Blessed Robert Grissold Catholic Church

A Community based on Faith, Altar and the Word

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Welcome to the website of Blessed Robert Grissold Catholic Church in Balsall Common. Here you can find details of the parish, our latest newsletter, services and sacraments offered by the Church and, in our parish archive, the events we have held. As a parish we value your privacy. Please follow the link here to learn more about the privacy policy that covers all catholic churches in the Archdiocese of Birmingham,
Christmas 2019 Services

If you are looking for our mass times for Christmas 2019, click
here
Father Frank writes
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My dear brothers and sisters in Christ, friends, I trust that you are keeping well. Although we cannot gather for the Mass at the present time, I believe it would be good if we could all be praying together as a community on Sundays, at 9.30 am, the usual time of the Mass praying for one another, for our country and world at this time of disease and sickness. To this end I have suggested below how we might make a Spiritual Communion together. I will say the Mass at 9.30 am on Sundays offering the intentions that have already been requested. I will also offer those intentions that have already been accepted through the week and, of course, it goes without saying that I will be praying especially for our community. Please take the time to read the suggestion below. In this time of quarantine, we might all share in prayer and making a Spiritual Communion on Sunday mornings - joined to the Eucharistic Christ and to one another.
Sunday 25th October 2020

Notice regarding the re-opening of the church for Mass

Dear Parishioners

I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances. You are in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass.

As I wrote last week, due to my underlying health conditions, and in compliance with my doctor’s advice, I intend to celebrate Mass in the church, with the congregation seated and receiving Holy Communion the other side of the glass partition. A revised Risk Assessment has been submitted and everything is in place for Mass to be celebrated with the various teams of volunteer Stewards, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, Cleaners and Counters
this Sunday 25th October at the usual time of 9.30 a.m. Circumstances permitting, Mass on Sundays thereafter will be celebrated at the usual time. In the first instance Mass will be on a first-come-first-served basis. There is a maximum capacity of 30.

I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion on this website and keep you informed of any developments concerning the parish.

If you feel anyone would be comforted by knowing that the Church is praying for them, please contact me - I can offer the Mass for them or include them in the prayers of the Mass.

Please find below an order of service for making a Spiritual Communion.

With all good wishes and every blessing

Fr Frank



Masses at Blessed Robert Grissold in Time of COVID-19
+ Attendees must wear a mask
+ Remain 2 metres apart
+ Sanitise hands on entering and exiting the Church
+ Follow the signs
+ Always follow the stewards’ instructions

Holy Communion
+ All responses during the Mass to be whispered
+ Single file queue for Holy Communion (in one kind only) - please follow Steward’s guidance.
+ The Host to be received in silence, on outstretched hand
+ Masks to be worn to receive the Host
+ Leave the church immediately after consuming the Host
Please do not congregate in the car park after leaving the church

During Mass there will be no:
+ Altar servers
+ Readers
+ Children’s liturgy
+ Offertory procession
+ Sign of peace
+ Parish missals, misalettes or hymn books
+ Singing
+ Passing of collection bags
+ No flowers

Please stay at home if...
+ You are feeling ill or show any symptoms
+ You suspect you may be ill or have been exposed to Covid 19
+ You have a sick family member at home
+ You have come into contact with someone who is infected

Those attending will be asked to supply contact details for track and trace

Please Note:
+ The Church will be cleaned after each Mass
+ In the first instance, attendance will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Once capacity (30 persons) has been reached the stewards will prevent entry
+ Wrap up warm - doors will be left open to increase ventilation wherever possible
+ All areas of the church, apart from the narthex and hall area during Mass, are out of bounds until further notice

Making a Spiritual Communion *

25th October 2020
THIRTIETH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
Mass intention: People of the Parish



Create a prayerful setting through the placing of a crucifix, Bible, statues, icons, etc Then follow this order of service:

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen


Read the
Entrance Antiphon

Let the hearts that seek the Lord rejoice:
turn to the Lord and his strength;
constantly seek his face.

In silent prayer call to mind your sins then make the following penitential act:

You were sent to heal the contrite of heart: Lord have mercy
You came to call sinners: Christ have mercy
You are seated at the right hand of the Father to intercede for us:
Lord have mercy

Gloria

Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to people of good will.

We praise you,
we bless you,
we adore you,
we glorify you,
we give you thanks for your great glory,
Lord God, heavenly King,
O God, almighty Father.

Lord Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son,
Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father,
you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us;
you take away the sins of the world, receive our prayer;
you are seated at the right hand of the Father, have mercy on us.
For you alone are the Holy One,
you alone are the Lord,
you alone are the Most High, Jesus Christ,
with the Holy Spirit, in the glory of God the Father. Amen.


