30 AUGUST – 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time




James & Edith Hooper RIP

Mary Barton RIP

Anne & Ann Tyrer RIP




OUR LADY’S and Ss PETER & PAUL’S – Both churches are now open for Sunday Vigil and Sunday Masses.  Social distancing rules require all parishioners wishing to attend, to contact the relevant parish office in order to reserve their place at Mass each week.  Please wear a mask.


This Week    
E. Minister Reader
Next Week    
Ministry E. Minister Reader



Please continue to contact the parish office on Thursdays to reserve your place(s) at Our Lady’s on 01772 812242 between 10.30am and 3pm – or email olhct@rcaol.org.uk – and on Fridays to reserve your place(s) for Ss Peter & Paul on 01704 822618 between 10.30am and 3pm,  or email ssppm@rcaol.org.uk

Please note that, due to social-distancing rules,  stewards may struggle to accommodate anyone who has not reserved a place at Mass.  Contact the parish office on Thursdays and Fridays (10.30am – 3pm).
Your help on this is greatly appreciated – it helps us to keep everyone safe.


Thank you to those who have kindly been supporting the parish financially too, throughout this period, by your standing order donations and those who have sent cheque donations. I am very grateful.
If you haven’t already done so, please consider taking out a standing order with your bank. Again, please contact the parish office on Thursdays (Our Lady’s) or Fridays (Ss Peter & Paul) to arrange this.

Don’t forget that Masses will continue to be live-streamed and televised for many months yet, so you can still take part in Sunday worship and the Act of Spiritual Communion will continue to be an important part of people’s worship for the foreseeable future. Please remember that the Sunday obligation remains lifted. This is especially important for those over 70 and those with underlying health issues, who may be wary of attending public events.
If you have any queries or concerns, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

1st Reading: Jeremiah 20:7-9, The word of the Lord has meant insult for me
Psalm 62, For you my soul is thirsting, O Lord my God
2nd Reading: Romans 12:1-2, Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice
Gospel: Matthew 16:21-27, If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself
Gospel acclamation: Alleluia, alleluia! May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ enlighten the eyes of our mind, so that we can see what hope his call holds for us. Alleluia!
Communion antiphon: How great is the goodness Lord, that you keep for those who fear you

For all those who are suffering from loneliness and feeling isolated, that the Spirit will both comfort them and inspire others to help them,
Lord, in your mercy…
For key workers, medics and especially teachers and staff in schools, colleges and universities, that they may meet the challenges that face them over the course of the next term, with determination, courage, wisdom and compassion,
Lord, in your mercy….
That all citizens throughout the world – and of all ages – will understand more fully, the importance of working together to protect others and resist the temptation to put their own desires first
Lord, in your mercy…


In last Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus entrusts Peter with the leadership of the Church.  But in this Sunday’s reading which follows immediately on from it, Jesus castigates Peter very strongly when he objects to hearing that Jesus will “suffer grievously” and “be put to death”.  Peter’s reaction is one that we all have when we hear that a totally innocent person is made to suffer.  Had we been there, our reaction would probably have been the same as Peter’s.  But Jesus calls him Satan!  The Father’s plan of love for humanity was that his Son would be born in our midst and then suffer and die. It is a divine logic which goes completely against human logic. 

Jesus then goes on to tell the disciples that if they want to follow him, they too will have to take up their cross – there is no other way.

What Jesus was saying to his disciples then, is just as valid to us now.  We shouldn’t be shocked when, in our lives as Christians, we encounter suffering and rejection.  It is an inevitable part of our journey to the Father.


The reflection on the Gospel is provided by Fr Chris Thomas, Director of the Irenaeus Project.

One of the freest people I have ever met is Edwina Gately. For those of you who have never encountered her, she’s a poet, theologian, artist, writer, and lay minister. She has been described as a modern-day mystic and prophet. Edwina came to Southport to speak at one of our conferences several years ago. She was a great communicator but, as she shared her stories about her life’s experience, I realised that I was in the presence of someone very special. She oozed the essence of humanity with her compassion and her understanding. Full of humour and sensitivity, she had no time for the trammels of life and simply responded to where she felt God was leading her; and God has definitely led her.

