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This weekend, 12/13 June, a Pastoral Letter from Archbishop Bernard will be read out in churches across the Archdiocese. The Pastoral Letter, marking the 11th Sunday in Ordinary Time, outlines the vision for the Archdiocese as we move forward. Our vision is to be a Catholic diocese which is faithful to the mission entrusted to us by Jesus Christ, full of missionary disciples who work together co-responsibly in vibrant communities of faith, joyful in their service of God and neighbour. The Diocesan Vision: Unfolding God's Plan. How can you be part of it?
20/05/21 CRY FOR HOPE Standing alongside Palestinians. Longing for Peace and Justice. Do come and stand still outside St Andrew’s Methodist Church, Pump Street, Worcester WR1 2QT Saturday 22nd May between 2.00pm and 3.00pm You don’t need to come at 2pm and you don’t need to stay for an hour. But please wear a mask, stand socially distanced, and remember to check in with the QR code or sign in, for Covid-19 compliance (as we are using the Church’s forecourt). Do feel free to pass this notice on. Rev Helen Caine cryforhope.org
28/09/20 To meet demand from this Sunday we are having an extra Sunday Mass at George's at 8.00 am. Join us and beat the rush.
As time progresses and we pray that the worst of the virus has passed so we look eagerly to the re-opening of our churches and the celebration of the Mass when it is safe to do so in compliance with public health measures. Here is an update on the situation from the archbishops of England and Wales including our own Archbishop Bernard. Read More 28/03/20
The Catholic Church will rededicate England as Mary’s Dowry on Sunday 29 March - the Sunday following the feast of the Annunciation. The original dedication of England to Mary was made by King Richard II in 1381 at Westminster Abbey. The 2020 rededication was due to be held simultaneously in the Walsingham shrine and in all churches and cathedrals in England, but given the current coronavirus pandemic it will now be an individual event taking place in homes up and down the country, and via live streaming. IN CATHOLIC WORCESTER,, we will pray the prayer of rededication together at the end of our live streamed Mass. Please join in. The prayer can be found here: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5dd26c39e4888e54689c5a3f/t/5e6a19d6530e09007263738b/1584011742885/Prayers+of+The+Rededication.pdf
IN FULL: Pope Francis's homily at the extraordinary Urbi et Orbi: “When evening had come” (Mk 4:35). The Gospel passage we have just heard begins like this. For weeks now it has been evening. Thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities; it has taken over our lives, filling everything with a deafening silence and a distressing void, that stops everything as it passes by; we feel it in the air, we notice in people’s gestures, their glances give them away. We find ourselves afraid and lost. Like the disciples in the Gospel we were caught off guard by an unexpected, turbulent storm. We have realized that we are on the same boat, all of us fragile and disoriented, but at the same time important and needed, all of us called to row together, each of us in need of comforting the other. On this boat… are all of us. Just like those disciples, who spoke anxiously with one voice, saying “We are perishing” (v. 38), so we too have realized that we cannot go on thinking of ourselves, but only together can we do this.
It is easy to recognize ourselves in this story. What is harder to understand is Jesus’ attitude. While his disciples are quite naturally alarmed and desperate, he stands in the stern, in the part of the boat that sinks first. And what does he do? In spite of the tempest, he sleeps on soundly, trusting in the Father; this is the only time in the Gospels we see Jesus sleeping. When he wakes up, after calming the wind and the waters, he turns to the disciples in a reproaching voice: “Why are you afraid? Have you no faith?” (v. 40).
Let us try to understand. In what does the lack of the disciples’ faith consist, as contrasted with Jesus’ trust? They had not stopped believing in him; in fact, they called on him. But we see how they call on him: “Teacher, do you not care if we perish?” (v. 38). Do you not care: they think that Jesus is not interested in them, does not care about them. One of the things that hurts us and our families most when we hear it said is: “Do you not care about me?” It is a phrase that wounds and unleashes storms in our hearts. It would have shaken Jesus too. Because he, more than anyone, cares about us. Indeed, once they have called on him, he saves his disciples from their discouragement.
The storm exposes our vulnerability and uncovers those false and superfluous certainties around which we have constructed our daily schedules, our projects, our habits and priorities. It shows us how we have allowed to become dull and feeble the very things that nourish, sustain and strengthen our lives and our communities. The tempest lays bare all our pre-packaged ideas and forgetfulness of what nourishes our people’s souls; all those attempts that anesthetize us with ways of thinking and acting that supposedly “save” us, but instead prove incapable of putting us in touch with our roots and keeping alive the memory of those who have gone before us. We deprive ourselves of the antibodies we need to confront adversity. In this storm, the façade of those stereotypes with which we camouflaged our egos, always worrying about our image, has fallen away, uncovering once more that (blessed) common belonging, of which we cannot be deprived: our belonging as brothers and sisters.
“Why are you afraid? Have you no faith?” Lord, your word this evening strikes us and regards us, all of us. In this world, that you love more than we do, we have gone ahead at breakneck speed, feeling powerful and able to do anything. Greedy for profit, we let ourselves get caught up in things, and lured away by haste. We did not stop at your reproach to us, we were not shaken awake by wars or injustice across the world, nor did we listen to the cry of the poor or of our ailing planet. We carried on regardless, thinking we would stay healthy in a world that was sick. Now that we are in a stormy sea, we implore you: “Wake up, Lord!”.