Pray the Collect (the Opening Prayer of the Mass of the day)

Almighty ever-living God,
grant that we may always conform our will to yours
and serve your majesty in sincerity of heart.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

First Reading: From the book of Exodus chapter 22, verses 20-26

Responsorial Psalm:
R. I love you, Lord, my strength

I love you, Lord, my strength, my rock, my fortress, my saviour.
My God is the rock where I take refuge; my shield, my mighty help, my stronghold.
The Lord is worthy of all praise: when I call I am saved from my foes.
R.

Long life to the Lord, my rock!
Praised be the God who saves me.
He has given great victories to his king
and shown his love to his anointed.
R.

Second Reading:
From the first letter of St Paul to the Thessalonians, Chapter 1, verses: 5-10

Gospel: A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew

When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees they got together and, to disconcert him, one of them put a question, ‘Master, which is the greatest commandment of the Law?’ Jesus said, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment. The second resembles it: you must love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments hang the whole Law, and the Prophets also.’

Reflection

In the Gospel today we find Jesus’ summary of the Law and the Prophets - indeed of all the scriptures and of the Christian life. In the end, according to Jesus, it all comes down to love - which is not surprising when we remember that the Evangelist tells us that God, who is the beginning and end of all things, is Himself love.

Our God, who is love, created humanity for one purpose: in order that He might live in loving union with us. This manifests the awesome humility of Almighty God - who is the source of life and who reveals himself most fully in Christ, who, though equal with God, emptied Himself to come to us and become one of us - even to accepting the humiliation and suffering of the Cross. This loving purpose of our God - His Divine passion for His creation, often finds expression in the Scriptures in terms of a marriage. Indeed, the Bible begins and ends with a marriage - In Genesis with the union of Adam and Eve and in the Book of Revelation, with the marriage of the Lamb of God to His Bride - the Church.

St Augustine reminds us that this is what we were made for - God made us for Himself and because of the way we are made, our souls are restless until we enjoy that rest in Him which comes through loving union. The saints are those who have proved that such union with God is possible - the sort of wonderful union Jesus spoke of when He prayed: ‘That they be one as we are one. As you are in Me, Father, and I in You, so may they be also in Us.’

The Christian life is about growth in this loving union with God - through which we ‘taste’, ‘more and more, that the Lord is good’ and more and more learn to love Him with ‘all our heart, with all our soul and with all our mind.’ And growing in this loving intimacy with God - who loves
all his creatures - we grow also in our love of all our neighbours.

This loving union, spoken of and known by the saints, is not reserved to those in holy or religious orders - is not reserved to priests, monks and nuns. God is the Father of
all and He desires that all people should enjoy that union with Him for which we were made.

The way to the realisation of this loving spiritual marriage is revealed in the Scriptures and in the lives and teachings of the saints. To miss out on this loving union with God, is to miss out on our
true destiny and happiness because love is the beginning and end of all things.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us

Immaculate Heart of Mary, have mercy on us

Saints Michael, Raphael and Gabriel, pray for us

Ss Simon and Jude, pray for us

St Margaret Mary, pray for us

Blessed Robert Grissold, pray for us

Our Lady of the Rosary, pray for us

Pray the Creed

I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
was crucified, died and was buried;
He descended into hell;
on the third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
and is seated at the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and life everlasting. Amen

Offer up Prayers of Intercession for the Church, for the world, for our community, for the sick and for those who have died - and offer up your own intentions.

A Prayer in time of sickness and disease:

All powerful and merciful God,
our refuge and our shield,
bring healing to all those suffering as a result of sickness and disease.
Guard and protect us from all harm
and assist those whose skill and art can put an end to this affliction.
Through Christ our Lord.

Ask for Our Lady’s prayers, saying the Hail Mary…

Pray the
Lord’s Prayer: Our Father…

Pray the Agnus Dei:

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, grant us peace.

Make a Spiritual Communion* - asking Our Lord Jesus Christ to come into your heart and feed you with heavenly grace so that you might be one with Him. You can use the following prayer of St Alphonsus Liguori:

My Jesus, I believe that You are truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as being already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

Ask for God’s blessing and protection:

May the Lord bless us and keep us from all evil and bring us to everlasting life. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen

Make the sign of the Cross saying:

+ In the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen

Finish with the Prayer to St Michael:

Holy Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our defence against the wickedness and snares of the Devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust down into hell Satan and all other evil spirits who prowl about the world for the ruin of souls. Amen




+++


* A Spiritual Communion can be made if one has a deep desire to receive Our Lord and to be one with him - even if one cannot, for whatever reason, receive him sacramentally. Spiritual Communion is an act of love and desire to be united with Christ and is a means of drawing on the life of the Holy Spirit dwelling within our souls.

The Church teaches us that we can receive Our Lord Jesus Christ in spiritual communion if we have a great desire to receive him and to feed on him, the spiritual heavenly bread, through our longing for the Blessed Sacrament. In spiritual communion we invite Our Lord Jesus Christ into our hearts.

