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Message From The Parish Priest

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My Dear People,

"The Church is alive and the Church is young. She holds within herself the future of the world and therefore shows each of us the way towards the future." These are the words from the Inauguration of the Pope Benedict which he spoke in his homily that day. Sydney in 2008 Papal Youth Gather witnessed to the youthfulness of he Church and the fecundity of its womb in Baptism.

In the call of the Apostles we hear our Lord's voice attracting the youthful future apostles to his side to work with him for the salvation of souls. Two sets of brothers - James and John and then, today Andrew and Simon Peter are called. They have that enthusiasm which only young people have for they are not jaundiced by failure or fear of failure. Neither are they cynical and worldly wise. They accept our Lord's call to the Apostolic Ministry without a care in the world. Off they go and follow him with simple faith and confidence. They don't ask about the outcome nor do they seek assurances. They have found the Messiah and they are going to follow him. Jesus knows who he is calling. The Chief Apostle - the first to exercise the Office of the Papacy was Simon and straightaway the Lord gave him the new name "Peter". Jesus looked hard at him Saint John tells us. He was a witness to this. Three years later John and Peter would be running together from the Upper Room to witness the Empty Tomb on the first Easter Morn. Little did they know what was going to happen to them.

It is still true is it not that young people have no fear? They get on with it and forge ahead. Couples getting married have no idea what married life might bring but they are buoyed up by their love and optimism and face all things together with each other - then they can handle the whole world. Young priests are the same and young consecrated people - they too know no bounds and communicate the joy of the Lord and the wonderful gift of knowing him and being his priest or consecrated to him in the vows of religion.

What power there is when these elements operate! I feel again and again our youth lack the leadership they need from others just a few years older than themselves. Even to organise them into a football team is something they long for but few adults are around to offer.

The GAA in our area is so good that like and Irish Dancing Classes and the City Football Academy and St Kentigern's school Sports (Mr Neilson) for they lead youngsters out of themselves to join with others in the pursuit of excellence. Father Flynn too is very good at leading the youth as can be seen in his great chaplaincy work at Loreto Catholic High School, Chorlton and at St Edward's Primary School.

So Pray for the youth. God loves them with a special love for their youth. Pray that the Church will be enabled by young apostles of our time, to show Her love and concern for them and that they will not lack leadership which will galvanise them as Catholic Youth so that they can play their part to play in the process. Pray for vocations that young men like Peter and Andrew may experience the calling the Lord to the Sacred Ministry.

God Bless you all,

Father Tom Connolly

FAITH MAGAZINE is on sale at the porch for 1. I recommend for a bit of brain stretching reflection on the nature of faith and the lack of it in Britain at the moment. If you have done further education you should manage the articles.

The CRIB OFFERING raised 314 for the Catholic Children's Rescue Society. I have sent the cheque off now. They wrote a lovely letter thanking you for the wrapped gifts for the children at Christmas. It was signed by Sister Rita.

IRISH COMMUNITY CARE MANCHESTER are looking for a Two (2) Advice and Information Workers (p/t) 22 hours per week at Salary of 10,475. Experience of Welfare Benefits System and working within the VOLUNTARY SECTOR IS ESSENTIAL . Clean current driving licence and car is essential. Application Forms and job description from Deirdre Carroll at Irish Community Care, 289 Cheetham Hill Rd. M8 OSN 0161 205 9105 Email:mcr.irish@zetnet.co.uk Interviews on Mon 9th Feb; closing date 26th Jan.

Young, Gifted and Green St Bede's College: Saturday 7th March the award winning "Young , gifted and Green" Irish Troupe from St Bede's College will be staging its annual Irish Charity Concert at he Gorton Monastery as part of the 2009 Manchester Irish Festival. Special guests include dancers form the Keegan-Kennedy School of Irish Dancing. All proceeds to "Lourdes Pilgrimage and the Monastery Trust". Tickets are limited and priced at 20 Adults/ 15 Concessions. Buy in advance from St Bede's 226 3323 or Monastery Box Office 0845 600 9370.

XAVERIAN COLLEGE The Final Formal Dinner Dance for the Manchester Old Xaverians will take place on Sat 28th Feb at the G.M.P Social Club, Hough End, Chorlton. The guest of Honour is Brother Cyril CFX (Head 1962 - 1990) all past students and staffs are invited. The cost is 20 per person from Mr Morrisson via the College -224 1781. Cheques made to "Manchester Old Xaverians.".

Bidding Prayers

Bidding Prayers 2nd Sunday of he Year B

Priest: With the call of the Apostles we come to our Lord's public Ministry and the beginning of the apostolate. We come now as ones who have received he faith of the apostles and we seek the Lord's help in all things obedient to his Divine teaching.

Reader: For the Apostolic College of Bishops in union with the Successor of St Peter - spread throughout the world - that they will be faithful to the Master who has commissioned them to go out in his name and to bear fruit - fruit that will last and we pray for our own Bishop Brain. Lord hear us.

For all lay apostles who are carrying out he work of Christ in teaching and ministering to others in the name of the church. We pray especially for catechists and our Primary school teachers and young parents. Lord hear us

We commend to God all engaged couples beginning the preparation Course for Marriage next weekend in our Deanery - strengthen their love for each other and deepen their appreciation of God's plan for Christian Marriage. Lord hear us.

For all who are sick and seek our prayers for healing and courage in their pain: Elizabeth Wallace, Elizabeth Toner, Elizabeth Macdonald, Anthony Fitzgerald, Bernard Murray, Steven Tivnan, Sam O'Keefe and Mary Geraghty. Lord hear us.

May God show his face in the kingdom of heaven to our brothers and sisters who have recently died: Marge Featherstone, Doreen Gregory, Patrick Green, Grace McDermott, Bernadette Killdunne, Teresa Hamilton, John Kerrigan, Ken Wyatt, Jim Doherty, Margaret Nattras, Eddie Gorman AND for all those whose anniversaries we recall commending hem to God's tender mercy: Martin McDonagh, Michael Foy Marty Crehan, John Moloney (vigil) Tim Moloney.

May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.

O Mary Conceived without sin. /R Pray for us who have recourse to thee. Mary you are the Queen of the Apostles - pray for us now: Hail Mary, full of grace...

Priest: O Lord and heavenly Father help us to be faithful in listening to your call and responding to I in faith. We ask for these our needs in faith and trust that you listen to our every prayer. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.