newsletter 16th August 2020

St. Mary’s Blackheath

Mass times: 6.30pm Sunday evening 9.30 and 11am and 5 and 7.30 pm Sunday

Weekdays: Tuesday and Thursday 7.30am

Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday 10am.

Due to the distancing regulations it is not possible to hold confessions at present

Newsletter Sunday 16th August 2020.

Today we celebrate the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary – the feast was transferred from Saturday 15th August.

This is the 20th Week in ordinary time.

Please remember to use a mask when you come to Mass.

Also please remember to return First Communion applications as soon as possible. I hope to begin the new series of classes in the autumn.

For baptisms and other ceremonies in the Church, there is a limit of 30 guests.

Thursday is the feast of St. Bernard, a dominant figure in 12th century Europe – founding the Cistercian Order but strong in his criticism of the Abbey of Cluny, condemning Abelard, and preaching the second Crusade – which was a total disaster. In our own land he was involved in the story of the appointment of St. William of York as Archbishop he wished to appoint a Cistercian as Archbishop.

Friday is the feast of the Pope, St. Pius the tenth. Strangely, I own a signed photograph of Pius and I will try to remember to put it out on Friday.

It is good that we have been able to enjoy the garden during these summer days. There is a lot of work watering the plants and keeping the pool clean. We purchased a good supply of pool chemicals at the beginning the summer. The Myra fund helped meet the cost.

Thanks to all who have made banker’s orders to cover offertory donations. It is a great help, though an additional task each month to enter all the donations from the Bank Statement. Also, the magic machine seems to work well, though it needs a re-charge halfway through the day. It works with both cards and mobile phones.

To visit the boy and his sister last week – a quick evening visit as their mother is busy with a new job.  They are looking forward to the new term at school. The last term was disappointing as there was no cricket.  New school uniforms in a few weeks’ time as the continue to grow.  There were some alterations to their home in recent months so they both have new rooms – a time to discard some of the older treasures and start again. 

You will need a salad recipe at this time of year. Cover the bottom of the dish with sliced tomatoes and shred some parsley over them. A layer of sliced new potatoes and finally add some watercress. Dress with some single cream, pepper and salt and some olive oil and wine vinegar. This is taken from one of Arabella Boxer’s books. She says that is good enough to eat on its own.

A prayer from Karl Rahner. Lord you are love itself. Give me the grace of love, give me yourself, so that all my days may finally empty into the one day of your eternal life. Amen.

And now a summer poem from Edith Sitwell:

Once my heart was a summer rose

That cares not for right or wrong,

And the sun was another rose, that year,

The shone, the sun and the rose, my dear-

Over the long and the light summer land

All the bright summer long.

It is suggested that within 15 years, all diesel buses will have disappeared from London. The problem is that electric buses do not have the necessary range to cover some of the longer routes. You may have noticed that many of the electric Red Arrow buses seem to spend much of the day in the yard at Waterloo so that the batteries can be recharged – whilst one waits for ages in Holborn for a bus to London Bridge. There are some experimental hydrogen buses, but these have not been a great success.

Time for some Merton now:

There is no such thing as a kind of prayer in which you do absolutely nothing. If you are doing nothing, you are not praying. On the other hand, if God is the source of your interior activity, the work of your faculties may be entirely beyond conscious estimation, and its results may not be seen or understood. Contemplative prayer is a deep and simplified spiritual activity.

During the French revolution, the names of the months were changed. Thermidor lasted from 20th July to 18th August, Fructidor from 19th August to 17th September and Vendemiarie from 22nd September to 21st October. I will leave you to look up the rest.

Can you work out this?

If B m t, put:

If B . putting :

(If grate be empty, put coal on

If grate be full, stop putting coal on.)

Best wishes to you all,

Monsignor Nicholas Rothon

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