In this way we can receive the graces and blessings of the Blessed Sacrament even in those circumstances where we are unable to receive Christ in Holy Communion. And the good news is that we can make a spiritual communion several times a day. Indeed, St Maximillian Kolbe, whose Feast we celebrate this week, endeavoured to make a spiritual communion - asking Our Eucharistic Lord - to come to him every fifteen minutes - every time his clock chimed.

St Teresa said: “Spiritual Communion is very profitable, therefore do not omit it for by it the Lord learns how much you love him.”

I will post the Sunday Collects, and Readings week by week on the parish website.

I hope this has proved helpful. Please don’t feel bound by these suggestions
- if you have your own better way of staying in prayerful and close spiritual communion with Our Lord then, of course, follow it.

Be assured of my prayers - please keep me in yours. Remember that the Rosary is a most powerful means of prayer.

With all good wishes and every blessing

Fr Frank

***



Weekday Spiritual Communion

You can use the format for Sunday’s Spiritual Communion for daily worship and prayer. The Sunday Collect and scripture readings can be used throughout the week but if you prefer you might like to use the Gospel of the day - I will supply the scripture references for these. Also, please don’t forget the supreme value of praying the Rosary daily.



Gospel readings for Week 30 in Ordinary Time

Mon 26 Oct Luke 13: 10-17
Tues 27 Luke 13; 18-21
Wed 28
Feast of Ss Simon and Jude, Apostles
Luke 6: 12-19
Thurs 29 Luke 13: 31-35
Fri 30 Luke 14: 1-6
Sat 31 Luke 14: 1, 7-11

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Update on Coronavirus restrictions in Solihull Borough as of 18th October 2020

Unfortunately the number of confirmed cases is increasing in Balsall and Berkswell parishes. Following a weekly meeting with the Director of Public Health for Solihull Borough Council, the following article has been released by our local Coronavirus Community Champion, Andrew Burrows.

KeyPoints18Oct2020

100 Club Draw

John McLellan and Chris Burleigh have just done a Zoom draw for the 100 Club, the results of the 3rd 100 Club draw for 2020, conducted using a random generator on a Zoom call with John McLellan, as follows:

1st 19 Tracey McAtammney £75
2nd 78 Kathy Jones £45
3rd 82 Judith Gibbs £30

Congratulations to the winners!

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Happy 75th Birthday Father Sebastian Arikat
Father Sebastian Arikat was our Priest in charge from 2004 to 2010. On the 5th November 2020 he will reaching his retirement age of 75 years and on 5th January 2021 he will beginning his golden jubilee year as a priest. Friends of Father Sebastian in India are putting together a "Appreciation to Father Sebastian Arikat" and we were asked to provide an article remembering his time and ministry with us.

The article is reproduced below and is based on an original article written by Godfrey Chesshire with some additions by Ellie Clarke.

The Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary on 15th August 2004 was a memorable day for the parishioners of the parish of Blessed Robert Grissold in Balsall Common. It was on that day that Father Sebastian Arikat became our Priest in Charge. It is possible that few of his new parishioners were then aware of the state of Kerala let alone where about in the Indian Sub-Continent it was.

Soon we had the pleasure of meeting some of the Keralan people who had come to live and work in the UK, as our small but modern church building became a base for some of the prayer meetings, training events and retreats that Father Sebastian organised. In addition to his duties as our priest, and as chaplain to the Catholic secondary school in the nearby town of Solihull, Father Sebastian had come to the UK to be Spiritual Director for the Jesus Youth – a missionary movement that was well-established in India, but which was still in its infancy in the UK when he arrived.

In addition to the events held at our church, Father offered immense support to night vigils, prayer meetings and retreats for Keralans in the UK, often travelling across the country in his tiny car to participate in them. To support the young families in the ministry, for whom travel was difficult, Father Sebastian would drive over and visit them, to offer support. Particularly, he would visit families experiencing sickness or awaiting the birth of a child. In the later years, the ministry required to be registered as a charity, and Father played a vital role in this process as well. Father’s home next to our church was always open to members for personal retreats, meetings and pit-stops on journeys, and he showed great hospitality, cooking meals and praying for and with them.

In our own parish, Father Sebastian also gave an enormous amount of pastoral care and influence. He is still fondly remembered for his inspiring and thoughtful homilies – many of which began with a joke or an amusing story, which Father clearly enjoyed telling as much as we enjoyed hearing them. Many of our sick and older housebound parishioners were deeply moved by the peace and tranquillity he has brought into their homes. We have seen the joy and pleasure in his eyes as he receives the offerings from the children after they have participated in their liturgy group or when our young children’s choir sang at mass.

Under Father Sebastian’s guidance, the parish thrived. His ministry included “CaFE (Catholic Faith Exploration) courses to get small groups of Catholics thinking, talking and praying about their faith, house masses during Lent. A parish website was created, and Seasonal newsletters at Christmas and Easter were produced, featuring news and photos from the parish, and always started with a seasonal message from Father himself. Father was even a podcaster before it became fashionable! – his Advent and Lent sermons were recorded, along with the gospel reading, and made available to download from the parish website.

