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Seventh Sunday of the Year

Seventh Sunday of the Year

19 February 2012 – Seventh Sunday of the Year


THIS SUNDAY: There are many “themes” running through the Gospel today—faith, perseverance, healing—which seem dramatic to us. But the theme highlighted by our first reading is that of the power of Jesus to forgive sins—something that would perhaps have been more remarkable in his own time. Saint Mark is clearly revealing to us something important about Jesus of Nazareth—something which shocks and surprises the scribes listening to Jesus. Such an immediate forgiveness of sins was, to them, new and disturbing. Perhaps we need to ask ourselves if we take forgiveness for granted sometimes: when the paralytic, after all the struggles and efforts of his family and friends, heard Jesus say, “Your sins are forgiven”, was he disappointed or delighted?

FIRST COMMUNION 2012: The preparation sessions for our youngsters start up again this coming week -Wednesday, 22 February – at 11.00am in school.  The children will still have their books in school already, but if they haven’t, parents are asked to make sure you send them in, please. We welcome the children to 10.30am Mass on Sunday 11 March as they are presented with a copy of the scriptures, reminding them of Christ’s presence to us in his Word – a Word that grow attentive to each and every time we celebrate the Eucharist.

BATH HALF MARATHON: Maria Murphy is planning to run this year’s half marathon to raise funds for the Society for Mucopolysaccharide Diseases (MPS), diseases that causes progressive physical disability as well as severe degenerative mental deterioration in children. Maria has put a sponsor form on the notice board in the narthex, so if you would care to sponsor her, please sign up! The half marathon takes place on 11 March… so there’s time to give her your support.

PARISH LITURGY GROUP: This gathering will look at ensuring that each of our ministers is formed and supported, as well as providing a real opportunity to reflect upon what we do as a community of prayer. The meeting aims, also, at allowing each of those coordinators to communicate with one another and facilitate a planning of what takes place here when it comes to our prayer. They meet on Tuesday 6 March at 7.00pm.

THE SEASON OF LENT ~ a season of prayer, fasting and almsgiving so that we might be re-moulded, renewed, re-imagined, refreshed and re-fashioned to become more like Christ.

CAFOD FAST DAY: This year, the CAFOD fast day takes place on Friday 2 March. Envelopes will be attached to next week’s newsletter in readiness for the start of Lent and the Lenten collection will take place on Saturday 3/Sunday 4 March (Second Sunday of Lent). This year’s collection is focused upon giving clean water to communities. There is a government price match – for every £1 we raise for CAFOD, the government will match it with another £1. Look out for your envelope and please give as generously as you can.

ASH WEDNESDAY: The Season of Lent begins on Wednesday 22 February. Two Masses in Church – 9.30am and 7.00pm. There will also be a Liturgy of the Word with the distribution of Ashes in our primary school. It’s not a Holyday of Obligation, but it is an important start to this season on renewal, growth, and preparation.

LENTEN SOUP LUNCHES: These two wonderfully nourishing yet simple soup lunches that mark the start and the end of Lent in our parish will take place on Friday 24 February at 12noon onwards (…that’s this coming Friday), and also on Palm Sunday – 1 April – from 12noon onwards. A great way to tap into that Lenten fasting as well as reaching our in love to those less fortunate than ourselves. Details of the ecumenical lunches will appear in the newsletter next week. Just sign up in the narthex for this coming Friday’s.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS: Each Sunday of Lent, beginning 26 February at 4.00pm, there will be the celebration of the Stations of the Cross followed by Benediction. This prayerful journey to the Cross draws us deeper into the mystery of Christ’s love for us. If you can make this a real part of your Lenten prayer, please do come along. We’ll use a different set of reflections for each of the weeks.

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER: Just for the Season of Lent, there will be Morning Prayer in the Church on Sundays beginning at 9.45am. If you want to make this part of your Lenten Prayer, then please come along. The Liturgy of the Hours is a beautiful celebration of the psalms sung to simple tones and enables us to pray, not only for the Church, but with and on behalf of the Church, too. We’ll begin Morning Prayer next Sundays on 26 February. This is only for the six Sundays of Lent… so come and see!

FRIDAY HOLY HOUR: On each of the Fridays of Lent, the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed for an hour of prayer after the morning Mass (so from 10.00am until 11.00am) just to allow those who want to, to either stay on or to allow folk to just pop in for a moment of prayer. The Church will be open, so do make use of this little opportunity to deepen our relation with the Lord.

WALK WITH ME: These beautiful little books of Lenten reflections are available from the Narthex. They cost £1 and will take you through each day of the six weeks of Lent. Pick up your copy whilst they are there. The money can be popped in with the newspaper money.

BORN FOR THIS: A powerful musical recounting the story of Easter is being performed in our Cathedral by talented young people from our diocese. Taking place on Saturday 3 March in the Cathedral, this wonderful musical presentation begins at 7.30pm… and all are welcome. Entry is free. An ideal opportunity to celebrate the Season of Lent and look forward to the wonder of Easter. Do go along and support our young people, our secondary schools, and our Diocesan Youth Service. Poster in the narthex for more info.

WOMEN’S WORLD DAY OF PRAYER taking place on Friday 2 March.  This year the service for the local Christian Churches is being held at Christchurch, Petherton Road at 11.00am and the theme prepared by the women of Malaysia is for Justice to Prevail throughtout the World.  Following the service a light lunch will be offered. Please do go along and join them as well as representing St B’s.

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