December 20th 2009 – 4th Sunday of Advent

Greatest Gift
In  a mission school in Peru near the coast, a young boy listened carefully as the teacher explained why we give gifts at Christmas.  
“It’s to express our joy and gratitude at the birth of Christ, and to show our
desire to have love for one another,” the teacher explained.
Christmas came and the young lad offered a gift to the teacher, a lovely colored sea-shell.  
The teacher was touched.  She asked where he had got it, and the boy explained how he had walked two miles to a coast to choose this shell for her.  
"It’s truly beautiful.  I am really grateful, but you shouldn’t have walked so far,” the teacher said. The boy’s eyes brightened and he gave a big smile  
“Long Walk Part of Gift!”

Carol Concert:
Our thanks to all who were involved in Carol Concert organised by the Parish Assembly last Tuesday.   To Paula Murphy and the Parish Choir, The Teachers,  the Choirs and Pupils from Scoil Chríost Rí & Christ King Girls NS.  and the Pupils from Christ King Girls Secondary and Colaiste Chríost Ri who were the narrators and soloist.  It was a great night and got us all in the right spirit for the Feast we are about to celebrate.  Well done to all.

Christmas Penitential Services
This weekend 19/20th Dec. after the Masses. A number of priests will be available for Confessions.  We have an ideal opportunity of preparing for the birthday of Jesus. We come together in faith as a community to celebrate God's forgiveness. None of us is without sin. We are all in need of forgiveness. God knows that deep down in our hearts we want to turn back to him. God offers us this most wonderful gift, that is, the assurance that no matter how big our sins are, no matter how far we have strayed away from his way, his forgiveness is there for us all – what a gift,

Christmas Masses
Christmas Eve:. 24th Dec.: 6pm (The O'Connor /O’Mahony 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.

Christmas Triduum
The Triduum Masses will be offered be offered on 23rd, 24th & 25th Dec.  Cards available at Parish Office

Like other years would you like to donate a Red Poinsettia Pot Plant to decorate the altar for Christmas. Many thanks to those who have donated plants.

We remember in our prayers Mimi Clifford. Congress Rd. and Ashok Bhatti who died during the week.   We extend our sympathy to their families.   May they rest in  peace.

Visitation of Sick & Housebound:  
Fr. Kerry will visit the sick of his area on Mon. 22nd Dec.

Support of the priests of the Parish
The collection on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day is for the support of the priests of the Parish. There will be only one collection at each Mass.

The Irish in the Holy land
This Wed 23rd Dec. Fr. Jerome Murphy-O’Connor based in Jerusalem will be appearing on Nation Wide  RTE 1 at 7pm  with Mary Kennedy and Michael Ryan  “The Irish in the Holy Land”

Flood Victims Appeal:
If you would like to contribute there is a box at the exit doors. 

Christmas gifts with a difference.
There has been a great response to the Gift with a difference.    You can purchase one of the gifts listed below and get the card to give to a friend instead of a gift. They are available at the back of the Church.  Christmas Gift Range :School Lunch (for a year) €10, The Gift of Chickens €15, Gift of a Vegetable Garden €25. The Gift of Life-Saving Food €35. Gift of a Goat  €45.  This Christmas change someone's life for the better with a Trócaire Gift. Taking a moment to think of others is what Christmas is all about.

Advent Readings
The scripture readings that have been selected during Advent and Christmas are full of meaning and symbolism. While they were written many years ago they still bring with them a meaning and relevance to the complex world we live in. These scripture readings talk about darkness, turmoil, confusion, despair, fear, depression, loneliness, pain, abandonment and uncertainty. But from all of this emerges light, hope, peace, certainty, healing, comfort, energy, new beginnings, relevance and meaning. These scripture readings are not fairytales or make believe stories. They are real and relevant. They also remind us just how important Christmas is on our own spiritual journey.

"In all our preparations, grant us, Lord, hearts rich in love, hearts that search in love, enriching the gift that is given."