Portsmouth Diocese E-News

Tuesday 14th March 2017 - Issue 129 (2017/10)

Dear All,

I wish you a good Lent as we now enter the second week. Later this week, I will be with the clergy for a Day of Recollection. Please keep our priests and deacons in your prayers during this season of renewal.


May God bless you.




Fr Rob Galea on overcoming Temptation.

As we continue our journey through Lent, here are some thoughts from Fr Rob Galea on overcoming temptation.


Catholic Youth fan a Flame in Wembley

On 11 March, around 10,000 Catholics attended Flame 2017, a youth event at Wembley arena. Among them were 350 young people with their clergy and Catechists from all across the Diocese of Portsmouth - from Abingdon to the Channel Islands and all points in between - who joined me for this uplifting event.


It was a faith-filled day of praise, worship, fellowship and teaching which concluded with Adoration and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament celebrated by Cardinal Vincent Nicholls who was assisted by Portsmouth Deacon Ansel D'Mello who proclaimed the Gospel and exposed and reposed the Blessed Sacrament.


There are lots of photos here to give you a flavour of the day...



Visit to Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati

Next week, with Fr. PJ Smith, the Head of our Department of Educational Chaplaincies, I am paying a short visit to Turin, in order to place our diocesan youth work under the patronage of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati (1901-1925).


Blessed Pier Giorgio is the patron of World Youth Day and of youth groups. There are various associations dedicated to him throughout the world. 


His relics are entombed in a side altar in Turin cathedral and I will be saying Mass there. His niece, Wanda Gawronska will be present, together with other members of the Frassati Association.


Read more


24 hours for the Lord

Come and spend some time in Adoration with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament as we link with churches in Rome and  around the world on Friday 24th March from 7pm until Saturday 25th March 7pm at St Margaret Mary Church, Middle Road, Park Gate, Southampton. All welcome.


'O come let us adore Him.



Stations of the Cross


Lent is a good opportunity for us to make use of the Stations of the Cross which we find in all our Catholic church buildings as they help us to focus on that journey of Jesus from being condemned to death by Pontius Pilate through to his crucifixion, death and burial which we are preparing to celebrate in Holy Week. There are no set prayers for this devotion, but it is customary to move from station to station, meditating at each one along the Way of the Cross on what is happening at each point of the journey. Judy Pellatt, one of our Cathedral Altar Servers, has sent in a set of meditations, based on two different sources, which you might like to use this Lent.

CAFOD Lent Fast Day - "Turning Little fish into Big fish"

Friday 10th March was Lent Fast Day and in preparation, children around in our local schools have been hearing about how turning "Little Fish into Big Fish" can help Families and Communities in Zambia by Fasting, Giving proceeds to CAFOD in the form of Almsgiving and Prayer.


Here's what some of our schoolchildren have been up to:


St Peter's, Waterlooville 

St Thomas More's, Bedhampton

Corpus Christi, Portsmouth

St Swithun's, Southsea

St Mary's, Gosport

St Paul's School, Paulsgrove


The schools have been taking part in a wide variety of activities to raise money for CAFOD as well as fasting in one way or another and in praying for families and communities like those of Florence.


Lenten Voyage with the Apostleship of the Sea

Fr Colum Kelly, port chaplain with Apostleship of the Sea, presents a series of weekly podcasts during Lent, which carries the theme ‘Our Lenten Voyage’.


Each podcast is built around each Sunday gospel of Lent. It offers a unique perspective of Lent.


Week Two: The Transfiguration

The Apostles were privileged to witness the inner life of Christ, when His splendour was revealed to them on the holy mountain. We pray that our voyage of Lent would bring us a deeper experience of God in our own lives, and to share in His divine life.


Read more



'Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible' … in a day!

We hope you can join us for a one day race through the 8 session course, 'Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible’. This would normally run over 8 weeks with discussions each week. In one day you will see the DVDs followed by short discussions to confirm key points and you will be able to discover the salvation narrative story that runs through the Bible. This is quite exacting in a day but also very rewarding to get the whole picture! Each participant will take away the Bible Timeline Chart which is a very helpful aid to placing all the books in the Bible in relation to each other and to the flow of history. We hope participants will take this course back to parishes across the diocese. We have four DVD courses available on loan from the Formation for Mission group.


Venue: Parish Centre next to St Peter’s Church, Jewry St, Winchester, SO23 8BW.

