Welcome to the website of St Michael’s Catholic Parish in Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire in the UK. My name is Fr Philip Shryane, I am the parish priest and I have been here since November 2017. You can read information on our website about our parish, I hope it helps you and that you will contact us if you wish or come to visit us if you are in Huntingdon.
St Michael’s Parish is part of the Roman Catholic Diocese of East Anglia, we are midway between Cambridge and Peterborough. We are a friendly parish with a mixture of different nationalities coming together at weekends to celebrate Mass and to pray together. On our website you can find Mass times, the weekly newsletter and read contributions from some of the communities who make up our parish. You can also find out how to access the Sacraments and what preparation is required by the Church for each Sacrament.
May God bless you and your family,
NEW RESTRICTIONS MEANS LIVE STREAM ONLY:
With the new restrictions of lockdown Live streaming of Mass is now the only way to join us for Mass. To join the live stream click here
If you are joining Mass via live stream you may wish to use these two prayers, the first at the time of Holy Communion, to make a spiritual communion and the second at the end of Mass.
AN ACT OF SPIRITUAL COMMUNION
My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot, at this moment, receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
The second prayer we say together at the end of Mass, asking God’s help in this whole pandemic situation.
A PRAYER TO BE SAID AT THE END OF EACH MASS AND TO BE GIVEN TO ALL WHO ARE SELF ISOLATING
God our Father, Creator of the world, almighty and merciful,
out of love for us You sent your Son into the world as the doctor of our souls and our bodies.
Look upon your children who, in this difficult time of confusion and dismay in many regions of the world,
turn to you seeking strength, salvation and relief.
Deliver us from illness and fear, heal our sick, comfort their families, give wisdom to our rulers,
energy and reward to our doctors, nurses and volunteers, eternal life to the dead.
Do not abandon us in the moment of trial but deliver us from all evil.
We ask this of You, who with the Son and the Holy Spirit, live and reign for ever and ever. Amen.
Mary, mother of health and hope, pray for us!
St Michael, pray for us
Sunday 8th November
Good morning, at the moment I cannot get any internet connection from the mobile internet hub, not sure why, so I may not be able to live stream this morning, I will keep trying, but it is nearly time. Sorry about that, I guess it is the weather conditions.
Friday 6th November
As we have returned to lockdown for the next few weeks the Church is closed and all Masses listed on the newsletter will be live streamed for you to join me or to watch later, according to your own schedule. The Sunday Mass will be at 10.00 weekday Masses will be live streamed everyday at 09.30. The midweek meditation will also continue each week, please check the newsletter for more details.
A reminder to those who wish to add family names to our remembrance list during November, please email your list of names to me and I will add them to the list in the basket in front of the altar for remembrance during Mass each day.
For those who wish to join the First Communion programme for next year, please email to me so I can send the invitation to the parents meeting on zoom which is on Thursday 12th November at 19.30, the meeting will last about an hour and a half and will try to give details of the programme to you.
You will be pleased to hear that plans for our Church development have now been submitted to the Planning Dept. A public notice will shortly appear in the local paper and you will be able to view the plans on the Planning Office website. I have put a copy of the plans on the boards in the GS Room for you to see when we return to Mass next month, I will also put a copy of them on this website in the next couple of days for you to see. This is really good news and we hope the planners will look favourably on our application.
Take care and stay safe and well during this lockdown. If you need or want to contact me please ring (always leave a message) or email your requests and I will get in touch as soon as I can.
Mass for the Sick and their Families,
NHS Front-Line workers and those working in Social Care
The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales recognise that this time of the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting every person in our countries. Those who are sick, and their families, are suffering many hardships of isolation from contact with those they love. Our front-line workers in hospitals and in care homes all over our lands are giving exceptional service to those who are vulnerable at this time. In order to show a spiritual solidarity with all those who are involved in the ways described above, each week from next Thursday, a Catholic Bishop will celebrate Mass in their Cathedral which will be live-streamed for people to join. This will take place every Thursday at 7.00pm
The first is tomorrow 23rd April: Cardinal Vincent Nichols Westminster Cathedral, to join this Mass go to http://www.westminstercathedral.org.uk/
Midweek Meditation; I have been asked, originally by NHS staff, for some words of comfort for them as they have stressful shifts and feel cut off from the Church, from family and friends, I planned to record a short video for them and send it by email. But God had a different plan: it was too large to send by email, so I have decided to record it on our YouTube channel for all of you to find. It will usually be a short meditation on the first and second reading of the following Sunday, to help you feel connected to the Sunday Mass, even though you cannot be here in person. I hope these will be a help to all of you during this difficult time. I will record the first one today at 11.00 and it will be on the channel some time after that for you to watch as and when you wish.
