Catholic Pic July 2019

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Issue 178 July 2019


Archdiocesan School Awards 2019 INSIDE THIS ISSUE:

Umbrellas in Seaforth

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contents Issue 178 July 2019

Welcome This month we pay tribute to the work of our Catholic schools as we cover the annual Archdiocesan School Awards ceremony which took place at the end of May. Each year it offers us an opportunity to say thank you to all the people: pupils, staff and governors, who work in our schools.


The Lourdes Pilgrimage begins on Friday 19 July with the pilgrims returning on Friday 26 July. The Lourdes Departure Mass will be celebrated in the Metropolitan Cathedral at 5.00 pm on Sunday 14 July; all are welcome to attend and pray for our pilgrims as they travel in our name to Lourdes. As July begins, we look forward to the ordinations which are to take place in the archdiocese. On Saturday 13 July Archbishop Malcolm will ordain Thomas Clarke to the priesthood at St Charles church in Aigburth. On the previous Sunday, 7 July, he will ordain Gergely Juhasz, Peter Mawtus, Michael Moffatt and Paul Rooney to the permanent diaconate in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King at 3.00 pm. In these final days of preparation, we pray for all the ordinands as they look forward to their ministry among us.

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From the Archbishop’s Desk The summer months are often the time when different kinds of awards ceremonies take place. I am particularly interested in two schemes that show off our young people. Recently I attended the Archdiocesan Schools Awards Day which spotlight our Catholic schools, staff and pupils. This was a very upbeat occasion showing clearly the way that Catholic education serves our young people well. This occasion celebrated every aspect of school life and in particular the way our schools have developed a care for the wider community. The Faith in Action awards are also presented at this time of year. These awards to individuals are often likened to the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme as it is offered at various levels culminating in a gold award. The participant has to show their commitment to their faith through worship, service and commitment. It involves both parishes and schools and is eagerly sought after by our young people. Over 1500 school students take part in this scheme. As well as taking pride in their achievements I am also quietly confident that God is working through our youngsters to ensure a better future for all. We often criticise them for not going to church as often as we would like; and I know that can be depressing for those older people like me. On the other hand, I see energy and life in abundance in our youth. If you don’t believe me, then read on in this edition of the ‘Pic’, or come to Lourdes on our Archdiocesan Pilgrimage this month and join the 500 young people who will certainly change your mind. Most Rev Malcolm McMahon OP Archbishop of Liverpool Editor Peter Heneghan

Copy deadline August 2019 Monday 8 July 2019

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Main Feature A celebration of our schools


News From around the Archdiocese

12 Animate ‘Twelve of the best months of my life’ 14 Sunday Reflections Liturgy and Life 15 Nugent News #Nugent Proud 16 What’s On Whats happening in the Archdiocese 19 Profile Paul Loughran Junior Head teacher of the Year 20 Education News From around the Archdiocese 25 Cathedral Record A busy year 26 Pic Extras Mums the word News from the KSC 28 Pic Life Why kindness can boost our mental health 30 Justice and Peace Why do Justice and Peace organisations use social media?

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A celebration of our schools The 2019 Archdiocese of Liverpool School awards provided an opportunity to recognise a wide range of achievements. By Simon Hart ‘Celebrating success within schools’ is the tagline of the Archdiocese of Liverpool School awards – and to understand their appeal, it is significant to note the concept of success that defines them. These are awards that cover achievements across 12 different categories – from Spirituality and Sports to Young Entrepreneur and Inspirational Teacher – and for Tim Warren, the diocesan director of schools and colleges, this broad spread of categories explains the popularity of an event established in 2017. ‘The awards celebrate lots of wonderful things going on in our schools which aren’t celebrated through other things like Ofsted inspections,’ he said. ‘There’s a full range of awards and the event itself gives joy to all the participants – from primary school kids right through to governors who’ve been around for many years. As a family of schools, you want to celebrate those things together.’ The 2019 event took place at the Royal Liver Building on 21 May and featured 160 nominations, with 25 different schools included on the eventual shortlists. The winners in each category, as per previous years, were decided by a panel of judges – another positive, according to Tim Warren, who said: ‘The unique thing is there isn’t a checklist against which they are judged.’ This year’s recipient of the School of the Year prize was St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School, Leigh – a school which has overcome considerable challenges since the merger of St Gabriel’s and the Higher Folds Community Primary School 4

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into a combined school based on the Higher Folds site. ‘They’ve had to overcome some very big issues to become a really good school,’ said Tim Warren. ‘That’s what came through to the judges – the work that’s gone into making it what it is today is phenomenal.’ Cathie Williams, head teacher of St Gabriel’s, explained: ‘We’re a Catholic school serving the community and everything we do is inclusive for all children irrespective of faith and background. We have a 35 per cent Catholic intake and over the last seven years that I’ve been head, we’ve brought two schools from two separate sites on to one and established a really good positive ethos. ‘We weren’t expecting to win but it’s wonderful we’ve been recognised all over the archdiocese. First and foremost, it’s recognition of all the hard work and dedication of the staff and governors.’ St Gabriel’s has gone from ‘Requires Improvement’ to ‘Good’ in the eyes of Ofsted’s inspectors and there are manifold examples to illustrate the progress of a school now in the top 10 per cent for results nationally. One is the Gold School Games Mark award granted for its sports provision and after-school clubs, with an increased number of children who have become volunteer coaches and the well-established school sports council. Another is the Junior Languages award received for the quality of Spanish teaching from Year 2 upwards. Cathie added: “Some children begin school 18 months to two years below where they should be in terms of understanding, communication, speaking and listening so we buy in specialist support and enrich the curriculum with

“We weren’t expecting to win but it’s wonderful we’ve been recognised all over the archdiocese” numerous visits and visitors to broaden life experiences. We work in an area of significant deprivation, but we want to give children the best start and overcome barriers to learning so that by the time they leave St Gabriel’s they’ve made excellent progress to achieve national standards or above.’ St Gabriel’s was far from the only school celebrating at the awards event on 21 May, which was hosted by Leanne Campbell, the Radio City breakfast show presenter, and featured music from the St John Rigby Concert Band. ‘It was an absolute privilege to be there to celebrate all that is good in Catholic schools without mention of such words as Ofsted,’ said Paul Loughran of St Michael’s Catholic Primary school, Halton, who left the Liver Building with the Primary Head Teacher prize. His school is noted for its community engagement work, including a ‘Random Acts of Kindness’ project begun this past year. ‘We’d take groups of children each week and drive them around in a car with gifts of flowers, chocolates and little calling cards form the school and they’d decide who they’d want to stop – whether it be an elderly person, somebody pushing a pram, a man in a wheelchair,’ he explained. Paul’s counterpart in the Secondary Head Teacher category was Tracey Greenough, rewarded for her work at the Academy of St Francis of Assisi, Liverpool, while the winner of the Inspirational Teacher prize was Teresa McCann, subject leader for Religious Education and Community Cohesion at St Bede’s Catholic Junior School, Halton – a school she once attended as a pupil. The youngest award winner was 15year-old Joshua Lowe from All Hallows Catholic High school in Penwortham, who collected the Young Entrepreneur prize. Aged 12 he developed a piece of software called Edublocks, a visual tool designed to help children learn computer coding and which is now

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used in more than 100 countries. ‘Josh is a remarkable young man,’ said his head teacher, Chris Horrocks. ‘Google flew him out earlier this year to Silicon Valley where he presented to a roomful of adults about the product. There’s no profit involved – he made the decision at 11 that he didn’t want it to be profit-making.’ If that were not enough, he voluntarily operates a monthly code club at the Harris Museum in Preston. Of the other winners, Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School, Wigan earned the Spirituality award for a push to put spirituality at the heart of its activities – meaning acknowledging non-material aspects of life, with a focus on personal insight, values, meaning and purpose. Jo Costello, inclusion manager at Faith Primary School, Liverpool collected the Inclusion award, having helped her school earn the IQM (Inclusion Quality Mark) Centre of Excellence Status awarded to only around 200 schools across the whole of the UK.

The Contribution to the Community award went to the Warrington Cluster of Primary Headteachers for a shared project offering support and networking opportunities in the areas of leadership and management activities in Catholic primary schools in Warrington. The art department at De La Salle High School, St Helens won the Creative team project for their work in helping pupils explore creative possibilities. As if to illustrate the point, eight pupils recently had their work selected for the St Helens Youth Open Art Exhibition at the World of Glass museum. St Paschal Baylon Catholic Primary school, Liverpool earned the Sports Achievement award after a year where 179 children represented the school in a sporting capacity. Together they registered a variety of triumphs: Matball city champions; Inter-School Girls’ Cross Country champions; Merseyside Police Primary Football champions; Liverpool Catholic Schools’ Athletics champions;

and Liverpool City Swimming champions for both boys and girls. It was not just a celebration of teachers and pupils. The Inspirational School Support prize went to Mike Poole, premises officer at St Joseph the Worker Catholic Primary School, Knowsley. This was a fitting accolade ahead of his upcoming retirement from a school where – to quote a colleague – ‘he is a mentor, coach, guide, on occasion a dinner lady and sometimes Father Christmas!’ Long service was also recognised with the award of the Governing Body prize to St Monica’s Catholic Primary School, Sefton – a school where several governors have served more than 30 years, notably George Foster, chair of governors for the last 23 years.

