RESUMPTION OF COMMUNAL WORSHIP IN SCOTLAND
‘Assuming no deterioration in the situation with Coronavirus between now and then, communal worship will resume in Scotland on Friday 26th March with a cap of 50 people in the congregation, providing the building can safely accommodate that number with two-metre physical distancing between households.’
Bishop’s Conference of Scotland
Our parish, St Ninian’s, will resume public worship. Celebration of Mass and Holy Week Services from Saturday 27th March – Vigil Mass at 7.00pm. We will use Friday 26th and Saturday morning 27th for a deep cleansing and sanitising of our Church in preparation for re-opening.
As of weekend Saturday 27th & Sunday 28th March, the times of our parish Masses will continue to be:-
Saturday Vigil – 7.00pm
Sunday – 8.00am, 9.00am, 10.00am, 11.00am, 12.00 noon, 3.00pm and 5.00pm
BOOKING IN ADVANCE IS ESSENTIAL.
ATTENDANCE AT EACH MASS IS LIMITED TO 50 PEOPLE.
TO RESERVE YOUR ATTENDANCE PLEASE PHONE MOBILE NUMBER – 07894999046
THIS WEDNESDAY (24th) FROM 6.30PM – 8.00PM OR THURSDAY (25th) AND FRIDAY (26th) 12.00 NOON – 4.00PM.
The times of Masses and Services during Holy Week and bookings will be given in next Sunday’s printed bulletin and on our parish website – stniniansrcc.com
We warmly welcome Fr John Clark (Comboni Missionaries) – Verona Father, who will join Fr Celestine, Deacon Tommy, and Fr Frank in our celebration of Holy Week and Easter Liturgies this year.
NATIONAL DAY OF REFLECTION – TUESDAY 23rd MARCH
Let us prayerfully remember all the victims of the COVID pandemic, their families and communities, and all those whose sacrifice is helping us all to cope in these troubled times. May we all experience healing for body, mind, and spirit as we journey together as one towards healthier and brighter times.
EIGHT YEARS: POPE FRANCIS
The fundamental challenge to living out faithfully the mission revealed to us by Jesus in the Gospels has been with us since the beginning of the Church. How are we to witness to the Gospel mandate ‘Go and do likewise?’ (LK 10:31).
In general terms, a particular challenge today for the Church is to become a ‘Church for the margins’. In the encyclical letter ‘Evangelii Gaudium’, it is Francis who invites us to ‘go forth from our own comfort zone in order to reach all the ‘peripheries’ in need of the light of the Gospel (EG, 20).’ On the margins are people who find themselves excluded and at the edges of society and the Church.
It is the challenge of our Church to nurture collaborative ministry and partnerships that witness to the Gospel message of inclusion and the care of creation. Since the start of his papacy, Pope Francis has invited us and our Church on a journey where we can ‘Go and do likewise’.
On 28th February 2013, Pope Benedict became the first Pope to relinquish his office since 1415. This historic moment led to the election of Jorge Bergoglio, Jesuit Archbishop of Buenos Aires on 13th March 2013. In memory of St Francis of Assisi, he took the name Francis. Francis is the first Argentinian and first Jesuit Pope.
At his first Sunday Eucharist, Pope Francis articulated the foundations of his leadership – a leadership rooted in the deep convictions of God’s loving mercy and compassion. Francis’ homily to the people present at the Church of St Anna was on the woman taken in adultery (Jn 8: 1-11). It was short and to the point, emphasising God’s merciful compassion. Perhaps the most revealing sentence was this – ‘I think we too are the people who, on the one hand, at times, like to find a stick to beat others with, to condemn others. And Jesus has this message for us: mercy. I think – and I say it with humility – that this is the Lord’s most powerful message – mercy’.
Through eight years Pope Francis has continued to bring the message of God’s mercy to as many people as possible through his homilies, his social commentaries, his visitations, the publishing of encyclicals, the inclusion of people from other faiths, the call for peace, the call for care of the vulnerable, particularly migrants and refugees, the abolition of the death penalty, the protection of the unborn, the call to care for our common home and the approval of civil partnerships.
Francis’ papacy has been pastorally rooted in humanity where mercy and compassion are the flagships. However, Francis’ papacy has done more than just call for social or ecclesiastical change. Pope Francis has offered an encouraging hand to the individual member of the Church.
Pope Francis recognised the plight of the individual whose faith identity was being challenged in a world where centralised authority has been devastated by various scandals. This loss of authority has been replaced by a world of social media, self-promotion, fake news and spin. In this culture, values are replaced by preferences. This effect has divided the human family into fragmented groupings. As Pope Francis put it, we are no longer experiencing an era of change, but a change of era. Amid this constant cultural change, Pope Francis reiterated the Gospel mandate, ‘As the Father has sent me, I am sending you’. (Jn 20:21).
Francis’ response to this culture of change was to mandate a renewal of missionary activity, where faith dialogues with culture. At the centre of this relationship are the Gospel and the call to be faithful to Jesus’ message of inclusion. Through this powerful dialogue, Francis no longer allowed secular influences to restrict religion to a private domain. He articulates a faith perspective on societal and spiritual concerns and relocates religion as a central component of society.
In his writings, Pope Francis advances an opportunity for people of faith to share their experiences with people of other religions – he simply has made faith relevant again to a lot of people who could not comprehend the role of religion in today’s society.
Francis’ papacy has led the People of God on a pilgrimage, distinguished by compassion and mercy. As we journey together as a community, we know there are people who remain marginalised in our Church. Many people have issues they are concerned about in our Church, including the role of the laity, particularly women, in our Church leadership, the failure to address the ordination of women and the place of women in the Church and the marginalisation of the LGBTQ community. Pope Francis, we trust, will continue to lead on these issues and others today and will bring a compassionate response to all.
Pope Francis in Gaudete Et Exsultate reminds us of Jesus’ invitation to be saints and not to settle for a bland and mediocre existence. To guide us on this mission, he re-establishes the Beatitudes as a pathway to live our Christian faith, calling them the Christian identity card.
At the core of Pope Francis’ papacy has been the sharing of faith. Like us all, Francis is trying to live the Gospel faithfully. In sharing this journey with those in his care, he continues to encourage us and invites us to ‘Go and do likewise’ on this pilgrimage of life. (Ronan Barry).
Many thanks to all our parishioners for your generosity towards our parish and clergy, it is most appreciated.
PLEASE PRAY FOR THOSE WHO DIED RECENTLY
– May She Rest in Peace –
PLEASE PRAY FOR WHOSE ANNIVERSARIES OCCUR ABOUT NOW
DUNBLANE COMMUNITY (25 years)
CLYDEBANK BLITZ (80 years)
ANNE BYRNE DOCHERTY
JOHN (JACK) FERGUSON
GERARD BAILEY (Birthday)
JEAN SPEIRS (Birthday)