Special 3rd December Mass
As we begin the New Liturgical year and the Year of Mission following Bishop Declan’s vision for the future we would like to bring the Parish together for one Parish Mass at 10.30am on the First Sunday of Advent – 3rd December. Please note there will be no 5.45pm, 10am or 6.30pm Mass that weekend. Please fill in the slip provided at the weekend masses and deliver to the parish office if you to attend.
13th November update: 14 parishoners have so far confirmed attendance at the shared lunch after this special 3rd December mass.
Accessing the Parish archives
Our parish archive: waiting to be used
A parish’s sense of its own history is at the heart of what it is and how it comes across to the wider world. Where to look for that history can be a challenging question, but part of the answer is normally in the collection of documents, images and objects known as the parish archive.
For the first 70 years of its existence, St John’s was a Benedictine mission church under the charge of monks from Downside. Since 1932 it has formed part of the Diocese of Clifton which like Downside has a thriving, professionally managed archive. The archive being assembled at St John’s will fill a gap left by these and other sources of the parish’s history.
At present the archive consists chiefly of:
- Registers of baptisms, confirmations, marriages and burials. Please note that this excludes burials at Perrymead, which are recorded separately. Burial records are available online at the Bath Burial Index which inlcudes a survey of Perrymead Cemetery memorial photos and transcriptions. This information is freely accessible at the Bath Record Office website https://www.batharchives.co.uk.
- Six archive boxes of catalogued documents and photos relating especially to St John’s anniversaries, bomb damage and mortalities in the Bath Blitz, the opening of Cardinal Newman School and parish affairs as diverse as the authenticity of relics to the theft of the weathercock.
- Mass notices for almost every week of the first hundred years of St John’s.
- Records of the Bath Conference of the St Vincent de Paul Society 1892-1964.
There are some intriguing one-offs like a list of subscribers for pews in the Catholic chapel that was built following the anti-Catholic riots of 1780 and mission accounts for the period of the Napoleonic Wars.
The hope is to make the archive useful to a wide range of people. The first step is to spell out what the archive contains. So, with the backing of Canon David, the St John’s website is now publishing an up to date, itemised, listing of its contents.
Download in PDF format here.
The archive itself has not been digitised so for a potential user the next step would be to contact the parish archivist (details below) and arrange a visit to the presbytery to consult items of particular interest. There are few rules about how that is done and no charge is envisaged for first-looks or small study projects.
phone: 01225 466799
St John’s Catholic Primary School new Head Teacher
Giles Mercer, Chair of Governors of St John’s Catholic Primary School, writes as follows:
We are delighted to welcome our new Headteacher, Mrs Bennett, to St John’s Catholic Primary School. Mrs Bennett’s previous appointment was as Headteacher of St Joseph and St Teresa’s Catholic Primary School, Wells, where she successfully raised standards across the school, achieving an Outstanding RE inspection in January 2017 and a Good Ofsted outcome in November 2016. From September until December 2016 she was Executive Headteacher also of Corpus Christi Catholic Primary School in Weston-super-Mare. Mrs Bennett is a member of the parish of St Benedict’s, Stratton-on-the-Fosse.
The governors are confident that Mrs Bennett will lead St John’s with vision, great commitment, experience, and ability in its next phase for the benefit of all the children of St John’s Catholic Primary School. Mrs Bennett is enjoying getting to know the pupils, parents and staff of the school and she is looking forward to meeting all of the wider community over the coming months.
River Avon garden
St Johns Parishioners have worked together over the past six months to transform our River Avon Garden space.
Our community project aims to clean up our River Avon Garden and present it as a place of peace for the visitors to our City, our neighbours and the natural inhabitants. The work has consisted thus far of removing 10 tons of soil and debris and 30 bags of rubbish and refuse. We are now making progress to beautify the space and installing a wall and grotto to Our Lady. Many prayers are required as we restore our Garden space.
Thank you to all those involved. We dedicate the work of our hands to Our Lady Queen of Peace.
You can see pictures of the progress here.
A Future Full of Hope
Bishop Declan has published his document 'A Future Full of Hope' which is available to download here.
Cornerstone Mission update March 18th
Cornerstone @ St Johns would like to thank the Adoration Team, St Johns Runners, Young Adult Group, Fabric & Finance Committee and all parishioners for their donations, please pray for the Cornerstone Mission and its success as it seeks to help those in need.
The March update is available for download here.
St Johns Young Adult Group
Our Young Adult Group (18+) has been growing in faith at St Johns since 2015. We started with helping with the clean up of our Adoration Chapel, writing cards for the sick and praying for our community as established adorers on Fridays at 8pm – 9pm with shared rosary and intentions.
Most recently, we have been leading the Bible Study Series each Wednesday at 7.30pm, as well as enjoying local Ceilidhs (Irish Dances) in Bristol and Bath. We also go to the local Rollerskating rink, play Badminton or go for Walks together.
