Catholic Church of The Immaculate Conception of Our Lady - Penzance - website - part of the Parish of The Holy Family
We hope you enjoy reading a selection of articles from the March 2001, (Volume 3, Issue 1) issue
of our parish magazine The editors take no responsibility for views expressed by contributors to this publication
The articles do not appear here in any particular order
a dheanfaimid feasta gan adhmad? Ta deirreadha na gcoillte ar lar
have remembered this Irish lament learned while I was at school. The
poet mourns the deforestation of his land. Loss like this becomes
inconsolable. It compares to the loss experienced by fisherfolk when
whole species of fish are at near extinction point. There are no longer
look-outs on the headlands of Cornwall to call out when shoals of
pilchards swam into view. The loss of many other kinds of fish and the
imposition of quotas has meant a loss of livelihood for thousands of
closure of the Cornish mines and all but a few of the nation's coal
mines has also meant that whole communities have seen their livelihoods
now we watch, with horror in our hearts, as the nation's herds are under
threat from Foot and Mouth. The suffering of those farmers who have lost
whole herds can only be guessed at. The rest of the farming community
continues to watch and wait in dread. This is a time for the Churches to
offer prayers and practical support. It is a time for Government to be
generous in compensating all who suffer in this crisis.
is another loss I want to comment on. Many of our parishioners do not
actively take part in our parish life and worship. Perhaps some of these
are members of your family or among the circle of your friends. Their
absence is a real loss to the parish. We miss their presence, their
prayer, their witness and the questions and challenges they may raise
for the rest of us. A recent book by Emily A Vidal, called On Reaching
Out to Inactive Catholics makes a few
suggestions as to what our approach might be. I'll end my Comment
by listing some of them:
Reaching out to inactive Catholics
you for all you already do in our parish. Thank you for the love and the
prayer and the forgiveness you already manifest in your lives. I wish
you a very happy Easter.
bless you all,
you know that there is a Christian Youth Club in Penzance that has been
active among the youth of the town for over 130 years? It is called the
YMCA and is located in Alverton, just past the top of Alexandra Road.
There are a variety of in-house clubs and other groups organised and
hosted by the YMCA. It offers a broad range of clubs catering for all
age groups and provides people with a place to go and somewhere they can
meet and interact.
are sports groups, such as Football (Alverton Athletica is the YMCA
Team), Basketball, Karate and Old Boys (ie: Dads) Three-a-Side Football.
There is even Thai Kick Boxing! The YMCA also hosts health and fitness
groups covering aerobics, badminton and yoga and for younger members, a
Kids Homework Club, The After School Dolphin Club, Girl's Club (8-10
years), Tweenagers Club (8 - 1 2 years) and the Youth Club (13 - 19
years). There are also regular Teen Disco evenings, Dancing Classes,
Snooker, Pool, Darts and a Coffee Shop. A recently opened Cyber 'Y' Cafe
offers access to the Internet and networked PC games alongside
CLAIT (Computer Literacy and Information Technology) Courses. Those who
are 50 plus can enjoy the Luncheon Club with its varied social programme.
Others enjoy 'International Evenings' and 'A Time for Reflection'. Plans
are in hand to introduce Short Mat Bowls.
YMCA is part of a Christian Movement that gives opportunities for local
Christians to fulfil their desire to provide service to others.
Volunteers who wish to assist in any of the programmes will be welcomed.
The organisation endeavours to build a more integrated and tolerant
community of individuals who support each other and look to the future.
It deserves your support and encouragement. Bishop Christopher Budd is a
Vice President of YMCA Cornwall Ltd., and one of our parishioners is the
current Chairman of the Board of Directors. Encourage
your youngsters to give it a try. Try it yourself!
(There will be more about the work of the YMCA in future issues)
was a very good response to the last Amnesty stall at church and our
local group is very appreciative of the support we are able to give to
are hoping to get James Mawdsley to come and give a talk for us in
Penzance. A probable date is early October, and this event will be well
publicised when we are able to finalise the arrangements. This
remarkable young Catholic made headline news in October last year when
he was released from a Burmese prison after suffering 416 days of
solitary confinement and beatings for distributing pro-democracy
leaflets in Burma. He has vowed to continue his campaign against
military dictatorship in Burma from England now, but does not rule out a
return to Burma.
there have been some recent releases of prisoners in Burma, I'm afraid
we have had no news about our own Adopted Burmese Prisoner of
Conscience: Thet Win Aung.
