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,
Weekly Parish Newsletter

We have restarted our weekly parish newsletter. It is available online by clicking on the link 'Latest newsletter' elsewhere on this page
Father Frank writes
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The Gospel today invites us to celebrate the mystery at the heart of our salvation: God longs for us to be united with him, and with one another, in love. The readings from John typically rejoice at the Good News that we are truly loved by God - the God who is love. And God's great love is revealed most powerfully in the life death, resurrection and ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ’s prayer was 'that they may be one as we are one' - praying that the unity between Christians should reflect the unity that exists between the Persons of the Most Holy Trinity. This is the loving purpose of God for us and we must not allow anything to draw us away from it.
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, I hope that you are all keeping well and keeping close to God and that, through your prayer and faithfulness to Christ and his commandments, you are remaining in him - abiding in him - like fruitful branches of the True Vine. The pandemic, for many, has pointed up our vulnerability and mortality and helped us to see our absolute need of God. It has also helped us to see what really matters - especially the ‘one thing needful’ - which is to grow in union with Christ - to remain in him through prayer, trust and through lovingly keeping his commandments. This is what Christ tells us to do in today’s Gospel and he adds: “I have told you this so that my own joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.” May God bless you in your desire and endeavours to stay close to Christ so that you might remain in the joy of his love and life. Fr Frank
The Eucharist is the very manifestation and fulfilment of the Church in all her power, sanctity and fullness. By taking part in the Eucharist we are empowered to increase in holiness and fulfil all that we have been called to be and do. The Church, gathered in the Eucharist, even when limited to two or three, is the image and realisation of the body of Christ, and those gathered will be able to partake - be communicants of the body and blood of Christ, because he is manifested, made present, in and through their assembly. Through the Eucharist we make our home in Christ who describes himself in today’s Gospel as ‘the true vine.’ He is the ‘vine’ and we are the ‘branches’ which feed on his life in and through the miracle of the Mass.
Today is World Day of Prayer for Vocations. We pray for an increase in vocations to the priesthood, diaconate and religious life and that all believers will be faithful to their baptismal vocation. To follow Christ is to love him, to trust him, to serve him and to do his will - which is also what it means to be faithful to our vocation. Christ, the Good Shepherd, tells us that his sheep follow him “because they recognise his voice.” We have to learn to distinguish the voice of the one true God from the voices of the many false gods and idols which call to us today.
The Resurrection of Christ is central to Christianity. It is a fundamental truth to be reasserted vigorously in every epoch, since to deny it, as has been, and continues to be attempted, or to transform it into a purely spiritual event, is to thwart our very faith. St Paul states: “If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain.” In the days that followed the Lord’s Resurrection, the Apostles stayed together, comforted by Mary’s presence, and after the Ascension they persevered with her prayerful expectation of Pentecost. Our Lady was a mother and teacher to them, a role that she continues to play for Christians of all times. (Pope Benedict XVI)
Today is Divine Mercy Sunday. Humankind not only receives and experiences the mercy of God, but is also called to practice mercy towards others. “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.” It is to this end that we receive the transforming Spirit of God - the Holy Spirit, who through the power of God's great loving mercy, transforms our interior life in order that it might radiate outwardly and be a transforming power in the world.
Christ has risen! I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all the joy of Easter. Today, with the Holy Church of God throughout the world, we proclaim and celebrate the truth which is foundational to our Christian faith, that on the third day Christ rose from the dead. And Christ, the Risen One, does not depart from us but returns to greet us with his peace and to remain with us until the end of time. And we share his peace and rejoice in his presence in the Mass. Thank you for the collection today which is the customary Easter offering to your priest. I am grateful for the generosity of spirit which is shown in so many ways in the life of the Parish.
Holy Week begins today with Palm Sunday when the Church recalls the entrance of Christ the Lord into Jerusalem to accomplish his Paschal Mystery. The Paschal Mystery, the passage from death to life, is the heart of our faith. The account of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of Jesus forms the oldest part of the Gospels. It is what the evangelists recorded first. For them, it was the heart and nucleus of the Lord’s witness to the loving purposes of God. That is why the Paschal Mystery is at the heart of our communal celebration as the Church and is at the heart of our lives as Christians and this is why the liturgies of Holy Week and Easter are so important. Through the Easter Triduum of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday we celebrate the greatest mysteries of our redemption keeping, through very special celebrations, the memorial of our Lord’s crucifixion, burial and resurrection. This year we are encouraged to join together in these celebrations through sharing in the streaming of these sacred events from St Chad’s Cathedral.
Day of Prayer for the Pandemic: We are invited to join in a Day of Prayer for the Pandemic on Tuesday 23rd March - to pray for the many needs, hopes and sorrows that have emerged over the last year and to pray that this pandemic comes to an end, reflecting with thanksgiving on the generosity, inventiveness, self-sacrifice and determination shown by so many in this most difficult of times.
Today is Mothering Sunday and so we give thanks to God for our mothers and for all who are mothers in our community. May God bless you in your high calling, remembering that the greatest of the saints, Our Blessed Lady, was, like you, a mother and that through loving devotion to her calling attained to the heights of holiness. May Mary, the holy Mother of the Church, pray for us as we continue our journey through Lent.
The portrait of Jesus in today’s Gospel is a world away from the storybook caricature of him as “gentle Jesus meek and mild,” whose harmlessness can sometimes look indistinguishable from effete weakness. Jesus was a builder - a carpenter by trade and, no doubt, he presented an imposing figure in the Temple when he overthrew the moneychangers’ tables and drove out the sellers of cattle, sheep and pigeons. No one was able to resist the power of this gentle and meek man who was passionate about God’s Temple being for God alone - it is not a place for the pursuit of self-interest - it is for the worship and service of God. We are that temple.
Today in the Gospel we hear how the apostles Peter, James and John were given a glimpse of Christ’s glory on the Mount of the Transfiguration - the same glimpse of glory that we are all given when we gather for the Mass, for in and through the sacred mysteries of the Eucharist we ascend to the heavenly places where, with Angels and Archangels and all the host of heaven, we worship the Beloved Son of God who sits at the right hand of the Father. God, the Holy Spirit, gathers us into the cloud of his glory. We listen to him in the scriptures. We feed on him in the Sacrament of the altar. No wonder the disciples “kept silence.” “Master, it is wonderful for us to be here.”
