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The Dean’s Weekly Message – 25 February 2018 Posted on Sunday 25 February 2018

Second Sunday of Lent
Family Fast day was last Friday and we are encouraged to support the work of Cafod in the retiring collection this weekend. Malnutrition is still the cause of about three million deaths of young children throughout the world each year. Our fasting, prayer and donations can help to ensure that more of God’s children have enough to eat. For every pound that is donated to Cafod, the UK Government will also donate £1 which means that our contributions can have twice the impact to relieve hunger and suffering. Through small acts of charity and penance during Lent may we help to transform the lives of others less fortunate than ourselves.

This Sunday afternoon there will be an extended afternoon service of Choral Evening Prayer concluding in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel with Exposition and Benediction. We have been encouraged to give more of a prominence to Eucharistic Adoration in the months leading up to the Eucharistic Congress, therefore there will be a number of these longer Sunday afternoon services including benediction when possible. There will also be a joint city centre and north Liverpool deaneries Holy Hour led by Archbishop Malcolm at 7.30pm in St Francis de Sales on Thursday, 8th March.

The arrangements for the Eucharistic Congress in Liverpool from 7-9th September are now well underway with timetables all confirmed, booking forms for delegates needing to be completed and a clearer picture of what will take place across the city over that weekend. Across the various constituencies within the city centre deanery, (incorporating the University Chaplaincy, Blessed Sacrament Shrine, St Vincent’s, the Hospital Chaplaincy and the Cathedral) we have an allocation of 15 tickets for delegates at the Arena – so not many of us will have the possibility of attending the main events. However many of the fringe events which are free and open to all will be really interesting and will take place in all the churches and venues around the city centre. There will be exhibitions on archived history of church in this country during penal and more recent times and another on eucharistic miracles, a chance to hear Jimmy Mcgovern explain how he came to write the series ‘Broken’ and what he based the script on, a ‘Nightfever’ drop in for young adults , and lots of workshops talks and events as well as opportunities for prayer and adoration. All of these would run throughout the weekend and will provide opportunities for all ages to be involved in what will be the most significant gathering of the church in this country to celebrate and reflect and pray together in recent times.

This Wednesdays Lenten Talk at 6.30pm is by Paul O’Brien who manages our local charity ‘Micah’ (incorporating the Hope+ food bank and Volition employment training scheme). He will speak from first hand experience of the development and impact that the charity has had in providing food to those in need and helping people take the first steps to employment. Despite having the same surname we are not related in any way.

Canon Anthony O’Brien
Cathedral Dean