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OUR LADY OF PERPETUAL SOCCOUR

Our Lady of Perpetual Succour
We continue our devotions to Our Lady for the month of May. This Sunday the statue of Our Lady is due to be crowned at St Andrew’s church to show our love for her. Our Lady was named one of the patrons of our diocese under the title of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour, or Our Lady of perpetual help. We have a picture of the icon in every church. Below are some of the descriptions of the history and meaning of the icon taken from the diocesan calendar of saints and other sources.

The icon was painted in in Crete in the fourteenth century. It was venerated there with great devotion as a miraculous image. It eventually found its way to Rome where it survived the destruction of Napoleon’s army as well as being lost for decades. When found it came into the care of the Redemptorists in the nineteenth century. When bishop Lacey, the first bishop of Middlesbrough was a student in Rome he saw it. He went on to make our Lady of Perpetual Succour a patron of the diocese.

Icons are holy paintings which represent to us a truth about God. The painter prepares by praying, fasting and often going to Confession. In a sense God reaches out to someone who venerates an icon, and makes His Presence felt. Each part of the icon has a meaning. Here we see Mary as the Mother of God, holding the child Jesus. The archangels Gabriel and Raphael are holding the instruments of the Passion, the Cross, the reed, the lance and the sponge. A sandal falls off Jesus’ foot to illustrate this disturbing scene. Mary remains calm and holds Jesus lovingly. The icon invites us to place our hands in the hands of Mary, to have confidence in God especially if we are shaken by fear or temptation. Mary invites us to trust her as a compassionate mother, appointed by God to offer us perpetual help. Let us bring to her all our needs and prayer intentions for others with great trust.

The Novena in honour of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour is recited again on Thursdays after Mass, all welcome.

DIOCESAN SYNOD DAY
If anyone from the parish would like to attend please ring 01642 850505 for details. It takes place on Saturday 21st May, 10am-3.30pm in the Cathedral, all welcome.

DAY OF PRAYER FOR EASTERN CHRITIANS
On Sunday 22nd May we are invited to pray for our brothers and sisters in the East. We remember the plight of Christians in the Holy Land and Middle Eastern countries, a minority often treated as second class citizens. We remember those also who are threatened for standing up for freedom to live out our Faith; only last week the retired bishop of Hong Kong, Cardinal Zen, ninety years old, was arrested for defending those freedoms which we take for granted.

ASCENSION THURSDAY
Forty days after Easter we celebrate the Ascension of Jesus into Heaven. This is a Holyday of Obligation. Masses in the Parish are 10.30am at St Anne’s & 7pm at St Andrew’s.

CONGRATULATIONS
Last Wednesday Megan Donaghy-Marshall was Confirmed in the Cathedral by Bishop Drainey along with other young people from the deanery. We wish her and her family every blessing and congratulations.

FELLOWSHIP MASS
St Andrew’s is hosting the Mass this Sunday at 3pm followed by refreshments in the hall. If anyone can make some sandwiches for the table it would be most appreciated and can be dropped off at the hall from 2.00 pm.

ROSARY
Sunday at 1040am at St Annes’s and Monday –Saturday 9am at St Andrew’s.

NOVENA
The Novena in honour of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour is recited after Mass on Thursdays.

FIRST HOLY COMMUNION MASS
is Saturday 11th June at 11am. Please keep the children, their families and their catechists in your prayers.

DAY OF PRAYER AND PILGRIMAGE
Saturday 4th June 3pm Mass at Lindisfarne, details from www.stellamaris.org.uk

FAMILY SOCIAL QUIZ NIGHT
St Andrew’s hall Friday 10th June from 6pm. Raffle prizes welcome. Bring your own food and drink. Quiz begins at 6.30pm, entrance £1 per adult. Why not get a team together of family, friends or work colleagues and come along and give it a go.

ANNIVERSARIES OF PRIESTHOOD
Mgr Gerry Dasey (40th), Canon Eddie Gubbins(40th), Canon David Grant (40th)& Fr John Bane(25th) are celebrating their anniversaries together with a Mass in the Cathedral, Wednesday 22nd June 7pm, all welcome.

FOOD BANKS
We continue to pass on non-perishable food to the local food banks to support the needy in a practical way.

GIVE BLOOD AT ST. ANDREW'S
The Blood Donor service is visiting St. Andrew’s Hall on Friday, May 27th and are in urgent need of donors. Please visit blood.co.uk to make an appointment or for more information.


HE IS RISEN! — THE EASTER MESSAGE

He is risen
As we read through the Easter Gospels the Risen Jesus appears many times.

Usually the groups He appears to don’t recognise Jesus and they are frightened. So His first words are often : ‘Do not be afraid’, Peace be with you.’ ‘It is I.’ He wants to help them to realise that He keeps His promises, to encourage them in faith. The resurrection greatest proof and confirmation of all Jesus’ teachings and miracles.

Traditionally, after the resurrection, Jesus appears firstly to Our Lady, even though it is not recorded in the Gospels. He then appears to the holy women including Mary Magdalene, to the disciples on the road to Emmaus and then to the Apostles. Jesus comes to those who have been most faithful to Him beginning with those who stayed with Him all the way to Calvary.

The resurrection shows us that faith is rewarded, that confidence in God is more important than self-confidence and self promotion, and to find peace in our own lives we must start by being at peace with God, trusting Him and being committed to His service.


UKRAINE CRISIS — HOW YOU CAN HELP!

Ukrain flag_Pray for Ukraine
The scenes of war and destruction on the news since Russia's attack on Ukraine and the siege and bombing in Mariupol, including that of a children's and maternity hospital, have shocked many of us. The unjust invasion and the bombing of civilians have led to over ten million people fleeing for their lives.

How can we help?

Firstly we can pray and fast and offer penances for an end to the invasion and for the restoration of their country to the people of Ukraine. The Legion of Mary are leading the Rosary before Mass during the week for this special intention, all welcome around 9am. The senior Catholic archbishop of Ukraine, Archbishop Shevchuk, has said: ‘let us not only pray for peace in Ukraine, but let us pray for our enemies, for their conversion, for the conversion of Russia, as Our Lady of Fatima has requested of us.’


Secondly we can offer financial help to supply basic necessities to those who are sheltering in other countries.

The second collection for those affected by the Ukraine invasion will be sent to the Ukraine Emergency Appeal organised by Aid to the Church in Need. The total donated to date is just over £1400, including £40 for ribbons. Many thanks to everyone who has supported this important collection with such generosity. Any late donations can be sent directly to anc.org.uk

Aid to the Church in Need have organised a special emergency fund for this intention. The Catholic Church in Ukraine is a church of martyrs, in the time of Stalin thousands were killed or put in work camps.They have helped the Church to rebuild over the decades since then and they are helping still. Please make a donation through the parish, or you can leave an offering at the presbytery, or make a gift directly to acnuk.org

The Legion of Mary are leading the Rosary before Mass during the week for this special intention, all welcome around 9am.

DIVINE MERCY SUNDAY

Divine Mercy Sunday
Renewed thanks to everyone who helped in any way to make Holy Week and Easter a great celebration of our Faith. Thanks too to everyone who sent in offerings, greetings and gifts, they are much appreciated.

This Sunday marks the completion of the Easter week of Masses. We continue to celebrate Eastertide and to think about how the Resurrection of Jesus brings us joy and hope. This Sunday we hear about St Thomas, and how Jesus invites him to touch His Wounds. His faith is confirmed and he makes that famous act of faith which we often say when the Sacred Host is elevated at Mass: ’My Lord and My God.’

In more recent times Pope John Paul 11 promoted the Divine Mercy devotion which is celebrated today. The motto ’Jesus I trust in You’, which we see on the picture, is a very good short prayer for all of us to say frequently during the day, especially in times of doubt, uncertainly or fear. According to the saints, trust in God is one of the most important qualities in the life of a Christian. We can’t receive His mercy, or any of the graces He wants to give us, if we don’t trust Him. On this feast day let us pray for a great trust in God in our daily lives, that whatever comes our way, good or bad, God wants the best for us and always offers the graces we need and the knowledge that He carries our burdens with us.

Devotions at the Lady Chapel, Osmotherley: 1.30pm Rosary and Adoration, Chaplet of Divine Mercy followed by 3pm Mass and Confessions.

CAFOD WALK AGAINST HUNGER

Walk against hunger
Congratulations to Cath Coyle for completing her walks. Please give your sponsor money to her ASAP so that we can send it off to where it is needed.

THE SACRAMENT OF CONFESSION

Praying hands

Holy Week is a good time for all Catholics to think seriously about making a good Confession. Any good catholic prayerbook should give guidance on how to go to Confession. For anyone who has been away for a long time, do not be afraid to approach a priest for help.

We follow four simple steps to make a Confession:

• Examination of Conscience. Say a prayer to the Holy Spirit. Ask Him to help you to be honest with yourself and with God as you think of your sins since your last Confession. There are many guides to help based on the Ten Commandments.

• Contrition. As you think of your sins, tell God how sorry you are that you have committed these sins which have separated you from Him.