Holy Week and Easter are the climax of the Christian liturgical year. The time of the Passion and Resurrection is proceeded by Lent, a lengthy period of preparation for these painful and illuminating mysteries. Lent is a time of penitence. It is a time for us to examine our conscience and seek reconciliation with the Lord. Lent is also a time for spiritual growth and enlightenment. In Lent we are invited to listen, and respond, ever more faithfully to the voice of God. Lent also commemorates Israel’s liberation from slavery in Egypt and their forty years of wandering in the wilderness. Lent relates this to our own spiritual journey, to our liberation, our pilgrimage, our feeding on divine manna and of our meeting with God. And, as we see from today’s Gospel, Lent also recalls the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert during which he contended with Satan, the tempter. And our Lent must be a period of fighting against temptation. From this one can see that Lent is a very rich, a very deep mixture of elements which serve to purify and enlighten us. During the time of Lent the Church leads us towards the radiant glory of the Paschal feast. The more serious our Lenten preparation has been, the deeper we shall enter into the mystery of Easter and gather its fruits.
At the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, his acts revealed him as a man of mysterious power, working impressive miracles reaching out and curing people instantly. But miracles were only part of the story - they were signs of the new life of the Kingdom of God breaking in but Jesus knew that those who saw him only as a wonder-worker would miss the real meaning and purpose of his life. Therefore he silences the demons, who know who he is, commanding that his true identity should be kept quiet until the rest of the story could be told - the story which leads to the cross and resurrection. It was not that he wanted to hide his true identity, rather it was that he wanted it revealed fully and that would be possible only after his death and resurrection. Only then could he be seen as much more than a wonder-worker and performer of miracles - only then could he be seen as the Lord and Saviour of the world.
The Gospel today describes the first of many miracles performed by Jesus which reveal his authority and power. Jesus speaks with the same miraculous power by which he acts. This first miracle in Jesus' ministry signifies that Satan's tyranny over the world has come to an end and that the Kingdom of God has broken into human history.
In today’s Gospel reading we see how Jesus begins his public life with an exhortation to repent because the kingdom of heaven, or in Mark’s version the kingdom of God, is at hand. This warning prompted by love is addressed to all, for no one is without sin. Yet no matter how many wounds our human nature has sustained, we are never justified in giving way to despair, for the Lord, in his great love for us, pours out his compassion abundantly on all who need it.
Today’s Gospel conducts us to the River Jordan. This was the holy place where first century Judeans expected to see the Messiah come. It was also at this place that the people, long ago, crossed over into the promised land. Today’s story finds us here at this holy place, where John the Baptist is proclaiming Jesus to be the Lamb of God - the One who takes away the sins of the world, the One we are to follow.
Mark, the earliest of the Gospel writers chooses to begin the story of Jesus, not with the birth of the Christ-child, but with the baptism of the adult Jesus. And this beginning is highly significant for Jesus and the whole of creation. Today Baptism is too often thought of as a family affair - a private ceremony arranged between parents and priest and performed quietly in a corner of the church. But properly understood, Baptism is far from a private affair, For Baptism involves and concerns not only the whole of the Church but also the whole of creation. Baptism is of cosmic and eternal significance.
Our hope is in God, not in the sense of a generic religiosity or a fatalism cloaked in faith. We trust in God who revealed completely and definitively in Jesus Christ his desire to be with human beings, to share in our history, to guide us all to his Kingdom of love and life. And this great hope enlivens and at times corrects our human hopes. [The scriptures] affirm that God is not only the creator of the universe, an aspect common to other religions too, but that he is the Father who “chose us in him before the foundation of the world… He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ,” and that for this reason he even, inconceivably, went so far as to make himself man: “the Word became flesh and dwelled among us.” (Pope Benedict XVI) Our thanks to all the volunteers who have worked selflessly to keep the church open and have made it possible for us to celebrate Mass in this Christmas season. Our hearts go out to all those members of our parish who would usually gather with us at Christmas. We pray that God will bless and protect them and we look forward to the time when we will all be united around the altar once again. Due to my underlying health conditions, and based on medical advice, I will continue to celebrate Mass from behind the glass screen. I realise this is not ideal - as with so many things at present, it is frustrating for all of us. I know that I can rely on your patience and understanding.
The Feast today reminds us that God’s revelation and the outworking of his loving purposes takes place in the context of human families. In today’s readings we see how God begins a new work in the world through Abraham and Sarah, in the Old Testament and through Mary and Joseph, in the New Testament. Both couples faithfully trusted in God’s promises and saw them come to fulfilment - such is the faithfulness and mercy of God. Our thanks to all the volunteers who have worked selflessly to keep the church open and have made it possible for us to celebrate Mass in this Christmas season. Our hearts go out to all those members of our parish who would usually gather with us at Christmas. We pray that God will bless and protect them and we look forward to the time when we will all be united around the altar once again. I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your cards, offerings, gifts and for all your generosity. Due to my underlying health conditions, and based on medical advice that it would be unwise for me to celebrate Mass in the same space as a congregation, I will continue to celebrate Mass from behind the glass screen. I realise this is not ideal - as with so many things at present, it is frustrating for all of us. I know that I can rely on your patience and understanding. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and has asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation.
The Gospel of this Fourth Sunday of Advent proposes to us the account of the Annunciation, the mystery to which we return every day in reciting the Angelus. This prayer makes us relive the decisive moment at which God knocked at Mary’s heart and, having received her “yes”, began to take flesh, in her and from her. The Collect of today’s Mass is the same as the one we recite at the end of the Angelus. With only a few days until the Feast of Christmas, we are invited to fix our gaze on the ineffable mystery that Mary treasured for nine months in her virginal womb: the mystery of God who is made man. Our thanks to all the volunteers who have worked selflessly to keep the church open and have made it possible for us to celebrate the Christmas Masses. Our hearts go out to all those members of our parish who would usually gather with us at Christmas. We pray that God will bless and protect them and we look forward to the time when we will all be united around the altar once again. As this is the last bulletin before Christmas, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a happy Christmas, filled with the blessing and joy of Christ. Due to my underlying health conditions I have received medical advice that it would be unwise for me to celebrate Mass in the same space as a congregation, therefore I will continue to celebrate Mass from behind the glass screen. I realise this is not ideal - it is frustrating for all of us. I know that I can rely on your patience and understanding. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and has asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation.
