• Olivia's Baptism!

    Congratulations to Olivia, with her parents Paul, Laura and family

  • Andy and Lucille's Wedding!

    Many congratulations to Andy and Lucille

  • Harry's Baptism

    Many congratulations to Harry and his parents Natalie and Matt!

  • Congratulations!

    Many congratulations to Michael and Lucy on their wedding!

  • Confirmation 2019

    Congratulaions to: Bonnie, Imani, Henry, Darrell and Chimezie!

  • Baptism of Louis!

    With Parents Kim & Darren

  • Baptism of Beatrice!

    With Parents James & Kellie

  • Baptism of Jake & Henry!

    With Parents Leah & Dan and friends

  • At the 'Flame' Event!

    Our Fabulous young people!

  • Baptism of Joseph!

    With parents Clare and Martin & sister Lily

  • Our Gardening Group

    Some members hard at work!

  • Guild of St Stephen

    Our newly enrolled servers!

  • Isabelle's Baptism!

    Parents Andy and Lucille and Godparents with Fr Brett

  • Austin's Baptism!

    Parents Aaron and Nicola and family with Fr Brett

  • Confirmation 2018!

    Bishop Alan and Fr Brett with our fabulous Confirmani!

  • Our Parish Church

    Ness Road Shoeburyness

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25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

My dear friends in Christ,

SVP FOOD PARCELS

A great big ‘thank you’ to those who responded to our appeal for food for the SVP. We have received a marvellous lot of donations this week. As previously mentioned, the food is picked up on Fridays and taken to the SVP in Short Street, who distribute it to those in need.

Obviously they are always grateful for anything, but particularly in demand at present are the following: -

Cereals
Pasta Sauces (they have a lot of packs of dried pasta at present)
Protein Tins, such as Baked Beans/ Beans and Sausages/Ravioli/ Tuna/ Chilli/Curry etc.
Tea/Coffee
Tins of Custard/Rice Pudding/Fruit
Tinned Vegetables
Squash and Juices
packets of cup-a-soup/Tinned Soup
Microwaveable Rice
Instant Noodles/Pasta
Plus Toilet Rolls/Shower Gel/Toothbrushes and Paste/Shampoo

If you want further information please check out the SVP Short Street Facebook page. They are doing a marvellous job there.

I’m leaving you in the very capable hands of our dear Sharon and Frs. Basil and Michael.

God bless and take care,

Fr Brett

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Church Re-Opening for Mass Guidance

Dear friends,

Dear friends,

Sorry for this long email, but there is a lot to cover. The information provided here is supplementary to my previous email, so it is important that you are aware of its content.

I would like to take you through some significant points about our opening for Mass – please read carefully.

Booking

As I mentioned before, because of the reduced capacity, you will need to book your seat(s) for Mass beforehand and well in advance. Turning up on the ‘off chance’ would most likely result in you not being able to attend Mass because the church could be full.

As we have to provide a ’Track & Trace’ audit trail, the easiest and most helpful way to book is online (please see our Parish website - www.saintgeorgeschurch.co.uk.)

If you are unable to do this, try to find someone else who can. But remember, for ‘Track & Trace’ purposes, they must use your details and not their own. When you book online an email will automatically be sent to Sharon who will allocate your seats and email you back with the details. If it is out of her office hours, she will not be able to get back to you immediately. Please be patient and please be content with the seats allocated for you; we are not able to chop and change. It is an administrative challenge as it is.

If you are unable to do any of the above two options, then please telephone Sharon during her office hours to book it for you.

If you do come along on the ‘off chance’ and there happens to be space, then one of the stewards will need to take a few details from you for ‘Track & Trace’ purposes.

The online booking system will be going live from Monday, 6th July and will close at 12 noon on Friday (10th July). This will give you the opportunity to book for Masses on 11th, 12th, 14th & 17th July. From this will follow a routine where the booking system will be open from 13th - 17th July for Masses on 18th, 19th, 21st & 24th July…etc, etc.

It is recommended that you wear a face-covering in church, but it is not mandatory. Please arrive in good time before Mass starts.

On reopening our churches for Mass, Cardinal Vincent Nichols offers these cautionary words: - ‘Please be aware that there will be a limit on the number of people who can attend Mass in our churches. We therefore need to reflect carefully on how and when we might be able to attend Mass. We cannot return immediately to our customary practices. This next step is not, in any sense, a moment when we are going ‘back to normal’.

We ask every Catholic to think carefully about how and when they will return to Mass. Given there is no Sunday obligation, we ask you to consider the possibility of attending Mass on a weekday. This will ease the pressure of numbers for Sunday celebrations and allow a gradual return to the Eucharist for more people.'

Arriving at the church

On entering the church, please sanitise your hands and then wait to be assisted by a steward. You should already know your place in the church from when you booked it online or by telephone. However, there will be a ‘seat map’ displayed in the outer porch with your name on it. Pews are identified by letters and numbers, i.e. L1 = Left hand side of church, pew 1.

Mass

Please note that the UK Government has stated that Services should be conducted in, ‘the shortest possible time’.

Mass will unfold in the usual way except there will be no singing. We cannot provide Mass cards because of the risk of transmission of the virus. If you have a Missal, please bring it with you. To start off with, the readings will be done by the duty Altar Server.

Procedure for Holy Communion

The Communion Rite has been ‘reworked’ and is quite different! I will explain at each Mass the procedure that needs to be followed, however, here are the highlights: -

• At the place where communion is to be given to the congregation, a physical barrier (prie-dieu) will be there to socially distance the priest from the communicant.
• You must remain seated until you are invited to come forward by the steward.
• When you approach the priest, you should put out your arms at “full stretch” so that there is a good distance between you and him. Your hands, palms upwards, one on top of the other, should be extended as flatly as possible. Communion will then be given silently and in the hand.
• Having consumed the host, you may return to your seat to say a brief prayer of thanksgiving, after which you must leave the church (the Blessing and dismissal has already taken place).
• As you leave the church, please sanitise your hands.
• There will be baskets for you to place your offering in. If there is a 2nd Collection, there will be a basket marked as such.
• Please be aware of others and the social distancing regulations as you leave.
• Please do not congregate in the porch or outside the church.
• After you have left church it will be cleaned.

A note about Holy Communion

If you feel uncomfortable and would rather not receive Holy Communion, that is perfectly ok. Instead, you can simply make a spiritual communion. Here is a prayer to help you: -

Spiritual Communion

My Jesus, I believe that You are truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as being already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

It will take some time for us to adapt to these changes and we may have to make little adjustments along the way, so please be patient and understanding.

I am extremely grateful to Sharon, David and Frank, who have worked very hard – and continue to do so – to make all this happen.

With every blessing,

Fr Brett