Pope Benedict

Spiritual Testament of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

The Holy See has released the Spiritual Testament of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, dated 29 August 2006.

My spiritual testament

When, at this late hour of my life, I look back on the decades I have wandered through, I see first of all how much reason I have to give thanks. Above all, I thank God Himself, the giver of all good gifts, who has given me life and guided me through all kinds of confusion; who has always picked me up when I began to slip, who has always given me anew the light of his countenance. In retrospect, I see and understand that even the dark and arduous stretches of this path were for my salvation and that He guided me well in those very stretches.

I thank my parents, who gave me life in difficult times and prepared a wonderful home for me with their love, which shines through all my days as a bright light until today. My father’s clear-sighted faith taught us brothers and sisters to believe and stood firm as a guide in the midst of all my scientific knowledge; my mother’s heartfelt piety and great kindness remain a legacy for which I cannot thank her enough. My sister has served me selflessly and full of kind concern for decades; my brother has always paved the way for me with the clear-sightedness of his judgements, with his powerful determination, and with the cheerfulness of his heart; without this ever-new going ahead and going along, I would not have been able to find the right path.

I thank God from the bottom of my heart for the many friends, men and women, whom He has always placed at my side; for the co-workers at all stages of my path; for the teachers and students He has given me. I gratefully entrust them all to His goodness. And I would like to thank the Lord for my beautiful home in the Bavarian foothills of the Alps, in which I was able to see the splendour of the Creator Himself shining through time and again. I thank the people of my homeland for allowing me to experience the beauty of faith time and again. I pray that our country will remain a country of faith and I ask you, dear compatriots, not to let your faith be distracted. Finally, I thank God for all the beauty I was able to experience during the various stages of my journey, but especially in Rome and in Italy, which has become my second home.

I ask for forgiveness from the bottom of my heart from all those whom I have wronged in some way.

What I said earlier of my compatriots, I now say to all who were entrusted to my service in the Church: Stand firm in the faith! Do not be confused! Often it seems as if science – on the one hand, the natural sciences; on the other, historical research (especially the exegesis of the Holy Scriptures) – has irrefutable insights to offer that are contrary to the Catholic faith. I have witnessed from times long past the changes in natural science and have seen how apparent certainties against the faith vanished, proving themselves not to be science but philosophical interpretations only apparently belonging to science – just as, moreover, it is in dialogue with the natural sciences that faith has learned to understand the limits of the scope of its affirmations and thus its own specificity.For 60 years now, I have accompanied the path of theology, especially biblical studies, and have seen seemingly unshakeable theses collapse with the changing generations, which turned out to be mere hypotheses: the liberal generation (Harnack, Jülicher, etc.), the existentialist generation (Bultmann, etc.), the Marxist generation. I have seen, and see, how, out of the tangle of hypotheses, the reasonableness of faith has emerged and is emerging anew. Jesus Christ is truly the Way, the Truth, and the Life – and the Church, in all her shortcomings, is truly His Body.

Finally, I humbly ask: pray for me, so that the Lord may admit me to the eternal dwellings, despite all my sins and shortcomings. For all those entrusted to me, my heartfelt prayer goes out day after day.

Benedictus PP XVI.

8th January 2023, Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

 

On the Feast of the The Baptism of Jesus Fr Noel writes :

The Origins of Baptism

The practice of Baptism goes back to the very origins of the Christian Church. First there was the ministry of John the Baptist. The ritual washing at that stage was only a prefiguring of the Christian sacrament. John’s ritual was all about forgiveness of sin in order to escape the wrath of God at the end of the world, which many people of the time thought was imminent. Jesus was baptised by John to identify with sinful humanity, though he was without sin himself.  As a result, from then on, the ritual began to have a new meaning. The heavens were opened; the Father spoke; the Holy Spirit descended (Mk 1:9-11). The ritual was radically changed: the presence of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit make it a Trinitarian experience.

The basic reality of Baptism lies in the fact that people are not born Christians; they have to become Christians. Baptism is the beginning of that process. It is not a once off, an end in itself; it is the gateway to Christianity and the door of the Church. 

St Paul gives us a profound and mysterious notion of thegrace of Baptism. For the Apostle the death and resurrection of Christ form the watershed from which all the graces of salvation come to us (Rom 4:25). Our Baptism is our first immersion in that mystery of Christ’s death and resurrection (Rom 6:3-6). As Paul understands it, we share in Christ’s death by dying to our old selves, and we are said to rise with him by coming to share in the graces of his risen life. There is further evidence of this understanding of baptism in the Pauline corpus; it occurs in Colossians: ‘When you were buried with him in baptism, you were also raised with him through faith in the power of God, who raised him from the dead’ (Colossians 2:12). Full immersion in water is the symbol of entering into the death of Christ and rising with him. The term baptism is derived from the Greek baptizein, meaning to immerse, to plunge.

