now hoping to reach a new target of 500,000 rosary beads.

Do you have any unused rosary beads? Send them to Mr. Michael Blackburn at 164 Green Park Road, Halifax, HX3 0SP.

EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS IN LIVERPOOL DURING 2018

Archbishop Malcolm writes: "The Bishops' Conference of England and Wales has supported the proposal that a Eucharistic Congress should take place in Liverpool in 2018. The bishops have asked the Working Party to continue and progress the plans for this important moment in the life of the Church in England and Wales. This an honour for us to host the Eucharistic Congress in our archdiocese and an opportunity to deepen our faith with fellow Catholics and other Christians from across our countries. Planning is still in the early stages, but it is envisaged that it will take the form of a pilgrimage of up to 10,000 pilgrims and that it will take place in September 2018 after Pope Francis has visited Ireland. Bishop Tom Williams is the archdiocese's representative on the Working Party and he will have more information for us later in the new year."

2017 DIOCESAN YEARBOOK

Copies of the Archdiocese of Liverpool 2017 Directory are on sale from the back of each church giving up-to-date information on the parishes, clergy and organisations of the diocese plus the times of Mass in every church. Price £3.50

THE GIFT-AID SCHEME

If you pay tax on your earnings, or indeed on your pension, then you can join The Gift Aid Scheme if you're not in it already. Gift Aid allows you to maximize any donations you make to the Church so that for every £1 you give, the Tax Man will return a further 25p to us. So if, for example, you are in the habit of contributing £5 a week, then over the course of a year your total offering will be £260.00. But if you are in the Gift Aid Scheme, this would mean a total income of £325.00 to us. We have not yet received Gift Aid income from HMRC for the Tax Year 2015/2016 but in 2014/2015 our two parishes received an additional income because of the Gift Aid Scheme of £6,157 at Holy Family and £6,399 at Sacred Heart. So each 25p certainly does add up!

Some people are anxious about the privacy of the scheme. No worries at all! You are assigned an untraceable number and no one except the person who does the Gift Aid recording - not even your Parish Priest - knows which number belongs to which name. And they are sworn to secrecy! We can also gather tax relief on your very generous donations to the Retiring Collections if you use your numbered envelopes, or on any other donations you make to the Church (Mass Offerings, In Remembrance Donations, etc) - just place them in an ordinary envelope and write "Gift Aid" with your Envelope Box Number on the front.

Heartfelt thanks to those of you who do already Gift Aid your offerings - as you can see it makes a massive difference to the finances of your parish. And if you are a tax payer but not yet in the Gift-Aid scheme, then please do consider joining. If you would like to begin Gift-Aiding your weekly contributions please contact Deacon Ken at Sacred Heart or Elizabeth Fairhurst at Holy Family or just pop a note with your name, address and phone number into the collection basket saying "I want to Gift Aid!" and someone will contact you.


SACRAMENTS OF INITIATION: CHANGING BACK

Towards the end of last year, Archbishop Malcolm invited feedback from us about the order in which we celebrate the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism soon after birth and (for the last few years) Confirmation and First Holy Communion together at Primary School Year Four age. Based on the results of the feedback he has received from clergy, schools, parents and catechists, the Archbishop has decided that we should return to the previous practice of Baptism soon after birth, with First Communion and First Confession in Year Four (as now) but with Confirmation returning to Secondary School Year Nine age or above and celebrated by a bishop. So, as from next year, we shall be returning to this schedule for celebrating the Sacraments of Initiation in the parishes of the Archdiocese of Liverpool.

A new programme of preparation meetings with parents and children for First Communion (but now excluding Confirmation) will be released by the Archdiocese during the summer for use in the next School Year. Future preparation for First Communion will continue to involve parents and catechists working with the children, but parental involvement will not be expected in preparing teenagers for Confirmation.

DIVORCED OR SEPARATED?

A series of support meetings for Divorced and Separated Catholics will start in September 2016. The meetings are open to Catholics and other Christians who are divorced or separated (recently or in the past) or who are experiencing the breakdown of a marriage or a long term relationship. The small groups are informative, affirming, free and confidential and the meetings include information about practical matters and sources of help, as well as the opportunity to receive support from Catholics in a similar situation.

For more information about the dates and venue of the meetings or to book a place on them please contact Frances Trotman 0151 727 2195.

Other general enquiries about support with Family Life issues can be directed to Maureen O'Brien, Marriage and Family Life Coordinator, on 0151 522 1044 or email her at m.obrien@rcaol.co.uk

HELP WITH ADDICTIONS

Do you know of anyone suffering from addiction and needing help? Or are you yourself looking to come off drugs or alcohol and have tried everything? Cenacolo have a great success rate in helping young men and women recover from any addiction, rebuild their lives and find peace and meaning. Meetings are held every Tuesday in Liverpool City Centre from 7.00pm to 9.00pm at The Blessed Sacrament Shrine, 4 Dawson Street, Liverpool, L1 1LE.

