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Ascension of the Lord

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Ascension of the Lord

20 May 2012 – The Ascension

SUNDAY: Ascension in not just a feast that happens to fall in Eastertide: it is an integral part of the Easter mystery. Remember the Lord’s words at the Last Supper: “I am going to prepare a place for, and after I have gone and prepared you a place, I shall return to take you with me.” The resurrection presumes the Lord’s return to the Father. This is therefore a feast of hope: our hope in the Lord’s return, as he went. Our hope that he will take us with him, when our bodies are raised as his was. Our hope that we will take our place in heaven, where he sits on the Father’s right.

WELCOME THIS WEEK to Fr Michael English who will celebrate Mass on Friday and to Canon Gerry Rodgers who will be here Saturday morning. Some of the children from school will also be with us on Friday for Mass.

WORLD COMMUNICATIONS SUNDAY: This Sunday, we pray for those who work to promote the Gospel message through the varying forms of the mass media. The Catholic Communications Network of the Bishops’ Conference provides support for the bishops of England and Wales and the Church more widely in promoting the Gospel through the media on current issues. The office is the central point for media enquiries. It plays a key role in developing the public profile of the Church. This Sunday’s retiring collection supports this most important branch of the Bishops’ Conference and the Church’s work engaging with the media. Resources and details in the narthex.

FIRST COMMUNION 2012: First Communion, this year, is being celebrated next Sunday – 27 May – at 10.30am – Pentecost Sunday. Do keep them our children in your prayers: Kieran Parsons, Evie Nathasingh, Divya Rajesh, Maisie Sanders, William Bennett, Georgina Cox, Shane Parry, Calum Chilcott, Archie Daniels, Joshua Sims, Billy Jackson, Megan Sanders, Tommy Holland, Joseph Bennett, Isabelle O’Toole, Tore Popek, Callum Witts, Lila Ibrahim, and Dario Vecchia. The final preparation session takes place this Wednesday and the run-through for the weekend takes place on Friday at 5.00pm.

TUESDAY CAFÉ: Beginning this Tuesday – 22 May – our parish will start a short series of catechesis, deepening our understanding of the person of Jesus. Titled ‘Who are you looking for? I am he.’ this course – spread out over nine weeks – will explore the person of Jesus we find in the Gospel. We meet after Mass at about 10.15am for a short little input and then leaving time for conversation around the table to explore the theme a little further. The sessions are open to everyone and you are warmly encouraged to come along and to bring friends with you. There will be some good coffee or tea and some delicious cakes, too. Dates: 22 May, 29 May, 12 June, 19 June, 26 June, 3 July, 10 July, and 17 July. We will meet for an hour… simple, informative, engaging, and uncomplicated. Posters and details are available for you to take away with you from the narthex. Do make a note of the dates… and feel free to come along bringing others with you.

DIOCESAN FAMILY DAY: Taking place at St Brendan’s Sixth Form College on Saturday 30 June, this fantastic opportunity to gather together as a diocesan family comes at the invitation of Bishop Declan. There is plenty for all the family from the young to the very young at heart. There are some superb speakers and workshop facilitators to nurture your faith, deepen your prayer, or allow you to explore particular things of interest. All you need do is sign up for the day giving details of the workshops you want to take part in. The day starts with registration from 9.15am. Poster and handouts in the narthex. IT’S FREE… so do go along and support them day if you can. Pick up a leaflet and have a browse.

DIAMOND JUBILEE ‘RED, WHITE AND BLUE’ SOCIAL: If you are not tootling off for half term over the diamond jubilee weekend, then come along to our parish social on Saturday 2 June at 7.15pm. There will be a tasty jubilee supper and chance to raise a glass, too. There will also be a couple of games of bingo with our fantastic bingo caller making a return visit. Great fun for all the family. The dress code is, of course, red, white and blue! You can pop your name on the list in the narthex from this weekend. We’ll also draw the big prizes of the 200 Club that evening, too. Details on the notice board.

GIFT AID AND TAX RECLAIM: Following changes to the tax thresholds in April 2012 please would you check to make sure that you will pay enough tax in 2012/2013 to cover your gift aid declaration. If you have any queries or would like further details please contact David Lavelle (01275 836779) the parish gift aid secretary.

DO YOU HAVE EXPERTISE IN PERSONNEL AND RECRUITMENT? Can you help our primary school? You may be aware that, our excellent school leadership teams are supported by individuals who volunteer their time to act as Governors, ensuring the good Governance of the schools. At present, due to the retirement of a Foundation Governor, we are seeking an individual from our parish community with Personnel and Recruitment expertise to join the board of Governors at our Primary School. It only involves a few hours per term and, although it is unpaid it can be very rewarding. If you can help, please call Father Christopher on 01275 833699 or Paul Harper, Vice Chair of Governors on 07768 952212 for a confidential discussion.

GLASTONBURY PILGRIMAGE: This year’s pilgrimage is on Sunday 8 July. Mass will be celebrated by Bishop Declan at 3.30 pm in the Abbey grounds. Poster and full programme for the day on the notice board.

CHRISTIAN UNITY SERVICE: The service will be held at Counterslip Baptist Church on Thursday 24th May at 7.30 pm.  The service will be followed by refreshments and an opportunity to meet with our friends from the other local Christian churches.  Do go and represent our parish community if you can.

DO YOU ENJOY SINGING? It would be great if we could for some sort of music group or choir at St. Bernadette’s to help lead and enhance the singing. The first practice will be Friday 15th June, at 7.45pm. The main aim of the choir will be to support the liturgy at some of our Sunday morning Masses. Please come and share your talents and time, especially if you have previous experience of choral singing or  can read music.

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