Here in the parish of Christ the King we celebrate infant baptisms on the first and third Saturday of the month, at 4.30 pm. In preparation for that important event we have a meeting with the parents in the Parish Centre about a fortnight before the ceremony. This gives parents the opportunity to reflect on the decision they are taking in relation to their child. Baptism should be requested when parents want to raise their child in the Catholic faith. Just because it is customary to have a baby baptised is not sufficient reason to apply for the sacrament of baptism. As a community we pray that the sacrament of baptism celebrated here in 2023 will be a genuine initiation of a new Christian.

 

Christ the King Parish Baptism Team:

Olive Kenny, Peggy Cronin and Fr Noel. Should you wish to be a member of the Baptism Team, just let us know.

 

Pope Benedict

Archbishop Eamon Martin speaks about the late Pope Benedict:

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI was a person of deep spirituality and prayer, an outstanding apostle of Christ.  With his great capacity to listen combined with a personal, discreet charm, the late pope was able to win people to Christ wherever he was: during the World Youth Day celebrations, he attracted the attention of thousands of young people; his encouragement for the World Days of the Sick, World Meetings, and his many travels around the world and meetings with other religious leaders, politicians and academics. 

Requiescat in pace

Sacrament of Penance Part III Examination of Conscience

Sacrament of Penance/Confession Part III

 This is one possible model for an examination of conscience: it is based on scripture

Jesus said: ‘You will love the Lord your God with all your heart…’

  • Is my heart set on God, so that I really love him above all things?
  • Am I open to his presence?
  • Do I listen to his Word in the readings? To the teaching of the Church?
  • What place has prayer in my life?
  • Is the Eucharist (Mass) the centre of my Christian life?
  • Do I attend Mass on Sundays and Holydays of Obligation?
  • Do I allow the Lord to be the Lord, or do I try to be the Lord myself?
  • Do I cling to my will, my wants, my ways?
  • Have I love and reverence for the name of God?
  • Am I ashamed to witness to my faith in God in my daily life?
  • Do I rebel against taking up the Cross in my life?
  • Do I turn to God only when I am in need?

Jesus said: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself…’

  • Have I a genuine love for my neighbour?
  • Am I well-disposed, able to forgive offences?
  • Do I judge without mercy, thought and word?
  • Do I speak ill of others? Do I slander?
  • Am I intolerant, envious, hot-tempered?
  • Do I take care of the poor, the sick, the defenceless?
  • Am I sincere and honest in my dealings with others?
  • Have I been the cause of another’s committing sin?
  • In my family life, have I contributed to the well-being and happiness of the rest of the family by patience and genuine love?
  • Do I exercise responsible parenthood according to the teachings of the Church?
  • Do I care for and respect the environment in which I live?
  • Do I seek the well-being of others?
  • Do I think enough about those who are less fortunate?
  • Am I a spectator before people’s problems, or do I help?
  • Do I despise those of another creed, colour or opinion?
  • Am I respectful of other people’s property?
  • Have I abused someone’s property or stolen another’s goods?
  • Have I ever abused a minor?
  • Do I forgive those who sin against me?
  • Do I do my duty as a citizen?
  • Have I failed to report abuse to the statutory authorities?

Jesus said: ‘Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect’

  • Do I truly live as a Christian and give good example to others?
  • Have I gone against my conscience out of fear or hypocrisy?
  • Have I participated in things which offend both Christian and human decency?
  • Am I too concerned about myself, my health, my success?
  • Do I go to excess in matters of food and drink?
  • Have I kept my senses and my whole body pure and chaste as a temple of the Holy Spirit?
  • Do I bear grudges; do I contemplate revenge?
  • Do I share my possessions with the less fortunate?
  • Do I take offence too easily?
  • Do I use the gift of time well?
  • Am I able to forgive myself?
  • Do I try to be humble and bring peace?

 

Sacrament of Penance Part II

How to go to Confession?