Just come along or, if you'd like more information first telephone Margaret on 0151 342 1043 or Mary Holgate on 0151 342 4166 or Mary Conway on 07883 339980 or visit the website at www.cenacolo.org

Foundation Governors in Catholic Schools

Have you ever thought about being a foundation governor in a Catholic school?

Within the Archdiocese of Liverpool, there is a need for over 1,600 practising Catholics to support and share in the leadership of all our Catholic schools. At any one time, there are approximately 100 vacancies, some of which can be hard to fill.

If you are interested in learning more about how to serve the Church in this way, there is further information, including an application form, on the Archdiocesan website at www.liverpoolcatholic.org.uk/schools/

Alternatively you can telephone Fran Coldicutt at LACE on 0151 522 1071.

HOME FAITH STUDY ON-LINE

Sycamore (named after the kind of tree which the Gospel according to Luke says that Zacchaeus climbed to get a better glimpse of Jesus) is a new initiative presented by Father Stephen Wang, a priest of the Archdiocese of Westminster, to be used as a support tool for evangelisation and growth in faith. They are designed primarily for use in parish-led and schoolbased discussion groups, and we do hope to use them for that purpose in our parishes in the near future. The course includes ten films about various areas of faith and life, which can either be viewed online or downloaded to a PC, and can just as easily be used by an individual for home faith study or as a home retreat. Each film lasts just twenty or thirty minutes and covers and can be viewed or downloaded at www.sycamore.fm

Film 1: The search for happiness.

Film 2: Does God exist?

Film 3: Who is Jesus Christ?

Film 4: The Holy Spirit in our lives.

Film 5: Why do we need the Church?

Film 6: Can we trust the Bible and Christian Tradition?

Film 7: The gift of faith.

Film 8: The power of prayer.

Film 9: The meaning of love.

Film 10: How do I discover the purpose of my life?

FAITH-TALKS FREE ONLINE

Hundreds of talks about the Catholic Faith, Spirituality and Christian Theology have now been made available free online. The 800 recordings of course-talks, which reflect the legacy of the Second Vatican Council and were given at the Upholland Northern Institute between 1975 and 1988, have been digitised by Liverpool University and now made public. Subjects include the Scriptures (both Old and New Testament writings), the Sacraments, Moral Theology, Social Justice, Spirituality and Prayer, Community Development, and lots more.

The speakers are experts in their fields with many being familiar names such as Vincent Nichols, Brian Newns, Patrick Kelly, Derek Worlock, Ernest Sands, Charles Curran and Aelred Smith who are easy and interesting to listen to. Father Kevin Kelly, who was the Founding Director of the Upholland Northern Institute, writes: "Unitapes are a very valuable tool for anyone wanting to deepen their understanding of the faith at this momentous time. They will bring encouragement, fresh insight, and hope to many".

The talks are available free online at www.unitape.org where there is also a downloadable PDF of the catalogue of all 800 recordings. CD versions are also available at cost price, approximately £3 each.

WELCOMING A FOREIGN STUDENT

ROOM AT THE INN?

Small charity HOST is seeking friendly people who would like to learn more about other countries and cultures and share their home life with adult international students at UK universities. Young adults from many countries would love to have a short homely break and discover the real life of this country. Host Kit Millington-Hore writes: "Meeting students from around the world is hugely fulfilling and satisfying. Watching their pleasure as you introduce them to our ways of living, particularly over Christmas, is extremely rewarding." Visits can be for a day, weekend, or four days at Christmas. Offering a Christmas invitation to someone who would otherwise be alone on a University campus can make a big difference. Invitations are urgently needed from volunteer hosts, no matter their age, or how far they live from a university. To find out more, or to be put in touch with your local organiser, please visit www.hostuk.org or call 020 7739 6292.

CATHOLIC NEWSPAPERS

A good way to keep up to date about what's happening in the Church in our own country and throughout the world is to read a weekly Catholic newspaper.

Copies of The Catholic Universe and The Catholic Times are on sale from the back of each of our churches every weekend. Why not treat yourself to a one of them?

CATHOLIC CERTIFICATE IN RELIGIOUS STUDIES

The Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS) is designed for people who are engaged in the communication of their Catholic Faith, whether directly or indirectly. It is open to catechists, people involved in liturgical work and other interested adults. The CCRS can provide general theological knowledge and offer a better understanding of the Catholic faith. It will help participants to increase their practical application of the faith in their ministry in the Church. It provides the means to accurately and effectively communicate the principles of Catholic teaching.

