The Year of the Eucharist is being launched this Sunday by Bishop Robert. Perhaps we might think of giving an extra effort to becoming more acquainted with all aspects of the Eucharist in our churches and schools. Let’s face the reality that the next generation are not bothered. As is often my own experience in chatting with parents of smaller children; football and other activities are a priority on a Sunday morning. Young teenagers are now under great pressure not to come to Mass. For many it’s simply not on their radar at all. The mental strength that gathering as a community for worship is a given. All fields of psychology are clear on this. Statistics are there to prove it. Perhaps we, as part of these community gatherings need to look more closely on what makes it something we wish to share with our families and friends. I was speaking to someone who is recently arrived in our parish (3 years ago) and still hardly knows anyone. Covid, of course, has interrupted. But, nonetheless, surely there is a challenge here for us to reflect on. The contemplative dimension to the Eucharist is richer in our tradition than many. Do we appreciate that in the light of the desperate need, for young people especially, to break from the bombardment on the senses by media etc. Are we as adults able to appreciate our need for that silent gathering together in church that is so beneficial to the soul? As you can see from the bulletin, Katie ran a very successful Confirmation Exhibition at St. Leonard’s this week, where great interest was shown by all. Many thanks to Mr. Hammill and staff for their support. Now to Covid. It’s still there. Helpers and Ministers of the Eucharist please be careful. Thanks .
This Sunday we will receive a Pastoral Letter from Bishop Robert on The Year of the Eucharist and the invitation from Pope Francis on the Synod of the Laity. Obviously, much ground-work has been done in recent years with Forward Together in Hope. We now move on to a new phase of understanding of both lay involvement and Eucharistic insights. We also hope to have a Mass of Remembrance in the Vicariate for those who died of Covid. There will be more information on this soon. Covid still hovers, are some parishioners are discovering to their cost. A view is growing that it’s a return to normality. However, our schools’ heads will testify that this is not the case. We have much to be grateful for but we need to constantly question the assurances received that all is in control. It is not. We now lag behind other countries in strategies employed to get us through-despite some media stories to the contrary. Please continue to be cautious and responsible. We pray also that the return of students to Durham will be responsibly controlled by those in positions to do just that.