19th March 2020

Our Lady Help of Christians & St Lawrence, 39-41 West Street, Olney, Bucks, MK46 5HH

19th March 2020

Solemnity of St Joseph

Parish Priest – Father David B Barrett – email – olneyparishpriest@icloud.com

Parish Deacon – Rev Peter Griffin – Tel 07850499414 – email – pfgriffin@hotmail.co.uk

Parish Administrator – Denise Wallinger  Tel 01234 711212
email:  ourladysolney@btconnect.com

SVP Contact – Tel 07925 125206

Diocesan Website: www.northamptondiocese.org

The Catholic Bishops of England and Wales have decided that, in response to the Coronavirus, public Masses, services and gatherings will be suspended in all churches from this Friday evening. This also applies to our church here in Olney. It also applies to all meetings scheduled to take place here. The church will remain open every day as a place for individual prayer and the Blessed Sacrament will remain in the tabernacle: the living heart of our parish, a refuge for peace and calm.

Cardinal Nichols has said: “The celebration of Mass, Sunday by Sunday and day by day, will take place without a public congregation. 

“Knowing that the Mass is being celebrated; joining in spiritually in that celebration; watching the live-streaming of the Mass; following its prayers at home; making an act of spiritual communion: this is how we share in the Sacrifice of Christ in these days.  These are the ways in which we will sanctify Sunday, and indeed every day.

“We want everyone to understand that in these emergency circumstances, and for as long as they last, the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and Holy Days is removed.”

Therefore, I will remain in our parish and I will offer the Mass every day here, even though it will be without a congregation. Monday to Saturday, Mass will be at 10.00am. On Saturday evening I will celebrate Mass at 6.30pm for Sunday; and on Sunday morning at 10.30am. However, I will have to celebrate it on my own. Sadly, access to parishioners is not permitted. Hopefully, in the near future, the facility for livestreaming Mass from our church via YouTube will be available through our new parish website.

I will always be available for confessions.

For now, Masses will be livestreamed from Northampton Cathedral every Sunday and every day from the Walsingham National Shrine. For more information, please do consult the Diocesan Website.

OUR NEW PARISH WEBSITE can be found at www.ourladysolney.co.uk

SUPPORTING EACH OTHER – Please continue to keep an eye out for any of our more vulnerable or isolated parishioners – and neighbours too. Please do contact me or Denise or a member of the SVP if you feel they could do with some practical support.

FOODBANK – Please continue to support the foodbank either by dropping off at church – boxes will remain in the porch or use the donation points at supermarkets.

As at March 2020, we are anticipating the following products to be in short supply in our warehouse over the next few months:

  • Long Life Juice
  • Long Life Milk
  • Tinned Rice Pudding / Custard
  • Tinned Meat
  • Tinned Vegetables
  • Tinned Tomatoes
  • Pasta Sauce
  • Spreads

PARISH SUPPORT – If you are able to continue to support the church financially during the period of closure please drop your collection through the presbytery door or could you consider setting up a standing order, Please contact Denise via ourladysolney@btconnect.com for bank details.

SPIRITUAL COMMUNION – Even if you are not attending Mass, you can make a Spiritual Communion every day. It is an expressed heartfelt desire to receive Our Lord even when we are unable. In making the prayer, we receive the Lord spiritually. Here is one prayer to make a Spiritual Communion:

My Jesus, I believe that You are truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as being already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

St Alphonsus Liguori

OUR NEW BISHOP Our new Bishop, the Right Reverend David Oakley was ordained today as the 13th Bishop of Northampton – our Bishop now. Let us keep him in our prayers and the whole of our Diocese.

PRAY – Let us pray for each other and look after each other as much as is possible. Pray the Rosary especially, the Divine Mercy at 3.00pm every day and the Prayer to St Michael. Make frequent Spiritual Communions. These prayers will be available here in church by tomorrow.

Please do not hesitate to contact me or the Parish Administrator if you need further help.

God bless you all,

Fr David B Barrett