At the start of a New Year, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all those who support our Clergy in their ministry and in helping with the life of our local Catholic community. A special word of thanks must be extended to all our Parish Staff: Maria Owen, Doug Savage & Clare Ryan. I would also like to formally thank Michele Edwards, who worked as the Fareham & Portchester Administrator for many years & who left for pastures new shortly before Christmas. I am pleased to offer a very warm welcome to Daniel Russell, who has taken this position, offering support to Fr Joe. Please join me in making him feel very welcome. A.M.D.G. Fr John Cooke

PLEASE TAKE TIME TO READ THE IMPORTANT LETTER BELOW ..... you can open it by clicking on this link

SUNDAY THOUGHT: 25th January 2015
THIRD Sunday of Ordinary Time (Year B)

We learn quickly in our lives that things do not always work out as we expect….
In last Sunday’s liturgy Eli taught Samuel how to hear the voice of the Lord. Today the word of God invites us to be open to hear God’s call. How do we respond when it comes?
In the first Reading we see that Jonah was living an unremarkable and presumably happy life until the word of the Lord came to him, asking him to go and preach repentance to the people of Nineveh. It was not a calling that Jonah wanted…. it wasn't just that he didn't want the disruption to his life that the call to be a prophet would undoubtedly cause. So Jonah's first reaction was to resist the Lord's call and to run away. It was only after a series of adventures, culminating in the episode with the fish, that the reluctant prophet accepted his calling and took God's message to Nineveh.
Simon had known what he wanted to do with his life: he wanted to be a fisherman. He had grown up knowing the life, living in a lake-side community. He had learned well, and was good at his job. Although he was married and ‘settled down’, providing for his family, the Lord had other plans for Simon, and his brother. They met Jesus, this new, different preacher, who seemed to speak with an authority they had never heard before. When he called them to be his disciples everything changed.
These two people responded in different ways: Jonah resisted the call but Peter, and some of the other apostles, ‘left their nets and followed’ Jesus. Even though they did not know how it would end, they trusted God’s plan.
St Paul’s advice (in the second reading) is simple, we need to set our eyes on God and be open to the word of God whenever and however it comes, so that we can respond properly to God’s call in our lives. Starting with ‘repent’, which means ‘change one’s mind’, if we focus on what is important we will make sure our lives grow in a good direction…. God’s direction.
Fr Joe Gruskiewicz
Pope Francis@Pontifex: How often we forget to dedicate ourselves to that which truly matters! We forget that we are children of God.
Bishop Philip Egan@ BishopEgan: In the next few weeks, pastoral areas will be holding Holy Hours for the new evangelisation. See more here: https://vimeo.com/114040348
PARISH OF OUR LADY STAR OF THE SEA, FAREHAM & GOSPORT HOLY HOUR, to pray for the new Evangelising Strategy Teams initiative, will be at 3pm on Sunday 15th February in Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, Bells Lane, Stubbington.

Bishop Philip writes: “As you know, the Church in our time is calling us to the work of new evangelisation. We are Christ’s missionary disciples, and He has given us many charisms and talents for this work. Now we want to set up in every Pastoral Area an Evangelisation Strategy Team, comprised of clergy and laity, to direct the work of mission at the local, parish level. In your Pastoral Area, there will soon be a Holy Hour to pray for this initiative. The Strategy Team is a new body to replace the Pastoral Council. It should represent all ages and types. It’s all about vision! Its purpose is to sponsor mission-projects across the area. Teams will meet once a term. To find out more, go to our diocesan website: www.portsmouthdiocese.org.uk/evangelisation-teams. There you will find a video with more information and details of what the commitment would be for team members.”
Bishop Philip

Message from Bishop Philip: Last weekend, you will have heard my Pastoral Letter on Mary's husband, St Joseph. In it, I spoke of the crisis of fatherhood we are experiencing: Today, fatherhood, along with marriage, is in crisis. To the great distress of everyone involved, 42% of marriages in the UK end in divorce and nearly 50% of children are born outside marriage………
Please ask if you would like a copy of the letter or visit the Portsmouth Diocese website.

Holocaust Memorial Day: 27 January - a time to pause and remember the millions of people who have been murdered or whose lives have been changed beyond recognition during the Holocaust, Nazi Persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur. On that day we can honour the survivors and challenge ourselves to use the lessons of their experience to inform our lives today. This year is the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the largest Nazi death camp. 2015 is also the 20th anniversary of the Genocide in Srebrenica, Bosnia. So it is appropriate that the theme for this major anniversary year focuses ‘Keeping the Memory Alive’. Those who have no direct experience to recall are asked, on, to ‘remember’ those who were murdered and honour the survivors. ‘Keeping the Memory Alive’ encourages us to consider how we in the UK commemorate the past, as well as looking to the future of Holocaust memory.
FIRST FRIDAY Devotions: 6th February in Sacred Heart Church, Fareham. Rosary at 9 am followed by Mass at 9.30 am. Tea and Coffee are available in the Hall after Mass. In the Church there is
Adoration; Meditation; Devotions; Sacrament of Reconciliation & Spiritual Guidance. Contact: 01329 318869 or 02392 381802.

FIRST SATURDAY Devotions: 7th February in St Mary's, Gosport.
9.30 am Mass followed by Adoration with Rosary. There is also Ministry of Healing available. In need of healing, a listening ear know someone who is troubled, why not bring them along? Sacrament of Reconciliation at midday. Contact 02392 580119

CAFOD Portsmouth Supporters’ Meeting
CAFOD Portsmouth invite you to a meeting on Saturday 31st January from 10am until 1.30pm at St Bede’s RC Primary School (Popley Way, Basingstoke, RG24 9DX ). Booking essential. Please ring 01252 329385 or email: portsmouth@cafod.org.uk by 26 January 2015.

