4th January 2015 – 2nd Sunday after Christmas (B)

fresh-startNEW YEAR:                                         The  notion of the need to be able to start afresh, to let by-gones be by-gones is precisely what we celebrate at the redemption Christ has won for us. He comes    to us with the offer of his forgiveness, with the possibility of a new start, a rebirth as we have in todays Gospel.   The past is dead, we can begin anew  The birth of Jesus was a fresh start for the whole of humanity.  The Lord offers us the opportunity to start afresh  through his forgiveness. He offers us the hand of friendship at each gathering at his table when we celebrate the  Eucharist. He offers us the strength and grace to walk towards the good in our new year’s resolutions.

Feast of the Epiphany  Holyday of Obligation. Masses:  Mon.  5th Jan. Vigil Mass 6pm   Tues 6th Jan. Masses 10am & 6pm      This feast of the Epiphany,  is an important one. Just like the wise men we are all searching for meaning and purpose to life. As we make ourimages New Year resolutions, we  pray  for strength and courage on our journey especially when the going is difficult. . As we begin this New Year why not check on all that’s good and positive in our lives. This is a great starting point. We can use all that’s good and positive as areas of growth and potential. When this happens the negative begins to be squeezed out. The message of the Gospels reminds us that it won’t all happen today, but most certainly will over time, if we make the effort.

Important Dates 2015

Blessing of Children: 11th January                                                                                   World Day of Prayer for Sick 11th Feb                                                                               
Ash Wednesday:18th February
                                                                                          First Confessions: 3rd March
                                                                                               Easter Sunday:  5th April                                                                                                 
Parish Confirmations:  22nd April                                                                                       First Holy Communions:  16th May

Blessing of Children:    This year on the Feast of the Baptism of the Lord   Sunday next 11th Jan. at the 12 noon Mass  there will be a special Blessing for all the Children who were baptised in our parish in the past year. We will light again the candle that was lit at baptism.  A welcome to parents and infants, Godparents & Grandparents. We thank the Parish Assembly who are contacting the families and our  Baptismal Ministers for their help and commitment during the year in visiting the families and helping them prepare for Baptism. As we begin the new year we will pray God’s blessing on all your families.

Deaths : We remember in our prayers Nora Lynch, O’Connell Cres., Joe O’Reilly, Green Hills Estate and Maria Kenneally, Windmill Rd.  who died recently.  We extend our sympathy & prayers to their families.

Catholic Newspapers: The Irish Catholic and  The Universe & Catholic Times  are on sale each weekend   We encourage you to keep up to date on faith issues by purchasing a copy each week.  If you have not received your Parish Calendar some copies are available at the back of the Church

pa4253cPerson of the Year:  A year ago, Pope Francis’ photo adorned the  cover of Time magazine as their person of the year. His personal humility and simplicity, his common-sense rhetoric seasoned with homespun charm has captured the imagination of Catholics, non-Catholics and even nonbelievers. Acutely aware of the power of simple language and of images. “The National Catholic Reporter of America”  has chosen Pope Francis as the  Person of the  Year 2014.                                                                              In a short time Francis has acted on his own words to take the church out of the sanctuary and into the streets. The first teaching document of his pontificate “The Joy of the Gospel”, has established the priorities of his papacy, speaking for the poor of this world where they are most vulnerable.  By giving the Synod such importance and by appointing his Council of Cardinals and meeting them regularly, Francis is reshaping how a pope governs. He remains a beacon of hope in a world beset by challenges and woes. Later  this month  He will visit Sri Lanka and the Philippines. Let us keep Him always in our prayers.

“Another fresh new year is here . . .
                                                                        Another year to live!
                                                                                                           To banish worry, doubt, and fear,
                                                                                          To love and laugh and give!

This bright new year is given me
                                                                                           To live each day with zest . . .                                                                                             
To daily grow and try to be
                                                                                                   My highest and my best!

I have the opportunity
                                                                                                        Once more to right some wrongs,
                                                                                     To pray for peace, to plant a tree,
                                                                                      And sing more joyful songs!”

William Arthur Ward