If a survey were to be conducted among churchgoers in which they were asked for a definition of religion, it is unlikely that many would come up with the simple answer provided by the apostle James in this weekend’s second reading. Coming to the help of orphans and widows would be for many a kind of agreeable by-product of religion whereas James places it right at the centre of who we are and what we do.
This is surely a message for today when so many people go to such great lengths in their search for wisdom and the knowledge of God. A religion that can be observed at a purely external level has a certain appeal. It is easy to feel we are making progress and that we are better than those who do not measure up. We imagine that by our own efforts we can come close to God. However, Jesus wants no part in such a sham. He is concerned with the heart and a faith that does justice.
1st Deuteronomy 4:1-2, 6-8. Listening to God’s word brings life and wisdom
Psalm 15. Response: Those who act justly will live in the presence of the Lord
2nd James 1:17-18, 21-22, 27. As doers of the Word we must put it into practice too
Gospel Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23. The Scribes’ and Pharisees’ worship of God was mere lip-service
Sacraments of First Reconciliation & First Holy Communion - final date for application to be in is Friday 10th September 2021. Introduction to the programme will be Saturday 11th September at 5pm, followed by attending the 6.15pm Mass. Children need to be with parent(s)/Guardian.
Sacrament of Confirmation - final date for application to be in is Friday 17th September 2021. Introduction to the programme will be Saturday 18th September at 5pm, followed by attending the 6.15pm Mass. Candidate needs to be with parent(s)/Guardian.
FACE COVERINGS It is strongly encouraged, from a moral and respectful point of view, to continue wearing face masks during Public Worship. This indeed, is not a legal requirement, and several our parishioners have exemption from wearing masks.
Further, if you wish to continue adhering to social distancing in the Church, then please arrive at least 10 minutes before Mass, and a section in the church will be reserved for you.
MASS VIA YOUTUBE Mass will be streamed live on Wednesday (9.30am) and Sunday (11.15am). Note: YouTube only!
LYFORD GRANGE MASS Sunday 26th September. Fr Liam is the main celebrant for the St Edmund Campion Pilgrimage Mass to be held at Lyford Grange, near Wantage on Sunday 26th September 2021 at 4pm. The coach will leave at 11:15am calling at Abingdon for carvery lunch. Further details are on poster in church porch. Please enter your names and contact details on the sheet (church porch) for those who intend travelling by coach. Further details are available from John L on 01628 636668 or 07931 292934.
Lyford is the place where St. Edmund Campion was arrested and taken to the Tower of London, where eventually on December 1st, 1581, he was hung drawn and quartered at Tyburn (Marble Arch).
CHILDREN’S SUNDAY LITURGY will recommence on 12th September during the 9:30am Mass. Unfortunately, due to a lack catechists, it is just the school-going children from the age of 4 to 7 years, that will attend for the time being.
At the same time, we are asking you to consider the possibility of being a catechist/helper during ‘Sunday School’. If we wish to have more children’s age groups involved, then the team will need at least eight new volunteers. For more information, please contact Tricia Opalko on firstname.lastname@example.org.
MOTHERS' PRAYER GROUP The first Mothers’ Prayer Group began two years ago in St. Edmund Campion Church. Delightfully on Friday 3rd September 2021 it will recommence, and you are warmly invited to attend, as and when you can. The meetings are held in the Church every Friday, from 8:50am to 9:45am and, if you can stay on for Mass at 10am with tea/coffee and chat afterwards!
Meetings begin with a relaxed welcome and greeting. Prayer follows, primarily for our children, God-children, children of the parish and children of Maidenhead. The peace it brings is tangible.
“SHIELDING” for those in our community who continue to join at the Eucharist via YouTube on a regular basis, but for one reason or another, cannot physically come to the Church, and would like to receive the Sacrament of Holy Communion, please let Fr. Liam or the parish office know. Fr. Liam will bring the Holy Sacrament to you whilst adhering to social distancing and a safe environment.
Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults is a programme for adults who wish to be baptised and/or received into the Church. It is also for adult parishioners who wish to complete their process of initiation and be prepared to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation.
The Baptism and Reception into the Church normally take place at the Easter Vigil Mass (Saturday Evening before Easter). Group class, input and journeying together will begin in the Autumn.
If you, or you know someone who is searching, and wishes to come home to full communion with the Church, then please contact Fr. Liam for further information.
Sacraments of Initiation
For the Sacrament of First Reconciliation, First Holy Communion and Confirmation, application forms will be available from the beginning of August. They will be on the website and printed and available from the Church porch. Please complete and send back an electronic or hard copy to the Parish Office (not the school) before 10th September 2021 (17th September for Confirmation).
This year we are accepting children who are 8 years of age and above by October 1st, for First Holy Communion, and teenagers over 13 and under 18 years of age, for Confirmation.
For the Introduction for Reconciliation and First Holy Communion, a Prayer Service will take place at St. Edmund Campion Church at 5pm, on Saturday 11th September, followed by the Vigil Mass at 6:15pm.
For the Confirmation Programme, a Prayer Service and Introduction will take place on Saturday 18th September at 5pm, followed by the Vigil Mass at 6.15pm.
For both programmes it is a ‘3-Step-Programme’.
Step 1: This step is called: ‘Come and See’. (John 1: 39-41). An invitation from Jesus. 14 weekends between mid-September to end of December. The candidate is required to attend at least 10 weekend Masses with family members.
Step 2: This step is called: ‘Sat at the feet of Jesus’. (Luke 10:38-42). 10 input/teaching classes between January and April. This will be done on alternative Saturdays. Each input will comprise of 90 minutes. Candidates are expected to attend Mass every weekend during this period.
Step 3: This step is called: Jesus sent them out’ (Luke 10:1). During May, the candidates will do a missionary assignment in the Church and Community. Candidates are expected to attend Mass every weekend during this period.
It is greatly appreciated that many of you transferred your ‘church offering’ from cash to direct debit and standing order over the last number of months. Our parish has had its financial income greatly reduced and this has impacted on our church activities, donations to various charities and parish maintenance. The Offertory Collection Basket is at the church entrance and exit each day if you wish to make a very welcome donation. There is also a contactless “tap to donate” machine, where you can contribute to the weekly collection.
NB: It would be helpful for the parish if the vast majority of our Weekly Collection could be done via Direct Debit / Standing Order. I ask that you reflect and, if possible, switch your donation from cash to bank. This would be invaluable and would give the Parish Council and Finance Committee more solidity in planning for the months/years ahead. At present, we are a vastly cash—giving parish, and with the dramatic decrease, it is very hard to plan and donate to those most vulnerable and in need, as well as care for our parish community..
Account name: St. Edmund Campion Maidenhead
Sort code: 30-93-04
Account number: 00882551
FOODSHARE We are a collection point for Foodshare. Our collection area is just inside the porch doors, but if you leave food outside, out of hours (in a bag or other covering) the building is regularly checked. Foodshare are currently really in need of tinned vegetables and tinned meat, amongst all the regular donations.
As the summer holidays approach, snacks suitable for children would be welcomed, we all know how much food children can get through in a day in the holidays!
TODDLERS GROUP will be back in September. Please keep an eye on the WhatsApp group for details.
APPOINTMENTS If you wish to speak to Fr Liam in confidence on any matter, please contact him by phone or e-mail
HOUSEBOUND If you know of anyone who is sick and/or housebound, please let Sarah (Parish Office) or Fr Liam know.
ADMISSION INTO ST EDMUND CAMPION SCHOOL AND NURSERY is based on Mass attendance for some categories. In our parish, we have an attendance card available from the table in the church lobby. Every time you come to Sunday Mass please get your card stamped. For information on the current Admissions Policy see the school's website, www.st-edmund.org.uk.