John the Baptist, who we hear about in today’s Gospel, marks the end of the time of waiting and the beginning of the new age in Jesus. John is the last of the great prophets, For a long time the people had been without a messenger from God but in John the Baptist the people discovered an end to God’s silence. Through John they could hear the word of God. We are told that many went out from the towns and cities to see John - which is testimony to his charismatic power to attract people - such is the powerful attraction of the word of God alive and active in a person. Welcome back to the second week after re-opening for Mass. My thanks to all the volunteers who have made this possible. Due to my underlying health conditions I have received medical advice that it would be unwise for me to celebrate Mass in the same space as a congregation, therefore I will continue to celebrate Mass from behind the glass screen. I realise this is not ideal - it is frustrating for all of us. I know that I can rely on your patience and understanding. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and has asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation. Please see elsewhere on this page details about our Christmas masses and the restrictions we need to follow. If you wish to attend mass on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, please read the instructions and book your place.
The invitation to welcome the God who comes to us in Christ and to cast away empty living is repeated in the liturgy of the Second Sunday of Advent. The Opening Prayer of the Mass asks that no earthly undertaking hinder those who set out in haste to meet Christ. And today we hear the lonely voice of John the Baptist who exhorts us to prepare a way for the Lord. May our faithfulness to the spirit of Advent create a space so that the Lord can come to us. Re-Opening for Mass - Welcome back to Mass. My thanks to all the volunteers who have made this possible. Due to my underlying health conditions I have received medical advice that it would be unwise for me to celebrate Mass in the same space as a congregation, therefore I will continue to celebrate Mass from behind the glass screen. I realise this is not ideal - it is frustrating for all of us. I know that I can rely on your patience and understanding. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and has asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation.
The Gospel today encourages to “stay awake” - not to allow ourselves to become complacent in our Christian lives. Advent is a penitential season when the Church invites us to prepare for the many ways in which Our Lord Jesus Christ comes to us. We can be assisted in remaining vigilant through prayer, fasting and almsgiving, that’s why these disciplines are recommended in this season. Like the “doorkeeper” in Mark’s Gospel, Christians have to remain ever watchful and be attentive to what the Lord wants to reveal to us in all the circumstances of our everyday lives. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and has asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation.
The feast of Christ the King, which the holy Church throughout the world celebrates today, brings to a close the Church’s liturgical year. Our image of a monarch tends to be of one who lives a privileged life and lords it over others. Christ our King is not like that. He came to serve, not to be served and he wants us to imitate him in his loving service of others. That is why, as St. John of the Cross said: “In the evening of life we shall be examined on love.” If to love and to serve our neighbour is heavenly, hell is the suffering of one who refuses to love and serve. I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. Due to the current lockdown, Mass at Blessed Robert Grissold church has been suspended until further notice. Please see the bulletin, posted on the parish website, for updates and any news. It has been encouraging to see the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. Archbishop Bernard has also recognised the diligence and devotion of the volunteers and asked me to pass on his gratitude and appreciation.
I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion and reflection on the parish website so that we can still pray together. Due to the current lockdown, Mass at Blessed Robert Grissold church has been suspended until further notice. Please see the bulletin, posted on the parish website, for updates and any news. It has been encouraging to hear from Joe Martin of the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows. In today’s Gospel we hear of a man who returned everything he had ever been given to his master - and yet he was censured. He was blamed, not for misusing the gifts he had been given, but rather for not having used them at all. This Gospel passage encourages us to reflect on how we use the gifts and talents we have received from God. The Parable of the Talents teaches us that true religion - a true response to Christ’s call to be his disciples - involves risk, adventure and enterprise. To use God-given gifts and talents aright is to share in the joy of the kingdom.
I hope that you are all keeping well under these trying and frustrating circumstances and that you are coping with the new lockdown. You continue to be in my prayers daily as I offer the Mass. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion on the parish website so that we can still pray together. Due to the current lockdown, Mass at Blessed Robert Grissold church has been suspended until further notice. Please see the bulletin, posted on the parish website, for updates and any news. It has been encouraging to hear from Joe Martin of the generous response to the call for volunteers needed to celebrate Mass. Once again I have cause to be impressed and grateful for your selfless dedication and for the love of Christ and his Church which this shows.
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. It was good to see so many of you at Mass last Sunday. Once again our thanks go to those who have volunteered to attend to the tasks necessary to keep the church open. It is intended that Mass on Sundays will be celebrated at the usual time of 9.30 a.m. In the first instance attendance at Mass will be on a first-come-first-served basis. There is a maximum capacity of 30. Today we celebrate the Solemnity of All Saints when we give thanks to God for all those who are in heaven, both those recognised by the Church as saints and those known only to the Lord. The Church teaches that sanctity is within everyone’s reach and we ask for the intercession of the saints in heaven as we endeavour to follow their example. Tomorrow, on the Feast of All Souls, we commemorate all the Faithful Departed when the Church invites us to pray for our beloved deceased. I will continue to post a weekly Spiritual Communion on the parish 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. With all good wishes and every blessing Fr Frank
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.
