FOURTH SUNDAY OF LENT (A) – Laetare
APPEAL FOR PERSECUTED CHRISTIANS
There will be an appeal at all Sunday Masses by Aid to the Church in Need for persecuted Christians in the Middle East.
CLOCKS GO FORWARD THIS SUNDAY
Clocks go forward an hour at 1am this Sunday as the UK switches to British Summer Time.
ANNUAL QUARANT’ORE – FORTY HOURS’ ADORATION
Tuesday 28th March: 6.30pm Solemn Mass of Exposition (Latin). Procession of the Blessed Sacrament. Adoration until 12 midnight. Wednesday 29th March: 7.00am Blessed Sacrament exposed. 6.30pm Holy Hour and Benediction. Adoration until 12 midnight. Thursday 30th March: 7am Blessed Sacrament exposed. 7pm Mendelssohn’s Lauda Sion, followed by Solemn Benediction. See also here.
STATIONS OF THE CROSS: Every Friday in Lent at 6.30pm.
LECTURE SERIES ON CREATION IN NATURE, ART & FAITH
The series of public lectures, based on the theme of Creation, which is organised by Benedictus Trust in conjunction with the Order of Malta and the London Oratory, continues on Tuesday 28th March. Father John Hemer MHM, Formation Advisor and Lecturer at Allen Hall Seminary, will speak on "What Does the Bible Say about Creation?". 8pm (after the Solemn Mass of Exposition for the Forty Hours' Devotion) to 9.30pm (including time for discussion) in in St Wilfrid’s Hall at the Oratory. All lectures are free & everyone is welcome. See also here.
LENTEN ALMS – CARDINAL’S APPEAL
This year our Cardinal Archbishop has asked that the Lenten Alms collection be directed to the Cardinal’s Appeal fund. The funds raised will go to support parishes or groups in their work to further the mission of the Church: to serve the evangelisation of youth, to develop marriage and family life projects, and to provide service in society, especially to those on the margins. Envelopes are still available at the back of church – you can make a Lenten gift by placing the envelope in the designated box.
CATHOLIC ENQUIRY GROUP
The Catholic Enquiry Group has started again on Wednesday 22nd March. It will run until 5th July. This group is designed for those interested in becoming Catholic (whether baptised or not) and also for adult Catholics seeking to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation. Meetings are at 8pm on Wednesdays. For more details, enquire at the Oratory House or by email email@example.com.
ADVANCE NOTICE: ORATORY GARDEN PARTY
Saturday 24th June 2017, 12noon to 5pm. All welcome.
The Annual Garden Party is a much-enjoyed parish and local event, but the increasing cost of tent hire is making the profit margin smaller and smaller each year. We need to raise around £3,000 to help defray our section of the costs for this. Donations will be very gratefully received for this purpose, and should be sent to Father McHardy, clearly marked “Garden Party Tents” and payable to “London Oratory Charity.” Last year we were helped by one very generous donor, for which we are most grateful.
NEW RECORDING BY THE SCHOLA CANTORUM OF THE LONDON ORATORY SCHOOL
England has lots of sacred treasures: in literature, from early writers such as the Venerable Bede to Blessed John Henry Newman in more recent times; in art and architecture, our country is populated with beautiful Gothic churches resplendent with stained glass windows. But in the sixteenth century, England was especially renowned for the spiritual beauty of its choral music.
The Sacred Treasures of England, a recording of English sacred music performed by our school choir, the Schola Cantorum of the London Oratory School, brings that beauty to a wider audience, and we hope and pray it will lift hearts and minds to the Almighty in the way that great music can.
It is the first of a series of CDs with the choirs of the Oratory to be launched over the next few years by AimHigher Recordings on the Sony Classical label. It is now available from Amazon and iTunes. You can especially support the choir by buying their CD from the Oratory bookshop.
And if you want to see some spectacular footage of the Oratory church, visit this link to watch the launch video for this CD, which was filmed recently.
