Blessed Lord, who caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: help us so to hear them, to read, mark, learn and inwardly digest them that, through patience and the comfort of your holy word, we may embrace and ever hold fast the hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.
Readings for Mass
Nehemiah:1-4; 8-12. After their return from exile the people gather to hear the Hebrew Scriptures read to them by the priest Ezra: the word of God brings consolation and joy to the people.
Colossians 3:12-17. Being a Christian means seeking to become like Christ, being ‘clothed’ with his character and his way of love and forgiveness and letting his word take root and dwell within us, shaping our thoughts and deeds.
Gospel. St Matthew 24:30-35. Christ is the Living and Eternal Word of the Father, all things will come to their fulfilment and completion in Him.
Our celebration of the Mass takes place at two tables: the table of the word and the table of the sacrament.
At the table of the sacrament bread is broken and wine outpoured and we come into the Presence of the Risen Lord who shares his life with us.
At the table of the word, the scriptures are read and the Gospel is proclaimed. The word of God is ‘broken open’ and through the written word of scripture we come into the presence of Christ the Living Word of the Father.
Lord you have given me your sacred Body to nourish my body and soul and your Word to light the way for my feet. Without these two, I could not live the good life, for the Word of God is the light of my soul and your Sacrament is the bread that gives me life. These are the two tables that furnish the two sides of the Church’s treasure house. (Thomas a Kempis: the Imitation of Christ
On Bible Sunday we make particular thanksgiving for the table of the word, for the gift of the Holy Scriptures and for Christ the Living and Eternal Word of God.
In today’s epistle from the letter to the Colossians St Paul says:
Let the word of Christ dwell in your richly (Colossians 3:16)
When we hear and listen expectantly to the scriptures read at Mass and when we reflect and meditate on the Bible, we begin to seek to allow the word of God to take root within us and ‘dwell in us’ bearing good fruit as it shapes and transforms us.
A good, simple and deeply powerful way of Bible meditation is called Lectio Divina: read through a passage of scripture slowly, a couple of times and as you do so notice which word or sentence draws you to it; return to this word/words and repeat them gently ( for about 5/10minutes) and allow them to ‘sink in’, savour them and let them ‘take root’ within you; then respond to the Lord in the words of you own prayer; lastly, sit in silence with Him for a few minutes, ‘be silent before the Word’ and simply allow Him to love you.
As part of your prayer this week consider doing Lectio Divina using the second reading for today’s Mass: Colossians 3: 12-17.
The bible was not given for our information but for our transformation ( D L Moody)
The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing until it divides soul from spirit, joints from marrow; it is able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
God of all grace, your Son Jesus Christ fed the hungry with the bread of life and the word of his kingdom: renew your people with your heavenly grace, and in all our weakness sustain us by your true and living bread; who is alive and reigns, now and for ever. Amen
A daily rhythm of prayer roots us in the reality of God and gives meaning, structure and order to the day and to our lives. This can be of added importance during times such as lockdown with its lack of social contact, helping us to grow in awareness that we are held in Communion with God and with each other through Christ our Lord. Prayer raises our awareness and celebrates the reality of this Communion. So let us continues to join together each day in a fellowship of prayer in union with Our Lord who unites us to Him and to each other wherever we are.
Every day at St Gabriel’s 8am Morning Prayer; 6pm Evening Prayer. Join with us at these times or any other time that’s good for you. Though we are not allowed public worship at the moment Mass will continue to be celebrated 8am every Wednesday and 9.30am every Sunday – join with us spiritually and prayerfully at these times.
You might like to begin your morning prayer with:
The night has passed and the day lies open before us; as we rejoice in the gift of this new day, so may the light of Christ set our hearts on fire with love for you O God, now and for ever. Amen And your evening prayer with:
As our evening prayer rises before you, O God, so may your Christ banish all darkness from our hearts and minds and set us free to sing your praise, now and for ever. Amen
The Church of England web site has A Service of Daily Prayer with Morning Prayer, Evening Prayer and Night Time Prayer (Compline) in either traditional or contemporary styles. You can either follow it online or download an app.
The God Minute offers daily “soft music, sacred scripture and a thoughtful reflection are weaved into a 10 minute prayer” – so long as you don’t mind its rather smoochy American style!
Pray for the Church: for John our Archbishop and all the leaders of the Churches; for all involved in the pastoral ministry of the Church, parish priests, hospital chaplains, lay ministers and assistants; for all Christ’s faithful people as we seek to live out our faith and following of the Lord by prayer, word and deed.
Pray for the sick and all who suffer: for all patients in hospital especially in the hospitals in our local trust, Singleton, Morriston, Cefn Coed and Gorseinon; for all with mental health issues; for all who are frightened, anxious, lonely, or isolated; for all NHS workers, medical, nursing and clerical, all counsellors and social workers; for all community workers; for all who have recently been bereaved and for those who have died.
Pray for the world: for the vulnerable, the poor and the displaced throughout the world; for all in areas with poor health provision; for all living in areas of political instability and poor and corrupt leadership; for all whose lives are scarred by violence, oppression and injustice; for all living under lockdown restrictions and for proper compliance with regulations to ensure the common good.
Give thanks for : the Word of God and the gift of the holy scriptures; for progress made in medical research for vaccines and advances made in treatment and patient care; for all working to maintain community and overcome isolation and loneliness; for the gift of friendship which transcends time and place.
Lord God, the well-spring of life, pour into our hearts the living water of your grace: increase our faith, and grant that we may serve you in your life-giving strength; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
Keep in touch…by phone, email or whatever social media you use. Remember those who live alone and get in touch with them. Visit St Gabriel’s Facebook page and website. Fr Mark can be contacted at any time by phone 464011 or email email@example.com Don’t hesitate to get in touch.
News…any items or news you want included in our bulletin please send to Paul Reynolds. Many thanks.
All Souls Day Requiem Mass: due to the present lockdown we are unable to have public worship until after November 9th so the Requiem Mass for All Souls cannot be celebrated on Nov 2nd. However, if possible we will transfer the Requiem to 10am Wednesday 11th November – if this is not possible, then sometime later in the month. At the moment it is unclear what restrictions will remain when we come out of lockdown. We will keep you posted!