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Church Unusual: Sunday 4 October 2020

My dear Franciscans

On Sunday we celebrate our Patronal Festival – St Francis Day.

It is also the day that we, for the first time in six months, can come to church in person.

It is also the first time that we will be broadcasting live on YouTube with a live congregation at the 8:30 service.

In all it is an especially significant day for our parish family, and a complex day for the leadership to negotiate. Please pray that everything runs smoothly.

This year we must surely celebrate our Patronal Festival with gratitude to God:

· Gratitude for the privileged position we have been in – the ability to make use of social media and new technologies to keep close together as a community of faith and love.

· Gratitude that we have been able, so far, to weather the financial bite of lockdown better than we anticipated.

· Gratitude that, because of the generosity of our family, we have been able to bring relief to some families who have found themselves in extremely stressed financial situations.

· Gratitude that we have been able to gradually increase our social outreach during lockdown through the provision of food, clothes and blankets and so much more.

· Gratitude that our family is blessed with so many faithful people who have given, unstintingly, of their time, their effort and their resources to ensure the smooth running of the parish.

· Gratitude for a leadership group that, in time of great stress, wove a seamless tapestry that has held our community together.

So, as we gather on Sunday, in various ways, let us raise our hearts and voices in thanksgiving to God for all these blessings.

With love and gratitude for you all


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