newsletter 22nd November 2015

Newsletter 22nd November 2015.
Today is the last Sunday of the Church’s year and we celebrate the feast of Christ the King.
During the week the Masses will be for the 34th week in ordinary time.
Next Sunday is the First Sunday in Advent.
There is a second collection today to support the work of the Diocesan Youth Service.
Today is the feast of St. Cecilia, the patron of musicians.
After Mass today there will be an opportunity to sign cards to be sent to prisoners of conscience. Cards, envelopes and pens will be provided together with names and addresses so that messages can be sent.
A full week ahead with school meetings on Monday and Tuesday and to London for work on Wednesday and Thursday. Next week-end we may be able to start some work on the crib – bringing the figures down from the loft in the sacristy and thinking about the structure. Each year we think about a new structure, but somehow we don’t seem to get round to building it.
Some problems with the heating boiler in the Church in recent weeks – it needed a new thermic coupler for the pilot light. I hope that by the time that you read this, the problem will have been resolved. Luckily it has not been too cold in recent weeks.
Matters of great interest: new double deck buses have appeared on route 202 in recent weeks. They are built with a Volvo Chassis and a Wrights Gemini 3 body, constructed in Belfast. The 202 loads heavily, particularly at school times, and needed double deckers. It is a replacement for part of the original 108 route, which comes through the Blackwall Tunnel and at one time terminated at the Crystal Palace but now stops at Lewisham.
Here is a vegetable dish that might be helpful at Christmas. Cook some chopped and skinned tomatoes with a clove or two of garlic, maybe a little chopped onion and some oregano in some olive oil until it is well reduced. In the meantime slice and cook some courgettes and cook gently, preferably in a little butter. Merge with the sauce and serve hot. (Much better than pebble hard sprouts on Christmas day.)
I like the poems of Robert Frost. Do you know this one?
The leaves are all dead on the ground
Save those that the oak is keeping
To ravel them one by one
And let them go scraping and creeping
Out over the crusted snow
When others are sleeping.
November and we continue to pray for the faithful departed. Here is a prayer for you:
Make us sure of your love, so that we will be able to accept even that which we cannot understand. Help us today to be thinking not of the darkness of death but of the splendour of life everlasting, for ever in your presence and for ever with you.
Benedict’s rule is full of understanding. “The lack of strength of the elderly and the young must always be take into account and they should not be required to follow the strictness of the rule with regard to food, but should be treated with kindly consideration and allowed to eat before the regular hours.” (A thought at least to keep in mind when you find them raiding the fridge once again.)
The great nephew is looking forward to the end of the school term so that he can spend some more time with his grandfather, with lots of days cleaning cars and taking them to pieces. His sister is walking and is beginning to want to share in everything. Christmas is going to be most interesting this year. I am sure that there will be lots of competitions.
The First Communion classes are going very well. Thanks to the parents for all their help and support. The January class will be important with First Confessions and we are beginning to prepare for this.
Best wishes to you all.
Monsignor Nicholas Rothon

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