26/8/12 – Liturgy Committee Report

Liturgy Committee, Our Lady of Mount Carmel WentworthvilleThe Liturgy Committee met this week.  The first matter the committee considered was last month’s celebration of the Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.  There were many positive aspects to the celebration of the Parish Feast Day.  We wish to continue with the practice of welcoming new parishioners on this special occasion, with improvements to be made with having new parishioners register with the parish office throughout the year.  The lunch remains a positive social occasion for the parish, but we hope that in the future, more can be done to include children, as well as a broader range of parishioners.

Fr Paul and the Liturgy Committee formally thank all those who contributed to the preparation and celebration of the day.

The second matter discussed at the meeting was the celebration of the Liturgy of the Word for Children at Sunday Mass.  This is a worthwhile and long-standing practice here in Wentworthville, which has been supported by hard-working, dedicated volunteers.  As it does with all aspects of the liturgy from time to time, the committee revisited for its own benefit the intended purpose and structure of the Liturgy of the Word for Children.  Reading material was distributed prior to the meeting to assist with our own learning and formation.  The committee then revisited and proposed revisions to the parish guidelines for these celebrations, which were first developed in 2006.  A draft of these revised guidelines will be prepared for consideration at the next meeting.  Once they are finalised, the committee will then consider how best to support and assist Ministers of Children’s Liturgy of the Word through formation, training and resources.

Parishioners are welcome to raise matters with the Liturgy Committee at any time by emailing litcomwenty (at) gmail (dot) com, or by speaking to Fr Paul or any member of the committee.  If you are corresponding in writing, please ensure your correspondence is signed and return contact details are provided, so that we can respond appropriately.

Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Today our parish celebrated the solemnity of its patron, Our Lady of Mount Carmel. This is not only the feast of our parish patron, but also the principal feast of the Carmelite Friars who live in community here and minister to the parish.

The actual date for Our Lady of Mount Carmel is 16 July. This date is associated with the story of Mary appearing to Carmelite Friar St. Simon Stock (also here), and entrusting him with the brown scapular. An optional memorial in the general calendar, it ranks as a solemnity in Wentworthville (as does the feast of the Patron in any parish) and in the Carmelite Order.

Those who participate in a Mass for the solemnity in a Carmelite parish may find that the texts vary even from those provided in the Sacramentary and Lectionary for the optional memorial. This is because the Order has prepared its own missal for the feasts particular to its own liturgical calendar. It contains readings and prayers for the Carmelite saints, including the prophet Elijah, who is a central figure in Carmelite spirituality and an inspiration to the Order. The readings in the Carmelite Lectionary for the solemnity are:

Gospel: John 19:25-27
First Reading: 1 Kings 18:42-45
Second Reading: Galatians 4:4-7

The principal Mass was celebrated today at 10:30 a.m. The principal celebrant was our own Fr. Paul Sireh OCarm, and concelebrated by Fr John Powell OCarm, and Fr Peter, a diocesan priest from Papua New Guinea who is currently visiting Wenty. Many people gave positive comments after the Mass and appreciated the reverent and solemn manner in which all participated.

Thank you to everyone who contributed to today’s celebrations.

13/7/08 – OLMC & WYD

My greetings to you on this weekend when we celebrate our parish’s patronal feast.  While this week in July is always a significant one for our parish, there seems to have been plenty of additional reasons to celebrate in recent years.  This year, it’s the celebration of World Youth Day 2008.

Today we begin our journey into WYD08 by blessing the pilgrims from our own parish during the 9:00 a.m. Mass.  The prayer, drawn from the Church’s Book of Blessings, asks that God remain with our pilgrims, shelter and guide them, and bless them with safe travel.

Our other most significant liturgical celebration for our Parish Feast Day and WYD week is our Prayer Around the Cross on Wednesday 16 July from 6:00 p.m.  Drawing on the prayer and music styles of the Taizé community, this is a wonderful opportunity for us to share in celebrating the Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel with members of the Carmelite Family from around the world, as well as other WYD pilgrims.  We want to fill the Church!  So make sure you join us.  The way our community gathers for reconciliation during Lent and Advent is proof of what we can achieve.  Don’t forget that a BBQ follows around the parish hall.

Although it hasn’t even happened yet, this single celebration is already having a profound effect for our community.  I had the pleasure of joining a good number of parish singers on Monday night for a rehearsal with Fr. Paul Gurr.  The spirit of the occasion and the sound of the song will very much transform us as we pray.  I thank them and Fr. Paul in advance for their remarkable ministry.

Share in Wenty’s World Youth Day experience. Follow personal reflections, photos and more on the brand new Parish WYD Blog, wydwenty.wordpress.com

8/7/07 – Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel


Next weekend, our parish celebrates its feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Although the actual date in the Universal Calendar is 16 July, in Carmelite parishes it is common to observe the solemnity on the nearest Sunday.

Furthermore, as a Carmelite parish, we use a special Carmelite Lectionary and Sacramentary which contains readings and prayers selected by the order for the celebration of feasts particular to its own calendar (the feast days of Carmelite saints, etc.).

As such, the readings we will hear on the parish feast day are specific to the celebration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Carmelite parishes, namely John 19:25-27, 1 Kings 18:42-45, and Galatians 4:4-7. One unique aspect to the readings from the Carmelite Lectionary for this feast is their reference to the prophet Elijah, who we know is a key figure in Carmelite spirituality, and served as inspiration to the early hermits who lived on Mount Carmel in the twelfth century.

From the choice of prayers, those we will use this year will be the same as last year; focussing more specifically on the Carmelite order. Last year these were chosen as we celebrated fifty years of Carmelite ministry in Wentworthville. We will use them again this year as the Carmelites celebrate another milestone.

This year our feast day celebrations will centre on this year’s 800th anniversary of the foundation of the Carmelites; that is, since they were given a rule of life by St. Albert, Patriarch of Jerusalem. As we know, the Carmelites did not have a particular founder like other orders such as the Benedictines, Dominicans and Franciscans. Consequently, this granting of the rule by St. Albert truly marks the formal beginnings of the Brothers of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel.

Next Sunday’s liturgy will reflect this universal Carmelite celebration. Also, our parish community will present our Carmelite community with a framed copy of its rule for permanent display in the priory.

In the meantime, those who wish to learn more about the Carmelites can do so at the Carmelite Order’s website, http://www.ocarm.org. The full text of the rule can be found at http://www.ocarm.org/eng/regoleng.htm