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. UPDATE 12/12: Please note that all midweek masses are cancelled this week due to poor weather. Please accept my apologies for the inconvenience.
|30.11.-1||Meditations before the Blessed Sacrament on Wednesday evenings||Meditations on the Eucharist, Church and mission continue after Mass on Wednesdays. This is a wonderful opportunity to deepen our knowledge and love of Christ and his Church and to find peace in the presence of Our Lord in the Sacrament of the Altar. All welcome.|
|30.11.-1||Millennium Project 'The Bottle'||The money collected in our Bottle was counted and amounted to £110 which will go to the Columban Fathers. Thanks to Carol and Sue.|
|30.11.-1||Migrants Day||Last week’s appeal raised £237.79. Thank you for your generosity, the Centre will be delighted- Ian Lester.|
|09.07.2016||Church Consecration||This is a very special year in the life of our parish, as our church will be consecrated on 9th July by Archbishop Bernard Longley. Preparations are already underway, both for the consecration service itself, and for various fund-raising activities. Updates on our progress so far are published in our Easter newsletter available online (along with our weekly Sunday bulletin) on this website For more details of how you can be involved, please speak to Joe Martin or Ian Clarke, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.|
|10.07.2016||Candle of Dedication||The dedication for this week is Francis Clements|
|10.07.2016||Prayer Life||The meditations and instruction on prayer in the Christian spiritual life continue on Wednesday during exposition of the Blessed Sacrament|
|10.07.2016||Ethiopia Appeal and Collection||There is a serious food crisis in Ethiopia. Extreme weather shifts, part of the El Nino effect, mean severe drought has left millions of people in need of emergency food aid. 400,000 children are already suffering from malnutrition and we need to act now to prevent a far more terrible crisis. Please give to the collection today for CAFOD's emergency humanitarian response. And please pray for those who are suffering.|
|10.07.2016||Consecration||A huge thank you to all those who worked to make the Consecration of our church such a blessed occasion yesterday. There will be a more in depth write up of the mass and celebrations soon!|
|10.07.2016||Consecration Pictures||Pictures of the consecration celebration are now available by clinking on the link or accessing the Parish Archive via the menu.|
|12.07.2016||Mass time change for this week||Please note that this week's Tuesday Mass is earlier than usual and will be at 9.30 am to allow Fr Frank to attend the monthly Deanery Meeting of clergy|
|17.07.2016||Candle of Dedication||The dedication for this week is Richard Brennan|
|17.07.2016||Car Park||Thank you to Paul Ryan for his generous donation of time and materials in repairing the gulley in the car park. If anyone would like to talk to Paul about driveways, paving or landscaping please call him on 07831 386621|
|24.07.2016||Candle of Dedication||The dedication for this week is for Jo Nijst|
|24.07.2016||Consecration candles||We would like to thank those who donated the four consecration candles put up in the church. These are in memory of the following. Bridge and Perry family, Cotterill family, McLean family, Daniel Mark Lester and Amy Pullen|
|24.07.2016||Fr Frank on holiday||Father Frank is on holiday this week. There will be a Eucharistic Service at 10.00am on Tuesdays while he is away. There will be no Mass with the Anointing of the Sick in July and no First Friday Mass in August.|
|24.07.2016||Baptism of Eve Elizabeth Ryder||We pray for Eve and for her family, godparents and friends as they gather, after Mass today, for her Baptism.CAFOD Collection|
|24.07.2016||CAFOD Collection||Thank you so much for the generous CAFOD donations collected in the last two weeks. An exceptional total of £382 was raised and that is without the Gift Aid extra reimbursement which will make the final total well in excess of £400. Thank you especially to all who took the time to fill in their details|
|31.07.2016||Fr Martin Newell CP||We look forward to welcoming Fr Martin who will celebrate Mass here next Sunday.|
|31.07.2016||Candle of Dedication||The dedication for this week is for Jo Nijst|
|31.07.2016||Fr Frank on holiday Please Note||Whilst Fr. Frank is away the only celebration through the week will be a Eucharistic Service at 10.00am on Tuesday. Normal service will be resumed on Wednesday 10th August with Mass, followed by Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and meditations until 8.00pm. There will be no First Friday Mass in August|
Carol Service – Sunday, 17th December. at 6.30pm. It is always followed by refreshments including mince pies. If you are able and willing to contribute, please put you name on the paper at the back of the church today
Please note that all midweek Masses are cancelled this week due to poor weather. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience.
Thank you all for supporting this venture. We collected over £230 for Parish Funds. Also, HCPT benefitted by £55 from the sale of cards and calendars. Many thanks
Christmas Cards and Advent Calendars are on sale until 24th December. All proceeds will go towards the expenses of Group 83.
The tree is now up at the back of church. The gifts we collect will be given to those who are struggling this Christmas either through illness or difficult social situations. Many of the children's gifts will be distributed via "Hudsons care" Birmingham. Please take one or more tags and leave your present with the tag under the tree on or before next Sunday, 17th December.
