Portsmouth Diocese e-News

Tuesday 6th March 2018 - Issue 174 (2018/10)


Dear Friends,


We’ve now reached the Third Week of our Lenten journey with Christ. If you feel you are flagging a bit in your Lenten works of prayer, self-denial and almsgiving, it is of course never too late to start or to re-boot! I am praying earnestly this Lent for vocations, vocations to the laity – read my homily at Bracknell – and vocations to the sacred priesthood. Meanwhile, may God bless you all. Do come and join us for the Chrism Mass here in the cathedral on Tuesday of Holy Week (27th) at 11.00 am. We’re looking for singers too: click the contact below for details.  




Mass VIII ('De Angelis’) 

An easy one this week - click on the picture! The Kyrie and the whole Mass setting of the Missa de Angelis – Mass VIII in the Kyriale - has become well-known throughout the world. However, apart from the Sanctus, Mass VIII is a relatively modern composition, originating in the 15th or early 16th century. Its history and origins are interesting: check out the highly informative article in the December 1933 edition of Caecilia, Magazine of Catholic Church and School Music here.


After Vatican II, with the wide-spread use of the vernacular in the Liturgy and the development of home-grown musical compositions for the Mass, Rome became increasingly anxious that many Catholics were losing familiarity with plainchant and that on major occasions and in international gatherings, there were no common songs that everyone knew. Consequently, in 1974, the Congregation for Divine Worship published a collection of chants called Jubilate Deo that every Catholic ought to know. Besides such well-known hymns as the Tantum ergo used at Benediction and the Salve Regina anthem to the Blessed Virgin Mary, all the parts of Missa de Angelis were included. Mass VIII remains a favourite today for solemn occasions in many of our parishes.


"Living in the Light": Scott Hahn reflects on 4th Sunday of Lent

The Sunday readings in Lent have been showing us the high points of salvation history—God’s covenant with creation in the time of Noah; His promises to Abraham; the law He gave to Israel at Sinai.


This Sunday we hear of the destruction of the kingdom established by God’s final Old Testament covenant—the covenant with David. God is rich in mercy. He promised that David’s kingdom would last forever, that David’s son would be His Son and rule all nations . In Jesus, God keeps that promise.


Midway through this season of repentance, let us again behold the Pierced One and rededicate ourselves to living the “good works” that God has prepared us for.

Read the complete reflection for this coming Sunday by theologian and best-selling author, Dr Scott Hahn - and sign up to receive the reflections each week by e-mail here.  



Next Sunday is Laetare Sunday - Mothering Sunday

Next Sunday, the Fourth of Lent, is called Laetare Sunday ('Rejoicing Sunday') as we will be mid-way through our Lenten journey. Try to wear a bit of pink at Mass next Sunday to match the liturgical colour of the day! It’s also for us in England 'Mothering Sunday' and so a great day to celebrate motherhood, to pray for Mother Church and to pray for our mothers, living and dead. 


In this week's reflection, Jennifer Geach reflects on how it is always interesting to put the scripture that we hear on Sundays into context: for while every word of scripture is precious, we can sometimes better understand what is being said if we know what precedes and follows. Thus on Laetare Sunday, the respite Sunday in the middle of Lent, we are given a reading from Chronicles; in fact the last chapter. 


You can read the full reflection here.




Pope Francis creates new Memorial of Mary, Mother of the Church

Last Saturday Pope Francis decreed that the devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, under the title of Mother of the Church, be inserted into the Roman Calendar.  The liturgical celebration, Beata Mariæ Virginis, Ecclesiæ Matris, is to be celebrated annually, as a Memorial. From this year, all the dioceses and parishes will celebrate this Feast the Monday following Pentecost. This official celebration underlines a characteristic of the Virgin Mary, who is both mother of Christ and of the Church.


You can read more here.


Here is a prayer to say: 


Lord our God, through your power and goodness, the Blessed Virgin, the fairest fruit of your redeeming love, shines forth as the perfect image of the Church, grant to your people on their pilgrim way on earth, that, with eyes fixed on Mary, they may follow closely in the footsteps of her Son, until they come to that fullness of glory which now they contemplate in His Mother, with hearts filled with joy. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen. 



Join us for the Wednesday Webinar this Wednesday 7 - 8pm

4th Sunday of Lent, Year B: John 3:14-21: From Darkness into Light

God calls us to faith in his Son. He invites us to step out of darkness and sin, into the light and truth. 


