Consecration of Russia and Ukraine

This coming Friday, 25th March, we will have a special Holy Hour from 11.00pm to midnight.  This will enable us to join Pope Francis at the very hour when, in Rome, he will solemnly consecrate Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, at the specific request of the Catholic Church in Ukraine.
Many of you know that, on the 13th October in 1917, Our Lady appeared to the three shepherd children of Fatima in the presence of tens of thousands of people, and said:

I come to request the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and for the faithful to receive Holy Communion on five consecutive First Saturdays in reparation for offences against God and my Immaculate Heart. 
   If they listen to my requests, Russia will be converted and there will be peace. If not, Russia will spread her errors through the world, provoking wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, and various nations will be annihilated.
   But in the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to Me, and it will be converted and a certain period of peace will be granted to the world.
   When you pray the Rosary, say after each Mystery, ‘O my Jesus, forgive us our sins.  Save us from the fires of Hell.  Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.’

Several Popes have attempted to fulfill Our Lady’s request – but, due to fear of offending Russia and upsetting the geopolitical landscape – have only obliquely referred to Russia.
But now Pope Francis will make the Consecration, and specifically name Russia.  After all, what do we have to lose now?  Vladimir Putin has chosen to violate the world order in such a grievous way that his entire country is now suffering the effects of being a pariah state.
At our Holy Hour, in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, we will pray the traditional Fifteen Mysteries of the Rosary (Joyful, Sorrowful, Glorious) as Our Lady requested, plus the Litany of the Saints.  Then, at midnight, we will together pray the Act of Consecration of Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  Following this, we will receive Our Lord’s Benediction in the Most Blessed Sacrament.
If you can, please join us in church.  I haven’t yet received the text for the Act of Consecration, but when I do, it will be posted on the parish website:  www.stpaulsmtlawley.com
This is the least we can do for the poor suffering people of Ukraine, and also for the Russian people who are being led by an autocratic tyrant.  May God deliver us all from this war and persecution, and grant us peace in His good time.

Weekend Mass attendance
Congratulations to all the families of our children who will receive the Sacraments of First Reconciliation, First Holy Communion and/or Confirmation this year.
You have been responding so beautifully to my request to rededicate yourselves to regular Mass attendance, and I am grateful.  Our church is full!  And I do appreciate your financial support of the parish as well – your contributions are helping us pay the bills.  Thank you!
And please don’t forget to support the Building Fund.  The more money we collect and save now, the less we’ll have to borrow from the bank when we begin construction.

In conclusion:
Thank you, everyone, for your ongoing support:  your attendance, your prayers, your contributions, your kind words of encouragement.  May God bless you for your goodness.

Fr Tim