The Second Sunday of Christmas
With the promising news this week of the approval of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, might I take this opportunity to wish you a New Year filled with hope!
At the same time we have been reminded by our Government that we must not drop our guard as the new variant of the coronavirus is spreading rapidly through the country putting a great strain on the NHS and resulting in more people dying.
As such, might I encourage you all to follow the Tier 4 Restrictions which were placed on our region last Thursday especially the 2 metre social distancing rule.
The basic message of these restrictions is “you must not leave or be outside of your home or garden except where you have a ‘reasonable excuse.’ These are listed on the Government’s website.
Attending communal worship is deemed to be a ‘reasonable excuse,’ to leave your home, but the Restrictions stress that “we must not mingle with anyone outside of our household or support bubble and should maintain strict social distancing at all times.” Places of Worship may remain open for communal worship so long as they continue to follow the established guidelines they already have in place.
With the agreement of our stewards, Mass in St. Patrick’s Church will be celebrated on Tuesdays at 10.00 am and on Sundays at 10.30 am. You must reserve a place for Sunday Mass. Information on what you need to do is on page 2 of the Newsletter.
However, in the light of the Tier 4 Restrictions, I would urge you to give serious consideration as to whether or not you should be attending Church at this present time especially if you are in any of the vulnerable categories and you should not attend Church if you are deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable.
We are all becoming tired of yet more restrictions and the next few months will continue to challenge us. Whilst we hope the vaccine will gradually help to relieve the situation, we must remain ever watchful and not drop our guard – even those of you who have already received your first “jab.”
May God continue to bless us all and keep us safe now and throughout the coming year
Mass to view on line over the Christmas period
Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 am. Mass may also be viewed any time later.
Mass Intentions for the coming week
- Monday – Pat McDonough
- Tuesday: 10.00 in Church – In Thanksgiving (MS)
- Wednesday – Carol Belton
- Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
- Friday -Paul Hughes
- Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
- Sunday: 10.30 in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – booking is necessary
When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me in Church, 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.
In case you were not aware, a parish priest is obliged to celebrate Mass for the “Intentions of the Parishioners” every Sunday or Holyday, which prevents him from fulfilling personal intentions on those occasions.
Please keep in your prayers this week:
- all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
- Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
- all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially
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? Tier 4 update
If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising under Tier 4 Restrictions that you should stay at home as much as possible, except to go outdoors for exercise or to attend health appointments 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 be especially careful to follow the rules and minimise their contact with others.
If you fall into either of these categories, you need to consider the wisdom of attending Mass.
Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.
You must not come to Church……..if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, change or a 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 arrange for testing.
Please 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.
Mass in St. Patrick’s Church during this coming week:
Thanks to the generosity of our volunteer stewards whose presence is necessary if we are able to open the St. Patrick’s Church for Mass we will be able to return to our pre-Christmas programme namely:
- Tuesdays at 10.00 am- no booking is necessary
- Sundays, at 10.30 am- for which booking is necessary
To reserve a place for Mass on Sunday, 10th January, please telephone:
on either Wednesday, 6th January between 10 am and 12 pm or on Friday, 8th January between 5.30 pm and 7 pm.
This number will be unavailable outside of these booking times.
Bookings can’t be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.
You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 4 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench.
For Masses where booking is not required please bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place them in the box in Church.
Parish finances and offerings
Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your Christmas Offerings.
He continues to be grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping their weekly offering envelopes through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial commitments of our churches. Thank you for your Christmas Offerings too.
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 and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.
Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.
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