I wish you continuing happiness in this Easter season. During this time, hundreds of young people from across the Diocese will be coming to the Cathedral to receive the life-changing Sacrament of Confirmation. Please pray for them and their families, and also for their clergy, catechists and sponsors. Let us pray that these anointed young Catholics will have a transformative impact as missionary disciples of Christ. Here's a short video-catechesis about the Sacrament of Confirmation.
This video focuses on Confirmation, explaining the connection to Pentecost, the special outpouring of the Holy Spirit
that deepens and perfects baptismal grace, and the mission that accompanies reception of the Sacrament.
On Easter Sunday the Diocese launched its own App!
The Portsmouth Catholic Diocese App is available on Apple and Android and is free to download for your smartphone or tablet.
Here you can find maps and information for your nearest Church, including Mass times, Eucharistic Adoration and the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
You will also find a regularly updated calendar of events and many other features relating to Catholic life.
Britain is preparing for a General Election and as Catholics we have a crucial contribution to make to this democratic process. Here are ten key questions to think about. You could use them to evaluate a manifesto, or you could put them to a prospective parliamentary candidate.
When I arrived in Rome last Thursday, I stayed at the Venerable English College overnight before heading up on Friday to Palazzola for the Bishops' Conference. It was great to stay in the College and it brought back many memories of my time there as a student for the priesthood 1980-1985. The place is looking splendid although there are not as many seminarians as in my time. There are three students in the College for our Diocese of Portsmouth: Matthew King, Oliver Welsford and Daniel Ferguson. I found them all on good form and after Holy Hour we went out to supper. Please pray for them.
While I was there I also had the joy of meeting once again Wanda Gawronska, the niece of Blessed Pier Giorgio. She came over to the College on her 'motorino' and we spent a wonderful hour and a half reminiscing about our recent trip to Turin and Pollone. We also spoke about Pier Giorgio's possible canonisation. Indeed I've been talking to Cardinal Vincent about this and whether we might petition the Holy Father to canonise Bl Pier Giorgio at the end of next year's Synod on Youth. Please say a prayer for this intention.
I am delighted to announce that the Oratory in Formation at Sacred Heart, Bournemouth will begin on 31st May 2017.
Please pray for the priests (Fr. Peter Edwards and Fr. Dominic Jacob) and the student brother who will form the initial community.
The new Oratory in Formation at the Church of the Sacred Heart will be situated in the heart of Bournemouth, surrounded by university accommodation, many language school students, diverse ethnic communities, and homelessness, beside long-standing residents, the hospitality industry, business and commerce.
Could you volunteer as an Adult helper for this year’s Pilgrimage? Or perhaps you are a qualified Nurse or Doctor and would like to consider joining the Catholic Association Pilgrimage?
Our Adult Helper application deadline is 1st June. Please contact Fr John Cooke or Mrs Clare Ryan on 01489 572797 or email for information on helping, or contact them if you would like more information on joining the Pilgrimage this year, but not in a helper capacity.
In the second of our series of reflections from Jennifer Geach on the Sundays of Easter, we focus on the Third Sunday of Easter - Christ is risen!
Fr. Julián Carrón, leader of Communion and Liberation, has asked Fr. José ("Pepe") Clavería to be a member of the governing body of the Sacred Heart school in Milan. The school is the only one belonging officially to the catholic movement Communion and Liberation. It is a kind of flag ship for many others in Italy and all over the world, being the number one ranked school in Milan. Fr. Pepe will take on the prestigious role of Rector. The appointment is effective September 2017.
We offer him our prayers and best wishes in this new appointment. At the same time, full of thanks for all his service in our Diocese these last four years, not least his work as parish priest in Maidenhead and chaplain to Called and Gifted, now leader of the Dialogue and Proclamation sub-department, we are sorry to lose him. Please pray for him and also for St. Edmund Campion parish, as we seek a new pastor.
The Called and Gifted team have identified some specific needs in the work of the diocese and the sorts of charisms and skills required to undertake these.
Please see their latest newsletter here for more information.
You are invited to Southampton Celebrate Weekend which will be taking place on Saturday 30th September & Sunday 1st October at St. George Catholic College, Swathling, Southampton.
A "Faith Filled" weekend with Teaching, Praise & Worship, Seminars, Daily Mass, Adoration, Drama & Mimes and Reconciliation - a real celebration of our faith. Children's streams available with age appropriate teaching.
You don't need to live in Southampton - the event is open to the whole diocese.
Full details and booking form available online or telephone Peter & Lynda on 023 80292058.
The Celebrate Team are hosting a Friends of Celebrate Meeting at St Margaret Mary Church Hall, Middle Road, Park Gate, SO31 7GH on Sunday 14th May. It will offer people a real Taste of Celebrate and starts at 3pm. Everyone is welcome. Bring a friend who has never been to Celebrate and wants an idea of what goes on before signing up for the weekend!
The parish of St Margaret Mary Park Gate holds a bi-monthly Praise & Worship Mass which has become quite popular – especially within the ‘Celebrate’ community.
The next Mass will be held on Sunday 14th May at 6.30pm with the Sacrament of Reconciliation available in the Lady Chapel from 5.30pm - 6.30pm, prior to the Mass at St Margaret Mary Church, Middle Road, Park Gate, SO31 7GH.
After the Mass there will be a time of fellowship and shared hospitality in the hall.
The May Bulletin from the Justice, Peace and Social Responsibility Team is available to read on our website.
Saturday 6th May
Friday 19th - Sunday 21st May
Marriage Encounter Weekend
Park Place, Fareham
Saturday 20th May
Alton Day of Renewal
23rd - 29th July
Don Bosco Summer Camp
St Cassian's Kintbury
Friday 18th - Friday 25th August
Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes
Monday 21st - Friday 25th August
Fanning the Flame - Hampshire Camp
Thursday 27th April – Friday 5th May
Bishops’ Conference Plenary Assembly and Retreat, Rome
Saturday 6th May
Confirmation Mass, St John’s Cathedral, Portsmouth;
Dialogue with Sectors Meeting, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
Sunday 7th May
Confirmation Mass, St John’s Cathedral, Portsmouth
Monday 8th May
Various Meetings, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
All preparing for Confirmation and First Holy Communion.
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