Year of Faith Pilgrimage to Littlemore and Oxford

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Our Parish YEAR OF FAITH PILGRIMAGES  continue on Monday 28th October (please note change of date from 14th) to Blessed John Henry Newman’s Rooms at Littlemore College, and the Oxford Oratory Newman Shrine. Coach seats are £25.  Please book and pay the Parish Office by next Sunday, 29th September.
 

Why I am Catholic

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Why I am Catholic is the title of a series of articles which we hope that St Joseph’s Parishioners will write for our Sunday Bulletin during the remainder of this Year of Faith (and beyond), to share their faith journey and encourage us all in our own way .  Each submission should be 400-500 words and will be published anonymously (although Fr Peter needs to know the authors).  Send to him at:   stjoseph-newmalden@btinternet.com
[vimeo http://vimeo.com/51872906]

Grief to Grace

Christmas
At all Sunday Masses on 22nd September, Fr Dominic Allain will make an appeal on behalf of Grief to Graceof which he is the International Pastoral Director.
Grief to Grace is a psychological and spiritual programme for anyone who has suffered degradation or violation through physical, sexual, emotional or spiritual abuse.  It is appropriate for those who have endured sexual abuse, rape, incest or other forms of traumatic violation in childhood, adolescence or as an adult, including those who have suffered abuse by a member of the clergy. Grief to Grace invites the healing ministry of Jesus Christ through prayer and sacraments, and by providing skilled behavioural health services for victims of abuse, with professional excellence, Christian integrity and compassion. Our five-day residential programmes provide a process for helping victims of abuse to discover spiritual healing and transformation. Grief to Grace was created to end the isolation and secrets of abuse within a healing process that is fully centered on the person and presence of Jesus Christ, the Divine Physician.  For more details see:  www.grieftograce.org Today’s appeal raises awareness and seeks Grief to Grace “Co-operators” to support and enable this apostolate in various small but significant ways.

Some Testimonies:

Once I arrived, with much fear and trepidation, and began to enter into the process I cried tears from depths I didn’t know I possessed. Hearing the stories from others helped me to access deep emotions I was burying or trying to deny. The exercise of drawing a picture of ourselves as God created us, then depicting the damage from the abuse onto our image was very powerful. I didn’t realize how that distorted image of who I was had sent my life on a trajectory and formed patterns that were not God’s plan for me. Only by realizing that, could I begin to change my expectations and allow Him to rebuild my self image… Click to Read this Entire Testimony

In my deacon year, 2003, word of the Boston priest scandal spread across the country and the world. The seminary I attended, talked about this, taught about this, gave conferences and seminars about this ad nauseam. I had never revealed my own abuse at the hands of a priest that started with the grooming process in 1980 and culminated with the first physical, sexual contact in August 1982…Click to Read this Entire Testimony

Through this journey has always been a deep struggle within me regarding a feeling of shame and unworthiness. It was never the kind of thing that was overt but rather always an undercurrent running through my life. It created in me a deep sense of loneliness and isolation. I found it extremely difficult to develop deep and meaningful relationships with others, to share feelings, or be myself around others…Click to Read this Entire Testimony

I want to share with you the graces that I received and the depth of healing that occurred in my life in those three days of retreat. I grew up in a home that looked quite “normal” on the outside, but due to my father’s anger, rages, and abuse, my family suffered much on the inside. Throughout my childhood and most of my adult years, I lived in denial about what had happened in my family of origin. I was unable and unwilling to confront the abuse that my mother, my siblings, and I had endured. I wore ‘rose colored glasses’, so to speak… Click to Read this Entire Testimony

“Totally awesome! So Christ – centered and spiritual! It has been an incredible gift to go on this healing journey. There was so much love and acceptance radiated to each hurting man and woman.”

“I can’t believe how much better I feel. It seems like the Lord changes you more when you do really not want to be taught. I appreciated all the sharing. It was great to hear others responses. This experience was wonderful. Thank you.”

“Inspiring! It gave each of us a chance for new life. I loved the Living Scriptures!”

“Because of this retreat, I don’t hate God anymore.”

“Each and every one of the Living Scriptures was so anointed. I loved each of the activities/exercises that followed. A “hands-on” experience that penetrated to the soul – the water, the rocks, the pictures of our wounded selves we affixed to the cross– all so powerful. The journey through the Sorrowful mysteries and joining in the suffering of Jesus was very healing for me.”

“Incredible! Each session went deeper and pulled my emotions up and out of the darkness. I have never been on a retreat like this. Your insight and knowledge is amazing. You seemed to cover most areas in the lives of abused women. Only the spirit working in you could have created something such as this. Thank you!”

