I'm off to Hasselt Belgium next week to speak on 'Eucharist as Source of New Evangelisation' for 700th anniversary of the Eucharistic Miracle.
In the last days of July 1317, a Host is believed to have bled (literally) after being touched by unconsecrated hands, in a little farm in Viversel (Lummen). It was the starting point for several miracles in Viversel and the former abbey of Herkenrode. This ‘Sacrament of Miracle’ is – since 1804 after the French Revolution - venerated in the Cathedral St Quentin of Hasselt. Every year on July 25th, the Sacrament of Miracle is exposed for a solemn adoration.
You can read more about the Eucharistic Miracle of Herkenrode here.
Meanwhile, God bless you and have a good week ahead.
I have made some further new clergy appointments in the diocese, which take effect from 8th September 2017.
Please pray that in the new appointments the Lord will bless these pastors and their communities abundantly.
In the autumn, Fr. Tom Grufferty will move from Christchurch and ‘change status.’ My thanks to him for all his good work as parish priest and as the Coordinating Pastor and Dean. After a short sabbatical, he will live in Gosport and take up a new role as Chaplain to the Heads and Principals of our schools. He will also assist the priests of the Solent Pastoral Area.
I have appointed Deacon Stephen Morgan to assist Fr James Bradley in the parish of the Holy Family, Millbrook (in addition to his role as Diocesan Financial Secretary.)
Following his recent ordination, I have appointed Deacon James Snyder to assist Fr Sean Tobin in the parish of The Holy Trinity and Our Lady, Fleet and Church Crookham.
Please welcome Fr Paul Rowan, a priest of the Archdiocese of Liverpool, who is a teacher and member of the SLT of Beaulieu Convent School, Jersey.
How many priests has your Parish produced? Maybe you live in one of those 'hot spots' of the Diocese from which quite a few of our present priests have come? There's another and much more important question. How many priests is your Parish going to give in the future? I reminded everyone of this in my recent Pastoral Letter that priests come from families just like yours and mine. At a football match, for instance, it could be both a fan in the crowd and a player on the field who are called to priesthood. Jesus called all sorts to be his first followers. He calls all of us now to be his missionary disciples. From among those he calls some will hear the call to the sacred priesthood. It could be you or someone you know.
I would like to draw your attention to a world-wide campaign to ask the Holy Father to canonise Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati at the end of the Synod on Youth next year and a sign-up web-based petition. Blessed Pier Giorgio's niece, Wanda Gawronska, who I met earlier this year recently wrote to me:
"Fr. Niemczak has put on the internet a letter petition to Pope Francis to be signed by every friend of Pier Giorgio but above all by youth devoted to Pier Giorgio, petition for canonization on the occasion of the Synod. I am sure you will help in spreading it also. Bishop Sartain is coming to Pollone around the 20th of July and he is also willing to work on a letter signed by the USA bishops, friends of Pier Giorgio!”
You can sign the petition here.
There are two events coming up for the Centenary of the birth of Blessed Oscar Romero to which I draw your attention:
Special Centenary Mass
Saturday 12th August at 12.30pm St George’s Cathedral, Southwark.
(followed by Reception in the Amigo Hall)
Evensong: National Ecumenical Celebration
Saturday 23rd September at 3.00pm Westminster Abbey.
(This event requires tickets.)
Our energy contacts are now supplied by Inter-Diocesan Fuel Management Limited (IFM) which was established in 1994 by Catholic Dioceses in England and Wales. It was formed under the Catholic ethos of ‘brother helping brother’ for mutual trading, to enable Diocese to bulk purchase its energy requirements and take advantage of the better buying power of a substantial organisation. I
Three quarters of the Dioceses in England and Wales are now served by one operation for mutual benefit. By purchasing for such large quantities, the parishes benefit from a lower cost than if they went to market individually.
When Fr. PJ and I were in Turin in the Spring to meet Wanda Gawronska and to dedicate the youth work of the diocese to Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, we met Brother Joseph Bailham, a Dominican who was organising a pilgrimage to Oropa and Turin for young people. Recently he wrote to me about the pilgrimage.
