Prayer Intentions

During Easter we are asked to pray for these intentions: New Members of the Church; Vocations; The Right Use of the Media; Survivors of Abuse; the Church; Human Work.


Important Notice - Change of Sunday Mass Times

  • As from Sunday 5th May there will be no Sunday 8:00am mass at St Francis Church.
  • The Sunday 9:45am mass at St Francis Church will be moved to start at the earlier time of 9:30am.

This has been discussed in the parish council, please feel free to share your opinions to any of the brothers. There are masses at the Curzon Park Abbey each day at 8:00am and all the masses are open to everyone.

The small change of 9.45am mass to 9.30am will give the English community a few extra minutes for coffee morning before the Polish community arrives for mass.

Sunday Mass Times (from Sunday 5th May 2024)

  • Saturday 6:30pm - Vigil Mass in English
  • Sunday 9:30am - Family Mass in English
  • Sunday 12:00pm - Polish Family Mass
  • Sunday 4:30pm - Polish Mass

Mass Times at Curzon Park Abbey

  • Every day at 8:00am - In English, all are welcome


Lourdes Overland via Jumbulance
Thursday 30th May - Saturday 9th June 2024
Thursday 15th - Saturday 24th August 2024

Tony Murphy will make an appeal for a nurse, helpers and sick and disabled pilgrims for the two local Across Groups that go to Lourdes by Jumbulance. Wirral Group travel from Thursday 30th May to Saturday 8th June. Chester Group travel from Thursday 15th to Saturday 24th August and Brother John Cavanagh is the Chaplain. A second collection will be made at all masses, the weekend of 27th/28th April.

Franciscan Brother John Cavanagh is Chaplain. Cost including a kitty and insurance is £1,095. Nurses and young people in full time education pay half price. Help may be available if people cannot afford the full amount. Travel insurance is available for just £65.

For further information, visit www.across.org.uk or contact Tony Murphy 07881 656974 or email tonymurphyefc2002@yahoo.co.uk


Further Threat to the Unborn of Abortion up to Birth

In the next couple of weeks an attempt is to be made to widely decriminalise abortion up to the birth. This is a further assault on the sanctity of human life in our society. This extreme amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill is being made by Diana Johnson MP and parliamentarians will be under pressure to support the amendment on grounds of compassion for mothers who seek to abort their unborn child beyond the legal limits.

The effect would be to withdraw legal protection from the unborn. It is important to make our voice heard in support of the unborn child. The Right to Life website has details under ‘Take Action’ which enables you to find and contact your MP directly and the website of the Society for the Protection of Unborn Children has helpful information under ‘Resources.’ The Right to Life website also has details of an alternative amendment by Caroline Ansell MP to reduce the legal limit for abortion from 24 to 22 weeks on the basis of the increased survival rates for babies being born at 22 and 23 weeks. We cannot doubt the impact which your e-mail or letter will have in making known opposition to decriminalizing abortion up to birth and in support of the value of every human life.

https://righttolife.org.uk/littlefighters

https://www.spuc.org.uk/

Mark – Bishop of Shrewsbury

Please contact your Member of Parliament to ask that they oppose the decriminalization of abortion up to birth:

SAMANTHA DIXON
Parliamentary office
House of Commons
London
SW1A 0AA
Phone: 020 7219 3000
Email: Samantha.dixon.mp@parliament.uk
Constituency Office
Phone: 01244 343229


Br Prins 25th Anniversary

You will remember Br Prins who was Parish Priest at St. Francis a few years ago. On 10th April this year it was 25 years to the day since he was ordained to the Priesthood. Can we remember him in our prayers and this special day as he celebrates such a wonderful achievement.


Car Parking at St Francis Church

Please note the following and many thanks for your co-operation.

  • Car park is for Church and Hall use only.
  • Park your car prudently using every available space. For those who are arriving first please use the spaces against the wall not the front spaces.
  • Any regular parishioners using the car park out of service time must inform one of the brothers using any medium of communication to avoid confusions.


Gift Aid Envelopes 2024-25

Boxes of envelopes for the coming year will be placed on the table at the back of the church shortly. Please would you collect your box after Mass. For those people not taking part in the Gift Aid Scheme, or those regularly completing the white individual envelopes each week, if you wish to participate in the scheme and obtain a box of weekly envelopes a special form is available from the Parish Priest. Please complete, sign and date the form and hand it back to the Parish Priest after Mass.

Please also let us know if your circumstances have changed, ie you are no longer a taxpayer or if you have had a change of address since the last envelopes were issued, again please inform the Parish Priest. For every £1 donated by a taxpayer the Parish can claim 25p from H M Revenue & Customs.


