Monday, January 30, 2017


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Thursday marks the feast of the Purification of our Lady or the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple. This feast is also known as Candlemas because of the blessing of candles before Mass.
Mass at Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton at 11.00 a.m.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Epiphany IV

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And the tempest-tossed Church all her eyes are on thee; 
They look to thy shining, sweet star of the sea.

This weekend is the fourth after the Epiphany and we have two Sunday Masses:

11.00 a.m. Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton
12.30 p.m. St. Joseph's, Pakington Street, Bradford

It is fortuitous that this weekend's Gospel recalls Christ's sleeping on the boat when a great storm arose which petrified the disciples - the embryonic first bishops. Admonishing them as faint-hearted, men of little faith our Lord then proceeds to calm the sea. The See of today's Peter is also not currently calm. Whereas in Paul's epistle to the Romans, which is the epistle of Sunday's Mass, Paul repeats the Commandments citing adultery first before murder.
We are, I fear, living in uncharted waters in the Church at the moment with many strange and dare I say diabolical events at large abroad. Things are in a mess, a terrible mess and there is no sign that things are going to get better anytime soon. Opacity would appear to be the order of the day, attacks on the Church continue to grow from within and without. There is of course nothing new in any of this and the Church survives and continues, yet it is not a stroll in the park. In fact it's very hard and it is a cross which the faithful have to carry.
The Truth will survive - we are never given a cross too heavy to carry and we have Christ's own assurance that the gates of hell shall not prevail. We have our collective and individual parts to play to save our souls from damnation. We must hear God's word and keep it, we must love and live the Gospel message but nobody ever said it would be easy. The forces of darkness are at large and growing increasingly darker and rebellious.
So what do we do? As the now famous iconic meme says, we keep calm and carry on, even with gathering and raging storms which only add to the struggle. We carry on hearing Mass, accessing the Sacraments - all seven of them, offering our rosaries and prayers without losing faith, hope or charity.

I have always found great consolation in the following (which I've lifted from the internet instead of typing it):
Cardinal Mercier wrote this prayer on the back of a holy picture while on pilgrimage at the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham in England. In 1926, while preaching a retreat, he offered a little commentary on it:
"I am going to reveal to you a secret of holiness and of happiness. Every day for five minutes, silence your imagination, closing your eyes to things of the senses and your ears to all earthly sounds so as to withdraw into yourselves, and there in the sanctuary of your baptized soul, which is the temple of the Holy Spirit, speak to that Divine Spirit, saying:
Holy Spirit, soul of my soul, I adore Thee;
enlighten, guide, strengthen and console me;
tell me what I ought to do and command me to do it,
I promise to be submissive in everything that Thou shalt ask of me
and to accept all that Thou permittest to happen to me,
only show me what is Thy will.
If you do this, your life will flow along in happiness, serenity, and consolation, even in the midst of sorrows, because grace will be proportioned to your trials, giving you the strength to bear them, and you will arrive at the gates of Paradise laden with merits. This submission to the Holy Spirit is the secret of holiness." 


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Saturday, January 21, 2017

Epiphany III

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I was embarrassed last week to realise that I had advertised the wrong feast - namely not the second Sunday after the Epiphany but that of the Holy Family. Apologies for this. All Masses offered were the "correct" ones.

This Sunday is the third Sunday after the Epiphany and we have three Masses:

11.00 a.m. Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton
12.30 p.m. St. Joseph's, Pakington Street, Bradford
4.00 p.m. St. Anthony's, Bradford Road, Clayton, Bradford

The sung Mass at St. Joseph's on Sunday will be followed by the prayer for the queen and the prayer for the Church. Recessional hymn - Faith of our Fathers.


Thursday, January 12, 2017

Feast of the Holy Family of Nazareth

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Sunday is the feast of the Holy Family and we have three Masses:

8.00 a.m. St. Anne's Cathedral, Cookridge Street, Leeds
11.00 a.m. Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton
12.30 p.m. St. Joseph's, Pakington Street, Bradford

Confessions at call.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Final in series -Cathedral lecture

Fr Andrew Pinsent
The final lecture of the present series will take place this Wednesday, 11th January, usual time and place, i.e., 7.00 p.m. at Wheeler Hall adjacent to the Cathedral.
The speaker will be Fr. Andrew Pinsent, who is returning after giving an excellent lecture in the last session when he spoke on “God, Grace, and Science.”
Fr. Pinsent is Research Director of the Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion at Oxford University, a member of the Theology Faculty there, a Research Fellow of Harris Manchester College and a Catholic priest of the diocese of Arundel and Brighton.
Fr. Pinsent has a D.Phil in high energy physics fromOxford, three degrees in philosophy and theology from the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome and a further Ph.D. in philosophy from Saint Louis University. He is also a member of the United Kingdom Institute of Physics and a tutor of the Maryvale Institute in Birmingham.
Fr. Pinsent's most recent book is The Second-Person Perspective in Aquinas’s Ethics: Virtues and Gifts. Besides academic publications, he is a co-author of the Evangeliumcatechetical course and the CredoApologia, and Lumen pocket books, published by the Catholic Truth Society. He has done much writing work with Fr. Marcus Holden, our first speaker in the present series.

The title of Fr. Pinsent’s lecture on Wednesday is "What is the Good News?” In this he will examine new perspectives on grace from the subject areas of science, philosophy, and theology."

Fr. Pinsent will be bringing along recent DVDs that he has made and a selection of his writings. These will be available to buy.

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Epiphany Sunday

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Sunday sees the celebration of the Epiphany. Masses for this feast:

11.00 a.m. Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton
12.30 a.m. St. Joseph's, Pakington Street, Bradford  Sung Mass

Sunday, January 1, 2017


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Friday is the Feast of the Epiphany but alas is no longer a Holy Day of Obligation. This is a beautiful feast and one which has been celebrated for many centuries in the Roman and Eastern lungs of the Church. There will be two Masses in the EF.
9.30 a.m. at Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton BD23 3AE
7.30 p.m. at St. Austin's, Wentworth Terrace, Wakefield. WF1 3QN (Sung)

The external solemnity of this Feast will be celebrated next Sunday.