Dear Brothers and Sisters
The story of how David was plucked from the fields and anointed King over Israel, is well known. He was the youngest of Jesse’s sons and his place therefore was to tend the sheep. A lowly, but important task in that kind of society. That David, after many trials and tribulations, was to go on to become the King par excellence, and a reference against which all future and past kings would be judged is remarkable. His reign saw Israel, or rather the tribe of Judah, become settled, prosperous and, relatively speaking, at peace.
It is hardly surprising therefore that through all the difficult things that the nation was to go through in the next centuries – right up to, and beyond, Jesus Christ – that the Jews would look for, and hope for, a king who might rule more after the model of David. Ezekiel the prophet picks this up in the first reading today. No longer will the nation be left in the hands of lazy, quarrelling, unjust and faithless rulers and priests – but God himself will be the Shepherd King. Being just and holy his judgement will be right and true. Those who have done wrong can expect dire punishment and those who have suffered in the cause of right will be rewarded. Those who have been damaged by the ills of society will be healed, refreshed and restored.
The metaphor of King as shepherd is clearly a Jewish one and thus the Messiah would be one who vanquishes the foes of Israel and yet one who rules with tenderness and compassion. Those who were once bowed down under oppression will be able to hold their heads up high.
What went against expectations, and continues to confound the Jews, is that the way in which the King vanquishes his foes is not with a mighty army that meets on a bloody battlefield but a battle against the forces of darkness that is met in his own body on the cross. Meeting hatred and violence with love, compassion, and non-violence Jesus overcomes the evil. By rising to new life, he ushers in the new kingdom of justice peace, love and compassion.
The important thing for us as Jesus’ followers is that He asks something new of us. He asks us to see him in the faces of those around us – everyone – but most particularly in the faces of the poor, the sick, the imprisoned, the hungry. If we do that we are counted righteous. If we refuse to do that we are cast off. But it is we who have cast ourselves off from Him – by failing to recognise him in the “littlest of these my brothers and sisters.
With my love and prayers. Fr David
New to the Parish or just keen to meet everyone You will be made welcome at the evening reception following the 6pm Mass in Cranleigh on January 20th. If you have recently become involved in Cranleigh or Bramley, for whatever reason, or know of someone who would like to be included, please sign up on the Parish Events page of the website.
Corin Golding will be selling baked goods after Mass in Bramley on the 26th November to raise funds for his school, St Edmund’s Catholic Primary in Godalming. Please support Corin’s efforts.
Date Change for Care Group meeting is re-scheduled for 1st December at 11am at Cranleigh Parish Meeting Room.
Mums and Dads – a date for your Diary – Join other Parents, Staff and Governors to celebrate the Feast of St Cuthbert Mayne on November 29th.
We will be celebrating whole school mass at 1.45 and then the blessing and official opening of our new school entrance lobby. From 3.15-4.00pm we will have Open Classrooms.
Bishop Richard will be celebrating mass with Fr. David and then opening the lobby and visiting classrooms after school during the Open Classrooms. We will then have informal refreshments for staff, governors and the Bishop from 4-4.45pm.
The Monday Advent Group will start as usual at 10am on Monday November 27th at 6 Linersh Drive, Bramley.
All are welcome. I would be grateful if you can let me know if you are coming on 01483 894048. Maureen Loveder.
The Parish are going to be selling Tombola Tickets after the next few weeks Masses in order to raise funds for the Parish Hall which is still an ongoing concern. The prizes include nice bath sets, books, booze, candles, chocolates, and odds are good to win something. Please support this venture.
From Darkness to Light
A Service of Readings and Music for Advent
At St Thomas More Church, Bramley
Sunday 3rd December 2017 – 6.30pm
Followed by mulled wine and mince pies in the Parish Room. All are welcome
The St Cuthbert Mayne Christmas Fair will take place following the Youth Mass on Sunday 26th November. Please join the festivities after Mass and enjoy lots of children’s activities, good food, cakes and drinks. There are raffle prizes of £300, £200 & £100 plus lots more to be won. Parking will be restricted on the day and all are very welcome at the Fair.
The Parish Reconciliation Service will take place on Sunday 17th December in Cranleigh from 1pm. Our First Holy Communion children (30+ of them!) will be receiving their First Reconciliation. All members of the parish are encouraged to attend. You might like to come to the service even if you intend to make your confession the following weekend and use the penitential service as a helpful and joyful examination of conscience to help prepare yourself.
“By kind permission of Fr David there will be a Christmas collection after mass on Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd December for the Number Five Homeless shelter. Number Five Project is a shelter for the homeless in 3 to 5 York Road, Guildford. The shelter has accommodation for 14 males and 2 females and provides bed, breakfast and an evening meal. Although it only provides temporary accommodation, usually up to two weeks, the centre will usually be full at Christmas time, and so for a number of years now our parish has had a collection to help them through Christmas.
The proceeds of the collection have been used to give each resident a voucher for the cinema and also a small voucher to spend in The Friary Centre. The residents really appreciate the fact that someone is thinking about them and can be very moved by it.
If there are sufficient funds the residents are provided with a take-away meal of their choice on New Year’s Eve.
As Number Five does not have any independent resources any remaining funds from the collection are used to provide for emergencies such as a taxi to the A and E out of normal hours, or help with fares to attend a job interview or to see an ill relative, etc. It is also used for birthday cards and sometimes a small birthday present for a resident. This a very valued resource at the shelter and would not be available without your help.
You can be assured that any money you give will be very much appreciated both by the staff and the residents and will be put to very good use.” From Pat Scully
“LO HE COMES” – An opportunity to take an hour out in each week of Advent to prepare for Christmas with Words and Music from different traditions presented by the Rector. We are invited to join our friends at St Nicolas on Wednesday evenings in the Parish Church. 6th Dec – “The King is Coming”, 13th Dec – “The Light is Coming”, 20th Dec – “The Child is Coming”. Please see the poster in the porch.
Bishop Richard invites families to join him on a pilgrimage to Dublin for the World Meeting of families 22nd – 26th August 2018. This event includes; a three day congress exploring themes from Amoris Laetitia. Wonderful international speakers will lead sessions for adults and there are age appropriate activities for children and young people. This is followed by a concert style “Festival of Families” on the Saturday and the event concludes with Sunday Mass concelebrated by Pope Francis.
For further details please see flyers in the porch or contact firstname.lastname@example.org