Weekdays of Christmas Time

Feast of the Baptism of the Lord (B) – 8 January 2024


Today is the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord and the last day of Christmas.


Almighty ever-living God,
who, when Christ had been baptised in the River Jordan
and as the Holy Spirit descended upon him,
solemnly declared him your beloved Son,
grant that your children by adoption,
reborn of water and the Holy Spirit,
may always be well pleasing to you.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.

Gospel (Mark 1: 7-11)

In the course of his preaching John the Baptist said: ‘Someone is following me, someone who is more powerful than I am, and I am not fit to kneel down and undo the strap of his sandals. I have baptised you with water, but he will baptise you with the Holy Spirit.’

It was at this time that Jesus came from Nazareth in Galilee and was baptised in the Jordan by John. No sooner had he come up out of the water than he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit, like a dove, descending on him. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; my favour rests on you.’


Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord – 6/7 January 2024


Mass sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Epiphany) 2024

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Epiphany) 2024

Reflection on the Readings:    christmastide-2023-24-to-read-online


Friday 5 January 2024

Prayer Thought

“If our hearts and minds struggle to engage in prayer, we can always still pray with our bodies. Physical gestures and postures like making the sign of the cross, kneeling, raising our hands, joining hands, genuflection, prostration are prayer. We should never underestimate the importance of these bodily gestures. Simply put, when we can’t pray in any other way, we can still pray through our bodies!”

Fr Ron Rolheiser, OMI


Thursday 4 January 2024

be still and breathe


Wednesday 3 January 2024

school of prayer

come and see day


Tuesday 2 January 2024 – St Basil the Great & St Gregory Nazianzen 


“Into this world, this demented inn, in which there is absolutely no room for Him at all, Christ has come uninvited. But because He cannot be at home in it, because He is out of place in it, and yet must be in it, His place is with those others for whom there is no room. His place is with those who do not belong, who are rejected by power because they are regarded as weak, those who are discredited, who are denied status as persons, who are tortured, bombed, and exterminated. With those for whom there is no room, Christ is present in the world.”

Thomas Merton in an essay titled “Time of the End is the Time of No Room”


Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God – 1 January 2024

mary & jesus4

Mass sheet we will be using in church:    

Solemnity of Mary Mother of God Sheet 2024

new year 2 (2016_06_02 17_41_42 UTC)


Feast of the Holy Family (B) – 31 December 2023

simeon and anna

Mass sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Holy Family B) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Holy Family B) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    christmastide-2023-24-to-read-online

Pastoral Letter:    Pastoral Letter Holy Family 2023


Some Funnies

santa parking charge


parents of little drummer boy


thanks for the ipad


God bless,
Fr Dave

Octave of the Nativity of the Lord

Thursday 28 December 2022 – Feast of the Holy Innocents

holy innocents

Matthew 2: 13-18

After the wise men had left, the angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, ‘Get up, take the child and his mother with you, and escape into Egypt, and stay there until I tell you, because Herod intends to search for the child and do away with him.’ So Joseph got up and, taking the child and his mother with him, left that night for Egypt, where he stayed until Herod was dead. This was to fulfil what the Lord had spoken through the prophet:  I called my son out of Egypt.

Herod was furious when he realised that he had been outwitted by the wise men, and in Bethlehem and its surrounding district he had all the male children killed who were two years old or under, reckoning by the date he had been careful to ask the wise men. It was then that the words spoken through the prophet Jeremiah were fulfilled:

A voice was heard in Ramah,
sobbing and loudly lamenting:
it was Rachel weeping for her children,
refusing to be comforted because they were no more.


Wednesday 27 December 2023 – Feast of St John, Apostle & Evangelist

The blanket bombing of civilian populations must end!

Excerpt from the Homily given by the Bishop of Elphin, the Most Reverend Kevin Doran, for Christmas 2023:

“The prophet Isaiah, who (let it be said), was a pre-Christian, Jewish prophet, speaks very graphically of what happens when human relationships break down; “the rod of the oppressor”, the “footgear of battle”, the “cloak rolled in blood”. These are images which, unfortunately, are just as real and relevant today as they were in the time of Isaiah, except that we can now add “rockets, drones, missiles and high-powered rifles”. The promised child was born but the hope he brings has yet to be realised because, somehow, we have continuously failed to understand the meaning of his birth. We have not understood that we can never take peace for granted; that, like God, we must always be ready to make the first move.