• Amendment of life. Make a firm resolution to avoid situations, people or trains of thought which have led to these sins.

• Confession. Confess your sins to a priest and do the penance. Afterwards say a prayer for the priest and to thank God for His Mercy.

• Confession is a wonderful Sacrament which has been much neglected recently. Anyone who goes to Confession regularly will tell you that it gives so much strength and encouragement to our souls even when our sins might seem routine.

ST BERNADETTE — A LIFE OF SERVICE TO GOD

St. Bernadette
News has come in that the relics of St Bernadette are coming to the Cathedral 2/3rd October as part of a national tour. This might be a good time to learn a little more about her life as a preparation.

Bernadette was the daughter of a poor miller, the first of nine children. She was a sick baby and suffered cholera and asthma in childhood. She missed a lot of school and did not learn to read and write until later in life.

Between February 11 and July 16, 1858, at the age of 14, she had a series of visions of the Virgin Mary in the nearby Massabielle grotto. Mary revealed her identity with the words “I am the Immaculate Conception” and, among other messages and affirmations, told Bernadette that a chapel should be built there.

At the time she was visited by Our Lady, her family were living in the local Workhouse (Cachot) . Despite initially not being believed and being bullied by her parents, the local clergy, and civil authorities she steadfastly defended the genuineness of these visions and remained humble.

To escape public attention, she became a boarder in the local school run by the Sisters of Charity of Nevers. In 1866 she was granted admission into the novitiate in the motherhouse at Nevers. There she completed her religious instruction and passed her remaining years in prayer and seclusion, happy and loved for her kindliness, holiness, and wit, despite almost constant sickness and pain. She died in agony on April 16th 1879, willingly accepting her great sufferings in faithful fulfillment of her “Lady’s” request for penance.

She was canonized by Pope Pius XI on December 8th, 1933. Celebration of her feast is on April 16th, the day she died, and is optional in the Roman calendar, though Lourdes is a major pilgrimage centre for those seeking healing. The chapel of the St. Gildard convent, Nevers, contains her body, which is said to be incorrupt.

Although she was born into poverty, suffered from a lack of education, and much sickness throughout her life she is a fine example of how to live with the sufferings of life and stay close to God and cheerful in his service at the same time. Her feast day is April 16th.

ST. LUKE — DOCTOR, MISSIONARY, AUTHOR

St. Luke - Doctor, Missionary, Author
We are encouraged to listen to the Word of God and to ask the Holy Spirit to guide us in living out the Gospel in our daily lives. On Sundays in ‘Ordinary Time’ we work through one of the Gospels in particular. This year we are reading from the Gospel of St Luke. Each Evangelist is addressing his words to different listeners and so emphasises different aspects of Our Lord’s teachings and actions, in order to help these varieties of people to come to know Him more.

St Luke was probably born of pagan parents in Antioch and worked as a doctor. He was converted by St Paul and became his co-worker in his missionary journeys. He wrote the Acts of the Apostles which gives a history of the Church in New Testament times. His Gospel emphasises:

God’s mercy. St Luke points out that Jesus came as a Saviour for the whole world. No-one is beyond the mercy of God. Even if they are on the margins of society, no-one is outside of His creation and His love. He came to seek out the lost.

The Humanity of Christ. St Luke records the nativity stories which we look forward to reading every Christmas. The Son of God took on human flesh and experienced all that we do, except sin. Knowing this is a source of hope to so many people.

Prayer. Many times St Luke points out that Jesus went away to pray by himself, he often spent the whole night in prayer. The apostles and disciples followed Jesus’ lead as we see in the Acts of the Apostles, joining together in prayer, especially on Sundays and to ask God’s guidance.

Healing. St Luke, having been a doctor, gives many details about the miracles of healing which Jesus did. It shows that he came to restore all God’s creation, to make it whole again. He offers that healing to everyone.

Compassion. Jesus goes out of his way to show gentleness and compassion especially to those people who would have been looked down on such as the sick and the poor. He raises their spirits when he shows everyone around that they all have dignity in the eyes of God because he made them.

As we listen to St Luke’s Gospel over the coming weeks let us ask God to help us to be more faithful to daily prayer, to experience the healing which he offers to our souls in the Sacraments, and to show the compassion we receive to those who need it most.

BAPTISM — THE GATEWAY TO THE SACRAMENTS

Baptism - the gateway to the sacraments

Baptism is called ‘the gateway’ to the Sacraments. We become Christians when we are Baptised, Original sin is washed away, we are made children of God and brothers and sisters of each other in the Church.

