Search
   
 
Header_Church
Reactions
to this post
0

Who packs Your Parachute?


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 09/09/2013

Sometimes in the daily challenges that life gives us, we miss what is really important. We may fail to say hello, please, or thank you, congratulate someone on something wonderful that has happened to them, give a compliment, or just do something nice for no reason. Charles Plumb, a US Naval Academy graduate, was a jet pilot in Vietnam. After 75 combat missions, his plane was destroyed by a surface-to-air missile. Plumb ejected and parachuted into enemy lands. He was captured and spent 6 years in a communist Vietnamese prison. He survived the ordeal and now lectures on lessons learned from that experience. One day, when Plumb and his wife were sitting in a restaurant, a man at another table came up and said, “You’re Plumb! You flew jet fighters in Vietnam from the aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk. You were shot down!” “How in the world did you know that?” asked Plumb. “I packed your parachute,” the man replied. Plumb gasped in surprise and gratitude. The man pumped his hand and said, “I guess it worked!” Plumb assured him, “It sure did. If your chute hadn’t worked, I wouldn’t be here today.” Plumb couldn’t sleep that night, thinking about that man. Plumb says, “I kept wondering what he might have looked like in a Navy uniform: A white hat, a bib in the back, and bell bottom trousers. I wonder how many times I might have seen him and not even said good morning, how are you or anything because, you see, I was a fighter pilot, and he was just a sailor.” Plumb thought of the many hours the sailor had spent on a long wooden table in the bowels of the ship, carefully weaving the shrouds and folding the silks of each chute, holding in his hands each time the fate of someone he didn’t know. Now, Plumb asks his audience, “Who’s packing your parachute?” Everyone has someone who provides what they need to make it through the day. Plumb also points out that he needed many kinds of parachutes when his plane was shot down over enemy territory – he needed his physical parachute, his mental parachute, his emotional parachute, and his spiritual parachute. He called on all these supports before reaching safety. His experience reminds us all to prepare ourselves to weather whatever storms lie ahead. As you go through this week, this month, this year … recognize people who pack your parachute!

Reactions
to this post
0

Covenant Mass in September


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 08/09/2013

Welcome to our Covenant Mass in September. Holy Mass at the Shrine will be on Wednesday 18th September at 7.30pm. Our Ladies Group will lead us in this Mass. One of the easiest ways to know if someone is alive in their faith is to see their generosity in giving their time to others, using their talents to help others become better versions of themselves and who are always prepared to put their hand in their pocket and share what they have. This is a clear sign that we live a dynamic faith – looking to see how, in following God’s will for us, we can help make a better world. I like to invite you to our Mass. Faith in Action: Please bring along your gift for those in need . We are collecting tinned and non-perishable goods which are passed on to the Brothers of Charity and they then distribute them to those in need.

Reactions
to this post
0

Holy Father calls for Day of Prayer for Syria


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 04/09/2013

In his Angelus message on Sunday 1st September, Pope Francis made a passionate appeal for Peace in the world, and especially in war-torn Syria. He has asked Catholics throughout the world to observe a day of fasting and Prayer for Syria next Saturday, 7th September, the Vigil of the Birthday of Our Lady. The Holy Father made his appeal in these words:“To this end, brothers and sisters, I have decided to proclaim for the whole Church on 7 September next, the vigil of the birth of Mary, Queen of Peace, a day of fasting and prayer for peace in Syria, the Middle East, and throughout the world, and I also invite each person, including our fellow Christians, followers of other religions and all men of good will, to participate, in whatever way they can, in this initiative. On 7 September, in Saint Peter’s Square, here, from 19:00 until 24:00, we will gather in prayer and in a spirit of penance, invoking God’s great gift of peace upon the beloved nation of Syria and upon each situation of conflict and violence around the world. Humanity needs to see these gestures of peace and to hear words of hope and peace! I ask all the local churches, in addition to fasting, that they gather to pray for this intention. Let us ask Mary to help us to respond to violence, to conflict and to war, with the power of dialogue, reconciliation and love. She is our Mother: may she help us to find peace; all of us are her children! Help us, Mary, to overcome this most difficult moment and to dedicate ourselves each day to building in every situation an authentic culture of encounter and peace. Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us!”