Sacrament of Confirmation
Friday 8th November 2024

The next Chester parishes Sacrament of Confirmation will be on Friday, 8th November, 2024. Preparation for the Sacrament of Confirmation will be led by St. Columba and St. Theresa's Confirmation team.

Any one who is currently at high school may be Confirmed in November, with no upper age limit. If you wish to be Confirmed please email stcolumbatheresaconfirmation@hotmail.co.uk to register and receive further information about the preparation program. Please say in your email if you are over 18, as adults will be prepared separately.


The Rosary

The Rosary will be recited at 11.30am Monday to Thursday. If you would like to volunteer to lead the Rosary please contact Br Jinson. All are welcome to join in.

The prayers that compose the Rosary are arranged in sets of ten Hail Marys, called "decades". Each decade is preceded by one Lord's Prayer, and traditionally followed by one Glory Be.

Usually, five decades are recited in a session. Each decade provides an opportunity to meditate on one of the Mysteries of the Rosary, which recall events in the lives of Jesus Christ and his mother Mary.

Wikipedia contains a series on the Rosary of the Catholic Church available via this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosary


Monthly First Friday Devotion
Friday 7th June 2024

Join us for First Friday Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, following the 10.30am Stations of the Cross in St Francis Church, in front of the Sacred Heart statue of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The statue depicts the Sacred Heart of Jesus, a representation of the love of Christ, devotion to which, although it first appeared explicitly in the late 13th century, only became widespread after the Napoleonic Wars.

It was declared a universal feast of the Church in 1856, and in 1875, the year our church was opened, Pope Pius IX exhorted all Catholics to consecrate themselves to the Sacred Heart. It might be considered a visual portrayal of the same sense of Jesus's overflowing love for mankind as is conveyed in the words of Methodist hymns dating from the same era.


Monthly First Saturday Devotion
Saturday 1st June 2024

Join us for First Saturday Devotion to The Immaculate Heart Of Mary. Prayers will be led by members of The St Francis Prayer Group. Part of The Holy Rosary will be said in different languages. Anyone who would like to lead a decade of the Holy Rosary is welcome to come forward.


An Update on Br Jim

Br Jim is thankfully no longer in the hospital and is currently at Florence Grogan House in Blacon for some respite care after which it is hoped that he will return to the Friary. The address of where he is: Florence Grogan House, Shelley Road, Blacon, Chester, CH1 5XA. Please feel free to visit Br Jim whilst he is in respite at Florence Grogan House. Once he is back at the Friary a notice will be put in the newsletter.


A Day for Catechists in the Diocese of Shrewsbury
Saturday, 18th May 2024

The Department of Catechesis and Promotion of the Vocation of Marriage is pleased to announce a Diocesan conference specifically aimed at catechists who are involved in preparing young people for the Sacrament of Confirmation.

The day is being run by the Dominican Sisters of St Joseph, a group of experienced and visionary catechists who have conducted a number of inspiring and highly enjoyable days for us already within the diocese. We are particularly blessed that Bishop Mark will be joining us for the day.

The conference is on Saturday 18th May 2024 from 10am till 4pm and is to be held in the Parish Centre of St Mary's RC Church, Crewe.

The event is free of charge.

For more details and to book your place, please follow the Eventbrite link below:: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/a-day-for-catechists-in-the-diocese-of-shrewsbury-tickets-851383700567


English Catholic History Associaton
Visit to Holywell
Saturday 25th May 2024

Dear St Francis Church, Chester

I hope that this finds you well. My name is William King and I am the secretary of the English Catholic History Association. I was wondering if any of your parishioners would be interested in taking part in one of our forthcoming events?

We haven't organised an in-person visit for several years, so I was very keen to organise an event in 2024. We are going to Holywell on 25th May and I would be very happy if people from parishes in Chester would be able to join us. I am sure that many of your parishioners will have been already, but I still thought it worthwhile to ask. We have arranged for a tour at the Well, an optional lunch at the convent guest house and a tour and talk at St Winefride's Catholic Church.

It is only £8 for non-members, plus £15 in cash for the Bridgettine Sisters if they would like to take lunch with them. Payment by cheque or bank transfer (details for the latter available from myself). A link to the booking form is below. I do hope that some of your parishioners will be able to join us. Please return booking forms by 25th March 2024.

[Visit to Holywell - Booking Form]

Regards, William King, Secretary


St Francis' Repository

Many thanks to everyone who has given to our Repository - this all contributes to the upkeep of our Church and we are most grateful. Please keep bringing them in and we will lovingly restore them! We would especially welcome any unwanted holy items such as statues, crosses, medals and rosary beads.