Our parish benefitted in many ways from Father’s work with his Keralan community. It was a pleasure to welcome some of his many guests to our Sunday masses, and, on occasions, to enjoy music provided by some of the members of Jesus Youth. Several Keralan priests (mostly former students of Father Sebastian) celebrated with us, and we were even honoured with a visit from Father Sebastian’s bishop. When Jesus Youth needed to undertake fund-raising, Fr Sebastian organised popular “curry nights” for our parishioners, with food and entertainment provided by the Keralan community.

Of course, combining all of these different responsibilities was a great deal of work, but Father Sebastian undertook his duties with joy and enthusiasm, focussing on pastoral care and delegating other tasks where he could. He enlisted many willing helpers – as one member of our parish commented “When Father gives you a job to do, he does it with such grace that you’re not only happy to do it, you feel honoured that he chose you!”

At the end of 2010 Father Sebastian was called back to Kerala by his bishop, and Father Soji Olikkal took over his duties at our church and for the Keralans in the UK. We were delighted to welcome Father Sebastian back to our church for a visit in 2014, and the joyful mass he concelebrated was a tribute to the gratitude and great affection our parishioners still feel for him.

Ellie Clarke, October 2020 (based on an original article by Godfrey Chesshire)
St George and St Teresa Catholic Primary School Virtual Open Day
Notification of virtual open mornings at St George and St Teresa Catholic Primary School in Bentley Heath, Solihull. You can find out more at www.

Open Morning 2020
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Update on Coronavirus restrictions in Solihull Borough as of 13th October 2020

You will be aware that the Government has updated the rules on coronavirus and social mixing in a way that will impact our Borough. Please find attached a newsletter explaining what this means for us.

Coronavirus13October2020

Midland Charities Association Christmas card shops
Due to the ongoing Covid19 situation, we have reluctantly decided not to open the Midland Charities Association Christmas card shop in Balsall Common or Allesley Park libraries this year. We are hoping to be able to sell cards from home for a limited number of charities as well as some sundry items such as wrapping paper, gift tags, money wallets etc. In order to do this, we would need to take orders in advance. If you would be interested in buying your cards in this way, please speak to Janice or Bob on 01676 534407 or email mcacards20@yahoo.com

I would like to thank both volunteers and customers for all your support over the years. We will make every effort to open the shops as normal in 2021 if the situation allows. 

Best wishes, Janice
HELP TO OPEN THE CHURCH

Before the church is opened there are a number of actions that have be performed as shown below in Fathers Frank's comments of the 2nd August 2020.

If you are willing to help with this, especially if you are under 70 can you please get in touch with:
  • Joe Martin for Stewarding (by phone on 01676534916)
  • Louise Perry for cleaning, again by phone
Alternatively, you can use the Contact us form on the parish website by clicking here.

As soon as Father Frank has made a decision when Masses will start we will get in touch with you to make arrangements.
PHISHING EMAIL IS NOT FROM FATHER FRANK

An email has been received by a number of parishioners that appears to be from Father Frank. Although it looks like it's from Father Frank, the From: Address is incorrect (it may show parishpastor3667@gmail.com). The email has the following Title and Content:

Email Subject: Peace be with you

Email Content:

Good morning, how are you doing?

I need a favour from you, email me as soon as you get this message.

God Bless,
Fr. Frank Smith


Please do not respond to this email as it is not from Father Frank. it is, most likely a Phishing email to begin a conversation with you that will culminate in a request for money or your personal details.
Offertory Collections
Although there have been no services during lockdown, the usual expenses of maintaining the church have had to be met. Having been unable to attend church during this time, it has not been possible for those of us using envelopes or loose cash to contribute in the usual way. Standing orders have, however, continued as before and we are very grateful to those contributors for their ongoing support.

Envelopes/ Cash
When church attendance is possible again you may wish , but only if your circumstances permit, to catch up on missed offertory donations. You can do this by putting your cash/ cheque in your envelope or the loose plate. If you prefer you can pass a cheque to any of those listed below or post it in the church post box. If you bank on-line you could catch up with a one-off transfer on-line using the bank details shown below.

Standing Orders
In view of the continuing uncertain times and possibility of further lockdowns, you may consider switching to a standing order and not have to worry about having cash etc when coming to church or if ,perhaps, we are again unable to attend Mass. If you bank on-line, then it is probably easier and quicker to set up a standing order on-line. The parish bank account details are:

  • Natwest Bank
  • Sort Code 60- 19 – 14 Account No. 05960711
  • showing Blessed Robert Grissold (236) as recipient.

It does help if you let Bob Jones, Ciaran McSorley or John McLellan know what you have done, to make sure your standing order is reaching us alright. Alternatively you can download and complete the Standing Order/Gift Aid form
here. Only complete the Gift Aid section if you pay income tax and you are not already registered for Gift Aid Donations. When completed please pass the form to any of us listed below.

