AN ANNOUNCEMENT FROM OUR PARISH PRIEST, FR AARON:
The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales have announced that public worship will be suspended from Friday evening (March 20th)
“In response to the Coronavirus pandemic, so many aspects of our lives must change. This includes the ways in which we publicly express our faith. It is very clear that, following official advice and in order to keep each other safe, save lives and support the NHS, at this time we must not gather for public acts of worship in our churches. This will begin from Friday evening, 20th March 2020, until further notice.
Our churches will remain open. They are not closing. They will be a focal point of prayer, where you will find solace and strength. In visiting our churches at this time, we will observe with great care the practices of hygiene and the guidance on social distancing.
However, the celebration of Mass, Sunday by Sunday and day by day, will take place without a public congregation.
Knowing that the Mass is being celebrated; joining in spiritually in that celebration; watching the live-streaming of the Mass; following its prayers at home; making an act of spiritual communion: this is how we share in the Sacrifice of Christ in these days. These are the ways in which we will sanctify Sunday, and indeed every day.
We want everyone to understand that in these emergency circumstances, and for as long as they last, the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days is removed. This is, without doubt, the teaching of the Church (Catechism of the Catholic Church 2181). This pandemic is the ‘serious reason’ why this obligation does not apply at this time.”
This means there will sadly be no public Mass at Our Lady of Consolation until further notice.
The Pilgrimage programme for 2020 will also be suspended until further notice
However, the church will be open for prayer and at certain times, reconciliation, except when Mass is celebrated, as we have been instructed to say these privately behind closed doors – Fr David or I will celebrate the Masses.
Please check the Parish website and noticeboard for details of opening times and times for prayer.
Until such time that public health advice is that congregations can gather safely:
All baptisms will be deferred, except in case of necessity.
Confession may be offered on request as long as hygiene and social distancing requirements are observed.
Funerals and Weddings – please contact the Parish Priest.
Please make sure you check the Parish Website, St John’s Church, Horsham website, the Facebook Page of St John’s Church where I can update you all more regularly @stjohnscatholicchurchhorshamuk and the Parish Twitter Account @catholichorsham to find up-to-date information.
I am so sorry about this decision, taken out of my hands, it is made for the good of those who are vulnerable and for assisting our NHS.
The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life and to be without it and to not be able to gather for the Mass is a deep wound in our hearts. I shall remain available if you need me, if you need the Sacrament of the Sick or the Last Rites call me.
I shall keep you all in my prayers as we walk the Way of the Cross together. Our Lent will last longer than anticipated.
We are in communion together but it a different way. I encourage families to pray together at home, keep the Sunday holy, and I will direct parishioners to resources that are available.
I will endeavour to set-up live streaming of Mass here at St John’s, as soon as possible, so that at least we can participate in the Sacrifice of Mass albeit at a distance.
Parish Emergency Mobile: 07566 277227
In the meantime: Live Mass is streamed from St Mary of the Angels, Worthing at 10.30am SUNDAY & 10.00am Weekdays (7.30pm Wednesdays). Go to: https://www.stmaryoftheangels.org.uk/catholic-mass-online/
Also, live Mass is streamed at the following times from Sacred Heart Church, Hove: Monday: 10:00am; Tuesday: 10:00am; Wednesday: 8:00am; Thursday: Noon; Friday: 8:00am; First Saturday of the Month: Noon; Saturday: 6:00pm; Sunday: 9:30am and 11:30am
Please visit http://www.sacredhearthove.org.uk/videos.html
Finally, there is a streaming at 12 Noon each day from the Catholic Shrine at Walsingham: http://www.walsingham.org.uk/live-stream
FINALLY, PLEASE CLICK ON THE ‘DOWNLOAD THIS WEEK’S NEWSSHEET’ below TO MAKE A SPIRITUAL COMMUNION – WITH THIS WEEK’S HOMILY