St Werburgh's Roman Catholic Parish, Chester

Parish Newsletter




Ecclesiasticus 24, 1-12; Psalm 147; Ephesians 1, 3-18; John 1, 1-18

Saturday 6.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Donal and Mary O’Shea
9.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Dot and Pat Williams (Anniversaries); Malcolm Crowther (1st Anniversary)
10.45 am: St Werburgh’s: Austin Tighe (1st Anniversary)
6.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Barbara Hetherington (née Deponeo), L.D. Brisbane, Australia

Monday 3rd January: Monday of the Christmas Season: I John 2,29 - 3,6; Psalm 97; John 1, 29-34
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: New Year’s Intentions (Bro)

Tuesday 4th January: Tuesday of the Christmas Season: I John 3, 7-10; Psalm 97; John 1, 35-42
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Calogera Safina (Month’s Mind)

Wednesday 5th January: Wed of the Christmas Season: I John 3, 11-21; Psalm 99; John 1, 43-51
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: John, William and Kitty Casey

Thursday 6th January: HOLYDAY OF THE EPIPHANY
Isaiah 60, 1-6; Psalm 71; Ephesians 3, 2-6; Matthew 2, 1-12
7.30 am: St Werburgh’s: Cath Haslam
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Celia Murphy
12.00 noon: St Laurence, Stoak: Memorial Service for Luke Ellis (1st Anniversary)
7.30 pm: St Werburgh’s: Intentions of Jen

Friday 7th January: Friday after Epiphany: I John 3,22 - 4,6; Psalm 2; Matthew 4, 12-25
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Helen Cadden (Anniversary)
1.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Funeral Service for Joyce Garner, late of Florence Grogan House

Saturday 8th January: Saturday after Epiphany: I John 4, 7-10; Psalm 71; Mark 6, 34-44
10.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Patrick Regan
6.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Sarah Campbell – Thanksgiving for Safe Delivery of Baby Boy

Isaiah 40, 1-11; Psalm 103; Titus 2,11 - 3,7; Luke 3, 15-22
Saturday 6.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Sarah Campbell - Thanksgiving for Safe Delivery of Baby Boy
9.00 am: St Werburgh’s: Alex Barnes
10.45 am: St Werburgh’s: Nancy Mansfield (1st Anniversary)
6.00 pm: St Werburgh’s: Kevin Rooney (L.D., Enniskillen)

Prayer intentions

Your prayers are asked for the following who are sick: Duncan Steele, Brian Boardman Jnr, John McMahon, James Convey, Bill Hackett, Laura Chadwick, Elisabeth, Stuart Clark, Keith Hayes, Ruth O’Kane, Garth Stocking and Kevin Maguire and for all the sick of the Parish; and for those who have died recently, especially Joyce Garner; and for those whose anniversaries occur about this time: George Griffiths, Mary Le Gallez, Bridget Cullen, Arthur Barlow, Winifred Collins, Amelia Sanders, Richard Baxter, Williams Banks, Joan Roberts, Keith Ferguson, Patricia Pickering, Barbara McNay. Neil Roddy John Conroy, William Lucas, Jane Molloy, Norah Douglas, Patrick Kavanagh, Thomas Lynch, Pat Williams, William Wright, Dorothy Costello, Gordon Ierston, Anthony Cooney, Maria Przeworski, Bernard Bamford, Kathleen Kennedy, Sarah Murphy, Joseph Lohinski, Helen Moreton, Basil Patterson, Kathleen O’Connell, Bette Cummings, Lilian Catherall, Grace Moore, Celine Little, Catherine Pate, Maurice Shanley, Miep Clarke, Colin Churchill, Margaret Harris, Graham Jones, Kenneth Jervis, Gioacchino Izzo, Jim Colley and Malcolm Crowther. May They All Rest in Peace.

Parish events

Christmas Bookings: How Many Turned Up?

We’ve had a chance now to do a little more work on our Christmas numbers, how the booking system operated, and what the final numbers were.

