of the
Good Shepherd
Good Shepherd - Newsletter
Advent 2019 - Advent 2020:

"The Year of the Word" celebrating 1400 anniversary of St. Jerome & 10th anniversary of "Dei Verbum"


For the last three weeks the Church has been opened with restricted hours, due to the need of Stewards in attendance to ensure constant cleansing etc. and protect visitors. We must thank all who have acted as stewards in this way and especially the Stewards of the Total Evening Cleansing process at the end of each day for giving so generously of their time and energy to support us all, the parishioners who have benefitted once again to meet with the Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament. It is wonderful to see so many taking up this opportunity to nourish the Spiritual Life. Thank you. Our thanks also to all who continue to ensure the parish network keeps us in touch; Our Friendship Group which became "virtual"; our SVP who keep us in touch with the Spiritual and Temporal needs of the community and of course, you the wonderful people who have never ceased to bring in so much for the Arnold Food Bank. There are so many others also who have done so much to hold the Body of Christ, the Church together, either by telephone, modern media or familial support. Wonderful!

Ask yourselves dear friends, "Why does the Church exist?" The simple answer surely is; "because we want it to!" and we do! The strength of Holy Mother Church is that people have come to know and love Jesus Christ in such a manner, that they are sure He is the only Son, begotten of the Eternal Father through the grace and power of the Holy Spirit alone, who became flesh and dwelt amongst us. From then on, he has drawn friends to himself and made them, by adoption in water and The Holy spirit, children of God. As such we gather around Him; the Church is the gathering around Jesus. We want to do it and we want others to share the joy of the Divine Bounty revealed in Jesus.

Three months ago on the toughest periods ever faced by the Church in this country, probably since the turbulence of the Reformation began. By the middle of March, all of our planning, just about throughout the world, but affecting us immediately here, was turned on it's head. Marriages have had to be postponed; Our 56 Confirmation Candidates and 58 First Communicants have experienced the disappointment of delay and our joy as a parish community in celebrating them has been lost for the time being. What of the great celebrations of the Lord? The Solemnity of Holy Week, and Easter, Eastertide and Pentecost; the beauty of Corpus Christi, celebrating the Lord as the beating Heart of His Church, The Divine Eucharistic Food of His Body and Blood and then of His great friends who wanted the Church to exist by the martyrdom of their lives, St. Peter and St. Paul, and not forgetting the great Saints feast days that have been celebrated quietly as the Holy Mass was celebrated each day in the Church.

It's the beginning of July now. What is happening? Well after much lobbying by the Bishops, at last we are allowed once again to open with simple celebration. Our Mass schedule (see previous page) is almost back to normal; I say almost - the timings are there, but we must look after one another - SOCIAL DISTANCING OF 2 METRES remains a priority, to ensure we challenge Covid 19 and support one another in prevention of its spread. To share Holy Mass for the time being, the Sunday Obligation on us is temporarily suspended and if you wish to attend YOU MUST BOOK A PLACE FOR EACH PERSON SHARING THE Divine Eucharist. If safety measures take a bit of getting used to, please just look at the efforts being made to give parishioners the best and safest experience. Make this a Parish/Team effort and there is room for optimism, because Holy Mother Church exists, because we want it to, and we want it to grow into the future that others will come to enjoy what we do. "My Son all I have is yours!". The words of Jesus in His parable about homecoming!

If you wish to book a place for the celebration of Holy Mass, for the time being either contact Marie Langford directly by telephone on 0794 815 1264 or email Alternatively the Diocese has developed a website as a central booking system that enables online booking for the Good Shepherd Church (and other participating Churches in the deanery.) Once registered (follow the instructions) you can book any Mass celebration up to seven days ahead. To maximise seating at The Good Shepherd please follow the booking instructions carefully. Household groups of up to three persons should book one "single" and larger household groups (four or more) should book "a family pew". We look forward to welcoming you back.

Current safety checks insist that the Church be thoroughly sanitized after each celebration of Holy Mass. (This is probably only three stages down from re Consecration!). To do this we could do with stewards who would offer a few minutes after Mass with the sanitizing equipment. If you can offer to help contact one of the stewards, you meet before Holy Mass or with Reg Carter. Numbers for private prayer are now reduced due to daily Masses being celebrated, but we hope to maintain the Good Shepherd Lady Chapel open for an hour after Mass each morning, thanks to the generosity of stewards. The Main Church, as in previous times will be locked immediately after sanitization in preparation for the next celebration. Rest assured, our stewards are so well briefed the Church interior is more sanitized than a hospital operating theatre.

At time of writing we still await details as to how to proceed with the Sacramental life of the Church, and will announce procedures when we receive them.
Baptisms. Forms to seek celebration of Baptism are on the parish website. Please review them and if you wish, return them. Although to date we cannot book a baptism in the Church, we will contact you on receipt as soon as we have the necessary permissions.
Penance, Confirmation, and First Communion. Still awaiting instructions for the safe celebration of these Sacraments, but some are enquiring about next year, 2021. Again we refer you to the Parish Website for details of expression of interest cards. The same are in place on the website for Adult Christian Initiation. Please do check them out and encourage people to begin to think now, as to whether the Lord is calling adults into Full Communion or the opportunity of revitalising Faith. Again, we will respond when permissions to do so are granted.

The Facebook page I have created to share resources on is called 'Children's Liturgy during Lockdown' and has weekly videos for each Sunday as well as craft ideas for children to have a go at which link to that Sunday's Gospel. The videos are just 10 minutes long, with a children's version of the Gospel, short explanation as well as little song, prayer and something for the children to make to help remind them of each week's Gospel message. Emily Pearson can be seen on the following youtube page.

Last updated 10.7.2020
3 Thackeray's Lane, Woodthorpe, Nottingham, NG5 4HT. Tel: (0115) 926 8288