ORATORY YOUNG ADULTS GROUP
Night Shelter on Wednesday: Once again we are taking part in the night shelter at St Augustine’s, Queen’s Gate, SW7 5LP (near South Kensington tube station). We are needed on Wednesdays from about 7.30pm to help serve food and chat with the guests. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
Restart: On Saturday afternoons at St Augustine’s there is a drop-in centre organised by the charity Restart (http://restartlives.org/). These drop-ins run throughout the year. They are looking to start a two-tier mentoring initiative. This is what they told us: “We are initially looking for volunteers who are interested in becoming either a mentor or a befriender. Both will have very similar training and supervision, although mentoring will be a six-month commitment and the onus on meeting the mentee would be very much up to both parties. For the ‘befriending’ option, the commitment would look more like one or two months, with meetings with mentee restricted to Saturdays at the Drop-in. At this stage, we are interested in getting an idea of numbers, anyone that is keen on finding out more. We will be writing to everyone that registers an interest in the New Year. Please email directly (mentioning that you have come through the Oratory) at email@example.com.”
During the 10am, 11am and 12:30pm Masses, St Gregory’s Library is available for parents with small children who become restless. There are books and some toys. Entrance is through the Sacred Heart Chapel at the back of the church. Children must be supervised by their parents at all times. We need more help to maintain this service, especially during the 11am and 12:30pm Masses. If you can spare a few hours on a Sunday occasionally, please tell Farah, Giulia or David (call 07768 176 848).
SUNDAY MORNING COFFEE
We need more volunteers to maintain this much-appreciated weekly offer. If you can spare a few hours per month, please contact Fr Michael Lang on 020 7808 0900 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are struggling to come to terms with a recent – or not so recent – bereavement and would like to talk to someone, please get in touch with the Friends of the Oratory (email@example.com), where professional support is available.
WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU HAVE TO GO INTO HOSPITAL?
In light of strict data protection rules it is essential that on entering hospital you indicate that your details or those of your relative are to be passed to the Roman Catholic Chaplain. Also state that you or your relative would like the Roman Catholic Chaplain to visit you. Chaplains visit the wards during the week and provide an on-call service in case of emergency.
DONATE VIA YOUR MOBILE PHONE
SIMPLY TEXT “PARISH ORATO” TO THE NUMBER 70800
There is a new way of making a donation to the Oratory Parish via your mobile phone. You can now text £5 as an offering to help us with our many pastoral and charitable activities, and for the upkeep of our church. Simply type: “Parish”, then space, then “ORATO”, and send the text message to the number 70800. £5 will be added to your mobile phone bill, as a donation that will go directly to the Oratory Parish. This is authorised by the Diocese of Westminster. You will not receive unsolicited calls or spam texts. You are in complete control of when to donate. There is nothing to sign-up for or log into. The Oratory Parish receives 97 pence for every pound donated, which is good stewardship. The Diocese of Westminster is sponsoring this programme in all 215 parishes across the Diocese, so there is no cost to us. If you have any questions, contact the Oratory House, or the Diocese at 020 7798 9375.
GIFT AID – HELPING THE ORATORY
If you are a UK taxpayer, the Oratory can claim back from the Inland Revenue 25p of every £1 you give, at no cost or inconvenience to you. Setting up a Gift Aid arrangement helps the Oratory to increase its income, which is much needed for the upkeep of the church and for the many pastoral activities in the parish. For further information contact the Oratory House.
PRIEST REFERENCE FOR SCHOOL APPLICATIONS
Parents who wish one of the Oratory Fathers to give their child a school reference must register with the “Mass Attendance” scheme. Registration forms are available from the Oratory House.
INFORMATION FOR MARRIAGE
If you would like to be married at the Oratory, we will need at least 6 months notice. For the initial enquiry please come to the Oratory House in person and ask to speak to the priest on duty (see Hours of Duty below). All subsequent meeting, bookings and arrangements will be done through him, so please make a note of his name! No wedding books will be taken over the telephone or by email.
If you do not normally worship at the Oratory, please state the name of the church where you usually attend Mass and give the reasons you wish to marry here (for instance, personal connection to the Oratory or one of our schools). Please remember that it is important to approach the church first before making your plans for a reception venue. We do not have weddings on a Sunday.
There are various arrangements and legalities, both civil and ecclesiastical which need to be attended to. You will also need to undergo a course of preparatory instruction about the sacrament of marriage. Please speak to the priest for more details. See also here.
Hours of Duty:
Monday-Friday: 9.30am-12.00pm; 3.00pm-5.30pm; 8.00pm-9.00pm.
Saturday: 9.30am-12pm; 3.00pm-5.30pm.