“It was not just a celebration of teachers and pupils” Catholic Pictorial


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2019 awards in full School of the year Winner: St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School, Leigh Also shortlisted: St Paschal Baylon, Catholic Primary School, Liverpool; Academy of St Francis of Assisi, Liverpool Secondary head teacher Winner: Tracey Greenough, Academy of St Francis of Assisi, Liverpool Also shortlisted: Tim Alderman, St Julie’s Catholic High School, Liverpool; Chris Horrocks, St Bede’s Catholic High School, Lancashire/St Edmund Arrowsmith Catholic High School, Knowsley Junior head teacher Winner: Paul Loughran, St Michael’s Catholic Primary School, Halton Also shortlisted: Matt White, Much Woolton Catholic Primary School, Liverpool; Simon Lawman, St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, Withnell, Lancashire Governing body of the year Winner: St Monica’s Catholic Primary School, Sefton Also shortlisted: Faith Primary School, Liverpool; St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School, Wigan Inspirational teacher of the year Winner: Teresa McCann, St Bede’s Catholic Junior School, Halton Also shortlisted: Claire Markey, St John Bosco Arts College, Liverpool; Elizabeth Connor, Carmel College, St Helens Inspirational school support Winner: Mike Poole, Premises Officer, St Joseph the Worker Catholic Primary School, Knowsley Also shortlisted: Dot Cunningham, Finance Officer, Faith Primary School, Liverpool; Pauline Guthrun, Teaching Assistant, St William’s Catholic Primary School, Wigan


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Inclusion Winner: Jo Costello, Inclusion Manager, Faith Primary School, Liverpool Also shortlisted: Jayne McCann and Claire Bullock, SENCOs, De La Salle High School, St Helens; Cathie Williams, Head teacher, St Gabriel’s Catholic Primary School, Wigan Young entrepreneur Winner: Joshua Lowe, All Hallows Catholic High School, Penwortham, Lancashire Also shortlisted: Jake Glennon, Maricourt Catholic High School, Sefton; Ava Wall, St Peter and St Paul Catholic Primary School, St Helens Sports Winner: St Paschal Baylon Catholic Primary School, Liverpool Also shortlisted: St Peter’s Catholic High School, Wigan, Y11 Rugby Team; St Peter and St Paul Catholic Primary School, St Helens, Y4 Rugby Team Creative team project (secondary) Winner: De La Salle High School, St Helens Also shortlisted: Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Engineering College, Lancashire; Sacred Heart Catholic College, Sefton Contribution Community Winner: Warrington Cluster of Primary Headteachers Also shortlisted: St Michael’s Catholic Primary School, Halton; St Benedict’s Catholic Primary School, Sefton Spirituality Winner: Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School, Wigan Also shortlisted: Sacred Heart Catholic College, Sefton; St Anne’s Catholic Primary School, Liverpool

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News diary If you’ve got any news from your parish that you’d like featured e-mail us with the details at:

Umbrella Project comes to Star of the Sea Church Our Lady, Star of the Sea, church in Seaforth took part in celebrating Neuro-diversity week in May by suspending umbrellas from the ceiling of the church entrance.

These umbrellas are part of the Umbrella Project run by the ADHD Foundation to celebrate the unique gifts of all children. The goal behind this initiative is to raise awareness and understanding,

encouraging discussion around conditions such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and autism. Colourful umbrellas have been suspended in front of Bluecoat Chambers in the City Centre in previous years and proved very popular with many people due to the message of celebrating neuro-diversity and adding a lovely colourful backdrop to the scenery around us. This year the Umbrella Project has proved so popular that many schools across Merseyside and beyond signed up to take part. Dr Tony Lloyd, Chief Executive of the ADHD Foundation said, ‘the Umbrella symbolises Neurodiversity: the many learning differences that we see as part of the rich diversity of humanity. 1 in 5 human beings have either Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, ADHD, Autism or Dyscalculia; they are not “errors of genetics”. We all belong; we are all of equal value as God’s children. It is truly wonderful to see the parish and school of Our Lady, Star of the Sea join in celebrating the intelligence, ability and employability of our neuro-diverse children and indeed adults. The umbrella displays are beautiful.’ Kenny Lawler, Pastoral Associate said ‘We have umbrellas in Star of the Sea church as well as in the school hall and they all have messages written on them from the school children, telling us about their unique gifts or superpowers. Let's enjoy, welcome and celebrate people of all abilities and the gifts we all have within us, which makes us all unique.’ Parish Priest, Father Dominic Curran said, ‘We’re celebrating Neuro-diversity week and how each of us is wonderfully made. Great to have some of our school children share their gifts with us. What are your unique gifts?’

City Centre May Procession 180 people took part in the Missionaries of Charity procession at the end of May walking through Liverpool City Centre from Seel Street to the Blessed Sacrament Shrine. The sisters were grateful to everyone who helped organise the walk and those who took part.

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news diary Excellence in business tourism The team from the Conference Centre at LACE won the Excellence in Business Tourism award, one of 19 accolades handed out at Liverpool Cathedral as the landmark played host to the Liverpool City Region Tourism Awards 2019. The award was presented by television presenter and cook Andi Oliver. Centre manager, Nicola Hitchen said, ‘We are absolutely thrilled to have won this award. We are committed to continuous growth and development in an everchanging and demanding industry. This award is testament to the hard work and dedication of our amazing team who deliver the finest level of service to our clients. We would like to thank our loyal, long-standing customers who are at the heart of everything we do. ‘A fantastic evening was had by all and it was a fitting celebration. The award has pride of place in our office and we are looking forward to embracing the future and to continue to go from strength to strength.’ The Centre is open for lunch Monday to Friday from 12.00 noon to 2.00 pm. Please ring the conference team on 0151 522 1002 for availability and bookings.

May Crowning in Ramsey

Over twenty Filipino and Manx children took part in the ‘May Crowning’ at Our Lady, Star of the Sea, and St Maughold in Ramsey on the Isle of Man. They carried arches of flowers and letters spelling ‘Ave Maria’ while Kyra Hughes had the honour of crowning the statue of Our Lady. 8

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news diary

It just isn’t rounders by Neil Sayer Archdiocesan Archivist Pope Francis approves of sport, as a participatory, competitive and unifying field of human endeavour. His views on baseball specifically aren’t known. You may not think very highly of it, you might even dismiss it as an American pastime, as ‘rounders with hats’, but within living memory it was popular enough in Liverpool for there to be trophies and leagues with many teams formed of enthusiastic youths and men. One of them is illustrated here, St Cuthbert’s boys’ team which won the Walker Challenge Cup in 1949, for the third time. The boys are pictured with Father Michael Horan, the parish priest, and two unidentified men who probably coached the team. The parish was based around Prescot Road in Liverpool, which presumably gave easy access for match practice in Newsham Park. As I did at first, you may now be putting this down as a legacy of the Second World War, when the presence of American servicemen at local bases such as Burtonwood – the largest US Air Force airfield in Europe – could have had an influence on the local population, like chewing gum or GI brides. Not so,

however. The roots of baseball in Liverpool go back almost a century. Playing fields in Everton seem to have been a natural breeding ground for talent. The Archdiocese rented out land in Lower Breck Road for the playing of baseball in the early 1920s. Goodison Park itself, the home of Everton FC, was actually used for baseball matches, and they attracted decent crowds. The attendance may have been helped by the fact that Everton legend,

striker William ‘Dixie’ Dean, played and promoted the sport in the 1930s. He was encouraged to do so by John Moores, who obviously didn’t have enough to do creating his pools empire and mail order business, and established Liverpool’s first baseball league in 1933. So if you watched the American Major League Baseball sides in action in London recently, you might be interested to know that this sporting import has a venerable history on this side of the Atlantic.

Cafod shop to reopen The Cafod shop on St Johns Road, Waterloo which had to close last Christmas due to a shortage of volunteers is set to be officially reopened on Wednesday 17 July by Bishop Tom Williams. Renovation work has been taking place on the building and a group will be helping to set the shop up in the days before the launch. The shop originally opened in 1992 and to date has raised nearly £800,000 towards the work of Cafod. It is the only shop in the country dedicated to raising funds and spreading the word for the charity. More volunteers are still needed to help, even if only for a couple of hours once a week or every two weeks. Basic training will be given. Anyone who is willing to help in any way please contact Pat Murphy Tel: 0151 931 5778.

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news diary Merciful accompaniment by Helen Jones, Pastoral Associate in South Liverpool Mercy was at the heart of the workshop ‘How do we Accompany People?’ given by Bill Huebsch at St Joseph’s, Wrightington and LACE in May. We were invited to reflect on our dreams of the Church, which linked to Synod 2020, and as we shared our thoughts, the unifying hope was of a truly merciful Church that reached out to all. Bill’s presentation emphasised the mercy that embodied the early church structure, founded on Jesus’ personal ministry. This mercy is at the core of Pope Francis’ approach to Vatican II teachings, his pastoral outlook and has accompaniment as the essential component. In the Joy of Love (Amoris Laetitia) the emphasis on mercy for the weakest is clear ‘… the Church’s task is often that of a field hospital’; ‘the Church must accompany with attention and care the weakest of her children’ Joy of Love 291. In our own parishes we may be able to identify two distinct groups named by Pope Francis as the regulars (married/single people, seeking sacraments, volunteering etc) and irregulars (divorced, same sex couples, remarried without annulment, civil unions, others etc) with irregulars making up

New Catholics from across the archdiocese gathered at LACE to celebrate with those from their parishes who had accompanied them on their journey of Christian Initiation writes Veronica Murphy. On the relatively new Feast of Lord Jesus Christ the Eternal High Priest, we were all encouraged to accept the hand that God offers to us through the mediation of Jesus. Father Matthew Nunes, who presided in place of the Archbishop who was unable to be with us this year, both affirmed and challenged the new Catholics. He firstly affirmed them in their decision to accept God’s call to become full members of the Catholic Church and then challenged them to persevere on this journey and to find ways of becoming involved in the mission of their parish communities to share in Christ’s mission of building God’s Kingdom on earth. 10

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about 40% of the church population. Often the irregulars feel excluded, do not attend Church consistently and can fall away. Pope Francis asks that each irregular case be looked at and discerned with an emphasis on mercy. Accompanying those who are searching, in a spirit of mercy, compassion and love can enable God’s voice to be heard: ‘Our conscience is our most secret core and our sanctuary. There we are alone with God whose voice echoes in our depths.’ CCC 1776. It is this conscience that as accompanists we strive to support the seeker in discerning. For some who may be called to be accompanists, Bill gave some guidelines: accompanists need to be available, to invite a story to be told, to deeply listen, to gently question, to help discern God’s voice and to help make a decision, it may take a while but it is all in God’s time. Each of us is called by God in unique and sacred ways. As we journey

together towards Synod 2020, perhaps we can reflect on our own call to pastoral ministry and strive to become communities of sacred space, communities of accompanists with all of us discerning God’s voice in the depths of our conscience.

Mass with new Catholics

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news diary Synod Listening around the Archdiocese

Question Time in Chorley by Father Philip Inch and Matt Jeziorski Our Synod Listening is in full swing around the Archdiocese and Synod Members are finding a whole array of creative and inspirational ways of inviting as many people as possible to reflect on and respond to our Synod Questions. In St John’s, Kirkdale, a whole programme of Synod activities is underway including adoration, Synod Listening, and days when the Church will be open and prayer stations available to encourage reflection on the Synod Questions. At Holy Rosary in Aintree Village the Parish Member (Kathy) and the Pastoral Area Member (Faye) are holding a series of open events, come along and have your say. The priests and the religious of the Archdiocese have been holding their own listening events. For the priests an invitation was made to come to one of six afternoons at St Joseph’s in Wrightington. In their efforts to ensure we engage with as wide a constituency as possible we have seen flyers being displayed around Ainsdale, including one in a Bike Shop/Café advertising the Synod. The same parishes, Sacred Heart and St John Stone, held a Synod Listening for their little

church with the children thinking about some of the things they would like to say to the Church. Schools have been heavily involved too with listening taking place with children, staff, governors, or parents in various school communities. At St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Penketh the school held a Mission Day on the theme of Synod 2020 during which the children had the opportunity to reflect on the sort of Church they want to grow up into. Other parishes, including St John Vianney in Halewood, have been using our Easter reflections as a way of inviting the whole Sunday congregation to respond to the four questions over successive weekends. Elsewhere Synod Members are making paper surveys available for those who are unable to attend meetings or access the online survey.

In preparation for the local listening the Chorley Pastoral Area held a Question Time event where a panel of Father Graeme Dunne (Parish Priest), Father Francis Marsden (Dean), Kate Wilkinson (School Chaplain), Canon Cynthia Dowdle (Anglican Chaplain to Liverpool Hope University), and Dominic Murphy (Synod Member for Chorley representing young people) answered questions for over two hours from an audience of nearly 90 people. Many Members are reaching out to Care Homes and our Members from Nugent have produced an easy to read leaflet to support this work, particularly where some residents may have dementia. Members are doing much to reach out to the margins and those who are often overlooked; listening is being done in prisons, hospitals, and at various projects that serve the most vulnerable in our communities. These are just a handful of the many creative and brilliant ways in which Synod Members are listening to the entire community of the Archdiocese and involving as many people as possible in Synod 2020. Please do let the Synod Office know what you are doing in your parishes and Pastoral Areas, share things on Social Media, and celebrate great projects that are happening locally as we undertake this great task of listening. Remember the on-line survey closes on 30 June and any emailed Synod listening records have to be at the Synod Office by 16 July. The Synod Working Group are spending three days in prayer and reflection from 15-17 August as we discern the themes that will emerge from all that has been said, please pray for us.

Apology Mersey Mirror, the publisher of the Catholic Pic, would like to apologise for the insert that appeared in the June issue of the magazine. We are aware that the content of the insert may of raised concerns. We would like to stress that these beliefs and messages are not supported by the company or the team behind the publication. We are extremely sorry for any upset that this piece of material may of caused.

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youth ministry

‘Twelve of the best months of my life’ Luke Barton reflects on a memorable year with the Animate Youth Ministries team. Twelve months ago, I was preparing to go to university and was just waiting to get my results so I could confirm my place. Now, I’m making the same preparations all over again. The reason why? While in Lourdes last summer, a friend suggested to me that I join the Animate team, and I have no reservations in saying it has been an amazing year. At first, I wasn’t too sure what to expect. I’d never really been part of a close-knit community before, and I wasn’t really the most sociable of people, but from the first night in Lowe House I knew I had made the right decision. Sitting around the fire with the people I’d be spending a year of my life with, I felt welcomed. Animate has offered me so many

amazing things, and the time I’ve spent here has had a massive impact on my life. Every week, we’ve spent time together as a community and shared different activities – be it simply playing a few games in the lounge or going to Knowsley Safari Park, these few hours every week have really helped me to come out of my shell and get to know the people around me. It’s not just the community side of things, either; being at Animate has really helped me to grow in my faith. Engaging in more traditional styles of prayer, such as the Divine Office and Lectio Divina, has really helped me to understand my faith a lot more and

learn about different aspects of Catholicism. A motivating factor has been the work we do with young people, as I’ve picked apart different pieces of scripture to help me understand better the meaning behind each passage before then explaining it to others. The biggest impact that Animate has had is on my personal prayer life. Before I joined the team, I’d struggled with praying for my own intentions, and I felt like this was affecting my relationship with God. Being at Animate, however, has offered me many chances to strengthen my personal prayer. Not only has this helped me to pray in private, but it has also helped me with my ability to plan and prepare communal prayers, as well as giving me the confidence to lead prayers in group situations. The last 12 months have been some of the best I’ve ever had. From working with young people and watching them grow in their faith to going on pilgrimage to Italy and travelling on my own faith journey, I have no regrets about joining the Animate team. It has helped me grow as a person, as a member of community, but most importantly, it has helped me grow as a Catholic. Dates for the Diary • Alpha – Tuesday 2 July (6-8pm) at the Life and Soul Café, Lowe House, 99 Crab St, St Helens, WA10 2BE A chance to learn more about your faith and meet other young people. Come along for a video and discussion – and a bite to eat afterwards. • Lourdes Departure Mass – Sunday 7 July (6.30pm) at St Mary’s Church, Lowe House.


