Dear sisters and brothers,
Although Fr. Stephen will be here for Easter, this weekend we farewell him. Fr. Stephen’s humour and gentleness have been a great gift to this parish. Fr. Stephen is held with genuine affection by this community, which is a sign of his goodness and the sincerity of his ministry. We are thankfully for his time here, and we wish well for his return to Korea. We pray that whatever the future holds for Fr. Stephen, God will continue bless him and guide him in all that he does. Thank you Fr. Stephen and our prayers, thoughts and good wishes travel with you.
Speaking of assistant priests of St. Agatha’s, Fr. Brendan Dooley died on Saturday night, 12th March. Fr. Brendan was an Assistant Priest here at St. Agatha’s from 1961 to 1966. Some of you may remember his time here and his lyrical Irish accent. Let us give thanks for his priestly minister and pray that he may be welcomed into the joys of the Eternal Easter Feast.
This Sunday we celebrate the Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord (its official title), which means that Easter is at our door-step. If you are going away for the Easter break, we wish a safe trip, and holy, festive celebrations. If you are staying here, please think about joining us for the three celebrations of the Sacred Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and the Easter Vigil). The word “triduum” means “three days” and refers to the suffering, death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ which we recall and celebrate during the Easter ceremonies. These liturgies which happen over three days are really one liturgy. At the conclusion of the Holy Thursday liturgy, there is a procession of the Blessed Sacrament to the altar of reservation and, after a period of prayer, people depart in silence with no dismissal. The Good Friday liturgy begins with a silent procession, a period of silent prayer, and the opening prayer. It finishes with the prayer over the people. Again there is no final blessing or dismissal and we depart in silence.
One liturgy flows into the other. At the Easter Vigil we gather around a fire for the blessing of the fire and the lighting of the paschal candle. This three-day liturgy, which began with the entrance and greeting on Holy Thursday evening, has moved us from suffering through death to resurrection. The fullness of the Easter mystery is celebrated from a different perspective on each of the three days. The Triduum is not a re-enactment of past events separated into neat historical or liturgical compartments. The death and resurrection we celebrate is our dying and rising in Christ today. So I invite you to join us for the full rhythm of the Easter Triduum and experience the powerful unfolding celebration of our most fundamental and central story of hope and salvation.
|Jun 24, 2016||Palm Sunday 20.03.2016||Listen||Download|