Many thanks to those who attended and helped at the Family Mass and BBQ on Sunday Evening.
Pope Francis has inaugurated the Year of Mercy on 8 December 2015. This offers the Church an opportunity to revisit the boundless mercy of the Heavenly Father who extends mercy to all those with open hearts. This mercy of the Heavenly Father has been made visible in the coming of Christ in human flesh. May this year be a time of reflection and renewal of heart as we ponder Jesus Christ, the face of the Father’s mercy.
Over 100 parishioners joined in the parish lunch on 22 November 2015 for the Feast of Christ the King. The occasion was an opportunity for the community to gather and enjoy each other's company. We were treated to a singalong and poetry. Some even stayed on for some hands of Euchre. Many thanks to those who joined in and to the many volunteers who contributed generously of their time and talent this year.
St Carthage's had the pleasure of welcoming talented singing group Prima Luce back to Lismore on Tuesday evening 20 October 2015. They treated listeners to pieces from their new CD Morning Star.
Listeners were impressed by their talent and encouraged to see young people appreciating the heritage of Sacred Music.
For a sample of Prima Luce's work please click here.
All Souls’ Day offers a marvellous opportunity to assist the poor souls in Purgatory. A plenary indulgence applied to the poor souls in purgatory is granted on this day to the faithful who visit a church or oratory and recite an Our Father and the Creed. St Mary’s Chapel will be open from 8am Mass until 6pm on All Souls’ for parishioners who wish to gain this indulgence.
Furthermore, a plenary indulgence applied to the poor souls in purgatory is granted to the faithful who on every day from the 1st to 8th of November visit a cemetery and pray for the faithful departed.
Scroll below for a concise clip explaining indulgences.
Briefly, an indulgence is a remission of the temporal penalty for sin whose guilt has already been forgiven. Indulgences have a foundation in Sacred Scripture. In Second Maccabees the soldier Judah takes up a collection: “He also took up a collection, man by man, to the amount of two thousand drachmas of silver, and sent it to Jerusalem to provide for a sin offering…he made atonement for the dead, that they might be delivered from their sin” (2 Macc 12:43, 45).
The conditions for a plenary indulgence are as follows (excerpt from Vatican document The Gift of the Indulgence):
3. To gain indulgences, whether plenary or partial, it is necessary that the faithful be in the state of grace at least at the time the indulgenced work is completed.
4. A plenary indulgence can be gained only once a day. In order to obtain it, the faithful must, in addition to being in the state of grace:
— have the interior disposition of complete detachment from sin, even venial sin;
— have sacramentally confessed their sins;
— receive the Holy Eucharist (it is certainly better to receive it while participating in Holy Mass, but for the indulgence only Holy Communion is required);
— pray for the intentions of the Supreme Pontiff.
5. It is appropriate, but not necessary, that the sacramental Confession and especially Holy Communion and the prayer for the Pope's intentions take place on the same day that the indulgenced work is performed; but it is sufficient that these sacred rites and prayers be carried out within several days (about 20) before or after the indulgenced act. Prayer for the Pope's intentions is left to the choice of the faithful, but an "Our Father" and a "Hail Mary" are suggested. One sacramental Confession suffices for several plenary indulgences, but a separate Holy Communion and a separate prayer for the Holy Father's intentions are required for each plenary indulgence.
We can be thankful that most Australians desire children to flourish and thrive. New research regularly confirms that the ideal environment in which children grow and develop is with their biological father and mother. The Australian Marriage Forum has produced a though-provoking clip on the topic:
This week St Carthage's had the pleasure of receiving an enthusiastic group of young people on a journey. The Crossroads Walkers are walking from Brisbane to Melbourne to raise awareness of the dignity of human life from conception until natural death. It was a pleasure to meet these delightful young people who were respectfully and joyfully witnessing to others. The members are updating their facebook page regularly. Feel free to have a look at: https://www.facebook.com/CrossroadsAustralia
"The family that prays together stays together". The saying has not lost its value and perhaps has become more important in contemporary times. Praying together as a family or group produces some good effects. Praying together promotes unity and cohesion. Members find it easier to forgive each other. To start praying together it may be helpful to start small. Choose a specific time and place and put aside competing priorities. One could choose to pray together for 10 minutes once per week as a start. Prayer time before the evening meal or before bedtime can work well. One could run a trial for say 6 weeks and observe the positive fruits in the life of the family. In this clip, Saint Mother Teresa of Culcutta speaks eloquently about the value of family prayer:
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