Since Advent 2019 we have been listening to extracts from the Gospel according to St. Matthew on the Sundays of ‘Ordinary Time’. Up to the 1960’s, and the revision of so much Church practice brought about by the Second Vatican Council, (1962 – 65)
Today’s First Reading is taken from the prophet Second Isaiah. It begins : “Thus says the Lord to His Anointed , to Cyrus , whom He has taken by His right hand to subdue nations before him.” The same ‘Cyrus’ had the following words inscribed on his tomb : “O mortal , I am Cyrus , son of Cambyses. I established the Persian Empire and ruled over all Asia. Do not grudge me my monument.”
The normal practice of handing out forms for you to include the ‘Holy Souls’ to be prayed for during November cannot be followed this year. Once again, I will ask about the possibility of devising a Form that can be included in this weekly website information update.
With news of ever-increasing numbers of people being tested positive for Covid 19 throughout the UK – BUT, not in our part of the world, which all the more reason why we should continue to act sensibly and follow the guidelines and legislation, even though at times it appears wasteful to clean the churches after every Mass, using lots of materials that have to disposed of immediately – and most certainly not re-used. In the long run, surely it’s a minimal price to pay to keep us all safe?
With news of more ‘lock-downs’ and more restrictions on social gatherings and travel. Whatever can be next? The only certainty is that we are in for a protracted period of ‘living-with-the-virus’ and having to act sensibly, safely and seriously.
With even further limitations on activity being introduced in order to combat the pandemic more effectively – at least , that is the expectation , and we continue to do our best to keep everyone safe.
So, we have another ‘tweaking’ of the rules by the Government with regard to ‘Covid’ containment instructions; and listening to any number of people, the majority of folk express the opinion that restrictions are going to become more stringent before they get ‘better’ – whatever that may mean in the new world that this pandemic is forcing us to inhabit.
At the time of writing, there has been no relaxation in the regulations with regard to the opening of our churches, and so the measures we have taken at St. Mary’s and St. Paul’s, for the safety of all concerned, continue to apply in all their vigour.