Finally
If you have any questions about church giving whether by envelope ,cash or standing order or if you need more information about Gift Aid, please don’t hesitate to contact any of us. Thank you for your past support of the parish and in anticipation of the future!
John McLellan (07908 089816)
Bob Jones (01676 532475)
Ciaran McSorley ( 01676 534784)
A Message from the Metropolitan Archbishops  of the Catholic Church in England   

A Message from the Metropolitan Archbishops of the Catholic Church in England

Dear Brothers and sisters in Christ, Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

On Tuesday we heard the announcement that, from the 4th July this year, places of worship will be able to reopen for prayer and services. We welcome this news with great joy. Since the lockdown began, members of all faiths have faced restrictions on how they have been able to celebrate important religious festivals. Our own experience of Easter was unlike any other we have known. Now, in our churches, and with our people, we can look forward again to celebrating the central mysteries of our faith in the Holy Eucharist. The recent reopening of our churches for individual private prayer was an important milestone on our journey towards resuming communal worship. Our churches that have opened have put in place all the measures needed to ensure the risks of virus transmission are minimised. This includes effective hand sanitisation, social distancing, and cleaning. We remain committed to making sure these systems of hygiene and infection control meet Government and public health standards.

We want to thank everyone within the Catholic community for sustaining the life of faith in such creative ways, not least in the family home. We thank our priests for celebrating Mass faithfully for their people, and for the innovative ways in which they have enabled participation through live-streaming and other means. We are grateful for the pastoral care shown by our clergy to those for whom this time of lockdown has been especially difficult, and, in particular, towards those who have been bereaved. We recognise too the chaplaincy services that have played a vital role in supporting those most in need.

Gaining from the experience of all that we have been through, and bringing those lessons into the future, we must now look forward. With the easing of restrictions on worship with congregations, we tread carefully along the path that lies ahead. Our lives have been changed by the experience of the pandemic and it is clear that we cannot simply return to how things were before lockdown. We remain centred on the Lord Jesus and His command at the Last Supper to “do this in memory of me.” We must now rebuild what it means to be Eucharistic communities, holding fast to all that we hold dear, while at the same time exploring creative ways to meet changed circumstances. It is important to reaffirm that, at present, the obligation to attend Sunday Mass remains suspended. A significant number of churches may remain closed as they are unable to meet the requirements for opening for individual prayer. Fulfilling these requirements is a precondition for any church opening after the 4th July for the celebration of Mass with a congregation.

Please be aware that there will be a limit on the number of people who can attend Mass in our churches. This will determined locally in accordance with social distancing requirements. We therefore need to reflect carefully on how and when we might be able to attend Mass. We cannot return immediately to our customary practices. This next step is not, in any sense, a moment when we are going ‘back to normal.’ We ask every Catholic to think carefully about how and when they will return to Mass. Our priests may need to consider whether it is possible to celebrate additional Masses at the weekends. Given there is no Sunday obligation, we ask you to consider the possibility of attending Mass on a weekday. This will ease the pressure of numbers for Sunday celebrations and allow a gradual return to the Eucharist for more people.

Moving forward, there will still be many people who cannot attend Mass in person. We therefore ask parishes, wherever possible, to continue live-streaming Sunday Mass, both for those who remain shielding and vulnerable, and also for those unable to leave home because of advanced age or illness. When we return to Mass there will some differences in how the celebration takes place. For the time being, there will be no congregational singing and Mass will be shorter than usual. None of this detracts from the centrality of our encounter with the Risen Christ in the Eucharist.

We ask everyone to respect and follow the guidance that will be issued and the instructions in each church. “As I have loved you,” said the Lord Jesus, “so you must love each other.” (Jn 13:34) The lockdown has brought forth remarkable acts of charity, of loving kindness, from Catholics across our communities as they have cared for the needy and vulnerable. We have seen love in action through charitable works, and through the service of many front-line key-workers who are members of our Church. Now we can begin to return to the source of that charity, Christ himself, present for us sacramentally, body, blood, soul and divinity, in Holy Communion. As we prepare to gather again to worship, let us, respectful of each other, come together in thanksgiving to God for the immense gift of the Holy Eucharist.

Yours devotedly in Christ

Vincent Cardinal Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster
Malcolm McMahon OP, Archbishop of Liverpool
Bernard Longley, Archbishop of Birmingham
John Wilson, Archbishop of Southwark

This letter is addressed to the Catholic Community in England; the opening of the Catholic Churches in Wales is devolved to the Welsh Assembly who are still evaluating their position on opening Places of Worship.
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CAFOD Coronavirus Emergency Appeal

CAFOD launched its coronavirus emergency appeal on 30 April. The effects of coronavirus on developing countries where CAFOD works are likely to be devastating. Families without enough to eat and without access to clean water and healthcare are particularly vulnerable to coronavirus. The poorest and most marginalised communities will be pushed further into poverty. Your prayers and gifts are needed now more than ever to help protect the lives of those in poor communities. While we are not able to hold physical collections in our church, you can donate as individuals at cafod.org.uk/coronavirusappeal.