“This retreat was specific to my personal needs in woundedness – which nothing has ever touched so completely – even though I have worked for 18 years on inner healing issues through therapy, Al-anon, Life in the Spirit Seminars, contemplative prayer and journaling.”

“To be completely honest, I did not want to come to this retreat. I was hardened as I walked in. But this retreat really opened me up. The Holy Spirit spoke to me so clearly and beautifully. It really started the healing process and a new confidence in me. The only thing I wish was different is that the retreat was one day longer. This has truly changed my life.”

“It was more than I could imagine. The exercises made it so real.”

“The Living Scriptures were so moving and facilitated the work. I appreciated the liberating of my inner child and a chance to respond to the Holy Spirit. The Living Scriptures were incredible, especially the one where Jesus gave me Mary. The transformation! Wow!”

“It was very powerful in every respect. The multi dimensional aspects of this retreat provided so many ways in which God could touch our lives and speak his truth to us. As difficult as it was to hear some of the stories of participants, it was necessary and important part of the process.”

“From Grief to Grace is an amazingly spiritual experience. A journey involving safety, bonds, connection, merging of hearts, grieving together towards transformation. A wonderful instrument for healing of those with sexual abuse wounds! This is an extraordinary opportunity to live through Christ’s redemptive work.”

 

Ecumenical Winter Night Shelter

St Joseph’s is again hosting the Ecumenical Winter Night Shelter for the Homeless on Monday nights from January 20th to February 24th 2014.
If you could help please contact Rosemary Matters on 020 8949 3556 or by email:  rosemarymatters@hotmail.co.uk.   Rosemary will soon be contacting our regular volunteers. Thank you to everyone who has contributed in any way in previous years.

The World's Biggest Coffee Morning!

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Friday, 27th September

St Joseph’s UCM Coffee Morning, after the 10am Mass, in our Pastoral Centre, supports the Macmillan Cancer Charity which provides hope and help to many cancer patients and their families, and is very appreciative of fund-raising that is done on their behalf.
Please do some baking for the Cake Sale, and donate items for the Raffle.

27th September – UPDATE

Thank you to EVERYONE who made it such a successful event! Today’s coffee morning raised £1,104.53 towards the wonderful work of Macmillan Cancer Support!
Here are some pictures from today’s fabulous Coffee Morning.
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New Polish Toddler Group at St Joseph’s

A New Polish Toddler Group at St Joseph’s started last Thursday, 10.30 – 11.30am for babies and toddlers aged 0-5 years, and meets on 1st and 3rd Thursdays.
The focus, songs and conversation are in Polish, but everyone is welcome!

40 Days for Life – Twickenham

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Get involved – HELP SAVE LIFE!!

Starts this Wednesday (25th September) and continues until Sunday 3rd November. For 40 days we will pray, fast and hold a peaceful, prayerful, pro-life vigil outside the BPAS abortion facility in Twickenham – praying for the babies and their mothers and also for staff of the clinic.  Get involved – HELP SAVE LIFE!!  Sign up to participate in our local vigil by clicking here: Vigil Schedule.
This will be the largest and longest internationally coordinated pro-life mobilization in history.  40 Days for Life vigils have saved 7,536 unborn babies and their mothers from abortion, 83 abortion workers had a conversion of heart, and 39 abortion facilities closed down.  During this year’s Lenten campaign in London 36 unborn babies were saved from abortion, and the BPAS abortion centre in Bedford Square stopped performing abortions this year in June.
For more information contact Justina on:  020 7723 1740 or 0754 028 6688
and visit the website at:  www.40daysforlife.com/twickenham

Get the latest updates

Be sure to sign-up for updates and prayer requests via the 40 Days for Life website to find out how YOU can help make a lifesaving impact as part of the local 40 Days for Life campaign.
For information about the campaign in Polish, please see 40 Dni dla Zycia – Informacja po polsku.
For information about other 40 Days for Life campaigns in the UK, please see the 40 Days for Life blog.

Support this local effort

Want to help financially assist your local 40 Days for Life effort? Get in touch with Justina on:  020 7723 1740 or 0754 028 6688 to find out how you can help to make a difference right here in our community.
Learn more about the national 40 Days for Life campaign.

The Why? Course

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This new and exciting three-part introduction to the Catholic Faith has clear, straightforward Answers to important, major Questions –  Why God?  Why Christ?  Why the Church?  next Sunday 29th  September (7-8pm), Friday 4th October (8-9pm), and Sunday 6th October (7-8pm) respectively.  This will answer any of your own questions on Christian basics, and enable you to engage with those of others faiths – and none – especially in this Year of Faith and for the New Evangelisation.  Also, if you’re thinking about becoming a Catholic or returning to the Church – start here!  Similarly if you’re an adult preparing for Confirmation or, like all of us, wanting to deepen your understanding of the Faith – start here!