Charity Walk for Brain Tumour Support

What a scorcher!
Over 40 parishioners, young and not so young, came out after the rain had passed on Sat 21st April to walk together in aid of Brain Tumour Support.
The sun shone down on them all as they walked together for over 3 hours from St John Fisher grounds in Frenchay, through to Downend High Street, up through the whole of Staple Hill and through to Fishponds (with ice creams and plenty of water and sun cream along the way!)
The generous patrons of all the pub gardens along the route and kind passers-by on the high streets and in the park helped them collect £342.80 for the charity.
They then enjoyed a picnic and games in the evening sun.

Thank you to Clare Davis and Angela Serle for helping to organise the event and to all of you who came along for such a lovely afternoon.

Our wonderful Soup Run!

On Sunday 11th March approx. 30 people came along to an open meeting to talk about the homelessness situation in Bristol, what is being done to help and how people can get involved.
Philip McWilliams spoke about The Bristol Soup Run Trust – a charity set up in about 1980 whose aims are to ensure that, on every night of the year, food, advice and other essential supplies are made available, free of charge, to homeless and other needy people on the streets of Bristol.
Philip shared his many years’ of experience with the soup run and we learned that, while some of the clients are homeless and sleep on the streets, others may actually have accommodation of some kind. However, they are often people who lead chaotic lives, possibly down to loneliness, breakdown in relationships drug or alcohol addiction or mental health issues. Clients turn up at the Soup Run for many reasons:  hunger, isolation, companionship, advice.  Whatever the reason, the volunteers are not there to judge:  their job is to provide food, refreshment, a sleeping-bag, a pair of socks, toiletries, advice if needed and, above all, a friendly smile and a willing ear.
St Augustine’s Church in Downend got involved with the trust back in the 90’s and now provides 2 of the 20 teams who operate the 28 day, constant cycle of soup runs for the trust. Theirs operates on alternate Saturdays, nicknamed by some of the clients as ‘Super Saturday’ due to the large amount of food and supplies they are able to offer.
The Church’s teams have 62 ‘back office’ volunteers who, as part of a large rota, take turns to make rolls, heat soup, make cakes and even cook and fill a ‘hot box’ of burgers, pasties or sausages (it is Super Saturday after all!) ready for the ‘front line’ volunteers to take out and serve to those who turn up to the well-established meeting points in the centre of Bristol.
They also have a generously stocked store of essential supplies, such as blankets, sleeping bags, rain ponchos, toiletries, snacks, clothes, underwear etc that parishioners and friends kindly donate throughout the year when stocks run low and a small hard working team organise and prepare for every run – being as creative with the limited storage space as possible!
The soup run is a fantastic success story of the Parish. As Fr Frank Bermingham, Parish Priest, said, “This is a true example of Christianity in action.”
Phil concluded by saying that “If many do a little, something big can happen” proving that the willingness to help others, who, for whatever reason, are in need is alive and well in the community.
If you would like to find out more about the Bristol Soup Run trust, visit their new website at

The first of four 'Way of the Cross' Services will take place on Wednesday, 28th February, at 7.30pm in the Church, helping to prepare us, during Lent, for the Easter Mysteries.
The second Way of the Cross will be on
Sunday 25th March at 1.30pm as part of Deacon John's Mission weekend, then the third is on Wednesday 28th March at 7.30pm
with the final one being run by the children of the parish on Good Friday at 11.30am.

Brain Tumour Support Event - "One Night Only"

A fantastic night was had by all on Friday 9th Feb as the Parish Project team put on a 'festival in one night' - but with no mud and nicer toilets!
4 Bands played to the 150 strong audience and with a bar, tea and cakes, a giant raffle of 38 top prizes, an auction of a signed, framed Laura Kenny (Trott) cycling shirt donated by HSBC, festival glitter, face-painting and tattoos we raised a wonderful £2,560.11!
Thank you to all who came along and supported the night or who bought raffle tickets or donated towards the evening. And a special thank you to everyone who worked so hard to put on such a fantastic evening of entertainment and community spirit.

We have included a photo of Bridie Ryan being presented with her winning raffle ticket of a days pass at a fitness centre... at the fantastic age of 97 we are looking forward to going along with her that day to see how she gets on!

Parish Projects 2017

We are delighted to announce that the total money raised for our international Parish Project, Medicine Sans Frontier, during 2017 was an amazing £3,902.73 (£2,572.73 through the Parish and £1,310 through Bella’s ‘justgiving’ page)
The amount sent to Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, our local Project in memory of James Hedge, was £8,379.97 – although, due to many other events directly for JDRF within our wider parish community over the year in James’ name, the final total raised was £30,377.73

Congratulations to Bella Harding and Liz & Jason Knight for nominating them & to everyone for working so hard to help make such amazing sums of money for both charities.

Christmas Service within our Parishes in Communion

Family Christmas Vigil Masses on Sunday 24th December:
4.00pm-Our Lady of Lourdes                6.00pm-St Paul’s                   6.00pm-St Augustine’s

Carols followed by “Midnight Mass”
9.00pm-St Augustine’s   11.30pm-St Paul’s    11.30-Our Lady of Lourdes

Mass of Christmas Day
9.00am-St Lawrence     9.00am-Our Lady of Lourdes    
10.30am - St Augustine’s    11.00am–St Paul’s

Fr Frank, Fr Jim, Deacons John, Michael, Peter and Vincent
and all who work in the Parish Office
would like to wish you all a very, Merry Christmas and a Happy and Peaceful New Year

Carols by Candlelight

Join us on Sunday 10th December at 3pm for a beautiful, festive Carol service, with traditional carols, modern music from our youth group and something from the smallest ones in the parish, there is something for everyone! With a retiring collection for our local Parish project, JDRF, and refreshments in the hall afterwards (including the Prize Draw announcements!)  everyone is very welcome to this festive afternoon.