This spring will see the launch of a new national Burma campaign when there will be many more voices raised on behalf of the suffering Burmese people and their committed leader: Aung San Suu Kyi.
Stamp out Torture campaign will continue through the year and cards for
sending to the Prime Minister(s)? are still available.
you can help in any way, or would like more information, please
it just the older members of our society who recall reading with horror
of the eugenics experiments perpetrated in some Concentration Camps
during World War II? The following article first appeared in the weekly
newsletter of The Church of the Holy Ghost, Battersea, on Christmas Eve.
It is perhaps food for thought about what our society has learnt
regarding the sanctity of human life over the past 60 years. What do you
Furry Animals - 1,
Human Life - 0
before Christmas, Members of Parliament, led by the Prime Minister;
voted in favour of allowing research on cloned human embryos. In the
vote 366 members voted to permit the production of human beings by
cloning in order to let them develop for a while before
disembowelling them for the purposes of 'scientific research', Only 174
MPs voted against the proposal.
Prime minister previously went on record saying those against this
measure were 'anti-science'. It is tragic that so many MPs blindly
followed this line of thinking despite the fact that many scientists
oppose this abhorrent measure. We seem to have learnt little since the
days in which MPs accepted a former Prime Minister's claims in support
of embryo research ten years ago.
decision has already been condemned by some of our Eumpean partners.
German ministers, Th particular, remembering the honors of eugenics,
have been quick to object to the principle that human life may be
created for the sole purpose of allowing scientists to have sport with
vote to allow human embryonic cloning becomes even more absurd when we
consider a second vote taken during the same week: the proposed bill on
hunting with dogs. The arguments given in favour of a ban on
foxhunting becom6' somehow obscene in the mouths of those who, only a
few hours previously, had voted to farm human beings in order to
experiment on them and destroy them.
again it needs to be restated that the laws and customs of any
particular society do not create moral norms. In other words, things are
not right and wrong because a padiament or a majority say they are right
or wrong. No amount of legislating can make an evil act into a good one.
If we don't have that principle very clear in our minds we will
ourselves be tempted to take our lead from shallow propaganda and accept
does not depend on parliamentary whims. It requires moral absolutes, of
which the most fundamental is that human life is an absolute value: to
be respected for what it is, not for what it can produce; not for the
purity of its race, nor for any other consideration. To treat innocent
human life in any other way is to destroy the foundation for human
rights, reducing them to the status of political concessions. (End)
Here's a quote from a Traidcraft 'Snack Bar':
revolutionary! You're part of a revolution You might think you're just
buying a great tasting snack bar; but you're changing the way the world
works. Fair trade gives 'third world' farmers at the end of the supply
chain a fair price for their products and new opportunities for their
community By buying this product you’re saying "Yes"! to
a fair deal for some of the world's poorest workers.
FREE OFFER - Do you pay Income tax? - Do you attend Mass regularly? - Would you like to add another 28% to your donation in the collection plate at no cost to you?
easy - all you have to do is give your National Insurance Number and
sign a Gift Aid Declaration Form. The rules
have been simplified so that the Church can reclaim 28% from whatever
amount you give. If, for instance, you choose to give £1 one
week and then are able to give £10 the next, that is quite acceptable,
or if your circumstances were to change and you have to stop
contributing altogether, then you just 'stop'. Apart from the initial
form - no further paperwork whatsoever is sent to you.
can give money weekly by using a yellow personalised' numbered envelope,
or a standing order can be arranged through your Bank Account
whole process is highly confidential and only numbers are used locally.
The amounts in the yellow numbered envelopes are individually recorded
each week. At each financial year end the totals are sent oft to the
Plymouth Diocesan Finance Office who can reclaim the 28% (that's nearly
30p for every £1) from each National Insurance number and then send us
the extra money!
