This Week 16 - 23 January 2022

 St Benedict'sSt Oswald's
Sunday 16 January
2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (C)
Peace Sunday
10.30 am Mass
(The Berry Family
& Clive Church)
(Sat) 4.30 pm Vigil Mass
(The Parishioners)

8.30 am Mass
(Alan Williams)

10.30 am Service at Ryfields Village
Monday 17 January
St Anthony
7.00 pm Prayer Group
Tuesday 18 January
Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity
11.00 am Mass
(Norma Glasgow)
Wednesday 19 January11.00 am Funeral Mass
(Angela Ryan)
Thursday 20 January
4.20 pm Funeral Service at Walton Lea
(Michael O'Donnell)
11.00 am Mass
(Timothy & Annie Dewane)

7.00 pm Novena
Friday 21 January
St Agnes
11.00 am Mass
(Ann Brown)
Saturday 22 January4.30 pm Vigil Mass
(Jack Whittaker)
Sunday 23 January
3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (C)
Sunday of the Word of God
10.30 am Mass
(Josie Hackwell)
8.30 am Mass
(The Parishioners)

10.30 am Service at Ryfields Village

Quick Links

News & Information

USEFUL INFORMATION & RESOURCES  (Updated 15 January 2022)

This Week’s Newsletter:    16-01-22

Catholic Pictorial:    News – Catholic Pic   

Newsletter from Irenaeus:    Newsletter final final January 2022

Public Health Bulletin:    public-health-campaign-bulletin-december-2021



For the most up to date, reliable, medical and scientific updates, I recommend:

Dr John Campbell:    Dr. John Campbell – YouTube

Zoe Covid Study with Professor Tim Spector:    ZOE – YouTube

Warrington dashboard:    Coronavirus figures in Warrington |

Omicron Variant Symptoms

The Zoe Symptom Tracker suggests Omicron is presenting like a cold:


The top five symptoms reported are:  1) Runny Nose, 2) Headache, 3) Fatigue, 4) Sneezing, 5) Sore Throat.

Omicron is spreading faster than the common cold.  If you have a cold, there is a 50% chance that it is Covid so it is advisable to take a lateral flow test.


At the request of some parishioners, here are some of the things people say to me and my response based on my experience as a parish priest, hospital chaplain and school chaplain:

“Keep schools open” – it’s not about opening or closing schools, it’s about opening schools safely for children, staff and their families.  This is entirely possible if schools are provided with the resources they need to operate safely.  It is the lack of mitigations which is massively interrupting the education of children during the current pandemic.

“Lockdowns don’t work” – Lockdowns do work as illustrated by the Office for National Statistics.  They help to reduce the spread of infection when all else fails.  In the UK, we have avoided mitigations since July 2021.  Consequently, we have one of the highest sustained infection rates in the world.

“We have to learn to live with the virus” – What do you think we’ve been doing since March 2020?  If you mean “do nothing and let the virus spread”, that’s what the UK is doing at the moment.  Look at the result!  Learning to live with virus means taking the appropriate action so that we can go about our daily lives safely.

“Covid is just like a cold” – No, it isn’t.  Covid is very different to cold and flu and has a much higher death rate.

“Stop testing people so we can get back to our normal lives” – I really don’t think you’ve thought this through!

“Masks don’t work” – Masks are not 100%, no mitigation is 100%, but a combination of mitigations (face coverings, vaccines, social distancing, ventilation, etc) helps to keep transmission of the virus at a low level.

The virus spreads through the air and through droplets landing on surfaces, so wearing a mask, being careful about what we touch, sanitising our hands and ensuring ventilation in indoor settings, is the best way of protecting ourselves and others.

The Way Ahead

If we want the pandemic to end and get back to ‘normal’, we won’t achieve this by ignoring the high infection rate and putting all our apples in one basket, i.e. vaccination.  Dr Tedros, the Director-General of the World Health Organization, advises:  “It’s not vaccines instead of masks, it’s not vaccines instead of distancing, it’s not vaccines instead of ventilation or hand hygiene. Do it all. Do it consistently. Do it well.”  In addition, he advises we help every other country in the world to vaccinate at least 70% of their citizens.



1)  Face coverings are required for all services in church.  These need to cover both nose and mouth.

2)  Contact tracing continues but by using the QR codes posted at the entrance of the church.

3)  Sanitising hands as you arrive also continues.

4)  Social distancing:  On one side of the church, we have reintroduced strict social distancing measures for those who feel safer with this provision; on the other side of the church, we ask that you leave a space between the people either side of you (unless they are in the same household) and try not to sit directly behind or in front of another person (i.e. zigzag seating).

