Fr. John’s Letter – 25th April 2020

Dear Parishioners of St Jerome’s and St Anne’s

‘Time flies’. We have heard the saying often enough. I was reflecting this morning that the last public Mass celebrated in our churches was six weeks ago. Already we have arrived at the Third Sunday of Easter and the lockdown will enter its sixth week on Monday night. The beautiful weather has been very welcome, and also a big temptation. But for many of us, the time seems to have flown by, although not for all.

Behind many a closed door, some are living a life of increasing desperation. I am hearing more about this. It is troubling and concerning. The Formby SVP are offering to reach out to anyone who needs a phone call and an opportunity to talk. It is a welcome and simple gesture. Perhaps all of us can think again of those living alone who would appreciate a call and a listening ear.

The New Testament accounts of the appearances of the Risen Jesus have one thing in common. Those who saw him and heard his voice recognised him. They knew he was not a ghost. He was the Jesus they knew, but now he was different. He brought reassurance, new heart. He certainly did not promise an end to suffering and difficulties. These would remain as part of every human life. But he promised a way through, a sight of something new and eternal beyond where suffering and pain could not reach.

New heart. We need it. To begin again. To be unafraid of what lies ahead and to begin to let go of what now lies in the past. All the time, trusting in the Risen Jesus as we try to become more aware of the needs of those around us. So let us continue our journey through these difficult days together and remember often the last words that Jesus spoke to his disciples, before returning to heaven;

‘and behold I am with you always, even to the end of the world’

God bless each one of you,

Father John