Newsletter

SEPTEMBER IS THE MONTH OF THE SORROWFUL MOTHER ‘THE SEVEN DOLOURS OF MARY’


THE TWENTY-FIFTH WEEK OF ORDINARY TIME


Dear parishioners,


MASS OF OUR LADY OF WALSINGHAM. FRIDAY 24TH SEPTEMBER.


This Friday is the memorial of Our Lady of Walsingham, which is the dedication of the national shrine to our Blessed Mother in the county of Norfolk. At Sunday masses this week and in October, the month of the Holy Rosary, we will sing a lovely hymn called ‘Mary of Walsingham’. In a few words and a simple melody are expressed the history of one of Europe’s and the world’s greatest shrines to the Blessed Virgin Mary. Here are the words, with some notes to explain them - perhaps for some of you who are new to this country and English Catholicism.


1. Mary of Walsingham, Mother of Jesus;

Pray for your dowry [1] the land that we love,

England has need of your powerful protection,

Pour on us children your gifts from above.


2. You came to summon your servant Richeldis [2]

Bidding her build to your honour a shrine;

Help us to follow your blessed footsteps,

Leading the way with your standard divine.


3. Countless the pilgrims whose footsteps have echoed,

Down through the years along Walsingham’s Way,

Countless the prayers that your children have offered,

Mary of Walsingham hear us, we pray.


4. Many long years saw your image neglected; [3]

Only a few sought the help of your prayer,

Walsingham Shrine’s now restored to its beauty, [4]

Welcoming pilgrims who plead for your care.


5. So shall we praise you with ceaseless thanksgiving;

So shall we sing of your love and your power,

So shall we feel your protection and comfort;

All through our lives and at death’s solemn hour.


[1] England is the ‘dowry of Mary’. This title goes back to medieval times and by the middle of the fourteenth century was a special dedication of England universally known. It reflects the deep devotion to Mary that existed in this country, and the belief that Our Blessed Lady took a particular protective interest in the country's affairs. As a young man, Henry VIII had a deep catholic faith himself and paid homage to Our Lady of Walsingham, England’s national shrine, the heart of ‘her dowry’.


During the Catholic Revival in England centuries later, in 1893, Pope Leo XIII used the title ‘dowry of Mary’ when talking to a group of Catholic pilgrims from England in Rome. He spoke of "the wonderful filial love which burnt within the heart of your forefathers towards the great Mother of God ... to whose service they consecrated themselves with such abundant proofs of devotion, that the kingdom itself acquired the singular and highly honourable title of 'Mary's Dowry.'"


England was formally dedicated as the dowry of Mary in the reign of King Richard III in 1381. In 2020 England was re- dedicated as Our Lady’s Dowry. Cardinal Archbishop Vincent Nicholls tells us ‘We are Mary’s Dowry! Please enrich that Dowry by offering to her the best that you can give. She will stretch her protective mantle over land and over all who live here’


( see https://www.walsingham.org.uk/rededication/ )


[2] Richeldis was the Norfolk Lady to whom in 1061 The Blessed Virgin Mary granted a vision of the Holy Family’s House in Nazareth and gave the instruction to build a replica in her village of Walsingham. ‘Countless pilgrims’ would visit the Holy House of Walsingham which became one of Europe’s greatest shrines to the Mother of God.


[3] In the 1530s, the tyrant king, Henry VIII, once a devout catholic and to whom the Pope had given the title ‘Defender of the Faith’, in his greed and lust made himself ‘head of the church’ and took the shrines abbeys and churches of England for his own ends. From this time until the nineteenth century, English Catholics had to go abroad or practise the faith in secret. The penalty for catholic observance was death. The great priory and holy house, and the image of Our Lady of Walsingham were destroyed and for most English people, were relegated to history. The ruins of the priory still stand in lovely gardens and can be visited.


[4] Outside the village of Walsingham is ‘the Slipper Chapel’. This was where pilgrims long ago would remove their shoes for the final mile of the walk to the Shrine. After Henry VIII’s act of desecration, this Slipper Chapel became a farm building, but in 1897 it was bought by a catholic lady and 'restored to its beauty', becoming the heart of a new shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham which was formally re-established by Pope Leo XIII. Now again, Catholics from all over the world, living in this country, make the pilgrimage to Walsingham to plead for the care of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Walsingham.


I hope in 2022 we might make a Parish Pilgrimage to Walsingham by coach and spend a couple of nights at the Pilgrim House in the village. Some of you have already expressed an interest. Please let me know if you would like to come too. Dates to follow and coach or mini -bus will be booked.


Church & Hall Redecoration

Some more will be done this week, but soon the money runs out. In order to complete the repair of the Wall Areas to the rear of the church (the entrance wall) we need nearly another £2,000, including the necessary hire of two men and a tower scaffold. If you can help with this, please make your donation online with reference to Church Redecoration or in an envelope marked the same.

