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Saturday 18th November 2023 – Saturday 25th November 2023


Thirty- third Week of Ordinary Time

Dear parishioners,

St Thomas More Catholic Primary School recently had its second inspection this calendar year. The first was from the Diocese to look at the religious life of the school and the second was from the state, the (in?) famous OFSTED which takes place at every school, every four years. Both these inspections have come at a time of change in the school, with the recent admission into an Academy Trust called SELCAT and so becoming part of a group of ten catholic schools in the Archdiocese and then there was the change of Head at the start of this year.

We have been part of SELCAT for just over a year now and it has proven a benefit to our school in its support of our head and the staff and the sharing of resources and ideas with other schools. A month into the new term Mrs Grace Lodge, our new Head received the call announcing an OFSTED inspection. Advanced warning is never given for such inspections, so that special provisions are not put in place and the inspectors can see the school in relatively normal circumstances. It also tests a school’s ability to cope with pressure, because hardly a week (or day even?) goes by in a school without some situation needing immediate attention. Now under the leadership of our new head of school, the excellent work over many years has produced a strong school culture which was demonstrated by pupils and staff to the inspectors.

Many of you have children at our school, and even more of you had children or even grandchildren there and remember well the foundation of the school. Mrs Lodge has written the following letter to you all:

Below are some of the points noted by OFSTED about St Thomas More Catholic Primary School:

So not only has our school been rated outstanding in its catholic life and identity by the Diocese but it has been, thanks to hard work and dedication, outstanding by OFSTED. We thank God and from this high point - moving forwards – our school will not rest but confidently continue to do more and be more for the catholic education of our children, placing our trust in the Sacred Heart of Jesus.


Please continue to pray for the Palestinian people who are having greater and greater suffering inflicted upon them and read the new letter from ‘Embrace the Middle East’ below regarding the destruction of all hospital services now in Gaza.

On Friday evening, the UN announced that as a direct result of the inhumane actions of the UK government’s ally Israel, the Palestinian people also face imminent starvation. It is known many thousands have been killed, with many more uncounted under the rubble of bombed apartment blocks. The people’s homes are destroyed, they cannot go anywhere, they are being continually bombed and no food, water or fuel is reaching them.

We must no longer look away from this suffering, which would be unacceptable to western governments if inflicted by other countries. No country should be the exception to international law.

Not only are Palestinians the closest neighbours of Israelis, they are our neighbours, and near to Gaza are the beaches of Cyprus or Sharm el Sheikh where many British go on holiday. Let us remember the Lord’s command ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and all your strength and love your neighbour as yourself’. As ordinary people are made victims of an indiscrimate revenge for Hamas members hiding among them, God help them, because there is no help for them from the powers of this dark world.

Winter Warmer Drop-In at St Thomas More provided by the MINI VINNIES of our Primary School. Message from Mrs Wendy McClumpha:

In a world where compassion knows no boundaries…

where every act of kindness makes a difference…

where hope is served alongside hearty meals…

We invite you to join us at the St Thomas More Church Hall on Monday 27th November between 6-8pm for a warm meal.

We are more than just a kitchen; we are a community of caring hearts.

Our Mini Vinnies prepare each meal with love and dedication.

Families, children, and friends of St Thomas More Church who experience food poverty are more than welcome.

Our support to you means everything to us. So please come along!!

From the Mini Vinnies group at St Thomas More Catholic Primary School.

Thank you

Best wishes


Continuing the Month of Holy Souls at St Thomas More:

1. Visit the Graves of your departed relatives and friends. ( all the blessings of the graves by local priests have now taken place)

2. Come to our annual Service of Commemoration of the Faithful Departed with Benediction on Sunday 26th November, Feast of Christ the King at 3.00 p.m. followed by tea and cakes.

3. Say the Novena for Holy Souls – our November prayer below.

November Indulgences

As always, a plenary indulgence, applicable only to the Holy Souls, may be gained once in any church either on All Soul’s Day, on the preceding or following Sunday or on the Feast of All Saints, on the usual conditions, viz a visit to a church, where the Creed and Our Father are recited, sacramental confession made, Holy Communion received and a prayer for the pope’s intentions. Those who visit a cemetery between 1st and 8th November and pray for the faithful departed, may obtain a plenary indulgence, applicable to the holy souls ( and at other times a partial indulgence)

Furthermore, a plenary indulgence is granted to all those present, subject to the usual conditions to those who attend our Service at St Thomas More on Sunday 26th November, the Feast of Christ the King at 3.00 p.m. or any church on that day where the Blessed Sacrament is exposed, the consecration of the human race to Christ the King made and the Litany of the Sacred Heart said.

God bless and peace be with you as we pray for Holy Souls,

Fr Jonathon











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