22nd March 2020 – 4th Sunday of Lent

The fourth Sunday of Lent, “Laetare (joyful) Sunday,” marks the half way point in our Lenten journey and we begin to look forward to Easter.   The theme of the Mass is Light, the light given to the man born blind while the religious people who thought they knew it all were left in the dark.   Those who feel they know all they need to know are closed to the message of Jesus.  They may be people afflicted with a sort of rigid religiosity, a self- centred false piety, or those who buy into the prevailing secularism and take their cue from the media pundits.   Nowadays there is a so-called rationalism adopted by people who don’t actually think at all, and take their opinions ready made from the opinion shapers of our time.

The poor man born blind knew very little but could hear the message, his heart was open.   Jesus “anoints” his eyes with mud and sends him to bathe in the pool called Siloam.  The man receives his sight from the God who doesn’t see as we do.   We pray that we may be children of light, as St. Paul says to the Christians at Ephesus, that we may see our world in the light of Christ.  May we follow Paul’s advice to us to wake up, so that the light of Christ may shine on us.   We pray that like the man born blind we will be able to turn to Jesus and say, “Lord, I believe.”

Cancellation of Public Masses
For the duration of the Covid-19 Virus crisis, people in the Diocese of Cork and Ross are not bound by the Sunday Obligation to go to Mass, and all public Weekend, Holy Day and weekday Masses are discontinued. Funerals, weddings and baptisms may continue with attendance limited to family members and close friends and never exceeding 100 people.

Live-streaming of Parish Masses
Whilst public Masses may not be celebrated for the duration of the Covid-19 crisis, weekday and Sunday Masses continue in the Church behind closed doors.  These Masses are live-streamed from the church webcam, and can be picked up via the Parish Website at 10.00 am on weekdays, Monday to Saturday and at 12.00 midday on Sundays.  The Webcam will be turned on fifteen minutes before Mass times. The Parish Website is www.turnerscross.com <http://www.turnerscross.com> , to access the Webcam, just click on the following movie camera pictogram in the opening page:

We hope that some people of our parish, while not able to join together physically, will join us spiritually in these Masses.
Note also that Bishop Fintan hopes to celebrate the live-streamed Mass from the Cathedral at 11.30 am each Sunday, available at www.corkcathedral.ie <http://www.corkcathedral.ie> , and that daily Mass is also available on the rte news now channel each weekday morning at 10.30.

Prayer Resources for use whilst Public Mass is not available.
Prayer resources have been added to the diocesan website for people to use when they cannot attend Mass in person as well as when they cannot attend a funeral Mass and sympathise directly with a bereaved family.  Copies of the following Special Prayers are also available on a table at the back of the church.

Praying at home when we cannot attend Mass

Praying for our deceased loved ones at this time of the coronavirus Covid 19 when we cannot attend the Funeral.

Prayers in times when we cannot attend Daily Mass including Prayer for Spiritual Communion
Preventing the spread of the Virus
At the permitted Funeral and Wedding Masses and at Baptisms, we will continue to observe HSE guidance and Bishops’ norms, including:
Shaking hands including at the Sign of Peace is suspended. Alternatives such as a smile, nod or bow are acceptable.

Holy water fonts will not be used.
Holy Communion will be administered into the hands only and NOT onto the tongue. 

Having received Holy Communion, and before and after distributing, the priest and ministers will sanitise their hands.
During Holy Communion only the celebrant shall receive from the Chalice and no one else may drink from the same Chalice – this includes other priests as well as ministers of the Eucharist and members of the congregation.
Collection baskets will not be passed from hand to hand through the congregation.

Further information on the HSE Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) website.
with Holy Oil and dispose of them appropriatFunerals
Attendance at funerals should be restricted to the immediate family and very close friends. Whilst the desire to offer condolences is commendable, during this difficult time condolences can be expressed in the form of a letter, a text message, an e-mail. The Covid-19 crisis will pass and there will be other possibilities for Mass or prayers to be said for those who die during this period. These Masses and prayers will enable people to come the church then and offer their condolences.  All Catholic funeral liturgies will be limited to the funeral Mass, without a removal to the church the evening before. The priest celebrating the funeral Mass will be the only priest officiating.

Sacrament of the sick for the dying (last rites)
It is essential that in anointing the sick, the priest should use a cotton bud or surgical glove for the anointing ely. The rite should be administered while at a distance of 1 metre. It is important to follow recommendations on hand hygiene after the celebration of the Sacrament. The priest must avoid contact with others in the house of the person who is seriously ill.

Parish pastoral calls to homes
Priests are advised against visiting homes at this time because priests themselves may be carriers of the virus without knowing it or the virus may be in the house.


Mothers Day: In spite of the Corona Virus, this Sunday is still Mother’s Day, and we pray God’s blessing on all mothers as we wish them a happy Day.  At the 12.00 midday Mass on this Sunday Prayers will be offered for all our mothers, living and deceased.
A Mother’s Prayer   Lord, here I am immersed in my daily routine of mothering a family, feeding, caring for, consoling, listening to those entrusted to me. May your joy erupt within me to brighten the thousand daily actions woven by the thread of life.  Lord stay with me, and let the little deaths of each day lead me along the path to eternal life.

We pray for John Holland, Doyle Road, Lil Cronin, Capwell Road, and John Bracken, Kilcolman Lawn, who have died.  We extend our sympathy to their families.

The Irish Catholic Newspaper
Copies of The Irish Catholic will continue to be left in the Church for purchase. 


Prayer for our protection
The Irish Bishops ask for prayers for those affected by the Coronavirus.  Placing all our trust in the Lord, and asking Our Lady to intercede for us, we invite everyone to pray these prayers:

From Saint Patrick’s Breastplate:
Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of everyone who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary,
that never was it known
that anyone who fled to your protection,
implored your help,
or sought your intercession
was left unaided.
Inspired with this confidence,
I fly to you,
O Virgin of virgins, my Mother.
To you I come,
before you I stand,
sinful and sorrowful.
O Mother of the Word Incarnate,
despise not my petitions,
but in your mercy,
hear and answer them.