The inequalities exposed by coronavirus is a matter of justice. We can do something about this crisis. We can use our voices here in the UK to tell our government to take practical, concrete actions to assist developing countries in the coronavirus response. Please help to sign our petition CAFOD coronavirus petition | CAFOD

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Bethany Food Bank Appeal

Please find below information about an appeal from G&T SVP. Can you please bring it to the attention of all the parishioners you are in contact with, and if they can donate any food etc it would great. It can be delivered to Lesley Murtagh at 36 Arden Close Balsall Common. If they can't get there if they let Joe Martin know he will go and collect it and take it around. There is also a collection box in Tesco in the Village. Please help us to help disadvantaged families in the area.

The Bethany Food Bank Appeal has produced a weekly newsletter showing their progress. You can find there below:





Easter Music during our Lockdown

Some of our parish musicians have recorded music to celebrate Holy Week and Easter. Even though we are unable to worship together as a parish, it's hoped that these will remind us of the importance the Easter Tridium in our lives. The first set are from Lesley and Katie Ritchie. Lesley is the Head Teacher of St. Augustine's catholic primary school in Kenilworth and sings and plays in our music group. She made these videos for the children who attend her school.

Songs from the Head Teacher's Living Room

Maundy Thursday

Fit My Video Tag

Good Friday

Fit My Video Tag

Holy Saturday

Fit My Video Tag

Easter Sunday

Fit My Video Tag
The next songs are from Hannah, Ellie and Ian Clarke. Ian and Ellie lead the Church Choir and Hannah is studying Music at Leeds University. They had been busy preparing some Easter music for the last week or so, quite unaware of Lesley and Katie's pieces! Their pieces consist of two old favourites: 'This is the Day' by Thomas Morley and 'Alleluia', a canon by Tim Brace and a new piece of choral music, composed for Easter by Hannah Clarke, called 'The Lord is truly Risen'.

Songs from the Music Room

Alleluia
by Tim Brace

Fit My Video Tag

This is the Day
by Thomas Morley

Fit My Video Tag

The Lord is truly Risen
by Hannah Clarke

Fit My Video Tag
Balsall Common Coronavirus Community Help

Please be aware of the following service available in Balsall Common. Please use the phone number or email address if you need any support.

covid support
MASS STREAMED ON THE INTERNET

Mass can be streamed directly from the internet. A number of churches in England and Ireland are available. Please visit this link to find out more.
Important notice from the Archdiocese concerning Safeguarding for all those supporting others in the community through this crisis

Email sent on behalf of Alan Hassall, Head of Safeguarding

Hello,

In light of the current COVID-19 outbreak and need for some households and those in certain high risk groups to self-isolate, we are aware of the good work that parishes may be undertaking to support parishioners through this crisis. I email today because there have been some questions about whether those volunteering need to have DBS checks so I wanted to provide some clarity.

The laws still apply as usual and so those working closely with those who are ill, elderly or disabled would still require DBS checks. However, where you are providing basic support such as dropping off food etc and this is not because the person themselves would be unable to do this but simply because they are following advice to self-isolate, then this would not require a DBS check. I would advise that volunteers keep minimal contact both for safeguarding and virus control measures and do not enter houses but leave shopping etc on the doorstep. Doing such activities in pairs can also offer reassurance, although again follow virus control guidance. Any payments for shopping etc must be very carefully managed and recorded.

Where parishioners have more complex needs and these are tasks which they are themselves unable to do, irrespective of the request to self-isolate, then, as with such activities under normal circumstances, a DBS check would be required. Volunteers who already have such a check (eg Parish Visitors) should be used to assist these groups.

We absolutely want to support the good activities in parishes to help those in need at this time and we can take a common sense approach as long as we stick to these safeguards, remember there could be some unscrupulous individuals who may wish to exploit such opportunities which is why the above needs to be followed. Think carefully about who is being asked do what and make sure everyone knows the expectations.

I hope this offers some clarity.

Regards,

Alan

Alan Hassall

Head of Safeguarding
Archdiocese of Birmingham
Cathedral House
St Chad’s
Queensway
BIRMINGHAM
B4 6EX
UPDATE ON CORONAVIRUS

The UK government has moved into Stage 2 of its response to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Diocese has provided guidance on changes we need to make to safeguard the health of our parish. Please click on this
link to learn more. These changes will be made with immediate effect and will be in place for the foreseeable future.
Diocesan Liturgical Guidelines in the light of the Coronavirus Pandemic

Until further notice THE CELEBRATION OF MASS WILL NOT BE PUBLIC IN ANY SETTING

Therefore there will be no Sunday or weekday Masses open to parishioners at Blessed Robert Grissold church from Friday 20th March 2020 until further notice.