INFORMATION FOR BAPTISM
According to canon law, “Parents are obliged to see that their infants are baptised within the first few weeks. As soon as possible after the birth, indeed even before it, they are to approach the parish priest to ask for the sacrament for their child, and to be themselves duly prepared for it” (CIC can. 867 §1).
Those wishing to have their child baptised should contact the Oratory House and ask to speak to the priest on duty. All subsequent meeting, bookings and arrangements will be done through him. It will be necessary to meet with the priest for a class on the sacrament of baptism.
Normally baptisms take place in the parish where a family is resident. If you do not live within the territorial boundaries of the Oratory parish but have a good reason for wanting to have your child baptised here then please explain that to the priest on duty. In such cases your own parish priest will need to give permission for the baptism to take place at the Oratory.
The choice of godparents (sponsors), who are to help the baptised to live a good Christian life and faithfully to fulfil the duties inherent in baptism, is an important one. One godparent, male or female, is sufficient; but there may be no more than two godparents, one of each sex. A godparent must be a Catholic of not less than sixteen years of age, who has been confirmed and who lives a life of faith that befits the role to be undertaken. A baptised person who belongs to a non-Catholic ecclesial community may be admitted in company with a Catholic sponsor as a Christian witness. See also here.
Disclaimer: The Oratory cannot guarantee the accuracy or endorse any of the information provided.
A 17-year old French Catholic boy from Versailles, is looking for a host family willing to welcome him for two or three weeks in London this coming August. He speaks fairly good English, but would like to improve his language skills. His family would be glad to organise a French exchange for a boy or girl of his age. To discuss the practical details (financial etc.), please contact Mr & Mrs Vonderscher (firstname.lastname@example.org), or Marcus Williams (email@example.com).
Large single room to let in Barons Court, all bills included. Very cozy garden flat near tube stations & high street. Contact Bo on 07342 693 844 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
CONCERT AT WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL
Westminster Cathedral Choir and Orchestra will have a Lenten Concert on Wednesday 29th March at 7.30pm. The concert will include the Allegri’s Miserere, Vaughan Williams’s Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis and James MacMillan’s Meditation on the Seven Last Words from the Cross. Tickets are available from the Cathedral Gift Shop, or here.
A RETREAT WITH A DIFFERENCE
A Foyer de Charité Retreat will be held at the new Retreat Centre in Walsingham, from Sunday 30th April (6pm) to Saturday 6th May (2pm). The theme is God’s Plan for the Fullness of Time, and the preacher will be Mgr. Keith Barltrop, with help from Foyer members and past retreatants. Foyer retreats are held mainly in silence, with three talks a day, and offer a holistic way of deepening our faith in the Church’s teaching and our life in Christ. The Foyers are communities of consecrated lay people living with a priest in order to help others grow closer to Christ and live the Catholic faith more fully. For further information or to book a place, contact Mgr. Barltrop: email@example.com; 07879 953953; St. Mary of the Angels, Moorhouse Road, Bayswater, London W2 5DJ.
FROM THE DIOCESE
Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes: Helpers are needed for the annual pilgrimage to Lourdes from Sunday 24th July to Saturday 30th July 2017. If you are between 16 and 18, you can serve as a “Red Cap”, helping people in wheelchairs and taking part in the processions and many other tasks. Contact Katrina Lavery at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to learn more. If you are over 18, your help would be very much appreciated as a helper in the Accueil St Frai, where sick pilgrims in most need of support and medical care stay. The role of a St Frai helper is to support the nurses and provide the sort of care for which you don’t need a medical qualification. If you’re interested in helping in the St Frai, email chief helper Nick Leonard and team at email@example.com.
Matrimony: A calling to forgive! Retrouvaille offers a welcoming and loving space to couples who have been living with the misery of a failing marriage. Retrouvaille offers hope: hope that it is not too late, hope of a different and better marriage. Retrouvaille helps couples to show each other mercy through the opportunities it provides to listen, to forgive, to be reconciled and to move into their futures believing that God loves them and with His help and their effort, their marriages can be healed and restored. Retrouvaille provides help for marriage problems, difficulties and crises. See www.retrouvaille.org.uk. Phone or text 07887 296 983 or 07973 380 443.
For diocesan job vacancies visit the website http://rcdow.org.uk/diocese/jobs/ where you can view all current vacancies. New jobs are regularly added to the site as they arise.