Pat Smith - The way of St James

Pat Smith is walking the full 500 miles of the Camino Del Santiago. 


His pilgrimage takes 33 days to complete the walk – trudging c15 miles per day - every day.
He began his journey yesterday Wednesday 26th and would have arrived in St Jean de Port (in France) lat last night and he expects, God willing, to collect his certificate on 3rd November in Santiago Compostella.
He starts this his ascent of the Pyrenees this morning from St Jean de Port (in France) and finishes at Santiago de Compostela in north west Spain. So please keep Pat in your prayers and thoughts during this time.
Pat is doing this to help the Kasiisi Porridge Project by raising funds for a huge water tank that will help make the project self-sustaining. If you'd like to sponsor him in his quest then click here to go to his JustGiving page.
Should you wish to follow his journey you'll find his blog (that he hopes to update) http://kasiisiporridge.org/category/pats-walk-2012/

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    Biggleswade Chronicle Village News


    The gospel last week Mark 8:27-35, has deep implications for our faith. When we asked about our faith we often assume anonymity as it is more convenient to repeat things previously learnt rather than expose our true understanding. Hence we become like the disciples in this scripture because when they were asked ’who I am’ by Jesus was they replied by repeating previous learnt, often incorrect statements. A personal reply would have consisted of experience, critical and profound thinking often perceived as threatening by others. The Lord has not just asked us to imitate His examples or practice His teachings, He would rather we were able to understand ‘why’ we should do so, and that Faith and Works are indeed inseparable. In this era there were not surveys and systematically evaluations to record what people believed. Peter was the only disciple who had the courage to give a personal response to Jesus’ question by saying “you are the Christ”. (Greek term Christ in Hebrew means Messiah, meaning Saviour). Jesus knew that the Disciples were looking forward to the coming of the Saviour; who was seen as a political leader and liberator.  So, He seized the occasion to make a conscious decision to correct their wrong idea by presenting them with the image of a suffering Messiah which was rejected by all elders. Unfortunately Peter reacted negatively to this and looked for an easier path, and in turn Jesus had to confront and oppose his views as to fulfil God’s plan. Today we could compare this to being upset by family member who opposes our view, later to only realizing they were right and then we are grateful for their integrity.
     
    Sunday 30th-Please support - All Parishioners are invited to walk under the Banner of ‘St. Peter’s on Sunday 30th September for the Diocesan Procession of Faith lead by Bishop Peter. To leave St.Peters at 12.15 to gather at 13.00 for 13.30 start at St.Josephs Church, Midland Road, Bedford. To be concluede with outdoor Benediction in Bedford Park.
     
    Carmelites in Beds-next meeting is on Wednesday 26th September start 6.30 pm. Guest speaker Canon John Udris speaking about Therese of Lisieux.
     
    Congratulations to Andrew for completing the sponsored Bike n’ Hike, sponership money  now being collected.
     
     
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    Minister Lists

    I have restored the pages for Readers and Eucharistic Ministers. Sue Laing, the Parish Secretary has taken over organising the lists after the sad death of Jenny Frodsham.

    I hope that Sue has not taken on too much . . .

    Chris
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    Biggleswade Chronicle Village News


    St Peter’s Catholic Church. Biggleswade. Just when Great Britain starts to celebrate the most successful Paralympics Games, this week’s gospel (Mark 7:31-37) tells us how Jesus heals a disabled man. Jesus was very precise in choosing his words as he prayed to God to heal the man who stood before him. This man was hearing impaired and without speech. He chose the word ‘ephphatha’ which means ‘be opened’, in this instance Jesus requested that God opened this man’s ears to sound and opened the pathway in his mouth so he could speak clearly. We all know of stories of the tragic cases of how some disabled people are walled in solitude.  We can also be placed in solitude as we become closed to the words of Jesus, to become deaf to His message by ignoring His preaching and ignoring his request to communicate with God and with each other. This can result in a loss of trust that often destroys our relationships with God and each other.  We often hear of relationships where people do not understand each other or no longer speak to each other.  Some people have reviewed their perception of the world because of Paralympics and by adjusting to the reality of disability they are now seeing a disability in a totally different way.  Jesus would like us to open our ears and loosen our tongues so that like the people who have learnt from the Paralympics we can remove barriers to commence a dialogue of salvation. Sacrament of Confirmation; If you would like to be considered for this Sacrament please complete the form in the church porch and return them to the Parish Office (in the Presbytery).16th September .6pm, St.Swithens Church Sandy. Invite everyone to a Songs of Praise as apart of their Diocesan Vision for Living Gods Love. Carmelites in Beds-next meeting is on Wednesday 26thSeptember start 6.30 pm. Day for Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist- 22nd September in Luton please contact the Parish Office for further details.Diocesan Procession of Faith Sunday 30th September lead by Bishop Peter. For information please see Church Porch for details.

    Please not that it is likely that the Harvest Super will be postponed, further information after the Social Club meeting on the 13th.
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    Hiatus

    Sorry some things are out of date on the website. I'll make it all better next week.

    Chris
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    Lectures - “Celebrating Vatican II”

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    Message from Fr Tad – Russia!