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sunday reflections On a liturgical note July is often a time for drawing things to a close and moving on – it may be from one school to another, university to work (if you’re lucky!) or even new houses or new countries. Whatever the ‘pilgrimage’ in our own lives, one thing we certainly need is the gift of wisdom, so that we can travel the path set out for us with a certain integrity and surety. That is not to say that everything will be clear-cut and that we will not sometimes travel into a cul-de-sac, but the advice and the guidance of others on a journey is essential – those who have trodden the path ahead of us serve as a guide for our own journeying. On 25 July we keep the Feast of Saint James, the Apostle – a Saint linked to this idea of journeying to the great pilgrimage destination in northern Spain of Compostela Those who walk the ‘camino’ or way leading to Compostela tell tales of how it profoundly changes their outlook on others – and also their understanding of themselves. They are put into a position where the pilgrimage and the

Sunday thoughts Before I came to the Isle of Man nearly four years ago, I assumed the island was populated by native Manx residents with a few extra British and Irish people. But at Mass every Sunday I meet parishioners from every nation on earth. It’s good to have our assumptions overturned. As I write this, the annual TT motorcycle races are under way. The weather this year has been atrocious. Cloud cover on the mountain course has meant that injured riders can’t be safely airlifted by helicopter to Noble’s Hospital for emergency treatment. When this happens, practice sessions have to be curtailed and races postponed. The island hosts over 40,000 visitors for the TT (to put that in perspective, the permanent population is only 85,000). Most of the visitors are bikers and they bring their bikes with them. I derive as much satisfaction

Canon Philip Gillespie

friendships (and hardships) endured throw together people from very different backgrounds and personalities united by one common aim – and who will do all they can to assist and make easier the journey for their fellow travellers. If you are looking for a little summer reading, you may want to look for ‘ To the Field of Stars’ by Kevin A Codd – the story of a priest’s journey to the Shrine of Saint James which he undertook as part of a sabbatical. Of course, we are often referred to as a ‘pilgrim Church on earth’ – and ideally out of the diversity of our backgrounds and personalities comes a unity and a common purpose: to do all we can to help each other in the search for God’s will and purpose in our lives. Wherever you are journeying over these next weeks, I hope you travel in safety and find rest and refreshment – in whatever form that is needed!

Mgr John Devine OBE

from looking at the variety of bikes and reading their number plates as I do from watching the racing itself. Many might assume that an influx of bikers would spell trouble for the island. That isn’t the case. Contrary to the stereotype, bikers aren’t hooligans. When they take off their helmets and peel off their leathers you discover that they are respectful, courteous and considerate visitors. The Manx people love them. There are people on the island who accommodate the same bikers every year in their own homes. They consider them to be family friends. Many more bikers live under canvas. This year the campsites are awash and so they fill the bars and cafes. When you welcome the stranger, you welcome an angel in disguise.

Weekly Reflections are on the Archdiocesan website at 14

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To see with the eyes of faith Back in 1943 my aunty May, who was two years older than my mum, contracted TB. Apparently May was a vivacious young woman whose love of life was contagious. Everyone in the area knew May French. She spent her weekends dancing and laughing and during the week she worked in the local Post Office and was always trying to help the people whose lives were devastated by the war. When she died, my nana was devastated and my mum and her brother for years were hardly able to mention May’s name without breaking down. However, my mum would often say in the midst of her tears, ‘I don’t know why I’m crying, I know that May is alive.’ The eyes of faith help us to see differently than others. I’m told there are two words in Greek that mean to see. The first is ‘theorein’, which means to see with your physical eyes, and the second is ‘horan’, which means to perceive. In chapter 16 of John’s Gospel both Greek words are used. It’s almost as though a journey has to be made where the disciples are invited to be willing to look beyond physical matter and trust that Jesus is with them, to perceive his presence. So, what are we challenged to see? It is to see beyond that which is around us. Are we able to look at the devastation that death brings and say all will be well? Are we able to look at our illnesses and wonder how God is at work? Are we able to look at a brother or sister and see beyond the bad temper or the poor behaviour or the rudeness, and see the presence of God? Are we able to look beyond the paedophile or the murderer and see the presence of God? Can we look at the asylum-seeker and the refugee and see his or her fear, and know that God is there? Dare we open our eyes and perceive the presence of God in everything? I say ‘dare we’ because in many senses to see beyond means we have to change and most of us don’t want to change. To see beyond means our hearts have to become compassionate, our lives have to be broken. To see beyond means we have to give up our judgemental attitudes and the way we condemn our brothers and sisters. It means we have to think of others before ourselves. Dare we take the risk to do that? You know that with everything we do to another person, we’re doing it to the God who lives within them. If only we realised it. You see, belief in Jesus is not just about nice feelings. It radically challenges who we are and how we live. The challenge is to wake up and smell the coffee. It’s never easy to follow the Jesus way; but, as Jesus says, ‘Be brave, I have conquered the world’ Fr Chris Thomas

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Good Shepherd appeal 2019 Normandie Wragg Chief Executive Nugent

#NugentProud Dancing is my hobby, it provides me with fun physical exercise and I truly enjoy the people that I see, week on week, in both lessons and whilst socialising. Recently, whilst on leave, I was volunteering my time in Valencia. I was there for a continuing professional development course, on how to teach community based dancing.

This year’s Good Shepherd Appeal has been inspiring school students across the region to help raise funds for Nugent under the theme, ‘The Good Samaritan: Join the journey, walk in faith’. At the very heart of Nugent, we believe that every person is treated with love, respect and dignity. The Good Shepherd Appeal enables schools and parishes to work alongside us and actively engage young people to work together to help us to continue the loving and essential work started in our Archdiocese by Father Nugent. Our team has been out visiting schools to speak at assemblies and have spoken to over 6,000 primary, junior and senior students about the Good Shepherd Appeal to encourage them to get involved and think of ideas for events and activities to raise funds. Students at all the schools taking part have really used their imagination and come up with some amazing ideas that their friends and staff can take part in, from an Easter Bonnet parade, a spring fair, Nugent Cookie sales, weekly Good Shepherd market, and a Bunny Hop, to name a few. We have currently received over £11,000 from these fantastic and fun projects, events and activities organised by the students and staff across 27 schools in the Archdiocese, which is amazing. Our Good Shepherd masses took place in June with over 30 schools at the Cathedral and over 1,000 people attending with 500 attending the mass at Leyland. A big thank you to all the schools involved from everyone at Nugent, we are overwhelmed by your inspiring ideas and by the hard work you have all put in.

My session, during this week, was about business skills and sustainability in relation to dance communities. In our conversations, during the presentation and during the week, building and developing communities became a golden thread conversation. Groups of people work to support each other more, where there is a sense of community, fellowship, belonging and understanding. It is when there is coproduction of community that more people make a decision to become involved and to contribute. At Nugent we are co-developing community food markets where people can come together, in fellowship, to eat, share and support each other. We also had a WeAreNugent week (June 23rd to 30th) with many events where our staff and volunteers shared with each other their stories weaved into the experience of working for a charity that they are proud of. I saw a hashtag on social media whilst I was away. It read #NugentProud. How wonderful. During the week I made a commitment to volunteer my time to get to know our teams even better and share in that community pride. If you would like to join in our future activities, please see our website: Normandie Wragg Chief Executive Officer Nugent

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what’s on Sunday 30 June Solemnity of St Peter and St Paul, Apostles ‘Celebrate the Child’, Annual Family Celebration Mass 3.00 pm at St Peter and St Paul Catholic College, Highfield Road, Widnes, WA8 7DW, preceded by a picnic in the grounds and activities to prepare for Mass from 1.00 pm. Details: Email: or Tel: 0151 522 1043. July 2019 Tuesday 2 July Alpha 6.00 pm at the Life and Soul Café, Lowe House, 99 Crab St, St Helens, WA10 2BE. A chance to learn more about your faith and meet other young people. Chat and discussion; with food after and social time. Thursday 4 July Classical Guitar Concert by John O’Connell 1.00-2.00 pm in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King. Admission free. Saturday 6 July ‘The Lark Ascending’ Concert Music by Vaughan Williams, Delius, Burgoyne, Moseley and Stubbs, with the Metropolitan Cathedral Orchestra and Cantata Choir. 7.30 pm in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King. Tickets and details Tel: 0151 707 3525 or

Sunday 7 July Ordination of Deacons 3.00 pm in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King. Celebrant: Archbishop Malcolm McMahon OP. Animate Youth Ministries Lourdes Departure Mass 6.30 pm at St Mary’s, Lowe House, St Helens, WA10 2BE. Tuesday 9 July Time Out on Tuesdays 10.00 am to 4.00 pm at the Cenacle, Tithebarn Grove, Lance Lane, Liverpool L15 6TW. An opportunity for quiet time, away from the daily rush of life. Offering £10 per person (bring your own lunch). For further details contact: Sister Winifred. Tel: 0151 722 2271, Email: Wednesday 10 July ‘Songs we Remember.’ Singing and enjoyment for anyone who likes to sing but particularly geared towards those living with dementia and their carers. 2.00 pm to 3.30 pm at St Thomas of Canterbury Parish Hall, Great Georges Road, Waterloo, L22 1RD. Details: Irenaeus Tel: 0151 949 1199. Email: UCM bi-monthly Mass 7.30 pm at St George, Station Road, Maghull, L31 3DF. Thursday 11 July Feast of St Benedict. Day of Prayer for Europe.

