Yet David’s dance before the ark had nothing in common with the showmanship of the professional entertainers in the present-day religious circus. I remember first watching a megashow of an evangelic preacher on American TV & hoping for a long time that it was just a comedy program caricaturing religion. I didn’t want to believe that someone could seriously believe that it is possible to talk about God with such vulgar matter - of-factness & propagate the Gospel as if it were some reliable brand of automobile. Spiritual joy was replaced by a cheap surrogate: entertainment – kitsch pandering to the taste of the unthinking consumers of today’s mass “entertainment industry.” It is truly sad to observe how those who ought to be prophets are transformed into embarrassing clowns. Prophets should be a people of truth. But the truth of the Gospel is not the same as the truth of a scientific theory (in the sense that the truth of science has been understood by the advocates of scientism & positivism). It cannot be confined in definitions & conflict-free closed systems. Jesus linked forever after three concepts -the truth, the way, & life. Truth, like the way & life, is in constant movement & process, although this process cannot be construed as unidirectional development & progress. The Bible leads us to the truth, not by means of definitions or theoretical systems, but through stories, through dramas both large & small – such as the story of Zacchaeus & thousands more. The best way for us to understand the biblical stories is to enter into them, to become involved in those dramas – at the very least like the participants in the sacred dramas of ancient Greece - & experience through them catharsis, our own transformations. If we want to talk about divine matters these days, we have to heal certain words resurrect them, because they have become exhausted under the weight of the many different meanings that people have imposed on them over the centuries. This brings to mind the lines of an old Church hymn, a burning supplication to the Spirit of God ..warm that which is cold, moisten that which is dry, heal that which is sick, move that which is rigid..& perhaps we could add another appeal “bring closer that which is distant” [ welcome the distant presence of Zacchaeus in your life ] (Patience & God; Tomas Halik) On Data Protection progress, thank you to those 89 of you who have completed a Consent Form. We need a Consent Form for each family member over the age of thirteen; please name children under thirteen on your own Consent Form. As we welcome home some of our students from College &University, could I ask you too to complete & sign a Form? Until we receive your Form we are not permitted to make contact with you, as you have yet to give your express permission. There have been 15 occasions since the legislation was introduced on 25 May 2018 where I have been unable to make contact with individuals for whom I have as yet no consent. Could I encourage you to ask members of your family who do not attend our Parish, or who attend elsewhere, to consider being registered with us here? We hold pastoral responsibility for all baptised Catholics who live within our parish boundaries, & it is vital for the spiritual, administrative & practical well-being of the Parish that we are fully aware of those to whom we owe the love & duty of care. Could I remind you please that Bishop Terence Patrick & the Diocese are seeking expressions of interest from practising Catholics to act as Foundation Governors, & non practising Catholics as non-foundation Governors for our new Catholic Academy Trust, under the patronage of St Margaret Clitherow. I would seriously & warmly encourage those of you who may feel unworthy, yet called by the Holy Spirit, to seek to be considered for such important positions of responsibility for the continued growth of our collective “Schools of the Lord’s Service”. I can give you a background paper on the role & an expression of interest form which needed to be returned to the Diocese by last Friday 6th July 2018. I am sure a late application will be gratefully received & fully considered. It would be a blessing for us, as one of the smallest schools in the Diocese, to have representation on this key Body. Sadly our Retreat for our Yr 6 pupils at St Benedict’s PS at the Abbey this weekend had to be cancelled, as only three of the twelve pupils made a commitment to come. It is disappointing that the eagerness of the teaching staff [four staff asked to come ] wasn’t matched by parental support for such an important spiritual 24hrs in the growth of our children’s faith in this important transition moment from Catholic Primary into secular Secondary Education where, for all the strengths of All Saints in York with its Outstanding rating in Ofsted & Sect 48 RE, it proves to be a step too far for most parents. Please pray for all our pupils staff governors & parents on Wednesday on the Feast of St Benedict their patronal feast. There will be Midday Prayer in School at 1130am on Wednesday, to which the Parish is warmly invited. On your behalf can I offer our deep appreciation to David & Eve Cragg-James, & Mary Sturges, & indeed the many others in their team, who worked tirelessly to prepare every detail for the welcome of our Asylum Seekers & their families last Sunday on Justice First Day. The heat & the warmth of welcome & hospitality combined to give the many guests from warmer climes a home from home tremendously joyful day as, in welcoming them, we welcomed Christ himself. With love & prayers Fr Bede.