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Download this week’s Newsletter here: Newsletter Third Sunday of Lent – Sunday 24th March 2019 Year C
My sisters and brothers in Christ,
Today, third Sunday of Lent, the evangelical reading contains Jesus’ call to penance and conversion. Or, rather, a demand for a change in our lives.
In Evangelical language “To convert to” means to change not only our innermost attitude but our exterior style, too. It is one of the mostly employed parables in the Gospel. Remember that, before the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, saint John the Baptist summarized his advocating with the same saying: “Preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins” (Mark 1:4). And, immediately after, Jesus preaching can be summarized with these words: “Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15).
Yet, today’s reading has some characteristics of its own that request faithful attention and an adequate answer. It can be said that the first part, with the two historic references (the Galileans’ blood shed by Pilate and the crumbling of the Siloh tower), contains a threat. It is impossible to call it any other way!: we deplore the two misfortunes —regretted and moaned at the time— but Jesus Christ, most seriously, says to all of us: —”Unless you change your ways, you will all perish as they did” (Luke 13:5).
This shows us two basic things. In the first place, the total seriousness of the Christian commitment. And, secondly, if we do not respect it, as God commands, the possibility of our death, not in this world but, much worse, in the other one: the eternal doom. These two deaths in our text are nothing but examples of another death, that cannot be compared to the first one.
Each one of us will eventually find out how to face this demand of personal change. Nobody is excluded. But if this may worry us, the second part should comfort us, instead. The “gardener”, who is Jesus, begs the owner of the vineyard, his Father, to wait another year. And, in the meanwhile, He will do whatever possible (and the impossible, by dying for us) so that the vineyard may bear fruit. That is, we change our ways! This is the message of Lent. Let us, therefore, take it seriously. The saints —though late in his life saint Ignatius of Loyola is one instance— do change by God’s grace while inciting us to change too.
Our Faith is like the fig tree … when life gets difficult we can’t just give up like the Orchard owner. We need to be patient and we need to take care of our spiritual life, through the Sacraments, prayer and scripture, in order for our Faith to be fruitful.
with Blessings Father Marcin Drabik
Why is Lent 46 days and not 40? Because each Sunday is considered a Feast Day as we celebrate the death and Resurrection of Christ in the Holy Eucharist. The Gospel on the 40 days that Jesus spends in the wilderness reveals to us that when we fast and pray to draw ourselves closer to Christ, the evil one will always try to tempt us away. But like Jesus we can always use our Faith to defend ourselves against temptation.
Keep up with what’s Happening in our Parish over this coming Year
Scroll through to see all the events happening from the 24th March 2019 till the 30th April 2019
Or Go to our Parish Events Diary and search a specific date or event here http://stswithuns.org.uk/events/
Our Parish Cinema during March 2019 – All films are shown in St Swithun’s church hall following Friday evening mass at 7:00pm. Film’s start generally around 8:10pm with tea and coffee provided. ALL ARE WELCOME ! Here’s the current list – click on the links to see more details on the films being show themselves.
|Date||Time||Film Title||Location||Post Link||Pic|
|Friday 8th March 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
1) In the Beginning
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 1: In the Beginning – Noah, Abraham thru Jacob, Israel begins
Noah tells of the Creation story and Fall while aboard the ark; Abrahamic covenant; the Battle of the Vale of Siddim; Hagar and Ismael; birth of Isaac; Abraham is tested; Sodom and Gomorrah; Moses learns of his roots, kills a soldier, and flees Egypt.
|Friday 15th March 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||While in exile, Moses is told by God at the Burning Bush that he will free the Israelites from slavery. Moses returns to Egypt and, with the help of ten devastating plagues and the miracle of the parting of the Red Sea, he leads the Israelites to freedom. At Mount Sinai, Moses receives laws from God that will prepare the Israelites for life in a new land.
|Friday 22nd March 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 3: The Homeland – Joshua, Samson, Judges, David & Goliath
Joshua invades and conquers Jericho; Delilah betrays Samson, a hero of the Israelites who battled against Philistines.
