Gerald and Pat Deakin, who were married at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Athersley, Barnsley in June, 1967, are pictured receiving their Papal Blessing from Fr Stan Maciuszek at St Mary’s, Penistone on the occasion of their Fiftieth Wedding Anniversary.
Archives for August 2017
Fr Stan Maciuszek presents John and Helen Civico with their Papal Blessing at St Mary’s, Penistone on the occasion of their Golden Wedding Anniversary.
On Wednesday, 31 May, a group of volunteers, including Fr Chris Posluszny, gathered to say a huge “Thank You” to Laura Claveria, St Marie’s Cathedral Heritage Engagement and Learning Officer. Over the last two and a half years, as part of Heritage Lottery Funding, Laura has worked with volunteers to promote the Cathedral and the many things it can offer. These include guided tours for adults and schools, exhibitions in both the Central Library and the Cathedral, new guide books, stewarding during the day and a number of outreach events. Fr Chris made a presentation and thanked her for her enthusiastic vision and her hard work and dedication. Everyone wished her well in her new job in Leeds. Pictured in the centre above wearing a white top, Laura is with many of St Marie’s volunteers and Fr Chris (front right).
Saturday, 20 May was a very special Christian Aid day at St Michael’s, Hathersage. We were delighted to welcome back forty five visitors from the Doncaster Conversation Club to our small church in the Hope Valley. They had visited us last September and clearly we hadn’t done too bad a job in welcoming them and plying them with both breakfast and lunch. Our visitors were young people, refugees from Afghanistan, Albania, Eritrea, Iran, Sudan, Vietnam, Pakistan, Ethiopia – and last but not least (and not quite so young) volunteers from Doncaster Conversation Club. It was lovely to see many familiar faces (and a very friendly dog) from last year and to welcome new friends. The Peak District National Park did us all proud by providing five Park Rangers, dressed in red, to guide a walk and make sure no-one got lost. Two young men, one on crutches and another in a wheel chair, put us to shame by completing more of the walk that anyone could have expected. The weather as always in the Peak District was not to be relied on. A short sharp shower as the group set off, and another as they neared the end of the walk, could have dampened spirits but only dampened coats. There was fun and laughter and cups of hot soup, sandwiches and cakes as the coats gently steamed on the pews. These are some quotes from the group: “Going to the Peak District gave me the opportunity to enjoy one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I wanted to stay there. It was impossible to see anyone without smiling.” “The location of the Church is very pleasant and the beautiful situation seemed to make the people friendly and calm.” “The food was delicious and the people were so lovely.” “I liked everything and very good soup. The hills are like Sudan…” “I’m happy today because good time. I taste delicious foods. Good people here. Thank you so much.” These are lovely words but what our visitors maybe don’t realise is that they gave us much more than we gave them. We had the privilege not only of sharing their stories and their anxieties but of welcoming them into our hearts and our church in the beautiful Peak District. We so hope they will come again. Thanks must go to our Parish Priest, Fr Martin Clayton and to members of both Hope Valley parishes – Our Lady of Sorrows, Bamford and St Michaels’s for making all this possible. Maria Kenyon
The Union of Catholic Mothers celebrated Mass at the Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Victories, Clowne on 23 May. Mrs Pat Marsh and Mrs Rachel Austick were enrolled into the UCM. Mrs Janice Walshe, who was a member of the Sacred Heart and Our Lady of Victories UCM, died in June. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends. May she rest in peace.
On Spring Bank Holiday Monday Fr Desmond Edozie, Parish Priest of St Alban’s, celebrated Mass at Denaby and Cadeby Miners Memorial Chapel in All Saints Church, Denaby Main. The Mass was attended by parishioners from St Alban’s and English Martyrs Parishes. Fr Desmond stated that, “It is important that we remember our miners who worked at Denaby Main and Cadeby Main Collieries. They and their families created the parish of St Alban’s in partnership with their priests and religious sisters. We are in their debt. A special thanks to Rev Reg Davies, Vicar of All Saints Parish, and his parishioners for allowing us to celebrate Mass in the Miners Memorial Chapel.”