A good stock of Mass, Prayer and general cards are all available and Holy Water direct from Lourdes! Please feel welcome to browse!

Why not come along and have a look and buy someone special a present!
Additional photos on our 'Gallery' page.


Help Father Francis Feed The Starving

If you are thinking of a present for someone how about buying an article of Fr. Francis' crochet, a coat, a shawl, a slipper or a mitten. You will be helping him raise money for the starving children in the world. They can be bought from the display at the back of the Church.


A Prayer To The Holy Spirit

At the end of year 2022 I asked the Holy Spirit, my best Friend, to help me write a prayer I could recite every day to keep me closer to the Blessed Trinity and get me to Heaven.

This is the prayer He inspired me to write. I give it to everyone who comes to confession to me. You may like to say it too.

Heavenly Father, with the help of your Holy Spirit, may I lead the best life I can today. When the time comes for me to take my last earthly breath, may I be surrounded by Your loving arms. On the day of my death may I hear your Son say to me, "I promise you this very day you will be with me in Paradise."

Father Francis OFM Cap, November 2023

Several of Father Francis' books and publications are now available for sale from the repository at St Francis Church.

A full list of Father Francis' books and publications are available on this link: Books by Father Francis

Father Francis prepared a special homily for All Souls Day which is exclusively avaiilable in the Library page of our website. Here is a link which will take you to the homily on our Library page.


Vocation Promotion

Let us all pray together for the promotion of more vocations to the Priesthood. There are a number of cards at the back of the Church with a prayer attached please take one.


St Francis Holy Hour

We will be meeting weekly for a Holy Hour to pray, to reflect and to share. We pray for our parish and our country in the sacramental presence of our Lord. We reflect on inspired readings and most of all on God’s Word. We share our thoughts and life experiences as Christian brothers and sisters. You are more than welcome to join in weekly, or bi-weekly or just once in a while when you can make it on Thursday evenings from 6:30 p.m. in the Church (Entry via the green door at the left hand side of the Church).

If you have questions call 01244 351331. See you there!


New Podcast Available

We continue our reflections on Vatican II, in Part III On The Church. This time, we ask the question: ‘Why is the Church?’ Why does she exist...? The Council's answer is that her mission is to call all people of all times to holiness, which is why she must evangelise. What this means for us is given in Lumen Gentium Chaps 5 and 6, taken together. Podcast 9 and its handout are now available on the diocesan website at www.dioceseofshrewsbury.org/news-events.

A leaflet outlining the content of all of the podcasts is available in the parish. If you have difficulty accessing this material or have questions and reflections, please don’t hesitate to contact Barbara via Email: barbara.davies@dioceseofshrewsbury.org or Telephone: 07730 526821.


Confession - The Sacrament of Reconciliation

As from Saturday 7th January 2023 the start time of the Saturday afternoon confession changed from 4:00pm to 6:00pm. Confessions will be heard starting at 6:00pm for half an hour before the 6:30pm mass. See the table below:

  • Friday 11:00am - 12:00pm
  • Saturday 11:00am - 12:00pm
  • Saturday 4:00pm - 4:30pm (Up to Saturday 31st December 2022)
  • Saturday 6:00pm - 6:30pm (From Saturday 7th January 2023)
  • Confessions available on request. As long as there is a Priest available within the Friary the sacrament of reconciliation can be heard any time by going to the green door in the car park.

  • CAFOD Volunteers Wanted

    The church relies on people getting involved. Our church, our world needs you. Could you be more involved in the life of our church? What aspects of church brings you life or joy? Could you give a bit of time to help those parts flourish?

    CAFOD, the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development, are looking for people to give some time and join them in their mission. Could you help in our parish, bringing people together to help build a better world or help by visiting local schools? Or raise a voice and campaign for justice or perhaps speak for CAFOD throughout the diocese? Could you support local volunteers or share your office skills to help CAFOD keep costs low? Training and support is provided.

    See www.cafod.org.uk/Volunteer for more information or get in touch via our email address shrewsbury@cafod.org.uk or by phoning 07920 232936


    Holy Days Of Obligation 2024

    Click on this link to the Liturgy Office for further information and a list of Liturgical Dates.

