16th December 2012 – 3rd Sunday of Advent (C)

Lighting the 3rd Candle of Wreath
Prayer:  (Pink Candle the Joy & Shepherd Candle) 
O Lord We beseech you to listen to our prayers,  and by the grace of your coming enlighten our darkened minds: You who live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever.  Amen. 

Joyful Sunday, the opening words of the Mass are: 'Rejoice in the Lord always'.  As we light the pink candle on the Advent Wreath we are invited to rejoice and be glad for the goodness we experience in life; despite budget gloom, we need to value the positive aspects of living.  As we approach the feast of Christmas, we could well reflect on the giftedness of family, friends, neighbours and voluntary workers.  For some, this Christmas will be a time of sadness or setback in their living situation.  However, being Christ-like enables us to be enriched by our caring for one another.  The question posed to John in today’s Gospel “what can we do” is very relevant for each of us. The Advent road – the less travelled road – is making time to prioritise what is essential and important in life.  It could be the road to confession next weekend, or going out of our way to help those less fortunate than we are.
“the one thing that the greed of the world cannot conquer is the generous heart”.

Confessions: This week – Thursday, Friday and Saturday after 10am Mass. (Next week Confessions will be heard on Christmas Eve after 10am Mass and from 11.30am)

Christmas Penitential Services
Next weekend 22nd and 23rd December after 6pm vigil, 10am & 12 noon 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. There is no sin beyond the power of God's forgiveness. God offers us this most wonderful gift, that is, the assurance that no matter how we have failed his forgiveness is there for us all.

Parish Christmas & Triduum Cards
The Parish Christmas Card and Christmas Triduum Mass Card – available in the Parish Office after Mass today and during the week after the 10am Mass.  The Triduum of Masses will be offered on 23, 24, 25 Dec.

Mass times: Christmas Eve 6pm & 10pm. Christmas Day: 9am 10am & 12 noon (note extra Mass at 9am)

Death: Our prayers & sympathy to the family of Deirdre Lynch, Browningstown Park, who died recently.  May she be at peace with God.

Exposition of the Most Blessed Sacrament after the 10am on Wednesday Mass until 11am.

Visitation of Sick: Fr. Kerry & Fr Billy will visit the sick and housebound with Holy Communion on Thursday and Friday 20th and 21st Dec.

Christmas gifts with a difference.
There has been a very good response to the Gift with a difference. You can purchase one of the Trocaire gifts  and get the card to sent or give to a friend. They are available at the back of the Church from members of the Parish Assembly.  This Christmas change someone's life for the better with a Trócaire Gift.

Parish Assembly: Members who do not have email may collect the minutes of the Meeting of 10th December from the Sacristy this weekend.

Christmas Concert Supporting Ballyphehane & District Pipe Band at The Ballyphehane Community Centre  on Sun. 16th Dec. at 7pm  performers include  – Louise O’Sullivan, Carol Kennedy, Michael Lawlor, City of Cork Male Voice Choir, Chorus of Cork Opera  & The Ballyphehane & District Pipe Band.  Tickets only €10

Credit Union The Annual General Meeting of Comhar Creidmheasa Chriost Ri Teoranta will be held in Bunscoil Chriost Ri (Old Boys School Hall ) on this Môn. 17th Dec. at 8.00 pm.

Special Blood Donor Clinic at St. Finbarr's Hospital, Douglas, Road, Sunday 16th December from 10.00 – 13.00.  Maintaining an adequate Blood Supply is always difficult at Christmas.

Year of Faith

Activities completed to date include the “Life in the Spirit” seminars,  our series of Biblical Reflections on the Eucharist and the Advent Triduum of Vespers and Benediction. The Parish Assembly is actively considering special events and activities for the remainder of the Year of Faith, and these will include a Turner’s Cross Alpha course, a Parish “Presentation Pilgrimage” to the birthplace of Nano Nagle and a Lenten Retreat, as well as special Liturgies, study programmes etc.