May Devotions to Our Lady

On Saturday, 19th May 2018, guest speaker Brenden Thompson, who is pioneering a new initiative in the Church ‘Signs of Life’, gave a talk at both St Philip & St James’ Church and Holy Cross Church, Bedford as part of the May Devotions to Our Lady of Guadalupe.

The day began with Morning Prayer and a Votive Mass of Our Lady of Guadalupe at St Philip & St James’ Church. This was followed by a spiritual talk by Brenden who went on to lead the Divine Mercy Chaplet and the Holy Rosary.

The morning was well attended and it was lovely to see old friends from St Thomas Aquinas Church in Bletchley who had come especially for the occasion. While we enjoyed refreshments afterwards, Brenden explained that a few days earlier he had also visited St Thomas More Catholic Secondary School in Bedford and had spoken to over 100 students.  Brenden has been visiting numerous Catholic schools throughout Our Lady’s month of May.

Brenden spent the afternoon at Holy Cross Church, where he gave a spiritual address for Confirmandee and spoke again at the 6.00pm Pentecost Vigil Mass.

It was a wonderful, spiritually uplifting day; Brenden’s devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, who always points us to Jesus, shone through. We also learnt even more amazing scientific facts about the Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Guadalupe on St Juan Diego’s tilma.

The Easter Story Trail

The Easter Story Trail was brought to Bedford about seven years ago by Goldington Churches Together. Children from local schools are taken around by a story teller. This year it was held at Priory Church and over 300 children visited.

Missio Lent Workshops

Students of St Thomas More Catholic School (Brickhill) shared a Lent morning with Sheila Isaac from Missio and our own Sue Barter who is assisting with this papal charity through its school’s work.  An informative and prayerful assembly was followed by interactive workshops for Year 8 which considered how to look at life through a different lens! Sheila and Sue also met with representatives of our other Catholic schools, St John Rigby (Goldington) & St Joseph’s and St Gregory’s (Biddenham).

28337785_1647385928672593_1922155095446616164_o

Burying the Alleluia Banner – Lent 2018

After Mass on the 11th February (the Sunday before Ash Wednesday), we buried the ALLELUIA BANNER created by our First Holy Communion candidates!

We give thanks for everyone who helped to create the banner, to those who dug the hole in the Church grounds, to those who took photographs, to our young people for their enthusiastic singing of various Alleluia chants and to all who came and participated in the solemn burial.  It was great fun!

People are encouraged to watch where the banner was planted (it is marked) for a miracle will take place there!  Where the banner is planted often daffodils emerge; these beautiful flowers are closely associated with death and rebirth and thus with the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Why bury the Alleluia banner?  “Alleluia” comes to us from Hebrew and it means “praise God”. Traditionally, it has been seen as the chief form of praise of the great choirs of angels; of they who worship before the throne of God in Heaven.  “Alleluia” is most closely associated with the Resurrection of Jesus Christ and therefore we omit this word from the liturgy during Lent.

Farewell Fr. Jonathan – Bedford 2017

Holy Cross Church Bedford Diamond Jubilee 1957 – 2017

Holy Cross Boat Trip Social, August 2017

On a blustery August afternoon, a group of twenty Holy Cross parishioners boarded the John Bunyan boat for a cruise along the river. Once everyone was settled in, we were off leaving the shopping centre behind and heading towards the Embankment and the castle mound, past Priory Marina and eventually turning around near the Barns Hotel.

The boat soon filled with lively chatter as people tried to work out exactly where they were; the view of the most familiar places is quite different from the river. Some peered through the waterside willows in search of herons, kingfishers and other signs of wildlife while others reminisced over cups of tea.

Delicious cakes were shared amongst the party to celebrate the 53rd Wedding Anniversary of one happy couple, Mr and Mrs Simmonds, who had booked the trip for the occasion, only to discover that there were two other couples who were also celebrating anniversaries. In total they would have celebrated over a century of married life!

The boat trip, organised by the Social Committee, was a lovely experience not just for its leisurely pace and opportunity to enjoy the river environment, but also because it allowed people of all age groups to come together in friendship and enjoy each other’s company.