Highlights of the Week

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK!
Below are a few interesting news items from the weekly Bulletin.  To download the full version of our latest Bulletin,  please go to our Bulletin pageThank you.

THOUGHTS FOR THE WEEKS            
We are not orphans, for there is another Advocate! 

Sometimes it is only when someone has left that we realise how close we are to them, how they have become truly part of us. Jesus speaks of His ‘leaving us’ at the Ascension - but while he truly leaves, it is only so that He can be even closer - no longer at our side, but now deep in our hearts.
The Holy Spirit, the gift of Father and Son, their togetherness and loving union, is now poured into our hearts. Because of this Spirit within, we cry out from our depths ‘Abba, Father’; we exult to shout to the world with a cry from the heart ‘Jesus is Lord’.
The Spirit is the Advocate - speaking to the Father of His daughters and sons that we are; speaking to our hearts of the Father’s immeasurable unfathomable love for you and me. The Spirit speaks for us to God, and to us for God!

MAY - THE MONTH OF MARY    It is a long and honourable tradition that the month of May is the Month of Mary. But why? Mary allowed the Holy Spirit to fill her life and re-shape her future - and she gave flesh, humanity to the Son of God. In becoming the mother of the Saviour of the World she said yes also to a unique relationship with the world He saved! Forever she now holds the whole world in her heart of prayer, interceding, bring God’s love within her to bear upon the pain and struggles of the world and its peoples. If she loves her Son, she loves the world He died for! She teaches us how to love, how to intercede, how to heal, how to walk in solidarity with a pained world, helping it to come to a new birth.

BORDERLANDS TO PUBLISH A BOOK - refugee writing and painting
Following regular creative writing, poetry and art workshops classes at Borderlands, a team is gathering them into a book to sell in bookshops across Bristol. Crowdfunding to cover the cost of printing (aim: £3000 in 4 weeks). To donate please to Chuffed.org and search ‘Borderlands’. Further info - Caroline or Margaret or contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

BORDERLANDS RECRUITING A DIRECTOR FOR THE CHARITY
Borderlands is a small but growing charity that supports refugees and asylum seekers. We are looking for a Director to head up our operations in Easton, Bristol.  The Director will lead a small team of employees and a larger team of volunteers.  The post-holder will be responsible for leading and delivering Borderlands services, raising the profile of the charity and securing its future in terms of operations, fundraising, staff and stakeholders. This is a permanent position with a salary of £31,601 per annum, pro rata for a four-day week. This is a good opportunity to help Borderlands manage the delivery of its services to those in need and to contribute to the long-term development of the charity.   To apply, please contact us at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to request an application pack. Closing date for applications to be received: 5th June 2017
 

PRIORITY DIOCESAN DATES FOR THE DIARY

[1] DIOCESAN FAMILY DAY - Saturday 1st July
Theme: ‘Living the Gift of Baptism - a Chosen Race, a Royal Priesthood, a Holy Nation’. This is a day for all the family, for all the parish together with our Diocesan Family. There are workshop on many topics, special events for the children and for our Young People. There are also special workshops for Lay Ministers of the Eucharist as part of the day. At St Brendan’s College, Saturday 1st July from 10.15am and concluding with Mass at 4.00pm. I hope many from St Nick’s will participate - we have a lot to gain and a lot to give.

[2]   DIOCESAN PILGRIMAGE TO GLASTONBURY - Sunday 9th July
Theme: ‘Mary, Mother of Divine Hope’ Bishop Declan is presiding. There will be Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in St Mary’s Church from 12 noon to 3.00pm, Sacrament of Reconciliation and Healing Prayer in Glastonbury Abbey also from 12 noon to 3.00pm, the Rosary procession at 2.15pm and the Pilgrimage Mass at 3.30pm in the Abbey grounds. A coach will leave St Nicks after 10am Mass (12 noon) - please bring a packed lunch, weather proof clothes and perhaps a folding chair/stool. The deanery is no longer providing a free coach - but the parish will and donations requested to cover the cost.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO HELP WITH MARRIAGE PREPARATION & SUPPORT

