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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
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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