“Why are you afraid? Have you no faith?” Lord, you are calling to us, calling us to faith. Which is not so much believing that you exist, but coming to you and trusting in you. This Lent your call reverberates urgently: “Be converted!”, “Return to me with all your heart” (Joel 2:12). You are calling on us to seize this time of trial as a time of choosing. It is not the time of your judgement, but of our judgement: a time to choose what matters and what passes away, a time to separate what is necessary from what is not. It is a time to get our lives back on track with regard to you, Lord, and to others. We can look to so many exemplary companions for the journey, who, even though fearful, have reacted by giving their lives. This is the force of the Spirit poured out and fashioned in courageous and generous self-denial. It is the life in the Spirit that can redeem, value and demonstrate how our lives are woven together and sustained by ordinary people – often forgotten people – who do not appear in newspaper and magazine headlines nor on the grand catwalks of the latest show, but who without any doubt are in these very days writing the decisive events of our time: doctors, nurses, supermarket employees, cleaners, caregivers, providers of transport, law and order forces, volunteers, priests, religious men and women and so very many others who have understood that no one reaches salvation by themselves. In the face of so much suffering, where the authentic development of our peoples is assessed, we experience the priestly prayer of Jesus: “That they may all be one” (Jn 17:21). How many people every day are exercising patience and offering hope, taking care to sow not panic but a shared responsibility. How many fathers, mothers, grandparents and teachers are showing our children, in small everyday gestures, how to face up to and navigate a crisis by adjusting their routines, lifting their gaze and fostering prayer. How many are praying, offering and interceding for the good of all. Prayer and quiet service: these are our victorious weapons.
“Why are you afraid? Have you no faith”? Faith begins when we realise we are in need of salvation. We are not self-sufficient; by ourselves we founder: we need the Lord, like ancient navigators needed the stars. Let us invite Jesus into the boats of our lives. Let us hand over our fears to him so that he can conquer them. Like the disciples, we will experience that with him on board there will be no shipwreck. Because this is God’s strength: turning to the good everything that happens to us, even the bad things. He brings serenity into our storms, because with God life never dies.
The Lord asks us and, in the midst of our tempest, invites us to reawaken and put into practice that solidarity and hope capable of giving strength, support and meaning to these hours when everything seems to be floundering. The Lord awakens so as to reawaken and revive our Easter faith. We have an anchor: by his cross we have been saved. We have a rudder: by his cross we have been redeemed. We have a hope: by his cross we have been healed and embraced so that nothing and no one can separate us from his redeeming love. In the midst of isolation when we are suffering from a lack of tenderness and chances to meet up, and we experience the loss of so many things, let us once again listen to the proclamation that saves us: he is risen and is living by our side. The Lord asks us from his cross to rediscover the life that awaits us, to look towards those who look to us, to strengthen, recognize and foster the grace that lives within us. Let us not quench the wavering flame (cf. Is 42:3) that never falters, and let us allow hope to be rekindled.
Embracing his cross means finding the courage to embrace all the hardships of the present time, abandoning for a moment our eagerness for power and possessions in order to make room for the creativity that only the Spirit is capable of inspiring. It means finding the courage to create spaces where everyone can recognize that they are called, and to allow new forms of hospitality, fraternity and solidarity. By his cross we have been saved in order to embrace hope and let it strengthen and sustain all measures and all possible avenues for helping us protect ourselves and others. Embracing the Lord in order to embrace hope: that is the strength of faith, which frees us from fear and gives us hope. “Why are you afraid? Have you no faith”? Dear brothers and sisters, from this place that tells of Peter’s rock-solid faith, I would like this evening to entrust all of you to the Lord, through the intercession of Mary, Health of the People and Star of the stormy Sea. From this colonnade that embraces Rome and the whole world, may God’s blessing come down upon you as a consoling embrace. Lord, may you bless the world, give health to our bodies and comfort our hearts. You ask us not to be afraid. Yet our faith is weak and we are fearful. But you, Lord, will not leave us at the mercy of the storm. Tell us again: “Do not be afraid” (Mt 28:5). And we, together with Peter, “cast all our anxieties onto you, for you care about us” (cf. 1 Pet 5:7). Source: https://catholicherald.co.uk/in-full-pope-franciss-homily-at-the-extraordinary-urbi-et-orbi
24/03/20 Following the announcement of the Prime Minister on Monday with immediate restrictions on movement, the implications for the parishes of St George’s and Our Lady Queen of Peace are as follows:
Our churches must close, but there will remain a private Mass offered each day and Sunday Mass will be streamed on the Catholic Worcester Facebook page at 9.00 am.
All weddings and baptisms will be postponed whilst restrictions remain in place and will be re-arranged once there is clarity that groups may assemble
Funerals will continue, but there are important changes. Any cremation will be held at Astwood Crematorium and any burial will have a graveside service with immediate family only. The departed will be the intention for the private Mass at 9.00 am on the day of the funeral. There will be a suitable memorial Mass for all those who have died during this time in due course.
The parish office will be closed. Please contact by email if possible or phone. Please do not visit to avoid unnecessary transmission of the virus
All activities in the parish halls will be suspended except that associated with the provision of nursery education for essential workers at Our Lady Queen of Peace. Any decisions on this activity will be made by the operators.
We will continue to update as circumstances allow.
Please keep safe, follow the Government’s requirements and we can look forward to meeting around the altar of the Lamb when restrictions are lifted.
21/03/20 We can't be together as the people of God but there are opportunities to remain close to, through prayer. St George's will be open each day from 9.30 am to 7pm Our Lady's will be open from 11am to 4pm Let's continue to be a community of prayer. But remember social-distancing. Please note there will be no public masses. Private masses will be streamed live on the Catholic Worcester Facebook page, Sundays at 9.00 am, for more information please go to: https://www.facebook.com/CatholicWorcs
18/03/20 FROM FRIDAY THE OBLIGATION TO ATTEND MASS IS SUSPENDED. THERE WILL BE NO PUBLIC MASS. EACH PRIEST WILL CONTINUE TO OFFER THE SACRIFICE OF THE MASS BUT IN PRIVATE.