    Assignment: Russia

    On October 6, 2010, I arrived in St. Petersburg. In Russia. A country apparently well known, right? Not necessarily. A newcomer is likely to meet with numerous surprises here, even in that second largest city of Russia, and its “cultural capital”, as it is called due to its significant historical heritage, and, definitely, “the most western” Russian city, as far as its character is concerned. St. Petersburg is located at the mouth of the Neva River to the Gulf of Finland. The city is relatively young, it was founded in the beginning of the 18th century, when Tsar Peter I, called Peter the Great later, defeated the Swedes in the 12-year-war, and in the captured territory on the Baltic coast built a stronghold first, and then a city, which was later to become the country’s capital. The only Catholic major priestly seminary has its residence here, as well as the management of the SVD Ural Region, which includes Russia and Belarus. There are 11 confreres in St. Petersburg SVD community. The other SVDs are working in such Russian towns and cities as Gvardejsk near Kaliningrad, Moscow, Volgograd, Tambov, Irkutsk and Blagoveshtshensk, and Baranovitchi in Belarus. The area is huge and merely 40 SVDs are working there. What are their tasks? To minister to the Catholic population, which counts approximately about 1 million people, and to help realise various social projects connected with the upkeep of poor families and disabled persons, as well as immigrants whose number in Russia is steadily growing, especially in the areas bordering on Asian countries (among them the former Soviet republics) and in big cities, like Moscow and St. Petersburg. The native population keeps decreasing, which may be the result of a faulty family policy of the present government, as well as of the “sovietisation” of the country in the proceeding time of the country’s history. Most Russians declare that they belong to the Orthodox Church, even though there are quite few truly practicing- hence an expression used to refer to such lukewarm or seeming Christians: “Orthodox atheists”. The Roman Catholic Church in Russia is represented by the SVDs, Dominicans, Franciscans, Jesuits and Salesians. They came to Russia soon after the split of The Soviet Union and its fall in the nineties, in result of the so-called political and religious “meltdown”. Nowadays, a kind of stiffening of the authorities’ attitude toward the religious and clergy can be noticed, especially those coming from abroad, by introducing all kinds of administrative procedures and limitations visa and stay refusals, as well as not allowing the Church administration to be established in the country. There are not enough native Russians in the Church hierarchy, most of the leading posts are held by foreigners, for example the Archbishop of Moscow and St. Petersburg is an Italian, Rev. Paolo Pezzi. We have been facing all kinds of difficulties attempting to legally regaining the ownership of the church property, nationalized after the October Revolution, which is a condition to start the renovation of the BV Mary Visitation Parish Church (see: www.visitmaria.ru ). The SVD Ural Region is the only unit of the Society in Europe that has to be subsidized by the SVD General Management. What is more, the Orthodox Church has rather an ill-willing attitude toward Catholic missionaries. The Orthodox Church leaders view them as a kind of threat to the integrity of their Church, willing to take over members of their denomination. It is, in fact, not true, yet the Orthodox leaders keep exerting a kind of moral pressure on Russia’s authorities to force them make the situation of the Roman Catholic Church uncertain and difficult. On the other hand, the presence of Catholic missionaries constitutes a challenge to the Orthodox Church, letting them introduce practices rather not known or at least uncommon, like teaching religion to their young believers, which has always been strength of our Church. We do believe that even this is a positive aspect of our presence in Russia. Divine Word missionaries work in the seminary, they are also active in the local diocesan Church carrying out works connected with our charisma, like taking care of national minorities and the disabled or addicts.
    Fr. Tadeusz Panek svd

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    Message from Fr Tad – Poem for his Jubilee

    A very warm welcome to Father Tad


    A very warm welcome to Father Tad
    His presence here it makes us glad
    From Russia with love every July
    To sunny England he does fly.

    He lights up our church with his smile
    The way he bounds down in the aisle
    To say to us “Peace be with you”
    A handshake that is firm and true.

    On hot days he keeps him cool
    Visiting Biggleswade swimming pool
    He swims the breadth and then the length
    To build up stamina and strength.

    We look forward to his homily
    On the day of his jubilee
    25 years he has served our Lord
    Not one day has he ever been bored.

    We wish him well for his future goals
    Doing good and saving souls
    Maybe one day we will see
    His golden or diamond jubilee.

    From St. Petersburg to St. Peter’s
    Thousands of long kilometres
    We lift our glasses and we say
    Father Tad, “Na zdroviye”!



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    Message from Fr Tad – Battle of Russia

    “Battle of Russia”

    Help restore Russia’s Christian faith! There has been a religious vacuum in Russia since the fall of the Soviet Union, most Russians remain atheists- yet the Russian Orthodox Church which wishes to be regarded as Russia’s only genuine and national Church and restore Christianity in this country, fails to fulfil that role satisfactorily. Other churches, the Roman Catholic Church among them, want to help, yet with the Russian Orthodox Church’s hostile attitude and without the government’s full approval and support they fall short of their task to help spread and strengthen Christianity in Russia. The Society of the Divine Word is present on the Russian religious scene, working actively on the vast territory from St. Petersburg in the west till Blagoveshtshensk, on the Chinese border, in the Russian Far East. There is a shortage of people willing to co-operate, there is a shortage of financial means. Due to official statistics, in 2025 Russia will need at least 10 million immigrants to fill all jobs, for the number of the native people decreases severely. The majority of immigrants will surely come from Asia, from the former Soviet republics, bringing along with them the faith they profess- the Islam. Are you going to allow Russia, once Christian, to become another Islamic country because of the lack of Christian support. Help us win the Battle of Christian Russia!
    Steyler Bank, Sankt Augustin, Germany; Konto-Nr. 12 0985, BLZ: 386 215 00, BIC: GENODED1STB
    IBAN: DE 89 3862 1500 0000 1209 85

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    Apostleship of the Sea

    Apostleship of the Sea collection raised nearly £350 for this very important charity that supports all foreign people working on merchant ships to make contact with their family and loved ones back home and ensures that fair and decent working conditions are maintained. Considering that 95% of all British trade is carried by sea the physical and spiritual needs of the seafarers is paramount; thank you for your contribution.
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