From Lancaster, she found herself teaching in Africa and then started the Volunteer Missionary Movement. She then spent time reflecting and praying in the Sahara Desert. She went to the USA where she worked with street people and women in prostitution. She has a very simple and profound message that God is with us and particularly to be found in those who are in need. As I spent time with her, I found myself both fascinated and challenged by her freedom. I think too, that I became aware that her freedom to listen to God and to respond to God had cost her a great deal. She has suffered in her following of the promptings of the Spirit. She has been misunderstood and, at times, scapegoated by others who do not quite understand. Still she ploughs on, relentless in her desire to respond to the Gospel.

Listening to Edwina reminded me that the gospel cannot be forced into the parameters that we want it to fit into and sometimes we have to take risks to proclaim the Good News and often what we do won’t be seen as acceptable or even orthodox, but whose approval are we looking for? In last week’s Gospel Matthew told us of Peter’s confession of faith. Today we find Jesus begins to spell out what it means to be a disciple and it’s a hard message to take. The Son of Man was destined to suffer. If you’re going to say that Jesus is the Christ and walk in his way, then you’ll discover that real life only comes through suffering. Peter can’t accept that’s God’s way and so Jesus says to him, ‘Get behind me Satan’. In other words, it’s a con to believe anything else. Life comes through death. What’s Jesus saying to us? I think he’s saying don’t run away from the pain of the world. Enter into it. To walk the Jesus Way means we have to take on the pain of others and not simply salve our consciences by putting a few pence in a collection or taking the moral high ground on particular issues. We’re to face the pain and take it on and somehow in the doing of that transform it into life. We’re to do the same with our own pain. Don’t run away from it, discover what it means. The hardest times in my life have also been the most life-giving times as I’ve tried to discover what my pain was telling me. Don’t try and protect yourself from hurt. Don’t put up the barriers against love, which always hurts at some point – and yet most of us do.

The truth is that if we try to protect yourselves, if we try to keep in control, then we will lose our lives because that keeping in control is not life. What drives us out of fear and grows out of insecurity and keeps us independent and untouchable, is shielding us from life. The only way to enter into life is to enter it through death. You’ve got to let yourself be vulnerable. You’ve got to let yourself be weak. You’ve got to let yourself be touched and broken. Otherwise those words will simply remain poetry or philosophy. That’s the example of Jesus. Not just when he was hanging on the cross, but every moment of his life. It cost Jesus to heal the sick. It cost him emotionally and physically. It cost Jesus not to give in to his own needs and desires. It cost him to deal with his own pain and hurt, but he did it so we would know the truth, that from each death comes life. If we gather here today and say as Peter said, ‘You are the Christ’, let’s do it knowing that it means we walk the real journey of life. That it’s costly but it is life giving.

My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love you above all things, and I desire to receive you into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you.
Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

Offertory boxes for this next year are now available for collection at Mass or from the presbyteries during office hours on Thursdays (Our Lady’s) and Fridays (Ss Peter & Paul)

A CHANCE FOR YOUR WILDLIFE PHOTOGRAPHS TO DARAPPEAR IN OUR JOINT PARISH CALEN FOR 2021!     Amongst other things, the lockdown period has enabled many of us to re-discover the joys of our natural world right here on our doorstep and many children and adults have been using phones and cameras to capture the beauty of God’s world in photographs. We’re inviting our parishioners from both parishes to email their best photographs, so that they can be selected for our first ever joint parish calendar.        There are 3 categories: 9 yrs and under; 10 to 16 yrs and over 17’s.
Photographs must be in landscape format and may have been taken at any time over the last 5 – 6 months
The theme is ‘All Things Bright & Beautiful in West Lancs’
Please convert to a jpeg file and identify the photograph, when you send the email.
It might be flowers or vegetables, birds of wildlife in your garden, or scenes of the countryside when you’ve been out walking.
Many thanks to parishioners who have already been sending their entries in.                                                                              Closing date is FRIDAY 2 OCTOBER
You might like to use the following link to find advice on how to photograph wildflowers and birds https://www.countryfile.com/countryfile-tv-show/countryfile-calendar/countryfile-calendar-competition-2021/
The calendar will be available to purchase in time for Christmas and would make ideal gifts for family and friends!
Proceeds will be shared between our two parishes and another registered charity.

