News and reflections for Sunday 14th February 2021 - the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time.
It seems with the continuing lockdown we are all on a sort of retreat this Lent. But time slips by. Let us start with good heart by making a structure for Lent now (something we can keep up) and sticking to it. Suggestions as to what to do below and in following newsletters.
Lockdown & Easter:
After some consultation, in view of the uncertainty as to Covid, I propose not to open our churches for the time being, but if we are allowed and it seems right for us to open our churches for Holy Week and Easter, I will review this decision in March.
This Sunday’s Scripture:
Lepers were excluded from the community and lived outside the towns. Jesus reaches out to the lepers to cure them, and so re-integrates them into the community. He wants to reach out to us and heal anything that divides us from others, from God, or even within ourselves.
Repent and Believe the Good News!
Ash Wednesday is this Wednesday.
It is a day of fasting and abstinence (see below). The Mass, with the blessing of ashes, will be broadcast for 11am. Small cards will be signed with the ashes, put in a plastic sachet, and left for collection from the boxes. Keep this card with you as a sign that you wish to ‘Repent and believe the Good News’. We are asked to make the day special.
Fasting and Abstinence:
On Ash Wednesday all those who are between 16 years and 65 years should abstain from meat and fast from any surplus food and drink and eat very plainly. In doing so we show our intention in Lent to get our lives back under control, rather than living subjected to our bodily wants. It is also an act of love and appreciation to a God who gave so much for us, and a sign of repentance for our wrongs. People over 65 years and young children are excused the duty; but we should do what we can voluntarily and as a loving gift to God. Fr. Philip
Opportunities for devotion and charity in Lent:
Broadcasted weekday Mass as advertised.
Broadcasted Stations of the Cross, Friday 3.00pm.
Broadcasted parish penitential service (to be arranged on the 5th Sunday of Lent).
CAFOD Family Fast Day Friday 26th February.
Stations of the Cross:
Stations of the Cross are an excellent devotion for Lent. Stations will be broadcasted each week of Lent at 3.00pm Friday. We accompany Jesus on his final journey to the cross. They remind us how much Jesus suffered for us, so that we can have life in the future, and therefore how much God must love us. Note although the stations are broadcasted, those without the internet are asked to make the Stations themselves.
Here is a leaflet on the Stations of the Cross:
Ordinary People & the Holy Spirit No. 5:
The Holy Spirit is often the overlooked person of the Trinity. Yet He is the power behind the church. Without the Spirit the church decays and people lose heart. All recent Popes have begged ordinary Catholics to be more open to the Spirit.
Testimony to the work of the Holy Spirit:
This week, we hear about the Holy Spirit’s Gift of Love:
Have You Experienced the Holy Spirit? Would you be prepared to share it? Please write to Marian at the Parish Office or e-mail it. We need to share our faith experiences to encourage each other on our faith journey.
In time of isolation:
We offer the following personal prayer support:
Fr Alf Parker will talk or pray with you on this number 015395 33145
Or you can leave a prayer request as an answerphone message on this number 01524 734816
Or leave your name and number if you would like someone to phone you back later that day.
Please pray for the soul of Nick Drake-Lee, whose cremation service will take place this Monday. A funeral Mass will be celebrated later, when conditions allow us to gather.
Please also pray for Maria Lennon and Winefride Bordewicz, both of Grange, who died recently. The crematorium service for Winefride is due to take place on the 26th February, and that of Maria on the 3rd March. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed rest in peace.
Notices and Adverts:
Living Laudato Si: Your Parish and Your Planet
A Zoom retreats in 2021: 12th-16th March and 16th-19th April
This will be led from Boarbank Hall, Cumbria.
For more information, please email Sr Margaret Atkins on email@example.com.
Here is the full newsletter: