Weekend Message June 19
Jesus Christ is alive – and he is living with us! The love of God overwhelms us when we reflect that, if one man has died for all, then all should be dead; and the reason why he died for all was so that we should live no longer for ourselves, but for him who died and was raised to live for us. So writes St. Paul to the people of Corinth (as we will hear in Sunday’s second reading).
Our Lord is present among us for a purpose: that we should live for him. St. Paul expresses this in a typically striking manner: that we are to become the Body of Christ. St. Teresa of Avila draws out the implications of this: “Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which he looks with compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are his body. Christ has no body now on earth but yours.”
St. Paul had criticized the people of Corinth for the way that the celebrated the Lord’s Supper, because in doing so they were looking after their own interests, and ignoring the needs even of other members of their own Christian community. In doing so, he tells them, it is no longer the Lord’s Supper that they are eating. This behaviour was not fitting for members of the Body of Christ.
Our bodies have many different parts, all working together properly (or we become ill), and it is important for us to look after every bit. Every part of the body is important for the smooth functioning of the whole. I have been blessed with good eyesight, but have always been deaf and have a poor sense of smell. So it is a temptation for me to look after my eyes, but not worry so much about hearing. But, St. Paul says, if the body were only an eye, how could it hear? I should attend to my ears, so that I can at least hear some things.
We are the Body of Christ, and each one of us is a different part of it, called to carry out our own work as part of the whole Body. So none of us should feel that our own work for the whole Body does not matter – no matter who we are or what we are able to do, it is important, because it is for the whole body.
The most important works will always be those which build up the Body of Christ. There are very many ways in which we might do this. Most important, perhaps, is being aware of the needs of other people, whether they be family members, neighbours, members of our parish, or people we meet in the street or at the shops. Being more aware, we can do more of these little acts of kindness which are so important for raising morale.
Within the Church community, we all know how so many people have been doing the Lord’s work, providing food for the poor who need to access the foodbank, giving lifts to others to come to Mass or to go to the doctor or the shops. There are so many ways in which we can help each other. One very obvious way, over the past few months, has been the small band of volunteers in our two parishes who have enabled the Churches to be open for public worship by acting as stewards and cleaners. As the summer progresses, and the regulations may enable us to open the Church more often for Mass or other public worship, it may be that we still need to continue with our current regime of advanced booking, stewarding at Mass, and cleaning and sanitizing afterwards. If we are to open more often, we will most probably need more volunteers – we cannot expect the same small band of very cheerful helpers to do it all every day.
If you are willing to join the band of stewards/cleaners, please let me know. If we are to restart Saturday evening Mass in Lutterworth, or another weekday Mass at Narborough, we would certainly need more volunteers.
**Important notice concerning car parking**
Please park in the Church car parks whenever possible. If that is not possible, for whatever reason, please ensure that you are not causing an obstruction of the roadway or driveways to properties, and please remember that homeowners may wish to park outside their own homes. Please exercise Christian Charity when parking your car.
Booking Arrangements for next weekend:
At St. Pius X, Narborough:
You may book by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: (0116) – 2863676
at the following times on the following days:
· between 7pm and 8pm on Monday 21st June;
· between 7pm and 8pm on Tuesday 22nd;
· between 7pm and 8pm on Friday 25th.
Times of Mass next weekend:
· 10am Saturday 26th;
· 10am Sunday 27th;
· 10am Monday 28th.
At Our Lady of Victories & St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth:
Please ring 079 0113 4564 on the following days, and at these times. It is not possible to leave a message outside these times:
· Monday 21st June between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
· Wednesday 23rd between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
· Friday 25th between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
Times of Mass next Sunday and Tuesday:
· 11am on Sunday 27th;
· 10.30am Tuesday 29th.
Arrangements for attending Church for Mass and other services: For the time being – until we receive further information – these arrangements are still in force. The anticipated further relaxation does not occur on 21st June, so we stay with our current guidelines for at least another four weeks. Masks or face coverings will be required for those attending Mass (except for those exempted from wearing them); it is necessary for those attending Church to sanitize their hands on entering; and all need to keep social distance from each other (unless they are members of the same household or family). Young persons under the age of sixteen years, and all persons who suffer from physical or mental disability, must be accompanied at all times by a responsible adult. We are not allowed to kneel down while in Church: please stand or sit as appropriate, but please do not kneel. All who attend (except for the cleaners who remain behind to sanitize the building) should leave immediately after Mass has finished, not stopping in Church to talk to other people; and please also maintain a social distance as you follow others out of Church, avoiding any ‘congregating’ in the porch, or the lobby, or at the back of Church. I am very grateful to the stewards & cleaners who support the public celebration of Mass.