Priests will celebrate the Mass privately. Mass intentions already accepted will be honoured and offered. ONLY PRIESTS MAY BE PRESENT FOR THE CELEBRATION OF THE MASS

The obligation for the faithful to attend Holy Mass on Sundays and Holydays of Obligation is removed until further notice. All the faithful are asked to make a Spiritual Communion during this time. To help with this there will be live-streaming of Masses on the Diocesan website
here. Please visit this website regularly for further updates.

As a Catholic community we should treasure the power of prayer during these challenging times and pray for the world and its needs; pray for our country at this time of uncertainty and sickness; pray for families and communities to which we belong; and pray for ourselves.

Merciful God,
come to the help of your people.
Be our shelter in this time of peril
and strengthen the bonds of our community.
Bring healing to all who suffer the ravages of disease
and assist those whose skill and art
can put an end to this affliction.
Through Christ our Lord.
UPDATE ON CORONAVIRUS

The UK government has moved into Stage 2 of its response to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Diocese has provided guidance on changes we need to make to safeguard the health of our parish. Please click on this
link to learn more. These changes will be made with immediate effect and will be in place for the foreseeable future.

Parish Events

Looking for the rest of the Parish Event List? We have archived the list from our old site but you can still view them here.
Date
TitleDescription
17.03.2020Solemnity of St JosephOn Thursday at 10:00 am we celebrate the Feast of a very great saint of the Church: St Joseph, Husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This Mass will be followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until 11:00am.
15.03.2020Coronavirus Diocesean response - please readPlease make every effort to read about the changes that the Diocese have asked us to make in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. You can click the link to the left or use the one at the top of this page.
15.03.2020100 ClubThank you to all who have renewed or taken out a subscription this year. The first draw of 2020 will take place after Mass today. Prizes are 75, 45 and 30.
15.03.2020Please pray for Eleanor Rose Orme Please pray for Eleanor Rose Orme who is to be baptised here today, for her parents and godparents, her friends and family - that together with them we will grow ever more faithful to our baptismal promises.
12.03.2020Mass and Stations of the CrossThere will be a Mass at 10:00am on Tuesday 17 Mar morning (Feast of St. Patrick) followed by Stations of the Cross.
12.03.2020Parish meetingThere is a parish meeting next Thursday 12th March in the parish room after Mass to plan events for the coming year. All are very welcome to attend
11.03.2020First Holy CommunionsMeeting in the parish room on Wednesday 11th March at 4.30pm for parents who would like their children to make their First Holy Communion this year. Contact Chris Mitchell if any queries - 07742288722
08.03.2020Please pray for Brian Bernard Stokes Please pray for Brian Bernard Stokes who is to be baptised here today, for his parents and godparents, his friends and family - that together with them we will grow ever more faithful to our baptismal promises
08.03.2020Thanks from Solihull Cooperative Funeral CareOur visitors from Solihull Cooperative Funeral Care were overwhelmed by the welcome and support which they received here last Sunday and by your generosity. With your help they raised 165.00 for Dementia UK. They have asked me to pass on their thanks.
08.03.2020Thanks from Father FrankFather Frank would like to thank those who are responsible for cleaning the church.
06.03.2020World Day of PrayerWomen's World Day of Prayer on Friday 6th March at 10.30am, St Swithin's Church, Barston. Prepared by the Christian Women of Zimbabwe. All welcome, please contact Louise Perry if you can take part in the service.
04.03.2020Get-togetherGet-together on Wednesday 4th March at 11.30am in the parish room for soup and dessert. All welcome.
01.03.2020Kneelers - Safety ConsiderationsFollowing a recent incident in the church, a risk assessment and inspection of the kneelers has been carried out (by the Parish Maintenance Committee). While the kneelers are in good condition and did not require repairs, the inspection concluded that keeping the kneelers in the 'down' position is more hazardous than in the upright position. The Committee would like to remind everyone to take care when entering and exiting the pews.
01.03.2020Second CollectionThere will be a second collection on Sunday 1st March for Cathedral Maintenance
01.03.2020March 'Prayer Calendar' for VocationsWe have been invited by the Deanery again, this year, to contribute a month of prayer for vocations to the priesthood. We are each asked to choose one day in March and to commit to saying on that day, a prayer - short or long - for increasing numbers of vocations. If you would like to support this, please sign your selected day on the sheet at the back of church. We hope to have one or more people praying this every day of the month. For further details, see Bysshe Gibbs.
26.02.2020Ash WednesdayLent begins this week with Ash Wednesday with the Blessing and Imposition of Ashes. The Church orders the season of Lent to our preparation for the celebration of Easter. The forty days of Lent run from Ash Wednesday up to, but excluding, the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Maundy Thursday. We are encouraged to participate fully in the Lenten preparation for Easter, approaching the Sacrament of Penance and making our confession during this season. The season of Lent also presents us with an opportunity to reflect on our prayer life and to give ourselves over to meditation upon the scriptures or some other spiritual reading.
