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Today’s Gospel in Art – It is to your advantage that I go away

Farewell, by Edmund Blair Leighton 1922 © Williamson Art Gallery & Museum, Wirral, UKGospel of 19th May 2020 – John 16:5-11 Jesus said, ‘Now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, “Where are you going?” But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, …

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Pope sends message to Polish young people, on centenary of St John Paul II

Pope John Paul II 1985In a video message sent on Monday, Pope Francis urged the young people of Poland – and youth around the world – to let Christ enter every aspect of their lives. His message came on the evening of 18 May, which marks 100 years since the birth of Karol Wojtyla, the future Pope Saint John Paul II.

“Saint John Paul II was a gift of God to the Church and to Poland, your motherland. His earthly…

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Jersey: Walker raises vital funds for global coronavirus response

A supporter on Jersey has raised over £1,300 for CAFOD’s coronavirus response by walking 26,000 steps around the island. On Friday 8 May, Michelle Cuthbert, from Jersey, embarked on an epic sponsored walk where she clocked up 26,000 steps to fundraise for the international development charity CAFOD, who have just launched a global coronavirus appeal.

Michelle said: “I recently heard abou…

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Bishop Paul Mason on Mental Health Awareness Week

Bishop Paul MasonHosted by the Mental Health Foundation, Mental Health Awareness Week will take place from 18-24 May 2020. The theme for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week is Kindness.

Bishop Paul Mason, Lead Bishop for Healthcare and Mental Health, said: “This year’s Mental Health Awareness week feels more important than ever as we find ourselves faced with a global health crisis which will, undoub…

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Liverpool: Bishop Vincent Malone dies of Covid-19

Bishop Vincent MaloneThe Archdiocese of Liverpool has announced the death of the Right Reverend Vincent Malone, Auxiliary Bishop Emeritus of Liverpool and Titular Bishop of Abora. Bishop Malone died this morning, Monday 18 May, at the Royal Liverpool Hospital. He was admitted to hospital after testing positive for Covid-19 last week.

Upon hearing the news, Cardinal Vincent Nichols remembered with the “endless…

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CAFOD on-line events to celebrate Laudato Si’ anniversary

This week marks the fifth anniversary of Pope Francis Encyclical Laudato Si’. CAFOD has planned three exciting online events to celebrate this milestone.

Tuesday 19 May 11am Laudato Si’ Volunteer Prayer and Chat. Let’s come together online in prayer and reflection on caring for our common home. This online meeting will include a Bible reading, chance to reflec…

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Stella Maris supports cruise ship workers during pandemic

The head of Portsmouth Catholic Diocese has sent a message of support and prayed for cruise ship workers currently on ships off the South Coast of England.

Addressing cruise ship workers of P&O Cruises and Cunard in a video recorded at St John’s Cathedral, Portsmouth, Bishop Philip Egan said his thoughts and prayers were very much with them at this time of crisis.

“Many are in lockd…

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Faith groups call for a just recovery by divesting from fossil fuels

Coal powered power stations in PolandAs major challenges for the global economy are predicted in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, a diverse group of faith institutions is putting the call for a just economic recovery into practice.

Today, 42 faith institutions from 14 countries, including 21 from the UK, announce their divestment from fossil fuels. This is the largest-ever joint announcement of divestment from fossil fu…

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St Dunstan

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Saint Of The DayBenedictine monk and reformer, Archbishop of Canterbury. Patron of goldsmiths, jewellers and locksmiths. Born in 909 at Baltonsborough, near Glastonbury, he was educated at Glastonbury and then after a spell of working for his uncle, joined the court of King Athelstan. In 935 he was expelled for studying pagan poetry and being a musician.

For a time he considered marriage, but eventually decided to become a priest. He lived for a while as a hermit, doing metalwork and painting. In 939, Edmund became king of Wessex and installed him as abbot of Glastonbury.

Monastic life in England had virtually died during the Danish invasions, but under his rule it was reborn and would thrive until the Reformation. Dunstan refounded many abbeys including Malmesbury, Westminster, Bath and Exeter.

In 970 a conference of bishops, abbots and abbesses drew up a national code of monastic observance based on the Rule of St Benedict. St Dunstan was principle advisor to all the Wessex kings of his time.

During the reign of the youthful Edwy, he was banished abroad. Edgar recalled him and in 959 he was made Archbishop of Canterbury. The present coronation rite derives from the one complied and used by St Dunstan for King Edgar. Besides his pastoral ministry, his monastic organisation and reform of church life, St Dunstan had many other gifts. He was an accomplished metalworker and bellfounder. He played the harp and loved to sing. When he sang at Mass, a contemporary wrote: “He seemed to be talking with the Lord face to face.”

As an old man he took delight in teaching the boys at the cathedral school. He was described as a gentle teacher, much loved by his pupils. His emblem in art is a pair of tongs – which he used, according to legend to seize the nose of the Devil.

On Ascension Day in 988, he preached three times. Two days later, on 19 May, he died. His cult sprang up spontaneously, and grew rapidly, making him one of England’s most important saints. It has been said that the 10th century gave shape to English history, and St Dunstan gave shape to the 10th century.