Hello to you all as we enter the season of Lent.
Welcome back to Mass those who have been away shielding. It created some disappointment for those who tried to book a place after all the seats had been taken – not enough to justify restoring the 9am mass, unfortunately. This weekend Bishop Mark has written us a Pastoral Letter in which he gently reinforces the truth that Mass is very important. On Monday he will have been a bishop for eleven years. Ash Wednesday is usually the day when people come to church to receive ashes, an age-old symbol of repentance.
This year I will sprinkle the ashes on each individual on the way out of church at the end of mass on Saturday and Sunday. I hope you thought of some sort of penance to commit to. Maybe ‘doing without’ at present isn’t such a good idea, but other forms of self-discipline such as keeping silent would be good, especially when we hear a story about someone we don’t like! Radio Five Live had a phone-in today asking ‘Is it OK to be optimistic’. Isn’t it strange how a world that no longer believes in sin can feel guilty (not OK) about so many things? But then we live in strange times.
CAFOD Family Fast Day is this week. There are no special envelopes, but next week you can put a donation in an ordinary envelope marked ‘Cafod’ and put it in the collection plate. It would be a shame if the needy people in the world missed out on the £900-or-so pounds we usually give. It is also easy to give online directly. Go to www.cafod.org.uk or by post to 55 Westminster Bridge Road, London SE1 7JB.
I had a call from the sales manager of the Catholic papers pleading with me to say how you could all have the (together) Universe and Catholic Times sent to your home by post, just £25 for three months, £99 for a year, or £55 for a year’s digital copy. That is an awful lot of material and very good value, so if you have the money to spare you would get a bargain and help to keep these venerable Catholic papers from going under. Please go to www.thecatholicuniverse.com or call them on 0161 820 5722.
Lymm Churches Together: There is another zoomed meeting this Wednesday 24 February at 7.00pm. – ask the secretary for contact details if you haven’t already got them – firstname.lastname@example.org
I have offered Mass this week for the repose of the souls of Rita Andrus and Sean O’Cleirigh a special intention (Kelly), and for Marie Clowes on her birthday.
Thank you for all the planned giving donations. Keep safe and warm.
Fr Tony Elder