Enter Advent with Isaiah

Every Sunday in Advent this year, the first reading at Mass is from the Prophet Isaiah (Old Testament). We hear his name very often during the rest of the year too. But who was he? When and where did he live? What did he say about Jesus? And what does he have to say to us today?

This online talk will give an introduction to the Prophet Isaiah and a way to enter into the spirit of the Advent season in his company. Talk by Fr Jamie McMorrin, St Margaret's, Davidson's Mains, Edinburgh.

Register here.

Faith formation events announced

Discover the beauty and richness of the Catholic Faith with events to help inspire you to greater love of Jesus and His Church.

Our Catechetics events leaflet for 2022/23 will be in parishes soon (along with our annual events diary). Download a copy here.

Catechetics events 2022/23

 22-27 Aug Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

3 Sep Altar Servers’ Day

10 Sep Children’s Liturgy Day

8 Oct Day for Readers: Gospel of John

22 Oct Day for Musicians and Choirs

29 Oct Reflection Day for Diploma Students

5 Nov Talk on Family Relationships

28 Nov Advent Talk Series begins - Zoom event

28 Jan Called and Gifted Workshop

4 Feb Day for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion

18-19 Feb Intentional Disciples Workshop

27 Feb Lent Talk Series begins - Zoom event

4 Mar Catechists’ Day

1 May Easter Talk series begins - Zoom event

All events at the Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Rd, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB (unless otherwise stated). Details of events will be published on this website and on our social media in due course. Events organised by the Catechetics Commission of the Archdiocese. The Archdiocesan Events Diary can be viewed and downloaded here (trifold format).

Watch: Archbishop Cushley on Catholic Education

Archbishop Cushley discusses ‘Catholic Education: Good for Scotland’ with Professor John Charmley from St Mary's University, Twickenham.

Part of the Newman Conversation series, hosted by St Mary's University Twickenham.

Check out the courses St Mary's are running in partnership with the Archdiocese at the new Gillis Campus in Edinburgh here.

Practical Responses to Laudato Si'

Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato si' calls us to hear and respond to the cry of the earth and the poor. In this event, participants can share experience in making practical responses, such as in daily choices and through creative ideas like community gardens. It takes place 10:00-11:30am on Zoom on Saturday 24 April. To register: tinyurl.com/LSiResponses This event is organised by the Caritas, Justice and Peace Commission of the Archdiocese.

EVENT: Couples invited to pray and reflect at online retreat

We're inviting married and engaged couples for a time of prayer and reflection at a special St Valentine's Day mini-retreat.

There will be two excellent short talks specially prepared by Canon John Udris, spiritual director at St Mary's College, Oscott (seminary for the Archdiocese of Birmingham).

The event is organised by the Archdiocesan Commission for Marriage and Family Life, led by Fr Jeremy Milne. He said: "In these times of lockdown stress we are offering couples an opportunity at Valentine's to come together before the Lord to reflect on and, hopefully, appreciate anew the gift and blessing of marriage and the strength that it brings.

"We also want to encourage couples to see their marriage as a call from God to shine his light and share his love in the world, so much needed at this time in history."

Couples' Retreat, Sat 13 Feb, 3:00pm to 4:30pm (Zoom). Register at bit.ly/CouplesRetreat2021 (free event).


The art of being a grandparent in troubled times

Catherine Wiley is on a mission. She wants to combat the isolation and frustration felt by many grandparents, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

So the founder of the Catholic Grandparents Association is inviting those in our Archdiocese to her online Zoom talk on Wednesday (04 November).

"I want to give them confidence and remove some of the fear and anxieties that they may be feeling, particularly now when they may be isolated in their homes."

Covid-19 has amplified the usual challenges faced by grandparents. "Before we had Covid, the recent problems for grandparents was the complexity of different marriage and partner arrangements, child caring arrangements and trying to face the challenges peaceably and with integrity.

"A lot of grandparents sit to one side and can be afraid to open their mouths. Being afraid to speak affects their faith. So this event is to give them the courage and confidence to face the challenges of family life we find ourselves thrust into. We are always there to support our grandchildren."


She added: "We’re all praying for a vaccine, and please God we’ll get one soon, but we’ve already been baptised against despair. Our baptism ‘vaccine’ is against that despair and floundering, and we can forget that.