In today's Gospel Jesus speaks of the mysterious water which is capable of 'welling up to eternal life.' This is the life given, in Baptism - a life we are called to cherish and nurture. The elements of Baptism, namely the water of the font and the holy oils, refer us to the stuff of the cosmos - reminding us that everything is caught up in God's loving purposes of making all things new. In the early Church, Baptism took place during the Easter Vigil and Baptism spoke of the new life and the new time of which Easter is the celebration and manifestation. Baptism has always found its fulfilment in the Eucharist which is the sacrament of the Kingdom - the sacrament of the 'eternal life' of the world to come.
Today in the Gospel we hear how the apostles Peter, James and John were given a glimpse of Christ's glory on the Mount of the Transfiguration - the same glimpse of glory that we are all given when we gather for the Mass, for in and through the sacred mysteries of the Eucharist we ascend to the heavenly places where, with Angels and Archangels and all the host of heaven, we worship the Beloved Son of God who sits at the right hand of the Father. God, the Holy Spirit, gathers us into the cloud of his glory. We listen to him in the scriptures. We feed on him in the Sacrament of the altar. No wonder the disciples "kept silence" and then proclaimed "Master, it is wonderful for us to be here."
Holy Week and Easter are the climax of the Christian liturgical year. The time of the Passion and Resurrection is proceeded by Lent, a lengthy period of preparation for these saving and illuminating mysteries. Lent is a time of penitence. It is a time for us to examine our conscience and seek reconciliation with the Lord. Lent is also a time for spiritual growth and enlightenment. In Lent we are invited to listen, and respond, ever more faithfully to the voice of God. Lent also commemorates Israel's liberation from slavery in Egypt and their forty years of wandering in the wilderness. Lent relates this to our own spiritual journey, to our liberation, our pilgrimage, our feeding on divine manna and of our meeting with God. And, as we see from today's Gospel, Lent also recalls the forty days that Jesus spent in the desert during which he contended with Satan, the tempter. And our Lent must be a period of fighting against temptation. From this one can see that Lent is a very rich, a very deep mixture of elements which serve to purify and enlighten us. During the time of Lent the Church leads us towards the radiant glory of the Paschal feast. The more serious our Lenten preparation has been, the deeper we shall enter into the joyful mystery of Easter and gather its fruits.
In the Gospel today, Jesus speaks of the nature of God's Kingdom which is breaking into this world even now. This is the 'perfect' life of the heavenly kingdom so we should not be surprised that his words sound strange for they are opening up to us a strange and new reality which is not of this world. This eternal life is that dimension of the kingdom which we pray will come on earth. The power and the glory of this eternal dimension of the kingdom which is breaking into our world transforms and renews all things so that discord, hatred and violence are overcome by the love and peace of Christ. It is this life of the kingdom which we see breaking into this world in the words and examples of Jesus and the saints - in the ones who 'love their enemies' and 'pray for those who persecute them.' And it is into this eternal dimension, that makes such strange new things possible, that God gathers us each time he summons us before him in the Mass. For in and through the Eucharist, the Holy Spirit gathers us and makes us one with Christ who sits at the right hand of the Father in the heavenly kingdom, so that, with Angels and Archangels, with Thrones and Dominions and with all the hosts and Powers of heaven, we sing the hymn of his glory.
In the Gospel today, Christ teaches us about the relationships we should nurture and enjoy as members of his Body - the Church. As the baptised we are called to live and act in a way that is caught up in God's love and life. In this way we witness to Christ in the world. We are not to live as those who do not know Christ - those who quarrel and divide over selfish preferences, those who are motivated by self-serving desire. Rather, as members of the Church, we are to live differently, bearing witness to the alternative life Christ brings, for, as members of his Body, we are bound to him in his loving mission to the whole of creation. As co-workers with Christ we are called to enact God's deep love for the world - to get our minds off ourselves and our petty self-interests and to live together harmoniously
In the Gospel today, Jesus teaches that the lives of his followers should have a distinctive quality. Like salt, we should add a peculiar flavour to life because our life in Christ is distinctive and peculiar. This distinctive and peculiar quality of the Christ-life in us should shine like a light in the world, because Christ is the Light of the world. But if we lose our distinctive and peculiar taste - if the light in us is dimmed or hidden from the world - then we are no longer fit for purpose for we are called to witness to the love and light of Christ by our lives so that all may "taste and see that the Lord is good."
Candlemas, which we celebrate today, traditionally concludes the celebration of Christmas. So, with Christmas behind us we look forward to Lent and to that approaching period of prayer when we can reflect on all that is most important to our life of faith in Christ. Simeon and Anna, who we hear about in today's Gospel, are devout and prayerful people who are open to the prompting and guidance of the Holy Spirit. The Church has always taught that the way we pray and worship is foundational to what we truly believe and to our Christian life. This vital teaching has been expressed traditionally in the words: Lex Orandi, Lex Credendi, Lex Vivendi - As we Worship, So we Believe, So we Live. So the Mass and our life of prayer should not be seen as something we "add on" to our busy lives - it must be seen for what it truly is - as absolutely vital and fundamental to all that we are as the Church and as Christians.
Father Frank’s health continues to improve. Please keep him and his family in your prayers
Thank you for all your prayers, support and kindness. Your generosity to me far outweighs what I deserve. My recovery is slow and I am a poor patient. I am looking forward to being back with you just as soon as possible and I spend my time planning for this - but I am still weak and tire easily. Please continue to keep me in your prayers and please pray especially for Sandra who has to bear the weight of my illness. I miss you all. Be assured of my prayers and love. Fr Frank
Father Frank is unwell and is currently resting. Mass themes will return once he has recovered
In the first reading today, we hear some of the loveliest words in Scripture. The prophet Isaiah, setting aside the fear and gloom of the contemporary political situation, looks forward to a Golden Age when God's salvation will transform every living thing. The barren places of nature will bloom; the weak and the frail will be strong; Jerusalem will be a new centre of creation. And if we listen carefully, we will recognise words used by Handel in his setting of the Messiah - celebrating the God, who comes to us in Jesus, to make all things new.
Masses at Blessed Robert Grissold in Time of COVID-19 - Click here for more information
Mass, with the congregation gathered behind the glass screen, continues this Sunday at 9.30 am. Thanks to all the volunteers who are making this possible. There are a limited number of seats because of the continued need for distancing. A booking system will be introduced if it proves necessary but until then the seats will be allocated on a first come first served basis. We all look forward to being able to gather together soon (from June onwards hopefully) in the main body of the church for Mass. I will keep you posted in the Bulletin of progress in this regard. The Sunday obligation remains suspended and, as many in our congregation are still reluctant to gather for Mass, I will continue, regularly, to post the Mass, a Spiritual Communion and guidance for prayer, online.