Friday 12 July to Sunday 14 July ‘Self-esteem and the Love of God.’ A weekend retreat led by Father Pat Collins at St Joseph’s Prayer Centre, Blundell Avenue, Freshfield, Formby, L37 1PH. Bookings (including nonresidents): Tel: 01704 875850 or 07712 178670. Email: Website: Saturday 13 July St Joseph’s Hospice Garden Party and Family Fun Day 12.30 pm at St Joseph’s Hospice, Thornton, L23 4UE. Teddy Bears Picnic, artisan food and craft stalls, raffle and tombola. Details: ‘Choral Classics’ Concert with the Choir of Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral and Crosby Symphony Orchestra An evening of choral and orchestral classics. Tickets and details Tel: 0151 707 3525 or St Mary’s College Proms in the Park 7.30 pm at St Mary’s Blundell Park Playing Field, Little Crosby Road. The concert will be compered by BBC Radio Merseyside presenter Roger Phillips, and conducted by St Mary’s Director of Music, Andrew Byers. Tickets: £17.50 (adults), £10.00 (children and students), with entrance free for youngsters under five. Family ticket (two adults and two children) £50.00. Bookings: St. Mary’s College Tel: 0151-924 3926. Sunday 14 July Sea Sunday Lourdes Pilgrimage Departure Mass 5.00 pm in the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King. Friday 19 July to Friday 26 July Archdiocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes

Website at 16

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july Saturday 20 July ‘Magnificat’ Concert with the players and singers of the Liverpool Bach Collective directed by Philip Duffy Music by J S Bach and Purcell. 7.30 pm at the Church of Our Lady and St Nicholas (Liverpool Parish Church), Old Churchyard, Liverpool L2 8TZ. Tickets: £10 (concessions £7) at the door.

Saturday 13 July

Tuesday 23 July Metropolitan Cathedral Chapter Mass 12.15 pm in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel of the Metropolitan Cathedral. Wednesday 24 July ‘Songs we Remember.’ Singing and enjoyment for anyone

who likes to sing but particularly geared towards those living with dementia and their carers. 2.00 pm to 3.30 pm at St Thomas of

Canterbury Parish Hall, Great Georges Road, Waterloo, L22 1RD. Details: Irenaeus Tel: 0151 949 1199. Email:

Cardinal Nichols’ call to support seafarers The Archbishop of Westminster has paid a visit to Catholic charity Liverpool Seafarers Centre, encouraging local communities to support seafarers ahead of Sea Sunday this month. Cardinal Vincent Nichols visited the charity’s Crosby headquarters on 15 June to hear about the support it offers the 50,000 seafarers passing through the Port of Liverpool annually. The cardinal, who grew up in Crosby, said: ‘It’s wonderful to know the centre is there to respond to the needs of seafarers, with practical and spiritual support, and I really do want to thank them. Seafarers have long been synonymous with the city of Liverpool, but more importantly they play a fundamental role in each of our lives, with 95 percent of British imports and exports transported by sea.’ Sea Sunday falls on 14 July and charities including the national Apostleship of the Sea, the Mission to Seafarers and the Sailors’ Society as well as non-denominational groups such as Sea Cadets are planning fundraisers, parades and awareness campaigns. Cardinal Nichols added: ‘We’re encouraging all parishes to reach out ahead of Sea Sunday and help raise greater awareness of the important contribution that seafarers make to all of our lives. ‘When I visited Tilbury Docks, I was surprised to learn about the speed with which ships turn around and the limited opportunities crew members have to get off the ships and to do the things you can’t do on ships, such as go to church, shop, get medical attention and contact their families.’ Liverpool Seafarers Centre CEO John Wilson said it was ‘a privilege’ to welcome the cardinal and added: ‘We were thrilled he was able to pay tribute to the work of all those involved with our charity while acknowledging the professionalism, dedication and sacrifice of our visiting seafarers. He said the Church will continue supporting their faith and welfare needs through its maritime mission agency, the Apostleship of the Sea.’ Liverpool Seafarers Centre is a partnership between the Catholic Apostleship of the Sea and the Anglican Mersey Mission to Seafarers and offers a place to rest and receive practical and emotional support through its bases in Liverpool Cruise Terminal, Crosby and Eastham. • For more information, visit:

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INDEPENDENT NT F FAMILY A AMIL LY RUN FUNERAL F DIRECTOR New Branch in Rainhill Opening Soon Debbie Bennett are a fair priced funeral directors that has been open in Prescot for over two years. Offering a professional, quality and caring service. I have worked in the funeral industry for over 20 years, having gained a National Diploma in Funeral Directing, and am an experienced dedicated Funeral Director supported by a team of professional and highly trained staff who you can depend on. Losing a loved one can be a harrowing experience. We not only take care of your loved one with the utmost dignity and respect but also ensure you receive the highest level of guidance, care and support during this most difficult time. I have considerable experience in working in Knowsley, St Helens and the surrounding areas. I decided to open my own Funeral Directors in the heart of these communities, so I can continue to provide a professional caring service. We are not part of a chain but have all the resources to ensure that everything is safely taken care of. We sincerely believe that offering a personal service is so important at this difficult time. Due to continued and loyal support we are expanding and opening another branch in Rainhill, Station Road in July where we will continue to provide the same level of professionalism and exceptional caring service. Kindest Regards Debbie Bennett Dip. FD Please do not hesitate to call me to discuss any aspects of your funeral arrangements or funeral plans.


As seen in churches throughout Britain, we make pew cushions to any length or width or thickness Many colours to choose from for your pew cushions including claret, blue, terra cotta, green and others. To see the hundreds of churches we have supplied with pew cushions, please go to Pews News on our website home page

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Freephone 0800 015 44 33

0151 426 3131 email:

To continue to help support over 6,000 vulnerable children and adults across the North West, Nugent’s charity shop is in urgent need of donations. You can donate any items at our shop at:

73 Allerton Road, Liverpool, L18 2DH (Monday - Saturday, 9am - 5pm) 73 Allerton Road, Liverpool, L18 2DH Registered Charity: 222930



0151 737 2951

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Paul Loughran

Head teacher determined to help ‘the whole child’ By Simon Hart ‘I came to the school 21 years ago as a supply teacher so I know lots of the families – children I taught are now some of the parents of children we’ve got. It may be time to move on!’ Paul Loughran has his tongue firmly in his cheek as he reflects on his longevity as a teacher at St Michael’s Catholic Primary School in Halton – after all, there appears little threat of the 54-year-old overstaying his welcome given his recent accolade as Primary Head Teacher of the Year. That prize came his way at the Archdiocese of Liverpool School awards in May and the praise that he insists on sharing with his ‘dedicated staff, committed governors and amazing pupils’ is certainly warranted given his efforts to bring closer together the Widnes school and its local Ditton community. ‘We try to engage with our community as much as possible,’ he says. ‘The community has its challenges, with a high percentage of disadvantaged families, so we always strive to ensure our children get the very best education experience and learn about their local environment.’ Examples of the activities that also

earned St Michael’s a place on the shortlist for this year’s Contribution to the Community award are plentiful, starting with the involvement of ‘many of our Year 6 pupils’ in the Halton Mayor’s awards scheme. ‘They have to do so many voluntary hours of helping in the community,’ Paul explains. ‘This included visits to a local care home, litter picking and even random acts of kindness to strangers in the street.’ All of his staff, including the pastoral team led by Stef Lockley, work hard to provide support to families. ‘It’s very important to work in partnership with our community and make good links between home and school.’ He adds: ‘I just want the children to have the best educational experiences that they can and that’s not just about the academic side. We look to look after the whole individual – academically, socially, pastorally. I’m aware of this area and how hard it is for young people growing up – I came from a similar area myself in Bootle and my parents instilled in me that whatever you do, you do it to the very best of your ability. I’ve taken that on board as a head teacher.’ For Paul, who spent three years studying and coaching football at Southern Illinois

University in the United States and has an involvement as a coach and scout with Everton’s academy, physical exercise is important and every pupil at St Michael’s takes part in the ‘Daily Mile’ after registration each morning. He elaborates: ‘We have an area that circles the school and they are asked to run, walk, jog – whatever they want – for 10 minutes. If they run for the full 10 mins they’ll complete the mile but it’s not about completing a mile, it’s about a healthy start to your day. When they come back inside, they’re actually ready to learn and those with excess energy have got rid of some of it. ‘Another initiative we’ve recently started is linked in with the national schools breakfast programme. We’re the first school in Halton to introduce it. It’s with money taken from the sugar tax and due to the area where we’re located, we’re able to provide every child with breakfast every day.’ They get plenty else too – from extracurricular club activities including art, music and sport, to an hour’s Spanish each week from the age of four. The overall goal, he notes, is a simple one – and highly admirable: ‘I want the children to become good citizens of the future.’

