Letter from The Vicar and Notices

My dearest brothers and sisters,
Be on guard
We enter the season of Advent. And again we have such apocalyptic imagery.
Jesus speaks: There will be signs in the sun, the moon, and the stars, and on the earth distress among nations confused by the roaring of the sea and the waves. Every year, the first Sunday of Advent, we visit this idea, And every first Sunday of Advent when this theme is introduced, there are events happening in the world that could feel like the end times. I don’t say that to dismiss our fears about what is occurring, but rather to suggest that there have always been events that have been interpreted in such a way.
Be on guard so that your hearts are not weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of this life, and that day does not catch you unexpectedly, like a trap. So the issue is about being prepared for when these things do occur. Are we ready? It pays to think. If the day was to come today, in what state is your being? Will you be filled with anger at someone? Will your mind be worried about what is yet to be achieved, or worried about what was allowed to pass? Will you be found in a state that is unable to comprehend that you are face to face with Jesus Christ? Is that the
drunkenness Jesus speaks of? In what state is our Church? Is it in a state where it is ready? To let Jesus in to strengthen our hearts so they remain open and softened, not closed and hardened. To help us to be holy and blameless, so when Jesus does return, we will be ready to greet him.
To be prepared is to remember the life to which we have been called. A life of loving one another, a life of forgiving, a life of prayer and communion. So when Jesus speaks of what is to come, he doesn’t do so in such a way as to frighten us, or get us panicky. It is more to say this is the way we are to be. It isn’t something you can put off until next year when the finances are easier, or when you get that book, or when so and so isn’t around as much. It is something that is in the present right now. Jesus calls us to be who we are at the fullest now. Be on guard so ……that day does not catch you unexpectedly, like a trap.
Peace be with you all.
Father Chris

Parish Notices

  • Parish financial update for October:Income $13,546 Expenditure $21,473 Deficit $7,927 For donations deposit into account number 03 0855 0263594 000 Account Name St Michael’s Churchwardens
  • Church Carpet: many of you will by now have seen the splendid new carpet, designed especially for S. Michael’s. This was made possible by a generous bequest from a parishioner who served S. Michael and All Angels faithfully for many years—we are most grateful.
  • Parish Roll: if you are new and would like to have your name added to the roll, see Gloria or fill in the form available at the back of the church. All parishioners are asked to advise Gloria or Bridie of any changes to address or contact details.
  • Vicarage Building Fund Christmas Raffle prepared by the Women’s Fellowship. Important announcement—there will now be three prizes. Tickets on sale in the hall after Mass. Drawn 16 December. Tickets $2 each or 3 for $5.
  • The final meeting of the year for the Needlework Group is a DVD evening and Christmas supper at Judith McKaskell’s home on Tuesday from 7:00 pm. Please contact Ros (322 6078) for further details. All welcome.
  • Meditation Group meets in the Lady Chapel, Wednesdays 12 noon. Details Margaret Maclagan (359 9215) or Pat Evans (358 0127).
  • Angelology Group: Thursdays 10:30 am in the Lady Chapel.
  • Oberammergau 2020 information evening: All Souls’ Church, Merivale. Wednesday, 7:00 pm. Enquiries to Adrienne (027 5135119).
  • A Handful of Change—Journeying through Advent: Craufurd Murray.Copies available from Fr Craufurd, the parish office or Ecclesia Books for $10.
  • Knitting wool: no more required until next year. Terry Elliott wishes to thank all who have donated this year.
  • Electronic Devices wanted for recycling: old mobile phones, tablets etc.
  • Book Swap: in the parish lounge. Koha to parish.
  • Inasmuch basket: please continue to support the City Mission every week with your gifts of groceries and other household items.