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Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

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Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

14th February 2010 – Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year C)

THIS SUNDAY: Life is often about picking our way through opposites – choices and decisions that surround every moment of every day: should I do this or that, choose this way or that way, and so on. Just as there are choices on either side, so there are opposing consequences ­blessings and curses, in the language of the first reading, happiness and woe in the lan­guage of the Gospel. In Saint Luke’s version of the Beati­tudes, we see Jesus setting out very clearly the teaching that life is about choices, and that we must take control, and be responsi­ble for the life we choose, or even the condi­tions of life that we embrace or accept.

FIRST COMMUNION PREPARATION: Preparation takes a week’s break as the children are on half-term. we continue on Wednesday (23 Feb) but this week, the children meet in the Hall. Do continue to the children in your prayers during this time of prep. The children also come together on March 7th for the presentation of the Scriptures

READERS’ NOTES: Copies of the little ‘readers’ pointers’ for each Sunday of Lent are available from the Narthex. If you are a reader, please collect yours.

THE SEASON OF LENT

ASH WEDNESDAY: Lent begins this coming Wednesday – 17th February. Mass will be celebrated with the distribution of ashes at 10.00am and 7.00pm. It is an important beginning to our Lenten journey so do make a note of the times.

DAY OF FASTING & ABSTINENCE: There are now only two ‘official’ days of fasting & abstinence although these are things we are encouraged to practise most especially on a Friday. At the beginning of this Season of Lent there is that honest and humbling invitation to open our hearts to the Lord who seeks to heal us. Fasting should be observed by all aged 18 years and over (up to 60). One full meal and two ‘collations(light meals) adequate to maintain strength. Even though you may be ‘over’ 60, still there is that encouragement to embrace the spirit of fasting whilst still being sensible. We can fast from those little treats and those little extras that we don’t necessarily need. Abstinence is observed by those aged 14 years and older. No meat is to be eaten on these abstinence days.

CAFOD ‘Give it up’ BOXES: CAFOD are once again inviting us to transform the lives of some of the world’s poorest and most hungry through our Lenten ‘giving up’. Whatever we give up may enable someone else to grow this Lent. These boxes are for you to take away and keep at home during Lent. They can come back in at the end of Lent and handed in at the Mass of Holy Thursday. The smallest amount of money can transform and change lives for the better. Next Sunday, the CAFOD Fast Day envelopes will be attached to the newsletter in anticipation of CAFOD Lenten Fast Day on Friday 26th Feb.

WEEKLY CATECHESIS: Our weekly catechesis will begin this coming Wednesday – Ash Wednesday (17th February) as we begin the start of the Season of Lent. After the evening Mass on Ash Wednesday, there will be a short catechesis on the readings for the following Sunday (1st Lent). Do try and make this a real part of your Lenten resolutions. Each Wednesday of Lent the Catechesis will take place from 7.30pm in the hall. All are most welcome.

LENTEN CONFESSIONS: Lent possesses that wonderful characteristic of penance, inviting us to turn back to the Lord. To help us celebrate that return, as well as the two sessions on a Saturday, there will be an opportunity each Wednesday of Lent for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Confessions will take place from 6.30pm each Wednesday before the 7.00pm Mass (beginning 24th Feb). Do make use of this wonderful opportunity to encounter the healing love of the Lord.

LENT SOUP LUNCHES: The first in a season of soup lunches for Lent across the churches takes place here at St Bernadette’s on Friday 26th February. As it is CAFOD Lenten Fast Day it is a great way of tapping into both the Lenten charism of fasting and almsgiving. There’s no cost, just a donation for some of the world’s hungry and poor. The other local churches have picked up what we are doing once again and have taken up the challenge to do likewise so that there is something happening around Lent: Thursday 18 February 12.30  St Nicholas; Friday 26 February at12.30 – St Bernadette; Wednesday 3 March at 12 – 1 pm – Christchurch; Friday 6 March at 12 noon –  Counterslip; Monday 15 March at12.30 – URC; Sunday 28 March (Palm Sunday) at 12 noon here at St Bernadette.

STATIONS OF THE CROSS: Each Sunday afternoon of Lent at 4.00pm (beginning 21st FebruaryNEXT Sunday) we celebrate the Stations of the Cross using a different reflection each week as we journey with the Lord to the Cross and the tomb. We end each Sunday with Benediction. Please do come along if you can.

WALK WITH ME: The little Lenten reflection books are available from the narthex – priced £1. Pick up your copy. There are also some Lenten calendars for the youngsters. Help yourself!

COMMUNITY CHOIR: If you enjoy singing then come and join others at the Community Choir.  Next practise will be on Tuesday 16th February at 7pm at Bridge Farm School with a view to performing a small concert on 17th April in aid of the people of Haiti.  Details on notice board.

PARISH DAY OF RECOLLECTION: A date for your diaries! Fr John Edwards SJ has accepted an invitation to come and lead a parish weekend of prayer and reflection. He will be with us for Saturday May 8th and Sunday 9th May. Fr John is a great writer and speaker on prayer and it is good to be able to have him with us. More details nearer the time but please make room in your diaries for the Saturday, most especially!

YEAR OF PRIESTS: As we have become accustomed to doing on the First Friday of the month, the Blessed Sacrament will be exposed during the day to allow people to come into Church and spend a little time in prayer for our priests. On March 5th, one of the classes from our school will join us for Mass at 10.00am (please note the change of time) to enable them to take part in this opportunity for prayer. The list is in the Narthex for you to sign up for one of those half hour slots.

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