We also receive the gift of faith in our souls. It is sometimes described as a seed which we have to nurture so that it will germinate and grow and bear fruit. This takes a lifetime.

Recently thirty children were registered by their parents for the preparation course for First Confession and First Holy Communion. Parents, at Baptism, promise to pass on the Faith to their children by teaching them to pray each day, following the Commandments, and bringing them to Mass each Sunday.

The Gospel of John relates how Jesus went to a wedding and performed his first recorded miracle, changing water into wine. In this way he blesses marriage and makes it a Sacrament. When a Christian couple gets married they celebrate a Sacrament and receive special graces from God to be good husbands and wives, fathers and mothers. Those graces are always there being offered by God, even when we don’t live up to them.

Please pray that God will bless all married couples in the parish and help them in their efforts to pass on the Faith to their children. We pray too for those couples who are preparing for marriage this year. When Jesus changes water into wine we learn that what is essential for a stable society (marriage and family life, represented by the water) can also, with Gods help, bring joy (represented by the wine) to that family and to the wider community.

CONGRATULATIONS!

Allan and Phil Burns celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary

ALLAN AND PHIL CELEBRATE MILESTONE ANNIVERSARY

A couple from St. Andrew's Parish have celebrated their Golden wedding anniversary and have been presented with a bunch of flowers on behalf of the parish.

Allan and Phil Burns were married on December 28th, 1971 at St. Joseph's Church, Marton Road, Middlesbrough by Fr. Toner and 50 years to the day they once again stood before God in St. Andrew's Church and received a blessing from Parish Priest, Fr. Michael Sellers.

The couple met on the dance floor of the Excel Night Club "as in West Side Story" quipped Allan.


Allan's best man was Andrew Lombard while Phil's chief bridesmaid was Theresa McRae and had six bridesmaids. Their reception was at the Marton Hotel and Country Club in Marton.

And on Sunday, January 2nd Allan and Phil were presented with bunch of flowers, pictured above, at the 11.00 am Mass at St. Anne's Church, Whale Hill, Eston.

PARISH HALL
Functions and events that can now be held in the parish hall with restrictions are:

Small prayer groups/meetings;
Educational courses;
MAP asylum seekers drop in;
Wednesday evening Jive dancing classes;
Thursday afternoon bingo;
SVP 1st & 3rd Friday refreshments.


The following restrictions are in place for the protection of all people who use the hall:
• Everyone must sanitise their hands before taking their seat;
• Face coverings must be worn while walking about the hall;
• Only two people are permitted to serve refreshments from the kitchen
• Group organisers are responsible for disinfecting any tables and chairs at the end of each session
(this must not be done by the person who cleans the hall).

We reserve the right to cancel any event should any of the above restrictions not be met by the group.

Please speak to Paul Terry if you would like to hire the hall for your meetings, training or if you are just looking for some office space.
Please note: There will be no large events until further notice.

The hall will remain closed on Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

OVER ONE HUNDRED BRAVE STORM TO REMEMBER FR. JACK McKEEVER

Fr. Jack McKeever

Over a hundred parishioners and clergy braved horrendous weather to attend the memorial Mass for Fr. Jack Mckeever on Tuesday, December 7th which was celebrated by Bishop Terry. Parishioners from parishes he had served were welcomed to join together with parishioners from St. Andrew's in remembering our much loved and missed friend.

Fr. Jack passed away in James Cook University hospital following a short illness on Sunday, October 31st, the day when this year the Catholic Church celebrated the Feast of All Saints, a very fitting end to his 63 years of priesthood.

Fr John James McKeever was born in Ardee, County Louth, Ireland on 7 March 1933. He trained to be a priest in St Patrick’s Seminary, Thurles and was ordained on 15th June 1958. He came to the Middlesbrough Diocese and was Curate at St Wilfrid’s in York from 1958 to 1961; he was moved to St Pius X in Middlesbrough as Curate from 1961 to 1968. He was then moved to Our Lady and St Peters in Bridlington as Curate from 1968 to 1973. In 1974 he was appointed as Parish Priest to the Sacred Heart Church in Howden and from 1981 to 1996 he became Parish Priest at St Gabriel’s in Ormesby, Middlesbrough.

The last parish he served was Ss. Joseph and Cuthbert in Loftus as Parish Priest from 1996 retiring in 2010. He retired with his long serving housekeeper Phil Oliver, first moving to Ormesby where Phil had a house. However, they struggled in the bad winter and icey roads on the estate up Ormesby Bank so they both moved to Normanby after Fr. Jack bought a property there. In retirement he was active in support of the local priests and parishes, especially here at St. Andrew's where we have all been grateful for his good humoured and unwavering help, support and encouragement.

