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 Twenty-Fourth Sunday         THE CROSS - THE SWEET  YOKE!

He is the Christ: He is the Anointed One - anointed by the Spirit for the Mission of the Father’s Kingdom. And He anoints us, those who follow Him, anoints us with the Spirit to serve and proclaim the Father’s Kingdom.
Love and witness and Truth-telling cost Him His life - the Cross. He asks us, ‘Can you drink My Cup? Embrace My Cross?’ Because that is the cost for us of Love, Witness and Truth-telling! The Cross is not out illnesses, even our bereavements: the Cross is the cost of Loving Jesus, Witnessing to Jesus and Truth-telling in the name of Jesus.
That Cross is painful, but a sweet yoke, for He carries it with us and we with Him. We are ‘yoked’ together with Jesus, so that the Father’s Kingdom will finally come. Life-Giving Cross!

THOUGHT for Twenty-Fifth Sunday 
                                                             WHAT IS TRUE GREATNESS IN THE KINGDOM?

Among the squabbling apostles, jostling for more power and prestige, Jesus teaches them and us the nature of greatness. He places a child, powerless, dependent, of no rank of influence, and tells them that the greatness of the Kingdom lies within the child.
There is so much ambition in our world - ambitions for honours, for success, for wealth , for recognition,, for power. Paul tells us ‘be ambitious for higher gifts’ - and then speaks of love! Love is the measure of true greatness, love that safeguards the child and the vulnerable. Love that far from abusing or ignoring, places the children of the world, the children of our parish, the children of our families above every ambition.
Children need less of our money and goods and more of our time and love. They have a right to be safe from all harm, safe from violence of every kind in their homes, in their church, on their streets, on the internet. Honours mean nothing, power means nothing - what matters is that we build a safe world for our children!

THOUGHT for Twenty-Sixth Sunday                WHO OWNS THE KINGDOM?

Who are we willing to work with? Just Catholics? Just Christians? Or put another way - who are we not prepared to work with to build the Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of Justice, Love and Peace?
We can be very possessive of ‘our’ ministry, ‘our’ role, ‘our’ little kingdom. Jesus, the unique Son of God, ‘did not count his equality with God but emptied Himself becoming a slave!’ (St Paul). He shares with us His Spirit in all its fulness, He makes us sons and daughters of God like Himself. Everything He has learnt, he shares with us. We are His trusted co-workers building the Kingdom.
He calls us to work with anyone who shares the values of humanity, compassion, a thirst for justice and a passion for the poor - ANYONE! Whether Christian or Muslim, Buddhist or Sikh, believer or non-believer: all are Children of Abba, our Father, and so all are our sisters and brothers. Work with (and see Christ in) all people of ‘good will’ to build a more just, equal and peaceful world. Then we will show to the world the non-possessive love of Christ Jesus, revealing His Universal Humanity!

THOUGHT for Twenty-Seventh Sunday                    BIND US TOGETHER, LORD

Two hands joined before the Cross! Whose hands? Husband and wife in the sacrament of Marriage, sister and brother in the sacrament  of the Church, citizen and stranger in mutual welcome and support, adult and child in respect and protection, people of all faiths in a fellowship of believers, humanity and creation in care for our ‘common home’. Different hands but all holding love out to another.
Whose hands clasped together before the Cross? In reality in all these hands it is the hand of God’s loving reaching out, holding gently but securely, all humanity, all creation, the whole Church, YOU! Every human hand held out in friendship and love is the touch of the hand of God. And at Mass in the Sign of Peace the Christ in me greets the Christ in you!
The Sacrament of Marriage is the sacred vocation and mission to express this unbreakable bond of Divine love for the world in our unbreakable love for each other! God never lets go, always holds us tenderly and safely - we are called to do the same, in the midst of all the struggles and failures to love!

THOUGHT for Twenty-Eighth Sunday    
                                                        LISTEN TO WHAT  THE SPIRIT SAYS TO THE CHURCH!