"My group returned to England on 7th July after a truly wonderful week in Turin and Oropa. We were there from Monday 3rd - Friday 7th July. We were staying at the shrine of Don Bosco from the Monday until Wednesday lunch, which means we were able to celebrate the feast of Bl. Pier Giorgio by his relics in the cathedral (and which brought back fond memories of our joint visit earlier in the year). Inspired by your example, we decided we would consecrate our Dominican Youth Movement to the patronage of Bl. Pier Giorgio, which we did before his relics.
Behind closed doors – voices against gender-based violence, human trafficking and modern-day slavery, is a research project, commissioned by Churches Together in England, and made possible through a legacy gift of the former Leicester Free Church Women’s Council.
More information to follow, but please keep the date free.
Please send these rosaries to:
Michael Blackburn, 164 Green Park Road, Halifax HX3 0SP.
For more information, please contact Michael on 01422 352559 or via e-mail.
2017’s biggest young Catholic Summer Festival!
Inheritance, a 5-day camping festival run by young people for young people. It is about us discovering who we are as we come face-to-face with the God who made us, knows us and loves us.
Thursday 24th - Monday 28th August 2017
Guests can arrive onsite from 5pm on Thursday 24th August. The festival kicks-off at 7pm that evening and will finish at 1pm on Monday 28th August. Guests will need to leave the site by 5pm on Monday evening.
The National Catholic Shrine of Our Lady in Walsingham. The festival site is just opposite to the premises of the Catholic shrine. It is just 15 minutes drive from the seaside town of Wells-next-the-Sea and 2 and a half hours from London (via the M11). Look out for the big top!
Houghton St Giles, Walsingham, Norfolk, NR22 6AL
St Joseph's & St Edmund's Parish in Southampton City Centre is organising a Pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela from 16th– 23rd June 2018.
To secure the excellent price of £830 the firm organising the travel arrangements need to book flights by mid-August to secure the best possible deal. (Deposit £200 per head).
Fly to Madrid and then drive to Burgos when we will spend one day in Loyola, the birth place of St Ignatius to visit his shrine. We then follow the route of the Camino, the way of St James, to Santiago. There is the opportunity for walking some of the route but the coach will also be available for those who would rather use it. There will be daily celebration of Mass.
For further details and booking forms please contact Godfrey Doyle via e-mail or telephone 07714 370529.
The Formation for Mission Team have a number of new courses starting soon which provide training for Parish Catechists. You can download an information booklet here.
The new course We are all Witnesses - Essential Training for Catechists is now available to book. You can find details here.
You can find out more about the Formation for Mission Team on their website.
Harvester Catholic Men's Weekend
High Leigh Centre, Hoddesden
National Justice & Peace Conference:
A Sabbath for the Earth and the Poor
the challenge of Pope Francis
The Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick, Derbyshire
Saturday 22nd July
Alton Day of Renewal
23rd - 29th July
Don Bosco Summer Camp
St Cassian's Kintbury
St John Paul II Walking Pilgrimage to Walsingham
Saturday 12th August
Franciscan Celebration Called to be Presence in the World
Monday 14th - Thursday 17th August
Faith Summer Break
Residential faith camp for children aged 11-15
Friday 18th - Friday 25th August
Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes
Saturday 19th August
Alton Day of Renewal
Monday 21st - Friday 25th August
Fanning the Flame - Hampshire Camp
Saturday 9th September
Diocesan Day for Altar Servers
Saturday 9th September
Blessed Oscar Romero Walking Pilgrimage
St Joseph's Church, Havant to St John's Cathedral, Portsmouth
Sunday 24th September
International Migrant Mass
St John's Cathedral, 3pm
30th September - 1st October
Saturday 21st October
National Altar Servers' Mass
Westminster Cathedral, 2.30pm.
Thursday 20th July
Bishop’s Council, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
Friday 21st July
Various meetings, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
Sunday 23rd July
Talk at Eucharistic Congress, Hasselt, Belgium
Tuesday 25th July
Various meetings, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
Thursday 27th July
Church Leader’s Meeting, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth
The repose of the souls of all who have died recently, especially those killed through acts of warfare, violence, terrorism and natural disaster. Please pray particularly for the repose of the soul of young Alfie Jones who died last week after a battle with a rare bone cancer. Requiescant in pace.
For all clergy preparing to move to new appointments and for their parishes.
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