"one off' donation can be made by Gift Aid too.
the present time just over 40 people in our Parish are helping in this
will YOU consider this opportunity to give our Parish a subsidy?
coloured Gift Aid Forms are available at the back of the Church. I will
be very happy to advise anyone who is interested.
Wilson (Covenant Organiser)
probably agree that Education is a lifetime experience. knowledge that
we did not gain at school or college is gained through experience.
Experience leads to better understanding. Accumulate enough knowledge
and experience and some might call it wisdom.
applies to our own education, and how we accumulate knowledge and
experience through our careers, professions or our lives in general,
also applies to Religious Education. As we continued to grow, to learn
more about ourselves, about life and about the God who made us, we
probably developed a deeper understanding of faith and maybe a better
understanding of the real, more personal, meaning behind the texts of
the prayers we were taught all those years ago.
least that was the argument put to a number of parishioners at a recent
presentation in the Parish Hall on Adult Religious Education by David
Wells of the Diocesan Religious Education
presentation lasted just over one hour, and many of those who attended
left the hall feeling challenged to look at their faith and how it had
been impacted by their life experiences. How had life experiences
affected an understanding of the Catechism which many learnt by rote as
very thought-provoking evening. We may all say "I believe
but do we all mean exactly the same thing?
has been a disappointing response to our plea in the November 2000 issue
for suggestions regarding the future of the Old School. We want you
to voice your opinion! Would you like to see it as a Parish Community
Centre?, somewhere where social and fund-raising events could be held,
or are you quite happy to see it fall down? Or perhaps for some other
Organisation to take it over? - because that's what could easily happen
if we take no interest. It is not difficult to find fault after
something has been done. We want you to be aware of what is
happening and for you to realise that any kind of democratic
decision means that we all have to take part -so come on
parishioners, let's hear what you think.
cost of any kind of refurbishment to the old school is a major concern,
but not an impossibility, although what we have learned is that
it is just about impossible to get any kind of funding for 'religious'
purposes! We would therefore have to look into schemes where funding is not
so impossible, the sort of things that involve the local community.
An idea was put forward to draw up an Agreement with Penzance Silver
Band but they are now looking for alternative accommodation.
old school would make an ideal venue for our present Mothers and
Toddlers group, and perhaps an After School Club for children whose
parents work full time. Another suggestion is that it could be used as a
centre for Youth Activities for the local area and the possibility of
extending the use of the building to the local Lescudjack Sure Start
Project, who are eligible for funding, so that we would be working
together to share the facilities for the benefit of all.
another suggestion has been to demolish the school and tarmac the
entire playground. The estimate for this work is in the region of
£20,000. What are your views on this?
from the obvious need to replace the roof of the old school, it seems a
good idea that the refurbishment should basically consist of knocking
the two main classroom areas into one large area to provide more space
for any proposed activities. The third (smallest) classroom area might
be established as a 'quiet area' for contemplation when the Centre is
open and during periods when the Church is locked. This room could also
be used for meetings or Parishioners' Coffee Mornings / Get-together
sessions etc. The kitchen needs refurbishing and a 'Bar' area could be
installed plus indoor toilets should be built. We can ensure that any
building changes will incorporate an easy access for disabled and
will all this cost? "Ballpark" figures will have to be
obtained before that question can be answered and a Business Plan will
have to be developed. We also need to do a lot of research into where I
how grants can be obtained, and plenty of actual fund-raising,
although next on the list for fund-raising is to 're-establish' a modem
central-heating system in the Church. So this question of what will
happen to the old school is 'ongoing' but we do need to set ourselves
some goals now so that we can work together in the future for
what we are trying to achieve as a parish.
Clare Wilson and Patrick French
sheep have gone the sheep have gone
the meadow flowers had watched the young lambs play
Soak sultanas overnight in the cold tea.
Heat oven to 180 deg C, 350 deg F, or Gas Mark 4 and grease a 21b
Place flour, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl; stir in sultanas and
egg; beat smooth. If the mixture is a little dry at this stage just add a
few tablespoons of milk.
Spoon mixture into a 'loaf' tin and smooth over.
Bake for about 1 hour.