He was an avid sports fan and used to be a season ticket holder for The Boro at Ayresome Park and the Riverside Stadium. However, his first love was horse racing and in his younger years used to travel all over the country to see the big races, The Cheltenham Gold Cup, Royal Ascot, The Derby at Epsom and the York Ebor. In old age he never lost his love of the sport but had to be content with having a flutter at the local betting shop and watching it on the television.

Fr. Jack McKeever celebrates his Dianmond Jubilee with his fellow priests

In 2018 St. Andrew's Parish had the great honour of organising and hosting Fr. Jack's Diamond Jubilee, pictured above, which was attended by many parishioners from some of the parishes he had served and many of his fellow priests.

Fr McKeever’s housekeeper, Philomena Oliver sadly died last year. Since then Frs health had declined quite rapidly. However, in the last year, he had come to rely on, and appreciate, the practical help and support of a number of parishioners from St. Andrew's. We would like to thank them for their care and support, and to thank everyone who has kept Fr McKeever in their prayers.

At the time of his death he had spent 63 years a priest including the last 12 years helping at St. Andrew's Parish.

As we pray for Fr McKeever’s soul let us thank God for his life’s work as a priest. Could we also pray for his brothers and sisters and wider family in Ireland.

Fr. Jack's funeral was held in Ireland on Monday, November 15th at 12 noon. You can view it by clicking the link below::

Our photos show (top) Fr. Jack celebrating Mass in St. Andrew's Church; and celebrating the Mass for his Diamond Jubilee with former Parish Priests Canon Edmond Gubbins (left) and Canon Michael Loughlin. Photographs by Paul Terry.

FIRST HOLY COMMUNIONS

Congratulations to the eleven children who have received their First Holy Communion this weekend. Let us pray that they and their families will grow in faith each day. Many thanks to the catechists who have patiently guided the children through the course of teachings, despite the interruption of the pandemic. The parents of children in years 4 and 5 will be invited to apply for the course in January.

SACRAMENTS
Now that we have a public daily Mass available in the parish, and also an extra Sunday Mass at St Anne’s we can highlight other Sacraments.

Baptism and Marriage – a number of enquiries came in during the last year and could not take place due to a lockdown or numbers being restricted. There are now no restrictions on numbers attending Baptisms or Marriages so I am happy to discuss this with any couple who is willing to make the necessary commitment to Sunday Mass attendance and bringing the child up in the Catholic Faith when a Baptism is requested.

Confirmation – as yet we have not been given a date for the next Confirmation but I will be glad to see any young person who was due to be confirmed before the lockdown and begin the preparation.

Home Visits we are currently limited to one visit per morning and the same in an afternoon. We hope to compile an up to date list of the housebound in the parish and those who would like to receive Holy Communion in the next few weeks. Please let me have the details of anyone you know. I am always available for the Sacrament of the Sick for those who are dying within the parish. If a priest is needed in the hospital it is best to ask the ward to page the on-call Catholic chaplain.

DEATH OF VERY FIRST CURATE OF ST ANDREW'S PARISH

Monsignor

Mgr Kilbane
Monsignor Seamus Kilbane, the first priest to serve as a curate at the newly opened St Andrew's Parish, died peacefully during the early hours of Monday morning, July 12th. He was 91. He was a resident at the Holy Name Care Home in Hull.

Monsignor Kilbane was born in Mountbellow, County Galway and attended St Patrick’s Seminary in Thurles. He was ordained priest on June 10th 1956. He arrived at St. Andrew's to assist the newly appointed Parish Priest Fr. Patrick Bluett in 1962. In the photo above Fr. Kilbane is sat at the head of the table with the boys section of the Young Christian Workers at a meeting in the parish hall in 1963.

On Saturday, February 23rd he was the celebrant of the very first wedding at St. Andrew's Parish which was between Anthony Paul Whitehead of Dormanstown and Kathleen Mary Meed from Normanby.

He was moved on in 1967 and went on to serve in a number of parishes throughout the diocese. He retired from his final parish of Leyburn and Ulshaw Bridge in September 2002 after 7 years and retired in York after giving 46 years of service to the Diocese of Middlesbrough. At the time of his retirement, the Bishop of Middlesbrough, The Rt Rev. John Crowley praised Mgr Kilbane for his 46 years of priestly service and his work throughout the Middlesbrough diocese and wished him a happy retirement at his new home in York.

Monsignor Kilbane was laid to rest in the Victorian Cemetery, Cemetery Road, York following Requiem Mass in St George’s Church on Friday, July 23rd 2021, at 11am. RIP.

 
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