“It is not always that easy to know what our first move should be. What does the Holy Spirit prompt us to do? This is something that we need to bring to prayer. It seems to me that present war in Gaza calls for a very clear response from Christians. Without denying to the State of Israel the right to actively defend its people and its territory, I think it has to be said very clearly that the blanket bombing of civilian populations and the destruction of everything that is necessary to sustain life simply cannot be justified. It must end and it must end immediately. This is a message which we can all communicate respectfully to those who need to hear it.”

For full text of homily:    Bishop Doran: ‘the blanket bombing of civilian populations … must end and it must end immediately’ | ICN (indcatholicnews.com)


Tuesday 26 December 2023 – Feast of St Stephen, First Martyr

god does not eliminate injustice

Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord



A very happy Christmas to you all!

6.00 pm Christmas Vigil Mass at St Oswald’s
Mass Sheet:    Christmas Vigil Mass Sheet 2023

11.30 pm Christmas Midnight Mass at St Benedict’s
Mass Sheet:    Christmas Midnight Mass Sheet 2023

8.30 am Christmas Dawn Mass at St Oswald’s
Mass Sheet:    Christmas Dawn Mass Sheet 2023

10.30 am Christmas Day Mass at St Benedict’s
Mass Sheet:    Christmas Day Mass Sheet 2023


Christmas Eve
BBC Radio 4 will be broadcasting the annual Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols from King’s College, Cambridge, at 3.00 pm (repeated on BBC Radio 3 on Christmas Day at 1.00 pm).
BBC Radio 4 will also be broadcasting Midnight Mass from Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral at 11.30 pm.

Christmas Day
Mass will be livestreamed at 11.00 am from Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral on YouTube:

Monday 25 December 2023, Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord – Christmas Day – YouTube


Some funnies…

feel free to lay kid in my dinner


last year we went to them


God bless,
Fr Dave


4th Week of Advent

4th Sunday of Advent (B) – 23 December 2023


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Advent 4B) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Advent 4B) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:   prego-advent-4-year-b-2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Helping the People of the Holy Land:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies

feel free to lay kid in my dinner


i buried elf on the shelf



God bless,
Fr Dave

3rd Week of Advent

Saturday 23 December 2023


Christmas Eve
6.00 pm Christmas Vigil Mass at St Oswald’s
11.30 pm Christmas Midnight Mass at St Benedict’s

Christmas Day
8.30 am Christmas Dawn Mass at St Oswald’s
10.30 am Christmas Day Mass at St Benedict’s


Friday 22 December 2023

coping at christmas


Thursday 21 December 2023

We are loved by an unending love.

We are embraced by arms that find us
even when we are hidden from ourselves.
We are touched by fingers that soothe us
even when we are too proud for soothing.
We are counseled by voices that guide us
even when we are too embittered to hear.
We are loved by an unending love.

We are supported by hands that uplift us
even in the midst of a fall.
We are urged on by eyes that meet us
even when we are too weak for meeting.
We are loved by an unending love.

Embraced, touched, soothed, and counseled,
Ours are the arms, the fingers, the voices;
Ours are the hands, the eyes, the smiles;
We are loved by an unending love.

Rami M. Shapiro (b. 1951)


Wednesday 20 December 2023


For the inhabitants of the Holy Land, a Christmas of pain and mourning looms. We do not want to leave them alone. May we stand by them in prayer and tangible aid. The suffering of Bethlehem is an open wound for the Middle East and the entire world.

Let us pray together before the Nativity scene for children who will experience a difficult Christmas in places where there is war, in refugee camps, in situations of profound misery.

Pope Francis


Tuesday 19 December 2023


Advent Penance Service

Service of Reconciliation this evening at 7.30 pm in St Oswald’s.  All welcome.

God of power and mercy,
open our hearts in welcome.
Remove the things that hinder us
from receiving Christ with joy,
so that we may share his wisdom
and become one with him when he comes in glory.
Through Christ our Lord.


Monday 18 December 2023


In the times when we find it hard to pray.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we are too occupied by busyness.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we stop working for the Kingdom.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we find it hard to forgive.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we lack compassion towards our neighbours.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we want only to think of ourselves.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we do not want to get involved in social issues.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we want to have more material possessions.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we put off living as if this day is the last.
Come, Lord Jesus!

In the times when we fail to long for you.
Come, Lord Jesus!



Killings at Holy Family Catholic Church, Gaza:

rcdow.org.uk-Cardinal expresses horror at killings in Holy Family Church compound


3rd Sunday of Advent – 17 December 2023


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Advent 3B) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Advent 3B) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-advent-3-year-b-2023-1


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Helping the People of the Holy Land:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies







God bless,
Fr Dave

2nd Week of Advent

Friday 15 December 2023


Prayer for Peace in the Holy Land

O God of all
Of Abraham, Sarah, Hagar, Isaac, and Ishmael:
Our hearts are broken in pieces at the suffering and murder of your people.
Our voices cry for peace and for justice.