Reactions
to this post
0

Taste and See Family Mass at the Shrine


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 03/09/2013

Welcome to our Taste and See Family Mass after the Summer break. Our Mass will be this coming Sunday, 8th September (Our Lady’s Birthday) at 3.30pm followed by a shared meal. We continue our theme of what gives us growth in our faith. We have been looking at the four characteristics of a Dynamic Catholic. This Sunday we consider the “heart of the the Gospel” – Generosity. Thinking of Our Lady we see her generous response to God’s call. Thinking of our one and true Saviour – his generosity led him to give all there is to give so that many could be won for God. We want to give generous witness to our faith so that many will start their search to find the heart of God in their lives. We look forward to seeing you.

Reaction
to this post
1

The Early Risers


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 02/09/2013

The Early Risers

Rising early for many people is difficult. It is even discomforting to do so on a Saturday morning, yet perseverance has brought about immense and  unexpected fruits and benefits for those who defied occasionally the peace of their early morning comfort. In this light, we would like to invite all men, young and old to participate in the early morning mass for the month of September. Date: 7th  September 2013 Venue: Schoenstatt  Marian Shrine, Manchester Road Kearsley Bolton, BL48QQ UK. Time: 7am Breakfast follows immediately after Mass. (If you would like to read a short report on the Early Risers Mass Please Click here)

Reactions
to this post
0

The Storm


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 02/09/2013

Years ago, I was enthralled as I listened to a priest who for several years had faithfully served the church as a Retreat Speaker. His responsibilities had taken him all over this country. As he concluded his message, he told of one of the most frightening yet thought-provoking experiences of his life. He had been on a long flight from one place to another. The first warning of the approaching problems came when the sign on the airplane flashed on: Fasten your seat belts. Then, after a while, a calm voice said, “We shall not be serving the beverages at this time as we are expecting turbulence. Please be sure your seat belt is fastened.” As he looked around the aircraft, it became obvious that many of the passengers were becoming apprehensive. Later, the voice of the announcer said, “We are so sorry that we are unable to serve the meal at this time. The turbulence is still ahead of us.” And then the storm broke. The ominous cracks of thunder could be heard even above the roar of the engines. Lightening lit up the darkening skies, and within moments that great plane was like a cork tossed around on a celestial ocean. One moment the airplane was lifted on terrific currents of air; the next, it dropped as if it were about to crash. The priest confessed that he shared the discomfort and fear of those around him. He said, “As I looked around the plane, I could see that nearly all the passengers were upset and alarmed. Some were praying. The future seemed ominous and many were wondering if they would make it through the storm. Then, I suddenly saw a little girl. Apparently the storm meant nothing to her. She had tucked her feet beneath her as she sat on her seat; she was reading a book and every thing within her small world was calm and orderly. Sometimes she closed her eyes, then she would read again; then she would straighten her legs, but worry and fear were not in her world. When the plane was being buffeted by the terrible storm, when it lurched this way and that, as it rose and fell with frightening severity, when all the adults were scared half to death, that marvelous child was completely composed and unafraid.” The priest could hardly believe his eyes. It was not surprising therefore, that when the plane finally reached its destination and all the passengers were hurrying to disembark, our priest lingered to speak to the girl whom he had watched for such a long time. Having commented about the storm and behaviour of the plane, he asked why she had not been afraid. The child replied, “Father, my Dad is the pilot, and he is taking me home.”

There are many kinds of “storms” that buffet us. Physical, mental, financial, domestic, and many other storms can easily and quickly darken our skies and throw our “plane” into apparently uncontrollable movement. We have all known such times, and let us be honest and confess, it is much easier to be at rest when our feet are on the ground than when we are being tossed about a darkened sky. Let us remember: Our Eternal Father is the Pilot. He is in control and He is taking us home…


Reactions
to this post
0

2014 Centenary Banner


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 01/09/2013
CALLING ALL NEEDLECRAFTERS
 As you know next year is the Centenary of  Schoenstatt and, following on from a project on this year’s Family Week, we would like to create a banner to be taken to Schoenstatt next year, which will ultimately hang in our Schoenstatt Centre. If you enjoy sewing, are good at design, or would like to be involved in any other way please come along to our first meeting on Friday 13th September at 7.30 pm in the Coffee Room at the Schoenstatt Centre. This will be a brainstorming meeting to discuss design, materials, size, etc. Please have a think about it and bring along any ideas you might have. We envisage having several meetings over the year to work on the project. Come along, have a chat, have fun, create something beautiful. See you then.
Sheila Lyddieth and Sharron Walsh
newer posts »