25th Sunday of the Year
With a surge in the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 in our region you will be aware that the Government, at the request of the Local Authorities, launched a new series of measures last Friday for us to follow in an attempt to curb the transmission of the virus.
The underlying nature of the restrictions is for us all to limit our social contact with those who do not live in our household as much as possible.
Why, you may ask. Gateshead Council’s data has identified that there is an increased rate of transmission in our own homes, in hospitality venues and through grassroot sports. The Council’s aim is to do everything they can to protect our most vulnerable people, to keep businesses open and our children in school.
We will all have our own views on what is happening and what is being asked of us and whilst it is easy to apportion blame, as Christian people, should we not accept that we have a personal responsibly to follow the rules and guidelines for the sake of the common good?
I recall these words of Professor Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer for England who said on 25th June that “Covid-19 is still in general circulation. If we do not follow social distancing guidance then cases will rise again. It is absolutely critical people stick to the guidance that has been given.” He has been proven to be correct – many people have chosen to ignore social distancing and we have seen a surge in the number of cases locally, nationally and in other countries too.
We have also heard how “the worried well,” who seek a Covid test without having Covid symptoms, are putting an added strain on an already over stretched Test and Trace system. If we are worried about catching the virus to the extent that we want to seek a test for our peace of mind, which is understandable as no-one likes having to live with anxiety and uncertainty, why do we not seem to be as worried about catching the virus when it comes to observing social distancing?
We have been given another opportunity by the Government to change our social habits for the well-being of one another. Let us respond in a positive way to do all we can to try to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus in our own locality.
Please look after each other by observing social distancing and local restrictions.
Pray for one another and please pray for me
May God bless you all.
Mass to view on line
With the exception of Tuesday and Thursday, when there is a public Mass in St. Patrick’s Church, I will continue to celebrate Mass privately each day. These Intentions will be remembered this week.
- Monday – Mgt Miller, Adam & Les Jackson & Peter Stout
- Tuesday: 10.00 in St. Patrick’s Church – Dorothy Diamond
- Wednesday: Pat Donald
- Thursday: 18.30 in St. Patrick’s Church – Sheila Robinson
- Friday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
- Saturday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
- Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners
When 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
Please keep in your prayers this week:
- all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital and,
- all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Dorothy Diamond, Michael and Iris Hollywood and Sheila Robinson
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.
Should I come to church?
If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.
Some people, including those aged 70 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to stay at home as much as possible and if they do go out, to take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household.
If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.
If you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19, you MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and contact the online 111 service to arrange for testing. You must not come to Church.
It is also important to note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection
What to expect when returning to Church
The Archdiocese of Liverpool have put together a video which gives us an idea of what to expect when you can return to Church.
Mass in St. Patrick’s Church and the new local Restrictions
It had been hoped that we might have been able to offer a Mass in St. Patrick’s Church on a Sunday from this weekend. However, in the light of the substantial rise in the number of coronavirus cases in our locality and the local restrictions imposed upon us, I do not think it prudent to introduce an additional (Sunday) Mass in St. Patrick’s until the local situation improves. Sunday obligation is still suspended.
We will continue to celebrate Mass on Tuesdays at 10.00 and Thursdays at 18.30, unless additional measures are imposed which may prevent us from doing so.
As you are aware, St. Patrick’s Church has been risked assessed and is deemed to be Covid-19 secure. Strict protocols are in place for your health and safety.
However, the new local Restrictions do affect us to the extent that they emphasise that we should not socialise outside of the Church after Mass but disperse immediately. I urge those of you who come to Mass to follow this advice and in doing so set an example for others to follow.
News from our School
Mrs Telfer, will be retiring in October after 25 years at our school where she has dedicated her time and energy to helping to care for so many children and their families. To celebrate her time there, if you have a story to share or wish to send a message, please contact the school office (0191 469 3251).
Your generous Offerings are greatly appreciated
Fr. Patterson continues to be so grateful to those parishioners who, in these financially challenging times, are able to make their weekly offering by bank transfer directly into the parish accounts and to those who have sent cheques.
He is also appreciative of those parishioners who have dropped their weekly offering envelopes through the presbytery letterbox This all helps to meet our day to day financial commitments.
However, for security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.
If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions, the parish can reclaim the tax on your offering should you wish to make a bank transfer. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.
If you choose to send a cheque please make it payable to the appropriate Account name below or you might wish to continue to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church once we can reopen our doors.
The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:
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
The following Government Information may also be of value to you: