Happy Feast Day!
In place of the celebration of thanksgiving we all had planned, Fr Peter and Fr Graham have recorded a message for today with Fr Gerry, the Salesian Provincial.
Bishop William and Canon Stephen have also sent a message of thanks and some encouraging news for the future. Please see the message in full after this video:
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
Please be assured of our prayers for you all in these challenging days. The risen and ascended Lord never abandons us. He is with us in all that we face and we turn to Him and to the presence of the Holy Spirit to be our true hope in the days ahead.
We continue to pray for all those who have died in this pandemic, for those who mourn and for all whose lives have been greatly disrupted in recent weeks.
This is a historic time in the life of the Parish. Like the liturgical time of Ascension and Pentecost, it is one of farewell and new beginnings. We give thanks for the many years of service given by the Salesian Fathers. They have faithfully served the parish and its primary school so well. They now leave with our prayers and gratitude. Sadly, they do so under the restrictions placed on us all due to the pandemic. Very regrettably we are not able to be physically together to celebrate the Mass and other celebrations as had been intended. Rest assured, when it is possible to do so, we will have those postponed celebrations and invite Fr. Peter and Fr. Graham back, together with the wider Salesian family.
We are very grateful for the continuing presence of the Salesian Sisters and the charism of the Salesians that permeates the ethos of the Parish in so many ways will continue to serve the parish well into the future.
Some months ago when these changes were announced you may well recall it was announced that the parish would be served by Diocesan clergy. That is still the firm intention. You may also recall that it was explained that diocesan clergy moves take place later in the summer and so a temporary appointment would most likely be made for the summer months.
We are very pleased and very grateful to announce that Fr. Ben Lodge will be the temporary priest in charge for the parish during these summer months. Fr. Ben is a very experienced Passionist former Parish Priest and is the Promotor for the Cause of the Canonisation of Blessed Dominic Barberi. He will be resident with you, serving you until September. We know that you will make him welcome.
These coming months will be challenging for all parishes as we hopefully begin to open our churches again. As we do so, we will need to follow all proper, safe procedures ensuring we are exemplary citizens as well as faithful catholics.
In September your new Parish Priest will begin his ministry with you. That announcement will follow in due course as it will need to be timed appropriately with other announcements out of courtesy to all the parishioners in various parishes concerned in these moves.
Please continue to pray for your new clergy and for those who are responsible for the appointments. Once again we offer our thanks to Fr. Peter, Fr. Graham and all the Salesian clergy who have served this parish.
With assurance of prayers,
Bishop William Kenney - Assistant Bishop
Canon Stephen Wright – Vicar General