Comfort those who grieve,
Console and heal the injured,
Be close to those in fear,
Restrain with your mighty hand those who perpetrate violence.

Send us your wisdom in all that we say and do,
That our voice may always seek justice, peace and security for all.

(Churches Together in Britain & Ireland)


Thursday 14 December 2023 – St John of the Cross

john of the cross

“In the twilight of life, God will not judge us on our earthly possessions and human success, but rather on how much we have loved.”

“In the inner stillness where meditation leads, the Spirit secretly anoints the soul and heals our deepest wounds.”

“Silence is God’s first language.”

“However softly we speak, God is so close to us that he can hear us; nor do we need wings to go in search of him, but merely to seek solitude and contemplate him within ourselves, without being surprised to find such a good Guest there.”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591)


Wednesday 13 December 2023 – St Lucy

the heart of a child


Tuesday 12 December 2023

Youstina Safar

Hear Angels Cry

There won’t be a Christmas tree or traditional festivities in the place of Christ’s birth this year because of the thousands killed in the conflict between Hamas and Israel.  Instead, the focus in the Church of the Nativity and Manger Square in Bethlehem will be on praying for peace.

Amidst the rubble and ruins, a poignant voice rises to declare that the light of hope will persist in the small West Bank town where the Christmas story unfolded.

Youstina Safar, a resident of Bethlehem and a student at Bethlehem University, has collaborated with the London-based band, Ooberfuse, to deliver a powerful message through their Christmas song, “Hear Angels Cry”.  The song resonates with the belief that hope for a better future, born in the hearts of humanity, remains resilient in the face of aggression.

Pope Francis, has not only heard about the song, but has sent a message to Cardinal Vincent Nichols commending it for drawing attention to the Holy Land.  The Pope wrote that his hope was that the song “will inspire many people this Christmas to pray for a new flourishing of fraternal solidarity, reconciliation and peace in the Holy Land.”

Singer, Youstina Safar, hopes “Hear Angels Cry” will provide a shard of light in the darkness: “In the midst of despair, our song Hear Angels Cry stands as a testament to the enduring spirit of hope in Bethlehem.”

Cherrie Anderson, from the band Ooberfuse, remarks: “The dimming lights in Manger Square honour those who tragically lost their lives in the Holy Land. Hear Angels Cry embodies Jesus’ message of love, prevailing even in the face of hopelessness. All proceeds from the song will directly benefit those suffering in Gaza, particularly the children reconstructing the fragments of their lives.”

Proceeds from the song will go to Friends of the Holy Land, a UK charity which is also registered in Palestine.  Through its office in Bethlehem, it is well-placed to get urgent, personalised aid to the families most in need in Gaza and the West Bank, and will make sure the most in need are helped quickly by the proceeds from the song.

Watch on Youtube now:    https://bit.ly/418x6lF

Friends of the Holy Land (FHL):    www.friendsoftheholyland.org.uk/


Monday 11 December 2023

“Love makes us happy not only in heaven but also here on earth.  If we want to be truly happy, then let us learn to transform everything into love, offering to others our work and our time, speaking kindly words and doing good deeds.  We can all do it!”

Pope Francis, 11 December 2023


2nd Sunday of Advent – 10 December 2023


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Advent 2B) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Advent 2B) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-sunday-advent-2-year-b-2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Helping the People of the Holy Land:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies







God bless,
Fr Dave

1st Week of Advent

Friday 8 December 2023 – The Immaculate Conception of Mary

ceasefire now


Thursday 7 December 2023

click to enlarge



Wednesday 6 December 2023

A beautiful service from York Minster to begin the season of Advent:

Live: Advent Procession broadcast from York Minster – YouTube

Order of Service:    Advent-Procession-2023


Tuesday 5 December 2023 – St John Almond

the story of advent


Monday 4 December 2023


An Advent Prayer

Loving God,
as your light grows in the dark of winter,
bring its strength and its hope to the people of the Holy Land
and to all people who suffer through war and conflict.
Just as you sent the star of Bethlehem to lead the way to your Son,
guide all people – leaders and citizens – to follow your ways of peace and justice.
As we remember the difficult journey of Mary and Joseph,
may the Holy Family be a source of courage for each of us,
helping us to reach out in friendship to the oppressed and displaced of this world.
Help us to see in the Christ-child we welcome this Christmas,
the one who came to bring an end to all divisions.
Through Christ our Lord.

