Saturday, 24 January 2015

3rd Sunday of the Year

Weekend Masses Sat 18.30hrs & Sun 10.00hrs

No Masses this week: Fr John is away

There is a Requiem on Wed at 12.30pm for Mary Rose Connolly. This will be said by Fr Stamp

We welcome Fr McLaughlin this Sunday Morning to celebrate Mass with us.

Next weekend Fr Reg Riley, a Marist, will make an appeal on behalf of the Missions.

Fr John will be back for Mon 2 Feb

 

The Office will be closed Mon/Tues and open this week Wed – Fri 10am – 2pm

 

Please remember in your prayers

Sick and housebound: Beth Tomlinson, Paul Hughes, Mary O'Connor, and John Thomas.

Lately Dead: Valerie Kennedy, Mary Rose (Patsy) Connolly, Owen Mason, John Kay, Generose Thompson, John Holden  

Anniversaries: Frank Batt, Rosina Hughes, Teresa Ainsworth

**********************************************************************************

The Things we Value

In our "throw-away society" it is very easy not to value goods as much as we used to, after all you can replace them quite easily with a new one. The trouble with this is that we can tend to treat everything the same way. Everything can be replaced! Speak to engineers and they hate the fact that what they used to fix can now just be replaced by a whole component and therefore why bother to fix the small part if it is not cost effective. What happens is that the art of being able to use one's own ability comes at a higher price than being able to replace something cheaper.

We like to teach our children the art of valuing what they have, but even then if they always get what they want then do they value what they have. Some people talk of wearing clothes once before they get rid of them. The occasion has passed so there is no more use for it, discard it now as it is taking up space!

If there was a fire at your house what would be the things that you would run in to save, knowing that all the family and pets were safe. You may find that you will look to save things that are not so much valuable but cannot be replaced, things of sentimental value that we would feel lost without.

With our faith do we feel that it is a great value to us? Do we feel that it is worth holding onto no matter what? Would we do anything to keep it? It may not be economically valuable but it may mean everything to us.

Jonah cared about Nineveh. Paul, in today's reading tells everyone to think of what needs to be valued before the end of the world comes. Jesus, in the Gospel, preaches an urgency to repent "The time has come!"

If we do not value the things around us then we will lose them as they lose their value. A pearl of great price only has a great price if people want it. Let us try to value what we have, our life, our health, the people we love and our faith.

Pope Francis tells us to value the poor. Why, because the poor value what little they have whereas the rich tend to look somewhere else for other riches. There is a great lesson to be learnt here. Let us value what we have, not value what we want, and to know the difference.                                                                                                                                                Fr John

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Baptism of the Lord

Weekend Masses Sat 18.30hrs & Sun 10.00hrs

Masses this week

Tues –   11.30am Requiem Mass for Tommy Meredith

Wed - 12 noon Mass followed by packed lunch

Thurs – 10.am Requiem Mass for Kevin Kennedy

Fri – 12 noon Mass followed by a cooked meal

 

Please remember in your prayers

Sick and housebound: Mary O'Connor, Winnie McKenna, and John Thomas.

Lately Dead: Fr Frank Fitzpatrick, Kevin Kennedy, Tommy Meredith  

Anniversaries: Patrick Keenan, Joe Duggan, Beth Alveston,  Edwin Riley, Fred Partington, Mary & Michael Coyne, Constance Nuttall, William Hope, Gerard Priest, Peter Wilkinson, John Edward Sweeney, Richard Chambers, Damyan Eccles, Colin Wasdell

************************************************************************************************

A NEW YEAR'S BLESSING

 

May your inner vision be transformed so that you can see more

clearly your own journey with all humankind as a journey of peace,

hope, and bondedness (Nm 24:15-17; Jn 20:20)

May your God be someone you can lean on in your weak or painful moments.

May you know God as your rock, your shelter, your strength,

your wing of comfort and support (Ps 94:18)

May you be aware of all the places your feet carry you in the new year.

May you know "How beautiful are the feet of the messenger of good news" (Rom 10:15)

May you not be afraid of the questions that press upon your mind and heart.

May you welcome the questions and wait patiently for the day

when they will have their answers (Mt 11:3)

May you be the one with welcome in your smile and hello

etched upon your hand, the hand you extend

to everyone who blesses you with presence (Lk 7:36-50)

May yours be the gift of reverence for all created things.

May you face bravely and enthusiastically the responsibility

to preserve and care for the beauty of the earth Sir 42:15-43:33)

May the wellsprings of compassion flow deep within you,

until you can taste the tears of your brothers and sisters (2 Cor 1:3-7)

May you awake each morning with thank you on your lips

and in your heart, recognizing that all is gift, that all is blessing (Ps 138:1)

May your friendship with God be strong and healthy.

May that love be both a comfort and a challenge as you struggle

to find your way in the new year (Jn 21:15-19)

May your spirit be open and perceptive in discovering the will of God for you.

May your prayer be that of wisdom, guidance, and a deeper understanding

of God's way for you (Lk1:26-38)

May your life this new year be a living legacy to your God.

 

Joyce Rupp 'May I Have This Dance?' Ave Maria Press

 

Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Pope Francis’ message for 2015 World Day of the Sick



Pope Francis’ message for 2015 World Day of the Sick

(Vatican Radio) The theme of Pope Francis’s message for the World Day of Sick being celebrated on 11 February 2015 is “I was eyes to the blind and feet to the lame,” taken from the book of Job.

