A message from Fr John

Posted on: 16/07/2020

Dear Friends

Good morning - I think the sun must be self-isolating - again

Today is one of the patronal feasts of the diocese - Our Lady of Mt Carmel.

The Sacred Scriptures speak of the beauty of Mount Carmel, where the prophet Elijah defended the faith of the people of Israel in the living God. In 1156 a group of hermits settled there and afterwards set up the Carmelite Order to lead a contemplative life under the patronage of the Mother of God.

I know many of our parishioners have their roots in the old Mt Carmel Parish on Oldfield Road (and Fr Gudgeon was curate there). The mission was founded in 1875 on Sussex Street as a chapel of ease to the Cathedral. It became independent in 1877 and the church on Oldfield Road was opened in 1880. However, the parish was served from St Joseph’s Ordsall from 1972. The final Mass was celebrated in April 1978 and the church was later demolished due to storm damage.

Today we might think about our Diocese and its great history of faith. We might also think about how it has adapted to changing circumstances one the past 170 years since its inception. We might also think about how we might need to be just as courageous in adapting and making difficult choices partly in response to the pandemic but also our changing pastoral needs. Our forebears in the faith faced different kinds of challenges but did so full of faith and trust.

We need the same courage as those early hermits and the poor folk of Salford. We know that when we emerge from these times life will be different - and our parish cannot be the same. We will need to think about new ways that we can be both 'contemplative and active’ serving the people of God and caring for God’s creation.

Let’s keep Bishop John in our prayer as he guides us through these times and remember his little prayer:
Stay with us, Lord, on our journey

Please pray for Audrey Judge and Mary Cherriman whose funerals we celebrate today.

St Joseph, pray for us

Every blessing

Fr John

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