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Latest News

THE NEW ADMINISTRATOR

thumbnail image Fr Sławomir Witoń, Parish Priest at Enfield since 2011 (and Dean of Enfield 2012-18), has been appointed Administrator of Westminster Cathedral where he was appointed a Chaplain in 2005 then Sub-Administrator, 2008-2011. Fr Sławomir will take up his new appointment on 1 November 2020. Many of you will remember him from previous years and we warmly welcome him back to the Cathedral.

Meanwhile the Cardinal has appointed Fr Daniel Humphreys, Acting Administrator, as Parish Priest at Enfield. Fr Daniel came to the Cathedral in September 2018 and was appointed Acting Administrator in June 2020. He will also take up his new appointment on 1 November 2020. Due to ongoing Covid restrictions you will understand that there cannot be a parish farewell but hopefully there will be a future occasion when we can formally thank Fr Daniel. We congratulate him on his new post and hope he will be very happy there and thank him for everything he has done during his time here.

REGISTRATION FOR FIRST HOLY COMMUNION 2021

thumbnail image Parents who have children in in Year 3 and who would like them to receive their First Holy Communion here in 2021, please contact Fr Vincent M’bui. The course commences on Saturday, 21 November at 10am and the deadline for applications is Saturday, 31 October. Email Fr Vincent at vincentmbui@rcdow.org.uk.

CHAPLAIN’S MESSAGE: JOY IN DARK TIMES

thumbnail image Autumn is one of the most beautiful times of the year. Even as it changes from summer, there is just enough light and warmth to enjoy its beauty, without having to walk rapidly to a heated home. There has, of course, been a lot more to add to the general melancholy which sets in about this time. Notwithstanding all that might change - and change is never easy - as Christians, we can always have great hope. This hope is not a vague optimism. It is the assurance that God is aware and in charge of everything that happens. God cares, and is always working. When we are grounded in this truth, we can be hopeful in the midst of our difficulties. This hope produces joy. There was some real joy last week as we received several adults into the Church, delayed from Easter. Fifteen were prepared for baptism, ten for Reception from other denominations and another five adults for Confirmation this year. They came from varied backgrounds, professions and countries. Some have made long, and even painful journeys. Oremus will feature some of their stories in the next few months. Taking the step to become Catholic was not always easy or without cost. They came back together (online) this week, to celebrate and share their experiences. One said he felt very close to God after Confirmation. Another talked of a huge burden that seemed to have lifted, following his first Confession. Almost all of them spoke of a clear sense of joy that seemed to have been infused into their life. It is a testimony to God’s work in their lives. This grace was made concretely present in the Sacraments: one said her ‘terror’ of flying seemed to have subsided miraculously.

Those of us who are ‘cradle’ Catholics sometimes lose sight of the magnitude of the grace given us - God’s free gift of his life - made present in our lives. Like the workers labouring from morning in last week’s gospel, we can notice the heat of the day (or the cold and dark in our case) and our very real worries; God seems to come close only to tell us to do something we’d rather not do. We say a half-hearted ‘Yes’ like the elder son in this week’s gospel, without much conviction. We are found without joy. This joy is not something psychological - it is a fruit that the Spirit produces when our lives are open to God (Gal 5:22). Many of those who make these difficult journeys to conversion, however, experience this grace as true gift that has reached them in their struggles. They have found God to be the unchanging centre in a world that keeps changing and the joy of the Lord becomes their strength (Neh 8:10). Maybe, if you find yourself this week without strength, ask the Holy Spirit to restore his joy in your life (Ps 51:12). God continues to work and to call.

We are about to resume our catechetical programme for adults this year. Have you been thinking of becoming Catholic or maybe know someone who has? Why not invite them to come and talk to a priest?

Fr Rajiv Michael

THIS WEEK'S DIARY

thumbnail image The Cathedral opens 30 minutes before each Mass and closes for cleaning after each Mass.

Service times, Monday to Saturday:
8.00 Mass, 10.30 Mass (Latin, Monday to Saturday), 12.30 Mass, 17.30 Mass (streamed), Confessions: 12.00-12.30, 17.00-17.30
The Cathedral is open for prayer 14.00-16.30 Monday to Friday

Service times on Sundays:
Sat 17.30 Vigil Mass (Organ, streamed), 8.00 Mass, 10.30 Solemn Mass (Choir, streamed), 12.30 Mass (Organ), 15.00 Solemn Vespers & Benediction (Choir, streamed only), 16.00 Mass, 18.00 Mass (Organ, streamed), Confessions: 12-12.30pm, 17.30-18.00

Sunday 27 September 26th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
18.00 Cathedral Mass on World Migrants & Refugee Day:
Bishop McAleenan

