Our Priests The Parish priest is Fr Shaun Braiden
For the next two years we have Fr Francis Kochupaliath as an assistant priest. He is from the Kerala region of India and belongs to a religious congregation The Society of St Paul. He was ordained in 1995. He writes ” I come from the Southern State of India called Kerala and belong to a religious congregation of the Society of St Paul. The Society of St Paul , often known as St Paul’s or Paulines was founded by Blessed James Alberione in Italy and is engaged in the mission of media apostolate, especially publishing and media education. to know more about St Paul’s , please visit www.stpauls.org.uk
I joined the society of St Paul’s in 1983 and after completing my initial formation and Bachelor’s degrees in English, Philosophy and Theology I was ordained in 1995. My first assignment after my ordination was as the Rector of the junior brothers doing their Bachelor’s degree.
From 1999 I worked as the Director of Import and Export division of St Paul’s and regularly attended trade fairs overseas to meet Catholic Publishers to procure, especially, books in areas of philosophy, psychology and theology for the seminaries in India and to export our publications overseas.
In 2004 I moved to Australia and did my Masters in Business Administration and worked as the General Director of our activities of that Region for ten years. In March, 2014 I came to London as the delegate of the Provincial Superior and the coordinator of our activities in UK and Ireland.
After completing my 3 year term of service , in June 2017 with the permission of our Major superiors and Bishop John I came to St Mary’s at Oswaldtwistle for a 6 month sabbatical and for the first time to have some parish pastoral experience. After my sabbatical , I assisted 6 months each in the parishes of SS Peter and Paul , and at St James and All Souls. I look forward to another two years of very enriching pastoral experience in the Diocese of Salford and assist Fr Shaun Braiden.
The retired Canon Kevin Kenny continues to live in the parish in which he served for many years and assists at mass at St Mary and St John the Baptist on most Sundays.
Representatives from the three churches meet as a Parish Committee. Topics discussed included the Memorial Garden, building works, car parking, the website and fund raising. The current representatives are St Peter’s – Mick Ashcroft and Kathleen Mitchell, St John Vianney’s- Lynda Corban and Keith Murray, the Priory – Anne Wright and Joe Slater. They will serve until April 2020. The next meeting is scheduled for January 14th at St Peter’s. . If you wish to raise any issues please contact your church representative.
Many of the tasks below, for which job descriptions are available, are undertaken on a rota basis so if you want to join a rota please contact Fr Shaun, who will pass on your details to the relevant person.
Keyholders, greeters, and setting up the church for Mass We have volunteers who open up and close the churches after services and prepare the altar, missals and welcome people into the church, guide them to places when the church is full, take the collections, count the offerings, deal with the banking.
Organists and choir We have two organists Alan Briggs and Robert Jaskowski. Anyone who would like to join the choir would be very welcome.
Eucharistic ministers There is a strong tradition of lay involvement in the parish and this is demonstrated by the significant number of Eucharistic Ministers who help distribute Holy Communion during the mass and to those housebound or in care homes.
Altar Servers We have a small number of Altar Servers, more would be welcome
Flower arrangers There are talented people who help decorate the church and altar with flowers Occasionally we will ask for special donations to support their efforts to make sure the church looks its best.
Cleaners Although our churches are not used as much as they were formerly attendances at the weekend have increased and so we rely on a small group of people who clean the churches on a weekly basis.
Readers At all masses people are able to help proclaim the word of God by reading the Epistle, Psalm and Allelluia verse. This ministry of reading is open to anyone who has the ability.
Catechists People who help involve our children by assisting with the sacramental programme or the Children’s liturgy are important in helping parents pass on their faith to their children.
Newsletter /Website We are committed to making sure that parishioners are kept informed about Parish Life and so produce a weekly newsletter and also maintain a website. The newsletter is put together by Fr Shaun so if you have information you wish to be included please let him know by the Thursday before the weekend you want the information to appear. The newsletter will be posted on the website along with other material. If you would like to be involved in administering the website, please contact Joe Slater.
Archives and records Within our parish we have a significant number of documents such as registers of Baptisms and weddings, Old newsletters , documents about the events that have been held over many years , financial records, plans of the buildings. The material is quite extensive and continues to grow. There are some Priory records on the Lancashire on line parish clerk website including a write up about the church and records of baptisms marriages and burials. search at www.lan-opc.org.uk/pleasington/priory/index.html .
some of the registers for St Peter’s are held in the Presbytery. Any other information including registers will be held at either the Lancashire Archives in Preston or in the Salford Diocesan Archives . There is no cost for seeing the registers.
Graveyard Our Archivist also has details of who is buried where in the grave yard at Pleasington Priory. The graveyard is quite extensive and to keep it tidy and the grass and weeds under control requires quite some time. Help is always needed with this task. If you need any information about the graveyard and help in locating a grave the person to contact is Martin Child He is at the priory most Sundays.
Safeguarding For some of the roles set out above volunteers will have to apply for clearance via the Disclosure and barring scheme. This means that besides completing a form and having references taken up you will need to provide documents about your identity to allow for a check to be made on the national database which keeps records of criminal offences. We have three safeguarding representatives, any one of whom can help with the recruitment process. Volunteers are expected to sign a letter of agreement one copy of which will be kept on file.
Groups The Parish is part of the universal Catholic church and so has links with a number of bodies such as CAFOD, Caritas, Aid to the Church in Need, The Walsingham Association.
It is good practice to have a succession plan
REMEMBER NO ONE IS IRREPLACEABLE AND ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS ANY VOLUNTEER CAN DO IS TO MAKE SURE THEY HAVE SOMEONE TO WHOM THEY CAN HAND OVER THE TASK WHEN THEY ARE NO LONGER ABLE OR NO LONGER WANT TO DO IT.