Our Community

Pope Francis tells us that as catholics we should look out to the community in which we live. He said …
“The parish is the presence of the Church in a given territory, an environment for hearing God’s word, for growth in the Christian life, for dialogue, proclamation, charitable outreach, worship and celebration. In all its activities the parish encourages and trains its members to be evangelisers. It is a community of communities, a sanctuary where the thirsty come to drink in the midst of their journey, and a centre of constant missionary outreach”.

On the right are contacts for some key initiatives and organisations within our local and international community.

Aid Partnerships

Mahola (Aid) Project, Cameroon
9th March – Mahola Day– African Drums workshop
(drop-in between 2-4pm,  African music in Church (3 sessions of African drumming/percussion (about 45 minutes each) in the afternoon starting at 3, 4 and 5pm) , Mass at (6.30-7.30pm), African food, music, photos and raffle -7.30-10pm. Please do join us  in Greyfriars on Saturday 9 March (just drop in when you have the time). All ages and levels are welcome. Please feel free to also join us, if you just wish to watch and listen. The sessions will be followed by mass at 6.30pm (as usual) and African music, food and dance after mass. Contact Deacon Mario at …. mario.kossmann@yahoo.fr .

The ‘Mahola’ (this means ‘Aid’ in the Bassa language) project is concerned with the development of a local health care system in a deprived area of Cameroon in central Africa. This system will include educational projects for school children, the establishment of an extended network of trained and well equipped first aiders, bursaries for future nurses and mid-wives, an ambulance service and a health centre – in the rain forest about 60 kilometres from the capital Yaoundé. The project puts a strong emphasis on the protection of the environment, education in general, equal opportunities and the protection of children and vulnerable adults. The local population has organised themselves and elected a steering committee to oversee and manage the operation of this healthcare system over time, provided a plot of land for the health centre and committed to produce some of the building materials such as bricks locally, all free of charge.

The project entered the detailed design phase last September and is currently completing this phase, with the design documents being signed off by the local Steering Committee in the next few months during our next trip to the country (by our local coordinator who comes from the region but lives in the UK).
Please do contact us (Deacon Mario) if you wish to join us and/or have any questions about the project; and please keep informed about the project via our website www.maholaproject.org (or via Twitter or Facebook).
 
The needs of the local population are ones that we take for granted. The prime needs are … 
  • treatment and protection from Malaria, HIV, Cholera and Pneumonia etc.;
  • medical care in case of emergencies and associated transport;
  • roads, green electricity, clean running water, recycling and waste disposal;
  • provision of pastoral and spiritual care, education, training and employment prospects..

More information and pictures are available at www.facebook.com/maholaproject
Contact – Mario Kossmann at mario.kossmann@yahoo.fr


CAFOD
CAFOD is an international aid agency working to alleviate poverty and suffering in developing countries.

CAFOD’s aims are …


Pietrelcina (Padre Pio School)
Avda narangaiĦ, Los Olibos, Lima 39 Peru
 – contact Maria Sylva von Bomsdorf, at masyvon@hotmail.com
What a joy to hear and then to meet Sylva, after Mass. It is staggering to realise that the school has only recently acquired running water and a proper sewage system. We take so much for granted.
We wish her well in the library project and look forward to hearing of success in getting pupils used to returning the books they borrow!!
Sylva left  these photographs of the school. The primary school anniversary for which all of the fancy dress costumes are made from recycled material – the yellow dress being fashioned from paper which was stiffened by paint.  It seems that poverty cannot stifle human creativity.
Pupils the world over can show the same range of attention – from rapt to “May I go home soon?

But this group  testify to the success of the project.

Local Links

Clevedon Foodbank   

Donations of food may be made at Unit 1, Knowles Rd, Clevedon BS21 7XS on Mondays and Fridays between 1.30-3.30pm. or in the donation box at the back of our church in Clevedon.   If you are unsure as to what foodstuffs are needed, the foodbank website always has a list of current shortages and/or special needs.  To see and/or print the suggested  shopping list click here

Clevedon and District Foodbank: Clevedon and District Foodbank Trustees have asked if we could bring this appeal to the attention of parishioners: “The number of people helped by Clevedon and District Foodbank continues to grow – over 1,000 adults and a similar number of children. We also supplied Christmas hampers, and, during the school holidays, food bags to children normally receiving free school meals. We have amazing support from the local community, schools, churches and other organisations and receive around 9000kgs of food donations per year. These donations need to be stored and distributed and we currently have a warehouse and a storage unit, for which we pay rent, we also need to cover our running costs, admin, insurances etc.