Spiritual Communion

I will continue to post a weekly spiritual communion for Sundays on this parish website together with a meditation. This also provides a framework for daily prayer and meditation throughout the week as I will supply the references for the daily Gospel readings.

A Prayer for Spiritual Communion

Please find below a prayer which you can join in praying during the Mass online as you make your Spiritual Communion. This prayer was written by 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. We make this, and all our prayers through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Take care and stay safe.
With all good wishes and every blessing
Fr Frank
Making a Spiritual Communion - 16th May 2021 - Click here

Making a Spiritual Communion *

SEVENTH SUNDAY OF EASTER
16th May 2021
Mass Intention: Michael Santos (RIP)


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

O Lord, hear my voice,
for I have called to you;
of you my heart has spoken:
Seek his face;
hide not your face from me,
alleluia.

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)

Graciously hear our supplications, O Lord,
so that we, who believe that
the Saviour of the human race is with you in glory,
may experience, as he promised,
until the end of the world,
his abiding presence among us.
Who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.
Amen

First Reading: From the Acts of the Apostles 1: 15-17, 20-26

Responsorial Psalm:

R. The Lord has set his sway in heaven

My soul, give thanks to the Lord;
all my being, bless his holy name.
My soul, give thanks to the Lord
and never forget all his blessings.
R.

For as the heavens are far above the earth
so strong is his love for those who fear him.
As far as the east is from the west
so far does he remove our sins.
R.

The Lord has set his sway in heaven
and his kingdom is ruling over all.
Give thanks to the Lord, all his angels,
mighty in power, fulfilling his word.
R.

Second Reading:
The First Letter of St John 4: 11-16

Gospel: A reading from the holy Gospel according to John

Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and said: ‘Holy Father, keep those you have given me true to your name, so that they may be one like us. While I was with them, I kept those you have given me true to your name. I have watched over them and not one is lost except the one who chose to be lost, and this was to fulfil the scriptures. But now I am coming to you and while still in the world I say these things to share my joy with them to the full. I passed your word on to them, because they belong to the world no more than I belong to the world. I am not asking you to remove them from the world, but to protect them from the evil one. They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. Consecrate them in the truth, your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world, and for their sake I consecrate myself so that they too may be consecrated in truth.’

Reflection

The Gospel today invites us to celebrate the mystery at the heart of our salvation: God longs for us to be united with him, and with one another, in love. The readings from John typically rejoice at the Good News that we are truly loved by God - the God who is love. And God’s great love is revealed most powerfully in the life death, resurrection and ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ’s prayer was ‘that they may be one as we are one’ - praying that the unity between Christians should reflect the unity that exists between the Persons of the Most Holy Trinity. This is the loving purpose of God for us and we must not allow anything to draw us away from it. It is Christ’s will that those who belong to him should be united in a community of love, worship and holiness. We see in scriptures how the whole company of believers were united through the power of the Holy Spirit so that there was one body sharing in the one Spirit.

May Almighty God bless you through the Easter mysteries
and, in his compassion, guard, guide and protect you,
through Christ, Our Risen Lord. Amen.

Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us

Immaculate Heart of Mary, have mercy on us

Saints Michael, Raphael and Gabriel, pray for us

Blessed Robert Grissold, pray for us

All holy Guardian Angels watch over, guard and protect 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 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 the Sixth Week of Easter

Mon 17 May John 16: 29-33
Tues 18 John 17: 1-11
Wed 19 John 17: 11-19

Thurs 20 John 17: 20-26
Fri 21 John 21: 15-19
Sat 22 John 21: 20-25
Sun 23
SOLEMNITY OF PENTECOST
John 20: 19-23
Guy and Jacqueline Provost

Coronavirus News for Balsall and Berkswell Parishes as of 11th April 2021 - Please Click here to read


2021April9thCoronavirusupdate

Mass at Blessed Robert Grissold in time of COVID-19

Please note these important directions:
+ 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 the conclusion of Mass

Please do not congregate in the car park after leaving the church

During Mass there will be no:
+ Children’s liturgy
+ Offertory procession
+ Sign of peace
+ Parish missals, misalettes or hymn books
+ Congregational 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:
+ In the first instance, attendance will be on a first-come, first-served basis. Once capacity has been reached the stewards will prevent entry
+ Wrap up warm - doors and windows will be left open to increase ventilation wherever possible

Toilets in the church
In order to avoid possible spread of infection and to reduce the need for further cleaning we are trying to keep the toilets closed, but the toilet may be used in the case of emergency. If you need to use the toilet, you are asked to carefully clean and wipe down all surfaces you have touched.
MASS ONLINE
Mass Online In order to join in with the Mass online please click on the YouTube link below to open the Parish YouTube channel and you will see the latest Mass with the date as the title.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-jl7rCVWalEI8W4aBn6pUw

You can also watch this week's mass below.
Fit My Video Tag
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)
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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:





OTHER MASSES ARE 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.