This spring/summer 2017 we’re looking to help clean up the Church Grounds and Gardens, as well as continue our Social activities around Bath. You can meet us after the 6.30pm Mass at the back of the Church after which we go to a local pub for refreshments.
Perpetual Adoration has begun in Bath. The Devotion was begun by the Missionaries of the Most Holy Eucharist in France and it is hoped that every Diocese in the world will have a Perpetual Adoration Chapel. St John Paul II opened the first Chapel of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration at St Peter’s Basilica on 2nd December 1981 where he expressed the words “I hope this form of Perpetual Adoration with permanent exposition of the Blessed Sacrament will continue and grow in all the parishes and Christian communities throughout the world”. At St. John’s, Perpetual Adoration starts Sunday at midnight through to Saturday midnight closing with Benediction. At present we have over 150 parish volunteers who have promised one hour per week to spend in silent adoration.
2017 Festival Choir programme
Download for our 2017 Festival Choir programme.
First Holy Communion Dates 2017
29th January 2017 – Introductory Lesson Meet and Greet for Parents and Children
5th February 2017
26th February 2017
12th March 2017
26th March 2017
2nd April 2017
7th May 2017
14th May 2017
21st May 2017
11th June 2017
18th June 2017 – First Holy Communion Day (Feast of Corpus Christi)
Lessons will be taking place in the parish hall on Sunday morning at 9am prior to the collection of the children for Mass at 10am.
Registration forms are available at the back of the church or available for download here.
If you have any questions, please contact Karen Chana by email or by calling 07443 948189.
Adoration Night chapel inaguration
The new Night-time Adoration Chapel based in the lower rooms of the sacristy of St John's Church was opened on Tuesday, 8th December. The Mass of the Immaculate Conception to inaugurate Pope Francis' request for the Year of Mercy was held in the church after which our Night Chapel was solemnly dedicated.
Catholic online dating
Catholic Online Dating is a free to use, modern Catholic Dating website for the UK and Ireland. After launching the site in mid 2015, it has been blessed with a great run of success over the last few months, reaching just under 600 active UK users and recently been featured in the Catholic Herald (the magazine w/s Feb 12th 2016) and the Independent Catholic News (Feb 13th 2016).
For more details visit www.catholiconlinedating.co.uk.
In the Entrance to St John's is a new Weekly Events Board to assist our Parish Communication and give Parishioners easy access to the events taking place during the next week. This Photo shows Canon David with Paddy Phelan, a parishioner who has volunteered each week to keep the Events Board up to date.
Canon Tony's 60th Jubilee
Celebrating 60 years of Priesthood
On Saturday 28th November 2015 a large crowd gathered at the Church of St John the Evangelist, South Parade, Bath to celebrate the Diamond Anniversary of The Reverend Canon Dr Anthony Harding. The main Celebrant was Bishop Declan Lang, Bishop of Clifton, who gave the Homily at the Mass. During his homily Bishop Declan thanked Canon Harding for his sixty years of faithful service to the Diocese having spent his early years in Curacy at Bath, Swindon, Salisbury and Bristol before being appointed Parish Priest at St George's Warminster, and St Bernadette's, Whitchurch, Bristol. For the past thirty years Canon Harding has been the Diocesan Archivist, keeping the historical records of events and details of the growth of the local Catholic Communities throughout the extensive Diocese of Clifton. Canon Harding has written a number of books, including the Diocese of Clifton, 1850-2000, and Clifford of Clifton, England's youngest Catholic Bishop.
The day at St John's was a most happy occasion with clergy friends and former parishioners travelling from different locations. The Solemn Mass was celebrated with beautiful liturgical music sung by the Choirs of St John's under the Musical Directorship of Rupert Bevan. At the end of the Mass various tributes and gifts were given in appreciation for Canon Harding's sixty years of service since his Ordination in the Basilica of the Twelve Apostles, Rome in 27th November 1955. Mr Gervase O'Donovan presented Canon Harding with a cheque on behalf of St John's and James Serenhedd presented him with the October edition of the Downside Review, a special number of the Downside review. Dom Aidan Bellenger was unable to attend but writes, " I salute his achievements as a fellow author-priest, as a dear friend and admirer over many years".
The liturgy was followed by a special lunch in the Parish Hall organised by a loyal team, who have supported Canon Harding, especially in his years of retirement at St John's flats. However, as many give testimony his retirement has been a very active one, including regularly duties serving the local Convent and Parishes of Bath Deanery, especially, The Good Shepherd, Batheaston where each Sunday he officiates at the 9.00am Mass. At the Reception Canon Harding cut his special Anniversay cake and thanked Bishop Declan, the clergy and everyone who celebrated his Jubilee Mass with him. He wished too to remember with gratitude his late parents and sister who, in a variety of ways made sacrifices in support of his vocation. With a glint in his eye he urged us to buy his latest book, "Clifton Chapters" which he had made available in the Hall; £10.
All who attended felt honoured to have been present on this historical day in Canon Harding's life and the life of the Diocese of Clifton for whom he has served so well.