Sunday 7 May 2023

Fifth Sunday of Easter

Sunday Gospel: Some say that if you gather four women in the kitchen, you will hear about five correct ways to set the table and prepare the food. Parents teach us the correct way to do it. That’s the most natural thing in the world. Whether we’re speaking of family, a culture or a faith tradition, we develop the “expected ways” to do things so that everyone can feel comfortable and know what to expect. That works just fine for a closed society. But when you gather five cooks or a multicultural group, one custom bumps up against another and causes conflicts that will either separate or transform the community. The one thing certain: They won’t remain the same. That reflects today’s story from the Acts of the Apostles. The Jewish members of the Christian community in Jerusalem were diverse to the extent that they identified as Hebrews or Hellenists. The Hellenists’ ancestors had been in the diaspora and spoke Greek — the original language of the books of the New Testament. The Hebrews were Palestinian Jews who spoke Aramaic. Language was symbolic of the many cultural differences among them. Tensions came to a head when Hellenist widows felt slighted in the “daily distribution,” a phrase that could refer to food given them or to their ministerial assignments. In order to find a solution, the leaders held what we could call a synod; they gathered the community to decide together how to resolve the problem. This synod could be considered a precursor to the greater synod or council they held to decide what would be required of Gentile converts to the faith (Acts 15).  

Today’s Gospel and second reading address situations of tension in the midst of diversity, showing how it can lead to something new and deeper than any of the participants would have imagined. In Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis reminds us, “When conflicts are not resolved but kept hidden … silence can lead to complicity in grave misdeeds and sins. Authentic reconciliation does not flee from conflict, but is achieved in conflict, resolving it through dialogue and open, honest and patient negotiation.” (Sr. Mary M. McGlone serves on the congregational leadership team of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet) 

Weekend Masses Church of the Holy Spirit Vigil Mass 5pm. Sunday St Matthias’ 10am, St Teresa’s 12noon.  

Weekday Masses St Matthias’ Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 10am. St Teresa’s Friday 10am, Saturday St Teresa’s 10am

Confessions Before Saturday Vigil Mass and on request. 

To book a wedding or baptism, please contact the parish office (better to email). 

Recently Deceased Martha Mallon, Liam Robinson. 

Months Mind Hannah Magill, Miles Ritchie Keena. 

Anniversaries Gerard & Richard McIlroy, Jim (Maxie) McDonnell, Sadie Morgan, 1st Canon Robert Fullerton. 

Candles Burning Jim (Mixie) Mc Donald. 

Weekly Offertory £1,346. Thank you. 

Catholics in the Holy Land £616. Thank you. 

Cemetery Sunday in Belfast Cemeteries: 

Milltown Cemetery          Sunday 7 May at 3.00pm  

City Cemetery                                 Sunday 14 May at 3.00pm 

Hannahstown Cemetery                  Sunday 28 May at 3.00pm 

Tullyrusk Cemetery                        Sunday 4 June at 1.30pm 

St Peter’s the Rock Cemetery         Sunday 4 June at 3.00pm 

Take The Risk for Christ 2023-2024 – Year for Vocation to the Diocesan Priesthood. For further information contact National Vocations Office: Fr Conor McGrath PP. Email: 

The Dioceses of Derry and Clogher have a small number of places left on their World Youth Day Pilgrimage in August and have asked us to circulate details to our parishes. 

Further information can be obtained directly from Lizzie Rea in the Derry Diocese. If interested Email Lizzie Rea on: A non-refundable deposit of €250 will secure your place. 

St Gerard’s church will be hosting their annual Novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help from Monday 15th May 2023 to Tuesday 23rd May 2023 at 9.30 am and 7.30 pm. All are welcome. 

A Holy Rosary will be recited on May 13th, the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima at St Mary’s Grotto Chapel Lane Belfast at 4.00 pm. The special intention is for the Protection of Life and the Renewal of the Holy Catholic Faith in Ireland. For information, please call Precious Life on 07592280522. 

Mary’s Meals – Pray in May – During May, the month dedicated to Our Lady, Mary’s Meals invites you to pray for its life-changing work, carried out in her name. We currently provide nutritious daily school meals to 2.4 million children in 18 of the world’s poorest countries. These meals bring children into the classroom, where they can gain an education and hope of a better future. Could you commit to praying each day of May for the children receiving Mary’s Meals, the volunteers and all who support this work and those children still waiting? Further information and prayer resources for individuals, groups and schools can be found at 


Our Lady of Fatima – Rosary Rally- will be held at the Grotto of Our Lady of Mercy, in the car park of St Oliver Plunkett Church at 4pm-5pm on Saturday 13 May 2023. All are welcome to come and pray to Our Lady of Fatima. 

Bethany Group Contact number 0799 0381248 

St Vincent De Paul Helpline No. 0741 9326678  

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