News for Sunday 14th February 2021

News from St Mary the Virgin, Kenton on Saturday 13th & Sunday 14th February 2021: The Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

I think it's somewhat extravagant of so many “couples” in the Western World to spend so much time, money and effort on the celebration of a 3rd century Bishop! Of course, Saint Valentine no longer gets a mention in the Liturgical Calendar – but it is amazing that in this ever-increasing secular society, that so much energy (and money) can be put into relationships on this one day in the year that bears the name of a Christian martyr. Surely, in any loving relationship, there is no need to go to such lengths on one arbitary day, when there are another 364 days on which one can wine, dine, give cards, flowers and chocolates and demonstrate ones undeniable love – and you can probably do it far cheaper if you avoid 14th February on which to do it!

This Sunday is the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (and the last Sunday before Lent). We are delighted that our Archdeacon, The Venerable Catherine Pickford, will be preaching at the 10.30am Parish Mass. If you are unable to attend, do please remember to “tune in” on Facebook or YouTube. The usual 6.00pm Vigil Mass will be celebrated on Saturday 13th February and you can “tune in” to that too! With the high risk of Covid and the bitterly cold weather, it is not surprising that numbers at both Masses have been considerably reduced in recent weeks. We would love to see you – but not if that presents too much of a risk to your health. We would much rather you stayed safe and healthy, and joined us back in church when circumstances allow.

This coming week, you will (I am sure) be enjoying pancakes on Shrove Tuesday in advance of our Lenten observance, which starts with Ash Wednesday. There are two Masses, at 9.30am and 6.00pm. It is a day of fasting and abstinence; a time to take stock of where we are in our relationship with God. Fortunately, it's not boxes of chocolates or bouquets of flowers that endear us to our Heavenly Father, for his Love is unconditional. Lent is the perfect opportunity to reflect upon how we receive and reciprocate God's love for us.

Grant, O Lord, that we may begin with holy fasting this campaign of Christian service, so that, as we take up battle against spiritual evils, we may be armed with the weapons of self restraint. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen

David Griffiths