We celebrate Christmas, we celebrate the sending of His Son into the world by God, when the days are shortest and darkest. It is written in the Gospel of St John: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it” (J 1. 4-5). In the middle of wintertime, God sends His Son to us to give us light, to give us hope and to show us the way to Salvation.
It may often seem that we are surrounded by darkness in the world, in our own town and also inside ourselves – both when it comes to the temptation to do evil and the darkness by which we seem to be surrounded in our suffering.
When the night seems to be at its deepest, God sends us His light – His Son who became man – into our darkness. God comes to us as a newborn child, and the light of salvation shines for us from this child in the crib. Jesus has come to redeem us. Redemption means freedom, it means salvation. This means that Jesus will make us free; and what will he make us free from? From the power of evil, from the darkness of sin.
The light is shining from the manger in Bethlehem, and lighting up our darkness, and the whole world’s darkness. Nobody can look at a new born baby without being moved. The child moves our hearts and awakens our love and our charity. When we see a child, we are filled with joy and hope for the future.
This is why God came to us as a child. Nobody can pass the crib in Bethlehem and stay unmoved by the sacred child in the manger. The child who is God and man draws us to himself and away from the darkness inside us, into His sacred light. He gives us hope in the midst of a world full of hopelessness. And this hope teaches us to see our goal to which we are moving to. Keeping our goal in God before us, we are able to find strength to go on the way towards this goal.
In the Prologue to St John’s Gospel, we read : “And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.” So many people do exactly this – they do not comprehend it. But further on it says: “That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.” The child in the crib, the Son of God, Jesus Christ. It was Him we received in Baptism, it is Him we profess in our faith and in our lives. “Him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light” (1Peter 2:9).
Hence we shall not be like the darkness which did not comprehend Him, but we shall open our hearts to Him, so that his light may illuminate us, kindling light in us so that we may be the light for others. God’s Son who became man for our salvation, the child in the crib, He is God’s gift to us. Let us accept Him and give Him to others in turn. I wish you all a blessed Christmas.
Your parish priest Dom Alois
REGISTRATION OF CATHOLICS. It is important for the Diocese of Oslo that all the Catholic faithful are registered. This is the only way we may keep in touch with our church members. It is also important for the sake of the financial situation of your parish, since we receive a subsidy from the state for those registered. All those registered since 2010 will receive a letter by ordinary mail. IT IS OF UTMOST IMPORTANCE THAT YOU ANSWER THIS LETTER . We ask those of you who have not yet registered, to do so at your earliest convenience. Share this message with others. You may find more information on:
Catechesis –about 430 children and youNG PEOPLE attend catechesis
128 children are preparing for their First Communions, 82 in Norwegian, 37 in Polish and 9 in Lithuanian. The First Communion Masses will be on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th of April .
Confirmation. This year we have three groups attending the two year course. From next year confirmation will be in the 9th grade, but this year it is in the 10th grade for the last time. The Confirmation sacrament will be given on Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st of May in Johanneskirke. 147 young people are expected to receive it.
We also have 47 children between 3 and 6 years of age attending the Good Shepherd Catechesis and about 30 attending junior and tweens groups .
This year’s Advent Action of NUK and Caritas Norge is supporting a project in Columbia. Altar boys and girls will collect money after each mass until Christmas.
The year of consecrated life: St Paul parish will pray for vocations throughout the year, every first Thursday of the month before the mass. Silent Adoration at 18.00- The first time Thursday 5th February 2015.
Sunday 4th January Epiphany. We are awaiting the arrival of the Three Kings during the mass at 11.00. Collection that Sunday is earmarked for the Children’s Missio.
Sunday 11th January. The three kings feast at St Paul School. Price 50 kr per child or 150 kr per family. Registration at the reception of the school right after the New Year.
KATOLSK FORUM – the first session will be on Tuesday 20th January at 19.45. Professor emeritus Sverre Bagge will hold a lecture about St Olav.
Week of prayer for Christian unity: ecumenical service at Marias Minde Thursday 22th January at 19.00.
PARISH FESTIVAL on the day of St Paul’s Conversion: Sunday 25th January. Welcome to Mass at 11.00 and afterwards to St Paul’s school’s gymnasium.
RETREAT in LENT with father Sigurd Markussen: Thursday 5th to Sunday 8th March 2015.
Sunday 7th June – Corpus Christi procession – mark the date on your calendar! –
Work on installing the new organ will begin 1st June 2015. Our church will be partly closed and on some Sunday we will be at Johanneskirken. Collecting money for the organ continues. Bank account no: 3624.27.59537
Want to give collection without cash: use a bank card terminal at the back of the church after 11.00 mass.
More information in «Menighetsbladet», and on the website: http://bergen.katolsk.no/
HOLY MASS in ST.PAUL CHURCH – CHRISTMAS 2014
Onsdag 24.12, Julaften 15.00 Familiemesse 17.00 Messe på vietnamesisk 18.00 Messe på Marias Minde 21.00 Messe på polsk 23.00 Midnattsmesse i St. Paul kirke
Torsdag 25.12, 1. juledag 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 11.00 Høymesse 13.00 Messe på tamilsk 15.00 Messe på polsk 16.15 Messe på vietnamesisk 18.00 Messe på engelsk 19.30 Messe på polsk
Fredag 26.12, 2. juledag, St. Stefanus 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 11.00 Norsk messe 17.00 Messe på tamilsk 19.00 Messe på vietnamesisk
Lørdag 27.12, St. Johannes/Den Hellige Families Fest 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 13.00 Messe på litauisk 18.00 Messe på filippinsk
Søndag 28.12, Den Hellige Families Fest 09.00 Messe 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 11.00 Høymesse 13.00 Messe på tamilsk 15.00 Messe på polsk 18.00 Messe på engelsk 19.30 Messe på polsk
Onsdag 31/12, Nyttårsaften 09.00 Messe på Marias Minde 18.00 Takkemesse for det gamle år på tamilsk
Torsdag 1.1 2015 Nyttårsdag/ Maria, Guds mor 09.00 Messe på vietnamesisk 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 11.00 Høymesse 13.00 Messe på tamilsk 15.00 Messe på polsk 18.00 Messe på engelsk
Søndag 4.1 2015 Epifani/Hellig tre kongers dag 09.00 Fromesse 10.00 Messe på Marias Minde 11.00 Høymesse 13.00 Messe på tamilsk 15.00 Messe på polsk 18.00 Messe på engelsk 19.30 Messe på polsk
VOSS, St. Olavs Senter Torsdag 25.12 2014 1. juledag 11.00 Høymesse Søndag 28.12 2014 Hl. Familie 11.00 Høymesse Torsdag 1.1 2015 Nyttårsdag 11.00 Høymesse Søndag 4.1 2015 Epifani 11.00 Høymesse
Alle messene er i St. Paul kirke hvis ikke det står noe annet