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Welcome to the Catholic Parish of Stamford Saint ... Pope Saint Pius X who reinvigorated and gave...

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  • Welcome to the Catholic Parish of Stamford

    Saint Mary and Saint Augustine The Presbytery, 13 Broad Street, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 1PG Telephone: (01780) 762010

    Parish Priest: Father Simon Gillespie Mobile: 07760 372105 Email: [email protected] Deacons: Reverend Charles West-Sadler (retired); Reverend Robert S Dawson (retired)

    Parish Secretary: Lauren Senior Telephone: (01780) 762010 Email: [email protected] Parish Safeguarding Representative: Tony Williams Telephone: 01780 756456 Email: [email protected]

    Parish Director of Music: Ruth Proctor Mobile: 07826 017487 Email: [email protected] Parish Hall Manager: Anna Barwell Mobile: 07789 283140 Email: [email protected]

    Parish Primary School: Saint Augustine’s Catholic Voluntary Academy, Stamford (01780) 762094 Part of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Nottingham Diocesan Website: www.dioceseofnottingham.uk

    Nottingham Roman Catholic Diocesan Trustees Company Number: 7151646 Charity Number: 1134449

    Fourth

    22nd and 23rd June 2019 : Corpus et Sanguis Christi The Body and Blood of Christ

    I’m sure almost all of us have happy memories of the day we made our First Holy Communion; whether this was as a child, or later in our life, it was a day marking the culmination of a journey of preparation, longing and expectancy; finally being able

    to fully participate in the Mass and receive Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Certainly for those children in our parish who will be making their First Holy Communion day in a few weeks’ time, it will be a day to remember for many years, and such occasions are a reminder to each one of us of the time when we, too, were walking the path which is currently theirs. To receive the Eucharist is the greatest gift that God has given to us, one which (unlike the other sacraments of initiation)

    we are invited to receive again and again, almost as often as we come to Mass (we may receive the Eucharist no more than twice on any one day, even if we go to Mass a third time; cf Code of Canon Law 917). However, up until the early part of the twentieth century the frequent reception of Holy Communion was rare, and it was Pope Saint Pius X who reinvigorated and gave official sanction to the frequent – indeed daily – reception of Holy Communion. It’s perhaps strange to think that, for many years, people would faithfully go to Mass, but not receive Communion. To most of us, today, the reception of Communion at Mass is not only the high point of the Mass, but also of our week’s prayer. To gain an understanding of the sacrament of the Eucharist we can start in no better place that Saint John’s Gospel, chapter six, and especially verse 35: ‘I am the bread of life. No one who comes to me will ever hunger; no one who believes in me will ever thirst.’ We hear these familiar words often at Mass, and in hymns, and might even use them in our prayer life; they are so utterly profound, linking as they

  • do the person of Jesus to the food for eternal life which he leaves for us. In the other three gospels, the synoptics of Saints Matthew, Mark and Luke, we have accounts of the Last Supper, at which Jesus explained in different words the gift of the Eucharist that he was leaving for his disciples, and indeed for all of us. ‘This is my body given for you . . . this cup is the new covenant in my blood poured out for you’ (Luke 22:19- 20, and cf Matthew 26:26-28 and Mark 14:22-24). However the earliest written account of this Eucharistic theology comes not from the gospels but from the letters of Saint Paul; in his first letter to the Corinthians, chapter 11, verses 23-27, he describes very simply the offering of Jesus which we recognise immediately as the same offering we see made every time we go to Mass. What was being described in the very first years of Christianity is still a reality for us in our own time.

    All of this is very familiar to us, and yet at the same time there is the mystery: what does happen at Mass? What is the Eucharist? We know that bread and wine are brought to the priest at the offertory of the Mass, and that through his actions this everyday food and drink becomes really Jesus, present amongst us. No longer are bread and wine on the altar, but Jesus is there, ‘his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity’ (Catechism 1413). The actions of the priest are no mere historical re-enactment of the Last Supper; rather, that bloodless sacrifice of Jesus, which prefigured his bloody sacrifice on the Cross, is made real again for us, in our midst. This is called the anamnesis, the re-making present. This happens through the power of the Holy Spirit, working in the priest, who is invoked during the Eucharistic Prayer to hallow our offering, the epiclesis. These two actions taken together, the anamnesis and epiclesis, transubstantiate the bread and wine; the bread and wine are no longer present, instead, Jesus is with us.