For more details about the course, start dates, fees and your nearest centre visit the CCRS Website at www.brs-ccrs.org.uk or 0207 901 1900

SUPPORT FOR THOSE DIVORCED OR SEPARATED

Pope Francis described the Church as "The house of the Father where there is a place for everyone with all their problems." The Pastoral Formation Department of the Archdiocese of Liverpool offers help and support for those who are divorced or separated or experiencing the breakdown of a marriage or long-term relationship through a series of six weekly meetings "Recovery and Moving on after Divorce" held in Liverpool.

Individual support is also available for those who do not wish to attend group meetings and all is free and confidential.

For further information or to make a booking (essential) please contact Frances Trotman on 0151 727 2195.

EVANGELII GAUDIUM:
POPE FRANCIS ON THE JOY OF THE GOSPEL

"The Joy of the Gospel" is the title of Pope Francis' first wholly-written document to the Church which sets out his vision and the direction of his ministry as our Pope, with Gospel Joy being at its heart. Francis writes (as we would expect!) in an easily readable and almost conversational style, and with humour at times ("There are Christians whose lives seem like Lent without Easter!" ….. "Both the faithful and their ordained ministers suffer because of homilies: the laity from having to listen to them and the clergy from having to preach them!"). He also addresses more serious matters (such as the need for Christians to be Spirit-filled evangelisers) and his views on issues such as the global economy and poverty ("The Social Dimension of Evangelisation"). It's well worth reading (some would say it should even be compulsory for all Catholics!) and a few copies are available from the back of each of our churches: Price £4.95 The document is also available to read online free of charge at the Vatican website www.vatican.va

FOLLOWING POPE FRANCIS

The Universe Catholic Newspaper has recently been re-styled and now includes more news and topics of interest to suit all tastes, such as gardening, travel, health, finance and family matters, with all items and features having a Catholic dimension. It now also includes a regular monthly pull-out supplement "Through the Year with Pope Francis" that will expand on the papal news of the previous weeks including extracts from the pope's speeches and homilies. The Universe is on sale each week from the back of our churches priced at £1.30. Good weekly reading for every Catholic family and individuals of all ages!

WANTED: HANDYMEN AND HANDYWOMEN

We're hoping to compile a contact list of skilled persons (such as electricians, plumbers, joiners, painters, etc) who are now retired but could be called upon from time to time to see to any small jobs which may arise around Holy Family Church and Parish Hall.

If you'd like to offer yourself to be included on that list please see Cecilia Hughes or call the Parish Office (Tel. 01942 866102) between 9.30am and 11.00am on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday mornings.


Would you like to help promote CAFOD’s work in our Primary or Secondary Schools by becoming a school volunteer? No previous experience is required: All that is needed is that you can communicate confidently and effectively with children and young people to raise their awareness of global justice and overseas development.

Full training, support, and resources will be provided and please note that all volunteers have to be DBS (Disclosure & Barring Service) cleared.

Telephone Chris or James if you are interested for more information on 0151 228 4028 or email them on liverpool@cafod.org.uk.

By admin

Congratulations to Vincent Egan, a member of Sacred Heart Parish, who has been awarded the Bene Merenti Medal by Pope Francis in recognition of his long and exceptional service to the Catholic Church upon his retirement as President of the Wigan and District Catholic Men’s Society.

The award waspresented to Vincent, on behalf of the Holy Father, during a Mass at Sacred Heart Church on Tuesday 11th of March at 7.45pm

By admin

New voices are always welcome to join the choir at each of our churches, for both the 9.00am Mass at Sacred Heart Church and the 10.30am Mass at Holy Family Church. Just walk up the stairs to the choir gallery and ask for Cecilia at Holy Family or Pat at Sacred Heart. You don’t have to be another Pavarotti or Maria Callas … if you can hold a note in your head and sing it, we’d love to have you!

We would also love to have live accompaniment music to the Mass at Sacred Heart Church instead of singing to CD backing tracks, even if just on an occasional basis: So if you can play the organ or a keyboard please see Father Tony or Deacon Ken.

By admin

Want your petition to be placed at the grotto and a candle to burn for your intentions in Lourdes but you can't get there in person?

Well now you can do it via the internet! For a voluntary offering (to cover the price of the candle) you can, with a few clicks, place and light candles at the grotto along with your prayer request.

Within 24 hours an associate at the grotto will place your petition and candle at the grotto in a rack especially reserved for internet users.

Log onto the official site at www.lourdes-grotto.org (remember to click on the English language tab at the top unless you speak French!) and follow the online instructions.

By admin

We would greatly appreciate more volunteers (male and female) who could offer some of their time to help clean our two churches.

If you can give up an hour or two every couple of weeks please see

Evelyn Griffin or Deacon Ken at Sacred Heart Church

or

Rita Abbott at Holy Family Church.

Many hands make light work!

By admin