We are appealing to our supporters for help with these financial demands. Any contribution, however small, would be greatly valued, especially helpful would be regular donations by standing order. If you are able to help us a standing order form click here or, contact us if you would prefer a paper copy of the form or to make a one off payment. Email: info@clevedondistrict.foodbank.org.uk Tel: 07722769529”

Clevedon Foodbank has reached it’s 4th anniversary and is currently supporting some 50-60 families across our area in this way to provide tasty but nutritious meals for children usually fed for free in term time at school. They would especially welcome the following: Pasta sauce (preferably in packets) Baked beans with pork sausages, Tinned pasta with meatballs/sausages Tinned stew, Big soup, Tuna fish, Sweetcorn, Fruit juice (longlife) Tinned fruit. Donations of these particular items would be greatly appreciated. This is a grand local achievement, but it is a sad sign of the level of poverty that exists within our community. Perhaps we can prod ourselves to remember to support the Foodbank. 

Contact: by email info@clevedondistrict.foodbank.org.uk or tel: 0772276 9529
Office hours are Monday & Friday 1330hrs – 1530hrs at 37 Old Street, Clevedon. BS21 6DA


Clevedon Care

Clevedon Care is a registered charity which has been established since1987 taking members
of the Clevedon
Community to medical appointments in the area – including all the main hospitals in Bristol, and as far as London in some circumstances. In addition they take relatives for hospital visits for a maximum of one hour. For such service they were honoured to receive the Queens Award for Voluntary Service in October 2010 (which is on view in the Riverside Surgery).

Clevedon Care consists of an established team of volunteers (50 drivers and 40 office staff). The office is in St John’s Hall (Tel: 01275 343677) and is open from 9.30 to 12.30 in the morning and 2.00 to 4.30 in the afternoon from Monday to Friday.

To date it looks as if they may reach 5,000 jobs this year, which will be a record. The demand is increasing from year to year. They are only allowed to pick up clients in the immediate Clevedon area as laid down by the Charities Commission (the boundaries are Tickenham, Walton St Mary and Kingston Seymour).

They are always looking for volunteer drivers and office staff so please do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested.

Contact: Jennifer Lewis, Secretary jenniferlewis9603@fsnet.co.uk Tel 01275 878637


Andrew House

RE:MISSION is a recently launched charity through which Andrew House is free to concentrate on its work with men who have come through drug and alcohol rehabilitation schemes.  They are offered accommodation and a programme that gives them the opportunity to improve their quality of life, preparing them to live independently.

See more at http://www.standrews-clevedon.org.uk/andrew-house

Contact: Jeff Peacock at jeff.peacock@btinternet.com Tel 075 4049 7796


The Barn  

The Barn is used by local community groups covering all ages and abilities. and has developed a reputation as a welcoming source of local information and aims to provide as broad a selection as possible. If you need local details or have information which may be of use to others in the community please let us know.

Contact: Annie Smith, Centre Manager at office@thebarnclevedon.com Tel: 01275 343990


Clevedon YMCA

Clevedon YMCA is a local Christian charity. It aims to build a thriving and active community that is transforming lives.We focus on young people and help them play an active and fulfilling role within their own communities by providing a wide array of community based activities and services to help meet local needs. Locally we provide …

After School Cafe
YMCA in Marson Road, Clevedon is an after school cafe for your child. Is your child Year 7 -11 ( age 11-16)? Send them along to us and to meet new friends. We guarantee Fun, lots to do & a great time for all, For more info please come and see us or call us on 01275 878405
Open Monday Wednesday & Thursday. It’s a FREE service for your child. (we charge 10p per slice of toast) tea coffee & hot chocolate is free
Board games, refreshments, football, sport & so much more.
 

