Dear Parishioners and all those who logged into our Parish,
may the joy and peace of the Risen Christ be in you and upon you.
A What’s App has recommended lighting a candle at 7.30pm and saying a prayer – something we can all do, and at the same time.
The Parish Bulletin is available via the Parish website.
The celebration of Mass took place at 7pm on Saturday 18th April – Parishioners and others joined via the webcam.
Once again, I would like to share some thoughts with you. Intercom, a Catholic Pastoral and Liturgical Resource magazine that I receive monthly gives a thought on the readings:
First reading: from the Acts of the Apostles 2:42-47.
It would not be long before the infant Church felt the first cold winds of persecution, but this reading from Acts describes the Church’s honeymoon, a time of unity, joy and peace. Both times are caught up in God’s providence.
Responsorial Psalm 117.
Give thanks to the Lord for he is good, for his love has no end.
Second reading: from the first letter of St Peter 1:3-9.
If we seek an anthem, a refrain, a truly Christian mantra for this season of Easter, we need look no further than the first line of this reading: ‘Blessed be God the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.’
Gospel: according to John 20:19-31.
The first word of the Risen Christ is ‘peace.’ His first action is to show his disciples the wounds thorough which he has secured that peace. He then appoints the disciples to mission, giving them the power of his Spirit.
My few words:
At the beginning of Mass:
We gather again – at a distance – to celebrate Easter, the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Easter Sunday is celebrated over a whole week because it is so important to us as Christians. And like the disciples huddled together in that Room in Jerusalem we too, huddled together at home, are growing in faith and coming to understand more about Jesus and his life, his Passion, his Death and his Resurrection.
Let us give thanks to God for Christ’s Resurrection and His presence among us…Glory to God in the highest….
After the Gospel:
You may have noticed that at the beginning of Mass we went straight to the Gloria. In doing so I want to highlight the joy of Easter – that Christ rose from the dead. We need to remind ourselves of that truth of our faith often. The Church celebrates this first week of Easter as one great day of joy – one Great Sunday – which spills over into a total of 50days of the Easter Season of joy.
No Penitential Rite – Christ died for our sins – they are forgiven – and forgotten – the pain and guilt that sin brings is taken away by the death of Jesus on the Cross. So, going straight to the Gloria reminds us of Christ’s victory over sin and death and that we should be joyful and at peace with God and each other and ourselves.
The Gospel story today describes our own story in todays world. Like the disciples, we too are locked to some extent in our own homes, our doors are closed to the outside world. The disciples would remain in that locked-in situation for 50days, until the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. And we too will have to endure the restrictions set on us for a while longer – but hopefully not for 50days – we’ll have to wait and see. But in our case and in our world, it is for the good of all of us.
The Gospel tells us that the disciples were behind closed doors for fear of the Jews. What had happened to Jesus – arrest, scourging and crucifixion – might also happen to them. But perhaps there was another reason: fear of meeting Jesus face to face. In his hour of need all the disciples except John deserted Jesus: Judas betrayed him; Peter denied him. They carried a lot of guilt and shame in their hearts. And now Jesus was alive – they would meet him again – how could they face him, eye to eye? And we’ve all been there – meeting someone again who knows what we said about them or did wrong against – an awkward moment – in the kitchen, on the street, at a party or family gathering, a wedding or a funeral – yes, I’d say most of us have had that awkward embarrassing moment.
So back to Jerusalem and that room full of disciples and suddenly Jesus appears. And before Peter can run over to him, fall on his knees and ask forgiveness for his denials, Jesus says, ‘Peace be with you’ – and although the Gospel does not tell us, I’m sure he looked each one in the eye as he said it. And in that look and in those words, they knew he had forgiven them and the guilt and the shame and the embarrassment was removed.
In a meditation on the 12th Station of the Cross, Jesus dying on the Cross, this thought is put before us – Christ dies for our sins, he took all our sins on to himself and in the dying and taking, he even thought of me! And that is why, at least during this week of celebrating Christ’s Death and Resurrection we should go straight to the Gloria in joyful thanksgiving.
Todays Gospel concludes: There are many other signs that Jesus worked, and the disciples saw, but they are not recorded in this book. And those signs include the signs of forgiveness we have bestowed on others, especially on those we gather with at home today. I forgive you. Peace be with you!
At the end of Mass:
Parish Bulletin: some relatives or neighbours may like a printed off version of the Bulletin given to them!
Sunday collection/Parish envelopes: some Parishioners have left envelopes at the Parochial House – thank you for your support and contributions. If you feel you would like to contribute and are able to contribute, you can leave envelopes at the Parochial House.
Some have inquired about contibutions using Standing Order – the form is available to print off via the website for those who wish to use this way of contributing to Parish finances. See ‘Parish Envelopes’ on home page.
Trocaire monies can also be left at the Parochial House.
This Second Sunday of Easter within the Easter Octave is also called Divine Mercy Sunday – Mass to mark this will be streamed via webcam from Killeeshil Parish at 3pm tomorrow, Sunday. Details on the Parish Bulletin.
WEEKLY FOOD BOX.
A weekly service will see 10,000 food boxes being delivered to the most vulnerable during the Covid-19 lockdown. If you have received a letter from your GP and you have been asked to shield during the pandemic you may be able to get a weekly food box delivered to your home. Food boxes are available for people who cannot afford food and who do not have a support network of family and friends to help them through this emergency. These boxes will also be available to those who are not shielding, but who are in critical need of food including families and older citizens.
If you feel you may qualify for a weekly food box you can contact the Covod-19 Community helpline who will carry out an assessment to see if you are able to avail of a food box. Your details will then be passed on to partners in the Health Trusts and/or local Councils who will arrange delivery of your weekly food box.
Telephone the Covid-19 Community Helpline 08088020020 email: email@example.com text: ACTION to 81025.
I see in Denmark they have relaxed some restrictions to businesses including hairdressers and barbers – we should have kept even more friendly with the Vikings all those years ago and we could have been following their regulations today!! (as Fr draws his hand through his hair and beard!!)
I wish you all the peace and joy of Easter
Continue to do what we are doing for the good of us all – stay at home!
Keep safe and well and keep your distance!