Star of the Sea, Castlebay, The Isle of Barra. HS9 5XD.
Phone 01871 810267
Email Addres

Bhileag 3rd January 2021

Sunday & Weekday Masses: to attend any Mass you must contact Canon John Paul –for track & trace purposes- to see if there is availability at Mass. Please phone, text or email Canon John Paul.


Face Coverings: must be worn at every Mass. If you forget to bring a mask –there will be some available in the church.


Recent Death: we remember in our prayers the repose of the soul of Effie MacLean (Effie a dookie) of Borve who peacefully passed away in Hospital in Glasgow. Effie had been flown off the island over a month ago because she was very ill and sadly she passed away on Saturday 2nd January at the age of 73. Our hearts go out to the Michael and all the family at this very sad time. Effie was very much loved by us all and we are all saddened by her death. The family hope to bring Effie back to Barra this coming Wednesday (6th January) and hopefully the Requiem Mass will be on Thursday 7th January in St. Brendan’s Craigston at 11am. Please remember the Requiem Mass is only for the immediate family and relatives only. Let us all remember in our prayers the repose of the soul of Effie. May God grant her the fullness of eternal love, happiness and peace. We extend our prayers of love and sympathy to all the family, relatives & friends at this very sad and difficult time. Eternal rest grant unto her O Lord and let perpetual light shine upon her. May she rest in peace. Amen.


Holy Mass  in Tier 3: the Scottish Government announced recently stricter restrictions. The Western Isles is now placed into Tier 3 and the rest of Scotland is in Tier 4. For the Church (and for Holy Mass) in Tier 3 we can still have a maximum of 50 at church. Those on the mainland will be in Tier 4 which means they can only have 20 at Mass. So nothing really changes for us here in the parish. So weekend Masses are as normal. Baptisms and Funerals are also set at 20 people maximum.

We all continue to follow the Scottish Government guidelines of FACTS- Face Coverings, Avoid crowded places, Clean your hands, Two metre distance and self isolate if you have any symptoms. Let us all continue to follow FACTS and keep ourselves and our islands safe.


Fr. Eric: During the week Fr. Eric was supposed to leave but there was technical problem with the boat so it “was a sign from above” for  Fr Eric to stay a few more days-which he was really happy to do as it gave him more days to walk the shores and hills of the island. Sadly he now leaves on Monday 4th January. Hopefully he may come back and visit us again. We wish Fr Eric every blessing in his ministry & studies for 2021.


Clergy Changes: Bishop Brian announced last week some clergy moves in the Diocese. Fr Colin MacInnes will retire on the 31st January 2021 and will move into the Chapel house in Bornish on South Uist. We all wish Fr. Colin a happy retirement and we thank him for his ministry in the Diocese and in Ecuador. Fr Henry Nkop will look after St. Mary’s Benbecula until the 9th Aril. Then Canon Michael Hutson will become the new Parish Priest of Benbecula. Fr Ronald Campbell who was the assistant Priest in the parish of Lochgilphead will also move and become the new Parish Priest of the Isle of Skye on the 22nd January 2021.


Justice & Peace: next weekend on the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord we will take up a collection for Justice and peace. Also there will be a letter read out at all Masses on behalf of Bishop William Nolan-who is the Bishop in charge of Scotland’s Justice and peace. Let us always remember to pray for the gifts of justice and peace for all people in our world especially as we enter a new year.


Church Christmas Decorations:  we will leave the Church Christmas decorations till after next Sunday’s Masses  (10th January) which is the feast of the Baptism of our Lord and concludes the Christmas season.


Christmas Cards & Gifts: Canon John Paul wishes to thank everyone who gave him a Christmas card or a gift. Your kindness, love and support is very much appreciated. God Bless you all! Happy New Year!


Mon 4th Jan……….No morning Mass           

Tues  5th Jan……….10.00am   EOLIGARRY

Wed 6th Jan……..12 Noon   CRAIGSTON

Thur 7th Jan…….11.00am CRAIGSTON

(Requiem Mass)

Fri 8th Jan……10.00am  VATERSAY

Sat 9th Jan……No Morning Mass                    



9th & 10th January 2021

The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

Saturday Vigil Masses.. 4pm  &  6pm  CRAIGSTON

Sunday Masses……9.30am   NORTHBAY

                                      11.30am  CASTLEBAY