newsletter 20th December 2020

St. Mary’s Blackheath.

Newsletter 20th December 2020

Mass times: Saturday 6.30pm (first Mass of Sunday) – Sunday 9.30 and 11am, 5 and 7.30pm.

Weekdays: Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at 10am. Tuesday and Thursday 7.30am.

Confessions: Saturday 12 to 1.

Today is the Fourth Sunday of Advent, the last Sunday before Christmas.

A reminder about the Christmas services.

The first Masses of Christmas will be at 6.30 and 8pm on Christmas Eve.

There will be a Mass at 12 midnight. The Church will be open from 11pm. This year there will not be a carol service before the Mass.

On Christmas morning, Masses will be at 9.30 and 11am.

This year it will not be possible to hold the usual procession through the Village on Christmas Eve. Also, we will not be performing the normal cycle of mystery plays: the costumes have been kept safely and we hope that we can use them next year.

The crib is in a simplified form this year.

We have to maintain the distancing rules in the Church, and I am sure that you will understand the need for this.

There will be the normal Masses at 10am and 6.30 in the evening on Boxing Day.

Next Sunday there will be a pastoral letter from the Archbishop.

Usually at this time for year we would be producing the Magazine with the renowned and fabulously difficult quiz. I regret that this is not possible at present, but we hope to resume normal service in the New Year.

What has happened to Green’s custard mix? It seems to have disappeared from the shelves. In previous years I had a wonderful post-Christmas recipe, to use up the remains of the panettone, covering the remaining pieces with some hot custard, adding a few raisins and baking in the oven until slightly browned. 

Eliot’s Magi have set off on their journey:

A cold coming we had of it,

Just the worst time of the year

For a journey and such a long journey

The very dead of winter.

On the railways, the new sets are being delivered to the South Western railway and will appear first on the Reading lines early in the new year.  The very new 707 units are no longer required: at first it was suggested that they would be sold to the South Eastern, but it now seems that they will be leased. We should see them on the  Bexleyheath line some time next year.

The boy and his sister have  finished school and I look forward to seeing them on Christmas Day. Alexa helps with the entertainment and I will be preparing a list of music for dancing.  Anna can’t understand why I suggest the Charleston.  Or how about something lively from Glenn Miller.

A wonderful prayer for Christmas Day:

Grant us, O Heavenly Father, such love and wonder at your Son’s birth that we may come with shepherds, wise men and pilgrims to adore him, the King of heaven. May we offer him the love of our hearts and may we be enriched by his mercy and love. As we see our God living our human life, so may we rejoice in the full vision of his glory in heaven.

And a request – please remember to turn off your mobile phone in the Church as it upsets the loop system for the hard of hearing.

Best wishes to you all

Monsignor Nicholas Rothon

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