Newsletter 31st July 2011.
Almost August so I hope that things will be a little quieter and that you will be able to enjoy the holiday month. If only it could become a little warmer. So not many parish notices until we start again in September.
I have put out the inscription forms for the First Holy Communion classes. I would be grateful if you could return these to me as soon as possible. I will need to order the books for the children for the parents. As always the First Communion programme is most enjoyable and we have many good days – not only with the children but with the meetings of the parents.
The rice from Malawi has sold well. I understand that it is much better than the normal rice from the supermarket. Here is another recipe from French recipe book. Cook the rice, drain and dry. Cook some small peas, cool and drain. Mix the peas with some prawns, add to the rice and mix sell with some mayonnaise. Pile into a serving dish and add some quartered tomatoes round the base. A sprig of parsley on top to complete.
And now a prayer:
Grant us, O Lord, to pass this day in gladness and peace, without stumbling and without stain; that reaching the eventide victorious over all temptations, we may praise you, the eternal God, who are blessed and govern all things, world without end. Amen.
This is taken from the Mozarabic Liturgy, celebrated at the Cathedral of Toledo in Spain. The Council of Trent introduced a new universal Liturgy for the Church, but this did not reach Toledo due to the occupation by the Moors, and so the old liturgy remained in use – it has been preserved to the present day – with a special form of the Mass – and is known as the Mozarabic Liturgy. Once, many years ago, I set off from Madrid before dawn to attend this Mass in the
Cathedral at Toledo.
You will need a poem now, so how about something from Kubla Khan?
So twice five miles of fertile ground
With walls and towers girded round:
And here were gardens bright with sinuous rills,
Where blossomed many an incense-bearing tree;
And here were forests ancient as the hills
Enfolding sunny spots of greenery.
This reminds me that I need to start on the Christmas quiz for the magazine. It has become an annual joust with Ali, but each year she has been able to defeat me, no matter how obscure the questions, so I must try extra harder this year. Also my nieces do pretty well and now with great nephews to help, I don’t stand a chance.
The apple trees in the garden have done well this year, particularly the Bramleys. The Eucharistic Ministers were able to sample them the other evening. I decided to pick some of them before they became too big – or were damaged by the birds. The magpies are back as usual, with visits from the crows from time to time, as well as one elderly but very friendly robin. You must look out for him.
The school is now closed until the beginning of September. There will be a special day in August when the GCSE exam results arrive. Some of the pupils hold their envelopes and find it difficult to drum up courage to open them as they wonder what they might find. Then lots of hugs and laughs when they see the results.
All the new trains are now in service on the Victoria Line. The previous trains dated back to 1968, when the line was first opened. At the time they were one of the wonders of the age, to be compared to Concord and the QE2, for they were fully automatic. The driver only had to push a button to close the doors and start the train. New automatic systems are being introduced at present on other lines, as part of the upgrade of the Underground, but 43 years ago, this was revolutionary. In the same year the last steam locomotives were still operating on British Railways, so this was a world apart.
I hope that you are able to find the Parish Web site at stmarysblackheath.org.uk. It seems to be working well and I am able to add the newsletter each, to the puzzlement of readers from other parishes who wonder what it is all about.
Best wishes to you all,
Monsignor Nicholas Rothon