Blank Image
St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
Just some images of our church
blank image
blank image
blank image blank image blank image blank image blank image blank image
Previous Posts

Click here to go back


Monday, April 10, 2006

This Saturday 8:30 pm, St Mary Magdalen’s Church

According to a most ancient tradition, this night is 'one of vigil for the Lord' (Exodus 12 :42), and the Vigil celebrated during it, to commemorate that holy night when the Lord rose from the dead, is regarded as the 'mother of all holy vigils' (Saint Augustine, Sermo 219). For in that night, the Church keeps vigil, waiting for the resurrection of the Lord, and celebrates the sacraments of Christian initiation. The entire celebration of the Easter Vigil takes place at night.

The Passover Vigil, in which Hebrews kept watch for the Lord's Passover which was to free them from slavery to Pharaoh, is an annual commemoration. It prefigured the true PASCH of Christ that was to come, the night that is of true liberation, in which 'destroying the bonds of death, Christ rose as victor from the depths' (Roman Missal - The Easter Proclamation)
From the very outset, the Church has celebrated that annual PASCH, which is the solemnity of solemnities, above all by means of a night vigil. For the resurrection of Christ is the foundation of our faith and hope, and through baptism and confirmation, we are inserted into the Paschal mystery of Christ, dying, buried, and raised with him, we shall also reign.
The full meaning of Vigil is awaiting the coming of the Lord. Saint Augustine says : ‘We keep vigil on that night because the Lord rose from the dead; that life .. where there is no longer the sleep of death, began for us in his flesh; being thus risen, death will be no more nor have dominion... If we have kept vigil for the risen one, he will see that we shall reign with him for ever' (Sermo Guelferbitan).

Words taken from a 1988 Congregation for Divine Worship document.

posted by Sinead Reekie at 9:22 am

Monday, April 03, 2006


The Bishops Conference of England and Wales have just been strongly urging as many Catholics to oppose moves to legalise euthanasia and assisted suicide by supporting the Care Not Killing Alliance. Launched in January, this brings together medical groups, disability rights groups along with faith communities and others opposed to any change in the law on euthanasia. Telephone 020 7633 0770 or go to

On 12 May 2006 a Bill to legalise assisted suicide for the Terminally Ill will be debated in the House of Lords. This Private Member’s Bill is being promoted by Lord Joffe. It marks the next step in a concerted and highly organised campaign to legalise euthanasia and assisted suicide in England and Wales.

“We need Catholics to go to their MPs and say we do not want this law,” said Archbishop Peter Smith, who made the call on behalf of the Bishops. We are encouraging as many Catholics as possible to support the work of Care Not Killing in whatever way they can.”

He wrote the following words on death, in Evangelium Vitae, having jut powerfully rejected Euthanasia. They are also an appropriate for the upcoming Holy Week.

Quite different from this is the way of love and true mercy, which our common humanity calls for, and upon which faith in Christ the Redeemer, who died and rose again, sheds ever new light. The request which arises from the human heart in the supreme confrontation with suffering and death, especially when faced with the temptation to give up in utter desperation, is above all a request for companionship, sympathy and support in the time of trial. It is a plea for help to keep on hoping when all human hopes fail.

As the Second Vatican Council reminds us: "It is in the face of death that the riddle of human existence becomes most acute" and yet "man rightly follows the intuition of his heart when he abhors and repudiates the absolute ruin and total disappearance of his own person. Man rebels against death because he bears in himself an eternal seed which cannot be reduced to mere matter".This natural aversion to death and this incipient hope of immortality are illumined and brought to fulfilment by Christian faith, which both promises and offers a share in the victory of the Risen Christ. (para. 61)

posted by Sinead Reekie at 9:27 am