Fr Liam will be returning to Durham this week, for his final PhD exam – please pray for a good result! There will be a special Mass at St Cuthbert’s on Wednesday 8th December at 7pm, to celebrate Fr Liam’s time with us, with refreshments afterwards. Everyone is welcome, but please book a place at Mass in the usual way.
Fr Liam included the following in the Acknowledgements for his thesis: I owe a particular debt of gratitude to the parishioners of St Cuthbert’s and the students of the Catholic Society, Durham. Their kindness, hospitality, and Christian faith was a constant source of encouragement these past three years. Deo Gratias.
Gospel Reflection & Coffee Morning; join us at 10.30am to reflect on the readings for this Sunday’s Mass. The reflection will last about 50 minutes and, after a 10-minute break, our social coffee morning will start around 11.30am. You’re welcome to join us for the whole two hours, but you’re also welcome to leave after the Gospel Reflection, or join us for social time at 11.30am. We will meet on Zoom; for the login details, see the St Cuthbert’s Parish Community Facebook group, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Morning Prayer of the Church; Monday-Friday at 8.00am, on Zoom.
With Christmas fast approaching please keep the Church flowers in mind. It is incredible to believe that, with all the lockdowns, it is now two years since – apart from a wedding – we have been able to do fresh flowers. During this time flowers have increased unbelievably in price. Any donations will be very welcome either through the Donation Box in the Narthex or directly with Cliona Kear. Would you like to support an arrangement in memory of a loved one, a birthday or any occasion special to you? Please contact Cliona Kear on 0191 386 3400 or email@example.com
The PPC meeting on 12th November would normally have been a Parish Assembly, where elections for new members of the PPC would have been held. As this could not happen effectively at an online meeting, members whose term would normally be over have agreed to carry on for the present. It is hoped that by the next Assembly in May 2022 we will be able to have a face to face meeting where elections can take place. In the meantime, if you are interested in contributing to the work of the PPC, please get in touch with Father Andrew or Helen Schofield via the parish office.
Children’s Liturgy Live Sessions have started again. Because of Safeguarding regulations and to minimise COVID risks, parents and carers are advised that they are no longer able to attend the sessions unless they are a designated helper. If you would like to become a helper (either leading or supporting the sessions), please let Fr Andrew or Mandy Hampshire know – we are always looking for new recruits
The next collection is Sunday 5th December. Donations can be brought in at any time and left in the box provided. Any of the following items are welcome :- toilet rolls, tinned (tomatoes, fish, chick peas), biscuits, sugar, rice. Thank you.
This Advent, please support our local charity, St Cuthbert’s Care, which provides frontline registered care services for people with complex disabilities, residential homes and fostering for young people, and two Catholic nursing homes for older people. Your Advent donations will help to purchase gifts for residents in care, and electronic devices to help them stay connected. https://stcuthbertscare.org.uk/
We have added a page to the parish website, containing a transcription of all of the information on our parish Roll of Honour. It can be found in the ‘About Us’ section. Some research has been done on a few of the men named on the roll, but if you have a relative named there, and have information that you wish the parish to preserve, please send it via the parish office.
The parish has a Reading Group which discusses all sorts of literature (not just theology, nor only Christian writing). All members of the parish are welcome to join, including undergraduates and postgraduates. The group is currently meeting on Zoom.
Our next meeting is on Tuesday 7 December at 8pm, when we will be discussing Derek Scally’s The Best Catholics in the World: The Irish, the Church and the End of a Special Relationship
Today, the Church begins the Season of Advent, the time of waiting for the coming of Jesus at Christmas. It’s a time of hope and expectation. The child Jesus will come as a Saviour, bringing joy to the whole world. But in today’s Gospel, Jesus warns his disciples of a time of trial to come, with natural disasters and great disturbances. He tells them to stand firm.
As we look around our world, today may seem a time of trial, with Covid and climate change, wars and famines in different parts of the world. Many people feel fearful and anxious; some look for scapegoats, while others suspect dark conspiracies. As Christians, however, we are called to be people of hope and not of fear. Whatever difficulties and challenges we may be facing, we believe that our future is in God’s hands, and so we have no reason to be fearful. Jesus teaches his disciples to stay awake, to pray at all times, and to avoid getting too caught up in the ‘cares of life.’ This world will pass away, but the teaching of Jesus will not pass away. Our faith and our hope is in him.
Thank you to all the volunteers who helped to open St Cuthbert’s during Lumiere. We had a total of 171 visits on the three evenings that the church was open.
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