Friday 24th, Christmas Eve

  • 4.30 pm: Children’s Christmas Eve Mass I: 148 booked, 136 turned up
  • 6.00 pm: Children’s Christmas Eve Mass II: 150 booked, 112 turned up
  • 8.30 pm: Vigil Mass of Christmas: 160 booked, 146 turned up
  • 11.30 pm: Carols and Midnight Mass: 150 booked, 144 turned up

Saturday 25th, Christmas Day

  • 9.00 am: Dawn Mass of Christmas: 130 booked, 126 turned up
  • 10.00 am: Day Mass of Christmas: 129 booked, 128 turned up
  • 11.00 am: Day Mass of Christmas: 158 booked, 148 turned up

Total: 940 turned up

Obviously, we’re interested in the shortfall between bookings and attendances at every single Mass, to see if there are any lessons that can be learnt. We do understand that the national picture looked a little more menacing in the week before Christmas, with the surge in Omicron numbers. Many of you cancelled in time through the online Booking System. That was great because it immediately released your tickets back into the pool for others to book. Others rang us in time for us to go online and release your tickets for others. But some either let us know too late or didn’t let us know at all - and those were tickets others could have used. ‘Nuff said?

Enormous Thanks to our Stewards!

As ever, our stewards played a blinder, here for more than one Mass, checking people in, on hand to deal with enquiries, and then seeing everyone safely up to Holy Communion and back again. If there were medals to be given... You are all stars.

CAFOD Afghanistan Emergency Appeal

CAFOD is combining efforts with the DEC to launch the Afghanistan Crisis Appeal. In Afghanistan, 8 million people are on the brink of famine because of drought, collapsing economy, food shortages, conflict, and COVID. CAFOD is supporting sister Caritas agencies to reach communities most in need with food, clean water, and fuel. Let’s do all that we can to save lives. You can donate on the CAFOD website: and please pray for the people of Afghanistan.

Bishops’ Conference Christmas Advice

  • 1. Not feeling well? STOP AT HOME!
  • 2. Masks now Mandatory in Church
  • 3. Use the Hand Sanitiser
  • 4. Make sure buildings are well ventilated
  • 5. Get jabbed!

Emergency Lights Installation in Church

Almost finished - just one to fix, which they’ll do after the holidays. Have you all seen the new lights outside the front door? Quite a difference!

Day by Day and Sacred Heart Messengers

New editions of our popular little monthly magazines now also on the Newsstand: January’s Day by Day (£1) and Sacred Heart Messenger for January (£1.50).

Forthcoming Sundays and Feast Days

Sunday 2nd January: Second Sunday after Christmas
Thursday 6th January: Holyday of the Epiphany
Sunday 9th January: The Baptism of the Lord (The official end of Christmastide)

New Year: I Put My Hand

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year,
‘Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.’
And he replied,
‘Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.’
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night.
And he led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

(Minnie Louise Haskins, 1908)

Crib Collection - Diocesan Children’s Society

To support the work of the old Children’s Society now part of Caritas. Thanks, everyone!

Wheelchair Access

Big problem at one of the Christmas Masses, a car carelessly parked diagonally right across the way into church, completely blocking any wheelchairs or prams. And we did have two pre-booked wheelchairs turn up, who then had to be manually lifted up the stairs into church. PLEASE think before you park, folks, and if you see any inconsiderate parking, let us know before Mass starts so that an announcement can be made. Thanks, everyone!

The Repository: Closed till End of January

Reopens Sunday 30th January with a PRE-LOVED SALE!

Christmas Volunteer Rota

Many thanks to all our Readers, Counters, Collectors, the usual army of willing wolunteers (get that alliteration!) without which this Parish simply wouldn’t function. Wonderful Werbie Willing Wolunteers? [You can go too far at times, I hope you realise, you old bore. Ed]

Ideal Christmas Gift: Tanglewood Acoustic Guitar

The winning bid was £300, so enormous thanks to all!

New Diocesan 2022 Year Books and Ordos

Now arrived. On the Newsstand at the back of church, £5 each.

Photo of the Week: North Island of New Zealand

Christ Church, Bay of Islands, the oldest church in NZ (1835). Just look at the history on those gravestones! Thanks, Mrs Davies! (Time for another trip?)

Readers’ Rota: Wolunteers to Date

Forgive me if I’ve missed you off: let me know asap, so that I can draw up the Rota for 2022.
Sat 6.00 pm: Vincent Hatton, Diane Miller, Anne Rushton, Lego Moody.
Sunday 9.00 am: Anne Massey, Jean Aslet, Bernice Meredith, Denise Jones, David Kluth, Helen Pile, Marie Broadhurst, Judith Done, Tony Baxter.
Sunday 10.45: Geoff Taylor, Lal Cooke, Marian McCarthy, Gillian Roe, Barl Atkins, Paul Doherty.
Sunday 6.00 pm: Simon and Consilia Black, Steve Perry, Kathryn Gornall.
Anyone else like to put their name down?