Third Sunday of Easter
Here is our parish Newsletter for the coming week.
I do hope you continue to keep well and are in good spirits. Social distancing and lockdown can be challenging for us all especially during this spell of sunny weather, but we are assured it is having a positive effect on curbing the spread of the coronavirus, so I continue to encourage you to follow our Government’s instructions to Stay at Home, Protect the NHS and Save Lives. Please encourage others to do the same.
I do hope some of you who have access to the internet, were able to join Cardinal Vincent Nichols in prayer during the Mass from Westminster Cathedral last Thursday which he offered for the sick and all frontline workers in the NHS and social care. This will be a weekly celebration.
As you are aware a large number of our parishioners do not have access to the internet so please share the information in this Newsletter with them if you can. Perhaps you could give them a ring.
Please take care of yourselves and try to pray each day. Strive to read your bible, where you will find comfort and solace in God’s Word. Pray for each other and please pray for me.
Keep an eye out for one another in keeping with Government advice, remembering that some parishioners are self isolating.
May the Risen Lord bless you all
Mass to view on line
Bishop Robert Barron or Fr. Steve Grunow from Word on Fire, continue to celebrate daily Mass from the bishop’s private chapel which is available from 15.15 UK time.
More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.
I continue to celebrate Mass privately every day and as I suspect it will be quite some time before we are able to reopen our churches I propose to fulfil during this coming week the following Mass Intentions which remained unsaid when we had to close our doors:
- Monday – Terry McDonough
- Tuesday – Brian Quigley
- Wednesday – Billy Knowles
- Thursday – The sick, NHS & Care Workers
- Friday – Flo Rouse
- Saturday – Fr “P’s” Intentions
- Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners
As you are unable to celebrate Mass with me, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:
Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.
Masses for the Sick and their Families, NHS Front-Line workers and those working in Social Care
Every Thursday one of our Bishops will be celebrating a special evening Mass for the sick, their families, NHS staff, and those working in Social Care.
Acknowledging the community solidarity behind the ‘Clap for our Carers’ initiative that has seen millions applauding NHS staff and health workers from their doors and windows for the past four weeks, Cardinal Nichols said: “…what we want to do, is add to that public applause, the practice of public prayer, encouraging Catholics to follow Mass and pray before the 8pm applause.” “We applaud, but we pray and we pray fervently for them. May God bless them all,” he concludes.
Not only is the celebration of Mass in Church suspended at this time, but the celebration of all other Sacraments and sacramentals is suspended until such time as we are allowed to reopen our churches.
In the current situation the Bishops have announced the following instruction: All baptisms, confirmations, first Holy Communions and weddings are to be deferred until congregations are allowed to gather again.
Funeral Masses and Funeral Services are not permitted in our churches. A simple funeral service may be celebrated at the graveside or at the crematorium where numbers attending are limited to 10 people. These Local Authority restrictions are made in the light of the latest guidance from the Federation of Burial and Cremation Authorities, the Institute of Cemetery and Crematorium Management and central Government. The funeral director will guide you in this regard.
Please keep in your prayers this week
- all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital.
- all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time and,
- Kathleen Mullen who has died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the soul of your servant whom you have called from this life. May she be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united. Amen.” A private Funeral Service for Kathleen took place last week.
A Prayer for this Current Time
Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we pray to you through Christ the healer for those who suffer from the Coronavirus across the world. We pray for all who reach out to those who mourn the loss of each and every person who has died as a result of contracting the disease.
Give wisdom to our policymakers, skill to healthcare professionals and researchers, comfort to those in distress and calm to us all in these days of uncertainty and distress. This we ask in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors
Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch.
In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.
Your weekly offering is our sole source of income
As we face another period during which our churches will have to remain closed, I would ask those of you who may feel able, in what I am aware may be difficult times for us all financially, to consider contributing your weekly offering by bank transfer directly into the parish account. It will help us meet our ongoing financial commitments. I am very grateful to those of you who have already chosen to do so.
Alternatively, you might put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church once we can reopen and celebrate Mass and socialise together.
The details for bank transfers
St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984
St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453
An ear to hear
As part of the pastoral care the Diocese offers during this COVID-19 lockdown, a number of qualified counsellors and listeners have generously made themselves available to anyone who may be troubled by the negative effects of the situation.
These can be contacted through St Mary’s Cathedral Listening Service on 0191 232 6953 and the Northumberland Listening Service on 07732 980740.
Asylum Seekers Food Donations Update
The Diocesan Justice and Peace Refugee Project has had to temporarily close its doors and can no longer accept food donations. They have established a mechanism for sending out monthly ‘digital vouchers’ to the mobile phones of the most destitute asylum seekers which allow them to purchase goods to the value of £30.00 in nominated supermarkets.
This way of operating is expensive, so if you can support this scheme you may make a donation by Bank transfer to HSBC DHN Destitute Asylum Fund; Sort code: 40-34-18; Account number: 52854058.