4th Sunday of Lent
In St Peter’s Basilica in Rome last Friday, 25 March 2022, Pope Francis consecrated Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Here is an extract from the Prayer of Consecration which you may like to make your own in the weeks ahead:
“Mother of mercy, you never cease to guide us to Jesus, the Prince of Peace, yet we have strayed from that path of peace. We have forgotten the lesson learned from the tragedies of the last century, the sacrifice of the millions who fell in two world wars. We have disregarded the commitments we made as a community of nations. We have betrayed peoples’ dreams of peace and the hopes of the young. We grew sick with greed, we thought only of our own nations and their interests, we grew indifferent and caught up in our selfish needs and concerns. We chose to ignore God, to be satisfied with our illusions, to grow arrogant and aggressive, to suppress innocent lives and to stockpile weapons. We stopped being our neighbour’s keepers and stewards of our common home. We have ravaged the garden of the earth with war and by our sins we have broken the heart of our heavenly Father, who desires us to be brothers and sisters. We grew indifferent to everyone and everything except ourselves. Now with shame we cry out: Forgive us, Lord!
Holy Mother, amid the misery of our sinfulness, amid our struggles and weaknesses, amid the mystery of iniquity that is evil and war, you remind us that God never abandons us, but continues to look upon us with love, ever ready to forgive us and raise us up to new life. By God’s gracious will, you are ever with us; even in the most troubled moments of our history, you are there to guide us with tender love.
We now turn to you at this dark hour, help us and grant us your comfort. In you we place our trust. We are confident that, especially in moments of trial, you will not be deaf to our supplication and will come to our aid.”
If you wish to support Cafod’s Humanitarian Appeal for the Ukraine, donations may be left in the boxes at both entrances to St. Patrick’s Church or put through the letterbox of St. Patrick’s presbytery. Please mark your envelope Ukrainian Appeal. For security reasons, envelopes should not be put through the letterbox of St. Alban’s Presbytery. Alternatively you may donate directly to Cafod.
On our own doorstep, the Diocesan Refugee Project seek our continuing help to enable them to support over 400 asylum seekers. They try to provide them all with a bag of food and those who are destitute also receive a supermarket voucher. Donations of sugar, biscuits, tinned fish in oil, tins of tomatoes and chick peas may be left on the table to your right as you enter the front of St. Patrick’s Church or on any table if you enter by the rear door. They are particularly in need of toiletries and shampoo. Please note: baked beans and tinned meat are not required.
Cases of Covid-19 continue to rise in our region. The latest figures from the Office of National Statistics cite 1 in 15 people currently have Covid in England. Many of us will be aware of someone who has the virus or is self isolating, you may even be one of them. Please pray that they will make a full recovery. This is particularly important, as more cases of “long Covid” are beginning to emerge. The Public Health message is still to act cautiously and to consider wearing a face covering especially in an indoor environment when we are in the company of people we do not usually mix with. Please respond in a positive way for the sake of each other’s well-being.
May God bless us and continue to watch over us, keeping us safe from harm.
Mass to view on line
With the exception of Sunday and Tuesday, Fr. Patterson will celebrate Mass privately during the week for the following Intentions. Face coverings should be worn when attending Church, unless you are medically exempt.
- Monday – Brenda Gibbon
- Tuesday: 10.00 in St. Patrick’s Church – LDM Ogilvie and Towers families
- Wednesday – In Thanksgiving (KC)
- Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
- Friday -Brian Quigley
- Saturday -Fr. Patterson’s intentions
- Sunday: 10.00 in St. Patrick’s Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners
When you are unable to celebrate Mass with us 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 are 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
- all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Brian Gilmore, Pat Donald and Brida Clay.
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.
A time to pray
Please join together in prayer for the 164,454 people who have died in our country from the coronavirus. (Friday’s figure)
Gracious God, as we remember before you the thousands who have died from the coronavirus, surround us and all who mourn with your compassion. Be gentle with us in our grief, protect us from despair and give us grace to persevere and face the future with hope. We make this prayer in Jesus Christ our risen Lord. Amen.
A Prayer for the Ukraine
Lord God, hold the people of Ukraine deep in your heart. Protect them from violence, from political gamesmanship, from being used and abused. Give the nations of the world the courage and the wisdom to stand up for justice and the courage to care generously. Take from us those traits that see us pursuing our own needs and wants before those of others. Teach us how to live in love and dignity and respect, following your ways. We ask this in your name and for your sake. Amen
The Lenten Journey
Father Denis McBride C.Ss.R. is leading a free online retreat during Lent.
A video will be added to the Redemptorist website every Sunday, and they will be available throughout the Lenten season, so you can re-watch them at your leisure.
The Diocesan Vicariate for Faith and Mission has produced the final part of a booklet of Lenten reflections which you may find of value during Lent. Unfortunately the booklet is too large to make printed copies available, but it is accessible online.
Bishop Robert Barron asks, “Do you want to grow in your faith this Lent?”
For several months during the early stages of the pandemic, we were able to offer those of you who have access to the internet, the opportunity to engage in a variety of video presentations by Bishop Robert Barron.
