FEASTS OF THE WEEK





Sunday 19th May : Pentecost Sunday

The Church was made manifest to the world on the day of Pentecost by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. The gift of the Spirit ushers in a new era in the "dispensation of the mystery" - the age of the Church, during which Christ manifests, makes present and communicates his work of salvation through the liturgy of his Church "until he comes".

Pentecost Sunday marks the end of the Easter Season.


Monday 20th May : The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church

From the cross Jesus entrusted Mary to his disciples as their mother and entrusted his disciples to Mary as her children. Mary, present with the disciples at Pentecost, prayed with them as the Holy Spirit descended. Mary has never ceased to take motherly care of the pilgrim church on earth.
(This feast is celebrated on the Monday after Pentecost)


Wednesday 22nd May : St. Rita of Cascia (1386-1457)

She was married for eighteen years. Her husband, an ill-tempered and abusive man, was murdered. Later Rita entered the Augustinian convent in Cascia in the diocese of Spoleto in Italy, and spent forty years in prayer and charity, and working for peace in the region.


Friday 24th May : Day of Prayer for the Church in China

Today is a Day of Prayer for the Church in China, on the day of the memorial of Our Lady, Help of Christians, who is venerated with such devotion at the Marian Shrine of Sheshan in Shanghai.


Saturday 25th May : St. Gregory VII

Hildebrand of Tuscany was a Cluniac monk in Rome who, on becoming pope, worked for reform and died in exile at Salerno on 25th May in the year 1085.


Sunday 26th May : The Most Holy Trinity

At the Last Supper, Christ explained to the Apostles that he could not teach them everything because they were not, during his lifetime, sufficiently receptive. The Holy Spirit will be charged with continuing Christ's work for all the days of the future Church. It is the love of the Father that gives us his Son, while the Holy Spirit is ever leading us to know more of the truth.


Monday 27th May : St. Augustine of Canterbury

He was a monk in Rome when sent by Pope Gregory the Great to preach to the English. He set up his see at Canterbury and had much success in converting the south of England.


Wednesday 29th May : St. Paul VI (26/09/1897 - 06/08/1978)

Born Giovanni Battista Enrico Antonio Maria Montini at Concesio (Lombardy, Italy).He was a frail but intelligent child who received his early education from the Jesuits near his home in Brescia. Even after entering the seminary in 1916 he was allowed to live at home because of his health. He was ordained 29th May 1920.
During WWII he was responsible for organising the extensive relief work and care of political refugees. On the death of Pope John XXIII, Montini, then Archbishop of Milan, was elected to succeed him.
He continued the Second Vatican Council as begun by his predecessor. He was the first Pope to attempt to reform the Vatican's powerful and unruly Curia, he was the first Pope to hold weekly general audiences with the common man in St. Peter's Square and seek opinions of non-believers. Referred to as the "Pilgrim Pope" he was the first Pope to visit five continents. He was the first Pope to reject the papal trappings of luxury, setting aside the traditional jewel-encrusted tiara and donating its value to the poor. He had an unaccountably poor press and his public image suffered by comparison with his outgoing and jovial predecessor. Those who knew him best however, described him as a brilliant man, deeply spiritual, humble, reserved and gentle, a man of "infinite courtesy".
He died on 6th August 1978 having asked that his funeral be simple and no monument over his grave. He was Beatified on 19/10/2014; Canonised on 14/10/2018.
His memorial is on the anniversary of his priestly ordination.


If you want peace, work for justice.

In youth the days are short and the years are long. In old age the years are short and the days long.
St. Paul VI


Friday 31st May : The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today's liturgy recalls the "Blessed Virgin Mary carrying her Son within her" and visiting Elizabeth to offer charitable assistance and to proclaim the mercy of God the Saviour.


Saturday 1st June : St. Justin

He was born in the Holy Land and settled in Rome. He became a Christian and is remembered for his derence of Christian belief and practice. He was martyred c. the year 165.