Message From The Parish Priest
Sunday 10th June 2007
CORPUS CHRISTI / BODY AND BLOOD OF THE LORD SOLEMNITY
My Dear People,
Today we must get used to the fact that the feast will not be celebrated on the Thursday anymore. Corpus Christi. was celebrated on the Thursday because (as is still the case, and the Divine Office reflects this ) - Thursday is the day of the Blessed Sacrament for it was on the evening of Holy Thursday that the Mass was born in the Upper Room. Every Thursday in the Divine Office which priests are obliged to pray every day (5 times a day) the Office has a Theme touching always on the remembrance of that great gift of Jesus in the Holy Sacrament of the Altar.
Many have asked why the Bishops have changed the Holy days of Obligation. The answer is that we do not know except that they judged it was increasingly difficult for folk to get to Mass on a Holiday or to remember that it was a Holyday. We are left with SS Peter and Paul and Christmas Day.
My dear people, how lonely life would be without Jesus our Lord being present in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar. Imagine a Church with no Tabernacle? Imagine not believing that the bread and wine at Mass is changed by the miracle of Transubstantiation, through the Ministry of the ordained priest, into Our Lord's Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity? Life would be so lonesome and so lacking.
The late Pope taught us all about the Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist in a sublime way as you would expect from the Successor of St Peter. I want to repeat one of his teachings concerning this great Feast of Corpus Christi.
He says that first of all the Blessed Sacrament is a PRESENCE SACRAMENT. In this we have the gift of the Lord's bodily risen and abiding presence until he comes again in Glory to judge the living and the dead. Jesus promised that he would be with us always until the end of time and in this way supremely he becomes present to us so that we can actually feel his presence in the Tabernacle and on the Altar after the Consecration. Being present to us is a great gift and Jesus makes himself vulnerable to man's indifference or lack of respect. However - that is how our Lord wants it. He will put up with these things in order to be truly present always.
The Holy Sacrament is secondly a SACRIFICE SACRAMENT. It is the means by which the Redemptive power of the cross is made present in our time and space. The Sacrifice of the Mass is the same one as the Sacrifice on Calvary made present through the power of the Holy Spirit and the words of Institution spoken by the priest. Our Lord's sacrifice on the Cross was/is an Eternal Sacrifice - valid for all time and men's sins are forgiven in our time and space through the merits of this One Sacrifice given Once and For All. You cannot see what the angels and saints can see when the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is offered. Calvary is made present in our time. Our sins were nailed to the Cross. He is the Sacrifice which takes our sins away.
Lastly the Blessed Sacrament is a COMMUNION SACRAMENT. It is the means by which we communicate with the Risen Lord by receiving His Sacred Body in the Sacred Species. Jesus is received by us when we come to Holy Communion but He also receives us doesn't He? There is no communion on earth so close and life giving as the Holy Sacrament of the Lord's Body and Blood. Our Lord told us "Unless you eat my body and drink my Blood you cannot have life in you." The disciples for the first time split over this teaching, and some refused to follow him after that. He is our spiritual food and without this food we cannot have life - his life so it truly is a Communion Sacrament.
May this feast be a cause of joy. May be one day we will be able to have a Blessed Sacrament Procession again in our streets. May we all learn to love Christ in the Holy Sacrament more and more until we see him face to face at the end of our life's pilgrimage.
Father Tom Connolly
Watching before the Blessed Sacrament exposed is a great custom we have at St Kentgerns each day from 2- 4 and at St Edwards on Saturday at 11.30am. Please try to keep a tryst with the Lord and commit yourselves to doing a half hour slot on the same day each week.
TEACHING ASSISTANT (TA 2) term time only is required for St Ambrose's RC Primary on Princess Parkway. R.C. preferred. Apply to the school - closing date 20 June. 07 tel 445 3299.
PAPAL NUNCIO Mass with the diocese at the Cathedral takes place on Friday 22 June at 7.00pm. I have four tickets for layfolk and I was wondering if some of the under 30 members of the parish might like to go. See me or Fr Flynn.
THE SERVICE FOR YOUNG PEOPLE AND FAMILIES with the Nuncio will take place in St John's, Ivy St, Burnley at 2.30pm on Saturday 23rd June. Any young people and families with young children wanting to attend-please do and you can borrow the Bus if you need it.
AN EVENING OF ENTERTAINMENT WITH JIMMY CRICKET AND FRIENDS TO TAKE PLACE AT THE IRISH WORLD HERITAGE CENTRE, CHEETHAM HILL ON FRIDAY 29TH JUNE AT 7.30PM £7 AT THE DOOR IN AID OF SENDING FAMILIES WITH DISABLED YOUNG ONES TO Lourdes with the Bishop this July.
RESCUE SOCIETY GARDEN PARTY this Sat coming at 1pm. 390 Parrswood Rd, Didsbury. Do go and have a great time supporting the Children's Services of our Salford Diocese. I guarantee you will have a great time and I will meet you there. Fr Tom C.
RCIA Lessons in the Catholic Faith are every Sunday night for all who are interested, takes place in St Edward's Hall, Thurloe Street , after the 6.30pm Mass. Led by Father Flynn et al.
Priest: At the supper to which all are invited, Christ gives his Body and blood for the life of the world. Earnestly we beseech him, in his name we pray...
Reader: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the Living God, you have commanded us to celebrate the Holy Mass in remembrance of you- enrich your church through the worthy celebration of these holy mysteries. Lord, hear us.
Lord Jesus Christ, Eternal High Priest, you have committed to your priests the ministration of your sacraments - help our priests to to do their part in your work with unfailing gladness and genuine charity. Lord, hear us.
For every Christian community throughout the world today who celebrate the feast of Corpus Christi that the Eucharistic Sacrifice my unite us all as one with the Holy Father and with all the bishops of the church of God. Lord, hear us.
Lord Jesus Christ, Heavenly physician, you give an eternal remedy and a pledge of resurrection to those who eat your body- grant health to the ailing and real hope and we pray for- George Blessington, Stephen Hughes, Elizabeth Mallet, Kevin McNulty. Lord hear us...
Lord Jesus Christ - Bread of Heaven, we know that whenever we celebrate these mysteries we proclaim your life giving death until you come in glory - give to those who have died the vision of your Glory... Jack Grady,, Sadie Cully, Paul Greenan, Susan Quinn.
All those whose anniversaries fall about this time: Mary Kennedy,(6.30) Mary Phillips (9am) Peter and Mary Hughes, Jim Higgins (Vigil) Brendan Forkan (month's Mind) Tony Walsh, Margaret Boyle, Michael Boyle, Peter and Bridget Mimnagh, Kathleen Bowes and Mary Clark.
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God, rest in peace - Amen.
Mary is the Holy One who gave us the Lord Jesus to become our Food - she brought him forth in Bethlehem which means The House of Bread- we salute our mother - Hail Mary.
Priest: Lord Jesus, unseen guest at this banquet carry these prayers to the throne of grace and ion your mercy answer them this we ask of you who lives for ever and ever. Amen.