Last month’s Hallam News explored the options for ongoing adult formation in the diocese. One programme which has been running for many years, but which has been reviewed, updated and relaunched this year, is the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies or CCRS. If you are a teacher in a Catholic School, involved in lay ministry (particularly catechesis or lay leadership) or feel that your personal faith would benefit from structured study of the scripture and theology, now is the time to find out more and apply. The 2015-2016 course starts in September and registration is now open. No previous experience in theology is needed. On completing the course, one student told us, “I learnt more than I could have imagined. The course has enabled me to ask the questions I have always wanted to ask – this opportunity rarely presents itself in everyday life.” What is it? The CCRS course introduces the basics of Christian theology and faith from a Catholic perspective, and also provides a basis for further study. It is validated by the Board of Religious Studies of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, which awards the certificate to those who successfully complete the course. Six core modules cover the Old and New Testaments, Jesus Christ, The Church, Sacraments and Morality. Two specialist modules are chosen including an option for professional development modules in Catholic religious education. In previous years we have run modules on liturgy, ecumenism, spirituality and Catholic Social Teaching. This year a new module on Celtic Christianity was added, looking at the early evangelisation of these islands and what we might learn for today’s Church and our own faith. The course runs over 2 years with 8 sessions on Saturday mornings across each year. These include a mix of teaching, discussion, exercises and reflection. Modules can be deferred and spread over up to 5 years. It’s serious study, but fun and rewarding. “I’ve really enjoyed the course so far,” said Peter, who has just completed the programme. “It really helps affirm your faith when you understand what you believe and why.” Who is it for? The CCRS programme is open to everyone. For teachers and those involved in religious education in schools, it gives a nationally recognised qualification and is recommended for anyone teaching in a Catholic school. Catechists, readers and those involved in various parish ministries have the opportunity not only to discover more about the theology behind church teaching, but to reflect on how it relates with their ministry, on their own and with other participants. Of course, many adults simply take the course to deepen their own faith understanding. Some, like Margaret, have found it addresses long-held needs: “I’m thoroughly enjoying doing the course … it is making me think about my faith and is providing some long overdue answers to questions and uncertainties that I have had for too many years. It’s also challenging me to think about being more active as a Church member rather than waiting for others to take the lead.” For others it is a way to explore the riches of the Catholic tradition. Lindsay was received into the Catholic Church three years ago and says that the course is challenging but very stimulating: “I am finding it is enriching my faith as well as giving me insight into the history and tradition of Catholicism. The teaching we receive each month is excellent. Hard work – but very rewarding.” Costs and Enrolment From September 2016, each Module costs £50 (£25 concessions) which includes all tuition, worksheets and assignments. There is also a £20 national CCRS registration fee. Sessions take place at the Hallam Pastoral Centre in Sheffield, which is easily accessible and has ample parking, good teaching rooms and a well-stocked library for students. You can enrol for the CCRS and find our more on the diocesan website: https://hallam-diocese.com/departments/adult-formation. Or by email: email@example.com. Or you can contact us here: Adult Education Office, Hallam Pastoral Centre, St Charles Street, Sheffield, S9 3WU, Tel 0114 2566410. “I would recommend it to all, whether it be for professional development within education or for spiritual and personal development.” Catherine (teacher)
Archives for July 2016
During the early months of the Second World War, Wilf Doyle was evacuated from his native Sheffield and went to live in rural Leicestershire. He started serving on the altar at St Gregory and Saint Alban’s in Sileby during 1940. He must have proved to be a bit too much for the rural community, because after a couple of years they shipped him back to Sheffield where he continued his ministry at St Marie’s, now the Cathedral of the Hallam Diocese. In 1945 Wilf was enrolled in the Guild of St Stephen and remained at St Marie’s for twenty-two years. In 1964 he moved to Leicester and served at the Immaculate Conception until 1984, when he moved to Markfield and became MC at the Sacred Heart in Leicester. He remained there until 1998 when he moved back to the church where he had served fifty-eight years earlier. He has been responsible for training generations of altar servers, providing a glowing example to the young servers of today. He is one of small select band of servers who have been awarded the gold medal of the Guild of St Stephen. On Christmas Day Wilf celebrated seventy-five years as an altar server. This must surely be some sort of a record.
People of all ages continue to support St Wilfrid’s Centre for homeless and vulnerable people, but increasing numbers of young people are beginning to be aware of the great work done at the Centre. Recently St Wilfrid’s Centre were delighted to receive a call from the mother of Eve, age 8 who wanted to run the Yorkshire Junior Fun Run in aid of St Wilfrid’s. Eve trained and ran the 1.5k on 10 April, collected sponsor money and managed to raise £170 in aid of the charity. Thank you also to a group of Meadowhead School pupils who donated half their earnings to St Wilf’s when they worked on a project making aprons from recycled products for school. Their help is very much appreciated.