During Lent this year, Word on Fire offer the opportunity to engage in more talks and videos with the ability to access those videos you have watched in the past and it is free of charge.
Bishop Barron’s Sunday Sermon
Each week Bishop Barron offers a Sunday sermon.
Cafod’s Humanitarian Appeal for the Ukraine.
Fr. Patterson is grateful for donations received for this appeal during the course of the week totalling £210.00. Donations may be left in the boxes at both entrances to St. Patrick’s Church – please mark your envelope Ukrainian Appeal. Alternatively you may choose to donate directly to Cafod.
Volunteers are invited to help with the cleaning of St. Patrick’s Church for Easter on Friday, 8th April at 6pm. Please enter by the Church Street Entrance.
Prayer and Reconciliation
There will be a time for private prayer before the Blessed Sacrament on Friday, 1st April from 10am – 10:30am with the opportunity of Sacramental confession for those who wish. If you choose to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation, a face covering must be worn. Please use the Church Street entrance which will be open at 9.50am.
Your Offertory contributions from 1st April, 2022
For the past two years, as a result of the pandemic, we have been left with a large number of unclaimed sets of weekly offering envelopes which came at a considerable cost to our parishes. With the uncertainties of the year ahead, we will only be issuing envelopes for the coming financial year to those of you who are in the parish gift aid scheme and are not already contributing by standing order or bankers order.
As non gift aid envelopes no longer need to be individually recorded, we ask that those of you who are not in the gift aid scheme, might bring your offering in an envelope of your own or simply place your offering in the box provided in the church as “loose plate.” Alternatively you may take a set of envelopes from St. Patrick’s Church dating back to 2020/21 which may be used. You do not have to use the number that was allocated to you in the past—any box will do.
Many of you during the past two years have chosen to make your offering by standing order or by bank transfer and we are most grateful to you for doing so. It is hoped that you will continue to make your offering in this way, which saves on administration costs. For those of you who gift aid your offering, tax can still be reclaimed from the standing order method of contributing. We invite more of you to consider making your offering in this way whether you are in the gift aid scheme or not. The bank details you require are printed below.
If you are a tax payer and are not a member of the parish gift aid scheme please consider joining the scheme, it costs you nothing and the parish benefits by being able to reclaim the tax you have already paid on your offering. All that is required, is for you to complete a simple form which does not involve you disclosing any personal financial information and is held securely by the Diocesan Finance Office.
To obtain a form, or for more information, please email St. Patrick’s Gift Aid organiser at email@example.com.
For the time being, enquiries concerning the Gift Aid scheme for St. Albans Church should be directed to Fr. Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The details for bank transfers/standing orders 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
Diocesan Covid Protocols are still in place in our churches.
Despite “national” guidelines recently issued by the Bishops of England and Wales, we still await an update from Bishop Robert relating to our Diocesan protocols which supersede the national guidelines. So we request that you maintain the “status quo” when it comes to attending St. Patrick’s Church. Please continue to wear a face covering in the Church unless you are medically exempt. You are also asked to maintain social distancing from others in your bench, unless you are from the same household or bubble. Sanitising your hands is also good practice.
If you have Covid symptoms or feel unwell, please stay at home until you feel better.
There is no longer a need to provide Test and Trace details, nor to “log in” using a QR code.
If you are still hesitant about attending Church, you are under no obligation to do so.
St. Alban’s Church – feedback.
Fr. Patterson would like to thank those parishioners who were able to attend the Gathering in the parish room during which he spoke of the level of help and support that would be needed if we are to be able to reopen St. Alban’s Church. He explained the nature of the various roles which must be filled and the commitment that would be necessary to fulfil them. Those present were invited to go away and reflect on whether or not they could make the necessary commitment involved and to discuss our needs with others in the hope of being able to establish a sufficient bank of volunteers to enable the reopening of the Church.
Fr. Patterson looks forward to receiving your offers of help and support by 31st March. Please contact him at email@example.com or telephone 0191 495 2277. Alternatively you may contact Terry and Christine Harbron by telephoning 0191 469 8697. Please avoid telephoning either number after 6pm or at weekends. Emails are welcome anytime.
St. Patrick’s Church Heating
The heating failed last Sunday due to the motor which drives the whole system seizing. It cannot be repaired. The purchase and installation of a new motor, wiring loom and the recommissioning of the system is estimated to cost somewhere in the region of £2,000.
Please get vaccinated
Cardinal Vincent Nichols has echoed the call encouraging people to take up Covid vaccinations and boosters when offered by the NHS. “The call ‘Get vaccinated! Get boosted!’ is more and more pressing.”
ZOE Covid weekly update – COVID smashes record with 330,000 daily cases on 2 year anniversary
On the ZOE COVID Study’s 2 year anniversary, Professor Tim Spector reflects on what this time has meant to us all and asks everyone to take a moment to think about all those affected by the pandemic. As well as the latest data updates, Tim shares some interesting research on the potential effects reducing symptomatic isolation might have.
In a separate blog, the updated symptoms of Omicron are discussed.
Data from the Office of National statistics may also be of interest to you.
Parish News by Email
If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to email Fr. Patterson at firstname.lastname@example.org and they will be added to our contact list.