Confession can still be offered on request as long as hygiene and social distancing requirements can be observed. Simply ring or email Fr Philip to make a request and book a time.
First Confession and First Holy Communion
These celebrations will be postponed until such time allows for family and friends to gather safely in our Churches; our programme sessions will also be cancelled at this time. It would be very good for parents and children to continue to use the I Belong book during this time and work through it together; this will help the children to be ready to share the sacraments when it is possible to do so.
Anointing and Holy Communion for the Sick
Pastoral visits to the sick and housebound will continue as they wish and as long as they are not self-isolating. This also depends on Fr Philip staying free of the virus. We can also do much on the phone, supporting each other and asking for help if necessary. If you need visits during this time of separation and isolation, please phone to ask.
We are now allowed to have Funerals in the Church again, both a Funeral Mass and a Funeral Service. There are Government limits on the numbers attending, at present the limit is 30 people; this applies to the Church and also to any refreshments you might wish to have after the Funeral.
For now, these are the main items for our parish, I am sure there will be more changes as the days go by. Please remember to keep your times of prayer, feel free to come to the church at weekends or ring if you wish to come in during a weekday, I am more likely to be at home during this time. Although we cannot gather at the Church, the Lord will not abandon us He will be present in the Blessed Sacrament for you This is a time when we need to turn to the Lord asking his help and guidance, praying for his protection for ourselves and our loved ones. Remember in your prayers those who are sick and their families; pray also for those who work in the NHS and all caring for others; pray for yourselves and your own family. Keep safe and well, be sensible about what you can do; if you are vulnerable take care and accept the limitations; if you are not in the vulnerable group, please pray for those who are and help them if you can. Please keep an eye on our parish website for the newsletter each Sunday morning.
May the Lord bless us all during this time,
CATHOLIC BISHOPS’ CONFERENCE OF ENGLAND AND WALES
A letter from the President and Vice-President on behalf of all the Bishops of the Conference
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, so many aspects of our lives must change. This includes the ways in which we publicly express our faith. It is very clear that, following official advice and in order to keep each other safe, save lives and support the NHS, at this time we must not gather for public acts of worship in our churches. This will begin from Friday evening, 20th March 2020, until further notice.
Our churches will remain open. They are not closing. They will be a focal point of prayer, where you will find solace and strength. In visiting our churches at this time, we will observe with great care the practices of hygiene and the guidance on social distancing.
However, the celebration of Mass, Sunday by Sunday and day by day, will take place without a public congregation.
Knowing that the Mass is being celebrated; joining in spiritually in that celebration; watching the live-streaming of the Mass; following its prayers at home; making an act of spiritual communion: this is how we share in the Sacrifice of Christ in these days. These are the ways in which we will sanctify Sunday, and indeed every day.
We want everyone to understand that in these emergency circumstances, and for as long as they last, the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days is removed. This is, without doubt, the teaching of the Church (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2181). This pandemic is the ‘serious reason’ why this obligation does not apply at this time.
You will find more details about the pathway of prayer and sacramental life we are now to take in the accompanying document and on the Bishops’ Conference website (www.cbcew.org.uk). Your own bishop and parish priest will provide further support, encouragement and information about our way of prayer together in the coming weeks.
The second vital aspect of these challenging times is our care for each other. There are so many ways in which we are to do this: being attentive to the needs of our neighbour, especially the elderly and vulnerable; contributing to our local food banks; volunteering for charitable initiatives and organisations; simply keeping in touch by all the means open to us.
During these disturbing and threatening times, the rhythm of the prayer of the Church will continue. Please play your part in it. The effort of daily kindness and mutual support for all will continue and increase. Please play your part in this too. For your commitment to this, we thank you.
‘The Lord is my shepherd,
There is nothing I shall want.’
May God bless us all.
Vincent Cardinal Nichols Archbishop Malcolm McMahon OP
Bishop Alan Hopes and Fr. Philip Shryane together with our young people
who had the Sacrament of Confirmation
4th July 2019