Takehomenews Sunday 30th May
Fr Colin writes:
We have received notification from the Bishops Conference about the easing of some of the restrictions we have got used to:-
· From 1st June we will re-introduce the offertory Procession at all Masses but participants must sanitise their hands before bringing up the gifts.
· The Bidding Prayers (Prayers of the Faithful) will resume at Sunday Masses, starting next Sunday.
· The priest in now allowed to say ‘The Body of Christ’ and you reply ‘Amen’ when receiving Holy Communion rather than doing it generally beforehand.
· It is now possible to reduce social distancing from 2 metres to 1 metre. In the longer benches, we could fit in more people.
Other things will stay as they are for the time being. We should still sanitise our hands on entering and leaving the church. Face masks should be worn. Holy water stoups remain out of use. Congregational singing is still prohibited. The Sign of Peace remains suspended. Holy Communion remains under one kind only.
For confessions, the confessional still remains out of use because it is impossible to have the required ventilation. We will continue to use the alcove at the right end of the church for confessions.
Baptisms and weddings can now take place with up to 30 people present and at funerals we can now have as many people as can fit into the church socially distanced.
There may be some more easing of restrictions after 21st June. Thank you for your patience and co-operation over all these arrangements.
There will be a session for parents who wish to have their baby baptised next Sunday 6th June at 4pm in the church.
First Communion programme
The children in Group B have their next session next Sunday at 9.15 in the Canon Smyth Parish Centre
Candidates for confirmation continue to have their sessions on Wednesday evenings at 7pm by Zoom, even during half-term. Bishop Sherrington will be here on Sunday 13th June at 3pm and Saturday 19th June at 3pm to administer the Sacrament of Confirmation.
This Sunday we celebrate The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. The unity of God the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. “Three persons in one God, not a solitude but a perfect communion.” (Pope Benedict XVI 22 May 2005). Throughout the history of salvation, man has tried to study and understand the mystery of God’s inmost life held within the Blessed Trinity and we call this study - Theology – the study of God. The revelations, communications and works by which God reveals who he is in himself is called the “economy” of the Blessed Trinity. It is through this economia that the theology is gradually revealed to us.
When you meet someone for the first time you form an opinion of them. But it is only really over time and over many interactions that you really begin to form a real understanding of who that person is through how they reveal themselves. This is the same for us with the revelations of God, with each encounter God reveals something of his nature and we are slowly able to build-up a picture or are given an understanding of who God is and this is the mystery that awaits each of us in faith.
When we are baptised we are not baptised in the name of IAM, Jesus, and Spirit – no. We are baptised in the name of God, The Father, and the Son and Holy Spirit. For there is only one God, the almighty Father, and his only Son, and the Holy Spirit: who in communion are the Most Holy Trinity.
When preparing for an online class with the Junior school earlier in the year I found a BBC education video that described the Trinitarian relationship to being like an egg. There is the shell, the yoke and the egg white – each part with it’s own function and name, but existing together as one egg.
To explain the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity in language is always going to fall short because we are not able to fully comprehend the entire mystery of God. That is why the study of scripture is important as this is part of the method of the economy of revelation, as reason alone cannot fully assess the mystery of the inmost Being of God in the Holy Trinity.
For the people of Israel, God was the Father of creation (Deut 32:6). At the point of the Exodus, God calls Israel “his first born Son” (Exodus 4:22). He is called “the Father of the poor” (2 Samuel7:14). These lovely images of a Father are of course limited by our experiences of human parenting which is limited by its human capacity. God is more than these images of parenthood. God is revealed by the Son. Jesus is the eternal Son of God, who was present before the creation of the world (John 1:1). Jesus reveals the timeless love of God who is the Creator and merciful Father. Jesus as the Son of God is God as his only begotten Son. God is the eternal Wisdom that inspires throughout the ages the writings of Sacred Scripture and the prayers of the faithful and provides us with an advocate - a means of God’s mercy that is revealed through God the Holy Spirit. God is seen in the birth of everyday life of the earth, in nature and human renewal from generation to generation. God is there in the space of heaven, the planets and the Sun. God is also there in the smallest of cells and molecular activity, each interconnected and dependent upon the other. The Holy Trinity is everywhere and in everything, existing in love – in communion with each other. Pope Benedict XVI sums this all up: ‘The name of the Blessed Trinity is, in a certain sense, imprinted upon all things because all that exists, down to the last particle, is in relation; in this way we catch a glimpse of God as relationship and ultimately [as] Creator Love’.
Copies of the Cardinal’s Pastoral Letter read on Pentecost Sunday relating to God’s Creation and our need to care for it can be found on the table at the back of the church.
Re—Commissioning of Eucharistic Ministers
Although we are still unable to receive Communion under both kinds and Eucharistic Ministers do not assist with the distribution at Masses, I am suggesting that Eucharistic Ministers be re-commissioned nest Sunday, the Feast of Corpus Christi at whichever Mass they attend, including Saturday evening. You will find a green sheet on the table at the back of the church. The re-commissioning will take place after the homily. Please stand in your place wherever you are, for the re-commissioning.
We have decided to go ahead with this in the hope that in the future Eucharistic Ministers will have a role to perform at Masses. Eucharistic Ministers can take the Blessed Sacrament to the housebound but need to have an up to date DBS check unless they are going to a member of their own family, in the same household. For a DBS check please contact our Parish Safeguarding Representative Macdara Conneely by email on email@example.com who will guide you on what needs to be done. Thank you.
Saints Days this week
Monday—The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary Today’s feast is about both two women and two men. The Blessed Virgin Mary goes to visit Elizabeth to assist her in her final days of pregnancy. But as she greets Elizabeth, the babe in Elizabeth’s womb—John the Baptist—leaps for joy at the presence of Jesus in Mary’s womb.
Tuesday– St Justin Saint Justin Martyr was the first recognized philosopher of the Christian era. Converted to Christianity, he continued his love of philosophy and used it to defend the faith.
Thursday St Charles Lwanga and Companions (Ugandan Martyrs) Today we celebrate the 22 martyrs of Uganda, Saints Charles Lwanga and Companions. Their stories are set in the court of a chief who did not share their faith. Even though they were pages in his court, their faith meant more to them than his approval and support
Saturday—St Boniface Saint Boniface was an English Benedictine monk who made it his life’s mission to convert the Germanic tribes to Christianity. He found it was no easy task and ended up giving his life for the cause. Boniface was martyred on June 5, 754.