St John wonderfully expresses the heart of our faith: ‘God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not be lost but may have eternal life.’


In our webinar this Wednesday, we’ll explore the identity of Jesus and the eternal life he offers everyone. We’ll reflect on:

Faith: Is God’s grace - this gift of new and eternal life - a reality or an abstraction?

Hope: How is his life given to us now? How do we receive it?

Love: What difference does it make to us personally and to society at large?


Sign up for the webinar here or catch up via the recording if you are unable to join us.



Are you a singer? Why not join the choir for this year's Chrism Mass?

The Chrism Mass is an important event in the life of the diocese, when the priests gather with the bishop to renew their commitment to their ministry and the Holy Oils are blessed, which takes place on Tuesday in Holy Week - 27th March - at St John's Cathedral, Portsmouth.


Singers are now being sought to form the choir. Would you like to be part of the choir this year? If so please contact Sarah Gallop sgallop87@gmail.com to register your interest.


A rehearsal will take place on Saturday 24th March, 2:00pm - 4:30pm at Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church, Stubbington, PO14 2PL.







 Safeguarding our Data 

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) May 2018

What is this all about?

Data protection in the UK is changing in May 2018 and the new law gives individuals (you and me) more rights over how information about them is stored and used by organisations including our diocese and parishes.  In particular, organisations have to tell individuals what they are doing with information they are storing and processing.


Whether in a parish, framework or any other group each of us needs to comply with the new legislation – in particular we need to know what data we hold, where it is and how we use it.


Read more here



Last chance to book for the National Eucharistic Congress 

Have you booked your place for Adoremus National Eucharistic Pilgrimage and Congress yet?  Adoremus  will take place from 7th – 9th September 2018 in Liverpool with some 10,000 Catholics expected to attend.  

Our Diocese has a limited ticket allocation.  It is essential that you book your tickets NOW by emailing congress@portsmouthdiocese.org.uk or phoning 07780 221686.


The deadline for ticket applications is Wednesday 14th March - that's next week!  



As Fairtrade Fortnight continues, what are you doing to help?

Fairtrade Fortnight: Monday 26th February - Sunday 11th March

This week is the second week of Fairtrade Fortnight which invites us  to "Come on in".  What a great opportunity to welcome people into our parishes sharing not only coffee but also a chance to highlight our care for human dignity and the earth.  Fairtrade is a simple way to make a difference to the lives of the people who grow the things we love. 


By changing the way trade works through better prices, decent working conditions and a fair deal for farmers and workers in developing countries we support dignity and independence and stand up against exploitation.  If you are a Fairtrade parish  there are some helpful worship materials on the Fairtrade website.   





Come and discover a great new First Holy Communion course

The Formation for Mission team is offering 2 training days for anyone interested in the new First Holy Communion programme, ‘I want to make my Home in you’ which I commend to you and recently now published by Redemptorist Publications.


This programme integrates evangelisation and catechesis through the use of Scripture and beautiful silhouettes.


Come and join us to discover the programme and receive training:


Saturday 17th March, in Holy Family Church, Redbridge Hill, Southampton SO16 4PL, from 9.30 am to 1.00 pm for a morning session.


Saturday 12th May, in St Bede’s Church, Popley Way, Basingstoke, RG24 9DX, from 9.30 am (beginning with Mass) to 3.00 pm.


The material for the programme (see next item) will be available for purchase at both these days.


E-mail Sr Hyacinthe: ffm@portsmouthdiocese.org.uk if you would like to attend either of these days.



Rosary on the Coast for Faith, Life & Peace in the British Isles

Sunday 29th April 2018 at 3pm


Rosary on the Coast is a day of pilgrimage and prayer for the re-flourishing of our Faith, for the grace to build a culture of Life and for true Peace to reign in the hearts of all peoples and nations.


This is an invitation to prayerfully prepare for Rosary on the Coast for 40 days with Our Blessed Lady the Sorrowful & Immaculate Heart of Mary, St. Joseph, St. Andrew, St. David, St. George, St. Patrick and with all the Saints and Martyrs of Wales, Scotland, England and Ireland in a spirit of penance, prayer, mortification and intercession.


The 40 Days Spiritual Preparation runs from Monday 19th March to Friday 27th April followed by a day to prepare by seeking the Sacrament of Confession.


Read more here.



Big Diocesan Day in Preparation for the Eucharistic Congress!

