Weekend message May 8
The Solemnity of the Ascension: The disciples had witnessed the destruction of their hopes for salvation in this world in the death of Jesus, and experienced the despair of total failure; then they had witnessed the Resurrection and had learned that Jesus promised them something far greater than they had imagined. He spent time with them, talking to them, eating with them, explaining to them.
Now he was suddenly taken from their sight. Did this mean that their renewed hope, founded on their new experience and understanding, was also doomed to failure? Then they hear the angels saying that they should not be looking where Jesus has gone, but that he will return in the same way as he has departed from them (Acts 1:11).
What do the angels mean by this? First of all, that if the disciples are wanting the experience of Jesus ‘in the flesh’ to continue, they are doomed to failure. This is not how it will be – so stop looking for him. But he will return ‘in the same way’; and that means that he must still be human as well as divine, even though he cannot be seen as such ‘in this world’.
We know this only by faith – and there can be no substitute for faith. This reminds us that this life, this world we experience, is only transitory. It will come to an end. Here we have ‘no abiding city’. We cannot and must not attempt to create our own salvation in this world, for it is coming to an end. To have faith is to live by and for the future, which we cannot see.
But Jesus has promised that he will return, and when he does he will be as he was when he left the disciples and ascended to be with his Father and our Father. He has taken with him his human life, all that he experienced and all that he achieved, so that it will never be lost. When he comes again, all human life and all human history – including all of our lives and experiences – will be gathered together in his life, which he has presented to his heavenly Father and which has been glorified.
He has gone away from us, so that we might have the opportunity to live with his life, as the one who died and was raised to new life. In the Holy Spirit which was poured out upon the world, in the Church which he founded and which is the Body of the Risen Christ, in the Word which we hear in the Scriptures, in the sacraments which we celebrate and receive, in the practical love which we show to our neighbours, our families and friends, and to the strangers who benefit in any way from signs of our Christian love, Jesus himself has continued to be with us, so that we may benefit from his life.
Jesus has willed to live on in all that we do and all that we experience, in our joys and in our sorrows, in our hopes and in our fears and anxieties, in our strength and in our weakness, in our life and in our death. In all of this Jesus has promised that he will be with us and we can be with him – for he has promised that he will come again in the same way as he ascended from us. We pray that, when he returns, he will find that he has been in our life, so that in us he has been kind, selfless, patient, loving, faithful – just as when he walked the earth with the disciples.
Celebrating the Solemnity of the Ascension: I am very grateful to Father John Joe Maloney who will celebrate Mass at Our Lady of Victories Lutterworth at 10.30am. I will celebrate Mass at St. Pius X Narborough at 10am and at 7pm if people wish.
Booking Arrangements for Ascension Day & next weekend:
At St. Pius X, Narborough:
You may book by email: [email protected] or by phone: (0116) – 2863676
at the following times on the following days:
- between 7pm and 8pm on Monday 10th May;
- between 7pm and 8pm on Tuesday 11th.
- between 7pm and 8pm on Friday 14th.
Times of Mass Ascension Day & next weekend:
- 10am & 7pm Thursday 13th May (Ascension Day)
- 10am Saturday 15th;
- 10am Sunday 16th;
- 10am Monday 17th.
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 10th May between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
- Wednesday 12th between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
- Friday 14th between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
Times of Mass Ascension Day & next Sunday and Tuesday:
- 10.30am Thursday 13th May (Ascension Day)
- 11am on Sunday 16th;
- 10.30am Tuesday 18th.
Arrangements for attending Church for Mass and other services: 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 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 (8th May) Welfare of Monica Teeling; Sunday (9th May) Doris & Peter Rampton RIP; Monday (10th May) Deceased members of the Feurhuber family. Wednesday Gordon & Bridie Bryan RIP; Thursday 10am People of the Parishes; Thursday 7pm Deceased family & friends of Rosemarie Baxter; Friday Father Anthony Colebrook RIP. Next weekend Saturday (15th May) Winifred Foot RIP; Sunday (16th May) Brendan Hewitt; Monday (17th May) Father Simon Nolan RIP.
