newsletter 10th January 2021

St. Mary’s Blackheath.

Newsletter 10th January 2021

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

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

For the time being, until we come out of Tier 4 Confessions are suspended.

Under the new regulations, I am pleased to say that the Church will continue to be open for Mass. Please help with keeping the distancing and the sanitising provision.   I will let you know if any changes should become necessary.

We completed the Christmas season last Wednesday with the feast of the Epiphany.

We now begin to think of the public life of the Lord with the feast of the Baptism. We commemorate of the Baptism of the Lord in the Jordan by John, but also gives thanks for our own baptism and for the baptisms of the children in our families.

I hope that you are keeping well and managing to cope in spite of the difficulties..

Some Liturgical details; On Sundays, the Scripture readings are taken from cycle B. During the week, on ordinary days, the Scripture readings are taken from the first cycle. This week counts as the First Week in Ordinary time and the green vestments will appear again from Monday. There are no special feasts of Saints this week.

Inevitably it is necessary to postpone the First Communion and Confirmation classes for the time being but I will let you know when we are able to start again.

There are some outstanding requests for Baptisms and Marriages. At present the rules are quite firm and they are not possible for the time being. I will keep this under review and will let you know if there are any changes: it is helpful to let me have an email address for this.

One good item – I was able to complete the parish annual accounts in record time this year and the figures came out to the penny. I await some information from the Diocesan Finance Office so that I can complete the annual return form.

Each year the great-nephews and nieces send a calendar with photos from the previous year, which is always  great fun. Anna has her mouth firmly shut in all the photo s instead of the usual smile. It was the year for the new teeth and she was waiting for the new ones to grow. I saw her at Christmas and she is doing well – so lots of smiles next year.

A basic country stew for the January days: a small cabbage, some potatoes and a carrot or two with some pieces of ham.  Chop everything into small pieces and season well. Stew slowly until everything is soft.

During recent travels, I noted that the new Tube Station at Nine Elms for the Northern Line extension is nearing completion.  In the past this was the site of the last depot for steam locomotives.  Maybe the ghost of a “West Country” class still lurks in the tunnels.

A prayer at a Baptism:

Seeing how through baptism we are regenerated and grafted into the body of Christ’s Church, let us give thanks to Almighty God for these benefits and with one accord make our prayers unto him, that He may lead us, through the rest of our lives according to this beginning.

Have your noticed the shoots for the spring flowers in the garden? The weather has been quite mild and the daffodils have started to appear early. Too soon to start on my herb pots but this should be possible within the next couple of months. The attempt at some late parsley was not successful and I will try again. The flowers from the Christmas crib have found a place in the garden and I hope that they will survive.

Do not ask what can your country do for you, ask what’s for dinner.

Best wishes to you all:

Monsignor Nicholas Rothon  

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