5)  Communion has been brought back to its usual place in the Mass, but stewards will guide you forward a bench at a time to ensure social distancing.

6)  Leaving church continues a bench at a time for now to ensure social distancing.

Parish Office

The Parish Office is open Monday to Friday, 9.00 am – 5.00 pm.

Email:  [email protected] 

Sacrament of Reconciliation

Confession is available on request or by appointment.

Private Prayer

St Benedict’s is open for private prayer, Monday to Friday 10.00 am – 3.00 pm.  Both churches are also open 30 minutes before and after each Mass.

Baptisms, Weddings & Funerals

There is no longer a restriction on the number of people who can attend a Baptism, Wedding or Funeral at St Benedict’s and St Oswald’s, but those attending must wear a face covering and practice social distancing for the safety of everyone else.

Communion at Home

If you are no longer able to come to church and would like to receive communion at home, please contact the Parish Office on 630127.

Care of the Sick & Dying

Fr John Schofield and I continue to cover the hospital.  If you are concerned about a loved one, please ask the hospital to page us and we will attend as soon as possible.  Similarly, if you’re worried about a loved one in a care home, please ask the care home to contact us directly.

Many thanks,
Fr Dave




Pastoral Letter:    pastoral_letter_first_sunday_advent_2021

Pastoral Plan Website:

Pastoral Plan Overview:    overview-of-the-pastoral-plan-final



There are four ways you can continue to support the parish financially at this time:

1) You could put your weekly offering aside and then bring it to church when you next visit.

2) You could set up a standing order.  You can download a form here:


3) You can make one-off and regular donations to the Parish online here:

4) Text giving is also available for both one-off and regular donations.

Details can be found here:    text-giving




#YouAreNotAlone is the Government’s campaign to reassure victims of domestic abuse that there is help for them during the current crisis:

If you are in immediate danger, call 999 and ask for the police.  If you call 999 from a mobile and cannot speak, press 55 and this will connect you to the police.

National Domestic Violence Helpline:
0808 2000 247 or

Practical Booklet on Domestic Abuse:




Useful resources from Public Health England and The Mental Health Foundation:




Contacts for support:

Warrington Council have a great website:


New 24/7 Mental Health Crisis Line
People of all ages, including children and young people, living in Warrington who are experiencing a mental health crisis can access support through a new, 24/7, mental health crisis line:  0800 051 1508  (This is a FREE number)


Those living with Dementia and their Carers

The Archdiocese has provided links to resources which may be helpful for those living with dementia and their carers:



Dementia Prayer Week | RP Books


Additional Resources:

Sleep problems during the current pandemic:


The importance of laughter in our daily lives:


Relaxation techniques:






Messy Church for Children:

Books for Parents and Children to read together:






Warrington Animal Welfare

Website:    Warrington Animal Welfare

Telephone:    01925 748638  (10.00 am – 4.00 pm)

Email:    [email protected]

Lucky Hens Rescue


Lucky Hens Rescue is a non profit organisation that rescues hens that are going to be slaughtered and tries to rehome them.  A few parishioners have adopted hens and alerted me to the charity.  You can read more here:

Lucky Hens Rescue – Lucky Hens Rescue – Non Profit Organisation – Based in Ince, Wigan


Fr Dave's Blog

Second Week in Ordinary Time

Thursday 20 January 2022


Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity – Day Three

Christ’s coming disturbs the ways of the world.

In contrast to so many national leaders, the Lord comes in humility denouncing the evil of injustice and oppression that accompanies the ambition for power and status.

The coming of Jesus calls for a change of heart and a transformation of life, so that people will be liberated from all that dehumanises them and causes them suffering.

Jesus shows us that God is with those who suffer because each person has a dignity as God’s beloved child. Thus, Jesus’ presence creates disturbance precisely because He rocks the boat of the rich and the powerful who work only for their own interests and neglect the common good. But, for those who work for peace and unity, Christ’s coming brings the light of hope.

Today, we are invited to commit ourselves to the constructive action of making justice a reality in our world. This implies the need to reflect and acknowledge the instances when our ways are not God’s ways of justice and peace. When Christians work together for justice and peace our efforts are more powerful. And when Christians work together in this way, the answer to our prayer for Christian unity is made visible such that others recognise in us Christ’s presence in the world today. Through our words and actions, we can bring the light of hope to so many who are still living in the darkness of political unrest, social poverty, and structural discrimination.

