What can we do to help with this tragic situation which is highly complex with decades of conflict that have taken a terrible toll on Afghan people, resulting in deaths, injuries and pushing families further into poverty. Drought and coronavirus have added even greater problems for vulnerable families struggling with hunger and healthcare.
We can donate if we are able to. Go to the CAFOD website:
And we can pray...
We welcome you all to the Season of Creation!
We welcome you all to the Season of Creation!
During September we pray especially for the planet and for its future, which is in our hands.
We will offer advice and tips for how we can all do more for the environment and offer prayers for the climate.
When you next visit the Church you will see the beautiful banner created by members of the parish from surplus materials they all had. it says 'Laudato Si' which means 'Praise Gid' and is the title of the Pope's letter on the Care of our Common Home.
Surrounding the centerpiece are all the beautiful things of creation, flowers, animals, birds, bees, frogs, fish, and rainbows!
The centerpiece represents the 7 elements of the Laudato Si action platform, the care for creation programme the Vatican is about to announce:
*hear the cry of the earth (pollution, extinction of species and warming)
*the cry of the poor (whose lands and flooded or without rain etc)
*economics for creation (not profit alone)
*a simple lifestyle
*education for creation (we should all learn more)
*spirituality for creation (we pray for the planet and all life)
*and active community participation in making the future a better one.
All parts of the church are invited to join to become carbon zero ASAP and to heal the planet.
THIS WEEK'S TIP: We invite you to share your surplus garden produce at the back of church - we may be feeding those who really need it and it is so nice to share! Maybe have a think about how much meat and fish we are eating. Try eating less this week. The industrial levels of farming and fishing are a major worry to the environment. Perhaps do some research and see what you think?
For more information or to join the creation action team, please contact Bella harding, via the parish office.
Thank you Deacon Vincent for your Reflections for 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B:
1st Reading from the Prophet Isaiah 35: 4-7.
Isaiah’s visions, for those of us, who have read the Gospels and encountered the Lord, are very Messianic, but Isaiah was seeing the return of the captive Israel from exile. It is very Messianic because it is the work of God, and God will direct the Messiah to carry out his will at a later date. As Isaiah sees the people coming home through the great mercy of God, everything will be restored, and the people made whole again. We see in the actions of Jesus, how the will of the father is for everything to be restored because the Messiah is the Son of God. Isaiah is a spokesman for God, and so we perceive the ongoing enhancement of mankind through the word, preserved in the holy books of Israel, which is preparing us to be able to interpret Jesus when he comes into the world. In the New Testament we see a reflection of the First Testament, simply because it is God’s continuous revelation, preparing the way for his beloved Son, Jesus. This vision of Isaiah is a continuation of a very long revelation and it is encouraging the people to take heart because God is coming for them, he is not passive he is actively working to bring them home, everything will be made possible for the people to once more come home. Later we will see how Jesus continues God’s work by enlightening and encouraging the people to realise the great Goodness of God. God is not just interested in our spiritual well-being but in our physical well-being as well.
Psalm 145: 7-10.
A song in praise of God’s continuous work on our behalf, always looking after our welfare. God really is good, and we need to realise just how much he does love and care for us, especially those who are struggling and weighed down by life. He is always close at hand, so
2nd Reading from the letter of St. James 2: 1-5.
James, like Jesus is not afraid to be remarkably direct when he encounters, what he sees, as hypocrisy in the believers. We are shocked into realisation, when he illustrates how we treat with so much warmth, the affluent, more so than with the poor, when they come to church. James points out how this goes against Jesus’ teaching, that the Second commandment calls upon us to love our neighbour as ourselves. We see in James' letter an echo of Matthew’s Gospel 22: 39. It is a very salutary reminder to have placed before us, as we strive to be more Christ-like.
This episode takes place on the eastern side of the Jordon in foreign territory. Jesus calmly and without any effort opens the man’s ears and touches his tongue and the man can hear and speak clearly. Once again Jesus commands silence from the person healed, for this is not to define him as just a miracle worker, the sign he will give which the world can shout about from the rooftops will be his death and resurrection, that is what will define Jesus as the Messiah the chosen one of God, Gods Son. The point of this story may be an echo of our first reading today, from Isaiah. Jesus is the ongoing work of the Father. The First Testament is constantly being affirmed and reflected in the New Testament. Both Testaments are intertwined in the Father’s ongoing work for us today. Therein lies the importance of becoming familiar with both Testaments.
God Bless you All & Stay Safe. Deacon Vincent