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  • Greetings from the Presbytery
    Warmest greetings once again as we approach the end of the working week (although I know many of you also have to work at the weekend!) - as always, I hope this finds you and your families safe, well and in good spirits.

    Last week we were able to open the church for the public celebration of Mass - the first time for over 2 weeks. I felt very emotional as I opened the doors of the church wide and welcomed people back into our lovely church. We were able to open because it was a Requiem Mass - the only time that we are allowed to celebrate Mass in public at the moment. The funeral was for Barbara Tanikie - a lovely lady parishioner, originally from Ghana, who has been part of our parish community, together with her children and grandchildren, for many, many years and who used to come to the 11am Sunday Mass. There is a maximum of 30 people allowed at the moment in the church for a funeral and many of her closest family and friends gathered together in the church to pray for eternal rest for "Aunty Barbara" who died quietly in her sleep last month in her home in Bentworth Road, just a few weeks before her 80th birthday. She was a wonderful parishioner and a rock of strength and support for her family and friends over the years. She is the latest of too many of that wonderful older generation of older parishioners who we have mourned for this year. They are very much the generation who helped to build and establish our parish and from the 1960's onwards and we owe them so much. May she and all of those who have died rest in peace and rise in glory.

    Back in the presbytery, I have been phoning a few parishioners to see how they are coping with life under lockdown. I can hear that many of you are finding this second period of lockdown much more challenging than the first lockdown earlier in the year. Although it's a much shorter lockdown, I think the gloomier, more "challenging" weather outside the window is making it more difficult psychologically for many. Keep going -  and soon we will hopefully be coming out of lockdown! Think of it in a positive way if you can and think of these remaining days as an opportunity you might not have again, before life gets busier and noisier again, to do some of those things which you are always putting off. For me that very much means tidying my room! I have made a good start but still need a couple of good sessions to really bring it up to the standard it would need to be if my mum ever came to visit White City! Maybe you could start writing a few Christmas cards/letters as well. I guess the younger generation amongst you have probably not spent very much time in your lives writing and sending letters! In our age of WhatsApp, SnapChat, Twitter etc... everything is short and sweet. But I find that it is still one of the most beautiful surprises and gifts to receive a hand-written card/letter through the post which someone has put all that time and thought into specially for you. So perhaps you could write a list of 12 people you would particularly like to write to as we reach the final weeks of this very difficult 2020 year and write to one of them a day. Spread a bit of love and light in these dark days. Just a thought...

    Finally, although there are some of you for whom this is a really busy time such as those of you working in the NHS or caring professions, I know that for many of you these are long and often quite boring days. Certainly that was the comment I heard most often in the phone calls this afternoon - "It's so boring!!". Well here below is something to stimulate you, widen your horizons and lead us all beyond the bubble of our own existence. I am working at the moment on a really exciting project (all to be revealed early next year!) with the wonderful charity "Friends of the Holy Land". You may remember that 4 years ago Peter Rand, from Friends of the Holy Land, came to speak to us here in the parish during Advent and tell us more about their urgent work to support the Christian communities in the Holy Land - communities which are growing smaller and smaller year by year as the pressures on them increase. Peter has sent me details this week of some really interesting talks/Zoom meetings/on-line cookery demonstrations, which FHL are organising in the coming weeks. See below for all the details:

    You are invited by Friends of the Holy Land to participate in two forthcoming occasions, for which there is no charge.
    1)WHAT IMPACT IS COVID HAVING ACROSS THE HOLY LAND? At 7.30pm on Thursday 26 November. Peter Rand, FHL's Vice Chairman and Executive Trustee, is running a session on Zoom. He has visited the Holy Land on around 25 occasions in the last 10 years and is in regular contact the FHL Bethlehem office, the local FHL Committee and other partners including the Latin Patriarchate, the Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem and the Pontifical Mission. He would like to share with you and take questions on the reality of life with COVID for our Christian brothers and sisters in the West Bank, Gaza, Israel and Jordan, as we approach Christmas - a very different experience to ours in the UK.
    Please email Peter at peter.rand@friendsoftheholyland.org.uk and he will send you the link to access the meeting. If you are unable to make the meeting on 26 November, which is mainly for people in London, then you are very welcome to join one of other similar meetings on other days leading up to Christmas/ Here is the full list:
    *Thursday 26 November at 7.30pm - London
    *Monday 30 November at 7.30pm - Worcestershire
    *Wednesday 2 December at 7.00pm - Warwickshire
    *Thursday 3 December at 7.00pm - Yorkshire
    *Wednesday 9 December at 7.00pm - Oxfordshire
    *Monday 14 December at 7.00pm - Staffordshire
    *Tuesday 15 December at 7.00pm - South East
    *Thursday 17 December at 7.00pm - Channel Islands
    *Friday 18 December at 7.00pm - Shropshire
    The meeting will last around one hour and Peter will be pleased to take questions; hence a series of smaller meetings to allow more questions, rather than one national event.