Leave to cool in the tin for about 10 to 15 minutes before turning
again to Patrick French for the above - come on ladies! please help us out
and send in one of your favourite recipes.
man died and went to Heaven. There were thousands of other people there.
They were all naked and all looked as they did at the age of 21. He looked
around to see if there was anyone he recognised. He saw a couple and he knew
immediately that they were Adam and Eve. How did he know?
"Dear children, I invite you for your individual conversion. The time is for you! Without you God's plan cannot be realised. Dear children grow day by day closer to God through prayer."
Medugorje, a village in Bosnia-Herzegovina, is where the apparitions of The Blessed Virgin Mary, began on Wednesday 24th June,1981. Her message to the world is that God exists, for us to be at peace, and to reconcile our differences. Since then Our Lady has been appearing every day. She tells us that God has sent her and these years she is spending with us are a time of Grace granted by God. "I have come to tell the world that God exists. He is the fullness of life, and to enjoy this fullness and peace, you must return to God". The visions were given to six young people who subsequently passed all tests and very determined attempts to discredit them.
Since the apparitions began, continuing throughout the darkness of the war years, millions of people of all faiths, from all over the world, have been inspired by the messages given to the visionaries. About twenty-two million pilgrims have left spiritually strengthened and renewed. Countless unbelievers and physically or mentally afflicted, have been converted and healed.
The apparitions do not yet have "official" Church approval because the investigative commission can only conclude its lengthy process after the visions have ceased, as with other apparition sites which have been found "worthy of belief". Medjugorje has however been given the unofficial approval of Pope John Paul II. He has always given his blessings to those bishops and priests who have asked him about visiting the shrine, and he asks them to pray for him there. Unfortunately some use this lack of Church approval as a means of avoiding or denigrating what is happening. Our Lady says, "You are invited" so please explore the facts with an open mind and heart and decide whether you will choose to believe in this messenger from God. Parishioners who have been to Medjugorje, some more than once, will be willing to help. Better still, join us on the Plymouth Diocesan Pilgrimage to Medjugorje between May 9th to16th May. (details below)
On the 25th of each month, Our Lady appears to the visionary Marija to give us her message to the world and this is the official English translation for the February 2001 message. "Dear children! This is a time of grace. That is why pray, pray, pray until you comprehend God's love for each of you. Thank you for having responded to my call." (A full commentary is available)
Our Lady has spoken to the visionaries about some future events, ten of which are to be announced three days before they happen. The visionaries already know the dates, and Medugorje Centres around the world are ready to spread the news of the announcements when they are given. One of the purposes of these announcements, Mary says, is to verify the authenticity of the Medugorje apparitions, and to encourage more people to convert, i.e. to turn back to God. Gospa (the Croatian title for the Mother of Jesus) has promised to leave a permanent sign on the site of the apparitions. This sign will remain until the end of the world. We will be able to see the sign, but not touch it. "My Children", said Gospa, "Do not wait for the sign before you convert or it will be too late".
Fr. Ivan Landeka gave this commentary entitled "The significance of Our Lady for Christians" for the Medjugorje information centre:-
"We enter into the twentieth year of the phenomenon and the events of Medjugorje. After twenty years, we still cannot affirm that all that happened is completely clear. The nature of such a phenomenon, as it was the case in the past, will occupy the attention of theologians and specialists for a long time. One thing is more or less certain: Our Lady has led those who come to Medjugorje on the path of faith in Jesus Christ. People sensed this and began the journey. Everything else is in the shadow of this fact.
Why is the role of Our Lady so important in all these events? Karl Rahner, a German theologian, said, ‘Mary represents what a Christian is’ This is what is most significant for Mary in the history of the Church. In Medjugorje and in similar events, Our Lady presented Herself as what a Christian truly is. In this role, She calls to conversion, to prayer, to fasting and to peace."
There is only space available here for a brief description of these events but information is readily available for anyone wishing to know more. Our parish web-site also contains much more detail and links to comphrensive web-sites.
