The Gospel reading about the feeding of the five thousand is a peg on which St John hangs his discourse on Jesus, the bread of life. The Gospel today ends with Jesus’ words: ‘the bread that I shall give is my flesh, for the life of the world’. It is a radical statement from which the Church draws its belief in the Real Presence of the Risen Christ in the Eucharist. This is why the Mass is so central to our Catholic faith and worship. It is about Jesus truly present among us and within us.
It is not always easy for our modern mentality to understand this. We tend to think that only the here is real; only the now is actual; only the observable is knowable; only the perishable can sustain us. Our problem is not just believing that God could inhabit bread: it is believing that God could inhabit us.
Faith tells us that there is more here than surface or superficiality; that the transcendent takes flesh. Without the ‘real presence’ there is no point to the journey, no answer to the quest of our minds, no final satisfaction for the hunger of our hearts.
The English language is full of interesting byways. For example we have a raft of collective nouns (‘a pride of lions’). What is the collective noun for bishops? Is there one? A bench of bishops is rather pedestrian. Your best suggestion will appear in next week’s newsletter!
The Senior Citizens Group will meet on Monday 10rd August as usual.
The Bible Study Group are unable to meet on Friday 14th August as a reception in the hall will follow the Requiem Mass of Ellen McDonald.
Churches Together (for North Walsham) are organising a Safari Supper on Saturday 5th September, starting at 6.30 pm. Our church will be providing the dessert. Tickets for this event are on sale after Mass today. Cost for adults £7.50; under 12s £5.00.
Today (Sunday) after Mass at North Walsham, in an attempt to sell off and clear the many items left over from the fete, Maureen and Antonia are holding a “Sale – at knockdown prices” in the parish hall. These sales will occur on each of the intervening Sundays from Kerry and Lauren’s book sale. The money raised from the Fete items will go towards the Organ Fund.
Fr Michael Johnstone is planning to take another group to Jamaica to work as volunteers with the Missionaries of the Poor. Anyone over 18 interested in finding out more and possibly joining – please contact him. The only cost is the fare, for which we will try to arrange sponsorship opportunities. To contact ring 01328 823586 or go to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Shrine at Walsingham is looking for a Sales assistant to help with the Shrine Shop on busy pilgrimage days and to cover staff holidays for the next three months. If you would like to help please contact Sonya or Paul at: email@example.com or telephone 01328 821794.
A local author has written a book on The History of Worstead. It is priced at £9.99 with proceeds going to local charities. In the church porch at North Walsham there is a copy available for viewing. Please sign the list if you would like to order a copy.
Stephen Wynes wishes to thank all those who have sent best wishes, prayers and offers of help to Margaret and himself. He hopes to be back on his feet again in a few weeks.
We pray for Ellen McDonald who died last week and those whose anniversaries occur at this time including: Betty Beardshaw, Stanley Duddridge, Elspeth Forrest, Brian de Soissons and Bernard Eyre.
May they rest in peace.
Next Sunday we will celebrate the Feast of the Assumption which is transferred from the previous day.