Cycling, walking and all in between!

What a whirlwind June was! It started with a sponsored cycle in Runcorn to raise money for their KIVA account (online loans to people in need across the world) and for future events. It was great to welcome 2 of our year 5’s too.

During the first week of June I went into the Year 3 Class in St. Michael’s and worked with them as they began to prepare their next Class Mass, to be held on the Memorial of St. Alban. They learnt about who St. Alban was, looked at responses during Mass and I left with them the Sanctus to learn…did they manage it? Of course, we also did some art that could go together for the Mass too.

The following weekend was Pentecost weekend! On the Saturday I went to the World Youth Day at Home event at Alton Castle. In the morning we heard some great speakers – Archbishop Comensoli and David Wells followed by a time of praise and worship led by Matt Maher. In the afternoon Jo Boyce and a local school performed ‘Born For This’ the stations of the Cross and we heard from John Pridmore before a time of reconciliation. After workshops we celebrated Mass together before having some food and then a concert by Matt Maher! So a very full, interesting and thoughtful day before heading home.

At Saint Michael’s on Pentecost Sunday we had a wonderful International Mass. We had readings and prayers in all different languages, including Spanish, Russian, Italian, Filipino and Indian – just to name a few. Mass started with a procession, the children had made flags from different countries and also a Pentecost themed banner, flame hats and much more! The church was truly alive with the Holy Spirit! After Mass, the celebration continued as we had an international shared table in the school hall.

Also at the end of Mass new Church leaflets were given out. Through funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, St. Michael’s is currently having it’s roof replaced. As a parish we have to work to promote the heritage of the Church so a small group has been meeting to discuss how to do this. A leaflet has been produced and a group of volunteers are ready to give guided tours!

That was all in the first 9 days of June! Phew!

The following week was slightly quieter – the weekly SLT meeting in Runcorn and then going into St. Michael’s and working with Year 4 to prepare for their class Mass.

On the Thursday of the second week it was Year 5’s Class Mass and what a great Feast to celebrate – Our Lord Jesus Christ the Eternal High Priest. More great reading and beautiful singing helped the Parishioners celebrate.

Over in Runcorn the following weekend it was time to celebrate the work that has been done by the Faith in Action Group. They have been meeting for the past 3 years and raising money for charities, taking on various ministries in the Parish, helping in the gardens, leading Liturgies for the Parish and spending time in prayer – just to mention a few things! Sandy, the Director of the Youth Mission Team came and presented them with their badges and certificates – the first ones given out in the diocese! We had 12 young people awarded (sadly one couldn’t be there on the day) with various levels – pin, bronze and silver – all were very close to getting the next level! What a great achievement for them all!

The following week was a mix of meetings with various people and groups – it was lovely to go along to the First Sacraments meeting and encourage them with choosing a ministry to take up. On the Thursday it was Year 3’s turn to come to Mass. Parishioners were astounded by their reading – there were a few tricky words – and again their singing was fantastic!

It was fundraising time over in St. Michael’s as the young people in the parish were invited to walk the Wirral Coastal Walk – well at least the first 4 miles – to raise money for future events and trips. It started off as a fairly cool morning, but once we got started the sun came out and it really started to warm up! We made it to the 4 mile mark and spent a bit of time sat by the beach at New Brighton before heading home.

The last week of the month was another busy one! It started with a meeting with some of the catechists in Runcorn hearing about how another parish prepares the children for their First Sacraments – I always find sharing like this is great as everyone comes away with new ideas. Tuesday was an office morning doing things for both parishes and then in the afternoon was the weekly Leadership meeting.

On Wednesday I helped Sandy and Sophie at the Annual Schools Day – about 200 young people from some of the diocesan secondary schools gathered together for activities based on the theme of happiness and to celebrate Mass with Bishop Mark. The young people got so much out of the day – one activity was to write a tweet telling someone what you learnt that day – they were so powerful!

The month ended with Year 4’s class Mass on the memorial of St. Cyril of Alexandria. They led us beautifully with their reading and singing!

And so onto July – Faith in Action Trip, Confirmation preparation, St. Michael’s Youth trip and so much more!! Let’s hope the sun keeps shining for it all!

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