Preparing for Mass on the Third Sunday of Advent

Living Eucharist

Responsorial Psalm 146 (145): 6 – 10

We look for healing, hope, encouragement. But where can we safely look for it?

It is the Lord who is able ultimately to grant blessing to his people – others have no ultimate agency in this world or the next.

We safely look to the Lord for our needs, and to him we best entrust our hopes…

1 Alleluia!

My soul, give praise to the Lord;
2 I will praise the Lord all my life,
sing praise to my God while I live.

3 Put no trust in princes,
in mortal man who cannot save.
4 Take their breath, they return to the earth,
and their plans that day come to nothing.

5 Blessed is he who is helped by Jacob’s God,
whose hope is in the Lord his God,
6 who made the heavens and the earth,
the seas and all they…

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Preparing for Mass on the Third Sunday of Advent

Living Eucharist

The reading that we hear as our Second reading on Sunday follows after some of the most strident and condemnatory words in the New Testament. It also comes before some of the most hopeful and encouraging. The context is shown in the fuller passage from James’ letter, given below.

Both critique and consolation come from what James know and teaches about the Lord and the kingdom. In him we are to place our trust and from him derive our way of life.

Bear these things, as you cast your vote in today’s General Election!

James: Chapter 5
Warning to the Rich
5 Come now, you rich, weep and howl for the miseries that are coming upon you. 2 Your riches have rotted and your garments are moth-eaten. 3 Your gold and silver have corroded, and their corrosion will be evidence against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You…

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Prayer at the time of the General Election

God of grace and truth,
send your Spirit to guide us
as we seek to discover your will for our country,
and consider how best to cast our vote.

Help us as we continue to discuss the issues before us
with courtesy, truth and mutual respect,
and grant that all who stand for parliament
will seek to serve the common good,
after the example of Jesus who came not to be served but to serve.

Support and sustain us
as we receive and respond to the result of the election.
Help us play our part in the continuing life
of our communities and our nation.

We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ
who lives and reigns with you and with the Holy Spirit
one God for ever and ever.

Re-dedication of England to Our Lady

Deanery of Birmingham (North)

Over the past two years the renowned Statue of Our Lady of Walsingham has been visiting every Catholic Cathedral in England with a mission to pray for the Re-evangelisation and Conversion of England. We are looking towards the Dowry Tour finale when all England is invited to renew their own personal “YES” to the Lord Jesus through Parish communal acts of preparation for Consecration to Jesus through Mary and a pledge to commit to regular Confession, the praying of the Angelus, Rosary and prayerful invocation of the Saints and Martyrs of England as on-going prayer for our Nation and the entire British Isles.

Read here the information booklet prepared for the visits of the statue to England’s Cathedrals

Visit the project’s website here.

Timeline for 2020’s re-dedication of England
as the Dowry of Mary

“A spiritual renewal to help facilitate the New Evangelisation”
• 1st January 2020: On the…

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Preparing for Mass on the Third Sunday of Advent

Living Eucharist

Gospel Reading Matthew 11.2-11

John the Baptist was at the centre of the Gospel reading last week, and is prominent this week also. However the reading this week treats of his doubts and his uncertainties.

The episode proclaimed to us this Sunday comes from a section of Matthew’s Gospel where Jesus speaks of discipleship and its cost.

Jesus himself will pay the cost, and so will the other disciples, so will we. The episode regarding John the Baptist reminds us all that it is rarely easy to pay that cost.

But pay that cost, John will – and reap the reward of eternal life.

Chapter 10
Jesus Sends Out the Twelve Apostles
5 These twelve Jesus sent out, instructing them, “Go nowhere among the Gentiles and enter no town of the Samaritans, 6 but go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 7 And proclaim as you…

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Living Eucharist: The Church – faithful, and light for the world?

Living Eucharist

The Gospel yesterday reminded of the need for purification and renewal.

In due course John the Baptist appeared; he preached in the wilderness of Judaea and this was his message: ‘Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is close at hand.’ This was the man the prophet Isaiah spoke of when he said:

A voice cries in the wilderness:
Prepare a way for the Lord,
make his paths straight.

This man John wore a garment made of camel-hair with a leather belt round his waist, and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then Jerusalem and all Judaea and the whole Jordan district made their way to him, and as they were baptised by him in the river Jordan they confessed their sins. But when he saw a number of Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism he said to them, ‘Brood of vipers, who warned you to fly from the retribution…

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St. John Baptist. A poem by Thomas Merton

Living Eucharist


When, for the fifteenth year, Tiberius Caesar
Cursed, with his reign, the Roman world,
Sharing the Near-East with a tribe of tetrarchs,
The Word of God was made in far-off province:
Deliverance from the herd of armored cattle,
When, from the desert, John came down to Jordan.

But his prophetic messages
Were worded in a code the scribes were not prepared to understand.
Where, in their lexicons, was written: “Brood of vipers,”
Applied, that is, to them?

“Who is this Lamb, Whose love
Shall fall upon His people like an army:
Who is this Savior, Whose sandal-latchet
This furious Precursor is afraid to loose?”

His words of mercy and of patience shall be flails
Appointed for the separation of the wheat and chaff.
But who shall fear the violence
And crisis of His threshing-floor
Except the envious and selfish heart?
Choose to be chaff, and fear the Winnower,

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