SOLEMN PONTIFICAL MASS
WITH THE SACRAMENTS OF HOLY BAPTISM AND CONFIRMATION
TONIGHT AT 7.30 P.M.
at ST. AUGUSTINE’S RUSH GREEN
THE BISHOP OF RICHBOROUGH
followed by a Reception in the Parish Hall
We arrived quite early and so the grandchildren had the new adventure play area to themselves for a little while. Afterwards we went to the Discovery Exhibition where they drew pictures and discovered that the most destructive animals on the planet are humans. There’s a cage and Ann is pictured in it below. We had the chance to see some huge beetles close up being handled by one of the keepers.
After some exploring and lunch we went to see the lions and tigers and journeyed on the train. We went to watch the giraffes being fed and both grandchildren helped feed the elephants. By the afternoon the Zoo was crowded so we were rather pleased we had been there early.Colchester Zoo is celebrating its 50th anniversary. Ann and I are members so we visit periodically and every time we go we either discover something new or find improvements have been made.
Before leaving the grandchildren went to spend granny and granddad's money on some souvenirs. We had a little rain but nothing too terrible and it didn’t spoil the day.
At the Hospital Chapel today we celebrated Corpus Christi with a Solemn Mass and Benediction. (This year we didn’t have a procession) We welcomed Jean Brown a speaker from “Send-a-Cow” who told us about the wonderful work they do. We presented her with a cheque for £150.
Very early yesterday morning 7 of us set out from St. Augustine’s to go to the National Pilgrimage; we were joined at Walsingham by another 2 members who had set off a couple of days before. We had a brief break at the “hut in the woods” for our bacon and sausage butties.
It was a wonderful day with the sun shining down on us. Father Martin and I joined in the procession from the Shrine Church to the Abbey grounds for the Solemn Concelebrated Mass. The Bishop of Chichester was the principal celebrant. This year the seminarians from St. Stephen’s Theological College marshalled the parade and the Abbey Grounds. After Mass and lunch, we had an excellent sermon by the Archbishop of York and then we processed round the village saying the Rosary led by one of the Sisters, from the Walsingham Community. We sang the Walsingham Hymn between the Rosary Mysteries. Benediction took place at the site of the original Shrine Church which is in the Abbey Grounds immediatley following the Rosary.
It was good to see two of the Sisters who have joined the Ordinariate there to support us. After Benediction we left Walsingham for the short drive to Old Mother Hubbards at Swaffham for a fish and chip supper.
I’ve been going to the National Pilgrimage now for quite a few years and have always enjoyed doing so. This year counts in my estimation as one of the best.
I was totally disgusted when I read in this week’s Ilford Recorder that in co-ordinated action the police in the Borough of Ilford had: “swooped on the homeless, grabbing sleeping bags and food parcels donated by the public”. These homeless people lost what little they had by this cruel and unnecessary act by the police. Read the full report here.
The items, sleeping bags and food, were bundled into a police car and the homeless were not allowed to keep food that had been donated by the public and distributed through the Salvation Army unless they could grab some of it before it was taken away.
I have several questions that need urgent answering:
1. By what authority are items donated by the public for these people taken by the police. Do we really want to see the homeless in Ilford starve?
2. Why was such action needed and who authorised it.
Dear marriage supporter,
Last night, the same-sex marriage Bill was formally passed by the House of Commons at Third Reading, pushed through by the three main party leaders even though they had no mandate to do so.
However, a number of MPs came over to our side of the argument and voted against the Bill for the first time. It wasn't enough to stop the Bill at this stage, but we are gaining momentum.
The Bill now moves to the House of Lords where the Government faces a much tougher battle than in the Commons.
On 3 June the Lords will have an opportunity to vote down the whole Bill, but even if that doesn't succeed, there will be other opportunities to derail it later in the Lords.
The Bill now carries a commitment to review civil partnerships, potentially allowing heterosexual couples to choose a civil partnership rather than a marriage - a move which would cost the country at least £4bn.
So the Bill not only seeks to redefine marriage, it's now trying to wreck marriage by introducing an astronomically expensive two-tier system with the option of 'marriage-lite'.
We always said this Bill would unravel and cause marriage to be undermined. It's now beyond doubt. This Bill wrecks marriage.
The House of Lords, already alarmed by the undemocratic and shoddy way this Bill has been hustled through Parliament, will be even more angered at the way marriage is being tossed aside.
For all these reasons, there is a long way to go and there's still everything to play for. We will be fighting for marriage every step of the way.
