Hello again, dear reader!
Hello everyone. Did you catch the three days of summer this week? It was great while it lasted, but I feel sure there will be more. Last weekend there were more than a hundred people at Mass, the first time for eighteen months. Hopefully more of you will feel less anxious about coming, and perhaps we’ll reach 200 by the end of the year.
It has been good to celebrate weekday Mass with a congregation again. We will try the same again this week, with Exposition on Tuesday at 7.00pm followed by 7.30pm Mass, (the Exultation of the Holy Cross) then Mass again on Wednesday and Thursday mornings at 9.15am. The following week there will be no weekday services.
I offered Mass for Tom Kerry, and Harold White on his birthday, for the repose of the soul of Mike Clayton, and the Kilcoyne Family.
We will introduce RE lessons on Thursdays gradually. The first important task is to identify any children in years 3 or 4 (a double intake) who want to make their first Holy Communion, and they will take priority. Please would parents of these young people find an enrolment form at the back of church, fill it in, and hand it to Fr Elder before half term at the latest. When we know the numbers we can arrange for suitable instruction to be given.
Prayers are asked for the repose of the soul of Mrs Nuala Scarisbrick, a co-founder of Life, who died this week aged 82. She and her husband Jack, both faithful Catholics, co-founded Life, a pregnancy support charity based on the principles of Catholic Social teaching. Life helps more than 60,000 people a year as they face pregnancy or pregnancy loss. Her legacy is tens of thousands of people here today who otherwise would have been aborted. One of our parishioners attended a rally in London last week to demonstrate against abortion, and was most moved to meet people testifying about their own lives or that of their child, saved by the intervention of people like Nuala. The threats and catcalls of the pro-abortionists were horrifying to experience.
Notice is given by the Diocesan Mission Secretary that a course begins this month with person-to-person classes on Thursday mornings at St Columba’s, Plas Newton, Chester. There is also an online option, with an in-person seminar in Wythenshawe or Birkenhead. This is an excellent course for anyone who would like to learn more about our faith, or lead in a school or parish. Please register in advance – information is available from firstname.lastname@example.org PTO
Anyone can better understand the bible from start to finish – Old and New Testaments – with this free of charge world famous course delivered online by Mauro Iannicelli. It starts on Wednesday 29 September 2021. There are eight Wednesday sessions (7 – 8.40pm). For information and registration: www.comeandsee.org Three parishioners saw the course previously and enthusiastically recommend it.
Our readings on the twenty-fourth weekend in Ordinary Time continue with the half-way point in Mark’s gospel, where Jesus asks ‘Who do people say that I am?’ Peter says ‘You are the Christ’. Jesus then says he is to suffer, to die, and to rise again, and anyone who wishes to follow him must renounce himself, take up his cross, and follow him. Isaiah the prophet faces a similar future but is undaunted because God will come to his help. In between, St James writes about good works as the surest sign of faith.
It is hoped that the various people who had kindly undertaken positions of responsibility in the parish are reading this, and can soon find the freedom to return to weekly Mass and hopefully be willing to take us their chosen duties again. We think of the coffee mornings, the children coming to religious lessons, the contact group, as well as servers, readers, musicians, ministers of the eucharist, cleaners etcetera. If people enquire about confession, they can receive the sacrament on request any time, and if enough people want the regular confession times restored then we will find a way that is hygienic and safe.
Next weekend Mass will be celebrated for us by Fr John Joyce. He used to be parish priest in Knutsford, but is now retired and lives in Appleton. I know that you will give him your customary welcome and give him whatever help he needs.