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Sermon for 15th December 2013
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THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT cycle A + "Guadete Sunday" + 15TH DECEMBER 2013.

MESSAGE FROM THE PARISH PRIEST.

My Dear People,

Christmas is very near isn't it? Panic not Ė the liturgical colour today is Rose for we can already see the light of the Saviour under the door can't we? He is very near - the night is almost over and the morn will soon be here - that morn which will never end in night ever again but only in the realms of eternal light. "Be patient" says Saint James "the Lord is coming". Be like a farmer who waits for the seed. Christ is the farmer and his seed will not fail and his Holy Body the Church is that powerful seed which grows and grows and grows.

The waste lands and the wilderness will bloom says Isaiah, and they did. The frozen tundra of menís hearts will not remain that way. The need for the tender love of God in the human heart is planted too deeply to be suppressed forever and when this generation have tasted the sour fruits of its sins - then - like us they will delight in the Law of the Lord - not written, but in the hearts of all believers through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

This is the hope that Advent and the Nativity holds out. God will come and does come and will in the future come. There is time now for us all to receive Him and to love Him and welcome him and herald Him to others by our example.

On Monday last we celebrated the Solemnity of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. This doctrine, revealed by the Holy Spirit, tells us that there is one exception to the cycle of Original Sin - Mary of Nazareth. By the merits of Christ's Passion and death - (yet to happen in time) she was made ALL HOLY to prepare her for the task she was invited to fulfil. Mary was conceived - free from the sin of our first parents. Being free from sin made her soul and her body the most perfect mirror for the image of the Divine Son. Like the Hubble space instrument Ė she reflected the perfect beauty of God. Four years after this dogma (1854) Our Lady appeared in Lourdes (1858) and revealed to Bernadette that she was THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION. It was confirmation if we ever needed it.

Note the extra Confession times for Advent at the Holy Name and the Hidden Gem have loads of extra Confessions at this time. Take advantage.

God Bless,

Father Tom Connolly


CHRISTMAS CARD - PLEASE TAKE ONE FOR EACH HOUSEHOLD. ALL THE TIMES FOR CHRISTMAS ARE THERE AND NEW YEAR.

APF Red Mission Boxes. MISSIO: The Collectors are on their way for the last quarter. MRS C. BOOTH (HON SEC)

A Divine Experience at G Mex

Last Saturday 10000 people gathered at G Mex in Manchester to hear God's Word. A venue very often used for different cultural shows reverberated in rock music. This time it had witnessed something opposite and extra special. It was a one day retreat for renewal and reconciliation. Fr. Xavier Khan Vattayil was the priest who led the Spirit filled Abhishekagni Convention. Boys, girls and families had a very great time to relax, pray and bring their joys and sorrows to Christ's feet. Bishop Mark Davies inaugurated the convention and gave the message during the Holy Mass. Bishop Terence Brain of the Diocese of Salford led the Eucharistic Procession and did the final blessing. For thousands it was a wonderful day to prepare for Christmas. GMex Stadium echoed with Godís praises. Fr. George Cheeramkuzhy.

CHRISTMAS PRESENTS FOR NEEDY KIDS. You know the system- a modest wrapped gift with a label on clearly marked FOR A SPECIAL BOY OR SPECIAL GIRL AGE---- WITH LOVE AND HAPPY CHRISTMAS. LEAVE THEM NEAR THE SACRED HEART SHRINE BUT DO IT SOON SO I CAN GET THEM TO THE LOOKED AFTER KIDS OF OUR DIOCESE WELL BEFORE CHRISTMAS DAY.

ACCUSATIONS: Everyone you know is innocent until proven guilty. That applies to priests as well. Out of the 800 religious Brothers accused in Ireland last year only 18 were convicted. That of course was 18 too many. - The Press is never interested in that eh?





Bidding Prayers

Bidding Prayers Advent III

BIDDING PRAYERS 3RD OF ADVENT YEAR A

PRIEST. The Lord our God is coming: let us put aside fear, and look forward to the future with courage.

Reader: Christ is the one longed for by the nations - Lord, come this Christmas and fill the emptiness of menís hearts and fill them with the hope of redemption. Lord hear us.

Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and End of all thing and all human History - may his coming bless these times of ours to bring forth the shoots of justice and goodness in mankind. Lord in your mercy.

We pray for the Armed services of our country and their families as they serve abroad and in places of armed conflict. Protect their young lives and bring them home safe and well. May justice follow in the path of conflict Lord in your mercy.

For expectant Mothers today that they will be able to look forward with great hope in Christ for the future of their unborn child. Bless all the mothers of our community. Lord in your mercy.

For the Synod on the Family which Pope Francis has called - that its deliberations may make clear to the Christian people the divine vocation of family life. Lord in your mercy.

For all our dear Sick and their carers, that the Lord in his tender mercy may be with them in their suffering and they, in union with him: Ann Brady, Patrick and Kath Banahan, Susan Kelly, Tom and Brenda Lynch, Frances Howarth , Denis McLoughlin, Maura McBrien, Irene Farrelly, Ronnie Molloy, Kirsty Rafferty. Lord in your mercy.

For all those who have died recently Joe Groarke, Nellie Collins, Timothy Collins, Francisca Poka AND For all those whose anniversaries occur about this time: Michael Gallagher, Mary Mullen, Michael McHugh, Kevin Devanney, (11am), Mary Mullins (VIGIL), Tommy Mimnagh, Peter and Brigid Mimnagh, James and Rose McKenna, Rosella Devlin, Maureen Burke.

May their souls and the souls of allÖ.

Mary is the one who was with our Saviour from Bethlehem to Calvary - may she pray for us now - O Mary, conceived without sin. Pray for us who have recourse to thee. Hail Mary...

Priest: Lord, hear our prayer and grant that we who await in faith the coming of your Son may be rewarded by being part of his company in heaven. Where he lives forever and ever. Amen.