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Covenant Mass in September 2015


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 26/08/2015

After the Summer break we welcome you to our Covenant Mass on Friday 18th September at 7.30pm at the Shrine followed by light refreshments. The Mass is prepared by the St John Fisher’s Ladies group. We look forward to the World Meeting for Families in Philadelphia in the last week in September and we will start our prayer in preparation for the General Synod on the Family in October. Love is our Mission. The Family Fully Alive. Throughout the year we have meditated on  the mystery of Marriage and Family and have developed clearly our image of Catholic Marriage and Family. For this Mass we will look at the vocation of woman and man, called to be mothers and fathers. In particular we will look at the challenge to have authority as parents and to use that authority for the better of the children. We look forward to seeing you.

This will be Gaspar’s farewell since he returns to Chile to continue his studies. We invite you to make a contribution in the collection at Mass toward a farewell gift for him.

Also please bring a contribution for our food basket which will be passed on to the Brothers of Charity for their work with families in need.

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Family Week 2016 in Marienau


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 25/08/2015

We have just completed a very successful week with our families (youngest was Lucy Martha 10 days old) the oldest would have been approaching their eight decade. We held it in Sneaton Castle in Whitby and it was a wonderful experience – The Castle of my Heart! Now we extend to you an invitation for next year in which our family week will be in Schoenstatt, Germany. Welcome to our Family Week 2016 in Marienau!  This will be our first chance to visit Schoenstatt since the celebration of the Jubilee. The Dates are:

Sunday 24th July -Sunday 31st July 2016. Please make a note of this in your diary.

Those intending to take part should contact Konrad & Anne Ostmeier. Looking forward to seeing you there!

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The Mary Prayer


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 15/08/2015

Recently ordained, Fr. Larry arrived at his first pastoral assignment. He would never forget that first night. He was just dozing off when he heard a voice. “Get up, Father. Someone at 55 Water Street is in desperate need of you.” There was nothing mysterious about the voice. He knew that. In those days, long before electronics, there was a speaking tube that ran from the front door up to the bedroom. There was a megaphone at both ends. If there was an emergency during the night, the caller would speak into the megaphone. His or her voice would be heard upstairs. It was so bitterly cold! He ran down the stairs, pulling his bathrobe around him. The frigid wind had drifted the snow waist-high against the door and the side of the building where the outdoor end of the tube and megaphone hung. There was no one there. He knew that voice was real. He dressed as fast as he could, took his little black bag and plunged into the midnight blizzard. It seemed like hours before he found the house. It was dilapidated and obviously deserted. Still, driven by the urgency of the message he had heard, he knocked and then pounded on the door. There was no answer.  The rear door was ajar, but stuck. He pushed it open finally and stepped inside. In the white glare of moonlight seeping through the dirty windows, he could see a man’s body huddled on what had been the kitchen floor. Fr. Larry knelt beside him. The man was dressed in rags. He was a tramp. The smell of stale beer was almost nauseating. The old man was conscious. He was trembling in the cold. Father wrapped him in his overcoat. He was able to hear his confession. He gave him Holy Communion and anointed him. Afterwards, he told the dying man how he happened to be there. Then he asked the man, “You must have done something special in your life to gain this kind of extraordinary intervention. What was it?” “No. Nothing,” the man mumbled. “I’ve never done anything. I’ve wasted away my whole life — never did anything for anybody…” “But you must have done something,” Fr. Larry persisted. The old man just shook his head. “Nothing.” “I’ll get help.” Father started toward the door. As he reached it, he heard the man say, “Well, there might have been one thing…, ‘cept I don’t like to talk about it, ’cause, I didn’t do it well or nothing.” “What was it?” Fr. Larry whispered. “Aw Father, I don’t like to mention it, `cause I did it when I was drunk, sometimes in bars, making fun of it. I’d do it when I’d go to sleep under bridges with other guys…but I did it all these years….badly though….” “What? What did you do?” “When I was a little kid, my mum told me that if I’d say the ‘Mary Prayer’ every day as often as I would think of it, I wouldn’t die alone…that I wouldn’t die without having a priest to confess to and to give me the Last…Oh Father, I’m dying, ain’t I? And what my mum said was true.” He smiled. Then he sighed, “Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for me, please, now and at the hour of my death.” Then he went home to his Mother, both of them. “The Mary Prayer.” What a simple, hope-filled petition of love! For all of us. Everyday. As often as we think of it.

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Invitation from the Friends of Kearsley Mount Cottage


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 02/08/2015

Celia Eccleston extends an invitation to you for an Evening of Dancing – “Ho Down” -country dancing with “the Hole in the Wall” Band. The Barn Dance will be on Friday 25th September at 7.30pm at St John Fisher’s. Ticket including Supper cost £12.00. This event is organised by the Friends of Kearsley Mount Cottage who are a registered Charity to promote and support our work at  the Schoenstatt Shrine on the St John Fisher Parish Campus. This Dance is a fundraiser to develop a children’d play area in the gardens of the Cottage. Tickets are now be available. Contact Celia Eccleston and the members of the Friends Team.