(From the Diocese of Kildare and Leighlin, Ireland)


1st Sunday of Advent – 3 December 2023


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Advent 1B) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Advent 1B) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-sunday-advent-1-year-b-2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies






God bless,
Fr Dave

34th Week in Ordinary Time

Friday 1 December 2023

hugh donleavy

Please pray for Deacon Hugh Donleavy who will be ordained to the priesthood this evening by Archbishop Malcolm at St Alban’s, Warrington.

Lord our God,
who in governing your people
make use of the ministry of Priests,
grant a persevering obedience to your will
to this Deacon of your Church,
whom you graciously choose today
for the office of the priesthood,
so that by his ministry and life
he may gain glory for you in Christ.
Who lives and reigns with you
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.


Thursday 30 November 2023 – Feast of St Andrew


COP28 Climate Summit

As the COP28 climate summit gets under way, the Lead Bishop for Environmental Issues, Bishop John Arnold, has reiterated his call for the nations of the world to act:

“Whilst the extreme heat of last summer may be a distant memory for many of us, huge numbers of people around the world have had their lives devastated by climate disasters in the last year or so. Given that the impacts of climate change will only worsen, there is no option but for COP28 to succeed.

“I have recently written to the Prime Minister asking his government to take a real leadership role at the COP28 climate summit. Pope Francis, and our own bishops of England and Wales, have asked political leaders to take decisive action at this summit and create energy transition targets that are efficient, obligatory and readily monitored. They must also consider how such targets can be enforced so that any agreements made at the summit are meaningful.

“Care for God’s creation is intrinsically bound up with care for all our brothers and sisters and, given that climate change will affect poor countries the most, caring for creation can be thought of as an intrinsic part of the ‘preferential option for the poor’.

“Referencing his hopes for COP28, in his recent Angelus address on 26 November, Pope Francis mentioned the tragedies of war and the dangers of climate change. Both, he said, are contrary to God’s plan who created everything for life. The world is becoming more dangerous and fractious, and conflicts are increasing. It is vital, at this time, that the governments of the world overcome their divisions and work to promote real healing as well as effective co-operation to reduce carbon emissions.

“I also ask Catholics in England and Wales to pray for the success of COP28 – that real progress will be made. And I urge people to use the resources provided by our agency CAFOD so that politicians and the general public are made more aware of the urgency of this issue.”

COP28 is the 28th United Nations Climate Change conference, held from 30 November until 12 December 2023, at the Expo City, Dubai.

(Source: Catholic Bishops Conference of England & Wales)


Wednesday 29 November 2023

“Let us continue to pray for the serious situation in Israel and Palestine. It is the ordinary people who suffer. Those who wage war do not suffer. Let us ask for peace. And may we not forget the dear Ukrainian people, who are suffering so much and are still at war.”

Pope Francis, 29 November 2023


Tuesday 28 November 2023

Fr John Poland installed as an Honorary Canon

Canon John Poland

Canon John Poland was installed as an Honorary Canon in a special Mass at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King.

Canon Poland was awarded the honour following his appointment as the Judicial Vicar in the first instance in the newly launched National Tribunal Service of England and Wales.

In total, four clergy of our Archdiocese were appointed to roles on the new NTS. Bishop Tom Neylon, Vicar General, was appointed Bishop-Moderator in the second instance. Canon Aidan Prescott, Vicar General, was appointed a Judge in the first service and Fr Sean Riley, Chancellor, was appointed Promoter of Justice in the second instance.

The Mass was celebrated by Archbishop Malcolm McMahon, who works closely with Canon Poland. He described it as a great gift to be able to install Fr John as an honorary Canon.

The Mass was celebrated in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel in the Cathedral, with the Chapter of Canons, the Archbishop, and other priests, including other officers of the NTS in attendance.


Monday 27 November 2023

“We do not know God very well at all when we fear coming into God’s presence replete with all that is within us, weaknesses as well as strengths. Nothing we do can ever lessen God’s tenderness towards us.”

Fr Ron Rolheiser, OMI


Solemnity of the Christ the King (A) – 26 November 2023

World Youth Day

Christ the King A

Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Christ the King A) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Christ the King A) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-christ-the-king-year-a-2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies







God bless,
Fr Dave

33rd Week in Ordinary Time

Thursday 23 November 2023

Parish Administrator


Wednesday 22 November 2023

November Thoughts

“Today you will be with me in paradise!” Jesus speaks those words to the good thief on the cross and they’re meant for every one of us who dies without yet fully being a saint and without having had the time and opportunity to make all the amends and speak all the apologies that we owe to others. There is still time after death, on both sides, for reconciliation and healing to happen because inside the communion of saints we have privileged access to each other and there we can finally speak all of those words that we couldn’t speak before. We can reach across death’s divide.

