Reconciliation for Christmas at Beachlands
Our priests are offering us the opportunity for confession on Saturday, December 16th between 4 and 4.45pm. This will be held in the hall adjacent to St Hilda's Church. We hope you will be able to take advantage of this opportunity.
A Question for Our Community about the timing of Mass
As part of the changes taking place in our parish the timing of Masses is being looked at. One of the suggestions is that the 6.30pm Saturday Mass in Howick be brought forward to 6pm. This would necessitate our Mass/Liturgy beginning at 4.30pm rather than 5pm. We are being asked to consider this possibility and give our feedback. There will be an opportunity to share your thoughts after Mass next Saturday.
You can find the full text of this important new document by looking on 'The Inside Story' page on this website.
Looking to the future
From February 2024 there will be a change to the services held at Beachlands on a Saturday.
The change is to recognise the impact of the current workload on the health of our priests and to make sure that we are able to continue to provide access to Mass and the Eucharist to the parish community. Already Sunday Masses in Howick have been reduced from four to three.
From February we will have Mass in Beachlands on the first weekend of the month only. On the other Saturdays there will be Liturgy of the Word with Holy Communion led by trained lay ministers. This will enable regular worship and reception of the Eucharist to continue.
'On Sundays, in the absence of an ordained minister, lay persons, appointed by the pastor, lead the prayers, conduct the service of the word, and may give holy communion. These ministers carry out their responsibilities by virtue of their baptism and confirmation. Their appointment, which requires a mandate from the bishop, is usually for a definite time and is to be made known in the assembly where they minister.'
(National Liturgy Office of the Catholic Church in Aotearoa New Zealand)
Pope Francis issues new encyclical on the climate crisis
On Wednesday, 4 October, Pope Francis has issued his Apostolic Exhortation Laudate Deum (Praise God), a follow-up statement on ecology to his Encyclical Laudato si’ on the Care of Our Common Home, which was issued eight years ago. The release of Laudate Deum on St. Francis of Assisi’s liturgical feast day corresponds not only with the end of the Season of Creation, but also with the start of the month-long Synod on Synodality.
In the new document, Pope Francis adds that “our responses have not been adequate” eight years after Laudato si’, in which he revealed his heartfelt worries for the care of our common home; and yet the world continues to feel the consequences.
Reflecting on the global climate problem, Pope Francis argues that increasing incidences of extreme weather events (heat, droughts) are evidence of “a silent disease that affects everyone” and he urges everyone not to dismiss it. He observes that it is no longer feasible to reject the human “anthropic” origins of climate change; it is clear that the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which was steady until the 19th century, has increased in tandem with industrial development during the last 50 years. Furthermore, the recent half-century has experienced the most exceptional rise in temperatures, larger than any time in the previous two thousand years.
You can read the encyclical in full by clicking the link below.
The Synod's working document setting the future of the Church
Catholics in Aotearoa are being urged to read the working document that will guide the synod meeting in Rome in October, and help to set the future direction of the Church.
Instrumentum Laboris is a document of discernment that reflects the voices of the People of God from the previous stages of the synod process. We are invited to prayerfully read and reflect on the document and to pray for the synod's work over the next 18 months.
A copy of Instrumentum Laboris with supporting documents is available here:
Eternal Spirit, who has spread his
wings across the waters since the
beginning of creation,
may your breath give me the strength
to step out into the world at your
the courage to go beyond myself as a
child of God in the name of the Son;
the fortitude to continue even when
the world overwhelms me;
the peace of mind and heart to trust
in the never ending love of the Father.
I ask this in the name of the Father,
Son and Spirit.
© Kevin Saunders 2013
Lord Jesus, I pray you be the song
in my heart.
May your name be on my lips as I
go about this day.
I want to move to the beat of your
To dance to the rhythm of your
Pope's prayer intention - December
Proofs of God
I am breathless Lord, gazing at the
works of your hand.
You have painted the sky with such
The vibrant blues of day, the warm
reds of sun rise and set
are the background to your artistry.
Against this you place the mountain
reaching towards a Heaven they will
I am in awe of you Lord, I wonder at
I awake to breathe in the day you have
© Kevin Saunders 2013
Come Holy Spirit enter our hearts and our lives.
Guide us as we journey forward in faith to meet the challenges of our times.
Grant us the strength to respond faithfully to the call of the Gospel through the witness of our lives.
Inspire within us the commitment to shape a better world.
Lead us to form a community of faith here at this Parish of Our Lady Star of the Sea, (Beachlands), celebrating God’s presence among us and the saving act of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.
Set alight in us the fire of Your love.
This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.
© Kevin Saunders 2000
Caring Group to help our community
They'll know we are Christians by our love. And one way we can show our Christian love is to care for one another, especially in times of need or distress.
Several people have already volunteered their services to start the Group but we need more. We also need to know if there is anyone who needs help from the Caring Group. So, if you would like to be a volunteer who may be called upon from time to time please contact Glenis Clapham (ph: 09 536 6305) or Kathie McNabney (ph: 09 530 8130). If you need some help or know of someone from our community who needs help please let Glenis or Kathie know.
Have you considered joining the parish planned giving programme? No more searching through your purse or wallet at collection time. You will be provided with a set of envelopes which need only be placed in the basket with your donation inside. And best of all at the end of each tax year you will receive a statement of your contributions so you can make a claim on your tax return.
Why not join up now. Contact the parish office or follow the link below for further information. Ph 5348710
How giving a little can mean a lot
‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ (Matthew 25:40)
There are always people in need, sometimes long term, sometimes short term, sometimes in an emergency. The parish Food Bank, run by the Howick branch of the SVDP society, helps many families who find themselves in need of basic food items. Through supporting this we are putting into action the Church's principles of Social Justice: Human Dignity, Preferential Option for the Poor, the Common Good, Solidarity, Subsidiarity, Stewardship and Participation.
When you come to Mass at Beachlands try to bring one food item, a packet or can that can be added to the Food Bank, and place it in the basket on the table when you come in.
Giving a little can mean such a lot.
Please continue to keep Fr John, Allan Saunders, Francis McNabney, Martin Saunders and the members of our community in your prayers.