 
YWednesday, 
A group for adults with a learning disability. 7.30-9.30 ( term time only) Fantastic session. We run mainly on volunteers. We have disco, line dancing, cake decorating and much more
 Volunteers
We are always in need of volunteers. We could not do our youth work without their help. If you and/or a friend is interested please email or call me and I will be happy to show you around and chat about opportunities
 
Are you looking for a charity to support in 2015. Would you like to raise money for a local charity that serves the community and Youth of Clevedon? If so, Clevedon YMCA are always trying to raise funds in the community – we are a small local charity doing great work with many of YOUR children. Funding and donations are vital for the YMCA to continue the great work they do. Please contact us for more details

Contact:  clevedonymca@gmail.com Tel: 01275 878405


Julian Trust  

The Julian Trust runs the Bristol Night Shelter which supports homeless and vulnerable people sleeping rough in Bristol. This work is supported by donations from individuals and organisations throughout the Bristol area, and our parish has a donation box for food etc.

Contact helpdesk@juliantrust.org.uk Tel: 0117 924 4604 (evenings only)


Borderlands

Borderlands is a charity that supports disadvantaged and excluded people to improve their lives and the community in which they live.

Borderlands works especially with people seeking asylum in the UK and refugees from other countries; they support people who have been trafficked and trapped in domestic service or the sex industry.

People who face great challenges and live difficult lives need support. Borderlands offers hope to people who may see themselves as lost or abandoned and support to find a way forward.

Contact enquiries@borderlands.uk.com Tel: 07460 085 058

Our parish have recently made a substantial donation to this charity and have received a letter of thanks from Borderlands. To view the thank you letter, please click here

To watch a video about the work of Borderlands, click here.


Standbrook Guides

Standbrook produce  valuable local guide booklets and assist in advertising the Friary Fayre and other parish events. See www.standbook-guides.com

Church Links

We live in a largely Christian community and often join other church groups in spiritual and social activities. Together we are stronger.

CTIC (Churches together in Clevedon)

We love God and we love Clevedon. Our churches are full of people who have stories of how God has shown His amazing love and power to change lives. We would really welcome you to any of our churches to share in what God has done, is doing and can do!
Full details of CTIC members and a diary of the activities within the eleven churches that make up CTIC further info may be obtained from Kelly Croxton at cticcomms@gmail.com 

 To view the events and services of the CTIC members click here 


Churches Together in Somerset

We aim to provide a personal link with local ecumenical group in a local area working on a more informal basis to encourage and nurture all local ecumenism in the area and to initiate such activity where appropriate.  
contact Major Alan Dixon, County Ecumenical Officer at sctogether@phonecoop.coop    tel 07496 674331


Prayer4 Clevedon
Prayer 4 Clevedon is a simple vision – Christians from all aspects of life in the town, gathering to pray together for the town. It is also expressed this way:“In our dreams we see crime rates dropping, violence decreasing, drug dealers disappearing, prostitution declining, apathy diminishing.  We see business booming, housing improving, schools flourishing and hope rising”
See more at here  or contact Tim Simpson at t.simpson@uk.iccc.net


Clevedon Baptist Church (Youth Group)
Our vision is to be Living with a purpose, Loving Jesus and our neighbours and Belonging to a distinctive Christian community.
We have a dedicated team of youth leaders providing a range of weekly activities with and for young people aged 11-18. We also have plenty of things for other ages too: Toddlers, Luncheon Club for older folk, Open Doors coffee mornings, Café Church alongside the worship service on Sundays, home groups for everyone, bible studies, craft mornings, and a varied programme on Sunday evenings.

We welcome people of all faiths and none to come ‘just looking’. For more click here
c/o Alex Drew, The Administrator at clevedonbaptistchurchoffice@gmail.com   tel: 01275 876878


Portishead Deanery(Youth Work)
From here we promote, facilitate and support the youth work activity throughout the Portishead Deanery – which is part of the Diocese of Bath and Wells. Recently our Youth Worker, Neil Wylie has taken on responsibility as Chaplain to Clevedon School.

– Contact Neil Wylie at neilwylie@hotmail.co.uk tel: 077 2598 6802

Catholic Organisations

Apostleship of the Sea      

The Apostleship of the Sea is a Catholic charity supporting seafarers worldwide.

