Mass Stream for 13th Sunday of the year 27th July at 21:00

Changes in how Church operates.

The Bishops' Conference has issued new guidelines commensurate with Stage 3 of the Government's roadmap out of the current lockdown and restrictions. We will implement these slowly over the next few weeks.  The rule is now

  • 1m plus mitigating factors such as the continued use of face masks and hand sanitising etc.
  • The seating capacity has now been increased to 245 persons. Please seat yourselves sensibly with due regard to other parishioners' space.
  • There is no longer a requirement for marshals when there is no danger of overcrowding, so there will thus be no marshals at the 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Masses on Sundays or any weekday Masses.
  • At Masses with no marshals, please come up to Communion as one would have done before current restrictions, starting from the front of the Church and working backwards.
  • Please do no return to your place via the central aisles but rather via the side aisles and please keep a sensible distance.
  • Communion will remain under one kind on the hand, but the priest will say to each individual 'The Body of Christ' to which the communicant replies 'Amen'.
  • Readers will use the lectionary at the ambo and not be issued with the readings on loose sheets.
  • Please remember if you do not wear a mask to church, to sit in the area in front of the Lady Chapel.
  • Current arrangements for confessions and for exiting the Church etc will remain in place for the time being.

Further changes will be made in a few weeks' time.  The emphasis needs to be on personal responsibility for one's own well-being and that of others.  Thank you for your co-operation over the past year and into the future.

Fr David

Parish Giving

Please use the form below to make ad-hoc contributions to the work of the Parish.

This system does not yet allow you to set up an account for the Gift Aid system, but is the same payment system as the terminals in church ("tap and go" terminals). You will soon be able to register here for gift aid giving, and then your contributions made on the terminals will also be gift aided.

