Sacred Heart Oxford

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Welcome to the Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church Oxford

Sacred Heart Church in Blackbird Leys, Oxford is part of the Archdiocese of Birmingham. We hope that you will find our website useful and enjoy searching through the various aspects of life in the parish. Here you will be able to check our weekly newsletter, news and forthcoming parish events, read about how to go about with Sacramental preparation and find out Mass times and other services.

Whatever your reason for visiting us we pray that God will bless your search and grant you many blessings

The Easter Season

The Easter Season began on Easter Sunday, and ends after Evening Prayer on Pentecost Sunday.  These fifty days are a very special time and, as St. Athanasius wrote, they “are celebrated in joyful exultation as one feast day, or better as one great Sunday.”  The joyful sound of “Alleluia!” is heard many times throughout this season.

Taking the next step with care. This is a very exciting time.  One of the Psalms speaks about the Lord as a warrior awaking as if from sleep and stretching, ready for action.  It feels that the Church is also once again starting to awaken and stretch.  Things are starting to happen and it is lovely to see parishioners coming back to Mass.  It is important that we all continue to observe restrictions in church. These restrictions include: sanitising your hands as you enter and leave the church, leaving contact details as you enter, wearing a face covering whilst in the building, and maintaining physical distance from other people. It is also very important that we co-operate with the stewards in being seated safely.  Thank you.

First Holy Communions. Some of our children are in the process of preparing to receive their First Holy Communion at the end of this month. Please pray for them and their families, and for their teachers.  Parents, if your child is still waiting to make his or her first Holy Communion and is not at either St. John Fisher School or Our Lady’s School, please have a chat with me.

May Prayer Initiative. In response to the Holy Father’s heartfelt wish, the month of May is being dedicated to a “marathon” of prayer, to ask for the end of the Coronavirus pandemic. Pope Francis wishes to involve Shrines around the world in this initiative, so that they may become vehicles of the prayer of the entire Church. With the people at the shrines we are asked to pray the Holy Rosary each day of the month for a daily prayer intention. A list of each day’s shrine and prayer intention is printed in the booklets that were made available last week. The Vatican website will broadcast the prayer said each day in each of the thirty Shrines at 5:00 pm, BST.

CAFOD “Reclaim our Common Home”.  This year, the UK will host the largest gathering of world leaders ever to take place on British soil: the ‘COP26’ climate talks. With the eyes of the world on the UK, we must urge the Prime Minister to make sure communities hardest hit by the climate emergency are listened to at COP26. You can sign Cafod’s petition here https://action.cafod.org.uk/page/73304/petition/1 If you have any questions, or would like to do more, please contact: rachel.breward@gmail.com

Aileen Young.  Please pray for the repose of the soul of Aileen Young, who died recently.  Her funeral will be here on Friday afternoon.  Because of the pandemic only family may attend the Mass, but we can all join in prayer.

Bishop William Kenney.  I expect that you know that in our Archdiocese, Archbishop Bernard is assisted by three auxiliary bishops, each looking after a different area of the archdiocese.  In our area Bishop William Kenney has been our Bishop for many years.  Last Friday he sent this message: I wanted to say that today 7th May the Holy Father has accepted my resignation as Auxiliary Bishop of Birmingham, as I have reached my 75th birthday.  I become, therefore, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus.  I will, however, be continuing with my normal duties for the time being; probably until a successor is appointed.  On behalf of Sacred Heart Parish I shall give him a small gift with our congratulations and thanks on the occasion.

Fundraiser for Pax Christi.  In the week 15th-21st May, Pax Christi, the Catholic Peace organisation, will be trying to raise funds to make up for lost income due to Covid-19. One person is having a dance-a-thon, another is delivering a peace message to foreign embassies in London, a third is cycling 50 miles visiting peace sites, a fourth is going on a walk from Victoria to the Peace Pagoda in Battersea Park, another will be cycling for 75 miles, to celebrate Pax Christi’s 75th anniversary. Please go to their website www.paxchristi.org.uk/register-you-interest/  for details on how you can sponsor them.

Commemorative Candles. The large candles in front of the Tabernacle, the Sacred Heart statue and Our Lady’s statue burn night and day. These lights indicate the presence of Jesus in the Tabernacle and also give honour to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Our Lady. They also show our desire to remain present to the Lord in prayer, even though we have to leave church and go about our daily business. If you would like one of the week-long candles to burn for a particular intention or in memory of a loved one, please add the intention to the list at the back of church and enclose your intention in an envelope, with an offering of £5, and give it to me after Mass or leave it in the collection basket.

Holy Water. If you would like holy water for use at home, please bring your own bottle, ready filled with water, which I shall be happy to bless.

May God bless you and all those you love.

Fr. Harry

Updated on Sunday, 09 May 2021; For more details please see the Newsletter for the week.