Nineteen children celebrated their First Communion recently at St Hugh’s, Chesterfield. Due to the large number of children two First Communion days were held to accommodate all the families in church and to keep each day as a community event. It was standing room only on both occasions. The children took responsibility for all the readings, bidding prayers and Offertory procession. Towards the end of Mass the children came forward each carrying a tea light candle and sang, ‘Share the Light of Jesus.’ Fr Joseph Okeke, Parish Priest, congratulated the children and their families and thanked the catechists, Sandra Asquith and Karena Moore, for all their hard work and dedication in taking the children through the preparation programme.
A counselling project in Chesterfield has now been running for just over a year. Feedback from the twelve people who have used this service has been consistently positive. Coping With Loss is a free service provided by Hallam Caring Services and aims to address some of the needs of adults who are experiencing difficulties because of any kind of loss – bereavement, separation, divorce, health, employment, trust. Our counsellor, experienced volunteer, Catherine Hand, is based at St Joseph’s Convent, Newbold Road, S41 7PL. The venue is accessible by a regular bus service and there is onsite parking. For an appointment please contact Catherine on 01298 872645.
Following Bishop Ralph’s recent article and the follow-up about Liturgy in the absence of a priest, those who would like to look into this whole area a little deeper might find the Irish National Centre for Liturgy’s book, IT IS GOOD FOR US TO BE HERE, published by Veritas (ISBN 978 1 84730 634 0) very useful. Seven short articles cover many of the topics which priests and parishioners may well be discussing already.
We are a small group who are looking at the possibility of creating a ‘Seed Group’ for a L’Arche Community in the Sheffield area. In a world that values winning and coming first L’Arche Communities are places where people can discover who they are and not just what they can do. There are currently eleven L’Arche Communities in the UK, where people with and without learning disabilities share life together, living and/or working in community. All are part of the International Federation of L’Arche, which was founded by Templeton Laureate, Jean Vanier. Although grounded in Christian tradition, L’Arche Communities welcome people of all faiths and none: their vision is a world where all belong. For more information about L’Arche go to www.larche.org.uk. Do YOU have an interest in ways of creating supportive spiritual communities for people with learning disabilities? Are YOU interested in meeting up with others to explore the possibility of this type of project in the Sheffield region? If so please contact either Alan Hurford, firstname.lastname@example.org, or 07847436515; Kate Marks email@example.com, Romayne Gayton, Romayne17@yahoo.co.uk, or Laura Kerr, firstname.lastname@example.org, to register an interest and for more information.
Join Youth 2000 & young people from across Hallam and the rest of the country for ‘The Release’ A residential retreat in our very own diocese. 28th – 30th October 2016 St Bernard’s Catholic High School, Rotherham S65 3BE The programme will include engaging talks, lively music, workshops, discussions, powerful prayer times, evening entertainment and […]
When Steven Willows became the Apostleship of the Sea port chaplain to Immingham, the first thing that struck him was how big some of the ships were and how small the number of crew. “I remember being shown around the galley, the engine room and the bridge and just being in awe of these ships. When I heard of the amount of time the seafarers spent on the ships and the need for a way to communicate with their families back home, it began to sink in how I had been taking for granted the ease of communication with my own family,” he said. 10 July is Sea Sunday, when the Church asks us to pray for and support the work of Apostleship of the Sea, whose chaplains and ship visitors provide pastoral care and spiritual support to seafarers. Steven was a community support worker for adults with autism before becoming a port chaplain. He admitted that his knowledge about seafarers was very limited before joining Apostleship of the Sea. “It was something I had not really stopped to think about. Since then, I have learnt a lot about the industry and still keep learning something new regularly.” Not all ship owners are good employers, he has discovered. “It always surprises me when there are seafarers that have not been paid for months. It just makes you wonder how the family back home have managed for maybe two or three months without money coming to them.” The most rewarding part of his work is being able provide help to seafarers, he said. “Most of the time you do not see the crew again, so you don’t know the end result. It’s amazing that what seems like an ordinary conversation with someone can mean something extraordinary to them and make a difference to their day. Out of all the corporal works of mercy, welcoming the stranger is the one that stands out to me as the one we do on a daily basis and it is always rewarding.”
Winifred Robinson, a much loved member of the Union of Catholic Mothers in St Catherine’s Foundation in Sheffield, died recently at the age of 91. She was a very active member, having various posts as Diocesan Media Officer, President of the Central Council and also represented the UCM at the Women’s World Day of Prayer. Winnie is pictured with her husband, Ken. May she rest in peace.