Interested in becoming a Catholic?
Sacraments For Children
What, when and how to go about it?
Jump in and join our youth group (Yrs 7-10)
Subscribe to our Newsletter
When I was a little boy in the village, there were a set of rules that we had to obey if we didn’t want to be punished by God. Those rules were, going to pray every day in the church and not being late; once we were inside the church we shouldn’t say a word except prayer; we shouldn’t turn around and see the back side of the church. We should focus our eyes and minds on the tabernacle where the sacrament of the Body of Christ was kept. Turning your back on the tabernacle meant disrespect to Jesus. There were some other activities that before and after we did them, we should make the sign of the cross; passing through a church and statues of Jesus or saints, before and after meals, before going to bed and after getting up, before taking bath/shower, before swimming, before fishing and even when we went to the toilet etc. We were reminded by the school teachers that if we didn’t comply with those rules, we were committing sin and would be punished by God. The local authority and the pastoral council would become like the agents of God to spy on people and punish them when they didn’t comply with these rules. One day my two friends and I, (year 2 in primary school) went fishing instead of attending weekday Mass (There was no Mass every Sunday. People only had Mass once a month when the priest visited the village). We were caught by some villagers. They reported us to the local authority. We were then punished by the local council who told us to carry water from the well to fill the tank of the presbytery. It was about 1km in distance. We had to do that the whole day to fill the tank. While doing that, people mocked us as lazy ones who did not have faith.
It’s very obvious that what I experienced in the past of God was that of a punishing God, who condemned those who commit sin or made mistakes or failed. I am glad that I later found in my experience especially as an MSC that my God is not a punishing God but a “Loving and Compassionate” God. My faith in the early years was based on fear. After being liberated I felt that my faith was not based on fear but on “love”. God loves me so much, and I have experienced that love. I do things not based on fear to be condemned and punished but out of Love that liberates.
The Gospel of this weekend is clear: “God sent his Son into the world not to condemn the world, but so that through him the world might be saved” (John 3:16-17). This message is really comforting. It’s because he loves the world. Some people may ask, ‘what about judgment that was also mentioned in some other parts of the Scriptures’? Judgment is not so much about something that will be executed in the future, but it happens now. When we do things that hurt others or contrary to life-giving, we may feel something that is not right within us. The judgment happens in our heart when we feel uneasy with ourselves. This is the kind of “judgment” that Lent invites us to.
Dear friends, thank you for your generous support last week with the purchase of my music. SISTER MARIA – VERBUM DEL MISSIONARIES.
Our 2018 Confirmation program commences 18th March at 10.45am. If you would like your child to participant in the Sacrament, please register online at http://olrkensington.org.au or contact the Parish Office for further details. The Ceremony will take place at St Mary’s Cathedral on 27th May in the presence of Bishop Umbers.
Signup sheets for Easter Masses are available on the notice board in the church foyer.
We will be celebrating Easter this year with another egg-hunt for the children on Easter Sunday. If you would like to donate eggs, we are asking for bags of small solid eggs please. Donations can be left in the Easter Bag in the foyer of the church. Thank you for your generosity.
Music Rehearsals 7.30pm every Tuesday night leading up to Holy Week | All welcomed to join. For further details contact: Johanes 0431 019 146.