Highlights of the Week

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

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK                Sheep without a Shepherd

They just needed a break - a rest after weeks and months spent with Jesus experiencing a new and challenging world. Not the tranquility of fishing anymore! Not the gentle rhythms of farming the seasons anymore! Not the settled round of companionship and family anymore!
Now they had opened their lives to the pain and despairs, the oppression and injustice the people around them suffered. And it was hard work, no matter how exciting and thrilling to be involved in a new world emerging with this amazing Jesus.
And when they found their quiet retreat just to be together - they were all waiting for them: the broken, the hurting, the questioning, the hoping, the searching. And Jesus put aside His need - and His disciples‘ - to serve, to give hope and healing, to be the Shepherd they yearned for!

A PRAYER FOR GRANDPARENTS    The Feast of Ss Joachim and Anne on 26th July is being celebrated in our diocese as Grandparents’ Day. This will be the intention of our Mass on Thursday at 12noon and there is a special prayer card for all grandparents in our community. All grandparents have a special relationship with and ministry to their grandchildren, apart from all the child care that many grandparents are expected to provide these days.

PARENTS BAPTISM PREPARATION COURSES FOR 2018   Parents seeking the baptism of their children this year are asked to inform Eustace Tameh or Christopher and Epiphania Chipato or Fr Richard as soon as possible. Below are details of the two preparation sessions for parents and the Rite of Catechumen associated with each Baptismal Sunday.

[1]     BAPTISMAL SUNDAY 26th AUGUST at 10am Mass 
Preparation Sessions: Friday10th and 17th August at 6.30pm (Assisi Centre)
Rite of Child Catechumen Sunday 12th August at 10am Mass

[2]   BAPTISMAL SUNDAY 18th NOVEMBER at 10am Mass 
Preparation Sessions: Friday 2nd & 9th November at 6.30pm (Assisi Centre)
Rite of Child Catechumen Sunday 4th November at 10am Mass


JOURNEY OF FAITH
    We will begin the Journey of Faith for 2018-1019 on Friday 7th September at 6.00pm.  Who will you encourage to come and see what being a Catholic Christian means? Or come for a renewal of faith? Or seek Baptism and/or Confirmation? It will be followed by the Healing Mass at 7.30pm.

PLANNING OUR PARISH’S 170th BIRTHDAY!    The various events being planned are grouped under four headings: Educational, Social, Spiritual & Liturgical, Fundraising. Co-ordinators for each ‘group’ has or is being recruited and soon we will invite people to volunteer to be part of one of the four organising teams (for each of the groups). A Calendar of events is being formed. Committee 170 is now the overall co-ordinating group. We look for everyone’s support for this very important year in the long history of our parish.

YEAR 170 CELEBRATIONS     We now have a motto for the Year - Building ‘More Justice, More Love’ (St Oscar Romero) - 170 years of Mission at St Nicks. T-shirts and commemorative mugs are being designed and produced, the four sub-committees are being formed, a Day on Oscar Romero and Liberation Theology is being planned, as also a Service of celebration with our Ecumenical partners and another with our Multi-Faith friends. There will also be a Training Day on Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery. Also Fun Day for all the Parish and concerts. WATCH THIS SPACE! 

NATIONAL EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS - WHAT SHALL WE DO?   We have a strong sense of the Eucharist in our parish, both the Mass and Adoration. It is central to the life and mission of our community. Unfortunately the Congress is taking place over the same weekend that we celebrate our Patronal Feast of St Nicholas and launch our 170th Birthday Year of the Parish. However, on the Friday of the Congress (7th Sept) we will celebrate a Mass on the theme of ‘The Eucharist and Healing’ and on the Saturday of the Congress (8th Sept) we will hold a ‘Day with the Eucharist’ which include Adoration, Teaching, Mass and Fellowship together. Our Feast Day Mass on the Sunday (9th Sept) will celebrate ‘The Eucharist - Energy for Mission’ and will be followed by our shared Cultural Lunch with singing and dancing. In this way we will participate in the National Eucharistic Congress. 

ARCHIVE MATERIALS FOR HISTORY OF ST NICKS AND EXHIBITION    John Flannery is preparing an updated History of St Nick’s Parish as part of our 170th birthday celebrations. Thank you, John. Also Tosin, Francis and Margaret are working on preparing an exhibition about the parish, its history and its present mission, also part of our 170 celebrations. Thank you Tosin, Francis and Margaret. Both would be grateful for any photos, stories, experiences that could contribute to either or both the written History and the exhibition. Please contact them.

GLOBAL HEALING - a national faith response to Pope Francis Letter ‘Laudato Si’  Being launched on ‘Creation Day’ (1st September), resources will be released by our Bishops to encourage us to reflect upon the urgency of changing direction and life-style in order to heal our planet of the damage we have done through the careless exploitation of our environment. How do we live in communion with creation? Watch this space for opportunities to discuss together what we can do as individuals and as a parish to contribute to ‘Global Healing’.

We very much need to continue to pray that the nations that committed themselves to work to heal the planet oppose those leaders and economies that oppose this reality and policy seeking to protect the environment, 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 AND ALL THE SUFFERING PEOPLE 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