ELEVENTH SUNDAY OF THE YEAR cycle b + 17TH JUNE 2012.
MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST.
My Dear People,
The children of St KENTIGERN'S make their First HOLY Communion Today and the children of St Edwards, next Sunday.
It is a time therefore for us to reflect on the wonder of the First Communion Day for all the children of the Church for each year many millions of our children make their first Holy Communion. You will remember yours I am sure for it is unique to each of us with our own school and teachers and priests of the time and the parish and my family. The way we dressed up for the occasion made us the very centre of attention. I know my brother woke me up at midnight and told me I was late for my First Communion until I realised he was kidding me.
With the white shirt and red tie and rosette and medal we were scrubbed till we shone and the hair was brylcreamed so not one hair was out of kilter. We lined up outside the English Martyrs - Whalley Range - all 99 of us - 2 classes with 47 + in each class . How did the teachers manage with no classroom help? Well there was not one out of line and we stood and waited to be led into the church. Each of us was very serious. The girls were transformed and we could hardly recognise them. They looked like Brides.
We all knew our catechism off by heart and knew the doctrine of the church on Transubstantiation as our children do. We knew how to receive with reverence the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Christ our Eucharistic Lord. Miss Branston had practised us with Walls wafers ! Head back, chin up, mouth open, tongue on the bottom lip. Then of course we did not have to look at the host and say amen and were kneeling - so will our children today and next week. Our Parish Priest, Canon Motler gave us our First Holy Communion. I still have the certificate signed by him, God be good to him. I remember well the sensation of going back to my place, kneeling down and being super aware of Jesus within my breast and simply knowing it and loving it.
Think of the power of Christ entering your soul for the first time. How much we had longed for Him and yet in some way feared that we might make a mess of it or not believe as much as we should that he was truly and substantially present in the Outward Sign. We might touch the Sacred Host with our TEETH!! But think of the pure faith and sinless soul you had then and think of how often you have received our Lord since - thousands of times. Every saint in the Church had their First Communion. We have lovely photos of Blessed Pope John Paul and Pope Benedict on their First Communion day all dressed in white. It is a blessed moment each year celebrated near the feast of Corpus Christi.
Pray for these our children. They do not have the same faith background many of the older generation had. Times are Godless and hard and harsh for these little lambs of Christ's flock. Pray for their parents who have brought them thus far and pray that from this yearís little flock we might have a future priest to minister to Christís flock. God bless them all and their families today and next week in St Edwards.
From Father Tom Connolly
FATHER GEORGE WILL LEAD THE CHILDREN OF ST EDWARDS IN THEIR FIRST COMMUNION NEXT WEEK SINCE HE HAS WORKED VERY CLOSELY WITH THE SCHOOL OVER THE LAST YEAR AND MADE A GREAT CONTRIBUTION. WITH THEIR TEACHERS AND CLASSROOM ASSISTANTS.
NEXT SUNDAY (24TH) IS THE FEAST OF THE BIRTHDAY OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST - READERS PLEASE NOTE.
Notice that 29th June is a HOLY DAY OF OBLIGATION SS PETER AND PAUL.
Marian procession 2012 1st Oct.