News from St Mary the Virgin, Kenton on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd May 2021: The Fifth Sunday of Easter
Can you believe that this weekend we embark upon the month of May – a month in which we pay special devotion to The Blessed Virgin Mary? As a church dedicated to Our Lady, we take great pleasure in honouring the mother of Our Risen Lord, particularly in this Easter Season, as a reminder of her importance in the birth and life of the Church. Mary is also the first and foremost of Jesus' disciples. Her entire life was devoted to him. It was Mary who told the stewards at the wedding feast to “Do whatever he tells you”, and witnessed the miracle of water turning to wine. Pope Paul VI identified May as the month in which to honour Mary and Pope Pius XII proclaimed the 'Queenship of Mary'. The Spring Bank Holiday at the end of May would also usually see a great gathering at The Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham for the National Pilgrimage, sadly restricted this year due to the ongoing Covid regulations; but will be available to watch on a livestream (details will be available on the Walsingham web-site www.walsinghamanglican.org.uk ).
In the Good News from John's Gospel on Sunday, we hear Jesus tell us: “I am the vine, you are the branches. Whoever remains in me, with me in him, bears fruit in plenty; for cut off from me you can do nothing”. He also describes his Father as the “vinedresser” – the one who prunes and cultivates the vine. And whilst we can see that God the Father, the “vinedresser” has planted Jesus, the “true vine” to bring forth the branches (ourselves) who are to bear the fruits of his (and our) labours; in the background is Our Lady, gently nurturing and supporting and tending to our needs, just as she did as Jesus grew under her loving care.
The first Mass for the Fifth Sunday of Easter will be at 6.00pm on Saturday 1st May, with the Parish Mass on Sunday 2nd May at 10.30am. How appropriate that instead of the Angelus at the end of Mass during this Easter Season, we sing the Regina Coeli (“Queen of Heaven”):
Joy to thee O Queen of Heaven, Alleluia!
He whom thou wast meet to bear, Alleluia!
As He promised hath arisen, Alleluia!
Pour for us to Him thy prayer, Alleluia!
V/ Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary Alleluia!
R/ For The Lord is Risen indeed, Alleuia!