Christ Himself ordered His disciples to preach the Gospel to all nations and to baptise those who accept the message of the Gospel. In His encounter with Nicodemus (John 3:1-21), Christ made it clear that baptism was necessary for salvation: “Amen, amen I say to thee, unless a man be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.” For Catholics, the sacrament is not a mere formality; it is the very mark of a Christian, because it brings us into new life in Christ, and we become members of His Church.
When a child is Baptised it is welcomed into the Catholic Faith with open arms. It is a commitment from the Parents and Godparents to bring that child up in the Catholic faith: to nurture and embrace the teachings of Jesus in the child’s mind, body and soul.
Baptism courses are run on the second Saturday of every month in the church hall at 9am.
Please contact the parish office for any further information.
The Holy Eucharist is one of the seven sacraments, in this and in no other sacrament, we receive the very body and blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ. Innumerable, precious graces come to us through the reception of Holy Communion.
In John’s gospel, Jesus summarized the reasons for receiving Holy Communion when he said:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is real food, and my blood is real drink. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him. As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me. This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever” (John 6:53–58).
The First Holy Communion programme is open to children in year 3 and above.
An application form will be made available at the back of the church around July: this will need to be filled in and returned to the parish office before the parents’ meeting. There will be ample notification in the newsletter of the submission deadline and first session.
Our Holy Communion programme starts in September with a meeting of all the parents whose children would like to make their First Holy Communion the following May.
Those wishing their children to make their First Holy Communion at St Alban’s are expected to make a commitment to bring them to Mass every weekend.
The parents and children will be taken through a programme of approximately 15 sessions, which will prepare them for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion. The sessions are usually on a Thursday evening starting at 7pm. A programme of topics and dates will be provided at the beginning of the course.
After your child’s Holy Communion day they will be invited back to a Going Forth Mass and our May procession where they have another chance to wear their beautiful outfits.
Please contact the parish office for any further information, or Mrs Tracey Knight on 07528 778876
The Sacrament of Confirmation confers special graces of the Holy Spirit upon the person being confirmed, just as such graces were granted to the Apostles on Pentecost. Like Baptism, therefore, it can only be performed once, and Confirmation increases and deepens all of the graces granted at Baptism. It strengthens those who receive it to spread and defend the Catholic faith by word and deed.
The effects of Confirmation are as follows:
– An increased portion of the gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, knowledge, right judgment, understanding, courage, piety, and fear of the Lord.
– A deepening and strengthening of the grace received at Baptism, which is considered the presence of God in the soul.
– A more intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.
– A closer bond with the Catholic Church.
– The ability to take a greater, more mature role in the Church’s mission of living the Christian faith daily and witnessing to Christ everywhere.
– A special mark, or character, on the soul that can never be erased.
– Each person’s ability to embrace these effects depends on his or her openness to the sacrament and willingness to accept it as God’s personal gift.
The confirmation programme is available to candidates in year 10 and above.
An application form will be made available at the back of the church around August; this will need to be filled in and returned to the parish office by a deadline in September. Candidates must book a time to meet with Fr Maurice and a Catechist using a list at the back of the Church which will be available near to the start of September. Parents or guardians are expected to come to this meeting. There will be ample notification in the newsletter of the submission deadline and first session.
Starting in October the candidates will be taken through a programme of approximately 15 sessions, which will prepare them for the Sacrament of Confirmation. The sessions are usually on a Saturday between 4pm-6pm followed by the Vigil Mass (6.30pm). A programme of topics and dates will be provided at the beginning of the course.
The Candidates will engage with a variety of topics and presenters through the course, as well as having a chance to participate in the carol service as a group and to go on a pilgrimage or retreat. They will also be invited to attend the May Procession.
Please contact the parish office for any further information.
Marriage, as designed by God, is a faithful, exclusive, lifelong union of a man and a woman joined in an intimate community of life and love. They commit themselves completely to each other and to the wondrous responsibility of bringing children into the world and caring for them. Man and woman are equal; they are also different. This complementarity draws them together in a mutually loving union that should always be open to the procreation of children. (Catechism of the Catholic Church #1602-1605)
If you are thinking of entering into the Sacrament of Marriage then please contact Fr. Maurice for further details at least 6 months before you hope to get married.
The R.C.I.A. is a journey of discovery for those thinking about joining the Catholic Church. The programme begins in September each year and continues until May the following year. We meet every Monday evening from 7.30pm until 8.30pm in the presbytery, with breaks during school holidays.
We cover all aspects of the Catholic faith, including the Mass, the Sacraments, Scripture, Prayer and Catholic practices.
Any parishioner who would like to know more about their Faith, or who would like to support the group is also very welcome to attend.
If you wish to participate then please contact Fr. Maurice for further details.