Monday 28 September Feria
10.30 Cathedral SVP School attends Mass

Tuesday 29 September Ss MICHAEL, GABRIEL and RAPHAEL,
Archangels

Wednesday 30 September St Jerome, Priest and Doctor

Thursday 1 October St Thérèse of the Child Jesus, Virgin
and Doctor of the Church
10.30 Cathedral Red Mass: Cardinal Nichols

Friday 2 October The Holy Guardian Angels,
Friday abstinence

Saturday 3 October BVM on Saturday
15.00 Cathedral Parish Confirmations: Fr A Gallagher

Sunday 4 October 27th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

ARRANGEMENTS FOR MASS AND CONFESSIONS IN THE CATHEDRAL

thumbnail image ARRANGEMENTS FOR MASS
The Cathedral opens half an hour before each Mass is scheduled to begin. The capacity of the Cathedral for each Mass is 239 individuals (120 households). There is no need to queue for long periods of time before the Cathedral opens.
Please make your usual donation through planned giving, online, or via contactless points or collection boxes around the Cathedral.
There will be no congregational singing at Mass and face coverings should be worn.
CONFESSIONS
Due to the current restrictions, the hours for confessions are limited. They will be heard in the Baptistry or the Chapel of St Gregory and St Augustine.
The priest and penitent will be standing, face to face and at appropriate social distance. Your confession needs to be brief, so please arrive prepared.
TRACK AND TRACE CONTACT CARDS
Parishes have been advised to keep a record of those attending each Mass, which can be used to contact parishioners in the event that someone in the congregation tests positive for Covid-19 as part of the Track and Trace system. In the Cathedral and on our website ‘Contact Cards’ are available for you to fill in, which we ask you to bring on the next occasion you come to Mass, leaving them in the box available at the main doors. The cards will be kept in a secure location for 21 days before being destroyed. This is not a compulsory measure, but we encourage you to take part for the common good of our society.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION
The toilets, Gift Shop and Café remain closed.
Priests are available by appointment only; please call or email Clergy House to make an appointment.

HOMELESSNESS

thumbnail image HOMELESSNESS
At Westminster Cathedral, thanks to our strong relationship with the wider Faith Volunteer Network and the rough sleeping team at Westminster City Council, we can be the first parish nationally to pilot a new community solution to homelessness, with help from Caritas Westminster and local homeless professionals. Do you have access to local accommodation or land; do you have the skills and resources to help one or more homeless person, or do you have time and patience to dedicate to helping someone? We are looking for a group of parishioners to come together to take shared responsibility, using the Community Homeless Response model, to ensure personal care for those in need. Will you come forward, to give someone a hand up, instead of a hand out? If yes, then please contact Clergy House Reception to find out more today, email CHReception@rcdow.org.uk.

FRIENDS' MEMORIAL APPEAL

thumbnail image The Friends are raising funds in memory of Canon Christopher Tuckwell. You may use the VMG link to send a donation or a cheque can be sent to Clergy House for ATTN TUCKWELL MEMORIAL APPEAL. Please make cheques payable to ‘The Friends of Westminster Cathedral’. Details of all forthcoming events are in the Friend’s Autumn Newsletter which is out now. Please join the Friends at this time and help to support Westminster Cathedral friends@rcdow.org.uk

OCTOBER EDITION OF OREMUS MAGAZINE

thumbnail image The October edition of Oremus, the Cathedral magazine, with the usual mix of informative quality content is now available for collection from the stand by the main doors of the Cathedral, at the Ambrosden Avenue exit and online via the homepage of the Cathedral website. Please do enjoy reading it and recommend it to or share it with your friends.

YOUR PRAYERS, PLEASE

thumbnail image Please remember our parish Confirmation candidates and those from Westminster School, who will be receiving this Sacrament on Saturdays 3 and 10 October.

SPONSORING SANCTUARY LAMPS

thumbnail image As you may be aware, there are various candles and lamps which burn perpetually around the Cathedral; particularly before the Blessed Sacrament, in the Lady Chapel, and at the relics of St John Southworth.
Would you like one of these to burn in memory of a loved one, or for a particular intention? If so, we are asking for a donation of £10 per week, which will go towards defraying the costs of running the sacristy: candles, hosts, wine and other necessities for the celebration of Mass. Please hand in at Clergy House Reception or in one of the Cathedral’s donation boxes an envelope marked ‘Sanctuary Lamp Donation’, together with a note stating your particular intention, and the light you would like to burn for that intention.

AMERICAN FRIENDS

thumbnail image American taxpayers can receive a US income tax deduction for their contributions to support the work and heritage of the Cathedral by directing their contributions to American Friends of Westminster Cathedral, Inc., a non profit 501(c)(3) Organization (EIN # 13-2983174).

They will also enjoy special events and receive newsletters about Cathedral activities. Donations may be made through bequests and charitable trusts.

Contact Ms. Una Chang, President, American Friends of Westminster Cathedral, Inc., P.O. Box 92, New York, New York 10185-0092, e-mail UChang1@aol.com

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