    Following from this, we can see why we give such honour to the Blessed Sacrament, for we are honouring not just a sacrament, but God himself. We genuflect not when we just enter a church, but rather when we are in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament. We make time to adore Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament through our periods of exposition – worship of God on the altar. We celebrate this devotion in our parish each week on Thursday evenings following Mass, and Saturday mornings at 9.00am, and all who are able are encouraged to participate. And we honour God by making sure that we are in a state of grace before we come to Holy Communion, in other words, we should receive the sacrament of Confession before Communion if we are aware of any grave sin in our life, or make a perfect act of contrition before Communion, if we are unable to receive Confession in time, with the resolution of receiving sacramental Confession as soon as possible afterwards.

    The Eucharist is the ‘source and summit’ (Lumen Gentium, 11) of our Christian lives; we begin from Christ on our Christian journey, and, strengthened by his heavenly food, it is to Him that we return.

  • Presbytery Safety

    Work is in progress in the presbytery so take care by the building site when going into the parish hall. Please note that a temporary footpath has been laid over the lawn to enable safer access into the parish hall. Take particular care around this area, and around the ‘compound’ which has been established by the front wall. Remember to put any post into the post-box in the church porch, or pop into the parish office in the front half of the parish hall. Thank you for your continuing patience whilst this building and refurbishment work is ongoing.

    Changes to Mass times this Week and next Week

    Father Simon will be at the Lourdes Pilgrimage Preparation Day on Sunday, and so Father Michael Gilligan will celebrate those Sunday Masses. Mass on Tuesday will be celebrated at 9.00am in our parish primary school, Saint Augustine’s Catholic Voluntary Academy is on Kesteven Road, set back from the houses, at PE9 1SR. On Friday Cardinal Nichols has asked all the priests of England and Wales to concelebrate Mass in Westminster Cathedral, celebrating the solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus whilst also marking the 450th anniversary of the founding of the English Seminary in Douai.

    Forthcoming Events in our parish, community and diocese

    Leicestershire Active Catholic Youth presents One Way Jesus a workshop-afternoon, and evening Mass, for young people on Sunday 23rd June from 4.30pm at Saint Mary’s church, South Wigston LE18 4PG.

    Sacramental Preparation continues on Thursday 27th June at 6.00pm in the parish hall.

    Saint Augustine’s school Summer Fayre will be held on Saturday 29th June from 12.00noon until 3.00pm in the school and grounds. All welcome!

    Opening up to Celtic Spirituality (retreat day) will be given by Father Ted Mullins IC at the Rosmini Centre on Saturday 29th June – further details from 01509 813078 or [email protected]

    Celebrating 50 years of the Briars Catholic Youth Retreat Centre over the weekend of 29th and 30th June. See the poster in the porch for more details, including information about the 5-A-Side football tournament, or visit www.ndcys.com for

  • fuller details. The Centre was founded by Father Paul Klee, so we have a connection in our parish with this pioneering in initiative 50 years ago! There’s also an appeal to sponsor rooms in the centre – again, see the noticeboard for further details.

    Parish Meeting for the Pastoral Council and Finance Committee, in the parish hall on Monday 1st July at 7.00pm. Apologies to Father Simon please, if you can’t attend.

    Catholic Women, different perspectives will be held at Saint Joseph’s, Leicester, on Saturday 6th July, from 10.00am until 4.30pm. This day has been arranged following the success of our first day at the beginning of this year. It is open to Catholic woman of any age who would like to come, whether or not they regularly attend Mass. There are to be talks and interviews with invited guests followed by questions to the panel during the morning and, following lunch (soup and rolls available at small charge), the afternoon comprises group discussions and a short music meditation. There is no charge for the event, but interested women are asked to confirm that they coming by a message on 0116 2207881.

    The Parish Film Night will be showing Hotel for Dogs, on Saturday 6th July in the parish hall at 7.15pm. All ar

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