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These are worrying times for all of us as we are compelled to retreat to the sanctuary of our homes in order to combat the spread of the Covid19 virus and thereby save lives.  It is not easy, even in these early days, but it is something we should and must embrace not simply as an act of civic duty but as an act of faith.  There is no greater blessing than the gift of life and health and God calls on us to do everything we can to protect and safeguard the gift of life, our own life and the life of others.

In the face of an overwhelming sense of dread and worry we can feel easily powerless and vulnerable.  And yet, now more than ever, we need to hold on to a sense of hope. We need to trust in our public health professionals and comply with all the advice they give us.  Yet, even whist staying apart, we need to pull together as a community by being mindful of others who need our help and support.  Just because we cannot meet them does not mean we cannot remain connected.  A simple phone call to a neighbour has never been more needed and may never be more important than it is right now.

We also invite people to unite in and through the power of prayer.  Prayer takes us beyond ourselves and connects to others as well as to our God.  Last week, the day before the schools closed, a child in one of our schools offered me a wonderful image of prayer.  She said that praying for someone is like sending them a virtual hug that lets them know they are loved. What a lovely way of thinking of the power of prayer!  We could all do with a good ‘virtual hug’ right now so let us pray for one another and for all those we love.  Let us pray for those who have already contracted the virus and all those who are vulnerable or worried. Let us pray for all those working in our health services and those working to keep essential services going so that we have what that need.

In accordance with health guidelines the celebration of all public Masses has been suspended in our Churches.  Fr Con and I will continue to celebrate Mass privately each day and will offer it for all of you as well as for all those who are affected or worried, near or far. Our Churches remain open for anyone who wishes to come and say a prayer or light a candle.  We ask those visiting our Churches to observe the social distancing guidelines that have been issued.

Masses are being live-streamed each morning on www.churchservices.tv  for anyone who is so interested.

Please mind yourselves and mind one another.  Stay safe. If there is anything that Con or I can do for you please feel free to give us a call.  

Beannacht Dé orainn go léir.

Fr Seán

 

I came across the prayer reflection this morning and found that it spoke powerfully to me. I offer it here in the hope that it can do likewise for you.


The whole world over

We struggle the whole world over

faced with a threat that we can neither see nor understand..

We struggle the whole world over

to hold on to hope in the face of uncertainty and anxious fears.

We struggle the whole world over

to cope with restrictions, confinement and isolation.

We ask you Lord to help us to hold each other in thought and prayer

the whole world over -

and to guide us through this present crisis

so that the hope of peoples the whole world over

may be rekindled and together we may prevail.

Make our faith stronger than our fears.

We make our prayer through Christ our Lord. Amen