    2)Also at 10am on Saturday 5 December, FHL are organizing a live cookery demonstration by zoom of a traditional Palestinian Christmas meal, prepared by the ladies at St. Martha's House, a Day Care Centre in Bethlehem, supported by FHL. Again, please email Peter who will send you the link.

    3) And finally, have a look at the link below for something a bit different - a series of guided tours and talks on the Holy Land - a virtual tour of the Holy Land, which started last weekend!
    https://www.iscglasgow.co.uk/adventpilgrimage.html?mc_cid=ecad34c21e&mc_eid=988555bc2d

    With all best wishes and prayers,

    God bless,

    Fr Richard:)
    Posted 26 Nov 2020, 02:28 by Our Lady of Fatima Church - White City London
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  • Parish Funds

    During these extraordinary times - Online payments are by far the safest way to donate to the parish at the moment. If you are able and would like to support the parish financially at this time, this is how you can do it:

    1) Bank Transfer - You could make a bank transfer payment to our parish bank account - The details are as follows:

    Account Name: WRCDT White City Account Number: 31264990 Sort Code: 40-05-20.

    Please add your surname and first name as a reference to help our book-keeper. If you are a taxpayer, it is a HUGE help to the parish if you can gift aid your donation, which increases it by 25%. The easiest way to do gift aid is to send an email to giftaid@rcdow.org.uk with the following info: The name of the parish (White City); your title, first name/surname; your address & postcode; the date of your gift, or start date of your standing order; the amount; please add the line: 'Please gift aid my donations'. The Diocese Gift Aid office will email you a confirmation.

    If you do not already give to the parish by Standing Order you might want to consider starting this. We can easily email you a form. Just let me know.

    2) Donating by Text – For those who don’t carry cash, please remember you can donate to our weekly collection on your mobile phone. Simply type: Parish (then space) then WHITE. Send it to 70800. Click send. £5 will be added to your mobile phone bill, which comes directly to the parish.

    3) Contactless Payments - The new parish contactless payment machine is normally at the back of the church (in the porch), however is presently unavailable during the current lockdown

    Thank you and God bless!

    Fr Richard

    Posted 13 Nov 2020, 07:49 by Our Lady of Fatima Church - White City London
  • Church opening times during the current lockdown
    Just to remind you that, although we are not able to celebrate Mass publicly until, God willing, Thursday 3rd December, we are allowed to open the church for private prayer. So, until Wednesday 2nd December, these are the times every week when the church will be open for adoration and private prayer:

    Sundays 3-5pm;
    Wednesdays 10am – 12noon; 5-6pm;
    Fridays 10am – 12noon;
    Saturdays: 10am - 12noon and 4-6pm.

    It will be lovely to see you if you are able to pop in and spend some time with the Lord. Either Fr Ephrem or myself will always be in the church when it is open, so if you would like to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation or just have a chat about anything, just come and catch our eye. A few people have also asked when the repository shop will be open – this will be Wednesdays 10.00-11am; Saturdays; 5-6pm and Sundays at 5pm, when either myself or Yvonne will be available – again just come and catch our eye. The repository, as every year, has lots of lovely Advent/Christmas candles/cards/calendars etc… all at very reasonable prices!
    Posted 13 Nov 2020, 07:45 by Our Lady of Fatima Church - White City London
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