Date:   Saturday 6th May 2017

Time:   9.00-5.00pm

Cost:   £10 for a Bible Timeline Chart and a light lunch and refreshments

For more details, and to register for the day, contact Liza Nahajski. Read more 


Studying Holy Scripture

Lent is an ideal opportunity to take up the daily discipline of studying Holy Scripture.

In 2014, Pope Francis said "Everyone should carry a small Bible or pocket edition of the Gospels and should find at least a few minutes every day to ready the word of God."


The Bible Society has recognised that there was no edition of the four Gospels alone and has recently published two new volumes which I commend to you.


Read more

St Joseph - Patron of the Universal Church


Next Monday we celebrate the Solemnity of St Joseph, patron of the Universal Church, husbands, fathers, workers and many parishes across our Diocese, for whom we ask his intercession on his Feast Day. Nothing is known of St Joseph except what is said of him in the Gospels. He was a carpenter; he accepted the will of God; and he supported Mary and brought up Jesus. From the human character of his Son we can see that he was a good and responsible father. 


His Feast Day normally falls on 19th March, but is transferred this year to Monday 20th, to give precedence to the Third Sunday of Lent.


Forthcoming Events 

Wednesday 15th March (and Wednesdays throughout Lent)

The Journey - Come Back.

Our Lady's Church, Kings Road, Fleet


Monday 20th - Thursday 23rd March

Faith Formation Seminars for Catholic educators and support staff

Read more


Saturday 25th March

Alton Day of Renewal

Alton Convent, Anstey Lane, Alton GU34 2NG

Read more


Friday 31st March - Sunday 2nd April

Engaged Encounter Weekend

Park Place, Fareham

Read more


Saturday 1st April

Inspirational Speaker Chris Lubbe (Nelson Mandela's body guard) will speak on Justice of human life, compassion, caring and forgiveness.

St Colman's Cosham

Read more


Friday 7th - Sunday 9th April

"Be still and know that I God" - A Lenten silent weekend Retreat reflecting on the Passion of Jesus.

St Joseph's Ashurst 

Read more


Saturday 6th May

'Unlocking the Mystery of the Bible' … in a day!
St Peter’s Parish Centre, Winchester
Read more

Friday 19th - Sunday 21st May

Marriage Encounter Weekend

Park Place, Fareham

Read more


23rd - 29th July

Don Bosco Summer Camp

St Cassian's Kintbury 

Read more





















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Bishop Philip's Engagements


Tuesday 21st March

Thornycroft Priests' Conference



Wednesday 22nd - Sunday 26th March

Pilgrimage to Bl. Pier Giorgio Frassati, Turin





Employment opportunities in the Diocese

The following vacancies currently exist in the Diocese:

Personal Assistant to the Episcopal Vicar for Evangelisation


Organist - Holy Family Southampton


Property & Resources Manager - St Bede’s, Basingstoke


Parish Secretary/Administrator - Waterside Parish


Parish Finance Manager (part time) - Windsor


Read more


Please pray for...

Please pray for...

The repose of the souls of all who have died recently, especially Fr David Hutton, Cong. Orat. a priest of the Bournemouth Oratory in Formation, for all deceased clergy and people of the Diocese and for all the faithful departed. For all who have died as a result warfare, violence, terrorism and persecution. Requiescant in pace. 

For all the sick clergy and for all in our Diocese who are sick and in need of our prayers.

All preparing for Baptism, Confirmation and Reception into the Church at Easter.


Archbishop Cornelius and the clergy and people of our twin diocese of Bamenda following recent outbreak of violence and unrest and the City of Bamenda and for all who have been killed or injured and for Auxiliary Bishop-Elect Michael Bibi who will be ordained Bishop on 25th March.

Peace in the world and for those who govern the nations that they may do so wisely and justly.

All those suffering in the world through hunger, disease, persecution and natural disaster.

For Vocations to the Priesthood, Diaconate and Religious Life and for all currently discerning their   vocation. Also for those preparing for ordination to the priesthood and diaconate this year.

The work of all Evangelisation Strategy Teams across our Diocese and for those entering the "Called and Gifted" process.

The success of the Convocation of Clergy to be held 13th - 15th June.

All the faithful of the Diocese that they may share their time and talents for the the good of the Church and discern how God is calling them in a particular way to be more intentional disciples. 


Bishop Philip Egan

With all good wishes and an assurance of my prayers, 


In Corde Iesu


 Bishop of Portsmouth

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