Fr Martin's Message
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, we are now able to open St Marys Church for mass from next weekend. The mass times are as follows:
Saturday 5th December 6.30pm Sunday 6th December: 8.00am, 9.30am, 11.30am
Weekday Masses: Tuesday The Solemnity The Immaculate Conception 9.15am and 7.30pm, Friday 7.30pm
Booking a place at weekend masses: Please contact the Parish Office, preferably by email, to book for the weekend masses. If you wish to book by telephone, please try to call during office opening times (Mon, Thurs & Fri mornings) and please do not call after 7.00pm if possible. Your booking will be automatically accepted so please do not expect a response unless we cannot accommodate you. Please remember at all masses in the Church you will need to wear a face mask. No need to book for a weekday mass. Parish email/Telephone: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01708 447761.
Christmas Masses: As long as there are no further announcements the Church will be open in time for Christmas. There will be a Parish Reconciliation Service with General Absolution on Tuesday 15th December at 7.30pm. Christmas masses will be as follows:
Christmas Eve Thursday 24th December 3 masses: 5:00pm, 7:00pm and 9:00pm
Christmas Day Friday 25th December 3 masses: 8:00am, 9.30am and 11.30am
News Years Eve Thursday 31st December 9:00pm
News Years Day Friday 1st January 10:00am This is our Parish Feast of St Mary Mother of God.
We are now taking bookings for Christmas masses. Please contact the Parish Office, preferably by email, to book for the Christmas masses. If you wish to book by telephone, please try to call during office opening times (Mon, Thurs & Fri mornings) and please do not call after 7.00pm if possible. Please give your name, telephone number, which mass you are booking for, and the number of places you need. Please note you can only sit with members of your household and one additional person who is in your support bubble. Your booking will be automatically accepted so please do not expect a response unless we cannot accommodate you. Please remember at all masses in the Church you will need to wear a face mask.
Christmas Offertory Collection: Just a reminder that the collection taken at the Christmas Masses as you leave church is your personal gift to your Priest. Together with the collection taken at Easter this provides a major part of their income for the year. Your generosity, as always, is greatly appreciated.
Newsletter: A weekly newsletter can be found above under ‘Newsletters’.
Volunteers: Volunteers needed to help keep clean the sacristy and help prepare things for mass. If you can help, even for an hour a week, please contact the parish office or see Fr Martin.
Food Bank: The SVP of the parish are asking for donations of food (non-perishable) for the local food bank. Please bring any food you can donate and leave it in the basket in the porch. Ideally leave it in a carrier bag.
Reception/Primary School: For those parents applying for their child at a Catholic Primary School and needing the Certificate of Catholic Practice, please email or call the parish leaving your name and telephone number and someone will contact you. Parents will need their child’s Baptismal Certificate and proof of address.
Church Open for Private Prayer: Thursday from 11:00am to 1:00pm. Please respect the following guidelines:
Open for private prayer only; Keep social distancing; Wash hands before and after visiting the church; use hand gel; do not touch statues, cross, stations of the cross etc. You will need to wear a mask. Thank you!
United in Prayer: Prayer is the way to open God’s heart. As suggested by the Bishops in their statement, let us join in a moment of national prayer at 6:00pm each day, praying for an end to this pandemic and for the sick and those who look after them at home or in hospital. I urge that we pray the rosary daily at 6pm, either individually or as a family. Several websites can help such as;
https://www.catholicity.com/prayer/rosary.html. You can also find an app. for the rosary on your mobile phone.
Catholic Faith: If you are not a Catholic and would like to know more about the Catholic faith, or you know someone who may be interested, please contact Fr Martin.
Offerings to the Parish: Many have contacted asking how can they donate their weekly offerings or give a gift to the parish. There are three ways you can donate to the parish.
- The Diocese of Brentwood have set up a donation page on their website (click here). Please remember to select Hornchurch 1- St Mary Mother of God when completing the form.
- Alternatively, you can set up direct debit directly with your bank using one the following form (Bank Standing Order).
- Contact the Parish Office for details of the Parish Bank Account.
- Post your offerings through the letterbox of the presbytery.
Please remember in your prayers Scott Cheesman, Maria Adesegha and Terrance Ross who died recently and the sick and housebound of the parish and those in hospital. If anyone is seriously ill and needs the priest, please ring the Presbytery.
Waiting in Joyful Hope
At Mass, after praying the Lord’s Prayer, we hear “. . . as we await the blessed hope and the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.” This prayer reminds us that during Advent, we wait in joy, in hope, and in anticipation for the wonderful event we are about to experience—the feast of Christmas, the coming of Christ into our lives in new ways, the return of Christ in glory at the end of time. As the Church, we wait during Advent and look forward to celebrating the fact that God loves us so much that he sent his Son into the world to save us. This waiting is far from empty; rather, it is full of the hope that God promises us as we prepare for Christ in the feast of Christmas.