Living Simply....

Our Parish was awarded the CAFOD "Live Simply" honour at the start of the year, as we spent 2019 trying to find ways together to live in solidarity with the poor and with the planet.
Right now, in lots of ways, we are living more simply than any of us would have imagined. What can we take forward from this? How can we look to the future to protect our beautiful planet, protect each other and create a world in which we show care for those who care for us, show love to those who feel unloved and live simply but 'move mountains'...?
Thank you to our wonderful Bella Harding, who lead our CAFOD Live Simply campaign, for sending us these quotes to share with you all.
Don't forget to send us your photos of the beauty of nature, as seen from your window, your garden on whilst out on your allocated exercise.
#ChurchAtHome  Apart, yet together.

Gospel of the Day (John 6,44-51)

Jesus said to the crowds: "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day.
It is written in the prophets: 'They shall all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me.
Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father.
Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.
I am the bread of life.
Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died;
this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."
#ChurchAtHome   Apart, yet together

Canon Frank's Reflection

Another reflection for us to read, today from Canon Frank, about his thoughts during the lockdown.
Dear Friends in Christ. We are living in a very changing world. At the moment, the world is trying to deal with the coronavirus which has had an effect on all of us. During this crisis, our manner of life has changed. As a Christian Community what can we do to connect with one another while our churches are closed?
I will share a little with you about how my life as a Priest has changed… I celebrate daily Mass on my own and I pray for all of you. I also have time to read some books on Christianity so as to enhance the gift of faith. I would recommend that we read the ‘Acts of the Apostles’. This book is read at all Masses during the Easter season of 50 days (with the exception of a few Feast days).
Although we may feel separated we are all members of the Body of Christ. The restrictions imposed on us are for the benefit of all people and in lots of ways these regulations have brought people closer together. There is, it seems, in the country, a greater sense of belonging rather than living as individuals. Life is all about God and people.
In his Easter message Pope Francis is showing concern for all peoples and I quote; “This is not a time for indifference, because the whole world is suffering and needs to be united in facing the pandemic. May the risen Jesus grant hope to all the poor, to those living on the peripheries, to refugees and the homeless. May these, the most vulnerable of our brothers and sisters living in the cities and peripheries of every part of the world, not to be abandoned. Let us ensure that they do not lack basic necessities (all the more difficult to find now that many businesses are closed) such as medicine and especially the possibility of adequate health care. In light of the present circumstances, may international sanctions be relaxed, since these make it difficult for countries on which they have been imposed to provide adequate support to their citizens, and may all nations be put in a position to meet the greatest needs of the moment through the reduction, if not the forgiveness, of the debt burdening the balance sheets of the poorest nations.”

It always saddens me when I read about the vast amount of money spent on weapons of war and the development of nuclear arms to attack and destroy millions of people. It is very important to realise that every human being is in the image and likeness of God and that God sent Jesus Christ to save people and not destroy people. It follows then that war is morally evil. Speaking about the dignity of life, Bishop Declan recently spoke about the death penalty. He is appealing to governments to abolish completely the death penalty, irrespective of crimes committed. 2 wrongs never make a right. Executing people is completely against the mercy of God.

Finally, I want to thank you all for the kind messages and phone calls I have been receiving during this time.

May God bless you all.
Fr Frank.
#ChurchAtHome Apart, yet together.

Pope Francis' thoughts on the crisis.

The Pope gave an interview to Austen Ivereigh, a fellow from the University of Oxford, at the end of March when the pandemic was taking hold throughout the world.
He was asked a series of questions and recorded his thoughts as reported by the Tablet newspaper.
He was asked about crisis relating to the future vs ecology and said: "God always forgives, we sometimes forgive, nature never forgives. We did not respond to partial catastrophes,  and this is certainly nature's response. Every crisis contains both danger and opportunity. the opportunity to move out from the danger. Today I believe we have to slow down our rate of production and consumption and learn to understand and contemplate the natural world. We need to reconnect with our surroundings. This is the time to move from using and misusing nature to contemplating it. This is the moment to see the poor. ..What we are living now is a place of metanoia, conversion, and we have the chance to begin. So let's not let it slip from us, and let's move ahead. We have to learn to live in a church that exists in the tension between harmony and disorder provoked by the Holy Spirit. .. we have to respond to our confinement with all our creativity. Don't take refuge in escapism which in this time is of no use. We need to take with us the roots of our traditions and make for the mountain."
To see the whole interview CLICK HERE to go to the link.
#ChurchAtHome  Apart, yet together