We remember those who have died recently including, Tom Cervasio, Don Savy and those whose anniversaries occur about this time including John Camilleri, Brian Atkins, Mick Lockwood, Barry McMahon, Aileen Syder & Brian McNulty Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord, let your perpetual light shine upon them. May they rest in peace. AMEN.
We pray for those who are sick including Keith Brooks, David Gudgeon, Calvin Furnell, Richard Pereira, Val Battams, Marie Stephen, George Hilder, Lyn Hardidge and Philomena Austin. We pray for all who care for the sick and worry about them. May their works of service be richly blessed. (Names can only be placed on this list by the sick person or a family member).
BAPTISMS: Receive the light of Christ. Parents and Godparents this light is entrusted to you to keep burning brightly” (Rite of Baptism). Next Baptism Preparation is on April 8th at 2.45pm
THE PRESENCE OF GOD: A reflection from Fr Andrew Hamilton SJ
The stories of Easter are like the stories of Jesus’ birth with both focusing on a small place: a manger and a tomb. They are also full of extraordinary events: the guiding star, the stone mysteriously rolled away from the tomb, and Jesus’ habit of passing through locked doors. They, too, are richly peopled by angels busily delivering messages to the chief players.
The heart of both stories, however, is wrapped in mystery. We are told that the Holy Spirit overshadows Mary in Jesus’ conception, but do not know how. We are told that Jesus rises from the dead, but we are not told how. All we have is a birth in a field and an empty tomb together with mysterious appearances. In both stories, of course, there are angels, but their role is to shroud the events in mystery.
In fact, different observers will see in Christmas and Easter evidence for the absence, as well as the presence, of God. It takes faith to see God as present in Jesus. For Mary, whom the angel had promised the birth of the Messiah as the climax of God’s plan for us, the process leading to the birth was of one forced absence after another – absence from family and home when travelling heavily pregnant to Bethlehem, absence of the relative comfort of a roof over her head in an inn, of a birthing place worthy of God in a feeding place trodden by animals, and absence of the company of angels among disreputable shepherds. It would take faith to see in all this God’s presence and not God’s absence.
Similarly, at Easter the disciples have to grapple with an absence: a tomb that is empty, and a Jesus who comes and goes, who is seen by some and not by others. It takes faith to see this as a sign of God’s presence rather than a sign that someone has taken away the body or that people were seeing things that were not real. Above all, too, the disciples had to grapple with the absence of hope that they had experienced in Jesus’ death. They had hoped that he would set Israel free, but had seen him taken, tortured, dead and buried. It was natural that they, as with Thomas, should see only absence when told of visions of his presence.
Yet they found Christ present when he appeared to them, when they heard the stories, and when they saw the effect that Jesus’ rising had on those drawn into it. They recognised that God’s presence and love were found even in the hardest events and the places that seemed derelict – in fields and tombs, the places of no hope. Angels could appear in the most desperate of places. And so it is in our lives.
We all need to deal with the apparent absence of God in the events of our own lives or of those of others, near and far. We need the strength to keep hoping in the face of the despair, cruelty and hardship. We need Easter.
“WELCOME BACK FATHER BERNARD”
EASTER CEREMONIES TIMETABLE:
|Holy Thursday||29th||7:30 pm||Mass|
|Good Friday||30th||10:30 am
|Stations of the Cross
Passion Of Christ
TENEBRAE: Tenebrae, sometimes called the Service of Shadows, is a peaceful, reflective, church service that focusses on the ‘shadows’ falling over the Lord’s life as Calvary loomed. All parishioners are invited to join in, as though to accompany the Lord Jesus in those difficult, dark events and places: Sunday evening (25/3), 7.00pm at the church.
CHRISM MASS (MASS OF THE OILS): The Chrism Mass (Mass of the Oils) will be celebrated by Bishop Patrick O’Regan and the priests of the Diocese at St Mary’s Cathedral, Sale, on Tuesday this week at 11.00 am.
At this Mass the sacred Oils (catechumens, sick and chrism) are blessed by the Bishop. The clergy of the diocese also recommit themselves to the ministerial service of God’s people. All parishioners are warmly welcomed to the Chrism Mass.
THE MASS OF THE LORD’S SUPPER: The Mass of the Lord’s Supper is celebrated on the evening of Holy Thursday. It inaugurates the Easter Triduum (3 days), and commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus with his disciples, more explicitly than other celebrations of the Mass.
The Mass stresses three aspects of that saving event: “the institution of the Eucharist, the institution of the ministerial priesthood, and the commandment of love that Jesus gave by washing the feet of his disciples.” After the Mass, continuation of Eucharistic adoration is encouraged, as though to “keep watch” with the Lord as he endures the ‘agony in the garden’. All parishioners are encouraged to join in this solemn celebration and renew their commitment to the service of God’s people through the various ministries of the parish.
GOOD FRIDAY STATIONS OF THE CROSS: There will be an outdoor communal/family way of the cross conducted on Good Friday (30th March) at 10.30am. If you wish to be part please contact Tresa 0421931888 or use the signup sheet in the foyer
THE CELEBRATION OF THE LORD’S PASSION: This service is celebrated traditionally at 3:00pm and is a continuation of the Holy Thursday liturgy and hence begins in silence as the liturgy, the night before ended in silence.
Traditionally the altar is completely bare until covered with a cloth for the distribution of Communion. This service normally consists of four parts: The liturgy of the Word, with a focus on the Passion; the solemn intercessions; the veneration of the cross of Jesus and the distribution of Communion. A collection on Good Friday is taken up for the keeping of the holy places in the Lord’s own land.
SUPPER AFTER EASTER VIGIL: Parishioners are welcome to come join for Tea in the parish hall after the Easter Vigil. Please bring a plate to share.
COMBINED CHURCHES OF PAKENHAM EASTER DAWN SERVICE: When: 6:15am Sunday April 1st Where: Cardinia Lakes Amphitheatre (off Windermere Boulevard) you are invited to praise God, together with other Christians, for the glorious resurrection of Jesus in a combined Easter dawn service! The service is timed so you can still attend your own church’s Easter Sunday service. For more information, or if you want to offer to help with the service, contact Pastor Richard Schoenmaker on email@example.com
CHOIR PRACTICE – Easter: New members are still welcome at Choir Practice for Easter meet at the church on Wednesday 28th at 7.30 pm
ALTAR SERVERS: Calling all Altar Servers. We would be grateful for your assistance through all the Easter services.
FIRST HOLY COMMUNION: First Communion will be celebrated in our parish on the 26th/27th of May and the 2nd/3rd of June. For those children, and their families, attending schools other than our parish schools, who would like to receive their first communion this year, please contact Mrs Siji Dominic @ 59417315 – or firstname.lastname@example.org – soon to register. Preparatory sessions begin on 18th April for all the children and their families. It is expected that each child and a family member will attend each activity.
PLANNING FOR THE 2020 PLENARY COUNCIL OF THE CHURCH IN AUSTRALIA: As the planning for the 2020 Plenary Council of the Church in Australia gets underway, Bishop Pat O’Regan would like to host a meeting with parishioners in each of our 27 parishes over the first half of 2018. It is envisaged that these meetings will be a way of introducing parishioners to the concept of Plenary 2020; initiating dialogue; explaining the Plenary process and most importantly, listening to the people.
To that end Bishop Pat has put together a schedule of meetings to visit our 27 parishes and will be at St Patrick’s on the 24TH of April. Please mark your diary early!