    Date                                         Holy Day (click on the name to find out further information) Weekday Mass Times - 12 Noon in English and 7.00pm in Polish
    5th JanuaryEpiphany Of The Lord
    5th MarchAsh Wednesday
    20th AprilEaster Sunday
    29th MayAscension Of The Lord
    8th JunePentecost
    22nd JuneCorpus Christi - The Body and Blood of the Lord
    29th JuneSt Peter & St Paul
    15th AugustAssumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
    2nd NovemberAll Saints
    30th NovemberFirst Sunday of Advent
    25th DecemberChristmas, the Nativity of Our Lord


    'Pray the Rosary without Distractions' by Father Francis Maple

    Our very own Father Francis has published books on Amazon UK.

    Do you have difficulty in praying the rosary? If you do, you may find this book helpful. Praying the rosary as described in this book will help you to cut out distractions. You will find that for every Hail Mary there is a thought or picture to keep your mind concentrated on what you are saying.

    The paperback book is now available for sale from the repository of St Francis Church priced at £5.00.

    The book is also available in Paperback from Amazon UK - Here

    The book is available in Kindle format from Amazon UK - Here

    A list of books written by Father Francis and published by Amazon UK is available - Here

    A link to Father Francis' own website can be found - Here

    If you don't have an Amazon UK account an order form can be downloaded - Here


    'Capuchin Friars in Chester' - Our Facebook Page

    Here is the link to our official parish website on Facebook called 'Capuchin Friars in Chester'.
    If you have a Facebook account click on the link below to follow and like the page.
    There will be items published in both, Polish and English.

    www.facebook.com/capuchinsinchester/

    Here is a wonderful video from our Facebook page called 'Christ is risen!/Chrystus Zmartwychwstal!'


    Visits To The Sick and Elderly

    Br. Jinson has been visiting and taking Holy Communion to the sick and elderly of the Parish. He is happy to do this going forward. If anyone would like Br. Jinson to visit a sick or elderly family member please contact him at St. Francis Church on telephone number Chester (01244) 315331 or via his email jinsoncap@gmail.com to make a convenient appointment for him to call.


    Materials For Reflection Following The Synodal Submissions

    In submissions to the Synodal Process, many people expressed a desire for formation in e.g. Scripture, spirituality and, specifically, the teachings of the Second Vatican Council. To meet these requests, the Department for Evangelisation is offering an introduction to the Council, together with a presentation of two of its major Documents: Dei Verbum (on Revelation) and Lumen Gentium (on the Church). The aim is simply to give an overview of both documents, and enough insight into their content and ongoing importance to encourage people to read the texts for themselves, copies of both of which are available at the CTS or on the Vatican website.

    This presentation will take the form of a recorded conversation between Miss Barbara Davies (Coordinator for New Evangelisation) and Dr Stephen Yates (Senior Mission Catechist). The mp3 audio file will be available on the diocesan website from the beginning of Lent; the material will not, however, be time-bound. Printable handouts will enable individual and group reflection. For further information, please contact either Barbara (07730 526821) or Stephen (07842 487978).

    An Online Course On Vatican II

    An online course on Vatican II: In response to Synodal Submissions, the Diocese is offering a series of short podcasts throughout Lent. Accessible on the diocesan website at dioceseofshrewsbury.org they are not time-bound and may be listened to anytime. You will also find handouts there on various topics, whilst a leaflet outlining the content of the recordings is available in the parish.

    Online course on Vatican II: Part III The Church. The first podcast on Lumen Gentium is now available at dioceseofshrewsbury.org. together with 3 handouts for downloading or printing: An Introduction to LG; A visual presentation of its 8 chapters; An outline of issues addressed in it. A leaflet outlining the content of all of the podcasts in the series is available in the parish.

    Should you have difficulty accessing this material, any questions or reflections, please don't hesitate to call Barbara Davies on 07730 526821.


    Prayer For Peace

    O Prince of peace, one more we hear the guns of war. Once again we see the faces of frightened children. We pray for the people of Ukraine, that they may be granted peace. We pray for the people of Russia, that they may demand peace. We pray for our country, that we may be a positive part of peace-making in the world.

    O Prince of peace, lead us from this dark time to a deeper understanding of the global family, so that all may break bread together in the secure embrace of peace. Amen.


    Caritas Newsletter

    The word Caritas comes from Latin, and means love and compassion. Inspired by Catholic faith, Caritas is the helping hand of the Church – reaching out to the poor, vulnerable and excluded, regardless of race or religion, to build a world based on justice and fraternal love. Today they serve in 18 countries, working through 67 partnerships in communities to bring hope, support and compassion to the world's most vulnerable people.

    Their newsletter is available to view and download by clicking on this link Caritas Newsletter

    The Diocese of Shrewsbury Caritas website is available by clicking here.