They provide practical and pastoral care to all seafarers, regardless of nationality, belief or race. Our port chaplains and volunteer ship visitors welcome seafarers, offer welfare services and advice, practical help, care and friendship. The Apostleship of the Sea in Great Britain is part of an international network known to the maritime world as Stella Maris, working in 311 ports with 216 port chaplains around the world.
The parish supports AoS annually via the Sea Sunday collection, held on the second Sunday in July each year. This is a valued contribution and allows them to continue their vital work with seafarers.

For more information click here  


Catenians

Men committed to their faith, their families, to those in need and to each other.   The Catenians provide catholic laymen and their families with a supportive social network built on friendships developed through their shared faith and values. We enjoy the good times and share the bad by offering practical and spiritual support.  Catenians are active supporters of the church, and you’ll find Catenians busy in all aspects of parish life.  Fundraising is not our main aim. but each year we raise over £300,000 for good causes, and enjoy ourselves while doing so. We are major supporters of the Office for Vocations. We help young people to attend events such as the Diocesan Youth Camp and the Flame 17 Festival at Wembley in March 2017. We also sponsor young people aged 18-25 to serve others at home or overseas. Last year the Catenians supported young Catholics on projects in 53 different countries.
For more information click here   or contact  Joe Norman, Membership Officer         01275 877180 or email here 


SVP (St Vincent de Paul Society)
The SVP turns concern into action and are involved in a wide range of activities which support the sick, the disabled, the housebound, the lonely and other disadvantaged people. Our work includes befriending people in homes, hostels,hospitals and prisons.
We meet, for an hour, at 7pm on every second Tuesday – New members are always welcome please contact any member of the Conference through the Parish Office – email here . clevedon@friar.org or tel: 01275 873205

For more information on the Society click here

Ecumenical Care Home Services
Ecumenical Care Home Services
We  serve the following care homes in Clevedon with ecumenical church services including holy communion for those who can partake…
– Mount Elton  – Saturdays at 11am
– Clevedon Court  – Saturdays at 11am
– Gorselands  – Sundays following 10am mass at Clevedon
– Worcester Lodge – 3.15 on Tuesdays – these are jointly run with the Baptist Church
N.B. All services at Mount Elton, Clevedon Court and Gorselands have to finish by noon so that the residents can have their lunch.
for details of dates and locations contact Deacon Mario at mario.kossmann@yahoo.fr 
 
These services are supported by a group of about 20 highly dedicated volunteers (not all at the same time) from Yatton, Portishead and Clevedon, depending on their availability. All services are usually scheduled several weeks in advance. 
 
If you wish to join us for any of these ecumenical services, please do let us know beforehand if you can, especially if you need a lift, or if you would like to play an instrument, sing the psalm, do a reading etc.; or just wait for us outside in front of the care home a few minutes before the service starts. Please do not hesitate to contact us (Carmel Wear or Deacon Mario) if you have any questions. There is no obligation or rota for volunteers, so you can just come along to have a look and feel if this ministry is for you, or you can come whenever you feel like it and you have the time.
Refugees

Practical help needed
We recently received the following letter from an Officer within North Somerset Council – Can you help? Do you know someone who can?…

I am employed by North Somerset Council as the project officer for the Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme (VPRS) and as such we are trying to help Syrian refugees fleeing the middle east through the Home Office. One of my roles is to try and locate accommodation for such families locally in North Somerset. To date we have rehoused two families in Portishead, two in Weston and two in Nailsea and we are potentially looking at another two families coming to WSM in the early part of this year.
So far, we have had tremendous support for the families in Nailsea through the CTND (Janet PAGE) and could not have managed without their help or support.
Due to the problems regarding homelessness we are not allowed to apply for social housing but are reliant on charity, church groups, generous or philanthropic landlords to help find accommodation for the scheme. Due to the families fleeing with very little in the way of possessions and finance any accommodation needs to be at the local housing authority rate. Each resettled family (only family groups taken) will have a dedicated support worker from the council to help them adjust to their new lives.
I am therefore contacting you to ask if there is anything your group could do to help by approaching your members in the search for finding accommodation please.
I am willing to attend any meetings to offer more information or answer any questions that you may have.

