18 October 2020
Fr Colin Writes:
To make it easier for the Track and Trace System, if you were present at the same Mass the previous week, your name can simply be ticked off when you enter the church rather than writing down the details again. I remind you that if you have a Smart phone you can simply scan the QR code on the notice board facing you when you enter the church. Giving your details remains optional.
November, the month of the Holy Souls, is approaching. In previous years, names were written in the Memorial Book but this year with Covid precautions we cannot allow several people to touch the book. So, I will write the names of those who have had funerals from last year and the book will be placed in front of the altar during November it contains the names you have inscribed in previous years. There will also be a box in front of the altar into which we will put the names you wish to be remembered. Please write the names on a piece of paper and put in an envelope which you can put through the presbytery letter box. There are envelopes for this on the table at the back of the church. There will be Masses celebrated for these Holy Souls during November but the main Masses will be on All Souls Day, Monday 2nd November, when there will be Mass at 7.0AM and 7.30PM. There will be no Bereavement Mass this year.
Clocks Going Back
Summer Time ends next Saturday night. Please put your clocks and watches back one hour.
World Mission Sunday
All parishes throughout the world celebrate World Mission Sunday because it is vital to the growth of the Church and the spread of the Gospel in predominantly impoverished and remote areas overseas.
The funds raised build much-needed infrastructure, from chapels and schools to orphanages, clinics and dispensaries. Requested by local community, the support from Missio transforms lives and creates a hub from which the young Church can flourish and grow: spreading the Good News of the Gospel, ministering to the faithful, and delivering essential services in health and education. Today’s second collection will help in these many ways.
The total number of people at Mass last weekend was 280, giving an average of 273 over the 4 weeks. This compares with 639 for the equivalent 4 weeks in 2019.
Finance Committee Meeting
The Finance Committee will meet on Thursday at 7.30PM in the church.
29th Sunday of Year A
The Pharisees objected to Jesus because they were strict law-abiders, rejecting anyone who did not keep the law to the letter. They failed to see its overall purpose and therefore opposed Jesus in many of the things he said and did. Many of the occasions when they objected to Jesus were over the question of the keeping of the sabbath. In today’s Gospel it is over the question of taxes. The Pharisees went out of their way to trick Jesus. But Jesus always had an answer. Here, Jesus rather cleverly asks them to produce a coin and askes them to say whose head was inscribed on it. It was that of Caesar. So Jesus’ answer was to give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God. The rules of the state can live alongside the laws of God but God is supreme. You can debate what might belong to Caesar, but ultimately everything belongs to God.
Once we accept that everything belongs to God, we are ready to take on the role of being stewards of God’s creation. That means that we care for the earth, all that God has created, people and the environment. All these rules and regulations and guidelines that we are subject to during this pandemic are part of making sure that we are safe, however unfair, inconvenient or mistimed we might argue they may be. God has given us the earth and we must care for it, make sure that it is in good shape for future generations and that our fellow earth-dwellers are cared for.
In today’s 2nd reading St Paul compliments the people of Thessalonica for their faith which they have put into action. He mentions the love that they have shown and their perseverance through hope. Our present times provide us with new ways in which we can show that love and persevere in hope. Our prayers too may well have been intensified over the last few months. Some people are worried that they might get ill. Others are anxious for their family and friends. We continue to pray for them that they may find peace. And we mustn’t forget that others are praying for us,
Today is World Mission Sunday when we pray for the spread of the Word throughout the world and for the well-being of all in the missionary lands. We know that charities have been badly affected by the pandemic. Today is an opportunity to put that right by our prayers and support, for missions throughout the world. It is all part of being one united body created by God, loved by him and invited to love one another.
Finally, a word about Cyrus to whom the prophecy of Isaiah in the first reading is addressed. Cyrus has no knowledge or interest in the God of Israel and yet it is God who has enabled him to come to power. Cyrus will be the instrument that enables exiles to return home and rebuild Jerusalem and its Temple and re-establish its identity as God’s people. This serves as a reminder to us that God has the power to move non-believers to act in a way to aid God’s people. Each of us has a role to play in God’s divine plan.
According to Thy Word
‘According to Thy Word’ is the autumn 6 - week reflection booklet, now available in the porch. Not surprisingly it centres on Mary, in particular to the words that she said to the Archangel Gabriel at the Annunciation. The booklet can be used individually or you may wish to reflect together with other members of your family. It is appropriate to use it in these weeks leading up to Advent, but can be used at any time.
If you wish to book a Mass intention, please contact the Parish Office (see front page for opening times). At the Weekend, please come to the sacristy.
Signing Secondary School Forms
I have left signed copies of the Certificate of Catholic Practice on the table at the back of the church. Please take one and enter the name of the child, address and date of birth. Please do not take one for somebody else. They must come to Mass to collect it. I am adopting this system this year because the parish centre is no longer open for me to have a signing session.
To commemorate 40 years of their charitable work and the homeless people they have supported during this time, The Passage will be launching a very special cookbook, A Taste of Home with a Foreword from HRH The Duke of Cambridge, and exclusive recipes from over 100 household names including: Nigella Lawson, Sir Paul McCartney, Stephen Fry, Yotam Ottolenghi, Diana Henry and many more. The book will also include stories and recipes from people who have been helped by the charity’s services over the years, shining a light on the challenges that they have been able to overcome with the right guidance, opportunities and resources.
A Taste of Home is priced at £25 and can be pre-ordered at Waterstones, or purchased online and from other book stores from 15 October, to coincide with The Passage’s anniversary month. All profits will go directly towards supporting people who are street homeless and in housing crisis during a particularly testing financial time for so many.
Visit www.passage.org.uk/tasteofhome for more information
Saints of the week
Sunday 18th October St. Luke, Evangelist & Gospel Writer, Patron Saint of artists, physicians, and surgeons.
Thursday 22nd October St. John Paul II (the Great), Pope Patron Saint of World Youth Day.