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education news Carmel College retains its Ofsted Outstanding status!

Carmel College has retained its ‘Outstanding’ status after it was reinspected by Ofsted at the end of April 2019. The college was graded outstanding when it was previously inspected in 2007. This makes Carmel the only Outstanding Sixth Form College nationally, that has retained its outstanding grade over the last ten years. Carmel has around 2300 students, including 300 higher education students. Fifty per cent of Carmel’s students come from widening participation postcodes, however the college is consistently ranked in the top 10 colleges nationally for the amount of progress students make. The college attracts applications from over 90 high schools across St Helens and neighbouring boroughs. Last year, over 75per cent of students who left Carmel went to work, train or continue their studies in employment areas identified as priorities by the Liverpool City Region LEP. In total, over 98 per cent of students made a positive progression from Carmel to university, further education, apprenticeships or employment. The college work hard to support local schools to ensure that as many young people as possible, from our area of the North West, are able to progress onto sustainable and positive careers. They provide local schools with support from staff and students who act as mentors to help motivate and aspire high school students, especially in the areas of maths, creative and digital and 20

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life sciences. With support from the Chambers of Commerce and Liverpool Hope University, they have also this year launched the Carmel Service and Leaders Award. This builds on the community work and volunteering opportunities the college encourages all of our students to take advantage of, great emphasis is also placed on providing excellent careers advice and guidance. The Ofsted report stated: “Students strive to achieve the very high standards their teachers set. They make excellent progress, achieve their qualifications and progress to aspirational destinations.” Carmel College principal Mike Hill, said:

“We are extremely happy with the Ofsted report and proud that we continue to be an Outstanding College. “This is a fitting reward for the hard work of the whole staff at Carmel, both academic and support, who strive to uphold the college mission and ensure the best outcome for every individual student. “The commitment and dedication of our fantastic students, who we are blessed to serve, also rightly received considerable praise from the Inspectors. We hope that Carmel’s success can also support and nurture the continued improvement in education across St Helens and help inspire younger students to perform at their very best.”

Sports day for anti-knife crime campaign Faith Primary (Joint Church) School in Everton, which works in partnership with Saint Francis Xavier's Church Liverpool, recently organised a special fun sports day, to raise awareness of the Anti Knife Crime Campaign. The day, funded by Saint Francis Xavier's Church through the Jesuit Fund for Social Justice, provided fun activities, guest speakers, hospitality and a healthy competitive football tournament. There were newly refurbished five-a-side pitches available in the school grounds. The children and staff of Faith Primary School kept two static bikes moving throughout the whole day - even Debbie, Pastoral Assistant at SFX Church Liverpool, joined in and, although it was just for few minutes, there is photographic evidence of the episode! It was a great opportunity also to raise money for the local FoodBank at West Everton Community Council (WECC). The staff at Faith Primary School, led by the enthusiasm and networking of Mr John Wade, were behind the planning for this wonderful informative and challenging day. The 'Real Men Don't Carry Knives' Group gave great awareness and understanding to the children about the dangers of knife crime and included the neighbourhood Boxing Club 'The Solly' to give some exercise workshops and advice. Year 5 children from the local primary schools were also invited. The programme concluded in the afternoon with a five-a-side football competition. The winners were presented with a trophy from professional Liverpool boxer Liam Smith.

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education news

Mini Vinnies at St Teresa’s

by Louise Moon (Deputy Headteacher) At St Teresa's Catholic Primary School, Penwortham, our pupils are ambassadors of our mission, ‘Christ be in our heads, in our hearts and in our hands.’. They appreciate, value and actively participate in all aspects of Catholic Life and the mission of the school. During the Spring term, the St Teresa's Mini Vinnies group helped to organise a Spirituality Day for the whole school. The Mini Vinnies used the school mission as a stimulus for the entire day and helped the teachers to lead a range of reflective activities. Each class was transformed into a prayer space where children could gather together, read scripture, pray and focus purely on their Jesus and their spirituality. The prayer spaces included; hopes and dreams, forgiveness, creation, love, charity across the world, kindness and Jesus - the light of the World. The children commented on how much they had enjoyed experiencing each activity. Mairi said, 'Spirituality day was relaxing and calm. We should definitely do it again.' Oliver said, 'It gave me time to be with Jesus and I enjoyed the meditation'.

Statue back in pride of place at Archbishop Beck

The return of a statue was reason for celebration at Archbishop Beck Catholic College last month. The statue of St Bonaventure, the school’s patron saint, was restored to a prominent position at the entrance to the campus – and rededicated on 7 June. It first stood on an outside wall of the then newly built St Bonaventure's Catholic High School on Cedar Road in 1960. ‘This is a wonderful part of our history,’ said head teacher Paul Dickinson. ‘We trace our foundation back to 1960, firstly as St Bonaventure's Catholic High School and now in our present-day foundation as Archbishop Beck Catholic College.’

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education news

ASFA is awarded Gold Liverpool Writing Quality Mark

Students and staff at The Academy of St Francis of Assisi (ASFA) are celebrating after being awarded the gold standard Liverpool Writing Quality Mark. The Liverpool Writing Quality Mark has been devised by School Improvement Liverpool to help schools promote the importance of writing to students and ensuring there is an excellent standard throughout the year groups. In order to achieve the top writing quality mark, ASFA had to evidence good practice taking place across the school in all subjects and demonstrate how they promote writing with students. The quality mark focusses on writing but other aspects of literacy were also inspected as it is difficult to separate reading, writing and oracy as they are interlinked. The assessor looked at a range of evidence and enjoyed a tour of


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the school, going into lessons, listening to students and visiting the library. What particularly impressed the assessor, and helped the Kensington academy achieve gold, was the diverse range of opportunities our students have to develop their writing and literacy skills. This includes students’ involvement in Debate Mate and reflects the dedication from Miss Hussain, teacher of RE, who recently won the Debate Mate Most Committed Teacher prize at the annual Debate Mate Awards. In addition, exercise books were on display which demonstrated the pride students take in their work and how the curriculum is designed to stretch and challenge students of all abilities. However, the real jewel in the crown were the students themselves who met with the assessor to tell her about their

experiences as students of The Academy of St Francis of Assisi. With great enthusiasm, they explained how literacy is now embedded in every subject and how they felt their own skills had developed as a result. Tracey Greenough, headteacher at The Academy of St Francis of Assisi, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled to be awarded the gold standard Liverpool Writing Quality Mark. “We are proud to showcase how we use writing across the whole curriculum. From analysing work in ICT, writing compelling speeches in Issues and Beliefs, creative work in English or producing revision guides in Maths. The award shows the high standard of work we do at our Academy and the high expectations we set for ourselves. “Both staff and students should be very proud of this achievement.”

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education news

Bishops Tom visits school Bishop Tom Williams recently paid a returned visit to Blessed Sacrament Catholic Primary School in Walton. It was six years ago since his last visit and he thought that the school was ‘transformed’, and especially like the wonderful learning environment. Bishop Tom visited children in their classrooms to ask them about what they were learning about and to allow them to ask him some questions. They asked him about his Bishop’s ring and what it meant, about why he was dressed the way he was and in particular, why he wore pink. The children were fascinated to learn about the symbolism of the colours (black for a priest, pink for a bishop, red for a cardinal and white for just the Pope). When visiting the children ‘upstairs’ in Year 6, he even talked to them about the history of Everton and Liverpool football clubs and how this relationship linked to the city as a whole! Headteacher Chris Davey, said: “Bishop Tom was very impressed when we showed him our school, Blessed Sacrament, in Ghorka in Nepal - a school funded with charitable donations from our school community. “We visited the children whilst eating their lunch in the dining room and I enjoyed lunch with Bishop Tom in my office as we talked about school and parish life”.

Bishop Tom with headteacher Chris Davey and pupils from Blessed Sacrament Catholic Primary School

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education news

Archbishop is VIP guest at St Mary’s College centenary dinner St Mary’s College in Crosby welcomed back one of its most illustrious former students at a special event to mark the school’s centenary year. Archbishop of Westminster Cardinal Vincent Nichols, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, was the VIP guest at a service of thanksgiving and celebration dinner at Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral. His Eminence was a pupil from 1956 to 1963 at the leading independent school which was founded in 1919. Other honoured guests at the event included Mark Blundell, the Lord-Lieutenant of Merseyside, and his wife Suzanne. The evening began with a Mass in the cathedral celebrated by Archbishop Nichols who in his well-received homily produced a programme from St Mary’s 1958 speech day at which - appropriately - he had been presented with a prize for religious studies. He also mentioned another more recent former pupil - Liverpool footballer Trent Alexander-Arnold - praising him for the happiness he and his teammates had brought to the city with their achievements on the pitch this season. Following the Mass, the celebrations moved downstairs to the cathedral’s Lutyens Crypt, where guests enjoyed a three-course dinner and the opportunity to catch up with friends from the school, past and present. During the dinner Archbishop Nichols was presented with the first copy of St Mary’s centenary publication - Fidem Vita Fateri (We show our faith by the way we live, love and learn) - a brief history of the school by current Head of History, Niall Rothnie. The evening ended with an auction and raffle in aid of the St Mary’s Centenary Fund, which is raising money for scholarships, bursaries and new facilities, followed by dancing to the swing and rock and roll sounds of the Retro Revolution Band. St Mary’s Principal, Mike Kennedy, commented: “This event was an excellent way to celebrate the college’s 100th birthday, and everyone associated with the school was delighted that Archbishop Nichols was able to join us. “The dinner is part of a wide-ranging programme of centenary activities throughout this year which we hope will provide something for everyone to enjoy, while at the same time doing justice to the school’s proud history.”


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Archbishop Nichols pictured with the Lord-Lieutenant of Merseyside Mark Blundell (centre), St Mary’s Principal Mike Kennedy, Head Girl Georgina Duncan and Head Boy Charlie Allen

Liverpool Metropolital Cathedral was the spectacular setting for the service of thanksgiving

Niall Rothnie presents Archbishop Nichols with the first copy of the new history of St Marys

Some of the guests who attended the centenary dinner in the cathedral’s Lutyens Crypt

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cathedral A busy year July sees the choir draw to the end of what has been an exceptionally busy year. The choir year started back in September with the Adoremus Eucharistic Congress, with the choir singing at liturgies here at the Cathedral and down at the Convention Centre in the city centre. This was followed by a choir tour to Cologne in Germany (which is twinned with Liverpool) where we had the privilege of singing at High Mass together with Cologne Cathedral Choir in Cologne Cathedral. In November we celebrated the 10th anniversary of the first service sung by our girl choristers before the usual busy round of liturgies, carol services and concerts in December marking the seasons of Advent and Christmas. The first few months of 2019 were mercifully quiet, but since Easter the choirs have been involved with three major concerts (all to excellent audiences) in addition to the usual round of choral services and rehearsals which has required an immense amount of time and effort from all of our choir members and staff. However, the choir year is not quite complete yet. On Saturday 13th July we shall be presenting a special concert in the Cathedral entitled ‘Choral Classics’ in conjunction with the Crosby Symphony Orchestra. The choir will sing ‘Classic FM’ favourites such as ‘Zadok the Priest’ (Handel), ‘I was Glad’ (Parry) and the whole of Antonio Vivaldi’s evergreen ‘Gloria.’ We are delighted to welcome back former lay clerk Stuart O’Hara who will sing Ralph Vaughan

by Dr Christopher McElroy Director of Music, Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral Williams’ ‘Five Mystical Songs’. To round the evening off the Orchestra will play Edward Elgar’s ‘Pomp and Circumstance March Number One’ (perhaps better known as ‘Land of Hope and Glory’) and ‘Nimrod’ from his Enigma variations. It promises to be a wonderful concert, showcasing the talents of all our choir members, young and old, who spend many hours during the year giving their services to the Church to enhance the choral worship of the Cathedral to the Glory of God. Tickets for the concert (£12) can be purchased on-line at or by calling the Cathedral gift shop on 0151 707 3525. One new initiative we shall be undertaking over the next few years is that we have set ourselves the ambitious challenge of having the Cathedral Choir visit every pastoral area in our Archdiocese over the next five years. We began in June by visiting Wigan, and we will continue in the Autumn term with visits to three other pastoral areas. If you would like to get in touch about us coming to your pastoral area, please get in touch. Email: May I take this opportunity to wish you all a relaxing summer, and we look forward to being back again in September for another year of music making.

Girl Choristers’ 10th anniversary 18 November 2018

Cathedral Record Canon Anthony O’Brien – Cathedral Dean We have our final Cathedral Synod Listening meeting at the beginning of the month. Along with most of our parishes we have tried to reach out to engage with people in a variety of ways. This has meant us setting up a Synod ‘Pop up Shop’ on the Piazza as a listening station, having our own special Synod Sunday listening Day and then further afternoon and evening meetings. At the time of writing I am not sure what response we will get but we are hoping the extra incentive of a free set of rosary beads may get the crowds involved. On Sunday 7 July at 3.00 pm Archbishop Malcolm will ordain four men to serve as deacons in parishes within the archdiocese. They are Gergely Juhasz, Peter Mawtus, Michael Moffat and Paul Rooney. The following weekend our Cathedral choirs will be teaming up with the Crosby Symphony Orchestra for an end of term celebratory concert in the Cathedral at 7.30 pm on Saturday13 July which is open to the public. Prior to the start of the Liverpool Archdiocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes the Departure Mass will be celebrated in the Cathedral at 5.00 pm on Sunday 14 July. We end the month with a week-long celebration of Hope University Graduations. The Cathedral always enjoys hosting their Graduation Ceremonies as they are always joyful and respectful celebrations and we have visitors from across the world attending the various ceremonies who really appreciate the fact that they are taking place in the Cathedral and have a religious dimension to them. Life at the Cathedral goes on throughout the summer holiday period, but I wish you all an enjoyable time whether you are holidaying at home or abroad.

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Mums the Word More than 100 members of the Union of Catholic Mothers gathered together for our National Council and Annual General Meeting at the Hayes Conference Centre in Swanwick, Derbyshire in May. Once again we heard about all the wonderful work both nationally and internationally that our representatives do on our behalf – and we thank them most sincerely for it.

A century of service News from the Liverpool Province of the Knights of St Columba

Province joins national pilgrimage to Iona

We also saw Mrs Kate Moss inaugurated as the new UCM national secretary, meaning that now all three national officers come from the Liverpool Archdiocese. You will have heard of the Northern Powerhouse – well, it is really happening in the UCM! On the return journey, the three aforementioned national officers plus nine other members were squeezed into a minibus stuffed with boxes, banners and other impedimenta (oh alright, then – stuff) when we heard a rattle and a bang and smelled the whiff of diesel fumes. ‘We have a problem,’ declared the driver as we pulled onto a very narrow grass verge on the extremely busy A50 and then waited for over two hours to be rescued by the AA. Picture the scene: 12 ladies on the side of the road with scores of coaches, lorries, cars and motorbikes thundering past us – and we only attracted one beep of a horn. Obviously the days of our youth have gone! Eventually two large taxis came to our aid and we arrived home tired and hungry but safe. • The annual Pilgrimage to Walsingham comes around again on 1-3 July. A coachful of members along with some of our chaplains will travel across to Norfolk on Monday 1st and we pray that Our Lady will provide us with her usual good weather. We will pray for all of your intentions while we are there and we ask for your prayers for a successful pilgrimage. • Please remember that the next bi-monthly Mass will be held on Wednesday 10 July at St George's, Maghull, L31 3DF at 7.30 pm. Please come if you can. God bless, Madelaine McDonald, media officer 26

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We celebrate the feast day of our patron, St Columba, on 9 June and this year, to mark our centenary, a national pilgrimage was arranged to the island of Iona for a celebration of Mass there. It was there that Columba arrived from Ireland in 563, and there that he died on 9 June 597 having spent most of his life bringing Christianity to Scotland and further afield. Iona Abbey* provided the setting and those in attendance included the supreme knight of the order, Bertie Grogan, and deputy supreme knight Harry Welsh, together with visitors from Liverpool province such as our provincial grand knight, Ray Pealing, and one of his predecessors, Pat Foley. The Mass to celebrate the feast day locally took place at St Columba’s Parish Church, Huyton where we always receive a very warm welcome from Father Chris McCoy and his parishioners and we thank him once again for his support. St Columba’s Parish Church in Port Erin, meanwhile, was the venue for the Mass of celebration on the Isle of Man. • It is with much sadness we report the death of Brother Pat McGann a

former provincial grand knight of Liverpool, and a profound and abiding influence on the order during the long years of his membership that began nearly four decades ago. His Requiem Mass took place at St Francis Parish Church, Garston on 29 May, and those present included Bertie Grogan and Harry Welsh – supreme knight and deputy supreme knight respectively – and Frank Redmond, a past supreme knight of the order, along with many parishioners, friends and neighbours, all gathered to underline the high esteem in which Pat was held. Pat’s family wish to convey their appreciation and thanks for the support and prayers received at this sad time. • On 14 July we will be attending the Annual Mass at Harkirk Chapel on the Ince Blundell Estate. This will be followed by a social evening at St William of York Parish Centre, which will form part of the provincial centenary celebrations. *Photo of Iona Abbey reproduced here by kind permission of Jenny Ross, Iona Photography and Iona Community. Websites: and Email:

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PIC Life Why kindness can boost our mental health By Moira Billinge ‘If wisdom’s ways you wisely seek, Five things observe with care: To whom you speak, Of whom you speak And how, and when and where.’ Have you ever passed on a piece of gossip? Maybe it felt okay at the time, but did the guilt kick in afterwards and make you wish that you had said nothing? If you have ever been on the receiving end of gossip you will know that it hurts a lot, and probably made you feel horribly exposed and vulnerable. A February 2010 edition of Psychology Today declared: ‘Gossip is like those dreams where you wake up and go to school and discover that you forgot to put your clothes on. It exposes you to the powerful public eye, and all the scrutiny, evaluation, ridicule, and ostracism that come with that exposure.’

