As we approach the end of the Church’s Year, we turn our minds towards the resurrection as we look forward to the things to come. In the Gospel, Jesus talks to the Sadducees about the resurrection of the dead. The Sadducees did not believe in the resurrection but Jesus himself was to rise from the dead. He invites us to prepare for everlasting life by conducting good lives.
Sick and Retired Priests Fund
Today’s second collection is for the Sick & Retired Priests’ Fund. Please give generously and help ensure our sick and older priests are financially supported, having given us a lifetime of dedicated service. They have baptised us, welcomed us into the church, and offered comfort and prayer at times of sorrow. Now we have a chance to give back and ensure they have peace of mind during their senior years. The fund is used to cover their essential needs at a time when they may be facing failing health and declining mobility. Your gift could help ensu...
Today we are presented with the story of Zacchaeus, the wealthy tax collector, who climbed a tree to get a view of Jesus and ended up being a follower of his. Coming into the presence of Jesus made all the difference to his life. We can’t be just a spectator as far as Jesus is concerned. He enfolds us and converts us and we want to do his will, Zacchaeus paid back those he had cheated. Our kindness can pay back any wrong we have done and it is Jesus inside us who makes this happen.
Thank you to everyone who has brought along black bags filled with clothes to help the Mary’s Meals Charity. The van will collect the clothes soon after 12Noon today so please do not bring any after this Mass time. Our contributions help to feed young schoolchildren in countries where food is scarce. This charity has made a major difference to many young lives.
Sick and Retired Priests Fund
Next week our parish will take up a second collect...
The Sunday Gospels in recent weeks have presented us with parables relating to prayer. Today’s Gospel concerns the need to repent of our sins. The Pharisee’s prayer is one of claiming how good he is and how much better than the tax collector, who beats his breast and asks for God’s mercy. The lesson for us from this parable is to regularly ask God for his mercy, to be aware of our sinfulness and to go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation. The parable also tells us not to compare ourselves favourably with others, but to pray for all of us sinners.
All Saints Day
On Friday we celebrate the Feast of All Saints. On this day, we praise and thank the Lord for bringing into his company those souls who have remained faithful to him and now share eternal glory. This includes those we have known, relations and friends who have completed their journey to heaven as well as the saints recognised as such by the church. This feast is an encouragement to us...
The readings today encourage us to persevere in our prayer. The parable of the widow who kept on pestering the unjust judge for justice and was eventually answered is an example of how the Lord answers our prayers, even if they are not answered immediately or in the way we would expect. No prayer goes unanswered. Moses’ persistence in holding up his arms to maintain advantage for his army indicates that perseverance may be tiring and painful but it bears fruit in the end.
World Mission Sunday
Today we will be having a second collection to support World Missions. World Mission Sunday supports missionaries who work alongside communities that are poor or in need, regardless of their background or belief. By supporting Missio, the Pope’s charity for world mission, you will help missionaries like Sr Clara share the love of Christ with those most in need. Please pray for the mission of the Church throughout the world and give what you can...
Today’s Gospel about the ten lepers who were cured by Jesus alerts us to the constant need to give thanks to the Lord. Only one of the ten lepers come to thank Jesus and he was a foreigner. Thanking and praising God is a sign of our faith. So many blessings we receive in everyday life we take for granted. The Mass is the greatest act of thanksgiving but we need to find time each day to thank God for all the little things that happen in our life for our benefit.
Canonization of Blessed John Henry Newman
Today in Rome Blessed John Henry Newman is being canonized a saint by Pope Francis. Cardinal Newman, born in London in 1801 became an Anglican clergyman but converted to become a Catholic. He set up an Oratory in Birmingham and wrote many books and articles about the faith. He showed great care for the poor, so much so that when he died in 1890, thousands of people lined the streets of Birmingham to say farewell and pray for this holy man. Westmi...
Jesus taught us a grand example of service when he washed his disciples feet at the Last Supper. He had told them earlier that he had not come to be served but to serve. The Pope has the title of ‘The Servant of the servants of God’. Those in authority are there to serve the people, not to step outside and be expected that others will serve them. Each of us has a role in service. Our duty is our service. At the end of the day we should be able to repeat what Jesus recommended: ‘We are merely servants: we have done no more than our duty.’
CAFOD Harvest Fast Day
CAFOD tells of a 14-year old called Fabiano who had to walk 3 miles early in the morning to collect water for his family. Not only was it a long walk but on one occasion he was attacked and ran home without the water. Thanks to Family Fast Day donations, a solar powered water pump has been installed in his village. Today, it takes Fabiano just 4 minutes to collect water....
If there is one parable that alerts us to the need of caring for the poor, it is today’s one about the rich man feasting magnificently and the poor man starving on his doorstep. What makes the parable so dramatic is the vision of the rich man in hell trying to get a message to his five brothers to change their ways. Jesus uses the parable to point out to the Pharisees the need to listen to the prophets. If they don’t, they would not be convinced if someone were to rise from the dead. Jesus is making a connection between what the Pharisees know through the Law and the Prophets and what Jesus would achieve through his Resurrection.
Let them eat cake!
After Masses this morning, you are invited to enjoy a cup of tea/coffee and a slice of cake and other treats outside the church after Mass, or inside the Parish Centre if the weather is bad. All proceeds will go to Macmillan Cancer Support.
The parable of the dishonest steward may seem somewhat confusing when the steward was praised for his astuteness. How can it be right to reduce the debts of his master’s debtors? We live in a world where money is at the centre of everything. Even the Church spends time and energy raising funds for various projects. However Jesus is teaching us through this parable that such values as integrity, compassion and trust have greater weight. We can ask ourselves what we trust, who do we trust and what can we be trusted with.
Today there will be a second collection for SURVIVE-MIVA, an organisation which provides vehicles for healthcare and pastoral care in remote communities in impoverished parts of the world. Types of vehicles include four—wheelers, motorbikes, mopeds, boats and bicycles. Countries served include India, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Ruanda, Tanzania, Malawi and New Guinea. Survive-Miva receive an average of 400 requests every y...
Today we reflect on the need for us to repent of our sins and the power of God to forgive us. We can see how much God wants us to turn back to him in the parable of the hundred sheep of which one was lost. We can see God’s purpose in sending his Son into the world when St Paul in his letter to Timothy emphasises that Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners. We can see how deep God’s love is for the sinner who repents in the way the Father welcomes back his wayward son in the Parable of the Prodigal Son.
Home Mission Day
‘Rejoice with me!’ Isn’t it great that these are the words we are met with in Church today? To rejoice not because of some material gain but because someone has returned home to us, their family in Christ, just as the prodigal son returns to his father in the Gospel. Today is Home Mission Sunday so we are encouraged to think about our mission to people in need of Christ. The Home Mission Office exists to help us share the joy of meeting...
Today’s Gospel indicates that to be a true follower of Christ means putting everything else in the background in order to concentrate on fulfilling God’s will. Jesus is calling on undivided loyalty even above family loyalties. He is calling on his people to give up their possessions. In other words, Jesus wants us to forget about all the things we have and value our own faith, our possession of the Lord inside us. Today’s first reading helps us to see God as Wisdom personified. What may not appear wise in human terms may be wise in godly terms. Following Jesus and keeping his Word is indeed wise even if the world does not see it that way.
As schools, colleges and universities start their new academic year, we celebrate today Education Sunday. We pray for pupils, students, teachers and lecturers and all involved in education. The theme this year is ‘Form and Flourish’. It is an opportunity to showcase and strengthen...