A Message from Father Martin
It’s good to be in touch with you again and I’m very glad to be able to see so many of you at the open air Mass on Sunday mornings. Thanks to all who help to make it possible. We hope to be able to continue to have Mass outside well into the autumn, so don’t forget to come prepared with your coats, brollies, rugs or blankets.
We don’t know when this COVID pandemic will end. But keep your hearts up and we will surely come out of it more reflective and kinder people. You are in my prayers as I know I am in yours.
Mass on Sunday Morning at 10.30
As Father says we hope to have Mass outside for as long as possible. When we do move back into the Church we will have to get used to social distancing in an enclosed space. The wearing of face coverings inside the Church is now mandatory and the space will be organised to enable family groups to sit together whilst others maintain distance of one meter plus. Stewards will be on hand to seat you, so please do arrive in plenty of time as you may need to queue to enter the Church.
Mass on Thursday Mornings at 10 o’clock
The new school year has started so the playground is no longer available for parking on Thursday. If you are able please park in adjoining streets and leave spaces free for those who are less mobile. Please do not park on the drive, in the area by the bins or block the access to the school as this must be kept clear for emergency vehicles. We do however have permission to park across teachers’ cars in front of the Church for the duration of Mass, if necessary.
Sacred Heart School
Hilary Blake, the teachers and children are in our thoughts as they return to start a new school year. As you know they are getting used to new ways of doing things to minimise the risk of Coronavirus infection. They will also have to adapt quickly to meet any future changes in Government regulations. Please pray for them at this time.
You will be pleased to hear that we have a new Parish website. https://www.sacredheartchurchwadhurst.org.uk Our thanks go to Chrissie and Dan (a non-parishioner) who have worked very hard during lockdown to get this up and running. Worthy of mention is the link to our Just Giving page for those who would like to use this way of ensuring that their offertory donations are up to date. There is also a link on the Graveyard page for those who would like to donate to our Graveyard Appeal.
Those of you who visit the graveyard regularly will know that the access path requires some attention. Work is due to start on 19th October to upgrade the path to one which will be safer to use all year round. The costs of doing this are substantial however; the Parish Pastoral Council and the Parish Finance Committee feel that this is necessary expenditure to ensure the safety of parishioners for the foreseeable future. If you would like to donate directly to this appeal, please use the following link https://www.justgiving.com/team/SacredHeartChurch. In the meanwhile please take care when using the path to the graveyard especially in wet or icy conditions.
The parish is now in proud possession of a Sum Up machine which gives parishioners the ability to make offertory donations by ‘tapping’ their credit or debit card. The diocese is encouraging use of this facility especially as in these COVID days many people are not carrying cash. When your card is set up on the machine you can indicate if you want your offerings to be Gift Aided. After that all payments you make will automatically be dealt with according to your wishes. In time this should do away with the necessity for envelopes and make counting and banking the collection each week less time intensive.
We are currently trialling the machine on Sunday mornings for first collections only. We will extend this to the Thursday Mass and second collections in due course. This facility can also be used to make a donation to the Graveyard path appeal.
Help for people who are Self-isolating
Although, for now, the Coronavirus lockdown is over, some people with health conditions are still very concerned about going out. Also those going into hospital for routine operations often have to self-isolate before and after their procedures.
The parish is working with Carillon Cottage which has volunteers to help with shopping, collection of prescriptions and other tasks which may be difficult at this time. They also operate a Volunteer Driving Scheme to take clients to local medical and hospital appointments. The Cottage is located in the High Street next door to the Old Post Office and is open six mornings a week from 9.30 to 12.30pm. Please drop in or call 01892 785658/784191 if you need help.
More volunteer drivers are needed. If you are under 70 years of age, have some free time and would like to know more about the Volunteer Driving Scheme please contact the Cottage on the above number.