Please find below the English translation of the full text of the

Pope’s message:

Sapientia Cordis
“I was eyes to the blind, and feet to the lame”
(Job 29:15)

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

On this, the twenty-third World Day of the Sick, begun by Saint John Paul II, I turn to all of you who are burdened by illness and are united in various ways to the flesh of the suffering Christ, as well as to you, professionals and volunteers in the field of health care.
This year’s theme invites us to reflect on a phrase from the Book of Job: “I was eyes to the blind, and feet to the lame” (Job 29:15).  I would like to consider this phrase from the perspective of “sapientia cordis” – the wisdom of the heart.

1.            This “wisdom” is no theoretical, abstract knowledge, the product of reasoning.  Rather, it is, as Saint James describes it in his Letter, “pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insincerity” (3:17).  It is a way of seeing things infused by the Holy Spirit in the minds and the hearts of those who are sensitive to the sufferings of their brothers and sisters and who can see in them the image of God.  So let us take up the prayer of the Psalmist: “Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Ps 90:12).  This “sapientia cordis”, which is a gift of God, is a compendium of the fruits of the World Day of the Sick.

2.            Wisdom of the heart means serving our brothers and sisters.  Job’s words: “I was eyes to the blind, and feet to the lame”, point to the service which this just man, who enjoyed a certain authority and a position of importance amongst the elders of his city, offered to those in need.  His moral grandeur found expression in the help he gave to the poor who sought his help and in his care for orphans and widows (Job 29:12-13).

Today too, how many Christians show, not by their words but by lives rooted in a genuine faith, that they are “eyes to the blind” and “feet to the lame”!  They are close to the sick in need of constant care and help in washing, dressing and eating.  This service, especially when it is protracted, can become tiring and burdensome.  It is relatively easy to help someone for a few days but it is difficult to look after a person for months or even years, in some cases when he or she is no longer capable of expressing gratitude.  And yet, what a great path of sanctification this is!  In those difficult moments we can rely in a special way on the closeness of the Lord, and we become a special means of support for the Church’s mission.

3.            Wisdom of the heart means being with our brothers and sisters.  Time spent with the sick is holy time.  It is a way of praising God who conforms us to the image of his Son, who “came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Mt 20:28).  Jesus himself said: “I am among you as one who serves” (Lk 22:27).

With lively faith let us ask the Holy Spirit to grant us the grace to appreciate the value of our often unspoken willingness to spend time with these sisters and brothers who, thanks to our closeness and affection, feel more loved and comforted.  How great a lie, on the other hand, lurks behind certain phrases which so insist on the importance of “quality of life” that they make people think that lives affected by grave illness are not worth living!

4.            Wisdom of the heart means going forth from ourselves towards our brothers and sisters.  Occasionally our world forgets the special value of time spent at the bedside of the sick, since we are in such a rush; caught up as we are in a frenzy of doing, of producing, we forget about giving ourselves freely, taking care of others, being responsible for others.  Behind this attitude there is often a lukewarm faith which has forgotten the Lord’s words: “You did it unto me’ (Mt 25:40).
For this reason, I would like once again to stress “the absolute priority of ‘going forth from ourselves toward our brothers and sisters’ as one of the two great commandments which ground every moral norm and as the clearest sign for discerning spiritual growth in response to God’s completely free gift” (Evangelii Gaudium, 179).  The missionary nature of the Church is the wellspring of an “effective charity and a compassion which understands, assists and promotes” (ibid).

5.            Wisdom of the heart means showing solidarity with our brothers and sisters while not judging them.  Charity takes time.  Time to care for the sick and time to visit them.  Time to be at their side like Job’s friends: “And they sat with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and no one spoke a word to him, for they saw that his suffering was very great” (Job 2:13).  Yet Job’s friends harboured a judgement against him: they thought that Job’s misfortune was a punishment from God for his sins.  True charity is a sharing which does not judge, which does not demand the conversion of others; it is free of that false humility which, deep down, seeks praise and is self-satisfied about whatever good it does.

Job’s experience of suffering finds its genuine response only in the cross of Jesus, the supreme act of God’s solidarity with us, completely free and abounding in mercy.  This response of love to the drama of human pain, especially innocent suffering, remains for ever impressed on the body of the risen Christ; his glorious wounds are a scandal for faith but also the proof of faith (cf. Homily for the Canonization of John XXIII and John Paul II, 27 April 2014).

Even when illness, loneliness and inability make it hard for us to reach out to others, the experience of suffering can become a privileged means of transmitting grace and a source for gaining and growing in sapientia cordis.  We come to understand how Job, at the end of his experience, could say to God: “I had heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you” (42:5).  People immersed in the mystery of suffering and pain, when they accept these in faith, can themselves become living witnesses of a faith capable of embracing suffering, even without being able to understand its full meaning.

6.            I entrust this World Day of the Sick to the maternal protection of Mary, who conceived and gave birth to Wisdom incarnate: Jesus Christ, our Lord.
O Mary, Seat of Wisdom, intercede as our Mother for all the sick and for those who care for them!  Grant that, through our service of our suffering neighbours, and through the experience of suffering itself, we may receive and cultivate true wisdom of heart!
With this prayer for all of you, I impart my Apostolic Blessing.

NEWS.VA | © Copyright News.va & all Vatican media sources