Thursday, 29 September 2011

Newsletter for 1/2 & 8/9 October - Sundays 27 & 28(A)

Click here to read this double issue of the newsletter.

This statement on marriage is read or circulated to all congregations across the diocese this weekend. Printed copies will be available in Church.

Next Friday, 7th October, is CAFOD's Harvest Fast Day. Envelopes will be distributed this Sunday, we deny ourselves something on Friday 7th, then return our envelopes with what we have saved at the weekend Masses on 8/9th October.

Monday, 26 September 2011

Our new Oratory...

... of Blessed Cyprian Tansi was used for Mass for the first time this morning.

Thanks be to God.

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Sunday, 18 September 2011

An interesting conversation...

...between Frank Skinner and the Archbishop of Canterbury took place recently in Canterbury Cathedral. I found much that was said very thought provoking and challenging.
Listen to part one here.
Listen to part two here.

Saturday, 17 September 2011

More on Friday Penance

Bishop Kieran Conry of Arundel and Brighton seems to have been one of the main influences behind the new arrangements for Friday abstinence. You will find an extract from his Advent Pastoral Letter, 2010, below. As well as helping our understanding of Friday penance, his discussion of 'Catholic identity' is particularly interesting.

Next week, Monday 15 November, I am going to Leeds for a meeting of the Bishops’ Conference. I hope that we will discuss the possibility of restoring the old Friday Fast Day. This was one of the most obvious signs of Catholic identity, apart from going to Mass. It determined the diet in places like prison and hospital, and was something that Catholics were instinctively conscious of: we knew that we couldn’t have meat like everybody else that day, and it was a source of a sort of pride – it marked us out as different.
Today we are perhaps less willing to be marked out, in case we are marked out as not just different, but ‘odd’. And that is what we had been told, and began to believe. But the Pope’s visit has said to us that this is not ‘odd’, but that it’s actually important. A few years ago I suggested that we might take up another of those old Catholic practices, grace before meals, if we had lost the habit of it. It’s not difficult, doesn’t take much time, but it’s a gentle reminder.
There are all sorts of small ways in which we quietly show to the world that we believe in Christ, and that we want to welcome Christ back into a world that has either largely forgotten him or never really heard of him. Pop into the church when you are passing, so that people can see it. Put a crucifix in the window. If you are at work or with friends and people ask you what you did at the weekend, mention the fact that you went to Church. But make sure it’s true. And we can also show ourselves, by praying a little more often, and spending time reflecting on the bible.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Thursday, 15 September 2011

Episcopal Ordination

It was wonderful to be at the Ordination of John Sherrington as a bishop yesterday. Deacon John was also there as were many priests and deacons from Nottingham diocese. Bishop John is a native of Leicester and a priest of our own diocese. Bishop John will work with Archbishop Vincent Nichols in the Archdiocese of Westminster, and will have particular responsibility for the county of Hertfordshire. Please keep him in your prayers.

More about the ordination here and lots of pictures here.

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Monday, 5 September 2011

More on the new translation of the Missal

 I came across the pastoral letter of the new bishop of Aberdeen on the new translation of the Mass today. It contains this passage which I found very helpful:
‘The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.’ In Christ, the Son of God takes on everything human, except sin, and transforms it. And in the Liturgy this mystery of the Incarnation – the Word becoming flesh – lives on among us. Everything speaks of it. When we gather to worship we come together in a building – not usually in any building, though, but in a church, a building dedicated for worship. The ministers who lead our prayer don’t wear just ordinary clothes, but vestments. We stand, sit or kneel, but each of these postures now has a special meaning. We come together to listen to readings – not any readings though, but words inspired by the Holy Spirit, words that are now the word of God. We gather round a table – but not any table, rather a holy table, an altar. We eat and drink – but not any food or drink, rather bread and wine which have become that holiest of things, the Body and Blood of the Lord, his very Self. In the Liturgy, ordinary things are taken up by Christ and the Church and become vehicles of something greater than themselves. And so it is too with the words, the language, we use in prayer. Christianity has always, to some extent, created its own language. It took the words of ancient Israel or the Greco-Roman world and filled them with a new meaning. And so, in the Liturgy, we use words that carry the resonances of a long tradition, words that express our faith, and are rich with many centuries of experience of the God who has spoken to us in Christ. The new translation of the Missal is very aware of this and tries to be loyal to it. And, once again, when these words are sung, they can lift our hearts even more.
And all of this ‘specialness’ is not to turn us into a sect or a ‘holy huddle’. In the Liturgy God comes to us and we approach him. In the Liturgy Christ with his Cross and Resurrection comes to meet us, to change us and to empower us to change the world. Thanks to this meeting with God in the flesh of Christ, the mystery of the Incarnation can continue in our own lives and through us in the whole world, so that in the end the whole of creation will be transformed.
So, let us welcome this new translation with what St Benedict calls a ‘good spirit’. It asks of us a small act of obedience to the Church, a little effort, and in return offers us a fuller understanding of the sacred mysteries. It would be good to read through the new prayers before and after Mass. May they be for all of us a door through which we go to meet the living God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Friday Penance

Yesterday's Bishop's Pastoral Letter referred to the reintroduction of abstinence from eating meat on Fridays from September 16th. The Catholic Communications Network have issued a press release about this. If you go the link you will also find a downloadable document which includes a question and answer section.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Bishop Malcolm's Pastoral Letter

Today Bishop Malcolm writes to us about the new translation of the Roman Missal which we start using this weekend, and about the place of Friday abstinence in our Christian lives.
Click here to read the letter which is read at all Masses in the Diocese of Nottingham this weekend.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Newsletter for 3/4 September - Sunday 23(A)

Click here to read this week's newsletter.

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