Fr Ron Rolheiser, OMI


Tuesday 21 November 2023


Monday 20 November 2023

blessed is the crisis


33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) – 19 November 2023

World Day of the Poor


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    Mass Sheet (Sunday 33A) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (33A) 2023

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-sunday-33-ota-2023-1

Message from Pope Francis:    Pope Francis World Day of the Poor 2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


Some Funnies







God bless,
Fr Dave

32nd Week in Ordinary Time

Friday 17 November 2023

CSAN Statement on the Israel-Gaza Conflict

“Caritas Social Action Network supports the call by Pope Francis for an immediate ceasefire in the Israeli-Gaza conflict.  In his comments after the Angelus on 29 October, Pope Francis said, “…in Gaza, may space be opened to guarantee humanitarian aid, and may the hostages be released right away. Let no one abandon the possibility that the weapons might be silenced – let there be a ceasefire”.

“We deplore the atrocities carried out by Hamas on 7 October and we agree with our sister Caritas agency CAFOD that “responding to the atrocities committed by Hamas with what amounts to a collective punishment of civilians living in the occupied Palestinian territory is leading to unimaginable levels of death and suffering”.

“We urge the Catholic community in England and Wales to pray for peace and reconciliation and to learn more about the background to this conflict, including the role played by Britain during the period of the Mandate (1920-1948).  We urge Catholics to raise the voice of peace and justice in their communities with their elected representatives.

“In particular, we urge all Catholics to take a stand against anti-Semitic and Islamophobic hate crimes in their own communities.  We share the concern of Cardinal Vincent Nichols, who has appealed for “restraint and the total avoidance of hateful language and action, as the impact of this conflict is felt in communities here”.

“Catholics in England and Wales can also respond in charity to the worsening situation by donating to the CAFOD appeal.  Donations to the Crisis Appeal will support those affected and get funds to local trusted experts who have been working alongside communities helping those most in need to receive urgent humanitarian aid including food, water and emergency shelter.”

Raymond Friel, CEO, Caritas Social Action Network 


Thursday 16 November 2023

“I know…”

The risen Christ can reach down to the deepest corners where we are hiding,
prisoners of our loneliness, our fears, our anxieties, our despair,
our depressions, our cynicism, our shame,
and there he shows us his hands and his side.

This is an important gesture.  It is Jesus’ way of saying to us:

“I know what you are suffering because I shared it.
I know your sadness because I felt it,
I know your feeling of having been abandoned by God because I screamed it,
I know your loneliness because I was betrayed by all my friends.
But thanks to me all this suffering has become a source of life, peace and joy,
and it reopens to doors, it abolishes the walls,
it restores the relationship with the Father.”

From Luigi Gioia in ‘Say It To God’ (Bloomsbury, 2017)


Wednesday 15 November 2023

Israel and Palestine

“Our thoughts turn every day to the very serious situation in Israel and Palestine.  I am close to all those who suffer, Palestinians and Israelis.  May the weapons be stopped: they will never lead to peace, and may the conflict not widen! Enough! Enough, brothers! Enough!” (Pope Francis, 12 November 2023)

The health ministry in Gaza says the number of people killed since Israel launched its retaliatory strikes is at least 11,255.  Of those, 4,630 are children and 3,130 are women.

Israel says 1,200 people were killed in the attack on 7 October and around 240 were taken back to Gaza as hostages.


Tuesday 14 November 2023

Advert for new Parish Administrator:

Careers – Join the team (liverpoolcatholic.org.uk)


Monday 13 November 2023


World Day of the Poor

Next Sunday is the seventh World Day of the Poor established by Pope Francis in 2017.

The Caritas Social Action Network (CSAN) has prepared a Novena in preparation for the day.  You can download it here:



32nd Sunday in Ordinary Time (A) – 12 November 2023

Remembrance Sunday


Mass Sheet we will be using in church:    

Mass Sheet (Remembrance Sunday 32A) 2023

Bidding Prayers:    Bidding Prayers (Remembrance 2023)

Reflection on the Readings:    prego-sunday-32-ota-2023


Prayers for Peace:    Prayers for Peace

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:    Israeli-Palestinian Crisis


God bless,
Fr Dave