The celebration of Christmas at St Pat’s this year was unlike any other year. With a spate of new outbreaks of coronavirus in Greater Sydney further restrictions were imposed by the government. At first, we had been able to allow 100 people in the church to each Mass, but suddenly the rules reverted to the 4 square metre distancing rule and only 50 were permitted, all signing in with the State Government’s QR code for tracking purposes. Instead of holy water, we have already become accustomed to using hand sanitiser as we enter and exit the church. Fortunately we are not part of the Northern Beaches area where Christmas Masses were confined to being on line this year.

Father Tom and the Liturgy Ministry planned for two outdoor Carol Services and seven Masses and all were wonderful events, celebrating Christmas in its true meaning.  As we entered the Narthex, we saw the Nativity scene in the middle window offset on either side by Christmas trees. One Christmas tree was composed of the colourful messages of the children: faith, hope, love, peace and joy. There was also a special handmade, beautifully crafted nativity scene on loan to the parish. Visually, our eyes feasted. Unable to sing, we were able to listen to the carols sung by the talented musicians who helped us pray with music and created a festive spirit.

 

At Midnight Mass, Father Tom blessed the new Memorial Plaque to commemorate our 125th anniversary. This new plaque will be placed over the original foundation stone which has decayed over time.

Thank you to Father Tom and everyone who made Christmas 2020 so beautiful and meaningful during such difficult times.

Photos of St Pat’s special Christmas can be viewed in the Photo Gallery.

 

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Maureen Casey

Parishioner Member of the Communication Ministry