The Spirit speaks to God’s People so that God’s People may speak the Spirit of God to the world. But we must listen: ‘Listen, those who ears to hear’ Jesus often said to His disciples - perhaps because He knew that we are poor listeners, to each other and to the Spirit. Indeed to listen to one another’s experience of faith, insights into the mystery of Jesus is to listen to the Spirit who speaks through us all, and not just through priests, bishops and Popes!
The Spirit speaks to bring the Church to the foolish Wisdom of the Gospel - to die is to live, to love sacrificially is to be fulfilled, the poor have first place in the Kingdom and should also in the Church, no competition among you, seek to be rich in love so that the poor might be liberated. The Spirit seeks always to ‘reform and renew’ of the Church so that the Spirit can renew the Face of the Earth through us!

CELEBRATING THE CANONISATION OF ST OSCAR ROMERO - 20th Oct 10am-2pm
It is a remarkable moment for the whole Church, the Canonisation of this Martyr for Justice, Martyr for Poor, this Martyr of the Vatican II Church, this model shepherd for our times. Julian Filokowski, former director of CAFOD and now Director of the Romero Trust, who knew Romero personally will our reflection on his life and witness from 10am to 12.30pm. Then a special Mass of Thanksgiving for Romero will be celebrated at 12.30pm, followed by refreshments. PLEASE COME, BRING FRIENDS AND BE INSPIRED! SATURDAY 20TH OCTOBER HERE AT ST NICKS 10am TO 2.00pm

PARISH OFFICE IN ASSISI CENTRE NOW OPEN!
MONDAY-FRIDAY 10am-12noon;  TUESDAY 2.00-4.00pm; FRIDAY 5.00-7.00pm
I am delighted to announce the opening of the Parish Office in the Assisi Centre. Many thanks to all who have redecorated the room, set it up as an office and the Team who are now helping with the parish administration, our food bank and the ministry of welcoming. This is part of the development of lay leadership and lay ministry in our parish community (planning for the future!). We also welcome Robert von Hawrylak, a parishioner (parish administrator) of St Mary-on-the-Quay who has offered to help with our parish administration for a day and half each week, and is also joining our Parish Finance Committee.


 SUPPORT PROJECT 170  In this 170th Year of our Parish’s mission we must repair and so secure our buildings to be a place of welcome and healing to the poor and marginalised of our city for decades to come. But this Year of memories must be even more a Year of Dreaming God’s Future. We have spent so much money on supporting the impoverished but now we need also to raise funds to ensure we have buildings available to them int he future. Our buildings are missionary buildings. the annual footfall through our buildings is at least 55,000 visits - 55,00 people! You can support the fund raising part of Project 170! Please buy (and encourage others to do the same) the T-shirts and commemorative mugs, We are asking a donation of £5 for the children’s T-shirts, £10 for the adult ones. They are made of fair-traded and organic cotton. We also ask a donation of £5 for the special mugs (made of recycled plastic). So we have ensured we are eco-friendly and just!

POPE FRANCIS AND THE FUTURE’    A Talk by the Jesuit theologian Fr James Hanvey SJ - part of a series for the Year of Mission at St John’s Catholic Church, The Parade, Bath (5 minutes from Bath Station) on Wednesday 19th September at 7.00pm - I highly recommend Fr James and his talk - he speaks in a way very accessible to all. Do go!

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’

CELEBRATE BRISTOL 27-28th Oct
  "See, I am doing a new thing!" - Is 43:19(NIV)
A Conference for the whole family! A non-residential weekend including tailored 'streams' for all ages of children and young adults. Keynote speakers: Michelle Moran, David Wells and Sue Whitehead. Also workshops, seminars, praise and worship, prayer ministry, Mass, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Confession. Hosted by Catholic Charismatic Renewal at St Bede's Catholic College, BS11 0SU. Further details: www.celebrateconference.org

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. Next Baptism course and celebration:
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

POPE FRANCIS ON NUCLER WEAPONS    Pope Francis stated the following last November:‘Now is the time to affirm not only the immorality of the use of nuclear weapons, but the immorality of their possession…  genuinely concerned by the catastrophic humanitarian effects of any employment of nuclear devices and the risk of accidental detonation as a result of any kind of error, the threat of their use, as well as their very possession, is to be firmly condemned. They exist in the service of a mentality of fear.’

 

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