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Sermon for 3 July 2011

FOURTEENTH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR IN ORDINARY TIME.+ CYCLE A. + . 3RD JULY 2011. Month of the Sacred Heart. Peter's Pence Sunday.


My Dear People,

It is very providential that the Gospel of today's Mass has the humility of our Saviour as its object.

God stooped to us and heard our cry the Psalmist says. Think of the humility of Christ our Lord. He set aside his infinite glory as God in order to embrace the human condition - our human condition and my humanity. Think of the love the Father has lavished on us St John says – by letting us be called "God’s children - for that is what we are." How did we come to be his children? Well our Lord through his Passion and Resurrection grafted us into his Holy Body and made us one with him like adopted children get joined to the new parents and become one in the family. By our own nature we could not have done this. It is a gift of God because he loved us and loves us.

We stoop down to children when they are little so that we can be at their level and be face to face with them. We make funny sounds that will attract them and amuse them in order to encourage them and relate to them. That is what God has done for us. He came to our level – he came to us as a baby and then as an infant, child and youth and man.

I was in Mexico City some years ago seeing the Museum of Mankind and frightened to death by the Monster Gods who devoured the hearts of thousands of young men every year to keep them sweet.

How sweet the yoke of Jesus Christ. What liberation from past religions of the fear of ghosts and ancestors and animals and objects. The wonderful news that God has become one with us in Bethlehem was liberation and bestowed a great dignity on that great continent as it did in Europe.

Humility is not one of the non Christian religion's virtues outside the Judeo-Christian culture. Here we have the Lord himself gently inviting us to come to him and telling us that he is lowly and humble of heart.

And why should we come? We should come to Jesus because we will find a great grace "you will find REST for your souls." Is that not the goal of every person to find rest in their innermost selves? Indeed it is so. But - for us to receive these spiritual gifts and consolations we have to be little ones in the presence of the Lord. Jesus bursts forth in pure joy when he thanks his Father for revealing these things not to the cleverdicks but the child- like and even clever people in this light have to be childlike. So it is not brains – big or small that get you to heaven but trust and openness and child likeness in the Lord's presence.

Now – that is not too difficult is it?

God bless,

Fr Tom Connolly

MARRIAGE. Every blessing on Michael Corrigan and Anna Marie Breheney and Dennis Doherty and Rose Kelly, John J. Byrne and Paula Rafferty, Anthony P. Caruana and Jane B. McMillan who have given themselves to each other in the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony in the last month here in the parish.

REDECORATION OF THE CHURCH. Thank you to all who have given me sums of money towards the cost of re-decorating the Church. You will notice how smart it looks now. The flower and server's sacristy has just had all new units put in to store all the candles and vases and other things. The old ones were falling off the wall.

ST THOMAS AQUINAS HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL IN ITS APPLICATION TTO BECOME A SPECIALIST HUMANITIES SCHOOL FROM SEPT. IT WILL BE THE FIRST SCHOOL IN MACNHESTER LEA TO FOCUS ON ENGLISH, MEDIA, HISTORY AND GEOGRAPHY. Mr O'Callaghan the Head says that "this is a real vote of confidence in the future of the school for it has had to beat of competition from other schools to get this status. The school will become one of the very best in Manchester." A month ago a £500,000 building project started in Improving the PE, Music and Drama facilities and since the start of the year over 100 new pupils have started at the school so that they have had to recruit new staff.


Father Jose arrived on 1st of July and is very welcome. He is helping out until the 19th August to allow Fr Carr and me to take vacations. Father comes from India and is doing Doctoral Studies in the University of Louvain in Belgium and is a friend of Frs Rolando and Kenneth who have supplied here in previous summers.

A Seminarian from Poland Marcin Korzeniowski also arrives this week and will be improving his English language and helping out pastorally in the parish. He is also very welcome.

Father Gervais Protais Yombo has written from Salzburg where is is completing Doctoral Studies to say he will be coming back to our parish to stay for a month or so in September before he returns to his native French Congo. (I am sure he will be a Bishop one day.)

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