St. Mary-the-Virgin, News for Sunday 3rd November 2019.
Today, Friday 1st November, we have been celebrating the Feast of All Saints; giving thanks for the host of holy men and women who have followed in Christ’s footsteps and found salvation in Him. If you have been able to attend any of the Masses offered for All Saints (or tuned in through the web-cams) you will have heard Fr Edward and Fr Matthew describe some of those men and women in rather harsh words. Not the sort of descriptions that we would think about when we think of Saintly people. Yet, if I were to remind you of just a few … Matthew who became one of the Apostles was a Tax Collector, Paul (or Saul, as he was before his conversion to Christianity) persecuted and killed many hundreds of Christians and Augustine rejected his Christian upbringing to follow a life of hedonism and partying. If these have been able to turn around their lives and seek salvation in Christ, then there is hope for each one of us.
Tomorrow is the Commemoration of All The Faithful Departed (All Souls) with Sung Mass at 10.30am. Apologies to those who are keen followers of the English Rugby Team, but as in life, sometimes sacrifices have to be made in following in the footsteps of Our Lord and Saviour; and we owe it to our departed loved ones to pray for them tomorrow especially. We will also be praying for our dear friend Susan Tye Smith whose Requiem Mass takes place at 11.00am on Thursday. her body will be received into church at 5.00pm on Wednesday evening, followed by Vespers of the Dead.
This Sunday is the Thirty-first in Ordinary Time and in the Good News from Luke, we hear of another man who, like St Matthew, was a Tax Collector and certainly unpopular. Zacchaeus’ “claim to fame” is in climbing a tree to try and see Jesus, and when Jesus sees him invites himself to his house. Zacchaeus immediately makes a commitment to amend his ways, and Jesus reassures him: “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man too is a son of Abraham; for the Son of Man has come to seek out and save what was lost.”
Coming up at the end of this month is the ACAT Service of Prayer and Meditation at St Alban’s Church North Harrow. Details on the poster click here