December 4th 2005 – 2nd Sunday of Advent

We continue our journey through the season of Advent as we prepare for Christmas.  Advent is all about preparation, getting ready, waiting in anticipation.  Unfortunately the hectic pace of the few weeks before Christmas squeeze out the real beauty of Advent.  At the heart of Advent is the gift of today, with many new possibilities and a chance for all of us to come closer to God in our own unique way.
Life certainly moves fast particularly during these days  and the build up to Christmas.  Everyone seems to be rushing, time seems to be going faster and the list of things to get done grows longer.  But unless we step aside from all of this and literally stop to see where we fit into the bigger picture, we have failed ourselves.  The sheer speed of life today, can literally choke and block out those beautiful, simple and ordinary moments that no money can buy.  John the Baptist says to us today –  A voice cries in the wilderness  Prepare a way for the Lord, make his paths straight.
Lord, help me to use the coming few weeks of Advent well.  In the middle of all the busyness of the coming few weeks, help me to make time for you.

We remember in our prayers  Anthony Whelan, Windmill Rd.  Joe. O’Riordan, Friar’s Rd., Noreen Cotter, St.Joseph’s Derrynane Rd. and Peter (Ronnie) Fitzgibbon, Windmill Rd., who died during the week and extend our sympathy to their  families

Turner’s Cross Credit Union
The Annual General Meeting of Comhar Creidmheasa Chriost Ri Teoranta will be held in Scoil Chriost Ri (Boys Primary School) on Mon.12th Dec.  at 8pm. Each member is earnestly requested to attended.
The election of 5 Directors, 1 Supervisor and an Auditor will take place at this meeting.  Please bring your passbook for identification

Ministers of the Eucharist,   
can collect their  Rotas for the coming weeks in the sacristy after Mass

Cork City F.C.
We wish the best of luck to Cork City F.C. who play in the Cup Final this Sunday.

Parish Christmas Card
There has been a big demand for the Parish Christmas Card and Christmas Triduum Mass Card  —  available in the Parish Office after Mass today and during the week.
The Christmas Triduum of Masses will be offered on 23, 24, 25 Dec.

Santa to help St. Vincent de Paul Society
Santa, whose real name is St. Nicholas, is probably the best loved saint of children. His feast day is Tuesday Dec. 6th. This week end  he will be here with a basket of letters. In his letter he will tell us to prepare well for the Birthday of Jesus and asks us to bring a specific item the following weekend 10/11 Dec.   and place it in his basket. Santa will deliver your gifts to the members of St. Vincent de Paul who are always helping those in need. Don’t forget to collect your letter today.

Tax Relief on Donations
The Parish has received a cheque for €5,320 and is awaiting a further cheque of €3,490 in tax relief for donations made by PAYE taxpayers in 2001, 2002 and 2003.  We are very grateful to the people who returned the completed forms. 
We are now looking for people to complete the forms in respect of donations made in 2004. The forms are available at the Parish Office and we ask that the completed forms be given to Fr. Kerry.
Where, for example, an individual who pays tax at 42% gives a donation of €400 to the Church in a tax year, the Church will be able to claim a refund of €290 from the Revenue Commissioners., at no cost or trouble to the donor. A minimum annual donation of €250 must be made for the Church to obtain tax relief on the donation.
Please note that these forms should only be completed by PAYE taxpayers. Self assessment individuals can reclaim tax relief on the donations through their own tax return.

Salute to the Heroes of Cork
Held in the City Hall on 22nd Oct. Videos of the Pageant are now on sale €20. Contact  021-4961410 / 086-3200796

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul
Total expenditure in our Parish by the Society last year came to €21,000
This was made up as follows;
Cash Assistance   €13,700
Clothing; €2,500
Education; €500
Home Management; €300
Church Door Collections for the year were €12,500, leaving a short fall of €8,500.  This shortfall is supplemented from Central Funds.
Christmas Church Gate Collection in aid of St. Vincent de Paul will take place  next weekend 10/11th Dec.

This year for Santas Christmas Basket in the Church we request –
In preference to toys donations of food items (non perishable) chocs. biscuits and small items of clothing. We thank you for your continuing support.

Colaiste Chriost Ri Parents Council
Hosts – Christmas Cookery Demonstration with Master Chef Jerome Hurley in Colaiste Chriost Ri.   Wed Dec. 7th 2005 at 7.45 pm
Tickets €10 (including refreshments, raffle, spot prizes) available at Door

Legion of  Mary
There is a Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima in the Parish and if anybody would like to have it in their home in preparation for Christmas the Legionaries would be glad to bring it to your home Phone  4961036 or 4313959

Important dates
17/18th Dec.    Penitential Rites at all the Masses
19th Dec.  The Story of Christmas presented by the Girls of Christ the King Primary School in Christ the King Church
The children will help us to relive the Story of Christmas in a most beautiful way. Proceeds in aid of the School and the Church Restoration Fund.

Questions people ask
Q. Could you please explain for me the connection between St Nicholas and Santa Claus.
A. Klaus is an abbreviated form of Nicholas in German and Santa is a corruption of Sancta, meaning saintly. So, Santa Claus literally means Saint Nicholas. Nicholas was a bishop in Turkey in the fourth century, renowned for his generosity to the poor. One legend relates that he paid the dowry for three girls who were being sold by their father. The custom grew of giving sweets to children on his feast. The sweets eventually became toys. This custom was later linked with Christmas, when we celebrate the generosity of God in giving his Son as the dowry for our redemption. Nicholas’ feast is celebrated on 6 December.
Fr Silvester O’Flynn OFM Cap