Newsletter – 5th week of Lent 2022

Dear Parishioners

Today in the Readings at Mass we have a sense of the Past and the Future. Letting the past be the past and the future be the future. In the First Reading the Jewish people have been in exile for years. By now, nostalgia has taken over. They look back wistfully to their ancestors, the liberation from bondage in Egypt, the grand exodus, the manna from heaven, the “good old days.” But the Lord says through Isaiah, “Remember not the former things…Look, Behold, I’m doing a new thing…a new way in the desert, new springs of water for the thirsty.” God was not only in their past but also in their future. Let the past be the past and the future be the future. In the second reading, St. Paul knows his past as a persecutor of the Gospel, but now he has been touched by grace and given a new mission as an apostle of that same Gospel. He writes, “I give no thought to what lies behind but push on to what is ahead.” Let the past be the past and the future be the future. The Gospel too is also about letting the past be the past and the future be the future. The woman caught in adultery was guilty, ashamed, and repentant. She knew her past. The whole town knew her past. But when Jesus brought her pardon, He gave her a future. Isn’t that what the forgiveness of God is all about, to be restored to dignity, to be healed and made whole again, to be given a new future? 

The challenge of these readings and this Gospel to us living in our modern world today is not to ignore sin and wrongdoing around us. Our world and each of us need repentance. We should repent of course, but then not fix our eyes on yesterday’s sin but on today’s forgiveness and tomorrows hope. Today’s gospel teaches us that there is Someone more interested in restoring our life than in taking it. There is Someone more interested in healing us than in increasing our hurt. There is Someone more interested in our future than in our past. His name is Jesus. This Tuesday 5th April we shall host one of the Deanery Lenten Reconciliation Services here at St. Mary’s. This will replace our normal Tuesday evening liturgies and will take place in church from 7-8pm. I have invited three priests from our local deanery to come to hear confessions that evening during this time of silent prayer and reflection before the Blessed Sacrament. The service will conclude with Benediction at 7.45 pm. 

CAFOD – Lent 2022 – We still have some CAFOD Lent envelopes in a basket in the entrance of the church for you to make donations to their work during Lent. These envelopes can be placed in the collection plate at all Sunday Masses until Easter Sunday. 

With prayer and best wishes for each of you as we journey closer to Holy Week, 

Your parish priest and friend, 

Fr Jonathan

——————————————————————————————————————-

IMPORTANT Newsletters – Our Parish Newsletters are available to be viewed and downloaded from our Parish website. 

The online version will not include the Sunday Message

The Sunday Message and Newsletter will be available to download but this will be password protected – the password can be obtained from the Parish.

——————————————————————————————————————-

2022 3rd April – Newsletter – Download

2022 3rd April – Newsletter (Including Sunday Message – Password Protected)– Download

2022 3rd April – LOOK – (Password Protected)– Download