“If you want to change the world, go home and love your family.”
On this, the Sunday within the Octave of Christmas, we honour the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph. In honouring them, we also honour all families, big or small. And in honouring all families, we honour the family of God, the Church.
The Holy Family, as the name suggests, is presented as the ideal to which we strive in our own pilgrimage of life towards greater holiness, which simply means walking more faithfully in God’s path of peace and love. Pope Francis begins his document on the Call to Holiness saying that we are made by God to “be saints and not to settle for a bland and mediocre existence.” We look to the Holy Family to see the way to becoming saints.
First Reading – Sirach 3:2-6, 12-14: God honours the authority of parents. Respecting one’s father and mother brings blessings, atonement for sins, and longevity. Caring fort aging parents is a lasting act of kindness.
Second Reading – Colossians 3:12-21: As god’s chosen, embrace compassion, kindness, humility and patience. Forgive as the Lord forgave you and let Christ’s peace rule your heart. In all things, act with thankfulness to God.
Gospel – Luke 2:22-40: Joseph and Mary presented Jesus at the temple, fulfilling the law.
The Pope’s Intention for the Month of January. For the Gift of Diversity in the Church: We pray that the Holy Spirit may help us to recognise the gift of different charisms within the Christian community and to discover the richness of different traditions and rituals in the Catholic Church.
Crib offerings – in support of the urgent need in the Holy Land.
Please remember, the parish hall is still a building site and, for health and safety reasons, is officially out of bounds.
Minutes of the PPC (Parish Pastoral Council) Meeting held on 5th December are now available to read on-line and also in hard copy to pick up from the back of the church.
Scam Emails. If anyone receives any email asking for money or gift cards using Fr. Peter’s name, please do not reply or make contact in any way.
The First Aid Training Course will take place at St John of the Cross on Monday 8th January at 2pm. The session will last approx. 75 minutes. Defibrillator training will be included. Would all those who volunteered to be ‘First Aiders’ please be at St John’s in plenty of time to ensure a prompt start.
The newly-formed Parish Social Committee will next meet in the presbytery on Monday 22nd January at 7.30pm, principally to discuss the Parish Fete, which it is hoped will be held in the summer. We would like to see representatives from each of the churches.
The Website Calendar is now in use for announcements on-line of any future parish activities.
Key Register. If you hold any church keys, as yet not declared, please make sure you fill in one of the slips in the church porch or inform Peter, Antonia or Fr Peter as it is important that we have a record of all church keys. Thank you.
We pray for our sick parishioners: Matt Butler, Frances Palman, Mary Bell, Mary Carr, Paul Watson, Cyril Shenton, Patricia Newton, Celia Cooper, Marie Barton, Robert Buhagiar, Margaret Larkins, Daphne Necchi, Bert Pooler, Maria Halsey, Shirley Teague, Joan Macnamara, Richard Skelton, Teresa Fitzmaurice and Joan Gale.
We pray for those whose anniversaries occur at this week: John Egan, Hilary Bolger, Ernest Brown, Doreen Burton, Philip (Charles) Byrne, Pamela Corbould, Arthur Hodgson, Kate (Kit) Denton and Derek Palman. May they rest in peace.