Adrian Mills from Helston Parish has painted a beautiful interpretation of the description of Our Lady given by the visionary, Ivan, who has approved it. So far, over 41,000 cards have been distributed world-wide. Fr. Slavko Barbaric asked that the 25th April 1999 message be included on it:
"Dear Children! Also today I call you to prayer: Little Children, be joyful carriers of peace and love in this peaceless world. By fasting and prayer; witness that you are mine and that you live my messages. Pray and seek! I am praying and interceding for you before God that you convert; that your life and behaviour always be Christian. Thank you for having responded to my call."
The card is available free from myself and other parishioners. I have left some in the church for collection.
The Plymouth Diocesan pilgrimage to Medjugorje, 9th-l6th MAY 2001
Who is a pilgrim? Anyone. Young, old, rich, poor, sick or healthy is a Pilgrim. The majority of Pilgrims believe in God, while some are searching for God, others pray for physical, emotional or spiritual healing, and some simply give thanks to God. Many pilgrims have shared with us the graces they have received.
They report that they pray more, especially at Mass which has become truly alive for them. They join prayer groups, the daily rosary is important to them. They now pray the rosary and not just say the rosary If they go on their pilgrimage expecting or praying for a miracle they all return home knowing the greatest miracle is conversion of the soul and acceptance of God's will.
Pilgrims forgive more easily and find freedom and refreshment in their forgiveness. In essence, a true pilgrim is not on vacation. Their spiritual nourishment is far more important to them. Pilgrims discover spiritual eyes which focus on the beauty of God rather than the beauty of the world.
The inconveniences of life become "stepping stones" for grace rather than something to complain about or tolerate. People use one word to encompass their experience as a pilgrim - PEACE.
behalf of the recently formed Choir Association, I would like to thank
everyone who attended the launch on 17 December 2000 and helped to make it
such a success.
evening began with a service of Advent carols and readings in the church
followed by the launch ceremony in the Parish Hall. People enjoyed festive
refreshments of mulled wine and mince 'pies' and cream whilst Mrs Pellow's
Temperance Consort kindly provided background music. Father Cormac then had
the honour of cutting the cake! The atmosphere was superb and everyone on
the committee feels that the future looks very bright for the association
with such positive support.
next event is on 16th June 2001. It will be a musical afternoon with
refreshments and will take place in beautiful Georgian surroundings in Hayle.
Look out for details nearer the event!
there is anyone interested in finding out more about the Choir Association,
please ask any choir member, or pick up a pink leaflet which can be found at
the back of the Church.
CREDIT UNION LTD
UNIONS are the flavour of the month at the moment, you hear them mentioned
on the radio, in the newspapers and someone has even written a television
drama about one.
what is a credit union7 It is a local organisation run by local people to
enable their members to save and borrow money locally. I stress that word
'local' because through amounts of savings, however large or small, this
circulation of money within the community helps to keep local jobs and local
Credit Union is run by well-trained volunteers, and members elect all the
officers at the Annual Meeting. We are registered as a Friendly Society and
membership is open to anyone who lives in Penwith or who works here though
living outside the district. Members who save with us regularly for thirteen
weeks can then apply for a low interest loan which can be two or three times
the amount they have in their own savings~ Savings can be paid in cash at
our Collection Points, by post or by standing order if you have a bank
account. Our office at St John's Hall in Penzance is open Monday to Friday
from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm and we have Collection Points there on Tuesday
between 10.00 am and 2.00 pm and Saturday between 10.00 am and 12.00 pm. In
St Ives Junior School we are open during term time between 8.45 am and 9.30
am and we plan to open on 20 March between 10.00 am and 12.00 pm at the
Volunteer Bureau, Chapel Street, St Just.
We're friendly people. Come and see us.
saw a number of parishioners taking part in a Week of Prayer for Christian
Unity. The week started with a prayer service at the Church of St Mary the
Virgin, followed by another service at the Salvation Army Citadel. The group
then moved to our own church and ended with another service at Richmond
week later the Week of Prayer was brought to an end at our own church with a
joint Evensong service. The church was about 90% full for the service and
the power of the singing by the congregation - led by our own choir, was
Christian Unity action brings to mind a story of a devout parishioner who
died and appeared at the gates of heaven. The angel on duty asked his name.