A virtual coffee morning will be held on Sunday 20 September, from 10.30am to 11.10am. This will be held via Zoom, so please email the parish office if you would like to take part, and we will send the link out to you nearer the time. Martin McGrath has kindly agreed to draw numbers for the 200 Club for the lockdown months of March – September.

SPECIAL BLESSINGS THIS WEEK – For all our children, their parents and teachers, assistant teachers, and support staff as they begin a new and challenging term.  Please remember them all in your prayers.

SYNOD 2020 – Revised Schedule
The closing date for receiving online proposals in light of the challenges of Covid-19, is Tuesday 1 September. If you would like to submit your thoughts and ideas, please email the office on: synod2020@rcaol.co.uk
The next period of activity is from 18 October to 4 December, when parishioners will be able to look at the lists of proposals and discuss them via a Zoom meeting / socially-distanced gathering. Parishioners’ views will then be sent to the Synod office.

Many thanks to generous parishioners who have sent in donations to our churches. Your thoughtfulness is very much appreciated.
Instead of putting money in offertory envelopes each week, those who are able to make an offering are asked to complete a Standing Order Mandate for your bank, from either your parish office. We can email the document to you, if you wish, so that you can print off, complete and send to your bank.
Alternatively, you may still wish to write a  cheque (payable to either ‘Our Lady Help of Christians Church’ or ‘Ss Peter & Paul Church Mawdesley’) and post to the presbytery with a covering letter and one offertory envelope for gift aid purposes.
Donating by text / online: Please check the May Newsletters and use the links provided

Locally, there is St Clare’s, Sharoe Green Lane, Fulwood: www.saintclares.co.uk which streams Mass daily at 10am. Please follow the easy links on the website.
https://www.vaticannews.va/en Pope Francis
https://www.churchservices.tv/whats-on-now/ Great selection of Masses and other Church services https://www.lourdes-france.org/en/tv-lourdes/ Mass and daily at 2pm, the Rosary in English
https://www.livemass.org Extraordinary Form (1962 Missal)
Use the website links to EWTN, those who have Sky can tune in on Channel 588, or the Archdiocese to access daily Masses
On the radio: Catholic Radio Channel 0147
Also, you may wish to try the Pray as you Go phone app: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=pl.foxcode.prayasyougo&hl=en

PRAYERS from the Archdiocese, for Stations of the Cross etc: https://www.liverpoolcatholicresources.com/

Please email the Parish Office with details of any other online services you know of that may help parishioners at this very difficult time. We will try to include them in next week’s Newsletter.

31 August – St Aidan & Lindisfarne Saints: St Bede described him as a man of simplicity, poverty and prayer
1 September – St Margaret Clitherow, Martyr: convicted of harbouring priests and crushed to death 1586; also St Anne Line, martyred 1585 and St Margaret Ward, executed 1588
3 September – St Gregory the Great, Pope & Doctor: b.540AD: when elected Pope he sent Augustine to England
4 September – St Cuthbert, Bishop: associated with Lindisfarne – monk and hermit (634 – 687AD)
5 September – St Teresa of Kolkatta, Religious (1915-97) – founded the Missionaries of Charity in India and was awarded the Nobel peace Prize; canonised in 2016

THE CATHOLIC UNIVERSE & TIMES: SPECIAL OFFER! Weekly editions of The Universe (incorporating The Catholic Times) are on special offer at the moment: only £22 for 3 months! To order your own copy of The Universe/Catholic Times, please ring 0203 538 9753 or email: sales@bluemarketmedia.co.uk

CATHOLIC PICTORIAL: To order your own copy of the Catholic Pic please ring 0151 709 7567 or email Kim O’Brien at kim.obrien@cpmmmedia.comSt John Fisher, scholar and bishop

Please use this link to access July’s edition of the Pic: https://catholicpic.us19.list-manage.com/track/click?u=0c53c885ba6459a91db50c18c&id=9a4891ad1a&e=be09e47358