How are the Christmas celebrations going for you? I am aware there has been much sadness and disappointment in not being able to see loved ones. I hope that the beauty and joy of this season can sustain you as we transition to the new year.
Yesterday we celebrated the Feast of the Holy Family and our Archbishop, John Wilson, gave us a letter to be read at all Masses. In it, he thanked all families for their faithfulness to Christ. He named not only mums and dads but grandparents, aunts and uncles, for passing on the faith to their children, grandchildren, nephews and nieces. He also said “Please make sure that our communities are welcoming and supportive to all families, not least those new to our country or area, those going through brokenness or separation, and those facing poverty and hardship.”
Recently I found a photo of my own family when we had a caravan holiday at Seasalter, near Whitstable some 60 years ago. It is one of the few photos with all five of us. I have very happy memories of that week away. Besides my brother and sister who now live in Cornwall, my family are all those who are part of St Thomas of Canterbury parish. It is heartening to see the care and concern that people here show one another. I pray that we have the grace to grow in love for one another and welcome the stranger, the poor and all those who experiencing isolation.