NATWEST

ACC NO. 21361606

SORT CODE 517014

for the credit of: RCAS ST THOMAS MORE - BOSTALL PARK

Ref: church redecoration

Next week on Wednesday and Thursday there will be a further finishing touch to the Hall, with new flooring being installed on the stage, making us ready for a very booked and busy autumn ahead.


Macmillan Coffee Morning 10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. SUNDAY 3rd OCTOBER 2021. IN THE HALL. With Coffee, Tea, Cakes, sandwiches, hot snacks, bingo and live music. Come along and support the great work of Macmillan nurses for people with cancer.


Deaths For all our brothers and sisters who ate the Body of Christ, the bread of Life, that they may be raised up on the Last Day. (Drawn from the intercession of the Funeral Mass)

Please pray for the souls of:


Helen Gaskin. who died on Tuesday 24th August aged 69. Funeral Requiem at 10.30 a.m. with committal at Hillview Cemetery.


Johannes Franciscus Gerritsen who died on 26th August 2021 aged 94. Funeral at Eltham Crematorium on Monday 20th September 2021 at 2.30 p.m.


Sandra Nourse who died on 3rd September 2021. Funeral Requiem on Wednesday 22nd September at 2.00 p.m. with committal at Eltham Crematorium.


May the divine assistance remain with them always, and may their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace.


MASSES AND INTENTIONS FOR THE COMING WEEK: THE TWENTY-FIFTH WEEK OF ORDINARY TIME

Psalter week 1 Ferial cycle 1 at mass.

Please come to mass once a week only, on any day of your choosing, to help with numbers and social distancing.

Mass intentions booked for masses cancelled or replaced with a funeral will be moved to another day.

Please note the Sunday 10.30 mass has been moved to 11.00 due to the lack of time after the 9.00 to prepare for the next mass and consequently the consistent late start of the 10.30. We will try this new time for a few weeks and see how it works.


Saturday 18th September THE TWENTY-FIFTH SUNDAY OF ORDINARY TIME (B)

6.00 p.m. Confessions

+ 6.30 p.m. MASS [said] Jerome Braganza R.I.P.

Sunday 19th September

8. 30 a.m. The Daily Rosary

+ 9.00 a.m. SUNG MASS. K.G. George R.I.P.

+ 11.00 a.m. SOLEMN LATIN MASS [with English Readings] The people of the parish.

6.00 p.m. No Social Evening in the Hall this Sunday


Monday 20th September St. Andrew Kim Tae-gon, priest and Paul Chong Ha- sang and companions, martyrs, memorial.

9.30 a.m. The Daily Rosary

+ 10.00 a.m. Requiem for Johannes Gerritsen. His funeral and committal is at 2.30 p.m. at Eltham Crematorium.


Tuesday 21st September St. Matthew, Apostle and Evangelist, feast.

The Daily Rosary at home.

NO PUBLIC MASS TODAY


Wednesday 22nd September feria.

The Daily Rosary at home.

2.00 p.m. Funeral Requiem for Sandra Nourse followed by committal at 3.30 at Eltham Crematorium.


Thursday 23rd September Ss Pius of Pietrelcina, memorial.

9.30 a.m. The Daily Rosary

+ 10.00 Tom Furlong R.I.P.

2.00 p.m. Thursday Lunch Club Afternoon Tea.


Friday 24th September Our Lady of Walsingham, memorial.

9.30 a.m. The Daily Rosary

+ 10.00 a.m. Ann Peryer W.B.

6.00 p.m. choir practice


Saturday 25th September Our Lady’s Saturday

9.30 a.m. The Daily Rosary

+ 10.00 a.m. [Latin] Mickey Geraghty R.I.P.

[ + 6.30 p.m. THE TWENTY-SIXTH SUNDAY OF ORDINARY TIME. Saluzinho & Luiza Fernandes R.I.P.]


SEPTEMBER PRAYER TO OUR LADY, THE SORROWFUL MOTHER: Our Lady is there listening to the words of her Son, united to him in his suffering, when he cried out ‘my God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’. What could she do? She united herself fully with the redemptive love of her Son and offered to the Father her immense sorrow, which pierced her pure heart like a sharp-edged sword. In this month of the Feast of Holy Cross on Tuesday 14th and the memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows the next day, let us offer to our Sorrowful Mother the mortification of keeping quiet about our pains and discomforts unless necessary, and bearing the small inevitable daily inconveniences and disappointments of life with patience, uniting these with the torments of Mary as she stood by her crucified Son.

Let that offering to God, in union with our Sorrowful Mother, be our September prayer. (Adapted from ‘A Handbook of Prayers’ p 493, Midwest Theological Forum)


Mary of Walsingham, hear us we pray!


God bless,

Fr. Jonathon