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Sermon for 22 August 2010



My Dear People,

There is a lovely passage in the Ritual Book for the Prayers for the Dying when the Priest prays:

"May Christ who was crucified for you, admit you into his garden of paradise. May Christ acknowledge you as one of his flock...and set you among those he has chosen. May you see your Redeemer, face to face and enjoy the vision of God forever." Elsewhere - "May Christ who has called you, take you to himself, may the angels lead you..."

How many times have I prayed these powerful prayers of Mother Church over dying souls? Too many to even contemplate.

Now, why am I writing about such things in the depths of August barmy weather and empty streets and holiday mode (except for the A Level candidates!!). Well the words of our Lord in the Gospel assigned to this Sunday are a bit scary don't you think? Our Lord, in answer to the question "Will many get to Heaven?" answers in a way which is not totally clear. He indicates that not as many as we imagine are going to make it. It is a narrow, not a broad door that you have to seek out. He said many try to the broad door and get shut out and the Master of the House does not let them in because he does not know them "as one of his flock". "Go away from me you wicked men. I do not know where you come from" the Master of the house says.

Now, the House in the parable is no doubt, the Communion of the Church which is the House of God. If you are really in it and "one of his flock" then the door will be opened and you will hear those words..."Well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord!".

Our Lord's words were addressed most directly as the contempories who were listening to him and who would be part of that crowd who would eventually be shouting "Crucify him". Our Lord could see this. He also could see us. We (the non Jews) were the great unwashed at that time - not belonging to the race of Abraham. Our Lord could sadly see his own people being outside the Kingdom of God. The good part was that he could see us - from the east and west, north and south actually entering the Kingdom to join Abraham and Isaac and Jacob etc.

Now that still applies to every generation. You don't get to heaven simply by saying "but I am a Catholic" - you have to believe and practise it to be on the safe side eh? Are you really on our Lord's team and one his loyal and devout followers - really belonging to him and your life only making sense in reference to his Church - his Body?

Well the answer to that only you can answer for yourself. Dante reserved one of the deepest places in The Inferno to the clergy!! So being a priest alone is not going to save you.

It is the "KNOWING" WHERE THE CLUE IS. Does the Master know YOU and you HIM?

Our Lady is our advocate and the Nine First Fridays Promises of the Sacred Heart are still valid and there is hope for the gravest sinner.

God Bless,

Father Tom Connolly

WEDDING CONGRATULATIONS TO Alex Hackman (St Kents) and Eileen Walsh (St Edwards) who are marrying in Malta this coming week. May God Bless them in the years ahead.

REQUIEM MASS in the open air in Southern and Moston at 11am on Bank Holiday Monday. Bring a chair and - if wet - umbrella. Your Holy Souls will appreciate it. Even if you do not have anyone buried there - pretend you have and pray for your own buried elsewhere.

PLANNED GIVING ENVELOPE SYSTEM WHERE I GET THE TAX BACK THAT YOU HAVE PAID ON YOUR COLLECTION IF YOU DECLARE YOU ARE A TAXPAYER BROUGHT IN 5370 FOR THE YEAR. NOW - THAT IS GREAT IS IT NOT? If you pay tax and give to the church - do it my standing order or Special Envelope and - hey presto - Mr Osborne gives us the tax money back.

PAPAL MASS if you are going I have paid your coach and Pilgrim Pack @ 25. Can you pay the parish Back - make a cheque to St Kentigern's Parish a/c. 10 if London.

Bidding Prayers

21st Sunday C Bidding Prayers

Priest: In the Father's Kingdom, the last shall be first - we turn to God with total confidence in his loving mercy.

Reader: May God's People always discern that surer path and narrower door which is Christ's Way of bringing us to the joy of faith and eternal happiness. Lord hear us.

For our culture that it may be more open to the life giving Spirit and not be locked into the negative and the culture of death. We pray for those seeking jobs. We pray for artists and writers and designers and engineers and architects, and all who make the created world a more beautiful place. Lord hear us.

For the cause of Life and a new spirit of revulsion for the killing of the unborn in our country. Lord hear us.

We commend to God our Holy Father that his visit to our nation will consolation and joy to God's People and that his witness to our State may be a profound one. Lord hear us.

For all our sick that God may strengthen and comfort them in their weakness and that they find hope in their suffering: Jean Corrigan. Lorenzina Rizzo, Nathan Mitchell, Maureen Smith, Kevin Cullen, Joanne Cullen, Martin Hoysted, Mary Colbert, Tommy Mimnagh, Lord hear us.

We pray for all those who have died recently: John Lydon, Dr Bobby Kenny, Frank Bradwell, Father Michael Ryan, James White, Aupara Vytiaou, Eddie Crow and all those souls whose anniversaries fall about now: Mary Geraghty (Monday 9.30) Michael McDonagh, Tom Brady, Margaret Gimes, John Smith (9.00pm) Elizabeth Peers, Bridie Greally (6.30 Sunday evening) Robert Burke, Nora and Henry Atkinson May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen

Mary was raised up in her humility and exalted above the stars and the angels - may we see in our mother a model of what we want to be: O Mary conceived without sin. Pray for us who have recourse to thee. Hail Mary, full of grace.

Priest: Lord and Eternal Father of our Lord Jesus Christ , in your great mercy - listen to our heartfelt prayers which we make through Christ our Lord.