Coalition for Marriage
I whole heartedly agree with the views from the Coalition. The only hope now is that this dreadful piece of legislation will now be defeated in the House of Lords. I listen to some of the Debate on the Parliamentary Channel and some very forceful arguments against the Bill were expressed. A marriage is a sacrament which is beyond the scope of MP’s to change; they can change the civil arrangements – they cannot change God’s law.
Some pundit remarked yesterday commentating on the debate on the Same Sex Marriage Bill that the Government had emulated a dictator in a Third World Country in the manner in which it had treated opponents to their ill-conceived bill. They ensured that the time allowed for debate was at an absolute minimum, someone close to the Prime Minister called opponents “swivel-eyed loons” and then they entered into an agreement with the Opposition for support to get this atrocious piece of legislation through its second stage without amendments.
And what was so terrible about the amendment to ensure that there will be equality under the law for heterosexual couples who want to enter a civil partnership rather than a marriage.
Several speakers in a self-congratulatory manner stated that the Church of England and the Church in Wales were exempt from the legislation. However, some one else pointed out that militant homosexuals would probably take this matter to the Court of Human Rights in an effort to compel clergy to officiate at same sex marriages despite the exemption. And as we are only too well aware, the UK have abrogated their rights to this court. Will clergy be sent to prison for failing to comply? Or just be fined? Registrars are to have no exemption, it appears.
Marriage is a sacrament, freely entered into, by a man and a woman and all the legislation by this government or any others around the world can not change this.
According to a news flash I have just found MP’s are in line for a pay rise of between £10/20,000 per annum. The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (Ipsa) has been looking at an increase of between £10,000 and £20,000 - although the lower figure is considered more likely.(pa press net) It is understood that in January a survey was conducted amongst MP’s who, on average, thought they should receive £86,000 although some thought £100,000 would be correct. Changes would probably not come into force until after the 2015 General Election.
It gives a whole new understanding of the phrase quoted by certain politicians that “we are all in this together”. Right,………… unless you happen to be an MP, of course. Whilst cuts are made to benefits, whilst local authorities are suffering massive cuts, whilst essential services are cut dramatically including A&E departments struggling with inadequate staff, those at Westminster think they can justify having their noses in the trough again. One might be excused for thinking that for most people £66,000 a year plus expenses would be reasonable – not it seems for our MP’s. Any wonder that the general public is completely disillusioned with them.
We hear rather a lot about scroungers; do MP’s consider themselves to fall into that category? ……………….perhaps they should!
Yesterday was the 70th anniversary of the Dam Busters raid utilising the bouncing bomb designed by Barnes Wallace and featured in the film “The Dam Busters.” We remembered, at Mass at the Ilford Hospital Chapel, those who had died in that very brave attack which, it has been reckoned substantially shortened the Second World War. Yesterday evening a special ceremony was broadcast featuring both the Lancaster bomber and the Spitfire both of which played a significant part in the attack: the bomber dropping the bouncing bombs and the spitfires photographing the damage done by them. There are now only two Lancasters flying: one in Canada and one in Lossiemouth.
Many years ago now, in my youth when I had a dance band we were booked to play for a dance for the 617 Squadron Association on Hayling Island. It was to begin at 7.30 p.m. and our booking was until midnight. Usually with bookings like this you know that you will not be needed until around 8.00 p.m. at the earliest so whilst we wouldn’t be late we would tend to arrive dead on time which we did. Only to find that everybody was already there and waiting. We quickly set up and began.Then started one of the best evenings I remember. There was a totally free bar and the organisers made certain that the band were kept well supplied. Bands usually retired to a private room for some sandwiches (often they have seen better days!) during a break whilst the paying guests have their buffet; not with these guys -we were invited to share the most lavish buffet with the guests. All the men wore dinner jackets and the ladies were dressed in elegant gowns. After a wonderful buffet they had their Grand Daw with the most fabulous prizes. We carried on playing until just after midnight when we saw some other musicians arrive; they had been booked to take over from us. This event was going on all night! We were then invited to stay and join in if we would like to. All these years later I look back on this as a very great privilege to have been involved in one of the social functions for such a gallant group of men. Sadly very few are left but their historic achievement will never be forgotten.
Apparently the Conservative Party are “listening” to the people and so there is to be a draft bill to authorise a straight in or out vote on the EEC after the next General Election. We are told that because we have a coalition Government it is not possible for the bill to be Government sponsored so the Draft Bill will have to be sponsored by a MP who is lucky in the lottery to introduce private members bills.
Well, if politicians are listening to the public as they say they are why are they continuing with the new bill to sanction same sex marriages? Many thousands have signed the petition on the Coalition for Marriage website but I don’t hear the politicians listening. Could it possibly be that they only hear what they want to hear?
