In many ways this long ‘retreat’ is passing quickly. Last Sunday was Laetare Sunday,coinciding with Mothering Sunday, which brought some light to the gloom I had earlier complained about. Here it meant we sang the wonderful hymn, O Mother Blest, and could celebrate all our mothers too: a short time of rejoicing in our period of solemn reflection.

Yesterday, the 5th Sunday of Lent brought us closer to Palm Sunday and Passion Week . The Gospel readings for the last 2 Sundays have been most significant, highlighting 2 ‘miracles’ which demand our attention. I particularly empathised with the message of Jesus giving the gift of sight to a blind man, as I have recently experienced the technological process of cataract removal which now means I can see better than I have for the last 40 years. Some of my fellow parishioners probably feel the same. Every day there are small miracles to see. If only I could see so well on the spiritual level!

Then we had the raising of Lazarus from the dead, a remarkable story which gives us hope for the future and indicates the way forward for those who believe and follow Christ’s example. I am the Resurrection and the Life. We have clear guidance as to whom we should follow and to where our priorities lie, but the human condition  and the distractions of our daily lives often make it difficult to remain on the right path. Let us hope that we have fair weather on Palm Sunday so that we can briefly display our faith on the streets of Bournemouth as we process from the Sacristy Gardens up the hill to our splendid church of the Sacred Heart.

I ask as many of you as possible to gather at 1015 so that we can demonstrate our beliefs together: ‘Say Yes to God’.



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