Christians Against Poverty (CAP)

CAP is a 20 year old voluntary organisation to support those who seem to be in impossible financial difficulties. Its work is not to pay off whatever is the debt but, in both a professional and befriending way, to support the client to manage the situation.

There are two sides to its work. On the one hand professional advice is obtained with CAP negotiating with the banks, etc on behalf of the client. This financially professional body is based in Bradford. Individuals seeking the assistance of CAP give it authority to negotiate with creditors and organise the client's finances so as to make them debt free within 5 years or negotiate a managed insolvency.

On the other hand in the local regions, for instance in Penrith, there will be people who act as befrienders, that is who "walk with the client" to encourage and support him or her to carry out the plan of action which has been professionally negotiated by Bradford. Then there are others, those "bringing blessings" who give general & practical support to the client and the befriender, for instance preparing a Christmas hamper, or sending birthday greetings.

The emphasis is to reassure the clients they are not alone, and to encourage them to follow the financial plan negotiated by CAP to manage their finances.

CAP is a Christian initiative. Although CAP in Penrith is only a year old nevertheless there have been two successes with two clients completing the process of clearing their debts.

Would you like to know more? Do have a word with John Poland or me. I do think this is one of the surest ways of working together ecumenically with other Christian bodies which our Church encourages us to do. Fr Jerome.

Services this year for Lent, Holy Week and Easter Day

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Stations of the Cross immediately after every Friday Mass during Lent.

Lenten Course 'Pivotal Players': every Wednesday 3.30pm in Quiet Room. Those participating please take home a study book.

Parish celebration of Passover Meal: Wednesday 5th April in the evening.

Palm Sunday April 8/9th: Saturday 6.00pm at Alston; 8.30am & 10.25am at Penrith. The Sung Mass with Procession of Palms begins in the Haydock Centre 10.25am

Tuesday: Penrith: 6pm Servers/Ministers practice for Maundy Thurs & Good Fri

Spy Wednesday 6.00 to 8.00pm: Sacrament of Reconciliation/Confessions.

Holy Thursday: 11.30am. Mass of Chrism at Lancaster Cathedral. Penrith 7pm. Mass of Last Supper with Watching till 11pm.

Good Friday: 10.00am. Stations of the Cross. 12 noon Penrith Ecumenical Walk of Witness starts at Penrith Museum; 12 noon Alston Walk of Witness starts at the Friends. 3.00pm. Penrith & Alston, Our Celebration of the Lord's Passion.

Holy Saturday Penrith: 11.30am. Polish tradition of Blessing of Easter Gifts. Penrith 3pm Servers/Ministers Practice for the Vigil Service Penrith 8.30pm Easter Vigil Mass of the Resurrection

Easter Sunday: Penrith: Masses 8.30am & 10.30am, 3.30pm (Polish)  Alston: 4.30pm.

Welcoming refugees

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As noted last week, four of us attended the key introductory meeting in February at Carlisle University with a further seven who have declared their interest in being involved. I have left a pack of useful information in the sacristy message box for each of these and there are extra packs of information for others who might be interested.

Remember the meeting to carry this work forward is on Friday 31st March in the Haydock Centre at 6pm. This is an informal meeting to explore ideas. However, to help us focus there will be an introduction by Sarah Wilson who has spent considerable time running a Learning Centre in the refugee camp in Dunkirk. We will also share the most up to date information from Cumbria County Council who have the responsibility for the basic housing, etc. of our guests. There is much else, though, to make a real welcome. Sarah Wilson & Fr Jerome

Passover Meal

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As part of our parish Lenten Preparations, there will again be a Passover Meal on Wednesday 5th April.

Tickets for the Passover Meal are now all spoken for and we are collecting names for a reserve list. If you gave your name for tickets but haven’t paid for them yet, please will you do it today to avoid having spaces at the Passover table (or tell us they aren't needed). Next week, tickets not paid for will be sold. Fiona Roebuck

Spring Plant Sale - Sunday, 2nd April after 8.30 Mass

Get Growing Now

Our parish Spring plant sale is in support of the wonderful work of the Sisters of the Holy Spirit working among the Poor in Southern Zambia, especially the Monze hospital. It will be held on Sunday 2nd April after the 8.30 Mass.

Would contributors please bring veg., flower and fruit plants for sale to the Haydock Centre between 1 and 3. 30 pm on Saturday 1 April.

We would also be grateful for donations of prizes for the raffle which will take place during the plant sale. Items can be brought to the Masses on Sunday 26th March. There will be someone in the narthex to take these after each Mass. Many thanks.

Thanks and good gardening! The Monze Team

My visit in May this year to Zambia and Monze Mission Hospital

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We have recently reformed our support group in the parish for the Congregation of the Holy Spirit Sisters and their management of the Mission Hospital in the township of Monze, southern Zambia. This group generously raised over £800 before Christmas for the Sisters and their work in the hospital. Take a copy from the narthex of their Report of how our last donation was spent. Sr Juunza, the hospital manager, has just sent us a document outlining the project for a new neonatal unit for the hospital.

The Sisters wish for more than our fundraising, though this is important. They wish for our prayers not just for the Mission Hospital but also for their life as a Congregation. We do this every first Thursday Mass in the month. Do join us!

I am travelling to Zambia this May to stay with the Sisters, see their work and spend a longer time at the Hospital as well as visiting the Bishop of Monze diocese. I will speak of our parish, its concern for them and come back with a report of their life and work, especially of the Hospital. I will also invite one or two of the sisters to Penrith.

Please support the fundraising efforts for the Sisters that are taking place during Lent. Thank you. Fr Jerome.