"Of course the recent eucharistic 'famine' has come at a terrible cost to many grandparents; it’s usually the grey-haired brigade who go to daily Mass.

"Sometimes they have lonely lives, so people need to know they are not on their own. People can be too proud or ashamed to reach out, so we have to reach in, and the only way to do that is through communication."

She added: "It’s about refining the art of being a grandparent in these troubled times. It’s using every gift that God ever gave you."

Grandparents: Our Mission with Catherine Wylie takes place on Zoom at 7pm on Wednesday 04 November. Register here

Cathedral shares faith for those on journey to Catholicism

St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh is sharing the faith by using Zoom to help a group continue their journey towards becoming Catholic.

Around 20 people are taking part in the monthly RCIA sessions - The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults - which is now being held online to overcome COVID-19 restrictions.

Shirley Grieve, who leads the RCIA team, said: “Each year a team of volunteers, guided by our priest, put together a programme aimed at people who want to explore faith and specifically who want to become Catholic.

“We can’t be in the same room and so we have to work hard at making sure people feel supported, comfortable, and not under any pressure. I talked to a few people beforehand to allay anxiety because people are always nervous about coming along – whether that’s to a physical get together or an online group.

“[It is] easier in the sense that it’s less of a commitment now that we're doing monthly rather than a weekly session. We’ve attracted about twenty people which is slightly higher than usual. I think it feels a little safer for folk to try out as an online version of the group.”

Parish priest Father Patrick Burke said: “We’re adjusting to a different way of doing things; rather than face to face, we’re doing it all online.

“We’re incarnational beings, we’re body and soul, and therefore it is not ideal to meet virtually. There’s body language, there’s atmosphere, there’s a nuance that is lost through virtual meetings.”

But he added “I know that in certain places, during that lockdown, where people were disorientated, isolated, and afraid, the regular morning Mass at 10am - streamed on an iPhone - became a fixture on an otherwise formless day. It became spiritual support.”

Shirley added: “None of this happens without God’s gentle guidance allowing folk to find their own place. We are about forming a community and it feels better to meet in person and grow our faith and understanding; it models a loving church. We just have to work hard now at doing this a different way.”

Those interested can still apply for this year’s RCIA programme at St Mary’s Cathedral by contacting the Cathedral office

This article by Corrie Young






EVENTS: Register now for our Zoom talks on prayer

We're continuing our Zoom talks on prayer for each deanery in the Archdiocese. Join Catholics in your parish area for a session at a time that suits you.

Register now by emailing sranna.marie@staned.org.uk (stating what  date and time you want to attend). All talks led by Sr Anna Marie McGuan RSM. Deepen your faith by growing in prayer! ??

Life of Faith: Where does Prayer fit in?  

Fife | Monday 26 October at 2pm and 7pm COMPLETED
West Lothian | Monday 2 November at 2pm and 8pm
Falkirk & Stirling | Monday 9 November at 2pm and 7:30pm
East Lothian & Borders | Monday 16 November at 2pm and 7:30pm
Edinburgh | Monday 22 November at 2pm and 7:30pm

More details about the talks here.

Grandparents: Zoom event on YOUR ministry

Grandparents form probably the largest and most active contingent serving the life of our parishes.

They are our sacristans, passkeepers, readers, extraordinary ministers, catechists and more. Serving parishes like this is fulfilling, but what is often closest to the hearts of grandparents in the Church today is what they can do to keep their families connected to the Church and Catholic faith.

We've invited Catherine Wiley of the Catholic Grandparents Association to host Grandparents: Our Mission on Zoom to discuss this issue and more to give grandparents encouragement and clarity.

She will present a vision of their ministry and point the way towards organising grandparents in our Archdiocese to connect, support each other, share ideas and experience and build their sense of mission in today’s Church.

Grandparents: Our Mission with Catherine Wylie takes place on Zoom at 7pm on Wednesday 04 November. Register here

Getting to Know St Mark

Let Fr Andrew Garden prepare you for St Mark's gospel readings in this Zoom event.

Getting to Know St Mark takes place from 7-8pm on Monday 19 Oct. It will help prepare us for Liturgical Year B, which begins on the first Sunday of Advent, where we hear readings from his gospel each Sunday.

Simply use the link below to attend this online event. We'll see you there!

Link:  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88296929435 (or Meeting ID: 882 9692 9435 - no registration required).