March 13th 2021
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
GOD IS PRESENT TO US EVEN IN THE MIDST OF ALL THIS CHAOS. THE GRACE OF HIS SACRAMENTS IS PRESENT AND AVAILABLE TO US. HE CONTINUES TO FEED US WITH HIS BODY AND BLOOD IN WHICH HIS REAL PRESENCE IS MANIFEST.
I LOOK FORWARD IN JOY TO SEE THE PARISH FAMILY GATHERED TOGETHER ONCE MORE.
AFTER AN APPEAL BY ONE OR TWO PERSONS, WE WILL BE BROADCASTING MASS THIS SUNDAY AND WEDNESDAY AS WE HAVE BEEN DOING AND THE FOLLOWING WEEK. HOWEVER, THERE WILL BE A BREAK BECAUSE OUR CHURCH IS OPEN FOR MASS, AND MOST, IF NOT ALL OF THOSE CLASSED AS VULNERABLE HAVE HAD THEIR COVID VACCINATION AND MANY HAVE HAD THEIR SECOND SHOT TOO. THE EXPECTATION IS THAT YOU WILL BE JOINING US IN CHURCH ONCE AGAIN AS THERE IS NO REASON NOT TO.
TO TUNE IN VIA FACEBOOK TO JOIN IN OUR WORSHIP PLEASE OPEN THE FACEBOOK APP ON YOUR PHONE OR DEVICE AND SEARCH FOR:
“St Martin’s Parish Church, Fenny Stratford “
SERVICES THIS SUNDAY:
8 am Mass.
10 am PARISH MASS for the Third Sunday in Lent.
This Sunday we are reminded that God does not wish anyone to perish everlastingly. He is our judge, but in his mercy he offers us sinners eternal life if only we will commit ourselves to the Son he sent to save us and work towards the conversion of our hearts and lives.
We are open. Worship of Almighty God and the celebration of Holy Mass continues. For those who wish to respond in love to Christ’s call to discipleship, His Body and Blood, the medicine for our souls and the gift that strengthens our incorporation into His Divine life, is very much available.
Spring Clean - Thanks for your help. For those unable to help on the day and yet wishing to lend a hand, please speak to Father Victor or Father Ian.
The Sick and Departed Lists - If you would like someone to be returned to the list or would like to add a name to either of these lists, please pass a written note or send an email to Fr. Victor at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Giving at Saint Martins - As I mentioned last week, a number of you have a direct debit arrangement in support of the parish and I thank you for helping to keep us going. Yet there are many who have been in the habit of making contributions through our envelope scheme or directly into the offertory plate on Sunday mornings. The ministry of the parish may have adapted and changed due to the pandemic, but it never stopped. When we weren’t allowed to use the church, services were broadcast over Facebook from the Vicarage Chapel. Then when churches were allowed the option to open, we opted to offer Mass in church to those who wanted to come and, at the same time, online services to those who, for various reasons, felt unable to attend in person for a short while.
Fr. Victor and Fr. Ian have tried their hardest to remain in telephone contact with everyone and weekly Parish Newsletters have been prepared and published via Facebook, WhatsApp and our Parish Website. All this on top of the usual round of visiting the sick, sick communions, funerals, baptisms and maintaining our church building has taken place.
All through this last year we have had to meet the usual expenditure of gas, electricity, water, building insurance (£3,000) telephone, sacristy and stationary supplies and spending on those things necessary to offer online services as well as the usual parochial expenses, such at travel costs for the clergy. And on top of all this the Wider Church has expected us to pay the usual contribution towards maintaining the ministry here in the Parish and across the Diocese which amounted to £27,400 last year of which we were able to pay £25,000.
While we have some money coming in from our parochial charity investments, this income has been, understandably much reduced, and has never, at the best of times, given us anywhere, near enough to meet our parochial outgoings.