At Lutterworth the intentions for Mass will be: Ascension Day (13th May) Private Intention; next Sunday (16th May) The People of the Parishes; Tuesday (18th May) John McManus RIP.
Prayers for the living and the dead: please pray for Father Anthony Colebrook, Canon Owen O’Neill, Andrew Madden, Prince Philip, Debbie Bourke, Father James Earley, Deacon Robin Pollard (of the parish of St. Peter’s, Hinckley), Susan Moore, Bob Dorward, Ranjit Mann, Maria Olga dos Santos, and all who have died recently.
Please also pray for 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.
We would be most grateful if the following paragraph could be displayed in your newsletter over the next couple of weeks regarding the celebration to be led by Leicestershire Active Catholic Youth for our young people. A poster for display on your facebook page or parish website will also be forwarded to you after the weekend.
LACY AND PENTECOST! Leicestershire Active Catholic Youth extend a warm invitation to all young people, their families and friends to share a Celebration with them on the Feast of Pentecost, Sunday 23rd May, via Zoom at 7.00 p.m. Fr. Simon Gillespie will lead the celebration. Perhaps you are preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation and would like to join together to share more thoughts about the Holy Spirit giving the disciples the power to proclaim God’s wonderful word. An opportunity to hear young people’s thoughts, connecting and sharing discipleship through energy and enthusiasm as we recognise that Youth is a flame! Youth is a fire! Interactive discussion, Prayers, Readings, Reflection and Music will take place. Contact [email protected] or [email protected]. All young people under the age of 18 present on Zoom should be accompanied by an adult.
Many thanks for your continued support of LACY. We are most grateful.
Information from the Diocese:
Neophytes Celebration – Normally on the 7th Sunday of Easter: those who have been received into the Church at Easter (Neophytes) are invited to a Mass of thanksgiving at the Cathedral with Bishop Patrick. This year Bishop Patrick will lead a half an hour online service of celebration for Neophytes, please join him at 3:00pm on Sunday 16th May on his YouTube Channel: www.youtube.com/BishopPatrickMcKinney
Thy Kingdom Come – Thy Kingdom Come is a global prayer wave between the feasts of Ascension (13th May) and Pentecost (23rd May). It is a time when Christians around the world are invited to pray for more people to know Jesus and answer the call to be his disciple. There are a collection of Catholic resources you can use on your own or with others in this time including: morning and evening prayer, praying with Our Lady resources, live streamed night prayer, resources to pray for those you know who aren’t followers of Christ, and more! Further information here: www.thykingdomcome.global/resources/resources-catholic-church. Resources for children and families here: https://www.thykingdomcome.global/cheekypandas
Being a Missionary Disciple Talks – You are called to be a missionary disciple… but what does that mean? The first talk exploring being a missionary disciple is on Thursday 13th May at 7pm ‘The Ascension & the Great Commission’ will be given by Canon Christopher Thomas (General Secretary of the Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales). This talk will explore the importance of the Ascension and how we can live out Jesus’ final instructions to us. The second talk ‘Pentecost & Mission’ will be given by Pippa Baker (A Catholic Missionary, Speaker & Musician) on Wednesday 19th May at 7pm. This talk will examine the significance of Pentecost for us and how the Holy Spirit equips us for mission in our every day lives. To register visit: www.dioceseofnottingham.uk
Planned Giving Envelopes (Our Lady of Victories & St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth): The new boxes of envelopes start 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 start 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.
Reminders from previous weeks:
First Confession and Holy Communion: Candidates must be in Year 3 at school (or above). Confirmation: Candidates must be in secondary school (or later). Please let me know as soon as possible about any candidates for these sacraments. So far I have received four applications for First Confession and Holy Communion, and six applications for Confirmation. I have obtained the books for use in these preparations; we will see how we may be able to start preparation for these sacraments. Obviously no face to face preparation can possibly begin until April at the earliest.
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.
With best wishes to you all, and assuring you all of my prayers, Father John