“A Church attentive to the signs of the times. Even though to many young people, God, religion & the Church seem empty words, they are sensitive to the figure of Jesus when he is presented in an attractive & effective way. Consequently, the Church should not be excessively caught up in herself but instead, & above all, reflect Jesus Christ. This means humbly acknowledging that some things concretely need to change, & if that is to happen, she needs to appreciate the vision but also the criticisms of young people. The Synod recognised that “a substantial number of young people, for all sorts of reasons, do not ask the Church for anything because they do not see her as significant for their lives. Some even ask expressly to be left alone, as they find the presence of the Church a nuisance, even an irritant. This request does not always stem from uncritical or impulsive contempt. It can also have serious & understandable reasons: sexual & financial scandals; a clergy ill-prepared to engage effectively with the sensitivities of the young; lack of care in homily preparation & the presentation of the word of God; the passive role assigned to the young within the Christian community; the Church’s difficulty in explaining her doctrine & ethical positions to contemporary society.” (“Christus Vivit” by Pope Francis)
. Following the three meetings in Gilling, Oswaldkirk & Ampleforth in recent weeks, to allow all our local parishioners to contribute to the process of reforming the pastoral provision for the locality, Fr Gabriel’s discussion with his Council, & his announcement of 24/25th August 2019, the revised arrangements begin next weekend. From Sat 14th Sept, the 6pm Vigil Mass will be celebrated alternately in Ampleforth & Gilling East, beginning in Gilling East . (providentially on the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, the patronal feast of the Anglican Church in Gilling.) The final 9am Mass at Our Lady & the Holy Angels will be this weekend. Now that the holidays are over, & the majority of our parishioners in the wider locality are back, we will look towards arranging initial social gatherings in the three localities, to allow us to get to know each other, & thereby begin to look towards forming a Parish Council, to be operational by Christmas 2019. Please keep all of us involved in these changes in thought & prayer, as we try to help each other to see this as a fine opportunity for us to grow on together what has already been caringly, carefully & fruitfully planted & nurtured thus far.
I am away on holiday until this coming Tuesday. Fr Prior kindly arranged for Fr Xavier to cover our weekend Masses & for the final Mass at Gilling. We offer our love & congratulations to Eleanor Kirwan & her parents Megan & Gavin on her Baptism this weekend, with a special welcome to Gavin’s family from Ireland who have journeyed to join with us in prayer & presence. I am sorry there will be no weekday Mass on Monday & Tuesday this week. There is daily Mass at the Abbey at 8.45am & at Stanbrook Abbey at 9am. If there is urgent need of a priest in my absence, please contact Fr Edgar on 766435, or Fr Prior on 766712.