Please remember that it will be essential to book a place at Mass on every occasion that you wish to attend. It is not permitted to book for every Sunday, or even for a number of weeks. Please also remember to bring a mask to wear when coming to Mass.
At Narborough the intentions for Mass this week will be: Saturday (19th June) Private Intention; Sunday (20th June) Gerry d’Araujo RIP; Monday (21st June) Members of the Corr family. Wednesday Dennis & Teresa Taylor RIP; Thursday People of the Parishes; Friday Lesley Hudson RIP. Next weekend Saturday (26th June) Mary Smith RIP; Sunday (27th June) Monica Okoye RIP; Monday (28th June) Letty Brewitt RIP.
At Lutterworth the intentions for Mass will be: Sunday (20th June) Michael Thomas O’Rourke RIP; Tuesday (22nd June) Holy Souls; Next Sunday (27th June) People of the Parish; Next Tuesday (29th June) Holy Souls.
Doreen Sullivan RIP: Requiem Mass will be celebrated at St. Pius X Narboough on Tuesday 29th June at 11.30am. Numbers who can attend are still restricted according to the capacity of the Church.
Prayers for the living and the dead:
Please pray for Doreen Sullivan, Sister Mary O’Riordan, Father Anthony Colebrook, Canon Owen O’Neill, and all who have died recently.
Please also pray for Jane Bolsover, Suzanne Foxon, Jim Oxley, Beulah Blomfield, Tom McDermott, Freda Williams, Joseph Armeni, Dave Knapper, Teresa Maugham, Elizabeth Fullerton, Mary Dunne, and Juanita Zaman and for all who are ill.
Please let me know of any others who have died, or anyone who is ill and asks for prayers.
Banns of Marriage: please pray for Cathy Mears and Ben Hebborn who intend to marry at St. Pius X on 10th July. We pray that they will be blessed with a long and happy marriage. If anyone knows of any reason why they should not marry, please tell Father John without delay.
First Holy Communion: We hope to begin preparation for First Confession and First Holy Communion in September. I am very grateful to those who have already indicated that they wish to be included. Candidates should be in Year 3 at school from September (or older). Please let me have any names and contact details so that a group can be organized.
Confirmation: Bishop Patrick is willing to start administering the sacrament of Confirmation. I am grateful to those who have already said they wish to be confirmed. Are there any others who would like to join the group? Please let me have any names and contact details. Candidates for Confirmation should be in secondary education (or older) in September this year.
This weekend there will be a second collection for ‘Day for Life’.
Next weekend there will be a second collection for Peter’s pence.
Planned Giving Envelopes (Our Lady of Victories & St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth): The new boxes of envelopes started in April If you require your box, please ring June (01455 – 553730) or Ashley (01455 – 553493) or email Father John.
Planned Giving Envelopes (St. Pius X, Narborough): The new boxes of envelopes started in April. They are available from the sacristy in Church, or email Father John.
Standing Orders: I will provide the parish Bank details to anyone who would like to donate by Standing Order or similar electronic means – many of you already do so (and I am very grateful indeed). I can provide standing order mandates for anyone who wishes – please just ask.
Gift Aid: I have copies of the form to complete, so if you are a taxpayer and would like the tax paid on your contributions to be given to the parish, please ask me for a form.
Recycling Textiles: At the moment the firm are no longer collecting in the Leicester area and has no plans to restart collections here. If anyone knows of any other organization willing to collect clothes and other textiles in our area, please let me know.
Reminders from previous weeks:
Caritas – Diocese of Nottingham: On Saturday 22ndMay we launched the diocesan Caritas organisation, with an online liturgy showcasing the work of volunteers around the diocese and hosted by the team at the Briars. ‘Caritas Diocese of Nottingham’ will help us to answer Christ’s call to mission, through giving practical expression to His love in our neighbourhoods and the promotion of fraternity, justice, peace, and the care of creation here in our local communities and in the wider world in which we live. ‘Caritas – Diocese of Nottingham’ has been launched at a most providential time, as we emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic and seek to rebuild our lives and look to the future. It is my hope and prayer that ‘Caritas Diocese of Nottingham’ will help many people, Catholics and non-Catholics alike, all people of goodwill, to play an important part in the building up of God’s Kingdom here on earth.
There are a number of resources now available following the launch:
- A 10-minute Youtube interview in which Paul Bodenham discusses the work of Caritas with Madeleine Strezynski, our new diocesan director of communications.
- A 15-page prospectus highlighting the work of Caritas planned up to 2024, which explains the six ‘ministries’ through which Caritas can support parish initiatives.
- A listening campaign, Lend an Ear, which, together with the online survey launched in April, will help us address the needs and opportunities created by the pandemic
- A network of Friends in Caritas through which volunteers in our parishes can find advice and support for new outreach projects.
With best wishes to you all, and assuring you all of my prayers, Father John