MASSES AND OTHER INFORMATION
Please visit the Mass Times page for more information on Mass times and other events, or click here.
In consideration for others, the government strongly recommends that face masks/coverings continue to be worn in indoor public spaces. Thank you for helping to keep each other safe by doing this, for sanitising your hands as you enter the church, and for maintaining a reasonable distance from others where feasible.
PARISH OFFICE OPENING HOURS
The parish office opening hours are now from 9am to 12.30pm Tuesday to Friday. The office will be closed from 24th December until Tues 4th January..
CHRISTMAS MASS TIMES
Christmas Eve: 6.00pm & 8.30pm
Christmas Day: 8.45am; 10.15am & 12.00pm
THE CHURCH SYNOD
Pope Francis is gathering the entire Church to a ‘synod’ to unpack the question: ‘What changes need to be made – in myself, in our parish and in the Diocese – to make the church’s mission today more vibrant and effective?’ We are all invited and encouraged to take part. There is a form available at the back of the church to put down your contact details and meeting preference (physical or virtual using Zoom). Once completed, please put your form in the red box labelled ‘Synod’. Thank you for doing this by Sunday 12th December.
CHRISTMAS DAY HAMPERS TO THOSE ALONE
Many thanks for your donations and offers of help. We ideally just need a couple more people who can spend an hour delivering 6 hampers. Please could any further donations be given in the next week so that we can budget for the gifts. Please put donations through the presbytery letterbox or contact: email@example.com or tel. 847804.
As we rejoice in once again celebrating Christmas with our loved ones, let us spread our joy around the world by having a CAFOD World Gift under the tree. From energy saving stoves to weatherproof crops to emergency shelters, CAFOD’s virtual charity gifts help transform the lives of families living in poverty. Buy online here or pick up a catalogue in church.
Please note that on the online version of our newsletter on our website, we will no longer be including the Sunday Message. However, you will be able to view a copy of it here each week.
BREAD AND STARLIGHT
LAMPS Collective presents Bread and Starlight - the story of Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist. In this one-woman show for Advent, Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist, recalls the months of her pregnancy and a very special visitor. Touching on the themes of mystery and miracle, what is temporary and what lasts, Bread and Starlight combines storytelling, song and space for reflection in the lead up to Christmas.
ADVENT AND CHRISTMAS ON OUR WEBSITE
There is an interactive Advent calendar on our website Home page, video reflections in the What’s On section, and activities for primary school children in the Youth section. This News page also contains weekly prayers.
THE UNIVERSE CATHOLIC WEEKLY
The Universe Catholic Weekly is thrilled to announce that they have launched their new online newspaper with the full support of their first subscriber none other than His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols. Order your digital copy by going to www.universecatholicweekly.co.uk or call them on 0743661 7650 and ask for Michelle. Special offer: Only £20 for 3 months.
LENT 2022 PARISH CHARITY FUNDRAISING
During the season of Advent, the PPC ask you to think about charities which we could sponsor during Lent 2022. We would ideally like to fundraise for 2 charities, one local/UK based and one worldwide. Please give this some consideration and send your suggestions for the charities to the parish office by Friday 7th January 2022.
CiA CAROL SERVICE
The Church in Abingdon (CiA) is planning a Carol Service in the Market Place on Saturday 18 December from 11.00am - 12.00pm. The aim is not to collect money but to hand out leaflets about Christmas services in Abingdon churches. We hope that Our Lady & St Edmund's will be represented at the event. If you would like to take part, and/or if you're interested in helping the choir to lead, please let Margaret Hancox know. (01235 524534 or email firstname.lastname@example.org)
ADVENT COLLECTION FOR THE EMMAUS HOME
During the season of Advent we think about those less fortunate than ourselves in our local community. On the third Sunday of Advent, 12th December, we will have a collection for the Emmaus Home in Oxford, for homelessness and rehabilitation. Please donate generously.
Emmaus Oxford offers homeless people in our local area accommodation, support and work. Emmaus believes that those who are homeless need more than a roof over their head to change their lives for the better. Their motto is “give people a bed, and a reason to get out of it.” They take a long-term approach getting to know and support each person living and working with them, preparing individuals for life outside the community and helping them to get ready for paid employment. A sincere thank you to all those people in our parish who have made donations of many and various items to the Emmaus shop in Cowley, and to the parish community of Our Lady and St Edmund of Abingdon for donating one of your Advent collections to Emmaus this year. Find out more on the Emmaus website here.
DONATIONS TO THE FOODBANK
Please don't forget the foodbank!
Regular items needed are:
Sauces for rice - e.g. curry, sweet & sour, etc.
Small tinned baked beans or spaghetti hoops, etc.
Shower gel for men
Sturdy carrier bags
Washing up liquid
Cartons of long life fruit juice
Bottles of squash
Urgent items needed are:
Long life cow’s milk (semi-skimmed or whole)
Bottles of squash
Tinned meat for hot meals – mince, stews, meatballs
J cloths (other brands are available!)
Dried chickpeas and couscous.
Donations can be dropped off at the Foodbank on Northcourt Road on Tuesdays and Fridays between 11am and 1pm.
Last Christmas they gave out Christmas hampers to over 200 local households. As well as Christmas goodies, the parcels contained gifts for children provided by Abingdon Community Events’ Toy Drive. This year, they are doing the same and so are asking for donations of the items below, with best before dates of 26th December or later:
Items for the newsletter should be sent to the parish office (email@example.com) by the Wednesday of each week please. Copies are available in the church. Please keep contributions as brief as possible and please take newsletters home with you. Many thanks.
JTiF (JOURNEYING TOGETHER IN FAITH)
All sessions take place in the Parish Centre on Mondays from 7.30pm to 9pm. These sessions are suitable for any adult with an enquiring mind who wishes to journey further in their faith. It is also suitable for anyone who has completed the RCIA course. Everyone is welcome to attend any or all of the sessions. The sessions will comprise of a video, reflection, discussion, prayer, and a chance to socialise, with refreshments. Please feel free to invite others to these sessions. The full programme can be viewed here or by clicking on the image above - or taking a printed copy from the back of the church.
THANKS FROM SALE OF CHRISTMAS CARDS
A huge thank you from Friends of the Holy Land for raising £1,000 from the sale of Christmas cards and donations.
Christmas Matters, a Fanning the Flame Day, will be taking place on Saturday 4th December from 9:45am-6:00pm at Holy Family, Southampton. This is day for young people to discover why the Incarnation matters, how it must affect our daily lives, from how we treat ourselves and others to our understanding of the dead and belief in the Resurrection. Led by the Dominican Sisters of St Joseph, it's an opportunity for young people to come together and grow in faith and fellowship, and have some fun too! The day is open to young people from 10-21 years of age. There is a cost of £10 and you need to bring your own lunch. For more information and to book a place, simply click on the image above.
Abingdon Scouts & Guides are back! A Christmas postal service run by the Scouts & Guides for delivery in Abingdon, Radley & Shippon only. Guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve. Costs 30p per card and these may be deposited in the box at the back of the church. Collections from 13th November to 12th December. All proceeds to Scout & Guide funds to provide additional facilities for young people. Thank you for your support.
UPCOMING DIOCESAN COURSES
Passing on love for the Eucharist to our Children
In this Year of the Eucharist our Formation for Mission Team is offering an opportunity to share advice and ideas on how to foster love for the Eucharist in our families. We are offering 4 online sessions for parents, grandparents, catechists, teachers and everyone passionate about passing on love for the Eucharist to our children, led by Sr Hyacinthe and Angela Wood, with practical advice, discussions, testimonies and prayer, finishing each session with a Adoration.
The sessions will run on Mondays, from the 22nd November to the 13th December at 7.00pm and will be:
Why the Eucharist is Important and how to pass on love of the Eucharist.
Going to Mass as a Family.
Making the Home a Place of Communion.
Taking and Making Opportunities to foster love for the Eucharist
You can register for this course here.
Workshops for Parish Readers
Two workshops to equip parish readers will be offered on Saturdays 4th and 11th of December, from 10am to 1pm.
The first workshop covers an introduction to the Liturgy of the Church, with a specific focus on the Liturgy of the Word, as well as the Reading Skills necessary for parish readers. The second workshop offers a general introduction to the Bible as well as a set of keys to understand any biblical texts. Both workshops are led by a diocesan team: Deacon Martin McElroy from Winchester, Claire Tickell from Southampton and Sr Hyacinthe from the Lymington Dominican Sisters.
Both workshops involve small group discussions. To complete the training, awarded with a diocesan Recognitio, a reading practice with a diocesan listener is required. The details for arranging for the 1:1 15 minutes practice are given during the workshops.
Find out more and register here for the workshops:
The Dominican Sisters are launching a new initiative this Advent, to mark the Year of the Eucharist, called Wednesday Communion.
This weekly online meeting with the sisters will consist of:
A time of shared Lectio Divina on the first reading of the coming Sunday (especially helpful for readers!),
A time of fellowship, getting to know each other and share our stories,
A time of intercession for each other, for the Church and for the world,
A time of Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament through the sisters' livestream in their chapel.
We hope that you'll take this opportunity to join us whenever you can on Wednesday. We hope this will be a precious time of fellowship and prayer, in communion with Jesus present in his Word and Sacrament.
Find out more and register here.
CELEBRATE DOES PARENTING FOR FAITH
CELEBRATE are running the fantastic Parenting for Faith course online on Tuesday evenings from 20:00 - 21:15, starting on 2nd November, 2021. The goal of the course is to help parents discover that they are perfectly positioned to show their children the reality of a life with God and to empower them to have their own vibrant two-way relationship with Him.
The course is eight weeks with an extra optional live session, and will be run in November and January of next year, as we are going to break in the middle of the course for Advent and Christmas. It will be taking place on Zoom.
Block one: 2nd, 9th, 16th, & 23rd November 2021
Optional evening: 30th November 2021 with Rachel Turner, Parenting for Faith Pioneer
Block two: 11th, 18th, 25th January & 1st February 2022
Everyone is welcome - parents, grandparents, godparents, aunties, uncles, friends, catechists - all who have a heart for the next generation. You can get more information and sign up here.
NEW TO THE PARISH?
We warmly welcome all new parishioners who have joined our parish in the last year. Please do make yourselves known if you have not already done so, and also let us know if you would like to contribute to parish life in any way. You can use the form on our website here to register. Forms and other information are also available in the porch at our church.
Let us all try to waste less water by:
turning off the tap when brushing our teeth (we can save about 6 -8 litres each time);
taking a shower instead of a bath (of course it depends on how long our shower lasts, but using an aerated showerhead cuts down the amount of water used);
fixing a dripping tap (could just need a new washer).