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St. Mary Magdalen's
Catholic Church
Willesden Green
London NW10
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Monday, March 22, 2010
Fifth Sunday of Lent 21.03.10
The UK Government and the Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of Scotland, England and Wales announced last week the visit to the United Kingdom of His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI. At a joint press conference, they said that the Papal Visit represents an unprecedented opportunity to strengthen ties between the UK and the Holy See on global initiatives, as well as the important role of faith in creating strong communities.
The Most Reverend Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster and President of the Catholics Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, said:

“As Catholics we are delighted to welcome Pope Benedict. We thank Her Majesty The Queen and her government for extending this historic invitation to His Holiness. “We are confident that the presence and message of Pope Benedict will encourage everyone to aspire again to a vision of life in our society marked by mutual trust, compassion and truth. The great Christian tradition of faith and life, which has so shaped our culture, has so much more to offer. This gentle yet profound teacher of his faith will encourage and strengthen all who receive his words.”

The Pope will be received at the Palace of Holyrood House by Her Majesty The Queen. His Holiness will give a major speech to British civil society at Westminster Hall, where the trial of St Thomas More took place. He will also visit the West Midlands to beatify the nineteenth century theologian and educationalist Cardinal John Henry Newman at a public mass in Coventry.

Other key elements of the visit will include a public mass in Glasgow, a prayer vigil in London and an event focusing on education. Relations between the Christian Churches will be a theme of the visit as will the relations between the major faiths. The Pope will visit the Archbishop of Canterbury at Lambeth Palace and pray with other Church leaders at Westminster Abbey.
Full details of the visit are available on the Westminster web site –

posted by Sinead Reekie at 10:04 am

Saturday, March 13, 2010
Last week the Vatican press spokesman affirmed that sexual abuse of minors by authorities in the Church is "particularly reprehensible." He also cautioned against seeing the problem as only a Church issue, since the reality of abuse "is much broader" and extends to society as a whole.

Father Lombardi noted that, concerning the recent Irish crisis, the Holy Father has met the Bishops and is currently preparing a special letter. Now the scandal has involved the Church in central Europe. The local Churches there have "faced the emergence of [the] problem with timely and decisive action." He said they have "demonstrated their desire for transparency and, in a certain sense, accelerated the emergence of the problem by inviting victims to speak out, even when the cases involved date from many years ago”. Indeed the "correct starting point is recognition of what happened and concern for the victims and the consequences of the acts committed against them." The Church is identifying a "prevention strategy, so that everything possible may be done to ensure that similar cases are not repeated in the future,"

Father Lombardi said the scandals should be "placed in a more wide-ranging context that concerns the protection of children and young people from sexual abuse in society as a whole."

He explained: "Certainly, the errors committed in ecclesiastical institutions and by Church figures are particularly reprehensible because of the Church's educational and moral responsibility, but all objective and well-informed people know that the question is much broader, and concentrating accusations against the Church alone gives a false perspective. By way of example, recent data supplied by the competent authorities in Austria shows that, over the same period of time, the number of proven cases in Church institutions was 17, while there were 510 other cases in other areas. It would be as well to concern ourselves also with them." The spokesman lauded widely supported initiatives in Germany to "consider the question from an appropriate and comprehensive viewpoint."

The press officer added that, concerning the Church’s “canon law, the crime of the sexual abuse of minors has always been considered as one of the most serious of all, and canonical norms have constantly reaffirmed this." Other commentators have pointed out how a certain disregard for Canon Law had developed in the Church in recent decades which meant that, as the Irish Inquiries have pointed out, appropriate punishments were not applied.

Finally, Father Lombardi concluded by saying that the "seriousness of the difficulties" facing the Church "cannot be denied.” She must “ensure that, in the end, they bring positive results, of better protection for infancy and youth in the Church and in society, and the purification of the Church herself." [adjusted from a report]

posted by Sinead Reekie at 12:06 pm

Saturday, March 06, 2010
Third Sunday of Lent –Year C – 7th March 2010
This is in addition to the patron saints medals we explained on front of 4th Sunday of the Year, 30TH January 2010- see our website, under “Reflections”

Our Lady of Mount Carmel (also known as Scapula feast) is associated with the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel; whoever dies wearing the scapular would be saved a promise by Our Lady. The liturgical feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel is celebrated on 16th July
Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal – feast day 28th November “all those who carry this will receive Grace in abundance, especially those who wear it around their neck and say their prayer confidently, they will receive special protection from the Mother of God and abundant graces” message to St Catherine Laboure to the wearers of the medal.
St. Pio of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio) – feast 23rd September, patron saint of the unborn
Solemnity of Mary Mother of God (Holy Day of Obligation) – feast day 1st January. Mary the mother Jesus Christ
Solemnity of Our Lady of Walsingham – feast day 24th September (England); Patroness of England.
Infant of Prague – feast day 1st Sunday in May - Infant Jesus Patron of those in poverty, danger, sorrow, anxiety, spiritual darkness, despair & illness.
Divine Mercy – feast day 2nd Sunday of Easter – “I demand from you deeds of mercy which are to arise out of love for me. You are to show mercy to your neighbours always and everywhere. You must not shrink from this or try to excuse yourself from it” message to Sister Faustina
Holy Guardian Angel – feast day 2nd October
Holy Spirit – feast day is Pentecost Sunday – The arrival of the “Comforter” (the Holy Spirit) as promised by Jesus Christ before his ascension into heaven
The Sacred Heart of Jesus – feast day 19 days after Pentecost - is also a special Day of Prayer for the Sanctification of Priests

posted by Sinead Reekie at 11:32 am