News for Sunday 27th March: The Fourth Sunday of Lent

News from St Mary the Virgin, Kenton on Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th March 2022: The Fourth Sunday of Lent

Have you been out enjoying this lovely Spring weather we have been blessed with over the past few days? Despite all the news of rising inflation; increasing Covid rates and the on-going invasion of The Ukraine: somehow, the arrival of a few warm and sunny days just take the edge off our immense sorrows. Those who have been grieving over the past two years of the pandemic and those who are recently bereaved; those who are receiving hospital treatment for acute or on-going conditions; those who have lost their homes through poverty or as a result of the illegal and immoral invasion of their country: this is not in any way supposed to suggest that there is any less hurt; but somehow the sunshine delivers remarkable healing. In our natural world, the warmth of the sun encourages new life. Plants begin to flower, and animals emerge from the drowsiness of winter. It has that effect on us too. Do remember that this Saturday evening (early hours of Sunday morning) our clocks will also “spring forward” an hour as we move from Grenwich Mean Time to British Summer Time. If you forget to change your alarm clock, you might just be waking up as the Parish Mass is well underway!

This Sunday is Laetare Sunday, from the first word of the Entrance Antiphon “Rejoice” (which translates from the Latin word “Laetare”). We rejoice because the end of Lent is in sight. Just a few more weeks and we will be commencing Holy Week. The Good News in the Gospel according to Luke relates the parable of The Prodigal Son. How blessed are we, that our Father in Heaven will always welcome us back with open arms, just as the prodigal son's father killed the fatted calf and held a celebration for his return. Much like our Mothers will do (or will have done) when we greet them on this Mothering Sunday. Just as Mary will have done as she loved and cherished Jesus as he grew to adulthood: and how we completely understand the tears that she will have shed as her beloved son was put to death and died on the cross of Calvary, as she stood with the beloved disciple by her side. We understand the highs and lows as we experience the sunshine and the laughter against the depths of sorrow and despair. We cannot change the events of the past, but we can look with hope to the future.

The first Mass of Sunday is on Saturday 26th March at 6.00pm. Parish Mass is on Sunday 27th March at 10.30am. Let us give thanks and rejoice for the love shown to us by our mothers, and for the generosity and grace bestowed upon us by our heavenly Father.

“Rejoice in the Lord, always; and again I say rejoice.”

David Griffiths