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Sermon for 2 December 2012
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FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT Year of Faith Cycle C. + 2ND December 2012.

MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST.

My Dear People,

There is a Pastoral Letter from the Bishop today.

Advent has begun.

Our Lord is coming soon - the sands of time run low. Oh come Lord Jesus and rescue our fallen and confused world as it races along a path which will take it further away from its Saviour. Advent is a time for re-visiting the certainty of Christ's Return in Glory to Judge the Living and the Dead. We, who belong to Him should have no fear. He comes to vindicate his chosen ones and to set them in heaven by his side.

Jeremiah talks about a city so holy in the life of its inhabitants that the city will be re-named "The Lord is our integrity". Imagine our City being called that now! Our Lord tells us into today's Gospel to watch it or our hearts will become coarsened and the coming of Christ will not be a saving act for us to rejoice in but like a trap that is sprung on us without warning and a terrible thing too. But for Christ's faithful it will be liberation not a trap.

We should live actually with a sense of longing in our hearts for Christ's kingdom to come. We should mourn for this world for its great and terrible rejection of God and the final judgement awaiting it. We should weep for those who do not weep for their sins and pray for their conversion. "We long to see thee so, to see the newly born", the Advent childrenís hymn proclaims and so we should LONG with all our hearts to see Christ coming in great Power and Glory on the clouds of heaven. This vision inspired the martyrs and the saints in every generation. When the whole might of the Roman power weighed in against the Catholic Church in those first 300 years they never despaired or lost hearts at what they suffered. They transformed that civilisation and converted it. So must we.

As our Government along with other Western powers sets out to raise same sex unions into an equal with marriage, giving grave offence to Almighty God and to undermine the union of man and woman, we must not lose hope or our vision. We must not succumb for Jesus says "Do not be afraid - I have overcome the world." I can see it in the future that priests and teachers will be prosecuted for teaching the Moral of the Catholic Faith for they will be found guilty of thought crime - having values not approved by the State. The State has no right to set itself up above the Moral Law., That is not democracy. So for the sake of so called "Equality" we are forbidden to speak. It is like Henry VIII all over again. He had to destroy the very visible reminder of the old Church in order to drive it from people's minds so they would not re-call how it used to be. It is the same now and it seems to matter little which Political party is in Power. Well they will all be subject to our Blessed Lord's final judgement when he comes again to Judge the living and the Dead. The Christ child of Bethlehem do not come to us in vain you know.

Next Sunday afternoon at 4.00pm our children will be making their First Confession. Quite a few visiting priests will be here. What a great way to begin our preparation for the Nativity of our Lord; the forgiveness of sins- for that is why He came.

Father Tom Connolly


THE ADVENT WREATH WILL BE LIT TODAY FOR THE FOUR SUNDAYS OF ADVENT TO SYMBOLISE THE GROWING SEA OF LIGHT AS CHRIST COMES TO US.

Christmas Fair today after the 11 O'Clock Mass. DO COME AND HAVE A GAELIC COFFEE AND THANKS TO ALL WHO HAVE WORKED SO HARD.

Planned giving. For you to take away at the porch of the church.

Almanacs £3 on sale at the porch.

Thanks or the attendance at the Wednesday Meeting for Advent and the Year of Faith in the Marian Room on Wed evening by DAVID PAYNE.

GOLDEN WEDDING COUPLE:JOHN AND MARY McCOLGAN CELEBRATED 50 YEARS OF Christian Marriage on Saturday. They were married at the Holy Name on 1st December 1962. Well done. We had a Mass of thanksgiving at St Edwards on 1st December for the whole family and friends, and a they got a Papal; Blessing Parchment too for the occasion.





Bidding Prayers

BIDDING PRAYERS 1st OF ADVENT C

Priest: Praying at all times for the strength to survive, we turn to Christ the author of life for that strength and help in our needs and the needs of our world.

Reader: We commend to our Lord Jesus Christ - the lives of all men and women who inhabit the face of the earth at this moment - that they may find hope in the message of Advent that the Saviour of mankind is coming to save the whole world. Lord, in your mercy.

For all those who have lost homes and livelihoods and communications in the flooding that they will be helped to get their lives back together again in time for the Christmas celebration. Lord in your mercy.

That we as a Christian community will have the strength to lift our heads high in the face of all the set backs and attacks on the Universal Church, and stand before the Son of Man with confidence and integrity. Lord hear us.

We ask for the resolution of the terrible scandal of the abusing of children and minors, that the damage done to the Body of Christ and his dear little ones will be overcome by Godís abundant grace. Lord in your mercy.

As Advent begins we seek God's grace to spend this holy time fruitfully in preparing our souls for the Birth of our Divine Saviour. Lord, in your mercy.

For the sick and the housebound we pray: Ronnie Molloy, Mary Molloy, Kathleen Burke, Said McLoughlin, Chris Lydon, Father McGarry, Anne Marie Martin, Anthony Dwyer, M. Azicate, Bridie Ahern, Debbie Egan, Peter Bradley, Phyliss Walsh, Peter Ramsbottom. Lord in your mercy.

We ask Almighty God to bring to heaven those who have recently died, Maria Caruana, Thomas Quinn, Lily Williams.

AND

All those whose anniversaries occur: Mary Mullens, Margaret Dunne (11am), Mary Ellen Brady (am), Margaret and Michael Cullen, Doreen Cahill (6.30 Sunday), Tim Clarke. May their souls and the souls of all..

O Mary you are the one who gave us the Christ child - we are your children too - O Mary, Conceived without sin. Pray for us who have recourse to thee. Hail Mary, full of grace.

Priest: Lord, we are nothing without you. As you receive these Advent prayers, sustain us with the light of Christ. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.