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
23.05.2021Pentecost SundaySunday May 2rd is Pentecost Sunday when we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, on the Church.
13.05.2021Ascension of the LordOn Thursday of this week the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. The Ascension crowns Christ’s earthly mission - His heavenly Father welcomes him after his victory over sin and death and glorifies him in heaven. The Ascension marks God’s acceptance of Christ’s work of reparation for our sins. His sacrifice on the Cross is accepted and blessed and the spotless Victim ascends into God’s heavenly presence where he will continue to offer and be offered eternally in a heavenly manner. The Good News is that we ascend with Christ to the heavenly places for he assumed our humanity and has taken it with him into the heart of the love that exists eternally between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. As St Paul says: ‘God has raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus’ (Ephesians 2:6).
09.05.2021Praying for the End of the PandemicPope Francis has invited all the faithful to be united in prayer with Our Blessed Lady throughout the month of May in praying for the end of the pandemic. The holy Father has asked us to pray the Rosary daily through the month of May, invoking the powerful intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
09.05.2021May - the Month of MaryMay is the month of Our Blessed Lady and what better way to celebrate the incomparable beauty of her Christ-like humility and obedience than to pray the Rosary daily - offering up at least a decade each day for the Church, for the world, for our own intentions and in reparation for our sins and those of the whole world?
02.05.2021First Sunday MassFr Chris Greaney will be presiding with the congregation gathered in the main body of the church this Sunday at the 9.30 am Mass.
02.05.2021May - the Month of MaryMay is the month of Our Blessed Lady and what better way to celebrate the incomparable beauty of her Christ-like humility and obedience than to pray the Rosary daily - offering up at least a decade each day for the Church, for the world, for our own intentions and in reparation for our sins and those of the whole world?
02.05.2021First Sunday MassFr Chris Greaney will be presiding with the congregation gathered in the main body of the church on Sunday 2nd May at the 9.30 am Mass.
24.04.2021Dymphna Cassidy (RIP)Dymphna’s husband, Terry, has asked me to pass on his gratitude to all those Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion who took the Blessed Sacrament to Dymphna during her time at Harper Fields.
11.04.2021Thank youThank you for your generous Easter offerings and for the way you contribute to the life of our worshipping community, so facilitating our mutual strengthening in the faith.
28.03.2021Easter OfferingsThe collection at Mass on Easter Sunday is the customary Easter Offering for your parish priest.
28.03.2021Wanted: Gift Aid OrganiserJohn Mclellan, our Gift Aid Organiser at BRG, has decided to step down in April. As a parish we owe a great debt of gratitude to John for his work in this capacity, not least because the Gift Aid Organiser ensures that substantial funds are returned to the Parish each year. John has kindly expressed his desire for a planned and orderly takeover and is prepared to show his successor the ropes. If you would like to volunteer for this position, or if you want to explore the possibility further, please contact Fr Frank
23.03.2021National Day of Reflection for Covid-19Tuesday 23 March has been designated a National Day of Reflection to mark the anniversary of the first national lockdown with a minute’s silence at midday and doorstep vigils of light at 8pm. All are asked to make this not only a Day of Reflection but also a Day of Prayer.
14.03.2021Princethorpe Employment OpportunityTeacher of English (Full or part time); Teacher of Mathematics (maternity cover). Also, Crescent School Rugby requires a Teacher of Science and Design Technology. Further details and application forms: www.theprincethorpefoundation.co.uk/join-us
14.03.2021Archbishop’s Pastoral LetterArchbishop Bernard’s Pastoral Letter will be read at the online Mass this weekend and feature as the Reflection in this week’s Spiritual Communion.
26.02.2021Family Fast DayCAFOD Family Fast Day is on Friday 26 February 2021. This Lent in lockdown, we can help transform lives! Abdella has to walk ten hours a day to find water to keep his family alive. Please watch the short film by clicking on this link: https://youtu.be/x8NOXN45t_A. More information about CAFOD’s work and their Lent 2021 appeal, including how to donate, are available on their website: www.cafod.org.uk.
17.02.2021Ash WednesdayI will also post the Mass for Ash Wednesday this week. Please use the same link above for both the Sunday and Ash Wednesday masses.
14.02.2021Lent – Teaching and DiscussionIf there is sufficient interest, I am happy to prepare talks and discussion, online, for Lent. These would provide a regular opportunity to reflect on our faith. Please contact Fr Frank if you are interested in taking part. I will publish any details of these events in this online bulletin
14.02.2021A Prayer for Spiritual CommunionPlease find below a prayer which you can join in praying during the Mass online as you make your Spiritual Communion: 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. We make this, and all our prayers through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
08.02.2021COVID 19 vaccination newsflash for the over 70sAre you over 70 and not got a Covid vaccine appointment yet? The Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group have vaccination spots available to all those over 70 years of age who have not yet had their covid vaccination and who do not yet have an appointment. You will probably have to travel outside of Balsall Common to have the jab but you might gain several days. To book an appointment then do one of the following 1. Copy this address into your browser: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/ and follow the instructions or 2. Call 119
07.02.2021Fr Sebastian 75th Birthday and Golden Jubilee as a PriestThis year Fr. Sebastian celebrates his 7th birthday and his golden jubilee as a priest. Read more about it here
03.01.2021Post for Fr FrankPlease hand to one of the stewards at Mass. They will see that Fr Frank receives all post, including Mass cards, after Mass. Fr Frank will respond to you during the week.
03.01.2021“Giving Tree” CollectionThank you to everyone who donated to our parish collection before Christmas to replace our usual Christmas Giving Tree. The total of money and vouchers donated was £410 – a wonderful result, especially with current restrictions on numbers able to attend mass. Thanks to your generosity, we were able to deliver a small gift and Christmas card to 21 of our older, more isolated parishioners, as well as a gratefully received donation to Father Hudson’s Care, which will be used to help those in need in our diocese. If you missed our parish collection, you can still donate to Father Hudson’s directly, via bank transfer, cheque or online – see their website for details: https://www.fatherhudsons.org.uk/getinvolved/donate/3.htm.