THE BOTTOM LINE IS THAT MANY OF YOU HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO JOIN US IN CHURCH AND CONTRIBUTE SOMETHING TO THE PLATE COLLECTION OR ENVELOPE SCHEME BUT HAVE NONETHELESS RELIED ON OUR ONLINE BROADCASTS. I ASK YOU NOW TO EXAMINE YOUR CONSCIENCES AND IF YOU CAN CONTRIBUTE SOMETHING THAT WOULD HELP ENORMOUSLY.
MANY OF YOU HAVE TOLD OF HOW IMPORTANT IT HAD BEEN FOR YOU TO BE ABLE TO SHARE IN THE PARISH MASS AND OTHER SERVICES WE HAVE OFFERED ONLINE WHICH HAVE STILL COST US FINANCIALLY TO BROADCAST. PLEASE GIVE NOW AS GENEROUSLY AS YOU CAN.
IN RESPONSE TO A REQUEST THIS WEEK; CHEQUES CAN BE MADE PAYABLE TO:
Saint Martin’s P. C. C. No. 1 A/c
MANY THANKS IN ADVANCE.
EXTRA SERVICES DURING LENT
On The 5th Sunday of Lent, 21st, March, there will be a Service of Vespers and Benediction at 6 pm which will be broadcast via our Church Facebook page.
MASSES DURING THE WEEK WILL BE OFFERED AT THESE TIMES:
Tuesday at 7 pm
Wednesday at 12.15 pm (with Adoration from 11.45 am) and at 7.00 pm
Thursday at 10 am
Friday at 10 am
Saturday at 10 am
SERVICES NEXT SUNDAY
Low Mass at 8 am
Parish Mass at 10 am (The Fifth Sunday in Lent)
Vespers and Benediction at 6 pm
PLEASE don’t forget to contact me if you have any prayer requests or Mass intentions you would like me to offer at Mass or if would like someone added to our parish prayer list of the Sick or Departed.
My contact details are as follows:
Telephone: 01908 372825
I am also available in person during Surgery Hour on Saturday’s in Church between 10.30am - 12 noon.
THE SACRAMENT OF CONFESSION AND RECONCILIATION is also available at this time.
Please continue to remember the following in your prayers:
For a continued good keeping of this Lent as a Season of Grace.
For a drop in the rate of Covid infections and in the number of hospitalised victims.
For the continued rapid dissemination of the Vaccines for Covid 19 and for all working for this end.
Those who have found themselves out of work, particularly those who have families or other dependents to support.
Those who are despairing at the future of their businesses and those that work for them.
Those who continue to live in fear of this global pandemic and are living with anxiety and depression.
For the Government in their seeking solutions for the common good at this time.
For peace to reign within our homes and amongst one another.
For the elderly, housebound and those living in residential and nursing homes.
For our Ambulance Service and for our other Emergency Service Staff and for Milton Keynes Hospital and all who work there.
For Bishop Jonathan and all our parish clergy as they seek to continue to make present in our midst the Sacrifice of the Holy Mass, the Sacraments of Christ and offer continuing Pastoral care.
For Genesis Abbey, the Mother House of the Monastic Community of the House of Initia Nova of the Order of Saint Benedict. For it’s Abbot Michael-John Austin, the community and for those new to its life.
For the Sick: For Amie Reed, Rhodie Howard, Abbot Michael John Austin, Rachel Thurston, Paul Ward, Jean Holden, Peter White, Roger D’Elia, Norman Kent, Denis & Yvonne Simpson, David Lingham, Sandra Walduck, and Doris Weatherley.
For the Departed: For Shirley Milburn, John McDonald Moore, Grace Moore and all who have died recently, and for all those who have died of Covid 19.
We pray too for all whose years mind falls at this time, among them Agnes Turner, Alfred Peerless, Claude Debenham, Robert Wright, Derek Toye. Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord.
And let Light Perpetual shine upon them.
We live in the hope of the forgiveness of sins and life everlasting.
May God bless you and keep you.