This weekend we celebrate the Sixth Sunday of Easter conscious that we are fast approaching the climax of the Easter season. This Thursday is Ascension Thursday, the fortieth day of Eastertide. Of course this would normally be a holy day, but just like Sundays and other feasts right now, the obligation is removed. Please join us online if you can or pray with us in your home. Our Mass on Thursday will be at 10am on the live-stream.

Next Sunday will be the Seventh Sunday of Easter, and in two weeks we will celebrate the great feast of Pentecost.

Many thanks to everyone who joined in our celebration of ‘School Mass’ on Wednesday. It was great to have you all praying with us. Thank you to Mrs Hood and Mrs Hutton for helping us arrange the celebration. God bless you all – keep safe and, of course, we’re looking forward to seeing you all soon.

Dear young parishioners! We haven’t forgotten about you, and we hope you remember us in your prayers each day. Many young people in our parish were making excellent preparations before the lockdown to celebrate the sacraments. Last weekend should have been our First Holy Communion Masses, and this coming Friday we would have celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation with our young people in Year 9. Please can everyone in the parish remember them in your prayers. We look forward to seeing you all again in the not-too-distant future, and making preparations with you to celebrate these wonderful sacraments. We also miss all our young peoples’ groups we normally see so often: school children, altar servers, musicians and singers, our Scouts, Beavers, Cubs, Brownies, Irish Dancers, everyone who comes to Mass, and many more! God bless you all – keep your prayers going strong!

There is a pastoral letter from Pope Francis to all the faithful concerning the month of May. Please follow the link to read the full text of the Holy Father's letter and the two prayers he has composed for this special time. May is the month of Mary. If possible, let us pray the rosary in our homes for all those affected by the current crisis. We can all be apostles of prayer - even from our armchairs and living rooms! God bless you all.

Please remember that this Friday, 8th May, is the 75th anniversary of Victory in Europe and the end of the European war.

We will mark this special occasion in prayer during the 10am Mass on Friday.

In addition to this, there will be a national two-minute silence at 11am.  At 3pm there will be the Nation’s Toast to the Heroes of World War Two, and at 9pm there will be a special broadcast by the Her Majesty the Queen.

Please join in prayer as we recall the sacrifices made by so many, and celebrate the peace and freedom those sacrifices achieved.

Today on the Third Sunday of Easter we hear the beautiful Gospel story about the mysterious appearance of the Risen Jesus on the way to Emmaus, and about how the disciples not only recognised him at the breaking of bread but also about how their faith in the resurrection was confirmed. They asked each other, 'Did not our hearts burn within us?'. May we too, like them, be moved by the power of God's word and come to even greater faith in the Risen Lord. Next week, the Fourth Sunday of Easter, is known as Good Shepherd Sunday and is the World Day of Prayer for Vocations to the Priesthood and Consecrated Life.


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