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Sermon for 1st December 2013
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FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT. A + 1st December. . 2013

THERE IS A Pastoral Letter to be read today from the Bishop.

MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST

My Dear People,

THIS WEEKEND IS THE FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT AND OUR CHRISTMAS FAYRE IS ON THIS SUNDAY AT MIDDAY IN ST KENT'S CLUB - I HOPE YOU ALL COME FROM BOTH ST KENTIGERN'S AND ST EDWARD'S PARISHES. IT IS ALWAYS A GREAT SOCIAL OCCASION TOO. I THANK ALL THE HELPERS FOR SORTING THE GOODS OUT AND THE KIND PEOPLE WHO SENT THE GOODS.

On a more serious note...

One of the demons of the West Pope Benedict talked about in his book is the demon of drugs. The false and empty lives of Westerners cause them to be drawn to drug abuse as recreation. Then their lives are ruined by addiction. The suppliers in the poor world are also consumed by the demon of the violent cartels which make criminal conspiracies almost parallel with the Government of that nation. They murder anyone who stands in their way of the drug trade. It is difficult to Stay Awake when you are in the clutches of such things and many are. Pope Francis too talks about this in his latest Big Letter to the Church EVANGELI GAUDIUM. The sheer scale of the evil is a scourge for modern humanity. He says the Christian people have to engage with this as it were – at the coal face – getting dirty!!!

Our society is blighted by the poppies of Afghanistan and what failed at the gates of Vienna and the Naval Battle of Lepanto may now beat nations which have all but abandoned the Christian Faith.

Advent brings a strong beam of hope into this darkened world. "Stay Awake" our Lord declares - you do not know when the Son of man will come. In the days of Noah people carried on as though there was no tomorrow and the symbol of the Great Flood is still with us as the consequences of not keeping the Covenant with the Living God who made us.

So it is now and the words written on the walls of the city of Jerusalem: "The law will go out from Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem" (Isaiah 2:5) is still true for the new Jerusalem is Christ’s Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church and the word of the Lord goes out from it to the whole world.

I was reading a book on Hitler recently and so many of the witnesses of those times who were anything but Catholics said that the only body which taught systematically and with great logical argument against the annihilation of the Jews and the handicapped adults and children was the Catholic Church. No one else gave systematic argument to the evil doing in the midst of the Nazi all enveloping ideology which all the Police Chiefs and University officials and Judges and Medics went along with. Just like now isn’t it? And our Lord speaks to us and to the whole world through the lips of our Mother the Church - through the Vicars of Christ – the many amazing Popes we have had over the last one hundred and fifty years The Church is used to being a lone voice in the wilderness like John the Baptist but it does not stop it proclaiming Christ and his divine Rule and His ultimate victory. It often pays the price too in blood. Our Lady of Fatima’s promise has come true. President Putin of Russia was meeting with Pope Francis during last week talking about how he can protect the Christians of Syria with Pope’s support!

Now – there is something to be thinking about for you all. Thanks you for reading this.

Happy Advent – nearly Christmas already!

Father Tom Connolly

ADVENT READING A Word in Season is at the back of church – one per household – for Advent reading.

THE POPE’S LETTER WILL BE ON SALE AT £3.50 WHEN IT COMES.

YOUNG WOMEN... THIS IS ADDRESSED TO YOU. Are you interested in a career in Hospitality? Interest in a summer placement in London? Visit www.lakefield.org.uk or phone Frankie on 020 7794 5669 for further information. We also offer vocational qualifications that will qualify you for immediate work in this industry.

I recommend this personally. Father Tom Connolly.

Monday 9th December -The Solemnity of The Immaculate Conception 7:30pm. St Edward's, Thurloe Street, Rusholme will be celebrating Mass in thanksgiving of this years Marian Procession. This is a great opportunity to give thanks to God for the many graces and blessings received. This years video will be shown with light refreshments in the Church Hall after Mass. Copies of the video will also be available for you to take away. Everyone is welcome, not just those who took part.





Bidding Prayers

Bidding Prayers Advent I

Bidding for First Sun Advent A.

Priest: Father, you have given us the grace of looking forward to the coming of your Son. Send us your loving Kindness.

Reader: Lord, bring us to life: may we be the servants found watching when the Master returns. Lord in your mercy.

Send your Son to those who wait in hope: let no person search for you in vain but show them the light of truth. Lord in your mercy.

Bless us as we work: give us faith until the end, when your Son will come in Glory. Lord in your mercy.

Father, we praise you for the presence of the Spirit in our lives, making men and women bearers of your message and your purpose. May Pope Francis' letter be a call for renewal of faith in God's Holy People this Advent and the closure of the Year of Faith. Lord in your mercy We long to see thee- may the sick be comforted by your coming in this Advent tide. We commend to your healing love the infant Charles Palin, Cath Naughton, Mary Tivnan, Frances Howarth, Michael Connolly, Brendan Byrne, BeAnn Grady. Lord in your mercy.

Give rest to those who have died in Christ, for with you there is mercy and fullness of redemption: Mary Leyden, Lorenzina Rizzo, Francesca Poka, and Francis Paul Frost AND For all those holy souls whom we have loved in life and who now we pray for in death: Doreen Cahill (11am) Christine Coughlin and Elizabeth Coughlin, (VIGIL), Phyliss Walsh, (6.30 Sunday MONTH'S MIND) Marie Sullivan (MONTH'S MIND), Kathleen Bowes (Wed 27 Nov), Seamus McKeown, John Charles McKenna.

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...

Priest: Oh God our Father, hear the humble Advent cry of your people who are longing for the coming of their Saviour, Jesus Christ wh live for ever and ever. Amen.