|Friday 29th March 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 4: The Kingdom – David, Saul, Solomon
Samuel anoints Saul as king, a move that could throw the nation into civil war; Saul is consumed with jealousy over the crown when David defeats Goliath; King David ushers a golden age for Israel, but is soon seduced by power and lust for Bathsheba; God forgives David, and Solomon builds God’s temple in Jerusalem.
|Friday 5th April 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 5: The Survival – Zedekiah, Nebuchadnezzar, Daniel, Jews return to Jerusalem
Zedekiah, Nebuchadnezzar, the Jews are enslaved in Babylon; Daniel is thrown into the lions’ den, but when his faith endures and God spares him, the Jews are allowed to return to Jerusalem.
|Friday 12th April 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 6: The Hope – Roman, birth of Christ, John the Baptist, Jesus and Peter
During the time of Roman occupation, the Angel Gabriel tells Mary she will bear a child; Joseph takes Mary to Bethlehem for the census, where Jesus is born; the Holy family escapes Herod’s order to kill Bethlehem’s male babies; Judea comes under the ruthless rule of Pilate; John baptizes Jesus, who is now ready to take on his mission – and his revolution; Jesus and Peter meet.
|Friday 26th April 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 7: The Mission – Pharisees, Jesus, miracles, Disciples
Jesus feeds the crowds in Galilee and brings a dead man, Lazarus, back to life; Jesus enters Jerusalem riding on a donkey – a declaration that he is the Messiah; Jesus turns on the money-changers in the Temple.
|Friday 3rd May 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode
|St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 8: The Betrayal – Last supper, Judas, Peter’s Denial
Caiphas coaxes Judas into betraying Jesus; Jesus throws the disciples into turmoil at the Last Supper; Jesus is arrested and condemned to death as the disciples scatter.
|Friday 10th May 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode 9) Passion||St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 9: The Passion – Nicodemus, Caiaphas, Pilate, Crucifixion, Resurrection
The crucifixion and the Resurrection of Jesus through Ascension, Pentecost and Revelation. During this last episode, Peter denies Jesus and Judas hangs himself; the crowd clamors for Jesus’s death; Jesus is crucified, but when Mary Magdalene goes to his tomb, a figure walks towards her – he is back; Jesus commissions the disciples to “go and preach to all creation,” but their godly mission meets with hatred and even death.
|Friday 17th May 2019||8:10pm||The Bible: Episode 10) Courage ||St Swithun’s church hall||The Bible 2013 Miniseries § Episode 10: The Courage – Jesus returns, Holy Spirit comes, Disciples die, John survives death, exiled to Patmos, Revelation
Paul has a vision and experiences a miraculous change of faith on a journey to Damascus; Martyrdom of the Disciples, John’s survival and exile to Patmos, John receives a revelation – Jesus is coming back, and all who keep the faith will be rewarded.
FIRST HOLY COMMUNION 2019 Next Session (see above for full programmes)
Thank You so much for our last session, which finally prepared not only the children for the Sacrament of Confession, but was also a call to all of us to repent through this special presence of Lord with His sacramental forgiveness. Our Next Meeting will be held on 4th April 2019 (THURSDAY from 5:00pm to 6:30pm) and will be about “Session XI- “INSIDE THE SACRAMENT OF THE HOLY EUCHARIST part 1 ( It will be also a time of measuring the children for their First Communion tunics.) Please, have with You always your rosary beads – the wooden ones for the practice.
SHORT REMINDER FOR THE PARENTS OF THE FIRST COMMUNION CHILDREN – Please, attend the sessions with your children, because they are organised on the way to make your life a little bit easier do not create another, separated sessions just with the Parents. All the Parents should stay for the sessions with the children, please, please.
The Baptismal Programme 2019 Next Session (see above for full programmes)
Please, note that it is expected from the Parents & God -Parents to practice their faith, which also means to attend Sunday Mass regularly. Please note at our Sunday Family Mass on April 7th at 10:15am we will be Introducing the children to the Community of the Church and do their the First Anointing with the Catechumens’ Oil followed by the rehearsal after Mass.