If you are on the receiving end of gossip, where can you hide? If it continues for long enough, what does it do to your morale? Is life even worth living? Until fairly recently, ‘mental health’ was not generally talked about, and many people suffered in silence until they reached crisis point. Now it is a cause that has been energetically and vigorously taken up by all sorts of people across the globe – celebrities, athletes, and even royalty – and, thankfully, mental health issues no longer carry the stigma that they once did. Rarely does a day pass by without someone taking up the cudgel of mental health in the media, and it is even being incorporated into the storylines of popular television and radio programmes. Yet despite knowing that we are not Teflon-coated after all, and can ‘break’ far more easily than was acknowledged in the past, we continue to scrutinise the lives of individuals in the public eye in minute detail – as if they are not real people with real lives, and therefore can’t really be hurt.

Greeting Cards from Carmel If you haven’t already visited Maryton Carmel in Allerton do put it on your ‘to do’ list. There are beautiful greeting cards for all occasions, prayer cards and medals on sale in the shop, excellent quality and inexpensive. Contact the Sisters at Maryton Grange, Allerton Road, L18 3NU. Telephone the card office on 0151 724 7102 or Email the Sisters at


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The notion that we can say anything about anyone with impunity impacts negatively on society as a whole and our penchant for gossip has ignored its – sometimes – deadly consequences, for which status or office provide little immunity. ‘At least if they are talking about me, they are leaving someone else alone.’ Brave words like these ring hollow, ultimately. Unless the victim is extraordinarily thickskinned, gossip hurts and can have lasting effects. Occasionally, a story holds a grain of truth, but, as the adage goes, ‘There are three truths to every story: yours, mine and the real truth.’ Aesop (620–564 BC) was a story-teller whose tales are as relevant today as they were in his own time. He tells of a fox which invited a crane to dinner and provided bean soup in a flat dish from which the bird found it impossible to eat. The fox thought this very funny. The crane, however, had a fitting response and invited him to a meal served into a long-necked flask. The fox found it impossible to taste the food at the bottom. The moral of the story is that we should behave towards others as we would like them to behave towards us. Mutual kindness is the best way of improving society’s mental health. Let our human words make the Divine Word living, human, alive and active in our own little world. May each new day be a wonderful opportunity to allow God to fill our words and for each word to be a genuine ‘I love you’ to everybody that we meet.

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Catholic PIC retreats and away days 2019 Catholic Pic Retreat Day

Catholic Pic Away Days 2019

Summer 2019 Retreat Days will be led by Father Peter Morgan - we will visit:

During the summer of 2019 we have planned away days to: • Conwy Wednesday 3 July (Please note change of date) • Lytham St Anne’s Wednesday 31 July • Arnside/Grange over Sands Wednesday 7 August If you would like to join us on one or more of our away days please ring 0151 733 5492 for your booking forms

Wednesday 10 July Franciscan Monastery at Pantasaph (Please note new date)

CATHOLIC PIC PILGRIMAGE 2020 The Catholic Pic are organising a pilgrimage to ‘The Holy Land’ on October 8-16, 2020 Pick up your August 2019 issue of the Catholic Pic for details or ring now to register your interest on 0151 733 5492

Worth a visit - Lytham St Anne’s This month, take a trip to a sleepy seaside resort south of Blackpool, writes Lucy Oliver. Lytham St Anne’s is well known for having hosted The Open golf championship 11 times. However, this peaceful area offers much more. Populated since the Bronze Age because of its access to good fishing on the salt marsh, Lytham was included in the Domesday Book as Lidun. The town has a long faith history too. Four Benedictine monks from Durham established a small priory here in the 12th century. In 1540, the monastery was dissolved under Henry VIII and the manor passed through several hands before it was replaced by the current

Lytham Hall. A pleasing stroll along The Green, an impressive stretch running between the shore and main coastal road, will take you to the Old Lifeboat House Museum (open weekends) and the picturesque Lytham Windmill (open Wednesday to Sunday in the summer). For bird watchers, meanwhile, the estuary is a feeding ground for thousands of birds each year, from red knot and dunlin to bartailed godwit and pinkfooted geese.

Back in town, the Lytham Heritage Centre on Henry Street is worth calling in on – and the many locally run cafes nearby provide plenty of options for afternoon tea and cake.

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Letter from Wonersh By Peter Murphy t the recent national youth event, Flame, Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh only had to sing four words ‘O Lord, my God’ before Wembley Arena continued as one ‘when I in awesome wonder’. There are some hymns, such as How Great Thou Art and As I Kneel Before You, which, regardless of our age, seem to run through our Catholic veins. I was recently reminded of another hymn that could easily be placed into this category, I Watch the Sunrise. However, it was not the sunrise that I was reflecting upon. While visiting some friends on the Welsh coast, the weather was unusually warm and pleasant. Therefore, in the evening we decided to sit out and watch the sunset. Despite the fact that I grew up at the seaside, I had never previously made the time to sit and take in the beauty of this event. The sun was slower to set than I had expected, but this meant that there was time not only to enjoy conversation, but also for some personal reflection. It was then that those words which I have sung many times, really began to resonate with me: I watch the sunset fading way, lighting the clouds with sleep. And as the evening closes its eyes, I feel your presence near me. One of the best forms of prayer which I have picked up during my time at seminary, the Examen, is very similar to this experience. At first I thought the Examen was simply thinking about any mistakes or sins that I may have committed over the course of the day. However, having read The Examen Prayer by Father Timothy Gallagher OMV and discussed this form of prayer with my spiritual director, I came to realise that this experience of prayer was something much more profound. The Examen gives us the opportunity, in the presence of God, to reflect back on the past day and notice how God has been truly present in each of the joys and sorrows, the successes and failures – no matter how big or small they may have been. During this month many of us will experience the sun beginning to set over another academic year. I hope that this time might serve as an opportunity for us to reflect back on each of the events of the past year, and in prayer begin to make plans for how we might ‘start again’ when September comes. At the end of this month I will join the Archdiocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes. Please be assured that I will remember you, and your families, at the Grotto.



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justice & peace Why do Justice and Peace organisations use social media? Why on earth would the Liverpool Archdiocesan Justice and Peace Commission, along with the Archdiocese itself, the National Justice and Peace Network (NJPN) and other J&P-based groups use a number of different social media accounts? While it is important to acknowledge the flaws and be aware of the potential dangers when dealing with social media, which may seem a bit daunting for the uninitiated at first, the advantages are plentiful. Social media can be very valuable to groups such as ourselves. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as ‘Websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking.’ There are many different social media ‘platforms’, of which the four most popular are YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. • YouTube is a video-sharing service that allows users to watch videos posted by other users and upload videos of their own. It is also the second most popular search engine behind Google, and is one of the most popular sources for news. • Facebook is a popular free social networking website that allows registered users to create profiles, upload photos and video, send messages and keep in touch with friends, family, organisations and colleagues. • Twitter is an online news and social networking site where people communicate in short messages called tweets. • Instagram is a photo-sharing app which allows users to assign filters to photos and share them with followers. These platforms are fantastic for promoting an event, sharing news or raising awareness of a particular issue, allowing you to instantly reach thousands of people, all for free – meaning an opportunity to communicate with potential new contacts who would never have had the chance to find out about J&P without the use of social media. They also allow you to share photos, reports, resources and videos from events with both people who attended and those who were unable to be there. Social media has brought the world together, making it possible to connect with millions of people at the click of a single button a wonderful example being the ability to sign and share petitions online. Twenty-five years ago, getting 10,000 signatures on a petition would have taken a very long time, and a lot of effort, whereas nowadays it can take a single hour. While previously it would have been impossible for petitions to receive a million signatures, now it not uncommon – as was the case with the petition for a second referendum, which achieved over seven million signatories in under five days. Social media is not perfect, but it is an asset we certainly should take advantage of if we can, especially when Pope Francis has said that ‘Text messages and social media are a gift from God’ in his message ‘Communication and Mercy: A Fruitful Encounter’ for the 50th World Day of Social Communications. Our website is and our accounts can be found at: videos Please continue to pray for Steve Atherton and NHS staff.

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Keep up to date with all the news from around the Archdiocese online at: You can now follow us on twitter at:


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