Thank You

Paul Jones

Walk in their Footsteps – 22nd September 2018
In a persistent and very wetting rain a small but hearty band followed Vincent McLaughlin as he led us in short readings of the reality experienced by refugees in different parts of our world. On this walk from the Narthex in Clevedon down to the sea front, around Poet’s Walk and back to the church, the rain made it easier to feel some small part of the dispiriting fate of many millions who are displaced  refugees. May their fate be eased by you Lord. 

Prayer for Migrants and Refugees
Lord Jesus, before your death Peter denied you out of fear of the crowd, afterwards your disciples gathered in the upper room out of fear of being different. Today we too, like your disciples, can be filled with fear, doubt and even suspicion as the refugee crisis looms large again in Calais and Dunkirk. Bring to us too Lord, the strength of the Holy Spirit so that we might welcome refugees as your children and as our brothers and sisters in your name. Lord hear us

A year of communal prayer ended on 28th September 2016 –  Thus ended our communal year of prayer for refugees and for peace. The final Prayer Hour  included three very varied testimonials. Click here to read them.

The hour also incorporated the following hymns …

.. Ubi caritas est ..  click here to listen
.. Oh, Lord hear my call ..click here to listen
.. Make me a channel of your peace ..click here to listen

Thanks to Elizabeth and Patrick Dillon and to Paul and Sandy Gale for organising the sessions.


How can we, in Clevedon respond to the current, on-going Refugee Crisis

A parish meeting met to discuss this and agreed the following …

  • Arrange monthly Prayer Hours – date and time to be announced
  • Invite parishioners to submit prayers to Greyfriars Prayer Group via the Parish Office
  • Invite parishioners to join any of the three Prayer Groups
  • Raise financial help for refugees and donate this to CAFOD’s Syrian Refugee Appeal
    – Click here for  http://www.cafod.org.uk/Give/Donate-to-Emergencies/Syria-Crisis-Appeal
  • CAFOD envelopes and tins will also be made available for donations
  • If/when Refugees arrived in Clevedon their most pressing need would be for welcoming love, acceptance and stability.
    and
  • of course individual, or family, prayers will be a massive help

It was decided to postpone specific action on Emergency Fund, Training Refugees and Provision of Shelter/Accommodation until there were indications of Refugees arriving in/around Clevedon.  Before ending the meeting with ‘The Lord’s Prayer” Fr Reg reminded us that the opening words were “Our Father” and that the “Our” was all inclusive – friends, neighbours, strangers enemies even!!

Click here to see the full minutes of the meeting

Pope Francis’ challenge to Christian Communities – September 2016

Here in his words is the challenge posed by of Pope Francis as, this month, he addressed Jesuits attending a conference of  entitled “Global Migration and Refugee Crisis”.

 He said “In the face of tens of thousands of persons forcibly displaced worldwide, it is important to move beyond the statistics and to realise that migrants and refugees are no different than our own family members and friends”.

“Each one of them”, he added “has a name, a face and a story as well as an unalienable right to live in peace and to aspire to a better future for their sons and daughters.”

 He recalled the life of St Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Jesuits, when he claimed “that at this place and time in history, there is a great need for men and women who hear the cry of the poor and who respond with mercy and generosity.“

He asked that our responses to the refugee crisis should be “through acts of mercy that promote the refugees’ integration into European communities” and he added that we should “remember that authentic hospitality is a profound gospel value that nurtures love and is our greatest security against hateful acts of terrorism.”

Finally, the Holy Father urged us to “transform our communities into places of welcome where all God’s children have the opportunity not simply to survive, but to grow, to flourish and to bear fruit.”

Greyfriars Friendship Club

The Greyfriars Friendship Club was set up  in September 2015 and it aims to provide an opportunity for people living alone or who are housebound– or indeed any one who would like to join in – gather together for tea and good company. Where needed, transport is provided to help those wishing to attend.   

About 50 guests have attended since we started – the average each month being about 24. The team has grown to eleven, with three helpers and four drivers. New team members, helpers and drivers are always welcome.

The New Year got off to a brilliant start to the new year with a visit by two police dog handlers and their four dogs! They gave us an excellent and informative talk followed by a lively demonstration of the dogs in action – at least two members were arrested for having strange substances in their possession!!!! The policeman & woman then stayed for tea with us and continued to chat about their work.

A varied programme of Thursday meetings (2pm – 4pm) will continue through 2019.