  1. In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
  2. It is ———— months/years since my last Confession.
  3. These are my sins……
  4. The priest suggests a penance which may be a prayer or an act of charity (the purpose of this penance is to underline the seriousness of our Confession and our resolve – with God’s grace – not to sin again.
  5. Act of Sorrow: Two suggested Forms:

First Form: O my God, I am sorry for all my sins because they offend you who are so good and, with your help, I will not sin again. Amen

Second Form: O my God, I thank you for loving me I am sorry for all my sins, for not loving others and not loving you. Help me to live like Jesus and not to sin again. Amen

  1. Priest gives the absolution and says: ‘Go in peace’. The response is: ‘Thanks be to God’

The Seal of Confession

According to Roman Catholic Canon Law, “The sacramental seal is inviolable; therefore it is absolutely forbidden for a confessor to betray in any way a penitent in words or in any manner and for any reason.” (983 §1)

Priests may not reveal what they have learned during confession to anyone, even under the threat of their own death or that of others. For a priest to break confidentiality would lead to automatic excommunication, the lifting of which is reserved to the Holy See —in fact, to the Pope himself (Code of Canon Law, 1388 §1). It is presumed such a breach could be forgiven only with the lifting of the authority of that priest to ever hear confessions again, and a requirement that the priest undertake an extended period of penance, perhaps in a monastery.

 Recognition by civil authorities

In a criminal matter, a priest may encourage the penitent to surrender to authorities. However, this is the extent of the leverage they wield. They may not directly or indirectly disclose the matter to civil authorities themselves. The doctrine of priest-penitent privilege is respected to varying degrees by the laws of different nations.

Sacrament of Penance Part I

The Sacrament of Penance (or Confession) is one of the great gifts of the Catholic Church. To get the most from this sacrament it is essential to prepare well. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is above all an act of God’s love; it is a personal moment in a relationship of love with God. It is not a routine to be gone through but very much part of the personal renewal that takes place in each person, especially at Christmas and Easter.

We are invited in the light of God’s love:

  • to recognise the sinfulness in our lives
  • to have a true sorrow for our sins
  • a firm intention to avoid them in the future

These elements are essential to a proper and meaningful celebration of the Sacrament.

Sin is not merely a series of failures. It is also a sharing in what is really negative and sometimes evil:

  • unbelief, indifference, selfishness
  • violence, contempt for the weak, eroticism
  • racism, neglect of the poor
  • greed, wastefulness
  • pride and a sense of superiority

Every sin, in one way or another, has a community dimension. It is something which tarnishes the Body of Christ, the Christian Community.

Every sin ought to arouse in us feelings of humble regret and a confident request for pardon.

27th November 2022, FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT

Fr Noel’s Bulletin:

Happy New Year!

It might seem strange to wish you ‘Happy New Year’, when we are still at the end of November. But that is precisely what is happening today: we are beginning a new Church year, also called the start of a new liturgical year. So ‘Happy New Year’. New beginnings are always good; they are opportunities to start again in all sorts of ways.

Advent is the season which opens the new Church year. It comes from a Latin word meaning ‘coming’ and refers to the coming of Christ in different ways. There is the obvious coming of Christ at Christmas but there is also the coming of Christ to each of us every day in a myriad of ways, through prayer, Holy Communion, through other people. And then there is the coming of Christ at the end of time. So, Advent is not just about Christmas. In fact, the beginning of Advent has more to do with the coming of Christ at the end of time. So, we will let that be our focus today.

Father in Heaven, … increase our longing for Christ our Saviour and give us the strength to grow in love, that the dawn of His coming may find us rejoicing in His presence and welcoming the light of His truth.

 

Eucharistic Adoration

 

 

We will have Eucharistic adoration on the Thursdays of Advent after the morning Mass until 11.00 am.

 

 

Goodbye to Fr Billy

 

The night for Fr Billy will take place

in Nemo on Friday, 9th December,

at 8.00 pm.

 

 

Parish Ministries

The Annual Mass for all involved in ministry and service of the parish will take place in the Chapel of St Finbarr’s Hospital on Tuesday, 6th December, at 8.00 pm. It will be celebrated by newly-ordained, Fr Ronan Sheehan.

 

Christmas Cards (including shared Mass Cards) are available from this weekend at the office inside the front door of the Church.

 

Advent Wreath

This is a German custom of lighting a candle on the first Sunday of Advent and, then, an additional candle on subsequent Sundays. Three of the candles are purple, while the candle lit on the third Sunday of Advent is pink, indicating that Christ is near (Gaudete Sunday).

 

The Jesse Tree

The Jesse Tree is a way of reflecting on the key people who prefigure the coming (adventus) of Christ. The symbols for the Jesse Tree have been divided over the four weeks of Advent.

Week One:

The Sun and the Moon represent CREATION

The Tree and the Apple symbols represent ADAM & EVE

The Ark and the Dove symbols represent NOAH

The Sword represents ABRAHAM

 

Recent Deaths

We pray for Eddie McNally, Derrynane Rd, and Jim Alwell,  Railway Place, who have died. We sympathise with their families.