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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
Just some images of our church
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Sunday, October 23, 2005
The Return of The King

In two wks' time we will be using the sacred space of our Church in an unusual manner.
Most of the forty or so groups within the parish will be highlighting what they do, and inviting involvement of new faces. It should be a great and important occasion for the development of our work for God here.
Groups with a primarily spiritual and/or liturgical purpose will be at the front with youth and adult formation on the right and groups supporting the parish and wider community in other ways on the left, at the back and in the sacristy and annexe.
At the end of the afternoon, at 5 p.m. we will bring back in the Blessed Sacrament in a solemn procession, marking the end of the Year of the Eucharist.
Due to the fact that we don't have an adjoining hall occasionally we use our sacred space in a way that does not fall within its main purpose of communal & private worship.
This is a good moment to remember this primary purpose of the Church building, the House of God, which after all we have recently spent so much (of your) money upon.
It is the space where Christ is really present among His people, for his people, in the Blessed Sacrament within the Tabernacle or “Tent”. It is the fulfillment of the 'Tent of Meeting' where Moses came into the divine presence on behalf of his journeying people. This space in turn became the Temple which is fulfilled by Christ himself especially in the tabernacle of all Catholic Churches.
Pope Benedict has in the past tried to remind us that this sacred space is not like many other spaces – that need to be being “used” by us to be meaningful. Its meaning comes from the presence of the Creator amongst His creatures. This primary purpose is always being fulfilled even when empty. Whilst the sanctuary lamp burns and the Tabernacle veil veils and reveals the presence of the Blessed Sacrament it is a saving space.
The Pope asks us to guard against the old English heresy of ‘Pelagianism’. This way of thinking saw our own efforts as more important than God’s presence. The reverse is true: God acts, we cooperate. We are simply meant to say “Let it be done to me according to your Word”. Benedict feels that one way to combat the real reemergence of the Pelagian emphasis is to remember the central and perennial importance of the sacred space of our Churches with the Tabernacle at its centre.Because our Parish Fayre will not involve explicit worship of this Presence we will remove the Blessed Sacrament shortly before it begins. The sanctuary light will be off and the tabernacle veil will be removed, and the tabernacle doors left open. And then as the culmination of our deliberations and the culmination of the Year of the Eucharist He will return – at 5:00 p.m.

posted by Saint Mary Magalene Church at 8:57 am

Sunday, October 09, 2005
An Alternative Culture
Tomorrow there is due to be a debate in the House of Lords on the Assisted Dying for the Terminally Ill Bill. This Bill as currently envisaged would allow patients, under some circumstances, to be killed, for instance by a lethal injection. It comes hard on the heals of the Mental Capacity Bill becoming law which despite small concessions following Catholic lobbying has been a definite move in the Euthanasia direction (see next week for more info. on this and how to protect ourselves).

It seems that the Government is not going to oppose this Bill, despite assurances given to Archbishop Smith. So the Bill may be voted upon shortly. It is important that we contact our M.P. and a Peer (see list of peers on the noticeboard to the right of the main Knights noticeboard and then please choose one whose surname has the same first letter as yours). Also, if you have internet access go to where the All Party Parliamentary Group on Compassion in Dying have a questionnaire for all to fill out. This group has been working closely with the Voluntary Euthanasia Society. They desperately need to hear Christ’s approach to compassion. (by 21st Oct)

Intentional killing of the innocent is wrong even if the person agrees to be killed. This is because such ‘Euthanasia’ undermines the very foundations and purpose of creation and society, which is the growth and flourishing of each individual human person. This is why virtually all cultures see what is called “murder” as something which is very wrong. They recognize that taking innocent life hits at the heart of what it means to be a human person. It can never be truly ‘compassionate’.

This is just the way God has made the world. Kill an innocent person and you always, without fail, wound God's plan, and human society, as well as that person! This is Christ’s teaching through His Church from the earliest times

The Bill will probably specify that there needs to be some form of request for killing by the patient. But experts agree that, as has happened in Holland, pressure on the voluntary component mounts in all sorts of ways.
And so our anti-life culture continues to progress towards its Brave New World. Tragically abortions and family breakdown are up. Teenage suicide, promiscuity and threatening behaviour are up. A crisis of, among other things, pension provision looms because we do not allow enough children to live to replace those dying. In short we are not fostering that social and economic development which all commun-ities need to survive. Let’s swim against the flow on this one – with the live fish.

posted by Saint Mary Magalene Church at 9:04 am

Sunday, October 02, 2005
VISITATIONS PAST - in the porch

We’ve just passed the One Hundredth mark. Although parish borders had still not been set on Rosary Sunday 1st October 1905 the first Mass was said at the newly rented 28 Park Ave. This was a large house on the corner of St Paul’s Ave. Ground floor rooms had been converted into a chapel. Fr Herbert Vaughan was appointed the first resident ‘Rector’ of the recently formed parish of Willesden Green.

Please see the porch display spanning this last one Hundred from its humble beginnings through to our recent building work. From the early football team (including it seems a Cassocked Parish Priest) to the more recent building of our Annexe by the bare hands of our own Knights of St Columba. Play ‘Spot the Parish Priest.’ Each one is there. The photos of Cardinal Hume amongst us were of his last, 1999, visitation, just a few days before he died.

VISITATION FUTURE - in the pulpit

It is appropriate then that next week we have a pastoral visitation by one of our diocese’s auxiliary Bishops who was appointed as an assist-ant to Cardinal Hume, Bishop George Stack. The Bishop’s role is to oversee the parishes in his diocese. It is the tradition that he makes a formal “Episcopal Visitation” to check everything’s going O.K!
This represents and makes present the coming of Christ the Bridegroom and Head of the Church. It will be a moment of particular bless-ing for us in our centenary year. He will preach at all Masses next weekend. Listen with especial care for the personal Word that God has for you at this time. See over for some more information concerning his itinerary.

posted by Saint Mary Magalene Church at 11:55 am