Weekend message Oct 10
The woes of the hospitality sector during this pandemic – woes which will increase if there are further lockdowns and curfews imposed around the country – is a reminder to us how important it is for us to eat together (whether in our own homes or in pubs, bars, cafés, and restaurants) and that we are used to preparing the food we eat. We can (and do) eat some food as it comes to us off the tree or plant or bush – apples, pears, plums, blackberries, tomatoes, lettuce, and so on – but most of our food is prepared: we bake bread, make soup, cook meat and vegetables, brew tea.
So much of the food we eat has gone through many hands before it reaches the table. The farmer (or sometimes perhaps the hunter), then through some sort of processing, then to the shopkeeper, probably via some intervening merchants, and then probably further cooked at home or elsewhere, before being served on the plate for eating. There are many people for us to thank for our food, at the same time as we thank God for it.
This is expressed in the prayers offered at Mass at the preparation of the gifts. “Blessed are you, Lord God of all creation, for through your goodness we have received this bread we offer you, fruit of the earth and work of human hands; it will become for us the bread of life” – and then a very similar prayer over the wine.
So we offer bread and wine, which are the fruit of co-operation between God and human beings: God, who has made all things and, in particular, the sun and rain to make things grow, and the great many people who have had a hand in producing the bread and the wine – from tiling the ground and sowing the seed and planting the vines which produced the grapes, right up to selling the finished products.
Sunday’s Gospel story about the King inviting people to a feast is a parable about God who invites us all to share food and drink with him. Those invited turned down the invitation – they all had other things to do: in other words, they were too wrapped up in themselves and their own desires to understand what good things that God had prepared for them. Others turned up, but were not wearing the appropriate clothes: they had not bothered to make their own preparations for such a great occasion, by failing to recognize and respond to the needs of other people.
When the pandemic is under control, and we can return to celebrating together again, hopefully we will also be more aware of the needs of those who are unable to celebrate with us, because they don’t have enough food to eat.
Many thanks to all of you who contributed last weekend to CAFOD – giving some poor people in other countries some food to eat and water to drink.
The corporal works of mercy: feed the hungry (and thirsty), clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the sick, visit the imprisoned, give shelter to the homeless, bury the dead. The spiritual works of mercy: counsel the doubtful, instruct the ignorant, admonish the sinner, comfort the afflicted, forgive offences, bear wrongs patiently, and pray for the living and for the dead.
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, and certainly before the start of December, of any candidates for these sacraments.
Last weekend 78 people attended St. Pius X Narborough for Mass between the three celebrations (Saturday, Sunday, Monday) and over 40 people attended Mass at Our Lady of Victories and St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth between the three celebrations (Saturday evening, Sunday, Tuesday). We have been advised to stop celebrating the Saturday evening Mass at Our Lady of Victories, so from this weekend the only Mass on a Saturday will be 10am at St. Pius X, Narborough (which will be the Sunday Mass).
Each week we hope to be able to accommodate everyone who wishes to attend Church. However, I would ask that you all use the booking system, and do so in good time, so that if there is pressure due to the number of persons who wish to attend, it may still be possible to find a way to accommodate everyone. Because I will be on holiday during the week beginning 19th October, please note that you will need to book this week for attendance at Mass at St. Pius X Narborough on Saturday 24th October, Sunday 25th October, and Monday 26th October, as well as the usual bookings for Saturday 17th, Sunday 18th, and Monday 19th October.
Readers: Thank you to those who have already volunteered to join our Readers’ Rota at St. Pius X, Narborough. More volunteers are needed, so if you are willing please let me know, and also state which Mass(es) you will be attending.
This week I will celebrate Mass in public at Our Lady of Victories and St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth, at 5,30pm on Saturday, at 11am on Sunday, and at 10.30am on Tuesday; at St. Pius X Narborough at 10am on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday; and in private (the doors will not be open) at about 9am on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. The intentions of these celebrations will be Saturday (10th October) 10am Winifred Foot RIP; Sunday (11th October) 10am Father Terry Fellows RIP; Monday (12th October) 10am Johnny Morrissey RIP; Tuesday Ethel Jones RIP; Wednesday People of the Parishes (Mass in time of pandemic); Thursday Frank Scanlon RIP. Next weekend Saturday (17th October) 10am People of the Parish; Sunday (18th October) 10am Alan Gower RIP; Monday (19th October) 10am private intention. I will celebrate Mass at Our Lady of Victories & St. Alphonsus, Lutterworth, for Paul Luke RIP on Sunday 25th October, and for Francis D’Mello RIP on Sunday 1st November.
For the foreseeable future I will not be able to celebrate Mass on Friday morning because I will be teaching students at Oscott College from 8.45am until 12.10pm. There are 10 students in 1st year at the College, beginning training to become priests. One of them has been sponsored by this Diocese.
