Takehomenews Sunday 16 May 2021
Fr Colin writes:
We are currently in that period of prayer between Ascension Day and Pentecost when Mary and the Apostles were preparing for the coming of the Holy Spirit. This coincides with a global prayer movement called Thy Kingdom Come that incites Christians around the world to pray from Ascension to Pentecost for more people to come to know Jesus. Thy Kingdom Come offers us the opportunity to pray alongside our brothers and sisters from other Christian denominations for people to come closer to Christ. We can do this by using the prayers of our own tradition, by going to Mass and by exploring other Catholic forms of prayer. During the coming week, we will continue to use the Prayer of the Holy Spirit, printed at the end of this newsletter.
In addition to this, we continue the global prayer marathon in the month of May, praying for the end of the pandemic. It is suggested that we say the Rosary each day for this intention either individually or perhaps joining by livestream the Rosary from one of the Marian shrines around the world. Remember we have a nice haven to say the Rosary in our Lady’s grotto, outside the Canon Smyth Parish Centre.
You will notice that the fencing around the grotto has been replaced by new railings. Some of the benches are old and falling apart. We would like to replace them with new shorter benches, perhaps dedicated in memory of past parishioners.
Have a good and prayerful week. Fr Colin.
World Communications Day
The theme for this year’s World Communications Day, which is today, echoes the words of the Apostle Philip, recognising that authentic communications leads to “encountering people as and where they are. The theme is ‘Come and see’ (John1:46). Pope Francis says that the invitation to come and see, which was part of those first moving encounters of Jesus with the disciples, is also the method for all authentic human communications. It is necessary to move beyond the complacent attitude that ‘we already know’ certain things. Instead, we need to go and see them for ourselves, to spend time with people, to listen to their stories and to confront reality, which always in some way surprises us. There will be a second collection today for the Catholic Communications Network
There will be a session for parents who wish to have their baby baptised on Sunday 6th June at 4.pm in the church.
7th Sunday of Easter (B)
It is interesting of the 3 Major Solemnities in the Church’s year, Christmas and Easter each have an octave but Pentecost dosen't. For the week after Christmas and for the week after Easter, each day we celebrate again as if it were the feast day itself. However, on the day after Pentecost we return to Ordinary Time. Instead, at Pentecost we focus more on the days leading up to the feast rather than on the days afterwards. We are now in that period of 9 days between the feast of Ascension and Pentecost when we prepare ourselves for the coming of the Holy Spirit. It is a time of prayerful preparation just as Mary and the Apostles spent time in prayer awaiting for the coming of the Holy Spirit. We will never know how much the Holy Spirit has interceded in our lives to guide us, strengthen us, protect us and care for us. Each minute of the day the Holy Spirit is at work for the benefit of God’s people. The Holy Spirit is the Paraclete. Paraclete is a Greek word which means literally ‘he who is called to one’s side’.
We can see the Holy Spirit at work in today’s 1st reading. The apostles need to appoint a new apostle to replace Judas Iscariot to bring their number back to 12, the same number as the different tribes of Israel. In their decision-making, they prayed and called on the Holy Spirit in making their decision, Matthias was the one they chose. His feast day was celebrated last Friday. Matthias fulfilled the criteria of having been with the apostles from the time of John the Baptist and also a witness to the resurrection.
If we were to sum up in one word what the Holy Spirit is, we would simply say LOVE. The Holy Spirit is God’s love. Much of the first letter of St John is about love. In today’s extract, there is an indication that love is catching. The Holy Spirit gives us love and we pass that love on to others. Love is something that dwells in us. If we acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God, God will live in us and we in God. The theme of God dwelling in us is broadened in today’s Gospel where Jesus on the night before he died prayed to the Father for us. It is God’s Word that dwells in us. In allowing God’s word to dwell within us, we are being consecrated in truth. It is good to think of ourselves going about our daily tasks, mundane or otherwise, guided by the indwelling God, the love of the Holy Spirit.
Vigil of St Rita
On Friday 21st May, the Vigil of St Rita, please pray and fast for the end of abortion and euthanasia in this Country. On this month's Day of Prayer and Fasting for Life, we are especially asking you to fast and pray for the end of DIY abortions at home. Please join in and invite others to join as well. https://www.facebook.com/events/886441852198421/
First Communion programme
The children in group B have their second session today (Sunday) at 9.15 in the Canon Smyth Parish Centre. The children in group A have their third session next Sunday (23rd May).
The Confirmation programme is now underway with candidates having their sessions on Wednesday evenings at 7pm by Zoom.
Parish Council Meeting
The Parish Council will meet in person on Thursday at 7.45pm in the Canon Smyth Parish Centre.
We are now able to gift aid our donations or Mass intentions by filling in an envelope, signing and marking at the back of the envelope. Thank you.
My current passport has expired so I am unable to countersign passport applications for the time being:
Friends of Silkstream
We are scheduling a litter pick up on the 29th May in Watling Park at 10.30am, please come along if you would like to help.
Novena of the Holy Spirit
Last Friday, we started the Novena of the Holy Spirit to prepare us for Pentecost on 23rd May.
Holy Spirit come into our lives.
Open our ears: To hear what you are saying to us
In the things that happen to us
In the people we meet
Open our eyes: To see the needs of the people round us.
Open our hands: To do our work well, to help when help is needed.
Open our lips: To tell others the Good News of Jesus
To bring comfort, happiness and laughter to other people.
Open our minds: To discover new truth about You and the world
Open our hearts: To love you and our fellow men and women
As you have loved us in Jesus.
To you with our Father and the Son, one God, all honour and praise shall be given now and forever. Amen.