The Educational Chaplaincies team at my request have organised an inspiring day to help develop the mission of our Diocese in prayer, contemplation and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. This will take place on Saturday 5th May at the New Theatre Royal in Portsmouth. I invite all adorers from throughout the Diocese together with those who have thought about adoring but have never done so to join me for the day.  I also invite those who would like to know more about the Blessed Sacrament to come too. This will be a day for all to come and Adore!


The planning is complete so now it’s your turn.  Please come and join me adore!


Book your ticket now by emailing congress@portsmouthdiocese.org.uk or phoning 07780221686.


Click the image to download and display a poster for the event.



New handbook for Catechists from CTS to be published this week

A Handbook for Catechists by Hannah Vaughan-Spruce (a familiar face in our diocese) covers the essential skills, knowledge and understanding you need to become an inspiring and effective catechist. 

Each chapter includes a broad look at some important dimensions of the vocation, including what catechesis is, its purpose and how catechesis helps the faithful to live a life of discipleship – following in the footsteps of Christ. 

It features an invaluable collection of catechetical tips, techniques, methodologies, and advice. The various reflection questions will help the reader to prayerfully reflect upon what they have learnt and to integrate the lessons into their own teaching sessions. 

This book is an essential resource for anyone who has a role in handing on the faith to others. It will spur a new appreciation of the opportunities and challenges of catechesis in the Church today.


You can order your copy here.



Natural Fertility Awareness 1-1 Instruction Available!

This year 2018 marks the 50th Anniversary of Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae – outlining the Church’s teaching on the transmission of human life. One of the fruits of this encyclical was the development of natural methods of family planning and fertility awareness designed to help people (women of reproductive age, engaged and married couples) to discover more about the innate dignity of their bodies and the gift of fertility.

The Creighton Model FertilityCare system is a method of Natural Fertility Awareness and Family Planning which is very effective in achieving or avoiding pregnancy using standardised observations seen during a woman's monthly cycle. These same observations can be used to detect any gynaecological abnormalities and infertility, which can then be treated using NaproTechnology - a new science providing medical and surgical treatments which cooperate with and restore natural human physiology and sustain procreative potential.

For more information, or to book 1-1 NFP instruction, please contact Amanda on 07546 382 538 or email info@whollynaturalfertility.com



Social Justice Assembly

Sadly due to the advertise weather it was decided to cancelled our Assembly at short notice last Saturday.  We had a kind offer from our neighbouring Diocese of Clifton if people would like to join them next Saturday 10th March for their Laudato si day in Salisbury where Ellen Teague will be speaking. Contact Sue Ingram. Hopefully there will be other occasions when both Ellen and Tim Aldred will be able to visit us again.  


Also across the diocese we have heard about that parishes are having events to highlight Fairtrade like the Palestinian Meal and speaker from the Palestinian Coop in Havant on 15th March and in St Peter's Church, Winchester pastoral centre next Saturday 10th March at 2.30 to 4pm there will be a Fairtrade event of tea/coffee, delicious homemade cakes, and a few stalls - Tradecraft, WoW Bags - Wonders of Waste that I will be selling and a Live Simply run by Beth . 


Great to see everyone's enthusiasms for justice, if you have local events you would like highlighted in the next JPSR bulletin please send it to jpsr@portsmouthdiocese.org.uk 


You can read the March JPSR bulletin here



Parish Visitation to Bracknell

This last weekend I undertook the Pastoral Visitation of the parish of St Joseph and  St Margaret Clitherow in Bracknell. It was a splendid occasion to meet with Fr Danny McAvoy and so many of the wonderful parishioners. There is a real sense of energy and “can do” about the parish. It has a beautiful church and excellent social facilities and the parishioners are heavily committed to the New Evangelisation and to works of justice and charity in the neighbourhood. The recent renovation of the town centre and its shops means that the church is ideally placed right in the heart of all the action. Please pray for the parish and its two schools, for the clergy and people.


You can read my homily here.





Teachers never know just how influential they can be...

Not only did snow descend upon us last week but also a Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm helicopter! The students of St. Mary's Independent School from the ages of 3 to 16 stood rooted in the cold, watched its graceful (and noisy) descent and broke into a round of applause when it landed on the centre spot of one of the football pitches. The school has a triple motto: We nurture. We inspire and We achieve. It was in the early eighties that we last had such a spectacle. In the Reception Class at that time children were asked to draw a picture of themselves and complete the caption: 'When I grow up I want to be........'   One lad added '.....a pilot'.    He is now just that: a successful flying career in the R.A.F. Teachers never know just how influential they can be, not just by their words and actions, but also by encouraging  such powerful visual aids to prompt aspirations and help our young people to achieve.





