Message From The Parish Priest
Sunday 30th September 2007
TWENTY SIXTH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR IN ORDINARY TIME + CYCLE C READINGS.
MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST.
My Dear People,
Today we have the Gospel of Dives and Lazarus. One was a beggar and a sick man and the other was a rich man who fed himself wonderfully everyday. One went to Heaven and one went to Hell. But that is not the end of it. It is a story. It is one of those vivid stories which has come down to us through the Living Word of God and it basically is about how we conduct ourselves in this world so that we may avoid the fate of Dives - the rich man.
The picture our Lord paints is a little complex. Is our Lord saying that Lazarus because he was poor and covered in sores went to Heaven and the rich man because he fed well and dressed well went to Hell? It would appear that way wouldn't it? However we would be mistaken.
Our Lord did say that it was difficult for a rich man to enter Heaven but that all things are possible with God. It happened to be that the way of life of the rich man was such that he was not a friend of God or a friend of the poor. Dives did not even notice the poor man who could have had the scraps left over from his sumptuous table but he was not given them. In fact the poor man was so helpless that he could not even stop the dogs licking his sores and yet the man was a friend of God and got to Heaven.
In our Lord's day those who lives like Dives perhaps were in such a tiny minority that they were haughty and arrogant and despised the poor people. However the boot is on the other foot when Dives sees Lazarus in Heaven and finds himself in Hades (Hell). He pleads for mercy but it is too late. Our Lord refers to the GREAT GULF so that Heaven is not accessible from that place. Once you have made your life decision not live by God then the fate is set and there is no going back once you leave this world to revise things.
The appeal to God to send a warning to the rich man's brothers to stop living as they do and so avoid their brother's terrible fate falls on deaf ears. Our Lord says that they have the teaching of the holy men and women - let them listen whilst they are alive on earth. "Even if one should come back from the dead they will not listen" - a reference to our Lord's own passion and Resurrection.
The lesson for us that we must love God so that we will have a true Christian spirit of love for one's neighbour within us. There is no doubt that in our parish we do have this virtue for the care you have for one another and the generosity you show when the occasion arises like the great floods. Your generosity to the Needy is great because you love Jesus Christ. Loving him you will show love for the ones in need.
CAFOD FAMILY FAST is next Friday. Please take an envelope and return it soon so that the CATHOLIC FUND FOR OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT will be enabled by you to reach out the poor man at this rich world's gate. Give up some item on Friday 6th October and give it to Cafod.
God Bless you,
Father Tom Connolly
RETREAT I am on retreat with 25 other priests of our diocese and our Bishop at Ampleforth Abbey - North Yorkshire Mon - Fri and I will remember you all in my prayers and Masses. TC.
Thanks to Father Toner of the SMA Fathers for supplying in St Edwards.
MARRIAGE Every Blessing on Mark Pacey and Anna Nagle who were married in the Lord at St Kentigern's last Saturday.
SALFORD CATHEDRAL 40th ANNIVERSERY OF THE PASSING OF ABORTION ACT AND 6.7 MILLION ABORTIONS OF ENGLISH AND WELSH CHILDREN LATER - TIME FOR CHANGE. A SERVICE OF HEALING, HOPE AND REMEMBRANCE ON SATURDAY 27th OCTOBER AT 10AM 250 CHAPEL STREET SALFORD. This is an ecumenical event. www.timeforchange.org.uk
APF FATHER JAN CLAVER (Mill Hill) WILL BE APPEALING TODAY FOR NEW PEOPLE TO RECEIVE A MISSION BOX INTO THEIR HOMES AND FOR OTHER VOLUNTEERS TO COLLECT THEM 4 TIMES A YEAR FOR THE WORK OF SPREADING THE CATHOLIC FAITH THROUGH THE WORLD. I HOPE HE HAS A GENEROUS RESPONSE AS SOME WHO HAVE COLLECTED FOR YEARS ARE NOW IN THEIR LATE 80S AND DESERVE A REST.
St Kents Only The Turn out of prospective parents at the new Catholic school of Loreto High, Chorlton was tremendous. I was there with Father Flynn and the crowds were such that we had to Q up to gain entry. I hope that this shows that many parents will choose this Catholic school as a place of education at 11+. Those with special needs will particularly find the new school a help because for the first few years the classes are small and the teaching intense and personal for each child.
Bidding prayers for 26th Sunday of the Year cycle c 07.
Priest: The Lord is merciful and just and therefore we come before the throne of mercy confidant that God will hear our plea.
Reader: For all those whose wealth blinds them to the needs of others that they may have within them the grace of God to see the Lazarus at the gate and reach out in brotherly love. Lord hear us.
For we in the first world who live so well when so many of the worlds people live so poorly - that our help with Family Fast Day this Friday may express our solidarity with the needy. Lord hear us.
For all married people that with in their families they may nurture a sense of justice and goodness and kindness in the young. Lord hear us.
For all the students who have begun a new term and especially those who have just begun University and are away from home - that they may be happy and work well in their new surroundings and find our parish a place of welcome. Lord hear us.
For vocations to the Priesthood and the consecrated life - that the Lord may grant us zealous and holy priests to extend the Kingdom on earth and to sustain God's People. Lord hear us.
For all our dear sick and for those who have the care of them that the power of the Risen Christ may comfort them in their weakness: Cath Mahoney, Peggy Walsh, Jean Corrigan, Bernard Murray, Christine Keary. Lord hear us.
May the light of Christ shine on those who have died recently in our community and we pray for: Mary O'Brien, Brian Noble, Nellie McCleary.
For those whose anniversaries fall about this time: John Morris (Junior) Mary Fagan, Patrick Garrett, Anna Downey, Eileen Kennedy, Austin Brady, Ciss Connolly, Gladys Jones, Margaret Howard and John Hopkins
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.
Mary is "The House Of God" and the "Tower of Ivory" and yet the humblest of all creatures and the holiest - may she teach us to love as Christ wants us to love - Hail Mary...
Priest: Concluding Prayer: Almighty and ever living God listen to our ardent and heartfelt prayers which we make in trustful faith through Christ our Lord. Amen.