Jane and Charles Perryman continue their series about Marriage When Pope Francis discusses the next aspect of love that St Paul highlights, “Love is not rude or arrogant” (1 Cor 13:5), he writes about the importance of gentleness, thoughtfulness and courtesy. Quoting the Mexican Nobel Prize winning poet, Octavio Paz he says that courtesy “is a school of sensitivity and disinterestedness” which requires a person “to develop his or her mind and feelings, learning how to listen, to speak and, at certain times, to keep quiet” (AL 99). The key here is listening. Over the years that we have been working with married and engaged couples we have come to believe that listening is probably the most important virtue that married couples must practise constantly. Married couples are called to intimacy. In the second chapter of Genesis God says, “it is not good for the man to be alone” (Gen 2:18). Man here should be understood as human beings. This is why God creates Eve, so that each will have a companion. They will be able to grow together. This is the meaning of the comment, “for this reason a man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife and they become one body” (Gen 2:24). We are created to be connected to others and it is in our marriages that we are called to be most closely connected. This is one of the greatest gifts of marriage – to be securely emotionally bonded to our spouse. It is through listening to our spouse that we build that deep intimacy. Listening, actively listening, goes far beyond the words we exchange. Indeed psychologists tell us that only 7% of the messages we communicate are conveyed by the words. The rest comes through facial expression, eye contact, body language and tone of voice. Active listening means looking out for all of the emotional reactions behind the words – the anxiety, disappointment, frustration or excitement. It means being on the alert for those things not said but only hinted at, but which are causing concern. Above all it means being prepared to be influenced by what we hear. It is no good understanding all that our spouse has to convey and then making no response. Of course not all conversation takes place at this deeper level. Ordinary everyday chit-chat is just that, chit-chat, small talk. Small talk is necessary and helps to keep in touch with each other. When, however, there is a serious matter to talk about then we need to be aware of what can get in the way of real listening. Firstly, there is timing. All couples who have raised a family know that when there are small children around you cannot have any serious conversation between tea time and bed time. We all have good times for serious conversation and times to avoid. We also need to avoid distractions. It is impossible to listen to someone with the television on in the same room – even if the sound is switched off! The biggest obstacle to real listening, however, is our own disposition. If we don’t want to listen, if we are not open to listening, then we won’t. Mostly what gets in the way of listening is fear; fear that we may hear something that we won’t like; fear that if we really listened to our spouse we would be called to change. Putting aside our own fears in order to really understand our spouse is very challenging. How do we know if we are good as a listener? The key here is that we cannot be certain for ourselves. The only person who can say that that we are a good listener is the person that we are listening to. Only they can say if they have the experience of being listened to. For example, if Charles thinks that he listens well to Jane but Jane does not have the experience of being heard and understood, real listening is not happening. We need to be courageous enough to ask our spouse how well they think we do as a listener and to ask about the areas where we do not listen well. Quoting St Thomas Aquinas, Pope Francis says that an essential requirement of love is that, “every human being is bound to live agreeably with those around him. Every day, entering into the life of another, even when that person already has a part to play in our life, demands the sensitivity and restraint which can renew trust and respect.” (AL 99). We don’t think that Francis expects that couples will agree all the time about everything. Indeed, John Gottman, the founder of the Relationship Research Institute at the University of Washington, says that 85% of happily married couples have irreconcilable differences. What Francis does call for is that couples live agreeably with their differences and manage them together. That degree of peaceable living is only achieved by deep understanding of one another, through attentive listening to each other.
Frank James stands by the plaque, which commemorates the opening of St Joseph’s, Staveley in July, 1933. Frank witnessed the stone being laid when he was a 12 year old altar boy at the church.