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Sermon for 30 January 2011
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4th SUNDAY A JANUARY 30th 2011.

MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST

My Dear People,

Today the Deanery Marriage Course begins in the Marian Room of our Parish Centre. Pray for the Engaged Couples won't you? They are firming up the biggest promise they will ever make. Their future happiness depends upon it. The Church has always taught that God made Marriage the foundation stone of society inasmuch as all of us are brought into this world and nurtured through marriage of a man and woman.

In the Beatitudes we find the perfect description of our Lord himself and his character and his way of looking at us and our world. Each of the Blesseds are a strand in the garment of Christ making up a most amazing new teaching concerning what makes a man or woman holy and happy and blest. Each applies to Christ directly and through him to each of us. At the end of our Life we should be able to see ourselves as "children of the Beatitudes". The new Christian man and woman has formed in our culture since the time of St. Augustine as Christian ethos which is reflected in our Laws and Customs. The more people accept Christ's teaching on the Beatitudes the more Christian a culture comes to be. A culture without Christ becomes hard and cruel - back to the jungle kind of culture. Some people think we have reached that again but I would hope that the vast majority of folk are still imbued with a more Christian way of thinking and acting.

To hunger for the rightness of the Divine Law, to have a simple and unsullied heart, to weep for the things God weeps for, to be merciful as God is, to be peacemakers and not stirrers, to be happy when we feel the whip for being faithful to the Catholic Faith, to be meek and gentle in a world that only believes in selling itself for all it is worth is indeed to have the mind of Christ.

As St Paul tells the Corinthians - "you were not influential people or from noble families" yet God chose them.

In the end Christ's charter will triumph over this world. As our Lord said "I have overcome the world". It is good to look at The Beatitudes to prepare for Confession...see if I am bearing these characteristics our Lord describes and wants in us.

They formed generation you know and civilisations. The Stalins and Hitlers rejected them completely and looked what happened. Millions of little people perished. The same is now - 200,000 babies in the womb destroyed legally each year in GB and now a campaign every year from some Big Shot looking for a legal way to take the lives of the old or terminally ill. Dying with Dignity is the title of this years' campaign begun in The Independent newspaper.

It is for us to examine our loves in the light of the Beatitudes and re-focus our struggle for perfect love. All a long way from our Lord's wonderful and Divine teaching on the hill of the Beatitudes.

God Bless,

Father Tom Connolly

VIGIL OF PRAYER WILL TAKE PLACE on SAT OF EACH WEEK AT 10.30AM OUTSIDE THE MARIE STOPES ABORTION CLINIC IN WYNNSTAY GROVE, OPP SAINSBURY'S.

Census Cards: Make sure you have filled in the Parish Card at the back of Church.

It is essential for us to know the people and the address they come from for the future of our parish in these times of closures and amalgamations. Do it now.

THE BISHOP has asked all Parishes to review the number of Sunday Masses given the shortage of clergy and sometimes the shortage of LAITY at those Masses ! SO BE PREPARED TO HAVE A REDUCTION. ST KENTIGERNS MIGHT HAVE ONE MAIN SUNDAY MORNING MASS FOR EXAMPLE AND NO EVENING MASS. ST EDWARDS MIGHT JUST HAVE THE ONE SUNDAY MASS. I SAY "MIGHT" BUT THE CHURCH IS HARDLY FULL AT MOST MASSES EH?

THE COLLECTION. Folk must get real on the amount they contribute to the upkeep of their church and clergy. There are far too many small coins in the collection. Some envelopes contain 37p and 50p - can you believe it? You would not give a child that to buy an icecream, never mind Almighty God and His Holy Church. Small change usually means small amounts. The gas and electric go up every quarter. The cost of repairs runs into a thousands of pounds dead easy. In St Edwards a generous soul paid for the new Church gas boiler system in order to reduce the waste and it has worked but St Edwards does not take up enough collection to upkeep the church fabric or to support one priest. I want all parishioners to read this in a spirit of togetherness. Do not be tight or mean in your Church Collection. Remember Cain and Abel. God sees what you put in and the widow's mite is still a huge sum!!

THE PRESENTATION OF THE LORD OR CANDLEMAS DAY. On Wednesday 2nd February it will be Candlemas Day and at the Mass the candles will be blest and their will be a procession in Church in honour of that procession into the Temple of our Lord in the arms of his Mother and the fatherly eye of Joseph. It marks the beginning of the Light of the World entering our darkened world and also marks the return of the longer days. I always see that Spring begins to show from this feast of our Lady.

BLESSING OF THROATS. Thursday is the feast of St Blaise, Bishop and Martyr. He is the patron of throats and throats will be blest at the Mass with the blest candles.

Mrs Mary Colbert died on Wednesday - may God be good to her. Mary was the housekeeper for many years at St Kentigerns Presbytery to Father Murphy and to me and helped to run much fundraising in the Social Club with Tommy her husband and Christine Booth in the era before Kevin.





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