SIXTEENTH SUNDAY OF YEAR B + 22ND JULY 2012.
MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST.
My Dear people,
It is a bit scary for a priest to read the First Reading today from Jeremiah. He is remonstrating on God's behalf with the Religious Leaders in his day for their lack of care of the Flock entrusted to them by God. He tells them that they HAVE LET THE FLOCK BE SCATTERED AND NOT TAKEN CARE OF THEM - WANDERING AS THEY ARE. You know what happens to sheep that wander? Well it is the same for us - we use the word Drifter don't we? It is when a person is not rooted in a family or community and drifts dangerously from place to place - no stability. Anything can happen to that person and even if they get murdered they are not missed for a long time. Thus, you see how important it is that the religious leaders keep their people rooted and cared for and belonging. Without that care which gathers the body of Christ around the Altar people can get into all kinds of trouble and go astray.
The disgraceful infidelity of those leaders then opens up to a most wonderful Promise. God says through Jeremiah - "I will raise a virtuous Branch for David (our Lord's family) a true king, honest and wise and full of integrity." He is talking our Jesus Christ our course. Our Lord is the Good Shepherd who literally lays down his life for his sheep - not like the hired man who runs off and lets the wolf scatter the flock.
Here in the Gospel today we get an insight into how our Lord was going to continue his Shepherding of the Flock - of the People God has called his own. He chose apostles who were to shepherd Christ's flock.
The Twelve came back full of joy at the success of their mission (last week they were summoned and sent out if your call to mind). It had worked! They followed our Lord's instructions and it had worked. So what does Jesus do? He has a plan to remove them from this period of active apostolic work and to take them away to a quiet place away from all the people still looking for them in their need. That was our Lord's plan and still that pattern laid down by our Lord is practised today. Every priest has to make an annual Retreat. He has to go away for a time from the cares of the parish and to spend a quiet time with the Lord. Otherwise you dry up and you will be no use to anyone. Even though our Lord's plan did not take off this time - they crowds guessed where he was going and beat him to it and Jesus took pity on them. But, be rest assured that the plan did go ahead and they did get away eventually to be "all by themselves and rest for a while."
Now that last bit is something we all need to do is it not? Even if it is only after the kids are put to bed and we enjoy a bit of peace. Treasure it - do some spiritual reading- pray and pray for those who have asked you to pray. You must speak to our Lord of your life – your fears and hopes- your concerns, of the ones you love and hate!
This space in your life to “come away and rest for a while” is not addressed to the clergy alone you know. We all should find that space for Jesus in our lives so we can hear his voice.
As priests me and Father George spend most our waking hours in the field of the apostolate. So pray for us that we don’t get dried out and not have that zeal for the flock Christ has entrusted to us.. Woe betide us if our Lord tells us at our Judgement that we have allowed his people to be scattered!!
Safe journey, to all travelling and come back safe and sound and rested.
God Bless you all.
Father Tom Connolly
OUR SCHOOL OF ST KENTIGERNS has had wonderful SATS results this year and I would like to thank Mr Jackson our Head for the great focus and energy he has used to restore our success.
SPORTS we also won the championship in Manchester Schools Sports at Sports City the other day - winning all the first prizes. Well done children- you are the future Olympic champions.
DREAM ZONE Sir Gerald Kaufmann opened the new Dream Zone in our school on Friday and Father Connolly blest it. It is an amazing high tech room where you can recreate the inside of a pyramid or the sounds and sights of the rain forest and thousands of other such things. The pupils elected to call it "The Dream Zone". The Governors and a parent from each class were invited to be present for the opening. It must be a great asset to the quality of learning in our school. We also have starting a lot new teachers who are all very well qualified graduates with a Catholic Teachers Certificate to boot. The new term will be so exiting. We will be advertising for a Head and Deputy in the new Term. Fr. Tom Connolly (Chair of Governors)
Father Martin is on retreat for the next 10 days and Father George will be soon going home to Kerala , India for some time for holidays soon so I will be stretched a bit until Father Martin gets back.
39TH ROSARY ANNUAL CRUSADE – PLATT FIELDS SATURDAY 8TH SEPTEMBER 2.30 – 4.30 PM IN PLATT FIELDS PARK (NEAR TO HOLY TRINITY, PLATT). Guest Preach – do come – one and all. (legion of Mary)
"VIGILS FOR THE UNBORN" Our Lady's Moss Side 8.30pm last Friday of each month. 27th July, 31st August, 28th Sept preceded by Latin Mass at 7pm at St Jospeh's, Longsight - Plymouth Grove. D. Marshall 07966 613 330
SCAFFOLDING ON THE HOUSE. The bad weather has delayed things by three weeks. The re-pointing the brick work is done and a few ridge tiles need relaying and the chimney needs a bit of work- and then the scaffold will come down. The new windows have been fitted so everywhere is now double galzed so we should save some money on heating in the winter.
THE CLUB: A new roof has begun on the Social Club and I must thank Kevin Fitzpatrick for supervising all these works and getting really good prices for the lot. MR O'KEEFE HAS BEEN PLAYING THE GUITAR AT THE VIGIL MASS FOR AT LEAST 20 YEARS. TONIGHT AT THE MASS I AM PRESENTING HIM WITH A GIFT FROM THE PARISH TO MARK OUR GRATITUDE. THE MUSIC FOR THE VIGIL IS ALWAYS SO PRAYERFUL SO THANK TO PETER, TO CAROL AND ANN MARIE.
MARRIAGE JUBILEES. On Saturday 27th Oct at 12 noon the Bishop will celebrate Mass in the cathedral at Chapel Street, Salford for couples celebrating Golden or Diamond jubilees this year or early in 2013. If you would like an Invite from the Bishop - tell Father Connolly.
Bidding Prayers 16th Sunday B.
Christ invites all to come away and rest for a while in his company. May he grant our prayers of faith.
Reader: For all those who lead the life of contemplation in religious communities - that their witness will act as a beacon of consolation to the wider world. Lord in your mercy. Hear our prayer.
That we may as a community of the faithful, be men and women of Prayer - that we will be intent on showing our love of Christ by spending time with him. Lord in your mercy.
For the success of the Olympic Games in our Nation that the true spirit of sport and human excellence may prevail and that all will be kept safe from those who desire to harm us. Lord in your mercy.
We commend to God’s care all in our schools who have begun their holidays - that they return safe and sound and rested. Lord in your mercy.
For our priests that they be true shepherds of the flock of Christ and communicate his truth and love to a flock which is eager to hear. Give them the spirit of fidelity to the Supreme Shepherd. Protect them from the snares of the Enemy. Lord in your mercy.
For those who feel weakness and illness in their mortal bodies that the shepherd of the flock may refresh them: Jo Kirby, Margaret Burke, Patricia Williams, Mary Moran, Michael Kelly, Kathleen Burke, Kathleen Burke, Chris Lydon. Lord in your mercy.
Christ the good Shepherd of the flock brings us to heaven- may he show his glory and the glory of the Father and the Spirit to those who have died: Francis Walsh, Paul Christopher Sweeney, Lauren Wrynne, Pat McHale
All those whose anniversaries fall now: Bob Walsh (11am) Bridie Elmore, Sarah Hannah, Issac Etta, Bill McDonagh and Paddy and Kathleen Kavanagh. May their souls, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.
O Mary Conceived without sin. Pray for us who have recourse to thee. HAIL MARY, FULL OF GRACE.
O Lord and heavenly Father of our Lord Jesus Christ - hear and give answer to our heartfelt petitions which we make in faith and through Christ our Lord. AMEN