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Mass of the Lord’s Supper - Holy Thursday 1st April - 7.30pm
Stations of the Cross - Good Friday 2nd April - 10.30am
Passion of the Lord - Good Friday 2nd April - 3pm
Easter Vigil - Holy Saturday 3rd April - 7.30pm
Easter Sunday 4th April - Monastery - 7am, Parish Church - 9am and Latin Mass10.30am
2nd Sunday of Easter 2020
We are living through an unusual period of history. There is a good chance we will never see anything like this again in our lifetimes. Or so we hope.
In this context today’s liturgical readings offer us profound reflections on what it means to be a Catholic.
As Jesus greets his disciples in the Gospel soon after his resurrection his first words are: Peace be with you! There have been such catastrophic changes forced upon us, in these past few weeks, that our peace of mind is in jeopardy, but Christ says to us simply and directly:
Peace be with you!
And Luke in the first reading from the Acts of the Apostles reminds us of the beauty and wonder attaching to membership of the Church community:
The whole community remained faithful to the teaching of the apostles, to the community, to the breaking of bread and to the prayers.
As a parish community we are being denied access to the Breaking of Bread, due to the rules of social distancing. But Luke suggests we keep in mind:
The many miracles and signs which have made a deep impression on everyone. Can we take a moment to think of the miracles and signs which have touched our lives, and which continue to move us even in this most difficult of circumstances.
Luke continues, reminding us that the early community went as a body to the Temple every day. This is being denied us, even to be able to do it once a week, and we feel the loss!
St Paul, who accompanied Luke on parts of his missionary journey through the middle east, has strong words of encouragement, reminding us, first of all that God is to be blessed, for giving us the possibility of new life.
This is a cause of great joy for us, he goes on, and in one of the most moving passages in all the Scriptures he concludes:
You did not see Him, yet you love Him; and still without seeing Him, you are already filled with a joy so glorious that it cannot be described, because you believe; and you are sure of the end to which your faith looks forward, that is, the salvation of our souls.
Thomas, of course, in the Gospel doubts. He refuses to believe unless he sees and touches the risen Lord.
In our current crisis, it may indeed, at times, be difficult to see God in the tragedies unfolding in our families, in our community and in our world.
Being confined to the monastery in these days, glimpses of the joy so glorious it cannot be described, has come in the form of messages from many parishioners. Are you ok? Can we do anything to help? Would you like us to do some shopping for you? Bring you a meal?
At the same time I would like to ask: Are you ok? Can we do anything to help you or your family?
It is in times like these where we are denied the breaking of bread, as a community, that we can, as ever, remain faithful to prayers, and to the needs of the community.
Fr Bernard OSB PP
THE LORD IS RISEN, ALELUIA, ALLELUIA!
I know we have all been in lockdown, businesses, employment, education, relations with extended family, and much much more has been affected in ways never exprienced before. Social distancing has become the norm. And we are seeing dramatic changes to the levels of Coronavirus spreading.
But I am also conscious that in such a time fo crisis, I have been very quiet. I went to visit the GP 3 weeks ago with chest pains and ended up in an ambulance off to hospital. Fortunately my heart was ok so I was sent back home, to then spend the next few weeks fighting an infection. It's second point of attack was the lump on my neck, which was removed, and then followed weeks of treatment for the bug. I have had difficulty putting two and two together, have had trouble eating anything, and have needed a stick to help me move about.
I tell you all this, because I feel guilty about not being available to you, even on the internet.
The good news is: I am on the mend. The Great News is: Christ is risen from the dead!
We are living through extremelty dificult times, our Governments is providing good leadership. We are in a much better position than most countries in this crisis, and although there is a long time to go, we seem to be in good shape.
Usually though Project Compassion, and Peter's Pence we are invited to consider those in more dificult situations. Unfortunately the pressures on our families at present are very great.
But let us, at the every least, hold each other, our community, our nation and our world in prayer, conscious of the wonderful gift of life in this world ever being renewed by God through the Risen Christ, present in the Holy Spirit.
THE LORD IS RISEN, ALELUIA, ALLELUIA!
Mass of the Lord’s Supper - Holy Thursday - 7.30pm
Stations of the Cross - Good Friday - 10.30am
Passion of the Lord - Good Friday - 3pm
Easter Vigil - Holy Saturday - 7.30pm
Easter Sunday - Monastery - 7am, Parish Church - 9am and Latin Mass 4.30pm