Keeping in Touch 31st May 2020

Message from Universe publications

The Catholic Universe and the Catholic Times are being merged into a single title.

Our overriding mission is to ensure our faithful Catholics are fully and regularly informed about our Catholic faith and have the benefit of the up to date Catholic church’s view on the many important issues that exist.  Hence our willingness to provide this support to our faithful at no  cost to if  you are in any way able to help us fulfil our mission during this difficult period.

At the moment you are unable to collect your paper at Mass, but you can get it delivered direct to your home every week, POST FREE.   Please go to or call them on 0161 820 5722 and they will arrange for you.

CAFOD Volunteers on line Get Together sessions

Dear friend,

As a valued CAFOD volunteer, I’m writing to invite you to an online get-together. I’d love you to join us because CAFOD has launched a Coronavirus Appeal, and I’m hoping you might be willing to spread awareness about it.

The get-togethers are one hour long and there is a choice of several dates and times, below. (I’m just asking you to join one). They are on Zoom. If you’re not familiar with Zoom, I’d be very happy to chat to you over the phone to help you access it (it’s very easy).

There is a desperate need to help our sisters and brothers in the countries in which CAFOD works. We’ve launched an emergency appeal for funds, because the impact of coronavirus in countries with poor health systems will be devastating. Our local experts are already helping communities. Because parishes aren’t coming together for Mass, we need to get the word out to people who would normally support our work, in case they want to support us now.

We know that it’s a very difficult time for many people, worrying about loved ones or dealing with money concerns. We’re definitely not asking anyone who is struggling to donate to us. But, many people are willing and able to support us so we just want to let them know.

By joining one of our calls you’re not promising to do anything, just to try and help a bit. Please do sign up for one of the slots below – thank you so much! If you’re not sure and want to find out a bit more, do just reply to this and let me know.

Monday 01 June 11.00am-12.00pm

Monday 01 June 2.00pm-3.00pm

Tuesday 02 June 11.00am-12.00pm

Tuesday 02 June 3.00pm-4.00pm

Wednesday 03 June 2.00pm-3.00pm

Wednesday 03 June 4.00pm-5.00pm

Thursday 04 June 11.00am-12.00pm

Thursday 04 June 3.30pm-4.30pm

Friday 05 June 11.00am-12.00pm

Friday 05 June 2.00pm-3.00pm

I look forward to seeing you online.

Best wishes,

Sylvester Mutsigwa 
Community Participation Coordinator – CAFOD

CAFOD Birmingham Volunteer Centre
23 Glebe Street

07919 045658

Appointment of Fr Giles Goward as Rector of St Mary’s College, Oscott.

Following the appointment of Bishop David Oakley as Bishop of Northampton earlier this year, and after a period of consultation and careful reflection, I am delighted to inform you that I have appointed Fr Giles Goward as Rector of St Mary’s College, Oscott.

As you know, Fr Giles has been the Pastoral Director, Director of the Permanent Diaconate Programme and a member of the Formation Staff at Oscott since 2013.  I am very grateful to him for accepting this appointment with the enthusiasm and generosity of spirit which will be familiar to all those who already know him.

Fr Giles will take up his new responsibilities at the end of the current Academic Year on Sunday 28 June 2020.  Until then the Vice-Rector, Fr Paul Keane, will remain in post as Acting Rector.  I wish to thank Fr Paul for his leadership within the Seminary community over recent months.  I know how valuable his continuing work and support as Vice-Rector will be in the years ahead.

I wish to thank the Seminary community at Oscott, all the members of staff and the seminarians, for the dedicated and imaginative ways in which they have continued the task of formation in all its dimensions during the recent coronavirus pandemic.  I know what a great joy it will be when the Seminary can at last re-assemble at St Mary’s College with its new Rector.

Please keep Fr Giles and the Seminary community in your prayers over the coming weeks.  Thank you for your prayerful support for St Mary’s College, Oscott.

With the assurance of my prayers and every kind wish for a blessed and joyful Pentecost ahead.

Yours devotedly in Christ

Bernard Longley

Archbishop of Birmingham

Research Survey of the Catholic Community under/post COVID19

In partnership with Catholic Voices, Professor Francis Davis at the University of Birmingham, together with Professor Leslie Francis of the University of Warwick and Professor Andrew Village of York St John University, are currently undertaking a major survey of UK Christian responses to the present crisis and its potential impact on the future perspectives of UK Christians.This survey is intended to capture specifically Catholic experience and help us understand it better. It takes the form of an online questionnaire. Naturally they need to secure as wide a response as possible and are very keen to make sure that ‘ordinary’ Catholics get a chance to take part so that the findings are as rich as possible.With this in mind they would like to invite the Archdiocese to help via clergy, lay and consecrated associations and parishes.The survey link is here: