Parish newsletter, 14 March 2021
6.30pm: Fr Paul Sanders Rec Dec
Sunday Fourth of Lent PMB Page 166
8.30am: Anastasia Gomes (welfare)
10am: Eddi Intention
11.30am: TR Family
10am: Pino Oriani RIP
Wednesday St Patrick
10.00am: Miss Rudge RIP
Thursday St Cyril
10am: PB Spec Int
Friday St Joseph
10am: Dec’d Parishioner Ellis
10am: Doris Family Dec Rel
Fifth Sunday of Lent
8.30am: Cheryl Adams Rec Dec
10am: Fr Paul Sanders Rec Dec
11.30am: Priest int
St John tells us that when the Light came into the world some people chose to reject it because they were evil. That’s pretty basic, we think to ourselves. We of course are in the category of those who reject. This is our main problem. The Good News is that God is always faithful despite our infidelities. On a brighter note the first word of today’s antiphon at the beginning of Mass is “REJOICE” in Latin, “laetare”. This Sunday has always been “Laetare Sunday.” One of the valid reasons for coming to Mass is to remind ourselves that we need to rejoice a bit more often. There are reasons for this!
First Reading Israel’s sinfulness brings destruction on Jerusalem and years of exile. The Lord’s intervention, through the Persian king, Cyrus, not a Jew, incidentally, brings an end to the exile and offers the possibility of coming home and the construction of a new temple. Please note that the priests are heavily criticised. We must try to do better !
Second Reading We are God’s work of art, though marred by sin which seems to have such a hold on us. The Letter to the Ephesians should be our constant reading when we are sad of feeling down. The first half tells us what God has done for us. Everything is the free gift of his grace. He’s got us out of the mess by dying and rising from the dead. The second half of the letter tells us what we should be doing with our lives. My experience after 40 years on the road is that many people simply do not know how to live because they have not encountered God. If you are God’s work of art then remember that everyone else is God’s work of art, not just your other half! We should, with those thoughts in mind, live accordingly. God does not make rubbish. Away with those thoughts of low self esteem. Get a life
The Gospel Nicodemus – the name means innocent blood (bible names are always hugely significant) – is a strangely attractive, and even fascinating character. May be the compelling part of his make-up is that we can readily identify with his struggles, his doubts as well as, we might like to think, with his energy. He is the original cautious enquirer. He is a man of spiritual perception, highly educated and an expert of the Law and everything connected with the Jewish religion and its belief system. But he wants more and is clearly unsettled and inwardly aware of his discontent. He would have been aware of the forceful defiance of Jesus when he cleanses the temple, thereby annoying the religious establishment. That’s probably the reason for his clandestine nocturnal meeting with Jesus. Both, it should be noted, had their followers. Both Nicodemus and Jesus were teachers. During the meeting Jesus explains that people often prefer the darkness to the light even though the light has come into the world. Jesus explains the need to be born again and accept the Spirit of God. Jesus explains that the Father loved the world so much that he sent his only Son not to condemn the world but to save the world. This really is the heart of the Gospel. Nicodemus probably becomes a follower but not openly! When I get to Heaven, or, rather, if I get to heaven (see the first reading) . I HOPE TO MEET Nicodemus in person and find out just what he was playing at.
Fr Paul Sanders Requiem Mass on Monday at 12 noon conducted by Bishop Paul at Holy Cross, Carshalton. Reception of the body Sunday 4.30pm. See parish website
Justice and Peace and Examination of Conscience We are called to believe in the victory of Christ, to be people of hope. We see signs of the kingdom all around us, small victories over evil, there to console and strengthen us and importantly to protect us from despair. While on this earth we live in the temple because we are the temple, which is why we are called to purify ourselves to keep the temple pure.. Self – examination is the foundation for all progress. If we fight injustice and prejudice and get angry as Jesus did we must start by looking at ourselves, our own injustice and bigotry and hardness of heart. We constantly try to over come our prejudices. Honesty is often painful and we fail if we rely on our own power. Christ is with us and he will teach us the truth and set us free.
Reflection Jesus is the light of the world. We should not be afraid of his light. We should welcome it and rejoice in it. Compared to his light, other lights are mere flares in the night. Lord Jesus, radiant light of the world, guide our steps in the way of truth and goodness, and lead us through the shadows of this world to your kingdom of unfailing light
CAFOD Four million children are dying in the Yemen. In the first quarter of 2019, 3.4 million died of hunger. Abdella is shattered, exhausted, physically devastated, but he must keep walking. Abdella lives in an extremely remote and mountainous part of Ethiopia. He spends nearly all his time collecting water just to keep his family alive. He has no time to live the life he wants. “I am wasting my life. I am a young man; I should be doing something else. Meet Abdella CAFOD website and share his journey. Please help by making a donation. Envelopes available back of church . You can make a CAFOD donation any time you want as the box will be there for a long time
The Chosen.tv I suggest you watch “The Chosen tv” What it means to meet Christ and be changed – be different. There is an amazing episode about Nicodemus – his name means “innocent blood” - his dealings with Mary Magdalen, and his visit to Jesus under cover of darkness.