ON 21ST APRIL – EASTER SUNDAY, at 10.15 am MASS – SACRAMENT of BAPTISM
RCIA CANDIDATES – All catechumens and candidates are very welcome for their next Formation Meeting this coming Thursday 28TH March at 6.45pm;
This is the last week of the March in which we continue to support with our prayers all those persecuted for their faith, for being Christians, for being such the witnesses of their fidelity and perseverance.
Prayer of the Month – March 2019
O Lord Jesus Christ, we confess you as the Way, the Truth, and the Life! We rejoice in this profession of our saving faith and ask you to keep us always aware of what a great gift it is. We know, O Lord, that in imitation of you, many of our brothers and sisters, ancestors in the faith, died for their profession of this faith in you. Teach us, like them, to value our union with you, our trust in you, our love for you more than any earthly treasure. Lord, we know too that Christians still suffer today merely for their profession of faith in you. Like in ages past, they endure hardship, loss, and even death because they cling to you. O Good Savior, we ask you to turn your merciful gaze upon these suffering Christians. Allow them to feel your presence and the assurance of hope in you. Grant, O Lord, that our human communities many recognize the rights of all to seek, find, and serve you in peace. Amen.
Please pray for those who are ill especially: Charlie Albert Matthews, Aileen Hopkins, Ann Ford, Colin Lennard, Piam Brown Ward, for all the children suffering and their poor families with them, David Shields, Bob Guy, Ms Sini Chacko, Shirley Parker, Kevin & Kathleen Jones, Heidi Badnell, Rosemary Devonald, Dominic, Carol Langsford, Pat Groom, Stan Whitnell, Rory McCreesh, Eddie Coppani, Peter Softely, Tony Denny, Betty Foster, Bobby, Eileen Stewart, John Williams, Margaret Bager, Fred Vuksani, Tom & Lily, Greta Kemp, Magda K, Mary Wallis, Micheline Thompson, Pat Needham, Margaret Badger, Anne Sullivan, Catherine Morgan, Jo Wheeler and Josephine Butler.
And all whose anniversaries occur at this time: 24th March : Eileen Inkpen, Benedict McCreesh, Albert Langford, Mary Herra, Walter Harry Ferbrache, William Walsh, Robert Forrester, Mary Margaret Cecilia Grant, Frank Short, Michael Power, Edward Marks, Ernest Japler, John O’Driscoll, Gladys Minnie O’Hara, Thomas Pearson, Ethel Pharo, William Parsons, Mary Comber, Sydney Tynan, Violet Querstret, Adeodata Andrews, Lilian da Silva, Patricia Rose Andow, John Molloy, Johanna O’Callaghan, Sheila McCaughey, Mary Simpson, Catherine Capon, Bro. David Poulten FSC, John Cogher, Bernard Duffy, George Crook, Phyllis Foster and Isabel Clabburn, Lizzie and Patrick McSharry ,Gemma Litchfield and Jozef Michalczuk.
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the Mercy of God rest in peace. Amen
|The Requiem Mass & the Funeral of our Beloved Parishioner + Eileen Inkpen RIP will take place on 11th April 2019 (Friday), at 10am in St Stwithun’s church.
We’ll welcome her body into the church on the day before, on Thursday at 4.30pm
“CAN-DO CHRISTIANS” A MESSAGE FROM FATHER MARCIN
Dearest Brothers and Sisters in Christ, Dear Friends: I would like to share with You some things which are about our Parish and for our Parish. I’m absolutely sure, that You have noticed how many things already happen in our Parish to help in our spiritual grow to love God more and more in His Word to us, in His Sacraments for us (which is His real presence among us). We also go out to meet those who still searching for God, or who were not so lucky to have personal contact with Jesus Christ.
A big THANK YOU to our sponsors who contribute to our Parish costs