23.02.2020Thank youThe sale of Christmas Cards, Advent Calendars and Candles in 2018 and 2019 amounted to 139.70. Proceeds went to HCPT Group 83. Thank you for your support, it was much appreciated.
23.02.2020Lately deadPlease pray for the Repose of the Soul of Columban Father Joe Flanagan, who died recently in Ireland. Fr Joe celebrated Mass for us here on many occasions before we had our own Parish Priest. And also, for Peggy Anderton, a neighbour, friend & supporter of Group 83
23.02.2020Walk with MeWalk with Me Booklets for Lent 1 each will be available this weekend. Please put your donation in the wall box. Thank you
16.02.2020Warwick Deanery Parish Visitation 2020This weekend we welcomed Bishop William Kenney for the Warwick Deanery Parish Visitation to our parish. Click on the link to learn more about it and read the parish report presented to the Bishop
First 1 of 35 Last Show: 20, 40, 60, All
17.03.2020
On Thursday at 10:00 am we celebrate the Feast of a very great saint of the Church: St Joseph, Husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This Mass will be followed by Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament until 11:00am.
15.03.2020
Please make every effort to read about the changes that the Diocese have asked us to make in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. You can click the link to the left or use the one at the top of this page.
15.03.2020
Thank you to all who have renewed or taken out a subscription this year. The first draw of 2020 will take place after Mass today. Prizes are 75, 45 and 30.
15.03.2020
Please pray for Eleanor Rose Orme who is to be baptised here today, for her parents and godparents, her friends and family - that together with them we will grow ever more faithful to our baptismal promises.
12.03.2020
There will be a Mass at 10:00am on Tuesday 17 Mar morning (Feast of St. Patrick) followed by Stations of the Cross.
12.03.2020
There is a parish meeting next Thursday 12th March in the parish room after Mass to plan events for the coming year. All are very welcome to attend
11.03.2020
Meeting in the parish room on Wednesday 11th March at 4.30pm for parents who would like their children to make their First Holy Communion this year. Contact Chris Mitchell if any queries - 07742288722
08.03.2020
Please pray for Brian Bernard Stokes who is to be baptised here today, for his parents and godparents, his friends and family - that together with them we will grow ever more faithful to our baptismal promises
08.03.2020
Our visitors from Solihull Cooperative Funeral Care were overwhelmed by the welcome and support which they received here last Sunday and by your generosity. With your help they raised 165.00 for Dementia UK. They have asked me to pass on their thanks.
08.03.2020
Father Frank would like to thank those who are responsible for cleaning the church.
06.03.2020
Women's World Day of Prayer on Friday 6th March at 10.30am, St Swithin's Church, Barston. Prepared by the Christian Women of Zimbabwe. All welcome, please contact Louise Perry if you can take part in the service.
04.03.2020
Get-together on Wednesday 4th March at 11.30am in the parish room for soup and dessert. All welcome.
01.03.2020
Following a recent incident in the church, a risk assessment and inspection of the kneelers has been carried out (by the Parish Maintenance Committee). While the kneelers are in good condition and did not require repairs, the inspection concluded that keeping the kneelers in the 'down' position is more hazardous than in the upright position. The Committee would like to remind everyone to take care when entering and exiting the pews.
01.03.2020
There will be a second collection on Sunday 1st March for Cathedral Maintenance
01.03.2020
We have been invited by the Deanery again, this year, to contribute a month of prayer for vocations to the priesthood. We are each asked to choose one day in March and to commit to saying on that day, a prayer - short or long - for increasing numbers of vocations. If you would like to support this, please sign your selected day on the sheet at the back of church. We hope to have one or more people praying this every day of the month. For further details, see Bysshe Gibbs.
26.02.2020
Lent begins this week with Ash Wednesday with the Blessing and Imposition of Ashes. The Church orders the season of Lent to our preparation for the celebration of Easter. The forty days of Lent run from Ash Wednesday up to, but excluding, the Mass of the Lord's Supper on Maundy Thursday. We are encouraged to participate fully in the Lenten preparation for Easter, approaching the Sacrament of Penance and making our confession during this season. The season of Lent also presents us with an opportunity to reflect on our prayer life and to give ourselves over to meditation upon the scriptures or some other spiritual reading.
23.02.2020
The sale of Christmas Cards, Advent Calendars and Candles in 2018 and 2019 amounted to 139.70. Proceeds went to HCPT Group 83. Thank you for your support, it was much appreciated.
23.02.2020
Please pray for the Repose of the Soul of Columban Father Joe Flanagan, who died recently in Ireland. Fr Joe celebrated Mass for us here on many occasions before we had our own Parish Priest. And also, for Peggy Anderton, a neighbour, friend & supporter of Group 83
23.02.2020
Walk with Me Booklets for Lent 1 each will be available this weekend. Please put your donation in the wall box. Thank you
16.02.2020
This weekend we welcomed Bishop William Kenney for the Warwick Deanery Parish Visitation to our parish. Click on the link to learn more about it and read the parish report presented to the Bishop
First 1 of 35 Last Show: 20, 40, 60, All

Parish Calendar

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