Catholic Women's League raises funds for Apostleship of the Sea

The Catholic Women’s League is still a presence in Wantage even though there is no longer a viable Section. CWL member Mary Bowen recently ran two successful stalls in the Parish of St John Vianney, raising funds for the Apostleship of the Sea. Mary is affiliated to Gosport Section but is still keen to keep the CWL flag flying in Wantage!


The Catholic Women’s League was founded in 1906 by Margaret Fletcher and today is a worldwide organisation, united in friendship and love, where members use and develop their talents in projects for the world, the nation, the diocese and the parish.


The Portsmouth Branch has Sections meeting in Farnborough, Fleet, Gosport, Hayling Island, Jersey East, Lymington, Portsmouth, Southbourne and Winchester. If you would like to find out more, please contact the Portsmouth Branch Secretary: Marguerite Boulter on 01489 575663 or e-mail: margieboulter@aol.com




Congratulations to Tadley’s “Good Citizen” 

On Sunday 25th February 2018, at the end of the 9:15am Mass at St Michael’s Church, Tadley, parishioner Mary Coleman was presented with the Tadley Good Citizen Award by Councillor Jo Page, Chairperson of Tadley Council.


Mary has given voluntary service to St Michael’s Hospice in Basingstoke for 22 years, having now retired. In consulting the Hospice for the award, Councillor Page was told that Mary’s presence often lit up the place and she richly deserved local recognition.


The photograph shows Fr Patrick Tansey, Mary Coleman holding her award, and behind her Rosemary Bond, a local member of the Tadley Community who initiated the process after speaking with Fr Tansey last year. Councillor Page is alongside them wearing her Chain of Office.


The presentation has received considerable attention on local Facebook, with many people sending their congratulations to “a lovely lady”.


Thanks to parishioner Bill Reilly for the photograph.



Bishop Philip's Engagements  

Tuesday 6th March

Meeting of Co-ordinating Pastors, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth

Discussion with FOCUS Team, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth


Friday 9th March

Planning session with Vocations Director, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth

 Update from Vocations Promotor, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth


Saturday 10th - Sunday 11th March

Parish Visitation, Our Lady & St Dominic, Farnborough


Monday 12th – Tuesday 13th March

Clergy overnight meeting, Marwell


Thursday 15th March
Opening new facility, St Patrick’s School, Farnborough


Friday 16th March
Chapter of Canons Meeting, Bishop’s House, Portsmouth


Saturday 17th March 
Engaged Couples Event, Discovery Centre, Portsmouth


Saturday 17th - Sunday 18th March 

Parish Visitation: Havant



Diocesan Prayer Intentions

Each day of the year the liturgical calendar gives us a variety of seasons and celebrations of saints. These are outlined in the Diocesan Ordo along with a daily prayer for a diocesan intention. I would like to encourage you to add these intentions to your daily prayers.    

Sunday 4th March


National Prayer Cycle: All Penitents

Diocesan Prayer: Priests no longer in active ministry


Monday 5th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: Fair Trade Networks


Tuesday 6th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent 

Diocesan Prayer: Wisdom House, Romsey


Wednesday 7th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent

[The Memorial of SS Perpetua & Felicity may be commemorated]

Diocesan Prayer: Mill Hill Fathers in the Diocese 


Thursday 8th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent

[The Memorial of St John of God may be commemorated]

Diocesan Prayer: All working in the Hospice movement


Friday 9th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent

[The Memorial of St Frances of Rome may be commemorated]   

Diocesan Prayer: All religious novices


Saturday 10th March

of the 3rd Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: Parish of St Edward the Confessor, Chandler’s Ford

(consecrated 10.3.1938, re-dedicated 8.10.1989)

Jubilee: Canon Peter Turbitt (ordained 10.3.1968)


Sunday 11th March  


Diocesan Prayer: Union of Catholic Mothers


Monday 12th March

of the 4th Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: The “Beginning Experience”


Tuesday 13th March

of the 4th Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: The Holy Father (elected 13.3.2013); Cold Ash Centre, Thatcham


Wednesday 14th March

of the 4th Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: Community of St Patrick, East Ilsley


Thursday 15th March

of the 4th Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: Community of St Patrick, Samarès, Jersey