Marriage Care is a Catholic Relationship Counselling service with a great reputation. It is looking for more volunteers to help expand their services to couples.  Last year the bishops of England and Wales published Guidelines for the Preparation of Couples for Marriage encouraging parishes to support couples in their life-long journey of marriage, starting with marriage preparation.  Their recommendations followed on from Pope Francis’ reflection on marriage preparation in his Apostolic Letter ‘The Joy of Love’. Could you help Marriage Care and the Church to do more for marriage, to reach more couples who are preparing for the sacrament? Volunteers would need to commit to a three-day training course and thereafter to three days (usually Saturdays) a year delivering the Preparing Together day as part of a team.  We are also in need of volunteers to do advocacy work in some of the centres.
To learn more about Marriage Care visit www.marriagecare.org.uk.
To book a place on a marriage preparation course or for counselling call 0800 389 3801. For further information or to apply for any volunteer vacancies please contact your local Centre or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

DIOCESAN PILGRIMAGE TO LOURDES 2017     All who wish to part of the Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes between 18th to 25th August (Coach & Jumbulance leaving St Theresa’s, Filton on 17th August) are asked to contact Deacon David Wakefield on 07711834800 or email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. You can also arrange to fly by Easyjet to Toulouse.

LIVING WITH DEMENTIA - A JOURNEY OF ACCOMPANIMENT
      We are invited to share in an evening devoted to the care of our brothers and sisters suffering dementia on Tuesday 23rd May at 6.30pm to 9.00pm at St Joseph’s Home, 66 Cotham Hill, Bristol BS6 6JY. Dr Adrian Treloar, a consultant and senior lecturer in old age psychiatry will lead the evening - he is a Catholic committed to holistic care and support for those suffering dementia and those who care for them. It is a pastoral issue that our Parish Pastoral Council is increasingly discussing - I hope some of us will attend this very useful session.

PREPARING FOR THE GENERAL ELECTION    We are invited to a Bristol West Question Time event on Tuesday 23 May, 6pm to 9pm, Trinity Centre, Trinity Road. This will be a chance to hear our candidates answer tough questions about real issues facing our neighbourhood including on housing, health, education and schools, welfare, race equality, neighbourhoods and community and more. Book a place - Priority goes to people from BS5 and BS2. Booking is NOW OPEN – https://www.eventbrite.com/e/easton-and-lawrence-hill-bristol-west-question-time-tickets-34315766381

MESSAGE FROM OUR BISHOPS ABOUT THE GENERAL ELECTION

The Bishops of England and Wales are encouraging Catholics to play an active part in the General Election. While voting for any particular political party is a matter of conscience, the bishops encourage people to use their vote at this pivotal time for our nations, as we prepare to leave the European Union. The full message is printed for you to take home and reflect upon as part of your preparation to vote. Remember we are above all called to ‘Good News to the Poor’ sharing God’s ‘preferential option for the poor’. How will we serve them through our vote? They also ask us to pray: 

"Lord grant us wisdom to act always with integrity, seeking the protection and flourishing of all, and building a society based on justice and peace."

 

 

PRAY FOR THE HEALING OF THE PLANET

Now that President Trump is attempting to wreck the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, leading US to ignore the security of future generations - we very much need to continue to pray that the nations that committed themselves oppose Trump, remain true to their word and bring about the changes needed to be 'merciful' to 'our common home':

 “O God of love, teach us to care for this world our common home. 

Inspire all political leaders and the peoples of all the nations to listen to and heed the cry of the earth and the cry of the poor. 

Let us be united in heart and mind in responding and acting courageously.

May we seek the common good and protect the beautiful earthly garden you have created for us, for all our brothers and sisters, for all generations to come. Amen!"


PRAY FOR THE CHRISTIANS OF IRAQ, SYRIA AND THE MIDDLE EAST

Lord, the plight of our country
is deep and the suffering of the Christians
is heavy and frightening us,
therefore we ask you Lord
to assure our lives, grant us patience and courage
to continue to witness our Christian values with trust and hope.
Lord, peace is the base of any life; give us peace and stability
to live with each other without fear, anxiety,
with dignity and joy, glory to you forever.

Archbishop Louis Raphael I Sako,  Chaldean Catholic Patriarch

Lord, send us the gift of peace

Watch over the people of Iraq who have been forced to flee their homes
and face violence and fear.

Lord, send us the gift of peace

Lead them to a place of safety, comfort those who grieve
and bring healing to those in pain.

Lord, send us the gift of peace

Convert the hearts of those who commit violence and wage war.
Turn them away from persecution towards peace.

Lord, send us the gift of peace

Turn hatred to understanding, and anger to compassion.
Through your love, transform horror into hope.

Lord, send us the gift of peace

And fill us all with your Spirit so that with one voice, throughout the world,
we may cry out:

Lord, send us the gift of peace

Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us…              Catherine Gorman/CAFOD