Raffle Tickets are available at the back of the Church today. The tickets are £1.00 each or £5.00 for a book. There are great prizes. Please collect your tickets today and sell as many as you can. The stubs and money can be returned each week after Mass. Please return any unsold tickets in order that they might be sold - Time is short for us to make a success of this - hopefully this will serve to concentrate our efforts. Thank you for your efforts. The draw will take place after mass next Sunday
We are looking for some help to clear the gutters on the church on Saturday 9th December at 10-00 am for about an hour, ready for the Gardner to clear the leaves the following week. If you can spare an hour it would be very much appreciated. Please contact Joe Martin.
The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is usually offered on the last Thursday evening of every month - it has been moved this month to the Thursday morning of 7th December. All those who are challenged by their suffering in body, mind or spirit are welcome to receive this sacrament of Christ's healing. This is a practice which dates back to the earliest Church and is encouraged in scripture, where it is written: 'Are there any who are sick among you? Let them send for the priests of the Church, and let the priests pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord; and the prayer of faith will save the sick persons, and if they have committed any sins, their sins will be forgiven them' (The Letter of James 5: 14-15).
You are invited to share in these Wednesday evening meditations which will focus on the last things heralded by the coming of Christ at the end of time. In the Eucharist we have a foretaste of the future gathering of all things in unity in Christ. Why not use the Wednesdays of Advent and Christmastide to reflect on the mystery of our crucified, risen and ascended Lord who comes to us in the most holy Sacrament of the Altar? This will also help us to "stay awake" and be more watchful and aware of the ways in which Our Lord comes to us always and everywhere in the sacrament of each present moment. Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, meditations and silent prayer will take place after the 7.00pm Wednesday Mass and will finish with Benediction at 8.00pm. All welcome.
Get together this Wednesday, 6th December. We meet at 10.30am in BRG car park for onward visit to Melbicks Garden Centre.
Sara, Simon and Sophia are so pleased to announce that Phoebe Catharine Maria was born 30th November at 2.10pm, weighing 8lb 3ozs. Father Frank and Sandra are delighted to have another grandchild.
www.covrefugee.org. Asylum seekers, looking to obtain refugee status, need the Centre, a mix of paid staff and volunteers, to help them negotiate the many forms and demands confronting them. They may need financial support to attend immigration interviews in London or Liverpool, signposting to food banks or receiving help in getting a hot meal, when their £36.95/week for food and personal needs doesn't quite stretch. Immigration and Asylum Law support is available along with Men’s and Women's Groups and help in learning English to support their integration. Being alone in a foreign land can test the most resilient. Some, who have endured things we cannot imagine, may need specialist help. Those already here who have met verbal and physical abuse, or are at risk, may also need support from the Safeguarding Unit. Having achieved refugee status, together with migrants from other countries, they may need help in finding work or accommodation – the Work and Wellbeing Group and the Housing Group are there for them. No matter what their need, the Centre tries to help them. The Centre is heavily dependent on donations from people like you; please be as generous as you can – thank you.
The tree is now up at the back of church. The gifts we collect will be given to those who are struggling this Christmas either through illness or difficult social situations. Many of the"children's gifts will be distributed via "Hudsons care" Birmingham. Please take one or more tags and leave your present with the tag under the tree on or before 17th December. Many thanks to the children from the Children's Liturgy Group who decorated the tags for the children.
The Plan is currently underway and during the month of November every household in Balsall Parish and Balsall Common received a Household Questionnaire which we were encouraged to complete and return. The questionnaire seeks ideas and opinions on a variety of issues within the Balsall Parish and Balsall Common area. Their ideas and opinions will create the Balsall Parish Neighbourhood Development Plan, a planning policy document which will state which community facilities should be developed, upgraded or enhanced from 2019 to 2033. If you have not completed the questionnaire, the deadline having been extended, you are invited to complete the document within the next couple of days.
There is no Mass on Thursday this week but there will be a Eucharistic Service at 10.00am. The Mass with the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick is transferred to Thursday 7th December at 10.00am.
Quiet reflection on the miracle of the Eucharist Mass, as is usual on a Wednesday, will be followed by Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, with meditations on the Holy Eucharist and silent prayer until Benediction at 8.00 p.m. In our busy lives it is essential to come apart with Christ from time to time - to be with him, to wait upon him and to listen for his voice speaking in the depths of our hearts.
If anyone has any holly we can have for the advent wreath it would be very much appreciated, variegated would be a bonus. Please contact Pam Martin.
Walk with Me booklets available at the back of church to help us to reflect and pray through Advent in preparation for Christmas.
Raffle Tickets: Available at the back of the Church today. The tickets are £1.00 each or five pounds for a book. There are great prizes. Please collect you tickets today and sell as many as you can. The stubs and money can be returned each week after Mass - Time is short for us to make a success of this - hopefully this will serve to concentrate our efforts.
Do you support Catholic schools and the right of Catholics to send their children to them? Then we need you to make your voice heard. The Government is making a critical decision on whether to overturn the admissions cap which prevents Catholic schools from allowing all Catholic pupils to attend. They have acknowledged that this policy discriminates against Catholics and promised to abandon it, now we need you to tell them not to U-turn on their promise to Catholics. Visit http://catholicnews.org.uk/education-cap or search for "Catholic Education" in your search engine to write to the Government and urge them to drop their policy which bans new Catholic schools