Friday 16th March

of the 4th Week of Lent

Diocesan Prayer: Community of St Joseph, Gosport


Saturday 17th March

ST PATRICK, Bishop, feast

Diocesan Prayer: Parish of St Joseph, Bracknell


Forthcoming Events   

Sundays in Lent

The Mystery of the Holy Eucharist

(Series of talks preparing for Adoremus Eucharistic Congress)

Quarr Abbey

Read more


10th - 11th March 

Lenten Lamentations, Polish Lenten Devotions,
Polish Catholic Church, Reading

Read more 


Monday 9th April

Winchester Catholic History Group

The Chantry Chapels of Winchester Cathedral

St Peter's Winchester

Read more 


Saturday 28th March

Alton Day of Renewal

Alton Convent

Read more


Saturday 21st April

Holy Land Pilgrimage information session

Immaculate Conception & St Joseph Church, Christchurch

Read more 


Saturday 21st April (N.B. Change of date)

Alton Day of Renewal

Alton Convent

Read more


Wednesday 4th July
Feast day of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati
Celebration event at St Patrick's Soho
Read more


29th-30th September

Southampton Celebrate

St George Catholic College Southampton

Read more



Job Opportunities

Office Business Manager (English Martyrs, Reading)

Full time - 35 hours per week


English Martyrs, Reading Parish wishes to appoint an Office Business Manager to work in the Parish Office who will be the leading support staff professional assisting the Parish Priest in his duty to ensure that the Parish is fulfilling its mission of Evangelisation. The successful applicant will be responsible for managing the day-to-day function of the church site, Office, Finances and support functions of the Parish.


Closing date for applications:Monday 12th March (12 Noon)

Interviews: w/c Monday 19th March


For informal enquiries please contact the Parish Office on 0118 957 2149.


Read more 



Catholic Headteacher (St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, Ryde, IoW)


Are you a Headteacher looking for a new challenge or a Deputy /Assistant Head ready for your next career step? Then St Mary’s could be the school for you. St Mary’s is a single form entry primary school, within a Federation of Catholic Schools and situated in Ryde on the beautiful Isle of Wight. It is a happy, warm and caring school, which takes children from the age of 3 – 11. 


The Governors of St Mary’s are looking for an inspirational Catholic leader with the vision, and determination to progress the school to be securely good and beyond. For more information visit: https://www.tes.com/jobs/vacancy/headteacher-ryde-isle-of-wight-1042426


Closing date for applications: Monday 26th March 2018.





Please pray for...

The work of the New Evangelisation across the diocese that we may all play our part in bringing people closer to Jesus Christ through His Church.


The repose of the souls of all who have died recently and for all those killed through acts of warfare, violence, terrorism and natural disaster, for all departed clergy and people of the diocese and for all the Faithful Departed. Requiescant in pace.


Archbishop Cornelius and the clergy and people of our twin diocese of Bamenda, for an end to the troubles there.

The Unity of all Christians in doctrine, life and worship.

The Canonisation of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati, Patron of our Youth.

Vocations to all states of life and ministry in the Church, especially to the Sacred Priesthood, Diaconate and Religious Life, for all our students currently in formation for ordination.

The work of all Evangelisation Strategy Teams across our Diocese and the Holy Spirit's guidance on the formation of the new Diocesan Pastoral Council.

Those entering the "Called and Gifted" process and for the work of the Called & Gifted Team.

The work of our Marriage and Family Life Team.

All the sick clergy and people in our Diocese who are in need of our prayers.

Peace in the world and for those who govern the nations that they may do so wisely and justly and for an equitable share of the world's resources. 

All those suffering in the world through hunger, disease, persecution and natural disaster, for all refugees and victims of modern slavery and human trafficking.

The work of the Apostleship of the Sea, Caritas Diocese of Portsmouth, Caritas Jersey, CAFOD and those with whom they work.


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



Do you have some good news to share?

I would like to encourage all readers to send in items for the e-News about events in parishes, pastoral areas and schools about the many sacramental celebrations and general good news about people in the diocese.


I often hear much Good News from many people - do share it with us so we can share it with others in the diocese.


Thanks, of course, to all who already contribute articles for the e-News on an occasional or regular basis.


Please e-mail all news items by Friday for consideration for the following week's issue to: executiveassistant@portsmouthdiocese.org.uk 


Please send news as plain text and images as attachments rather than embedded in a document.


If you have a Parish or Diocesan event to advertise, please complete this form.



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Don't forget you can keep in touch in between issues of e-News by following my Twitter account.


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With all good wishes and an assurance of my prayers,
In Corde Iesu


Bishop of Portsmouth


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