03.01.2021Focus Group volunteers neededThe Joint Working Group of Balsall Common and Berkswell Parish Councils has invited local churches to form their own focus group to provide their views on the future development of Balsall Common centre, as part of their project to obtain community input. The group would consist of one or two people from each church who regularly use Balsall Common centre, and would “meet” via Zoom for a session of about 2 hours in January – probably in the early evening. If you are interested in representing Blessed Robert Grissold in this way, please email Ian Clarke at iehclarke@btinternet.com. This “Churches Focus Group” is just one of a number of groups that the Joint Working Group hopes to establish to discuss plans – there is a link to their general request for volunteers for focus groups especially on the home page of our parish website. The general groups are open to everyone – the Parish Councils are particularly keen to see that the views of all age groups are represented.
03.01.2021Thanks from Fr. FrankFr Frank would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your cards, offerings, gifts and for all your generosity and support and to wish you and your loved ones a happy and blessed New Year.
20.12.2020Christmas offering for the Parish PriestIt is traditional for the offering at the Christmas masses to go tothe Parish Priest. This year, there will be a box at church on the next two Sundays and at the Christmas Masses for your Christmas offering to Fr. Frank. Alternatively, you can drop it off at 12 Priors Close Balsall Common CV7 7FJ and Joe will ensure that Fr Frank receives it.
13.12.2020100 Club DrawJohn McLellan and Chris Burleigh have just done the final 100 club draw for the year, over Zoom using a random number generator. here are the results: 1st, £75 No. 99 Eileen Selby, 2nd, £45 No. 62 Jean Henser and 3rd, £30 No. 40 Megan Westall. Congratulations to the winners!
29.11.2020Parish Giving Tree 2020Our annual giving tree has to take a different form this year.  Rather than buying and wrapping gifts for different age groups, Fr Hudson’s society has asked that we donate cash or store vouchers instead.  COVID has hit us all this year but, as with any crisis, the people who were already disadvantaged will have been most affected.  We are therefore asking the parish to come together, in a safely socially distanced way, to make a Christmas offering for this.  We will be collecting cash, cheques, or store vouchers (please include a receipt with these) outside the church between 9.00am and 9.30am on Sunday 6th and 13th December. There will be an additional collection in the car park on Saturday 12th December 10.00am-11.00am. Some of the funds collected will be used to send Christmas cheer to members of the parish who are unable to come to church during the pandemic.  If you would like to help with distributing a local gift please leave your contact details for Kathryn Driffield  at one of the collections
22.11.2020Normal Weekly OfferingThe Finance committee would like to let any parishioners who wish to catch up with their normal weekly offering know that this can be done safely and easily by dropping a cheque payable to Blessed Robert Grissold Church to Bob Jones at 58 Balsall Street East or give it to one the Finance team who will pass it on. Bob will always ensure that you have a receipt. If you prefer to provide cash that is no problem.
04.11.2020Sunday Mass will not be available for the next four weeksAs I am sure you now realise with the latest government announcement, we will not be holding Mass for at least the next four weeks. We would like to thank all members of the parish for offering to help with the cleaning and opening the church for mass for the last two Sundays which went very well. We had over 20 helpers and considering the size of our congregation we so lucky to have so much help thank you. We will keep you all informed what is happening as soon as more information becomes available. A weekly Spiritual Communion will be available on this website if you wish to use it.
31.10.2020Balsall Common Coronavirus Community HelpPlease be aware of the following service available in Balsall Common. Please use the phone number or email address if you need any support.
17.10.2020St George and St Teresa Catholic Primary School Virtual Open DayNotification of virtual open mornings at St George and St Teresa Catholic Primary School in Bentley Heath, Solihull. You can find out more at www.stgandt.solihull.sch.uk
10.10.2020Midland Charities Association Christmas card shopsDue 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
06.09.2020100 ClubJohn 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!
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
First 1 of 19 Last Show: 20, 40, 60, All
23.05.2021
Sunday May 2rd is Pentecost Sunday when we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, on the Church.
13.05.2021
On Thursday of this week the Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. The Ascension crowns Christ’s earthly mission - His heavenly Father welcomes him after his victory over sin and death and glorifies him in heaven. The Ascension marks God’s acceptance of Christ’s work of reparation for our sins. His sacrifice on the Cross is accepted and blessed and the spotless Victim ascends into God’s heavenly presence where he will continue to offer and be offered eternally in a heavenly manner. The Good News is that we ascend with Christ to the heavenly places for he assumed our humanity and has taken it with him into the heart of the love that exists eternally between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. As St Paul says: ‘God has raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus’ (Ephesians 2:6).
09.05.2021
Pope Francis has invited all the faithful to be united in prayer with Our Blessed Lady throughout the month of May in praying for the end of the pandemic. The holy Father has asked us to pray the Rosary daily through the month of May, invoking the powerful intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
09.05.2021
May is the month of Our Blessed Lady and what better way to celebrate the incomparable beauty of her Christ-like humility and obedience than to pray the Rosary daily - offering up at least a decade each day for the Church, for the world, for our own intentions and in reparation for our sins and those of the whole world?
02.05.2021
Fr Chris Greaney will be presiding with the congregation gathered in the main body of the church this Sunday at the 9.30 am Mass.
02.05.2021
May is the month of Our Blessed Lady and what better way to celebrate the incomparable beauty of her Christ-like humility and obedience than to pray the Rosary daily - offering up at least a decade each day for the Church, for the world, for our own intentions and in reparation for our sins and those of the whole world?
02.05.2021
Fr Chris Greaney will be presiding with the congregation gathered in the main body of the church on Sunday 2nd May at the 9.30 am Mass.
24.04.2021
Dymphna’s husband, Terry, has asked me to pass on his gratitude to all those Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion who took the Blessed Sacrament to Dymphna during her time at Harper Fields.
11.04.2021
Thank you for your generous Easter offerings and for the way you contribute to the life of our worshipping community, so facilitating our mutual strengthening in the faith.
28.03.2021
The collection at Mass on Easter Sunday is the customary Easter Offering for your parish priest.
28.03.2021
John Mclellan, our Gift Aid Organiser at BRG, has decided to step down in April. As a parish we owe a great debt of gratitude to John for his work in this capacity, not least because the Gift Aid Organiser ensures that substantial funds are returned to the Parish each year. John has kindly expressed his desire for a planned and orderly takeover and is prepared to show his successor the ropes. If you would like to volunteer for this position, or if you want to explore the possibility further, please contact Fr Frank
23.03.2021
