Welcome to the autumn term, and a warm welcome back to all children, young people, teachers, governors and staff in our schools as we begin this new academic year. I also send lots of good wishes and prayers to young people who are beginning or returning to their courses at university and college, or other training. Let us pray to the Holy Spirit at this time of new beginnings for every blessing, strength and protection, hopeful of all the wonderful opportunities and experiences that lie ahead of us! Monday is the beginning of the altered schedule at church. This means next weekend will be the first weekend for the changed times for Sunday (please take note). Please also note that from next Saturday, Confessions will change from 2pm to 3pm. Today is the last day for registration for First Holy Communion. I have already extended this registration period by seven weeks, given the complicated circumstances. However, this is the final opportunity so please sign up today if you haven’t done so already. The numbers are pretty much full so there will be no further opportunity or extension. Have a wonderful week and a great term.

The First Communion list for the 21/22 course closes today. Further information will be in the newsletter nearer to the time of the start of the course in November.

The Committee meets on Tuesday 7th September at 7pm in the upstairs meeting room.

Sunday 12th September: the collection will resume at Mass after the Bidding Prayers.

Please note—the office is closed this Friday, 10th September.

Wednesday 8th September 10am —Funeral Mass for Raffaele Sordillo
Thursday 9th September 6.30pm—Memorial Mass for Laura Paynter
Saturday 18th September 12 noon—Memorial Mass for Libby Biberian

It was lovely to see so many people at the meeting last Thursday. Future gatherings will take place on the first Thursday of each month.

You should not come to church if you have any symptoms, or if you have been told to self-isolate. Please continue to use the QR code to sign in on your smartphone. You are encouraged to wear a face covering. The capacity of the church has increased to normal levels, but please be respectful of those who may want to keep a distance. Thank you.

Beginning on Monday (6th September), there will be an altered schedule for liturgical celebrations in church.

Monday—Friday    Masses 8 am & 10am (car park will not open till 9.15am)
        on Fridays there will be exposition after the 10am Mass

Saturdays    1pm Baptisms, 3pm Confessions, 4pm Vigil Mass, 6pm Vigil Mass

Sundays        Masses: 8.45am, 10am (Solemn), 11.15am (Family), 12.30pm

We are not quite fully back to normal yet, but almost there. If the pandemic has taught us anything it is that things are not set in stone. The physical Sign of Peace at Mass remains suspended for the time being, and unless further guidance is issued for our consideration, Holy Communion from the chalice will remain suspended indefinitely. Thank you to those who wrote in with reflections on Masses and other experiences. If we need to review in due course (for example, if we have too many Masses) that is always possible. However, for now we have retained six opportunities for Sunday Mass, albeit in a slightly different pattern which most people indicated was preferable. This should be more than ample. We are very much looking forward to resuming singing at Mass and seeing many parishioners back. Sunday 12th September is the first day for singing at 10am and 11.15am Masses. Readers and new readers should hear soon about the new rotas. Many thanks everyone for your generosity and help!

Sunday intentions already booked will be transferred to the new, equivalent time (e.g. 11am to 11.15am etc). Weekday Masses will be moved from 12 noon to 10am. With the return of the 8am Mass (Mon-Fri) we now have a lot more available slots. Please contact the office to book intentions for the 8am Mass.

If your child is due to start at secondary school next September, the schools will be holding Open Days/Evenings in the next couple of weeks.  Please keep an eye on their websites for details.