    Anniversaries

    Prayers are requested for those whose anniversaries occur this month   ✟  Requiescat in Pace  ✟
    To view anniversaries for the whole year visit our Prayers Page


    Sick Parishioners

    Please let us remember our sick parishioners in our prayers:

    Terry Halpin, Kath Heffeman, Barbara Edwards, Kevin Roberts, Margaret Davis, Hilary Linty, Patrick Hannah, Elle Mae Dunne, Elaine Bruce, Christopher Browne, Gill Wright, Emma Noble, Eleanor Milan, Colette Lazenby, Rita James, Janka Whitlock and Rose Kane.


    Feast Days

    The 'Feast Days' page has been added to the main menubar. There is now a direct link to the Wiki page for each feast day. Just click the name to open up the information in a new tab.
    To view feast days for the whole year visit our Feast Days


    Sacristans Wanted

    St. Francis Church are looking for Sacristans, men or women, who can arrange and serve at Holy Mass either daily or days to be arranged. Please speak with Br Jinson for further details.


    Singers Wanted for Sunday 9:45am Mass Choir

    Anyone who loves singing and would like to join the new Sunday 9:45am Mass Choir, please see Peter Cooke after the 9:45am Sunday mass.


    Chester Pastoral Forum

    After the initial meeting of the ‘Chester Pastoral Forum’ which took place on 22nd October 2018 we have decided to improve the communication between the Catholic Parishes in Chester. From this week onward on our parish noticeboard next to our parish newsletter we will put the newsletters from all other parishes, so every our parishioner would be able to see what is going on in Catholic Parishes in Chester. On our website we have added links to the Chester Church websites below.

    Links to Chester Catholic Church Websites

    • St Clare's Catholic Church, Downsfield Road, Chester, CH4 8HH
    • St Werburgh's Catholic Church, Grosvenor Park Road, Chester, CH1 1QJ
    • St Columba's Catholic Church, Plas Newton Lane, Chester, CH2 1SA
    • St. Theresa’s Catholic Church, 128 Blacon Avenue, Blacon, Chester, CH1 5BU

    • Franciscans In Chester: St Francis' Church and Friary Photographs Wanted

      They say that a photograph is worth a thousand words. We are currently looking for any photographs of St Francis Church and St Francis Roman Catholic school in Cuppin Street, 'the Sisters' (ie the Faithful Companions of Jesus from Dee House) or other teachers and pupils at the school. Any photographs used will be credited, scanned and made available on-line as part of the history of St Francis School and Church. Please pass any photographs in and envelope with your name, address and a contact number to one of the Brothers. We will simply scan which photographs we wish to use and pass them back to you.

      The book can be found by clicking on a new tab on the top menu called 'History'. It was originally published in 2000 to commemorate the hundredth anniversary of the consecration of St Francis’s church in Chester and the 125th anniversary of its opening.

      A guided tour of the church was published on our website last year and the full book has now been digitally published over the last twelve months setting out the Catholic and Franciscan history which gave rise to the church, friary and parish.

      The book has been brought completely up-to-date with new pictures and topics in this digital edition. Be sure to have a look at our 'History' page and discover the origins of our beautiful Church.


      Virtual Church Tour

      Our virtual Church tour is now live and accessible via the 'TOUR' tab on the far right of the menu bar or by clicking 'Tour' on the Latest News item. Please have a look and let the other people know how interesting and informative it is. We found it fascinating and learnt so much about St Francis Church and it's history. Alan, Peter and Bernard have done a great job with the tour. We are sure that people all over the world would enjoy a virtual tour of our beautiful Church.


      Prayers Web Page

      We have set up a very special web page on our internet site which records all the anniversaries of family and friends who have died in the Parish. Throughout 2016 we will be updating this page adding dates of death and special epitaphs.

      The page says the following; 'Prayers are requested for those whose anniversaries occur this month. May they Rest In Peace.' Due to the size of the list and the work involved in updating the list, names will be added to the web page each month during 2015 as the year progresses. It is also possible to include the date of death and a short personalised epitaph for your loved ones which will be displayed next to their name. To add relatives, dates or a personalised epitaph to the anniversary list please email to information to; stfrancis.chester@gmail.com We will try to update your information as soon as possible but please allow up to 28 days for the website to be updated.

      See  Prayers Web Page


      The Order Of Mass: Printable Leaflets

      We have included an on-line link to the printable 'Order Of Mass' leaflets from the Liturgy Office website which we will leave on our website as a 'Useful Link'.

      Here is a direct link to the web page The Order of Mass Printable Leaflets