The Good News is that God is faithful, and He is always the one strengthening us and protecting us from harm, and inspiring us to work for the good of others, especially those living in the darkness of suffering, hatred, violence and pain.


Wednesday 19 January 2022


Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity – Day Two

The prophet Jeremiah denounced the bad leadership of the kings of Israel who divided and scattered the people. Theirs was a leadership that destroyed nations and drove their citizens into exile. In contrast, the Lord promises a shepherd king who will ‘execute justice and righteousness in the land’ and gather together the members of his flock.

Our world craves good leadership and is constantly seeking someone who will fulfil this desire. Where can one find such a leader? Only in Christ have we seen the example of a king or leader after God’s heart. As we are called to follow him, we are also called to emulate his way of servant-kingship in the world and in the Church. In Christ we encounter one who does not tear down and divide but builds up and makes whole for the glory of God’s name. His rule is not self-serving and he does not use force. Rather in Him we encounter a loving, humble servant who does not regard equality with God as something to be exploited. He is one who comes to serve, rather than be served, and his followers are called to do the same.

Today, the Middle East is experiencing the loss of its people to exile as ‘righteousness and justice’ are becoming scarce commodities not only there but throughout the world. Yet we have a hope that will not be shaken even if ‘the nations are in an uproar’ and ‘the kingdoms totter’ around us.

Leaders, both in the world and in the Church, have responsibility to bring together rather than to scatter or divide the people of God. So much division in the world and in the Church is caused by the desire for position, power and self-advantage. The more faithfully Christians emulate the servant leadership of Christ the more division in both the world and the Church will be overcome. As we work for righteousness, justice and peace for the wellbeing of all, we witness humbly to the shepherd-king, and draw others into His presence.


God, our only refuge and strength,
we glorify you for you are a just and righteous God.
We confess before you that we often covet worldly models of leadership.
Help us to seek our Lord Jesus Christ
not in the palaces of the powerful
but in the humble manger and to emulate him in his meekness.
Encourage us to empty ourselves
as we serve each other in obedience to you.
We pray in the name of Christ
who with you and with the Holy Spirit reigns forever in glory.


Tuesday 18 January 2022

Christian Unity 2022

Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity

This year’s Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity 2022 has been prepared by the Middle East Council of Churches.  They have chosen a theme from the Epiphany:  “We saw the star in the East, and we came to worship him” (Mt 2:2).  More than ever, in these difficult times, we need a light that shines in the darkness.  Christians proclaim that this light has been manifested in Jesus Christ.

Reflection for Day One

In this fragile and uncertain world, we look for a light, a ray of hope from afar.  In the midst of evil, we long for goodness.  We look for the good within ourselves, but so often we are overwhelmed by our weakness that hope fails us.

Our confidence rests in the God we worship.  God, in his wisdom, enabled us to hope for divine intervention; but we had not anticipated that God’s intervention would be a person, and that the Lord himself would be the light in our midst.  This exceeded all our expectations.

God’s gift to us is a ‘spirit of power, and love’.  Not by relying on our own strength and ability are we drawn forward on the way to this perfect light, but rather by God’s Holy Spirit.

In the midst of humanity’s darkness, the star from the East shone.  In it we see a light that penetrates the depths of the darkness that separates us from one another.  The star’s light was not only an illumination at a particular historical moment but it continues to shine and change the face of history.  Throughout the ages, and ever since the star first appeared, the world has come to know through the lives of Christ’s followers the hope that is inspired by the Holy Spirit.  These give witness to God’s work in history, and to the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit.

Despite the vicissitudes of history and the changing of circumstances, the Risen One continues to shine, moving within the flow of history like a beacon guiding all into this perfect light and overcoming the darkness which separates us from one another.


Lord God,
illumine our path by the light of Christ who moves before us and leads us.
Enlighten us and dwell within us.
Guide us to discover a small manger in our hearts where a great light still sleeps.
Creator of light,
we thank you for the gift of that unfading Star, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour.
May he be a beacon for our pilgrimage.
Heal our divisions and draw us closer to the Light that we may find our unity in him.


Monday 17 January 2022

peace not absence of disagreements


2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (C) – 16 January 2022


Peace Sunday

Today, the Bishops of England and Wales invite us to observe a Day of Prayer for Peace.

Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Sunday 2C) 2022

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Sunday 2C)

Reflecting on the Readings:    prego-sunday-2-otc-2022

Pope Francis’ Message for Peace:    World-Peace-Message


Some Funnies

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This could be useful…

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God bless,
Fr Dave

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