New Year’s Resolution portsmouth@cafod.org.uk
Could you help out CAFOD in 2015? We really need more people to help in a wide variety of ways. For information please go to cafodportsmouth.wordpress.com or contact Lynda in the CAFOD office: 01252 329385
St Jude’s School 50th Anniversary
St Jude’s School opened on 4th May 1965. Below are some of the events planned to mark the occasion. Parishioners (especially past pupils and staff) will be most welcome.
Occasions like this need to be marked in a tangible way so we are hoping to raise funds to provide a Stained Glass Window for the library, designed by the current children that will give them a memento of their own. If you have good memories of St Jude’s and would like to help - we have set up an account:-
St. Jude’s Catholic Primary School Governor’s Fund Sort: 40-52-40
A/C no:00083345 Ref: St Jude’s 50th
Alternatively cheque/cash can be sent to school All donations will be appreciated.
Many thanks, St Jude’s Governors 50th Committee

Our Facebook page: ‘St Jude’s Catholic Primary School 50th Anniversary’ gives more information about planned events
School Open Day Tuesday 5th May 2015 1.30pm- 6pm
St John’s Cathedral Mass Friday 22nd May 2015 11am
Hog Roast & Dinner Dance*: Marquee at St Jude’s 7.30pm 22nd May 2015 (18+)

*Tickets on sale now - available from: St Jude’s School; Sacred Heart Office; St Anthony’s School; St Margaret Mary Office and Immaculate Conception Office.
The charities involved in this scheme save and change lives every single day. Whether helping people who are homeless, seafarers, prisoners, children with disabilities and low income families here in the UK or providing practical survival solutions and sharing God’s love with communities around the world. Find out more via 020 7095 5367 or yourcatholiclegacy.org.uk
 Fr John Cooke is planning to lead a 12-Day Pilgrimage to the Holy Land [Travelling Sun 14th- Thurs 25th Feb 2016]
Information regarding this awesome experience can be obtained from: St Margaret Mary’s Church, Middle Rd. Park Gate, SO31 7GH (01489 572797 or email: office@stmm.org.uk)
Did you know you could receive this Newsletter by email? Ask your local Parish Office to set this up… or use the contact form on the Parish website
(see address below).
Sign up for Portsmouth Diocese E-News
Keep up to date with what’s happening in the diocese. The diocesan e-news comes out once a week: latest events, photos, videos. www.portsmouthdiocese.org.uk
Framework for Collaboration - Formation for Mission Team
This Diocesan Team, led by Fr. David O Sullivan, is responsible for advising, training and developing catechetical resources in the Diocese.
Why is this important? We are all concerned with the transmission of our faith to the next generation, as parents, grandparents and as church members. Good catechesis does really help this process.
We have parish catechists. There are many wonderful and committed parish catechists all over the Diocese. However, they are not usually experts in catechesis and rely on published programs. In addition, there are rarely resources within the parish for monitoring of and training in the delivery of programs. The Formation for Mission Team will be able to fill this gap.
The Formation for Mission Team needs the input of parish catechists. We need 5 parish volunteers to form each of the following central teams: children’s liturgy, baptism preparation, first communion preparation, confirmation preparation, RCIA, Courses & events (30 volunteers in total). We need people who can use their experience at parish level to help and encourage others to develop excellent catechetical programs at all levels.
Time Commitment? About 6 Saturday meetings a year, with a few hours individual work in between. Some may choose to offer more time.
Welcome to the Catholic Parish
of Our Lady Star of the Sea,
Fareham & Gosport.

Extending from the River Hamble in the west to Portsmouth Harbour in the east, and including the former Parishes of Fareham & Portchester, Gosport & Bridgemary, Lee-on-the-Solent & Stubbington, and Park Gate, the Parish is part of the Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth.

The Parish has 9 Church Communities: St Mary's, Gosport; St Columba's, Bridgemary; St John the Evangelist, Lee-on-the-Solent; Immaculate Conception, Stubbington; Sacred Heart, Fareham; St Philip Howard, Fareham; St Mary's Anglican Church, Portchester; St Margaret Mary, Park Gate; and the Chapel of St Thomas More, Park Place, Wickham.
The aims of the new Parish are to work collectively, sharing talents for the good of the individual church communities and to develop the Church’s mission in the Solent area and reaching out in particular to those who are disaffected. It is still early days, but there are positive signs that the original four communities are learning how to work together more effectively. Good communication, as well as a positive attitude will be crucial to the success of this evolving process.

A message from the Chair of the PPC

The Parish of Our Lady Star of the Sea, Fareham and Gosport (which was named to reflect the area’s close association with the sea) covers the Boroughs of Fareham and Gosport. It officially came into being on 1st November 2010. Father John Humphreys was inducted as Parish Priest by the Episcopal Vicar on 7th December 2010 at the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Stubbington.

Following the formation of the Parish, a new structure was needed to oversee and develop a working relationship between the four 'Areas' and their Chuch-going communities. A new Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) was formed by inviting lay representatives from across the Parish to work with the members of the clergy. The role of the PPC is to advise the Parish Priest and is primarily concerned with matters spiritual, communal and social so as to help the Parish grow together as a community.
A new Parish Finance Council advises on the management, property and administration of the Parish.

At a local level there are four Pastoral Teams working with their Associate Parish Priests and dealing with day-to-day matters within each church-going community.
Michael Ricketts,
Chair of the PPC

Minutes from the latest PPC Meeting available below:

Weekly Mass Times

Details of regular Mass times and the availability of various Sacraments (as well as other useful information) is published in the Parish Contact Booklet. The latest copy can be downloaded here.
Contact Booklet
click to download