Pope Francis, in Evangelii Gaudium, calls us to a special care for the poor.
As a hall-mark of this pontificate, the Poor are already a planned feature of our
Year of Renewal, and our Parish has a dozen current projects for the poor and needy:
6 months rental for a homeless Parishioner; Clothes for babies saved from abortion:
Pre-Advent (& pre-Lent) Charity Fayres; Concert & Collection for Filipino typhoon victim;
Part-funding abuse victim parishioners for the Grief to Grace programme; SVP outreach
Christmas gifts for needy children; Ecumenical Winter Homeless Night Shelter;
the local Food Bank; Street Pastors; our on-going ACN and other overseas projects, etc.
4th Sunday of Advent, 22nd Dec.
Blessing of Bambini at all Masses.9.30am Mass concludes with
Childrens’ Carols and Nativity Tableau.
(NB. Not at the Christmas Eve Vigil Mass when the Childrens’ Liturgy leaders & many families are away.) Christmas Eve, Tuesday 24th Dec.
5.30pm Vigil Mass of Christmas Eve
11.30pm Office of Readings & Carols
leading into Midnight Mass. Christmas Day, Wednesday 25th
Midnight Mass (starts at Midnight)
(preceded by the Office of Readings & Carols)
and Blessing of the Crib
8am Mass of Christmas Dawn & Carols
9.30am Mass of Christmas Day & Carols
11.30am Solemn Mass of
Christmas Day with Carols.
NB. There is no 5.30 evening Mass on Christmas Day Sunday 29th December Feast of the Holy Family
All Masses at the weekend usual times.
Make sure that your home has a CHRISTMAS CRIB
on sale in our Bookshop in various sizes and at very reasonable prices.
Then, on the weekend before Christmas (21st /22nd December),
bring the Baby Jesus from your Family Crib for the Blessing of Bambini at all Masses on the 4th Sunday of Advent.
Gifts for Christmas and the New Year
Could you buy an extra gift for a needy child or baby?
Bring your gifts to Mass on the 3rd Sunday of Advent,
ie. NEXT weekend – 14th / 15th December.
Gifts should be wrapped with a label indicating gender and age (0-15 years).
The Good Counsel Network also needs baby blankets & baby clothes (0-12 months)
These NEW baby items should not be gift-wrapped but left in their original packaging.
Please leave your gifts and baby items in the coloured boxes at our usual
drop-off point just inside the doors of the Pastoral Centre corridor.
I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see thee hungry and feed thee, or thirsty and give thee drink? And when did we see thee a stranger and welcome thee, or naked and clothe thee? And when did we see thee sick or in prison and visit thee?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brethren, you did it to me.’
Premier Radio blue bags will be available for every household from the weekend of 30th November / 1st December for you to bring Food Bank items the following weekend (7/8th Dec). More details next week, so start collecting tinned & packet food so that we can help those who are struggling to buy food.
The ONLY items needed are:
Milk (long-life or powdered) fruit juice or squash (fresh and long-life), Sponge pudding (tinned) Biscuits or snack bars, Instant or tinned potato Tinned meat / fish, Sugar (500g bags) Rice pudding, Instant coffee, Tea bags.
Gifts for Christmas and the New Year
Could you buy an extra gift for a needy child or baby? Bring your gifts to Mass on the 3rd Sunday of Advent, the weekend of 14th / 15th December. This year, as well as Christmas presents, we are collecting new baby blankets and new baby clothes (0-12 months) which will be used by a little one throughout the coming year. Please leave the baby blankets, unwrapped, in the original packaging. All other gifts should be wrapped with a label indicating gender and age (0-15 years). Please leave your gifts in the coloured boxes at our usual drop-off point just inside the doors of the Pastoral Centre corridor. The gifts will be divided (as in the past few years) between The Good Counsel Network and the Westminster Catholic Children’s Society. Thank you, in advance, for your generosity.
Our St Vincent de Paul Society
invites you to join them in visiting the sick, needy and lonely in our Parish and in various caring projects. Find details here, or via the Parish Office on: 020 8942 2602 or email: email@example.com
Our Parish is currently involved in four projects to help the homeless and hungry:
Anonymous provision of 6 months rental for an otherwise homeless Parishioner.
Our Annual Pre-Advent Charity Fayre – this weekend…
Involved in the local Food Bank, and vouchers for those too poor to buy food.
Preparations for our annual participation in the ecumenical Winter Night Shelter. St Joseph’s Parishioners also serve as Street Pastors, and in various other caring missions.
To mark the transition from the Year of Faith (ends 24th November) to our Parish Year of Renewal (leading to Years of Rededication and Mission) we are showing this new film, FAITH OF OUR FATHERS, at 7pm on Sunday 1st December (the Feast Day of St Ralph Sherwin and his Companions, Martyrs of the Venerable English College in Rome)as a special feature for our Take A Stand (World Youth Day) young Catholics and for all Parishioners (and your invited Catholic and non-Catholic friends).
During the ‘English Reformation’ hundreds of brave men and women suffered persecution to cling to the Catholic Faith that had been integral to the life of this nation for over a thousand years. Many were heavily fined, exiled or imprisoned. Priests, or anyone assisting a Priest, could expect the death sentence. Fr Marcus Holden & Fr Nicholas Schofield lead us on a journey to discover more about these Saints, the times in which they lived, and their significance for Catholics today.
From the lives of well-known Saints like Thomas More, Margaret Clitherow and Edmund Campion, to lesser-known figures, the message of the English Martyrs is re-presented for a contemporary audience. It is a message of great Faith and profound courage. Along the way we discover places such as Stonor Park and Wardley Hall, Tyburn & Rievaulx Abbey.
Interviews with Archbishop Vincent Nichols, Bishop Terence Brain, Lord Camoys and others help to re-tell the stories of those who laid down their lives to preserve the Faith of Our Fathers. These heroic Catholics help to encourage and inspire us in living our Catholic Faith in this same land, amidst the challenges of our own times, and for the New Evangelization.
“Potius hodie quam cras, as Saint Ralph Sherwin said when asked to take the missionary oath, “rather today than tomorrow”. These words aptly convey his burning desire to keep the flame of faith alive in England, at whatever personal cost. Those who have truly encountered Christ are unable to keep silent about him.”
Pope Emeritus Benedict to the students of the Venerable English College on the occasion of being received in Private Audience, 3rd December 2012.
Audience In December 2012, the students of the Venerable English College in Rome were granted a private audience with Pope Emeritus Benedict in the ‘Sala Clementina’ of the Apostolic Palace. At that audience, Pope Benedict venerated the relic of St Ralph Sherwin, protomartyr of the Venerable English College’s forty-four martyrs. Nearly all of these martyrs died for the Faith in their early twenties by being hanged, drawn and quartered. When news of a martyrdom reached Rome, the students sang a ‘Te Deum’ before the C16 ‘Martyrs’ Picture’ in the College Church. Undaunted, many of those who sang the Te Deum would themselves return to their homeland and receive ‘their own’ Te Deum in praise of the God who gave them the grace to clothe themselves in the white robes, washed clean in the ‘Blood of the Lamb’ (Cf. Apoc. 7:13ff).