See video Reflections from Fr Bernie at the bottom…

Sunday/Weekday Readings & Activities

5 April 2020 – Passion (Palm) Sunday

First Reading: Isaiah 50:4-7

The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens – wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught. The Lord God has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, I did not turn backwards. I gave my back to those who struck me, and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard; I did not hide my face from insult and spitting. The Lord God helps me; therefore I have not been disgraced; therefore I have set my face like flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame.

Second Reading: Philippians 2:6-11

Though he was in the form of God, Jesus did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death- even death on a cross. Therefore God also highly exalted him and gave him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Gospel: Matthew 26:14-27:66

Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, ‘What will you give me if I betray him to you?’ They paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he began to look for an opportunity to betray him.

On the first day of Unleavened Bread, when it was evening, Jesus took his place with the twelve; and while they were eating, he said, ‘Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me.’ And they became greatly distressed and began to say to him one after another, ‘Surely not I, Lord?’ He answered, ‘The one who has dipped his hand into the bowl with me will betray me. The Son of Man goes as it is written of him, but woe to that one by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been better for that one not to have been born.’ Judas, who betrayed him, said, ‘Surely not I, Rabbi?’ He replied, ‘You have said so.’

While they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread, and after blessing it he broke it, gave it to the disciples, and said, ‘Take, eat; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, and after giving thanks he gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for all for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you, I will never again drink of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.’

When they had sung the hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives. Then Jesus said to them, ‘You will all become deserters because of me this night;  But after I am raised up, I will go ahead of you to Galilee.’ Peter said to him, ‘Though all become deserters because of you, I will never desert you.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Truly I tell you, this very night, before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ Peter said to him, ‘Even though I must die with you, I will not deny you.’ And so said all the disciples.

Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane; and he said to his disciples, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray.’ He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and he said to them, ‘I am deeply grieved, even to death; remain here, and stay awake with me.’ And going a little farther, he threw himself on the ground and prayed, ‘My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet not what I want but what you want.’ Then he came to the disciples and found them sleeping; and he said to Peter, ‘So, could you not stay awake with me one hour? Stay awake and pray that you may not come into the time of trial; the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.’ Again he went away for the second time and prayed, ‘My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.’Again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy.So leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, ‘Are you still sleeping and taking your rest? See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Get up, let us be going. See, my betrayer is at hand.’

While he was still speaking, Judas, one of the twelve, arrived; with him was a large crowd with swords and clubs, from the chief priests and the elders of the people. At once he came up to Jesus and said, ‘Greetings, Rabbi!’ and kissed him. Jesus said to him, ‘Friend, do what you are here to do.’ Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and arrested him. Jesus said to the crowds, ‘Have you come out with swords and clubs to arrest me as though I were a bandit? Day after day I sat in the temple teaching, and you did not arrest me.  Then all the disciples deserted him and fled.

Those who had arrested Jesus took him to Caiaphas the high priest. But Peter was following him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest; and going inside, he sat with the guards. Now the chief priests and the whole council were looking for false testimony against Jesus so that they might put him to death, but they found none, though many false witnesses came forward. At last two came forward and said, ‘This fellow said, “I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.” ’ The high priest stood up and said, ‘Have you no answer? What is it that they testify against you?’ But Jesus was silent. Then the high priest said to him, ‘I put you under oath before the living God, tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God. Jesus said to him,

‘You have said so. But I tell you,
From now on you will see the Son of Man
   seated at the right hand of Power
   and coming on the clouds of heaven.’ 
Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, ‘He has blasphemed! Why do we still need witnesses? You have now heard his blasphemy. What is your verdict?’ They answered, ‘He deserves death.’ 

Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. A servant-girl came to him and said, ‘You also were with Jesus the Galilean.’ But he denied it before all of them, saying, ‘I do not know what you are talking about.’ When he went out to the porch, another servant-girl saw him, and she said to the bystanders, ‘This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.’ Again he denied it with an oath, ‘I do not know the man.’ After a little while the bystanders came up and said to Peter, ‘Certainly you are also one of them, for your accent betrays you.’ Then he began to curse, and he swore an oath, ‘I do not know the man!’ At that moment the cock crowed. Then Peter remembered what Jesus had said: ‘Before the cock crows, you will deny me three times.’ And he went out and wept bitterly.

When morning came, all the chief priests and the elders of the people conferred together against Jesus in order to bring about his death. They bound him, led him away, and handed him over to Pilate the governor.


Reflections from Fr Bernie

Easter Readings

Click here for Holy Week, Easter Triduum & Family Prayers Booklet

Good morning everyone,

For the next 3 days of Holy Week, I will be sending a link for you to use for your prayer. Fr John O’Connor, a wonderful spiritual friend/priest from New Zealand has recently started a daily reflection called Food For Faith. I have been using his reflections most days of Lent for my own prayer. John is currently the Spiritual Director at the National Seminary (Holy Cross Seminary) in Auckland, New Zealand. For the next few days of Holy Week, John is encouraging his readers to use the beautiful form of prayer called Lectio Divina. He explains this in his introduction, and then there is a podcast of John leading the Lectio Divina using the Gospel of each day. As John says in his introduction, apart from the device you will need to listen to his reflection, turn all other devices off, find a quiet place at home, either on your own or with your family and take 20 minutes to pray. You may wish to use this prayer in the morning and then the prayer I have created in the Holy Week booklets for your Evening Prayer. (Remember the booklet of prayers I have created are available at our parish Marian Grotto or also there is a pdf version of the prayers above).  So here is the website to lead you in prayer today. Let me know what you think!

Fr Bernie

Monday – Food for Faith Reflections
Tuesday – Food for Faith Reflections


Weekday Readings

For the weekday readings, please click below:

Weekly Readings: 23 March 2020
Weekly Reading: 30 March 2020
Weekly Reading: 6 April 2020


Activities for the Kids

Some amazing websites:

https://thekidsbulletin.com/
http://catholicmom.com/kids/
https://sermons4kids.com/

Activities and videos for the kids to do at home:

5th Sunday of Lent – ©Sermon4Kids
Palm Sunday – ©Sermons4Kids
Palm Sunday – ©Kid’s Liturgy
Easter Sunday – ©Sermons4Kids


Where Is God in a Pandemic?

Please click on the image for a great article by James Martin, recommended from Fr Bernie to read during these times…

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