We would like to wish all our readers the joy and peace of Christmas. If you are reading this far from home we want you to know that you are very specially in our thoughts and prayers. All our Christmas Masses are offered for our parishioners at home and abroad. A special greeting to those who are spending Christmas away from family and friends.
Christmas Eve:. 6pm (The O'Connor /OMahony Families will lead us in the singing of carols). 10 pm: Mass & Blessing of Crib. (Parish Choir).
Christmas Day: 9am, 10.30am Children Mass (Parish Choir), 12 noon. The O'Sullivan Familiy will lead us in the singing of carols
Please note there will be no 6pm Mass on Sat. 25th Dec.
Feast of the Holy Family Sunday 26th December
Masses: 9am, 10.30am & 12 noon
Last year I had the privilege of being in the Holy Land with our Parish Pilgrimage, it was truly a memorable experience. We spent our last two days in Bethlehem and said Mass down in the cave near where Jesus was born, that evening we went to the Shepherds Field where the Angles came to announce the birth of Jesus. I has to pinch myself to realize that it was here it all began, the surroundings were so humble. Stop for a moment and reflect on it. God become man; divine become human. What a wonderful, joyful mystery it is. I will always remember Christmas time in our Diocesan Mission in Peru it was as near to what it was like in Bethlehem on that first Christmas night – poverty, happiness, simplicity and love. At the root of all that happiness, sharing and enjoyment is that new-born baby in his mothers arms. Today in the town of David a saviour has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. In our searching for new life and hope after all the recent revelations and cutbacks, may our way forward be full of hope inspired by Jesus, born in poverty in a cave in Bethlehem.
We welcome all who are home for this special time, enjoy these days with your families. The Bereaved you are in our thoughts and your loved ones are remembered in our Masses and prayers. Fr. Charlie joins me in wishing you all a happy, holy, peaceful and safe Christmas.
Grace before Dinner on Christmas Day:
on this Christmas day we give thanks that
Jesus, your Son, has come into our world
bringing us gifts of peace and joy.
Bless us as we sit down together at this table
for our Christmas meal.
Bless the food we share and help us to
remember those who are hungry.
Be with our neighbours and our friends,
those who are lonely, sick, our loved ones
away from home.
We pray that our departed loved ones
may now sit at your table in heaven.
May the joy of this feast give us strength
and light, now and in the days ahead.
We ask this prayer through Christ, Our Lord,
Feast of the Holy Family
This feast always occurs on the Sunday after Christmas. The Holy Family like most families, had it's trials and joys. As Catholics, we can look to the Holy Family as a role model. They have qualities that make a family unit work. They also tell us that you don't need to be perfect to be a family. Joseph and Mary had faith in each other and love to build the family. As we see in todays readings, for a family to work, there needs to be a few main characteristics. Love is of course the most important one. Love is the glue that keeps families together. The love between a husband and wife is so important. Love embraces trust and safety. A family without love is not going to be happy. Children should respect their parents. Mutual respect makes relationships comfortable and easier in the long run. Showing respect and love takes knowledge and experience. Children learn these in families by making mistakes along the way. It's a growing process that even Jesus had to go sthrough.
We give you thanks Lord God,
who has blessed us
with life and love.
You have given us the gift of family.
Help us to nurture and protect,
to guide and to love each other.
Through the intercession of the Holy Family,
Jesus, Mary and Joseph protect us.
Give us wisdom and courage joy and
faithfulness in responding to our
special vocation as a Christian family,
so that we may help each other to grow
in the grace of God. Amen.