After a week of various Family mass group ceremonies beginning with Palm Sunday through Holy Thursday and Good Friday, our Easter celebration came to an end with a lovely vibrant Easter Sunday Mass celebrating Christ’s resurrection. The children as always were at their best as they led us in prayer through words actions and song. They all began by processing into church waving their ribbons with enthusiasm, while singing with the choir led by Elizabeth ‘This is the Day.’ Fr Joe welcomed everyone to our celebration and Ellen and Miriam introduced our Mass for us. Orla, Jamie and Eoghan acted out a wonderful, simple and fruitful dramatisation of the bible story of what happened on Easter morning. This helped us to focus and listen to the Word of God and reminded us as Pope St. John Paul II proclaimed, “We are an Easter people, and alleluia is our song!” During our prayers of the faithful we prayed for those in need and that Jesus would be our friend. Our Mass concluded with Fr Joe getting a lovely Easter Egg as we all know he loves chocolate! and a blessing.
I came across this painting by the French Artist James (Jacques) Tissot some years ago and was struck by its scope and power. It gives us a unique opportunity to put ourselves into Christ’s place and consider his thoughts and feelings as he gazed on his friends and enemies who were witnessing or participating in his death.
On the faces of those at the foot of the cross Jesus sees every passion known to humanity. Some are scornful, almost leering, others are curious, disgusted , relieved and some are sorrowful, resigned and distraught.
Some Roman soldiers are looking on, including a centurion who is clad in red. He has a downcast expression on his face which reminds us of the passage in Luke’s gospel which says ‘Now when the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, certainly this was a righteous man.’ (Lk 23:47). The men on horseback are Jewish scribes. They seem satisfied with the situation – after all, they were the ones who had pressed Pilate into having their rival crucified.
In the background, Tissot has painted a tomb where the body is to be deposited the same night. The pots in the foreground may contain edik (vinegar) that some joker offered Christ for water.
The women and the Beloved Disciple are at the foot of the Cross: distraught, resigned, sorrowful. Among the women is his beloved Mother, Mary. She is gazing upwards, clutching her breast. John is the only one who records Mary’s presence at the cross in his gospel. It is here at the foot of the cross that Jesus says to his mother ‘Woman, here is your son.’ (Jn 19:27) and to his disciple, ‘Here is your mother’ (Jn19:28). Mary at that moment becomes the mother of the disciples and so becomes a model of belief and discipleship for us all.
Finally at the foot of the cross Mary Magdalene is placed clinging onto the cross. She is placed in the immediate foreground with her long red tresses swirling down her back, grasping at Jesus’ feet, which are just visible at the bottom centre of the painting. The effect created by the artist by positioning Mary Magdalene is that she is raising the viewer up to heaven as she goes through her devotion to Jesus at his death. She represents the penitent and grateful, dedicated believer at the cross. She is the loyal and faithful disciple.
In this painting all eyes are fixed on Jesus, as I explore this painting, I wonder is the artist asking the viewer – who would you be in the crowd?
On Sunday we celebrated Palm Sunday. We welcomed the children and their parents who will make their First Communion in May. They joined with the Family Mass group in the blessing of the palms by Fr Harry. Everyone processed into the Church to celebrate Mass waving their palms with enthusiasm, while singing along with the choir ‘Sing Hosanna.’ Once again the choir were in fine voice and the children and adults were at their best as they led us in prayer. In our prayers we referred to our good deeds for Lent and prayed that we will continue to try to be better people, that we will love and be kind to each other and know that Jesus will always be our special Friend.
PRAY FOR HOLY WEEK
Dear God. We are remembering some very important things in the life of Jesus this week. Help us to remember when the children and all the people praised Jesus with palm branches and shouts of “Hosanna.” Help us to remember how he asked us to remember him in the Bread and the Wine. Help us to remember how he washed his disciple’s feet as an example to us of being a servant. Help us also to remember how he died for us on the cross – how he gave his live so that we might have life. In Jesus’ name. Amen
As our Lenten journey continues, we took time on Sunday to listen to the word of God. We heard that there is no power stronger than the love of Jesus. He was lifted up on the cross so that everyone would be drawn to him — and everyone includes you and me. Even when we fail to be loving and kind, Jesus still loves us.
Father, we thank you that Jesus was willing to die on the cross
so that we could be saved.
During this week we will remember to love Jesus in return by being kind and loving to others.’
by helping at home , by being nice to everyone when playing and giving to Trocaire.
As we continue our Lenten journey, we took time to-day to think about how great God’s love is for us. We were reminded in our Gospel story today that because God loves us so much he sent his son Jesus to be a light for us. Jesus shows us how to live and how to love. During this week we will remember to love God in return by being kind and loving to others.
Jesus, you are a light to the world.
You want us to stay close to you and follow your way.
Help us during our Lenten Journey to be loving and kind.
During the word of God today we listened to the story of Jesus talkijng to the Samartian Woman at the Well. God loves all people no matter where they come from. And God asks us to be like Jesus to care for and respect all people. So this week will show respect by
always saying please and thank you.
Keeping my room tidy
God made the world and I will be thankful to him.
God our Father as we continue our journey through Lent, may our hearts be open to your love and care for us. Help us to grow in your love and to do all that we can to help build a better world by showing respect for ourselves and everything around us. Amen
Mark 9: 2- 10 ‘THIS IS MY BELOVED SON. LISTEN TO HIM.’
This week in our gospel story we heard God the Father asking us to ‘Listen to his son, Jesus. We don’t always find it easy to listen. There are many distractions in our everyday lives, like television, computer games and toys. So our thought or task for this week is to try to ‘Listen’ more. We promise
to listen to our Mams and Dads
to say thanks for all that we have,
to talk to God every day, knowing that he will listen to me.
Today the first Sunday of Lent, we listened to the gospel story of how Jesus spent forty days in the desert alone and how he prayed to God the Father to help him.
We also took the time to reflect on how we can, as the Family of God, spend our Lent this year. Ellen clearly and simply explained that this Lent as part of the Family mass’s Lenten journey, that each Sunday of Lent after the 10.3a.m. the children will be invited to take a thought for the week home with them. These thoughts will reflect a variety of themes for the children to explore during Lent, including: love, forgiveness, respect, thanksgiving and prayer. Today they also received a laminated sheet for them to place each thought on. On Holy Thursday, the children will be asked to bring back their completed sheet with all their Lenten efforts recorded.
This week we have been asked to remember to say sorry if we hurt someone or maybe to forgive someone who hurts us and to remember to say sorry to God. Like Jesus in today’s Gospel story we pray to God our Father and ask him to help us to do our best this week and remember to say ‘sorry’ and to ‘forgive’.
Click on the these links for more Lenten activities