FOURTH SUNDAY OF the YEAR IN ORDINARY TIME CYCLE B. + 29th January 2012.
MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST
My Dear People,
"I will put my words into his mouth and he shall tell them all I command him" - thus the Father speak to Moses the promise of the true prophet who was to come into the world and who would fulfil all the previous prophets proclaimed as Godís spokesmen. Here we have our Lord's arrival on the public scene and enacting his Public Ministry in the company oft he chosen Twelve and the disciples and the holy women who accompanied them and who looked after their needs (as they still do!)
Today we encounter our Lord in the synagogue teaching with divine authority so that people could tell the difference between what they usually heard Ė which was the rabbi quoting the Tradition of the elders etc. Here our Lord spoke with his own authority.
It is a great comfort as Christ's priest and as the Bishopís co-operator that I speak and act, when I teach and preach and celebrate the life giving Sacraments, that I do so with the Divine Mandate. When people say: "who says this?" I can answer "Jesus Christ speaks in me and through me for I am his priest and I speak his word - the word he wants you to respond to."
I will give you an example. Sometime ago Fr. Flynn held a year meeting with the top classes of our feeder school, Loreto High when he was Chaplain. The topic was on the Catholic teaching on the human body and how we are to use it in keeping the Law of God. The use of sexual powers came up and Father explained fully as he could the Catholic teaching on contraception and fertility and openness to life and marriage fidelity and chastity etc. The youth were eager, very eager to know more. No one mocked or dissented. You see - the truth from God will attract young hearts. It will liberate them. It is a very different message from Satan is it not and look where that gets them - the dregs.
No the youth were attracted to the truth as Father expounded it. The priest and teachers and parents who explain the Catholic teaching with fidelity will find by and large that their young ones will respond for it is so different from those around them and it is deeply attractive. But it has to be given "With Authority" and that is what has been lacking. We Catholics have become weak by not clinging to Christ as the centre of our life and our teaching. Even Bishops have compromised and made the teaching of the Faith in our schools weak and unattractive thinking they would keep the youth. This poor gruel soon put them off and they left in droves and still do. We reap the fruits in few vocations to the priestly ministry and the holiness of married life. See what I mean?
When Jesus met with the man Possessed, the devil knew his enemy. "What do you want with us?" the devil said. At our Lord's command the devil left him. First Jesus silenced the devil and then cast him out.
I think we need to cast out many devils before the Church gets its courage back to really witness to the reality of Jesus Christ. As Pope Paul said - "the world will listen to witnesses". Our Nation is sinking into a morass of immorality and unethical thinking and culture. People forget that we are creatures, the work of Godís hands and were purchased at a great price - Christ's blood. However - today we begin to open our eyes to the great works of Christ as he speaks and acts in the Gospel of Saint Mark each Sunday. Let us pray the Gospel and meditate on it and read it a few times before the Mass if we can. Learn about Jesus in the scriptures and you will love Him all the more and be glad to follow His Way. Lectio Divina is a great way of learning about the Scripture and listening to Christ speaking to the heart and mind. It happens every Thursday in the sacristy at St Edwards for both parishes.
Father Tom Connolly.
MARY'S MEALS ARE HOLDING A DANCE AT ST JOHN'S HIGH LANE PARISH CENTRE, CHORLTON ON 24TH FEB. TICKETS £2. ON SALE AT THE BACK OF CHURCH. FRANCA RIZZO WILL BE THERE FOR THE 9AM SELLING THEM. YOU RAISED £4000 LAST YEAR FROM THE BLUE BOXES. Well done.
CHANGE IN THE MASS TIMES NEXT WEEK. BECAUSE OF FUNERALS MASS ON MONDAY WILL BE AT 11AM THE LATE EDDIE KENNY'S FUNERAL MASS.
TUESDAY MASS WILL BE AT MIDDAY - THE LATE SAM OíKEEFE'S FUNERAL MASS.