Sixth Sunday of Easter 2023


Welcome to the celebration of Holy Mass. If you are visiting our parish you are most welcome, do feel free to introduce yourself and join us for coffee/tea in the church hall after mass. 

Please pray for the sick, housebound and those in the armed forces suffering mentally and physically from the effects of war: Deacon Bernard Curtin, Justin Family members & Jessica, Maureen McDonnell. 

Confessions are available during exposition at St Joseph’s on Friday mornings in the sacristy, At Bampton in the Lady Chapel 4.30-4.50, and of course on request 

Forthcoming Talks by Canon Noakes Emperor Constantine Patron of Christianity? 22nd June 7.30pm 

Church Choir Rehearsals start 7-8pm on Tuesday 16th. Many thanks to those who have volunteered. Any musicians willing to start a small music group also please speak to me. 

Friday Mass a couple of people have asked for the possibility of an evening Mass. My initial thought was that there are evening Masses available at Witney, but I could move the Friday Mass to Friday evening IF people who come would prefer it?! Friday is the least busy of our masses, and so I am willing to explore this as a possibility. PLEASE do let me know which you would prefer. If the feeling is a Friday evening Mass say 6.30pm would be a popular move then we can explore this. I guess it might be good for people who work and for families who would like to come to Mass together. PLEASE let me know! This could be a ‘summer thing’ going back to morning for winter?! 

Ascension Day As a Holyday of Obligation and Celebration, there will be the usual 10am Mass at Burford. There will be a Mass in School at 2.30, and an evening Mass at St Joseph’s at 7pm. 

Social and Fund Raising Committee. I wonder if this is in abeyance because of Covid or perhaps there wasn’t one?! Anyone wishing to be involved, perhaps we could hold a short meeting after Mass on Sunday 21st rather than using up another evening?! I’m aware that the parish debt (Still around £-165,000) will not come down on what comes in on collections alone, especially with interest rates continuing to rise. (£1500 for 2022/£1300 already for this year…) One way to clear the debt would be to sell the land behind the presbytery, but I think holding onto it is the best option for now, not that we really use it for anything, but I imagine that it will only appreciate in value. Short of us receiving a sizable legacy, I can’t see the debt coming down much at all without serious fundraising; a mammoth undertaking! All thoughts and ideas welcome! 

Living Simply CAFOD has suggested 100 ideas to consider. If viewing online just click on thr following link or copy and paste this into your browser.

As part of the response to Pope Francis’ call to live more simply, sustainably and in solidarity with poor communities, there will be a parish ‘Living Simply’ meeting on Friday 2 June after the 6.30 pm Carterton Mass in the St Joseph’s Church hall. The meeting will start at 7.00 pm and all are welcome. 

The St Vincent de Paul Society (SVP) is part of an international Christian voluntary network dedicated to tackling poverty in all its forms. If you, your family or anyone local you know is in need of help (and they don’t have to be Catholic!) note that our small SVP group are happy to try to help. They won’t preach at them or judge them or try to get them to come to church. They just want to help. Perhaps they can give lifts to hospital or shopping, visit to talk through a problem or even give a hand in the garden or in the house. If you know someone SVP might be able to help please contact Fr Paul or Benjamin Shirlaw at St Joseph’s on 07962 510 644. 

Mary’s Special Month of May Holy Rosary will be prayed where possible before all public Masses During May. 

A number of traditions link the month of May to Mary. Alfonso in the thirteenth century wrote in his Cantigas de Santa Maria about the special honouring of Mary during specific dates in May. Eventually, the entire month was filled with special observances and devotions to Mary. 

The origin of the conventional May devotion is still relatively unknown. Herbert Thurston identifies the seventeenth century as the earliest instance of the adoption of the custom of consecrating the month of May to the Blessed Virgin by special observances. It is certain that this form of Marian devotion began in Italy. Around 1739, witnesses speak of a particular form of Marian devotion in May in Grezzano near Verona. In 1747 the Archbishop of Genoa recommended the May devotion as a devotion for the home. Specific prayers for them were promulgated in Rome in 1838. 

According to Frederick Holweck, the May devotion in its present form originated at Rome where Father Latomia of the Roman College of the Society of Jesus, to counteract infidelity and immorality among the students, made a vow at the end of the eighteenth century to devote the month of May to Mary. From Rome, the practice spread to the other Jesuit colleges and thence to nearly every Catholic church of the Latin rite. In Rome by 1813, May devotions were held in as many as twenty churches. From Italy, May devotions soon spread to France. In Belgium, the May devotions, at least as a private devotion, were already known by 1803. The tradition of honouring Mary in a month-long May devotion spread eventually around the Roman Catholic world in the nineteenth century together with a month-long devotion to Jesus in June and the Rosary in October. 

Communion under both kinds The Bishop’s Conference of England and Wales encouraged the re-introduction of communion under both kinds, (both the sacred host and the Precious Blood) on and after Maundy Thursday. I felt this a bit soon, but have prayed about it, and have decided to re introduce the Precious Blood FOR THOSE WHO WISH TO RECEIVE IT ONLY on weekday masses at St Joseph’s. 

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