The Church teaches that Marriage is a sacrament between one man and one woman and I don’t think it is up to politicians to attempt to alter this. Civil Partnerships were introduced to cater for those in long-term same sex relationships and I have no objection to them provided it is understood, clearly, that it is what it says it is, a Civil Partnership and not a marriage.
Today I was the Celebrant at St. Andrew’s, North Weald where there is still a continuing interregnum. In my sermon I focussed on how Jesus had told his disciples to go out to the world and make disciples. This was a responsibility which we all share. I related how I had visited the Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem. There a single light illuminates the whole memorial which is in darkness; it shines so bright because it is reflected by hundreds of mirrors representing those who had died. If we go out to the world reflecting Christ our small light can be of great significance.
After Mass I drove back to St. Augustine’s, Rush Green for their after-Mass refreshments.
Today we celebrated the Ascension of Our Lord Jesus Christ at the Ilford Hospital Chapel with a Solemn Mass. Tonight I am playing the organ for a Solemn Mass at St. Augustine’s after which we are having a “BRING-&-SHARE” Supper.
On Sunday I am officiating at St. Andrews, North Weald where we will be celebrating the Ascension
This morning we went to St. Mary's Church, Ilford for their Table Top Sale at which the Ilford Hospital Chapel had a couple of stalls. We had a very enjoyable time seeing so many people we know.
Then we went on to Valentines Mansion. The last time I visited this it was in a state of total decay but £2 million pounds of Lottery Money have seen restored it to its former glory. After the trip round the Mansion we spent a while wandering round the gardens and the park after some very welcome refreshments in the Gardener's Cottage Café.
Our MP’s can hardly be surprised at the rise of UKIP. although I’m not certain that the people who gave them their electoral success fully understand all of their policies. There is a growing discontent with our current politicians both locally and nationally.
To take one example; Havering Council undertake a public consultation about parking charges then totally ignore public opinion. On a local level they want to impose charges for parking at Hilldene a shopping centre near where I live. A substantial local petition has been signed opposing this. The excuse that the council give is that it will prevent commuters using the car park as the new charges will impose a maximum time limited of 3 hours. However I’ve parked at Hilldene at various times of the day for over 4 years and I have never been unable to park. So where are these so-called commuters. The answer is there are none except in the imaginations of some councillors who are using this as an excuse to raise money.. To be quite honest who is going to park three miles away from the nearest train station? Or even more to the point, who is going to pay 20p to buy their daily paper? I believe this could be quite disastrous for the shop keepers as people can go to a local supermarket, park for free and buy pretty well everything available at Hilldene
At Westminster, the government impose regime of austerity which means that people in 21st century Britain are either having to borrow money to afford their weekly shop or are having to rely on food banks. (see report from WHICH featured in some of the Sunday papers) Of course many of our MP’s are millionaires or multi-millionaires so how can they know what it is like to not know where the next meal is coming from.
We decide to export a man who preaches the vilest of view, back to his own country of Jordan and our courts and the EEC Court of Human Rights prevent this happening. No wonder that UKIP with it’s anti EEC stance are winning support.
Many people in the UK are opposed to same sex marriage but will the politicians listen. Of course not!. David Cameron is set on imposing this violation of the Sacrament of Marriage on our country.exempting the CofE from participating in this. I have no problem with Civil Partnership but I find the whole idea of same sex marriage totally repugnant as I understand Holy Matrimony to be one man married to one woman.UKIP are opposed to same sex marriage.
If members of our political elite want voters to support them then they had better start listening for once. Despite our antiquated electoral system it is within the bounds of possibility that come the next General Election UKIP could secure representation at Westminster.and hold the balance of power.
Today I concelebrated the Parish Mass at St. Augustine’s, preached and led the Intercessions – a brief resume of my sermon can be found here
Hail sweet month of May!
Hail bright month of May!
Bring sunshine with thee,
Chasing clouds away.
March has left us sighing
In cold and chilly blast,
April's tears have fallen,
May has come at last!
I will wander in the meadows,
I will search in sunny bowers,
I will cut sweet-scented posies,
I will twine a wreath of flowers.
The lily and the rosebud
With May I will entwine,
And lay them for an offering
Upon Our Lady's shrine.
And there is another offering
Which at Mary's feet I'll lay,
I know that she will prize it more
Than all the flowers of May,
I will pray to her to keep it
And never from it part,
And my Queen will deign to take it -
My poor, yet loving heart.
I will pray to her to guide it,
In truth and wisdom's way,
And make it pure and balmy
As the flowers which spring in May;
I will pray to her to warm it
With the sunshine of her love,
And make it fit to deck a crown
One day in heaven above.
The Catholic Record
Volume 9. May 1875