As the desperate situation in Yemen worsens, the international development faith agencies, including CAFOD & Islamic Relief, are inviting supporters to pray for the victims of our gravest humanitarian crisis. After nearly four years of war, more than fourteen million people are facing starvation, & eighty five thousand children may have already died from extreme hunger since 2015. The UK government announced last week that it will uplift funding to the UN Peace process in Yemen by £2.5m. Tragically there is a conflict of interest here as the UK government are a coalition partner with Saudi Arabia in the conflict which is the direct cause of the humanitarian atrocity. Our arms sales to Saudi Arabia undoubtedly preserve jobs & support the local economy where BAE Systems manufacture aircraft & armaments. As a Parish, we have consistently prayed for the victims in Yemen, with 25 mentions in our weekend prayers since June last year. Be sure our prayers are heard & are making a difference. You may wish to offer the following prayer on a daily basis:
Giver of Life, Who hears the cries from Yemen: of mothers choosing between medicine or food, of parents grieving children lost to starvation, of those who have given up everything in hunger, hear our cries for hope, for change, & for peace.
In your mercy, break political deadlocks, soften hardened hearts, change closed minds, open unhearing ears. Let people come before power Let life be holy again Let your justice & peace Shape the nation of Yemen And the lives of all people. Amen.
We are about to begin preparing our Class 3 young disciples in the Parish & St Benedict’s Primary School for their First Holy Communion on the Feast of Corpus Christi 23rd June 2019 at our 10am Mass. We have an initial meeting for parents of the 9 children in the Parish Hall this Monday 4th Feb at 7.30pm. Any other parents with a child of similar age being educated elsewhere who would like to join the preparations will be most welcome at the meeting. Please keep the children, parents & teachers in your prayers as they begin this next stage in their journey of faith.
Some developing thoughts for Lent 2019.A weekly Lenten Pause, a half hour for silent prayer & recollection in alternate Churches, with varying dates to try to include those with regular weekly commitments. Fri 8th March OL&SB: Tues 12th March St Hilda’s: Fri 22nd March OL&SB: Tues 26th March St Hilda’s: Mon 1st April OL&SB: Tues 9th April St Hilda’s. All at 5.15pm until 5.45pm. Sun 14th April (Palm Sunday) Stations of the Cross & Palm Procession at Byland Abbey (provisional) Caroline Dollard has generously agreed to lead a Lent Course based on her new book “Seeking God Together”. It will help us to look at how we accompany families of all shapes, sizes & make up, at every stage of their existence as part of our belonging together & our community responsibility. An introductory session & 5 “seasons” to explore. Each session will include refreshments, reflection & prayer. Wednesdays 13th, 20th, & 27th March: 3rd, 10th, &17th April 2019, 7.30pm to 9pm. If you would like to participate, a list for names will be at the back of Church next weekend, & the Parish will provide each individual with a copy of the book. with love & my prayers. Fr Bede