By now, you will have heard the good news that churches will be able to resume public Masses from 4th July. This is welcome news for our parish and the wider church. On Friday we will receive written guidance from the Bishops' Conference. On Friday afternoon there will be a meeting of the Council of Deans with the Cardinal and auxiliary bishops, and next week we hope to hold a deanery meeting. In addition to these meetings, parish staff are meeting each day to prepare for this next important step.

We have much to do, and we will be looking for help again from parishioners. We are working hard and as fast as we can to make sure everything is in place to do this properly and safely. Please note that things will be different to how they were before the crisis, and we will all need to be generous in adapting our old habits to the new procedures. Everyone will be relying on the patience and cheerful cooperation of the whole parish. In the next week, we will be able to announce what date this parish will begin public Masses, how they will be organised, and at what times they will take place. Please see this statement from the Catholic archbishops in England for more information:

https://rcdow.org.uk/news/archbishops-message-to-the-faithful-about-the-celebration-of-public-liturgies/

REOPENING OF OUR LADY OF LOURDES CHURCH
From Monday, our church will be open every day, initially from 12pm-2pm. We understand these hours are limited but they will allow us to become accustomed with the new procedures we have been working on. Thank you to all those who have volunteered to help. Our church is a safe and welcoming place for all who want to visit. You might like to pray quietly, visit the Blessed Sacrament, or light candles. If you do come, please bear in mind the following:
•    The church is open for private, silent prayer only. We kindly ask that parishioners do not gather in groups to pray out loud.
•    Please observe the 2m social distance policy.
•    Please use the hand sanitiser on the way in and the way out.
•    There is a one-way system (in through the normal doors, and out through the central doors)
•    The pews are marked where you can and cannot sit.
•    Please don't bring anything with you to leave behind in the church.
•    There are no toilet facilities available, either in the church or the hall.
•    Please note that although our office is now being manned on some days, it is still closed to visitors. We ask that you either phone or email us but please don't ring the doorbell as we will not be able to let you into the presbytery.
Most of all, we are really pleased to reopen the church. We know that many of you will appreciate the opportunity to visit this house of prayer and peace. God bless you all.

Information Update

Thank you to those who joined us online for the Q&A session on Wednesday morning. Here is a summary of the information.

Thank you everyone!

Thank you all for your patience in the current situation, and for all the kind messages and cards we have received in support of our work. Thank you also for being so great at looking out for each other, especially the most vulnerable or isolated. We also want to thank you for your continued financial support of the parish. We appreciate everything that you are doing. Most of all, keep praying!

Please follow us on Facebook for further news, updates and to keep in touch. You can search for Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church New Southgate or @RCNewSouthgate or go to this link: Facebook Page. Please spread the word.

Virgin Money Giving General Donations Click here for General Donations

Easter Collection Click here for Easter Collection

We're very grateful to you all for continuing to give generously towards our parish. Even in lockdown, the pastoral mission of the parish continues. We have important responsibilities to meet pastorally as well as the stewardship of our church and premises. We do hope that even in these difficult times, you feel able to continue contributing towards our life and work here.

Church Services TV have contacted us to apologise for the trouble with the feed. As you can imagine, the traffic on our site and theirs has increased by such a huge amount. They are working to increase capacity, but as they do so demand continues to rise. Thank you for your patience as we understand this is an important way for our parishioners and others to pray during this difficult time. We are aware of the ongoing work on this, but there is not much we can do at our end. Hopefully, it should be resolved soon. God bless you and thank you.

Fr David Reilly

 
OBLIGATION ON EASTER DUTIES REMOVED
Please see the link below which includes a message from the Cardinal, reflecting on the fact that our obligation to receive Holy Communion 'at least once a year at Easter or thereabouts' is removed this year. So also, therefore, is the need to celebrate reconciliation before doing so. As we sadly cannot approach these sacraments at this time, we are reminded that it is sufficient to make a perfect act of contrition and to resolve to go to confession as soon as it becomes available. Please see the link to the diocesan website: https://rcdow.org.uk/cardinal/news/cardinal-obligation-to-easter-duties-removed-this-year/

WAY OF THE CROSS
We will celebrate the Way of the Cross live on Friday morning after the 10am Mass. This Way of the Cross was also prepared by some priests for YouTube - thank you to the priests of St John Vianney Parish, Leeds. Parishioners here might like pray with it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2eueczgYVJY

 

 
CHURCH CLOSED
With regret we announce that the church is now completely closed. This is a decision of the bishops following instructions received from the Government. There have been some mixed messages in the media, but please note that the church will not be open for private prayer - please STAY AT HOME and join us in prayer (and online) if you can. God bless you all.

Fr. David Reilly

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Jesus Christ,

You need no words from me to state the grave seriousness of the crisis of the spread of the coronavirus around the world and throughout this country. We know the steps and the sacrifices we must take in order to play our part in slowing its spread, saving lives and enabling the NHS to continue its vital work. These things are our duty before God.

There are other vitally important aspects of this moment in our history that are less prominent in our media and conversations.

At this moment we stand before God. That is never to be forgotten. Together we turn to God in prayer, at this moment as never before.

Dear Parishioners,

I write to you with important information for the parish regarding the suspension of normal activities due to the Covid-19 coronavirus disease. We are following the advice and instructions from the Cardinal, the Diocese of Westminster and the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales (CBCEW). These are available to view at the Bishops’ Conference website www.cbcew.org.uk

If you are able to, please use our website www.ourladynewsouthgate.org.uk to follow news, updates and Masses. Please also see churchservices.tv/newsouthgate

From today the public celebration of Masses here at Our Lady of Lourdes will be suspended. Please note carefully that this does not mean there will be no Masses. The Eucharist is always the centre of our lives and of the saving work of Christ in his Church. The Bishops are very clear that the obligation to attend Sunday Mass is removed during this time. Father Andrew and I will continue to celebrate Mass every day for your intentions and for the spiritual good of all. You will be able to join in these Masses by watching online through the parish website. If you participate in the Mass by the internet or phone at home, you can unite yourself spiritually to the celebration and to all other members of the parish in prayer. We will say the 10am Mass every day (and on Saturdays also at 6.30pm) for the intentions that have already been allocated. The intentions for the 8am Masses and other Masses will either be transferred to later dates, or sent to be celebrated by other priests who do not have intentions. So here, from tomorrow (Thursday 19th March), Holy Mass will be celebrated and streamed live every day, 7 days a week, at 10am, plus also a Mass at 6.30pm on Saturday evening. All other usual times are now suspended. Let us all, please, continue to pray for each other. Confessions may be heard here by pre-arranged appointment only.