St Werburgh's Roman Catholic Parish, Chester

Parish Newsletter




Leviticus 13, 1-46; Psalm 31; I Corinthians 10,31 - 11,1; Mark 1, 40-45

9.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Alex Barnes
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Mary Barrett (100th Birthday Remembrance)
11.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Intentions of the Flack Family
12.00 noon: St Werburgh’s: Mariana Belei (20th Anniversary)

Monday 15th February: Ferial: Genesis 4, 1-25; Psalm 49; Mark 8, 11-13
10.00 am: Requiem Mass for Connie Santos, late of Shotton

Tuesday 16th February: Ferial: Genesis 6,5 - 7,5; Psalm 28; Mark 8, 14-21
10.00 am: Overleigh: Burial of Ashes for the late Annie Lancaster
Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Maria Prez (3rd Anniversary)

Wednesday 17th February: ASH WEDNESDAY
Joel 2, 12-18; Psalm 50; II Corinthians 5,20 – 6,2; Matthew 6, 1-18
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Pauline Harper (91st Birthday Remembrance)
11.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Rose’s Mother

Thursday 18th February: Thursday after Ash Wednesday: Deut 30, 15-20; Psalm 1; Luke 9, 22-25
10.40 am: Blacon: Funeral Service for Margaret Nixon, late of Foxes Walk, Huntington
1.00 am: Blacon: Graveside Service for Jacqueline Carlen, late of Kingswood
2.40 pm: Blacon: Funeral Service for Miguel Ortega, late of St Alban’s
Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Patricia Twohig (Birthday Remembrance)

Friday 19th February: Friday after Ash Wednesday: Isaiah 58, 1-9; Psalm 50; Matthew 9, 14-15
10.00 am: All Saints, Saughall: Graveside Service for George Mayled, late of Crabwall Hall NH
12.30 pm: St John’s New Ferry: Requiem Mass for Betty Finan, late of Headingley, Leeds

Saturday 20th February: Saturday after Ash Wednesday: Isaiah 58, 9-14; Psalm 85; Luke 5, 27-32
Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: James, Edith and Helen Murphy

Genesis 9, 8-15; Psalm 24; I Peter 3, 18-22; Mark 1, 12-15
9.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Philip McCabe (3rd Anniversary)
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Jean Hewson (Birthday Remembrance)
11.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Paul McCormick (L.D., Italy)
12.00 noon: St Werburgh’s: Anne Moore (1st Anniversary)

Prayer intentions

Your prayers are asked for the following who are sick: James Convey, Pauline and Bill Hackett, Laura Chadwick, Elisabeth, Stuart Clark, Keith Hayes, Sheila Winder, Joe and Ruth O’Kane, Garth Stocking and Kevin Maguire; and for all the sick of the Parish; and for those who have died recently, especially Frank Vitelli, Luke Ellis, Miguel Ortega, Betty Finan, Connie Santos, Margaret Nixon, George Mayled, Paul Power and Jacqueline Carlen; and for those whose anniversaries occur about this time: Josephine Owens, Margaret Connolly, Bernard Flaherty, John Axon, Mary Barr, Kathleen Vickers, Winifred Swaine, Garry Nelson, Mary Lambert, Harry Keyzor, Peter Melia, Eric Muldoon, Dorothy Welch, Fred McClelland, Joe Dunne, Kathleen Ward, Bob Ward, Bernie Clark, Irene Whitehouse and Winifred Morris. May They All Rest in Peace.

Parish events

Covid-19: Progress Report This Week

Numbers at Mass last week were up again at 188, the four previous weeks being 183, 152, 184 and 179. We continue to monitor the situation week by week, under direction from Bishop Mark. Four of the ten Diocesan Parishes temporarily closed (out of 110), either because they are in Covid-19 hot-spots or because the Parish Priest himself has tested positive, are now preparing to re-open, which is more good news. Still a critical need for everyone to take maximum care, both here in Church and in every other part of our lives. Meanwhile, good to hear that so many of you had had your first jabs. Some of you have been kind enough to enquire when I will receive mine: absurdly, I received a letter this week telling me I was next in the queue as a "rising 70". How ridiculous! I’ve sent it straight back and got them to change it to "Rising 60". How very dare they!

