26 July 2020

Sunday

Mass

31 July 2020

Friday

Mass

Pope Francis - The Hidden Treasure - The Kingdom of Heaven

The treasure is the Kingdom of God, found through Jesus Christ. To obtain this treasure, our hearts must burn with desire to seek and find it. Christ is the hidden treasure - the pearl of great value. Christ is the fundamental discovery, which can make a decisive turning point in our lives, filling them with meaning. Today's Gospel urges us to contemplate the joy of the farmer and the merchant, a joy that is for each of us to discover in the consoling presence of Jesus in our lives. And this presence is one that transforms our hearts, opens us up to the needs of our brothers and sisters, in particular those that are weaker than us.'

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Readings 26 July 2020 - 17th Sunday - Ordinary Time 1 Kings 3:5,7-12; Ps 118(119); Rom 8:28-30; Mt 13:44-52
We scarcely need the wisdom of Solomon to realise that in finding God's love and God's Kingdom,

we have found priceless treasures. We celebrate today in the joy of this realisation.

After David's death his son, Solomon, became king. Until Solomon built the Temple, sacrificing to God in high places was acceptable. It was during one such sacrifice that God appeared in a dream asking Solomon what he most wanted. In humility Solomon asked for a discerning judgement, rightly earning God's praise.

The Psalm praises God's law as the supreme rule for life because it is designed to help us become who we are meant to be.

Paul continues describing life in the Spirit to the Romans. Christians should try to reproduce in themselves images of Christ by progressively sharing in his risen life. God prepares those called to do his work and cooperates with them. Each individual is called for some task in God's plan for salvation. Those who love him will share in his glory. This includes not only Christians and others of goodwill, but also the Jews, "the ones he chose specially long ago".

 

Matthew's Gospel compares the Kingdom of Heaven to the greatest treasure found either accidentally or after a search, and then compares the Kingdom to a dragnet: the good fish will be kept and those of no use will be thrown in the furnace. There is a surprise ending: not all old treasures should be thrown away, some should be kept - like Israel's Scriptures, our Old Testament.

Psalm Response: Lord, how I love your law!

Word of God, you brought the light of eternity to the darkened world: may it open the minds and hearts

of all the children of the Church.- Lord Jesus Christ, you are our light.

Let us pray during the week for

The Church, Pope Francis; Bishop David, the Clergy; our Parish; the lonely and frightened.

The faithful departed - those mourning. The sick - their careers. All affected by the virus. Key workers.

World leaders to work with those seeking medical solution to be freely and globally shared.

The third world where the risk of the pandemic is heightened by food and medicine shortages.

Those awaiting sacraments of Penance, Communion & Confirmation. The unborn child and sanctity of life. Our own intentions and in thanks to God for his gifts and unconditional love.

For the safe re-opening of our Churches.

Let us also pray for our Town that the special measures taken will rapidly combat the spread of the virus.

We love Him because He first loved us. 1John 4:19

We were created by God to know Him and love Him in a permanent, personal relationship.

The eternal plan to reconcile man with God, to forgive us all our sins, originated in the heart of God.

It was motivated by His great love. For God so loved us that He gave His Son whom He loved -

His most precious treasure - everything He had - to offer us eternal life.

One thing we can know for sure is that God loves us. How do we know that? We know it just by looking

at the cross where He proved His love for the world that mocks Him, ignores Him, scorns and rejects Him.

We know that, when we look at His cross and see, 'I love you', written in His blood.

(My Jesus is Everything - Anne Graham Lotz)

I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ,

or at least an openness to letting Christ encounter them: I ask all of you to do this unfailingly each day.

No one should think that this invitation is not meant for him or her, since: "no one is excluded from the joy brought by the Lord." Pope Francis - Evangelii Gaudium

These are the rules on public worship continuing - please speak to a steward if you have a query.

         No toilet facilities are available - you must not enter Sacristy or Church Room before or after Mass.

         No singing - no sign of peace - offertory collections/ processions not allowed.

         Holy Communion must be taken in the hand - remain in the pew until called by a steward

         The Priest says the Prayer after Communion, gives the Blessing and the Dismissal

The Dispensation from attending Sunday Mass still applies.

Do you wish to honour the Body of Christ? Then do not disdain Him when you see Him in rags. After having honoured Him in church do not leave him to die of cold outside for lack of clothing.

St John Chrysostom

EVERYTHING ULTIMATELY IS LOVE: GOD, HIS KINGDOM AND HIS RULE

The kingdom of God means a community of people doing only the will of God. Like, for example in the Most blessed Trinity, where the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit have a common Will - constituting a single Will- 'the Will of God' and does always the Will of God.

The will of God is that we become his children by growing in love. Mostly, what we want and search for is selfish gratification, wealth, possessions, power, pleasure, security, comfort, recognition, acceptance etc. Instead the only valuable pearl and treasure is Jesus. Why Jesus is the only treasure or pearl? Because Jesus is the only lasting goodness. Jesus is the eternally lasting love of God and love of humanity. He is our typical prototype of receiving love and sharing love. When we receive and share nothing but love we are in the kingdom of God. It is worth sacrificing everything else for such a treasure and pearl.

We hide Christ in the darkness of selfishness - Christ is hidden in our misplaced and mistaken expectations. We are often victims of our inability to look beyond our own thinking, feelings and judgements to see the extended hand of God leading us in the path of love. The Kingdom of God looks beyond human ways to see the Divine Way. Jesus reminds us " I AM THE WAY THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE." Lord Jesus, bless me to search and find your ways. Bless me to walk in your ways.

Parishioners have asked how to keep up their Parish weekly offerings or to make donations.

Direct to the Parish - Make a Standing Order/Direct Debit/ One-Off Donation with your bank to pay to

Account Name: RCDN St Patrick Duston Branch Sort Code: 60-06-11 Account Number: 59820640.

Please let Fr Benny know if as a tax payer you want us to reclaim any tax paid on your offering (at no extra cost). We will send you a Gift Aid Declaration form to complete and return to the church.

You can also use 'Giving Tuesday' by calling the Diocesan Finance Office on 01604 712065, between 10:00am and 4:00pm, and donate to the parish. Have your debit or credit card ready when you call to make a one-off donation or to cover any missed Sunday offerings - specifying the offering is for St Patrick's Duston.

If the line is busy you are asked to leave only your telephone number and your name - you will be called back.

We know at present many families are struggling financially so please just do what you can.

There will be Mass on Sundays and Fridays at 9.30 am

God has saved us and called us to be holy, not because of anything we ourselves have done

but for his own purpose and by his own grace. This grace had already been granted to us, in Christ Jesus, before the beginning of time. 2 Timothy 1:9