Booking Arrangements for next weekend:
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 Our Lady of Victories & St. Alphonsus:
Please ring 079 0113 4564 on the following days, and at these times:
Monday 12th October between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
Wednesday 14th October between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
Friday 16th October between 9.30am and 10.30am or between 6pm and 7pm
Times of Mass next weekend:
- 11am on Sunday 18th October;
- 10.30am on Tuesday 20th October.
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 for the next two weekends:
- between 6pm and 7pm on Monday 12th October;
- between 6pm and 7pm on Tuesday 13th October;
- between 5pm and 6pm on Friday 16th October.
Times of Mass next weekend:
- 10am on Saturday 17th October;
- 10am on Sunday 18th October;
- 10am on Monday 19th October.
Times of Mass the following weekend:
- 10am on Saturday 24th October;
- 10am on Sunday 25th October;
- 10am on Monday 26th October.
Holy Communion at Home for the Housebound: We are now permitted to administer the sacrament of Holy Communion to those at home, but under very strict conditions. If anyone who is housebound would like Holy Communion, please let me know and I will try to make suitable arrangements.
Wedding: Colette Frances Teeling and Richard James Elsley intend to marry at St. Pius X, Narborough on Saturday 17th October. It is wonderful to be able to celebrate some good news! Please do keep Colette and Richard in your prayers as they prepare for married life together.
If you know of any reason why they should not marry, please inform Father John immediately.
Please pray for Joseph Armeni, Dave Knapper, Michael Maloney, Teresa Maugham, Debbie Bourke,Elizabeth Fullerton, Mary Dunne, Ranjit Mann, Juanita Zaman, (all parishioners or relatives of parishioners), and Father Michael Horrax (retired priest of this Diocese) who are seriously ill; and for Father Terry Fellows, Dennis Mansell, Hugh Mellor, Sheila Knight, and all who have died recently. Please let me know of any others who have died, or anyone who is ill and asks for prayers.
During October we are invited to contribute to special causes: Special collection boxes will be available in the Church porches for the weekend of 10th and 11th October for Peter’s Pence; 17th and 18th October for the support of the Holy Places in Palestine; and 24th and 25th October for the support of the Church’s missionary activity. If you are unable to come to Church but wish to contribute to any of these causes, please send your contribution to Father John.
Parish Magazine: Mrs Sasse has kindly worked hard on producing a new edition of the Magazine for our two parishes. In the circumstances, producing hard copies would not be sensible, but she is happy to send it by email to anyone who would like a copy. Please contact her on [email protected]. I’m sure that she would also be very grateful for ‘copy’ to go into a future edition of the magazine.
Recycling Textiles: At the moment the firm are no longer collecting in the Leicester area and have no plans to restart collections. 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:
The ‘Sunday Obligation’ remains suspended until further notice. The Bishops remind us that people who have been ‘shielding’, or who are caring for anyone who is extremely vulnerable, should not attend Church. Those who are ‘vulnerable’, including those who are over 70 years of age, should think carefully before attending, to make sure that they feel they can do so safely. Children younger than 16 years old, and persons who are physically disabled or who have learning difficulties, must not attend Church unless they are accompanied by a responsible adult, who will be expected to look after them and ensure that safe practice is maintained. Toilets will not normally be open.
When Attending Mass in any Catholic Church:
Face masks must be worn. When you arrive at Mass, a steward will check that you have pre-booked. You will be asked to sanitize your hands in the porch, and to wear your face mask. There is no holy water in the porch, and there will be no newsletter to take into Church. A newsletter will be available, but if you take one you will be asked to ensure that you take it away with you after Mass.
If you have brought an offering for the parish collection, please put it into the box which will be available in the porch. The collection will not be taken during Mass in the usual way. There will also be a box in the porch for items for the foodbank or for Mary’s Meals, and during October, an extra box for the special collection we have been asked to take.
A steward will show you where you can sit. Places are marked on the benches or chairs, to ensure that all persons keep a safe ‘social distance’. Couples from the same household may occupy a single place. Families may sit together. If the Church is full to (Covid related) capacity, the steward may need to keep certain benches available for families.
Holy Communion will be distributed at the usual time during Mass. The host must be received in the hand. There will be no ‘dialogue’ at that time. The chalice cannot be shared. Those receiving Holy Communion are requested to maintain the social distance in the main aisle waiting to receive; and to come up to the line marked on the floor of the Church.
At the end of Mass, please do not stop in the porch. If you wish to talk to anyone, please wait until you are outside the Church building. This is to avoid causing an obstruction for those wishing to leave.
Contributions to the parish funds: I know that many of you who used the planned giving envelopes to make your contributions would like to continue to do so. The boxes of envelopes are available for those who use them. If you would like your box of envelopes, please let me know and I can produce it for you.
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.
With best wishes to you all, and assuring you all of my prayers, Father John