St Aloyisius 1 John 5:1-5, Psalm 15(16):1-2,5,7-8,11, Matthew 22:34-40 or, Monday in Week 12 The Gospel for the memorial of today's saint contains the phrase 'with all your mind' and is unique to the Gospel of St Matthew - the other Gospels on this same question stop with 'you must Love the Lord your God with all your heart and might' (or equivalents). What does the evangelist mean by adding 'and with all your mind' ?  Our secular society seizes upon the scientific method of posing a question and looking for evidence to disprove it - if none is found then it must be true.  This has led to many great discoveries about creation which inform and bless our minds. Perhaps the phrase can remind us that this human endeavour to seek out the when and the how of God's creation, leads to fuller and more glorious minds with which to Love God - and also should fill our hearts with awe and wonder, and a desire always to ask 'Why?' St Aloysius Gonzaga (1568 - 1591) St Aloysius was the eldest son of a Mantuan nobleman, and was intended by his father to be a soldier. Aloysius, on the other hand, had determined to be a missionary, and even to die for his faith. He renounced his birthright in favour of his brother and at the age of 16 became a Jesuit novice in Rome, living the same life of severe austerity and penance that he had followed even when serving in the courts of dukes and princes. In 1591 an epidemic of plague broke out in Rome, and the Jesuits opened a hospital to care for the sick. Aloysius, still a novice, worked hard in the hospital until he himself caught the plague. He did not recover; but, his determination to die for the faith having been fulfilled, died at midnight on the 20th of June with the name of Jesus on his lips.
St John Fisher and St Thomas More, Martyrs (Feast). 2 Maccabees 6:18,21,24-31; Psalm 30(31):2,6,12-13,15-17,25; Matthew 24:4-13 It is easy enough to find out the facts of Thomas Mores' martyrdom, it is well known. Let us consider his person - who was he? Much of his personality comes out in his prayers  -  many of which were written while in prison awaiting execution. St Thomas More, Pray for us.
A prayer for our enemies
Almighty God, have mercy on N. and N., and on all that bear me evil will, and would me harm. Their faults and mine together, by such easy, tender, merciful means as thine infinite wisdom best can devise, vouchsafe to amend and redress; and make us saved souls in Heaven together, where we may ever live and love together with thee and thy blessed saints, O glorious Trinity, for the bitter passion of our sweet Saviour Christ. Amen.
  Lord, give me patience in tribulation and grace in everything, to conform my will to thine, that I may truly say: “Fiat voluntas tua, sicut in cælo et in terra”.
  The things, good Lord, that I pray for, give me thy grace to labour for. Amen.
St Thomas More, 1535
Wednesday of week 12 in Ordinary Time or Saint Etheldreda (or Audrey), Abbess Genesis 15:1-12,17-18; Psalm 104(105):1-4,6-9; Matthew 7:15-20 Today's Gospel is an exquisite example of scriptural writing - a master has been at work. The structure is balanced - the threat of the wolves is balanced by the threat of cutting down the rotten tree, the opening 'you will be able to tell them by their fruits' balanced by the closing repeat of the same message. Take care then, that we speak the word of God from a life (our tree of life) that has been pruned of any rotten fruit or branches that do not bear good fruit. Those we meet in the market place of the world of work, will for sure know what kind of fruit we bear. How can we be sure that our tree os sound and worthy to bear the fruits of the Lord's gifts? By prayer, and trust in Him. Abraham trusted in the Lord (Gen 15:17-18) and his descendants, amongst whom we are part of the number - number greater than the stars in the sky. This covenant between God and Abraham was signed by the sacrifice made by Abraham and God's consuming this on the Altar. Fortunately - the tree of our life is grafted to a strong and true stock - the root of our lives is Jesus our Lord. As today's Psalm promises, The Lord remembers his covenant with us forever.
Thursday in Week 11 Per Annum (17th June): II Cor 11.1-11; Psalm 110; Matthew 6.7-15 “I may not be a polished speechmaker” Paul writes self-critically, and it seems evident that some disparagement of Paul’s message within the Corinthian community has been because of the perception that he wasn’t a strong public speaker. [cf I Cor 1.17; 2.1; II Cor 10.1,10; Acts 20.7-11] Yet Paul certainly wasn’t incapable of framing and sustaining an argument. Perhaps the subtlety of his case is easier to apprehend in written form than in sound bites. Most of all, though, the persuasive evidence he offers is the evidence of his own life. He adopts a paternal solicitude towards those he tries to help grow in Christ [cf I Cor 4.15] He boldly calls himself their ‘father in Christ,’ perhaps deliberately recalling Jesus’ radical comparison of the God of the universe to earthly fatherhood. Paul’s own example of generosity, inspired by God’s own prior generosity, is the most resounding argument Paul can offer. [cf I Cor 13.1]
Friday in Week 11 Per Annum (18th June): II Cor 11.18,21-30; Psalm 33; Matthew 6.19-23 Paul’s catalogue of the judicial penalties he has suffered at the hands of various human authorities leads on to the suggestion that God himself has abandoned Paul to the terrors of nature, and especially to the powers of the sea. He has been shipwrecked, left adrift in the open sea for a night and a day. [cf Acts 27.1-44] Worse than any of these calamities, though, Paul claims, is the anxiety he feels: “my care for all the churches.” That care in Latin is cura, a word we can see in the old English term curate for a clergyperson, or in the slightly old-fashioned term “cure of souls” for pastoral ministry. As Paul suggests, that “cure” isn’t a once-for-all-time solution but an on-going relationship. Paul knows that the burden of care for others is the vocation by which God gave him life and constantly renewed it. Paul cares for others because, despite all evidence to the contrary, he knows that in every circumstance of his life he has himself been cared for.
Saturday in Week 11 Per Annum (19th June): II Cor 12.1-10; Psalm 33; Matthew 6.24-34 Consideration of what the “thorn in his flesh” was that Paul experienced has consumed enormous amounts of time, energy and ink. We simply don’t know, and Paul won’t tell us. Perhaps our attention would more profitably be spent considering what the “thorns” are in our own lives, and what they can teach us, how they can transform us. “It is when I am weak that I am strong” Paul asserts paradoxically. How do our own weaknesses, disabilities and infirmities draw us closer to our Saviour? How does our realisation of what we aren’t able to accomplish make us better channels for the power of God himself? Those who disparaged Paul and his ministry were manifestly unjust in their assessments. How does our own experience of injustice make us more effective proclaimers of the justice and mercy of God? Paul is spiritually strengthened and fortified by his sense of the grace of God, grace that for him is sufficient, grace that means more than all the world to him.

Attending Church: Guidance for Parishioners

  1. Entrance to the church will be through the St James Square doors.
  2. When arriving and leaving the church please use the hand sanitising gel provided.
  3. You will have the opportunity to light a votive candle which is located in front of the font. Please use existing candle as the source of ignition.
  4. There is no holy water within the stoups.
  5. Please only use pews with a green tick symbol on them. Once the church is at capacity, you may sit in a non-green pew, but not directly behind other people - aim for a zig-zag approach. Stewards will advise you as appropriate: please follow their advice. 
  6. At very busy times, there will be an overflow facility in the Old Priory. At A mass which is streamed, this will be relayed to the projector and speakers there.
  7. The direction of entrance into the church will be up the nave, as you depart, you are requested to leave via the side aisles, then in towards the crossing and out of the Clarence Street exit (Sundays) or the side doors (weekday Mass). Stewards will assist as required.
  8. Face coverings are mandatory other than for children under 11 years of age and for some with particular medical conditions. Signage advising seating limitations will be posted on pew ends.
  9. Those needing to make use of '2 meter social distancing' (including all those who have exemptions from wearing face masks) should use the individual chairs near to the lady chapel.
  10. The physical veneration of statues and crucifixes is not permitted.
  11. The seating areas will be cleaned following Mass when there is another service following on. Your help with this would be much appreciated - please ask the stewards on duty if they need some help.

Risk Assessment Document for Public Mass in St Gregory the Great. v11