The fellow said who he was.
angel then looked down on his list of people due for check-in that day and
which the parishioner replied: "Roman Catholic".
said the angel, "I don't see your name under any of my headings, you
will have to go through that door over there", pointing to a door
marked 'Purgatory'. "You will have to stay there until you work out
under which heading on my lists you are listed! When you have worked it out,
ring the bell just inside the door and someone will come back for you".
through the door which had been indicated he found himself in a large hall
with lots of people. He was quite disconsolate. Hadn't he done everything
his church had asked of him. Regular Holy Communion, Confession (he was one
of the older fellows!), Holy Days, Sundays, etc...? Surely as good a
Catholic as he had been was qualified to go to heaven?
a little while, a lady came over and started exchanging information with
him; "Who are you? Where did you live? Did you know old 'so-and-so?
What is your religion"? He answered
her questions and it turned out she was a Methodist from Penzance. In fact,
he discovered that he knew a number of people there.
lady said: "I've been here a few days now and its very strange, there
are no Muslims, or Buddhists, or Jews, or Hindus in Purgatory. Only lots of
Catholics, Protestants, Methodists and Baptists, etc, I don't understand it.
Why didn't we all go straight to heaven like they did"?
man also couldn't understand it, and he went away to find a quiet spot to
a few days he started smiling and laughing. He rushed to the door and rang
the bell. The door opened and the same angel appeared.
do you know which list you are on"? asked the angel.
the man replied. "I now realise that in heaven there is no difference
between Catholics, or Methodists, or Protestants, or Baptists, etc - so you
will find me listed under 'Christian"'!
angel stood aside and said wearily: "I do wish people would work this
out before they got here. It would make my work so much easier"!
is about one such deposit; a poem printed in the letters column of the Daily
Express, circa early 1952.
was in the RAF on National Service, having qualified after 12 months
training as a Radar Fitter, and now at RAF Lyneham being kitted out and
inoculated for the tropics, awaiting transit to the jungle war zone in
Son! that you should die in vain,
Fate! that you could so define
pain and joy you were born to me,
lie in Korean fields to rest,
that, with all its sorrows
love remains in constancy,
words began to agonise me for days. How would my own mother react should the
same fate befall me? I who had to become the man of the house to a family of
six, since aged 10. Had she not suffered life's adversities enough? World
War 1. 1930's Depression. Bereavement of a 5 year old child. The Blitz and
upheaval of World War II
I desert? Go AWOL? Refuse to wear the King's uniform and get dishonourably
usual I prayed for intercession to another Lady,
who also had a son killed, and to the Holy
Ghost for inspiration.
Gabriel blew his trumpet, and called George VI up to heaven!!!
the sixfooters in my intake were posted to London for special duties at the
King's funeral. The detachment was cancelled, and I spent the remaining year
of National Service instructing new recruits in the technicalities of RAF
Radar and Wireless equipment.
indeed, many thanks Gabriel.
just a good thing God above
say they want a better deal
by Sr Bernard (Author Unknown)
next Fundraising Event will be held in St Mary's Haven on St George's Night,
Monday 23 April. We have
planned a 'Curry Supper with Music', played on the organ; popular melodies
and tunes you can sing along to.
are also arranging a SUMMER DANCE on Friday 22 June. This will be held in
the Heamoor British Legion and the Group 'Sunset' have been booked. This
Group are pleasurable listening even if you don't dance (and they are not
loud). Their scope of music is broad so there will be something to suit all.
details will be announced later but please mark these dates in your diary.
now a plea! We raise a lot of money through Raffles at various events so if
you are able to donate any raffle prizes we really would appreciate it. If
you are able to support in this way, please contact either Christine Pearce
or Grace Bailey.
thanks indeed for your continued support.
Tuesday at 9.30 am in the Church.
ALL ARE WELCOME. Please come
Our Advertisers in the printed version of this issue.
Very many thanks indeed to all our advertisers. Please mention seeing their advertisements in this magazine and recommend them to your friends. Anyone wishing to place an advertisement please contact us for details.
Michelangelo's Deli., Coffee House and Licensed Restaurant. 27 Market
Jew Street, Penzance 01736 351100Penwithian Wholesalers Ltd. Trade cash & carry. 01736 366422
to "Laterally thinking" quiz
Page first created
29th April, 2001