Tuesday 23 March has been designated a National Day of Reflection to mark the anniversary of the first national lockdown with a minute’s silence at midday and doorstep vigils of light at 8pm. All are asked to make this not only a Day of Reflection but also a Day of Prayer.
14.03.2021
Teacher of English (Full or part time); Teacher of Mathematics (maternity cover). Also, Crescent School Rugby requires a Teacher of Science and Design Technology. Further details and application forms: www.theprincethorpefoundation.co.uk/join-us
14.03.2021
Archbishop Bernard’s Pastoral Letter will be read at the online Mass this weekend and feature as the Reflection in this week’s Spiritual Communion.
26.02.2021
CAFOD Family Fast Day is on Friday 26 February 2021. This Lent in lockdown, we can help transform lives! Abdella has to walk ten hours a day to find water to keep his family alive. Please watch the short film by clicking on this link: https://youtu.be/x8NOXN45t_A. More information about CAFOD’s work and their Lent 2021 appeal, including how to donate, are available on their website: www.cafod.org.uk.
17.02.2021
I will also post the Mass for Ash Wednesday this week. Please use the same link above for both the Sunday and Ash Wednesday masses.
14.02.2021
If there is sufficient interest, I am happy to prepare talks and discussion, online, for Lent. These would provide a regular opportunity to reflect on our faith. Please contact Fr Frank if you are interested in taking part. I will publish any details of these events in this online bulletin
14.02.2021
Please find below a prayer which you can join in praying during the Mass online as you make your Spiritual Communion: 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. We make this, and all our prayers through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
08.02.2021
Are you over 70 and not got a Covid vaccine appointment yet? The Birmingham and Solihull Clinical Commissioning Group have vaccination spots available to all those over 70 years of age who have not yet had their covid vaccination and who do not yet have an appointment. You will probably have to travel outside of Balsall Common to have the jab but you might gain several days. To book an appointment then do one of the following 1. Copy this address into your browser: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/coronavirus-vaccination/ and follow the instructions or 2. Call 119
07.02.2021
This year Fr. Sebastian celebrates his 7th birthday and his golden jubilee as a priest. Read more about it here
03.01.2021
Please hand to one of the stewards at Mass. They will see that Fr Frank receives all post, including Mass cards, after Mass. Fr Frank will respond to you during the week.
03.01.2021
Thank you to everyone who donated to our parish collection before Christmas to replace our usual Christmas Giving Tree. The total of money and vouchers donated was £410 – a wonderful result, especially with current restrictions on numbers able to attend mass. Thanks to your generosity, we were able to deliver a small gift and Christmas card to 21 of our older, more isolated parishioners, as well as a gratefully received donation to Father Hudson’s Care, which will be used to help those in need in our diocese. If you missed our parish collection, you can still donate to Father Hudson’s directly, via bank transfer, cheque or online – see their website for details: https://www.fatherhudsons.org.uk/getinvolved/donate/3.htm.
03.01.2021
The Joint Working Group of Balsall Common and Berkswell Parish Councils has invited local churches to form their own focus group to provide their views on the future development of Balsall Common centre, as part of their project to obtain community input. The group would consist of one or two people from each church who regularly use Balsall Common centre, and would “meet” via Zoom for a session of about 2 hours in January – probably in the early evening. If you are interested in representing Blessed Robert Grissold in this way, please email Ian Clarke at iehclarke@btinternet.com. This “Churches Focus Group” is just one of a number of groups that the Joint Working Group hopes to establish to discuss plans – there is a link to their general request for volunteers for focus groups especially on the home page of our parish website. The general groups are open to everyone – the Parish Councils are particularly keen to see that the views of all age groups are represented.
03.01.2021
Fr Frank would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your cards, offerings, gifts and for all your generosity and support and to wish you and your loved ones a happy and blessed New Year.
20.12.2020
It is traditional for the offering at the Christmas masses to go tothe Parish Priest. This year, there will be a box at church on the next two Sundays and at the Christmas Masses for your Christmas offering to Fr. Frank. Alternatively, you can drop it off at 12 Priors Close Balsall Common CV7 7FJ and Joe will ensure that Fr Frank receives it.
13.12.2020
John McLellan and Chris Burleigh have just done the final 100 club draw for the year, over Zoom using a random number generator. here are the results: 1st, £75 No. 99 Eileen Selby, 2nd, £45 No. 62 Jean Henser and 3rd, £30 No. 40 Megan Westall. Congratulations to the winners!
29.11.2020
Our annual giving tree has to take a different form this year.  Rather than buying and wrapping gifts for different age groups, Fr Hudson’s society has asked that we donate cash or store vouchers instead.  COVID has hit us all this year but, as with any crisis, the people who were already disadvantaged will have been most affected.  We are therefore asking the parish to come together, in a safely socially distanced way, to make a Christmas offering for this.  We will be collecting cash, cheques, or store vouchers (please include a receipt with these) outside the church between 9.00am and 9.30am on Sunday 6th and 13th December. There will be an additional collection in the car park on Saturday 12th December 10.00am-11.00am. Some of the funds collected will be used to send Christmas cheer to members of the parish who are unable to come to church during the pandemic.  If you would like to help with distributing a local gift please leave your contact details for Kathryn Driffield  at one of the collections
22.11.2020
The Finance committee would like to let any parishioners who wish to catch up with their normal weekly offering know that this can be done safely and easily by dropping a cheque payable to Blessed Robert Grissold Church to Bob Jones at 58 Balsall Street East or give it to one the Finance team who will pass it on. Bob will always ensure that you have a receipt. If you prefer to provide cash that is no problem.
04.11.2020
As I am sure you now realise with the latest government announcement, we will not be holding Mass for at least the next four weeks. We would like to thank all members of the parish for offering to help with the cleaning and opening the church for mass for the last two Sundays which went very well. We had over 20 helpers and considering the size of our congregation we so lucky to have so much help thank you. We will keep you all informed what is happening as soon as more information becomes available. A weekly Spiritual Communion will be available on this website if you wish to use it.
31.10.2020
Please be aware of the following service available in Balsall Common. Please use the phone number or email address if you need any support.
17.10.2020
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.stgandt.solihull.sch.uk
10.10.2020
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
06.09.2020
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!
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
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