“Tell the students to give up their small ambitions and come eastward to preach the gospel of Christ.” (St. Francis Xavier)
SAINT OF THE WEEK, 3rd December: ST. FRANCIS XAVIER (1506-1552)
He was born in the Basque country of Spain in 1506. He met Ignatius Loyola when he was a student in Paris, and he was ordained priest in 1537. In 1541 the Pope sent him as part of a mission to India, and he spent the rest of his life in the East, preaching the Gospel in Goa and Malacca. He made many converts and fought against the exploitation of the native population by the Europeans. He spent two years on a successful mission to Japan, laying the foundations of many Christian communities; and in 1552, after entering China secretly to preach the Gospel there, he died of fever and exhaustion on the Chinese island of Shangchwan (from Universalis).
St. Francis is Patron Saint of the Missions.
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MISS SHEILA McDONALD, RIP: With great sadness, I announce the death of Miss Sheila McDonald, a long-standing parishioner of St. Mary’s, Largs, and a well-known person in the town, who had moved a few months ago to a Care Home in Glasgow. Our sincerest sympathies go to her niece, Sheila Hannay, and to the whole extended family, on the loss of their dear Aunt. May the Lord grant her eternal rest. The Requiem Mass for Sheila will take place at St. Mary’s on Wednesday, 9th December, at 11am, and thereafter to the Clyde Crematorium.
CHRISTMAS MASS TIMES: 1) Millport. Christmas Eve, 4.30pm. 2) Largs. Christmas Eve, 7.30pm. Christmas Day: 10am & 12 Noon. An 8am Mass on Christmas Day will also be celebrated if the number of those who book for it is 12 or over.
I know that most will prefer the Vigil Mass, but we are limited to the numbers allowed by the government. I therefore urge parishioners to make the effort this year to attend one of the other Masses if the Vigil is full.
Booking for Christmas Masses (4.30pm; 8am, 10am & 12 Noon) will take place as follows: Wednesday 9th, Thursday 10th, Friday 11th and Wednesday 16th, Thursday 17th and Friday 18th December. Booking hours: Wednesdays, 6-8pm; Thurs. & Fridays, 6-7pm.
Priority must go to our own parishioners. If any places are left, they will be allotted on a first come first serve basis.
Family groups will be limited to five members per family in order to conserve safe distancing.
Current Covid restrictions for gatherings in churches must remain in place, until and unless the Government states otherwise which is, sadly, very unlikely. For both parish churches, therefore, there can be no more than 50 people at each Mass, masks must be worn, 2 metre social distancing observed and hand sanitisation done on entering and leaving the premises.
I truly regret that we have to observe all these measures, especially at Christmas, but we must at all costs avoid as much as possible the risk of infection, both out of respect for people’s lives and to ensure that we don’t get “closed down” again altogether.
ONLY THOSE WHO HAVE BOOKED A PLACE WILL BE GIVEN ENTRY TO THE CHURCH.
THURSDAY AGAPE: Please remember to “tune in” via live-stream, even for a few minutes, to our weekly appointment of Thursday Agape from 6.30pm-8pm. The idea is to INTERRUPT your normal schedule deliberately to take a moment or more to say to Jesus very directly and sincerely, “Jesus, I love you. I agape-love you = I love you in a self-sacrificing way.” If we all do this in our parishes, even if we can’t join the live-stream, we create a wave of love which rises to the Lord and returns back down upon us and across our locality. It will bring only good to everyone, especially at this difficult time. It may bring healing, peace, conversion of heart and so much more. What is certain is that the Lord will repay our parishes more than a thousand-fold. So, come on, everyone, let’s detach for a few moments from whatever we are doing and AGAPE-LOVE THE LORD! The Agape time is distributed thus:
1] Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at 6.30pm, with silent prayer until 6.45pm.
2] Evening Prayer of the Church [leaflet link on this home-page “Upcoming Events”], 6.45pm-7pm.
3] Four short Scripture texts with questions for silent reflection, distributed across the period 7pm-7.30pm.
4] Rosary and Litany, 7.30pm-8pm.
5] Simple blessing with the Blessed Sacrament, 8pm.
CHRISTMAS SHOPPING ONLINE, NO COST FUNDRAISING FOR THE DIOCESE OF GALLOWAY: Please consider raising funds for our Diocese at no cost to yourself by using two online shopping services. Details can be found at this link: https://www.rclargsandmillport.com/2020/09/21/online-no-cost-fund-raising-for-the-diocese-of-galloway/
NOVENA to Our Lady during the Pandemic: https://www.rclargsandmillport.com/2020/09/19/novena-prayer-to-our-lady-during-the-pandemic/
ECUMENICAL PRAYER: For this Sunday, please click on the link for the prayer recited by all Christians in Scotland at 7pm, to pray for the divine assistance during the pandemic: https://www.rclargsandmillport.com/2020/11/28/ecumenical-prayer-29-11-20/
PLEASE NOTE ALL MASS ATTENDERS FOR SAINT MARY’S IN LARGS:
- WHEN TO BOOK. Bookings for Mass on Saturday-Sunday will be accepted only at the times stipulated: i.e. beginning on the prior Wednesday. The times for booking are: Wednesday, 6-8pm; Thursday, 6-7pm; and Friday, 6-7pm. Any attempts to book before the Wednesday will not be taken into account. This is to ensure that everyone has an equal chance to make a booking. Leave a message with your name and number if the phone is engaged when you call. This will ensure your place in the queue.
- HOW TO BOOK: Bookings must be made by telephoning this phone number: 07398 109094. Emails and text messages will not be accepted.
- ATTENDANCE: You must attend only the Mass for which you have booked. You cannot swap with someone else unless you have first asked via the telephone number just mentioned. Nor can you decide on your own to go to a different Mass. The reason for this strict policy is to ensure that we have an accurate list of who attends what Mass for the purposes of test and trace.
- WHERE YOU LIVE. Priority will be given to those who are parishioners in the canonical sense of the term, i.e. those whose homes are within the territory of the parish (Largs, Fairlie & Skelmorlie). If any places are left, they will be assigned to non-parishioners on a first come, first served basis.
- FAIR SPREAD: If you are a parishioner and you are too late to receive a place at Mass on a given weekend, your name will be given priority for the subsequent weekend. This priority is not afforded to non-parishioners.
- ENTRANCE to the church will be from 20 minutes before Mass begins. Everyone should be seated by 5 minutes before Mass begins. Please remember that you cannot be admitted to the church if you have not booked a place as described above and if you do not have a face-mask.
- NO ADMISSION will be given to the church after Mass begins: that is 6pm for the Sunday Vigil Mass and 10am for the Sunday Morning Mass.
Keep up to date with all news from the Vatican in English at: https://www.vaticannews.va/en.html
LARGS (live-streamed): Saturday Vigil, 6pm & Sunday 10am; Monday-Saturday: 10am Mass.
MILLPORT (not live-streamed): 12.15pm, Sunday.
- St. Mary’s Parish live-streaming via YouTube. Links are below: