Posted by The Parish

Fourth Sunday of Lent/Mothering Sunday 31st MARCH 2019
Mauve Book Page 169

 Mothering Sunday, 

Ok, who wrote these words and can you sing the tune?

“Have you seen your mother, baby, ♬ standing in the shadow?” ♫ 

It is no co-incidence that the Gospel story this weekend is Luke’s famous parable. But have you ever pondered why it is always called: “The Prodigal Son”? It could just as easily be called “The Resentful Brother” or the “Foolish Father” or even: “Where was mum?” The parable is a typically Jewish story, but Jewish families are renowned for good business sense and also strong mothers who keep the domestic situation in good order. If we take the story at its simple face value, what could possibly be the reasoning to justify dividing the family estate? How would the first hearers have responded? Could it be that the father had seen an ill-advised business opportunity? Was he trusting the lad to set up Cohen-Cohen & Sons, trading healthy farm products overseas? It is just speculation but it illustrates the type of domestic dilemmas that can so easily unfold even in the best of families. Shouldn’t a good father have known the potential shortcomings of his child and not have provided him the wherewithal to finance his own destruction, and shouldn’t a good mother have kept the reins of common sense over all these guys? The Foolish Father breaks his heart for both his boys: “My son, you are with me always and all I have is yours. But it was only right we should celebrate and rejoice, because your brother here was dead and has come to life; he was lost and is found.” Now I wonder if the “Prodigal Son” is really “Tobit in Reverse”? In the book of Tobit, an unfortunate family, having fallen on hard times sees a reluctant father sending his Son on a long journey to retrieve an inheritance from a far away land. The dangerous adventure is eventually successful but it is the despairing mother, fearful of his ever coming home, who embraces the returning son: “Anna was sitting, watching the road by which her son would come… she ran and threw her arms round his neck. ‘Now I can die,’ she said, ‘I have seen you again’” Tobit 11v6&9. In the parable everything is opposite: The Son takes a fortunate family’s inheritance and squanders it in far away lands while the father stands waiting. Yet in both stories, there is reconciliation and rejoicing. Now we know right enough that the parable is illustrating the generosity of God’s love with his wayward children, but nevertheless “Where was Mum?” It must have been a question that perplexed Rembrandt! His famous picture illustrates the broken lad’s return home. There is light and grace spilling into the room illuminating the mesmerised servants. The resentful brother stands on the right. He cannot immediately bring himself to the same gesture of loving reconciliation but it looks as if he may be moving that way. Van Gogh wrote of Rembrandt: “He goes so deep into the mysterious that he says things for which there are no words in any language”. If you look carefully, top left in the darkness (above) there is an emerging female form. Surely this is Mum “standing in the shadows” She rejoices not only for her once lost son but that the three men are restored again as one family.

Oh yes ♫ Keith Richard & Mick Jagger 1966

God Bless Fr Kevin

has an emergency appeal for Zimbabwe Malawi & Mozambique, following the cyclone where millions of people are struggling to survive in desperate need of food, clean water and shelter. Your continued offerings are welcome and you may still use earlier fast day envelopes found in church. 

The Cafod Box is always safely emptied or use the secure red letterboxes at both churches
By credit/debit card on: 0808 58 588 85 

WE have FIVE adult members who are preparing for the Full Rites of Admission as Catholics at Easter this year Please Remember: Olivia, Debbie, Paul, Hannah & Joseph 

At 9.00am they will share in “The Scrutinies” 

Maggie’s Easter Hampers (OLSS) 

Maggie has prepared hampers to be raffled for Church Restoration Funds this Easter 


Bp Charles Henderson, Lily T, John G, Margaret G, Peggy M, Tom R, Isabella M, Catherine D, Martin R, David J, Rita L, Jackie W, William B, Elizabeth D, John H, Winifred B, Nathan S 

May they Rest in Peace 

Stations of the Cross during Lent 

The Stations of the Cross are conducted after Mass at 10.00am on Fridays at OLSS and at 7.00pm on Friday Evenings at St Joseph. 

Thank You for Your Offering 24th March 

OLSS: £545 Cafod F/D additional £62
St Joseph: £400 Cafod F/D £410
(These figures do not include monies now received by Direct Debit) 

Parish Recipe Book! 

Have you sent a recipe? Email: [email protected] 

Baptism Preparation Wednesday 10th April 

If you are seeking the Baptism of a child at either church please attend the preparation at OLSS in the Parish rooms at 7.00pm. 

“Blessed is She” A study group for women 

This group continues on Wednesday April 3rd at 10.30am at the OLSS parish rooms. Children welcome. Refreshments available. For more info see contact in the newsletter in the church.


Saturday 30th Mass OLSS 6.00pm Int: Family of Mary O 

Sunday 31st Mass OLSS 9.00 Int: Fr Kevin St Aubyn (W/B) 

Mothering Sunday Mass St J’s 10.00 Int: Florence Thg 

(Fourth Of Lent) Mass OLSS 11.00 Int: Anja F 

Monday 1st No Mass on Monday 

Tuesday 2nd Larry M (RiP) Sung Requiem Mass 

(NB No 9.30 Today) OLSS at 12.00noon. Cremation at Hither Green 

Mass St J’s 7.00 Int: Megala (W/B) 

Wednesday 3rd Mass OLSS 9.30 Int: Mrs T (W/B) 

Thursday 4th Mass OLSS 9.30 Int: Patrick B (RiP) 

Mass St J’s 11.00 Int: Patrick C (RiP) 

Friday 5th Mass OLSS 9.30 Int: Fr Philip O’Reiley (RiP) 

Stations of the Cross after 9.30am Mass OLSS on Friday 

Stations of the Cross at 7.00pm at St Joseph on Friday 

Saturday 6th Mass OLSS 6.00pm Int: Dan & Kathleen B (RiP) 

Sunday 7th Mass OLSS 9.00 Int: John O (RiP) 

Fifth Sunday Mass St J’s 10.00 Int: 

Of Lent Mass OLSS 11.00 Int: Parish & People 

OLSS big clean for Easter Wednesday 10th April from 7.00pm Come and Help 

Bonus Cream Eggs This week to Max Holloway for spotting the deliberate error on last Weeks’ Newsletter: Charles 1st was married to the Catholic Henrietta Maria, Charles ll was maried to the Portuguese Princess Catherine De Broganza (also Catholic). Bonus Cream Egg also to Neil Edmonds. He spotted stately “Gallions with Canons” should have been “Cannons” because “Canons” are those senior clergy who turn up to fire lesser minions like me! There again Neil loses his bonus egg straight away for referring to “Canon John Henry Newman” because he was a Cardinal ! Meanwhile check in to see the Original Botticelli “Madonna of the Pomegranate” Currently seen at the Rangers House Greenwich. See Jane’s “Twitter” page. 

Post expires at 9:15pm on Saturday May 4th, 2019