newsletter 6th October 2019


5, Cresswell Park, SE3 9RD

Tel. 020 8852 5420



Mass times: Saturday: 6.30 pm (first Mass of Sunday) Sunday: 9.30 am, 11.00 am, 7.30 pm Monday, Wednesday and Friday: 10.00 am Tuesday and Thursday: 7.30 am Eucharistic Service: Tuesday 10.00 am Confessions: Saturday 12 to 1.00 pm

Newsletter 6th October 2019

Today is the 27th Sunday of the Church’s year.

We will be collecting the donations from the CAFOD fast day after Mass today.

Monday is the commemoration of Our Lady of the Rosary.

Thanks for all who have signed up for the Latin Class. The first Class will be on Saturday 26th October at 4pm in the Angelus Room. Please remember to bring a notebook and pencil. The second class is on 9th November.

Congratulations to the children who have started the First Communion classes. The next class is on Saturday 12th October at 10am. The meeting to prepare the class is on Monday. After this, classes will be every month.

A request about the possibility of Scripture classes. The Sisters of St. Andrew are running a course on the gospel of St. Mark on the first Thursday of each month from 10.30 to 12.30 at the Convent at Belmont Hill.

My basil plants seem to be doing very well now that they are indoors. I would like to grow a small tree but wonder if it would survive in the garden with attacks from birds and insects.  The patch of grass used for the pool seems to have recovered well.

A curious recipe from Valencia. Grind some hazel nuts and some blanched almonds with some garlic to a paste in a mortar. Add a little salt and then add some olive oil and mix in a blender until you have a smooth paste. Season lightly with some vinegar. This goes well with fish.

Thanks to those who came to the AGM. I have put up a list of the new members of the parish council in the porch.

This prayer seems very appropriate: Lord we pray for a truly prophetic understanding of our society’s difficulties, tension and disorders. Stir in us a sense of justice and a true responsibility for one another. Enable us to create a community which is in accord with your will.

Best wishes to you all

Monsignor Nicholas Rothon

Twenty Seventh Sunday of the year.

A word today about the final verse of the gospel – when you have done all you have been told to do, say we are merely servants – we have done no more than our duty.  This one of the verses in which the meaning of the original versions is far from clear and over the years, there have been a number of interpretations in the various translations – some suggest the meaning is we have achieved nothing – and so the translations come out as – we are worthless, unprofitable, useless or unworthy.

But the original sense seems to be more delicate – we have done no more than might reasonably have been expected of us. We live in a world in which reward, remuneration, salary scales are important. What is a job really worth – and it works both ways – seemingly exorbitant payments, which become evident when things go wrong and in contrast, those who are exploited, who undertake menial tasks and who are not paid even the just minimum wage.

But it seems that the Lord is saying something different: duties and responsibilities which go beyond this. He speaks of the duties servants on farm and in a house, with their daily tasks of ploughing the fields or looking after the sheep but also helping in the house itself with the preparation and serving of the meals. To us this might seem an unfamiliar and distant way of life – but the underlying thought is that there are rhythms and patterns in the lives of us all – not stopping and questioning at every moment but this is part of our daily tasks which we undertake without questioning – the care of a mother who gets up to look after a sick child, a father who, after coming home from work, mends some toys that have been broken during the course of a day, the grand parent who helps look after the children during the school holidays – you can see how the gospel phrase might be applied – we have done no more than our duty – this is what is expected of us and it is not questioned in any way.

These are examples from everyday life – but how might we apply this further to the life of the Church, to our lives as  Catholics–  one of the problems of the mediaeval Church – leading to the reformation, was the way in which rituals and prayers had become systemised  and given a specific value –  we know of this from some of the characters in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales –  and external relics remain – a chantry built by a wealthy individual for continuing prayers  for the repose of his soul– arranging  for the recitation of a specific number of prayers for the gaining of an indulgence – ideas which were taken up with virulence by some of the reformers – though now these no longer form part of our experience.

But coming back to the words of the gospel again – what are the things that might be reasonably expected of us – nothing unusual – nothing for which we might expect acclaim or a special reward – but the small tasks that should form part of our everyday lives – almost as if we are hardly conscious of them and take them for granted – certainly these might include coming to Mass on Sundays and Holy days, a moment of prayer at the beginning and the end of each days, possibly grace before sharing a meal – these are not extra-ordinary things for which we expect a  special reward – they are part of who and what we are – and there can be a joy and a comfort in them – for me, reading my ancient office book each day which is part of my daily duties, maybe fingering the beads of our rosary – these are part of who and what we are – what is expected of us – what give us a specific identity – to take up the words of the gospel again – we have done no more than our duty.





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