Infection Figures for Last Week

Friday night, 12th February, Bishop Mark sent us the latest Infection Figures for the eleven Local Authorities of the Diocese. As you can see, they are all pointing in the same welcome direction:

  • Halton: 220 per 100,000 (378; 522; 897; 1,148)
  • Wirral: 184 (252; 384; 763; 976)
  • Telford and Wrekin: 245 (305; 373; 588; 550)
  • Warrington: 208 (312; 369; 577; 780)
  • Shropshire: 178 (211; 244; 500; 420)
  • Manchester: 215 (291; 339; 488; 492)
  • Cheshire West: 161 (250; 314; 464; 528)
  • Tameside: 187 (238; 309; 418; 407)
  • Stockport: 202 (251; 274; 416; 503)
  • Trafford: 155 (211; 263; 406; 495)
  • Cheshire East: 150 (197; 212; 368; 388)

Still a long way to go, but at least the figures are coming down and not going up?

Ash Wednesday

Delighted to be able to offer two Masses for the start of Lent, at 10.00 and 11.00 am. Huge thanks to the team of Stewards who have wolunteered to be on duty for those two hours, without whom we would not be able to offer anything. Our Covid-19 Taskforce has concluded there is no way we can safely impose Ashes in our church in the traditional way, and have come up with a very imaginative alternative. When you enter church, you will be given something that looks like a Prayer Card, with an Ash Cross on it. FP will have put these crosses on a few days earlier. At the moment of Blessing, please all hold up your cards, and they will be blessed together. The Mass and Holy Communion will proceed as they normally do in these Covid-19 times, and your Ashes Card is yours to take home with you and keep for the whole of Lent, for the whole of the Year ahead if you wish. If you are not able to come to Mass on Wednesday and would like one of these cards, please send us a SAE and we’ll pop one in the post for you with pleasure.

If I can touch you, we are too close!

Magazines, Year Books, Ordos...

Day by Day (£1) magazines and Sacred Heart Messengers (£1.50) in the porch as you leave, plus Diocesan Year Books and Ordos (£5 each). Just take the mags and pop the money in next week!

Arriving for Mass at the Last Minute

I know it’s the mark of a true Catholic to arrive for Mass thirty seconds before the Bell rings, but in these Covid-19 times, that’s one particular habit our Door Stewards would love you to give up for Lent!! They tell me it was particularly bad at the 11.00 am and 12.00 noon Mass. They have to keep you socially distanced, six feet apart, take down your Track and Trace details, make sure you’ve hand-sanitised and then show you to your seat. Can’t be done in thirty seconds, folks! Especially if there are lots of you on that particular kick. PLEASE break the habit of a lifetime and arrive five minutes before Mass starts?

Gift Aid Envelope Users: IMPORTANT

As we are unable to put the 2021/22 Gift Aid envelopes out in church for you to collect, we plan to deliver them to your home. It is therefore essential that we have your correct address. If you have moved in the last few years or are unsure if we hold your current address, please let Denise our Gift Aid Organiser know as soon as possible. Denise can be contacted at: Email:; Phone: 01244 345676. Thank you for your ongoing support for St Werburgh’s during these difficult times which is very much appreciated.

Bishop Mark Writes, Friday 12th February...

In these last days before Lent, there is always a sense of anticipation, perhaps heightened this year by the expectation of parish life beginning to emerge from the severest of lockdown restrictions. At present, we cannot foresee the chronology or the changes to the pastoral landscape in the months ahead. However, we can make use of the Lenten Season to seek that interior renewal which will best prepare us for the challenges and opportunities to come. May Saint Joseph accompany us on this Lenten journey,
+ Mark Bishop of Shrewsbury

Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals?

Baptisms: permitted, but "Rule of Six" - maximum of six people allowed to attend.
Weddings: only in exceptional circumstances such as grave illness, and, again, "Rule of Six".
Funerals: permitted, with a maximum of thirty people attending.

Want to Get on Zoom?

Like many of you, I was a reluctant convert to Zoom, but it’s been an absolute lifesaver, bringing people together in all sorts of ways. I’m grateful to Marco and the SVP for sorting me out and getting Zoom installed. Would any of you like a hand to get it installed? If you have a laptop or tablet (or smartphone), then the microphone and camera are ready-installed. If, like me, you only have a desktop, the kit costs about £25. We can order it for you. Interested? Just let me know, and we can help.

This Week’s Photo of the Week: Saint Peter?

Archive Photo from 1994, the Lord Mayor of Chester, Councillor Margaret Byatt visiting St Werburgh’s. Anyone remember the occasion? And is it just me, or is there the ghost of a halo over the head of our previous Parish Priest?? Saint Peter???