This evening the 40 Hours devotion (sometimes known by its Latin title, 'Quarant'ore') came to an end.
It has been a truly beautiful time of prayer for the whole parish. The forty hours of prayer before Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament were spread over four days, and the unity and diversity of the parish have been shown during this time. Many of the groups that make up parish life have taken part in organising some time of prayer: the Anointed youth group, our primary school, mums and toddlers, the NeoCatechumenal Way, and other members of the parish have helped to lead times of prayer.
We have seen the variety of spirituality in the parish: 'traditional' holy hours, the Liturgy of the Hours, the Rosary, Praise and Worship from the Catholic Charismatic Renewal and so on, but with most of the time simply set aside for silent prayer in front of Jesus. All this diversity, but all before the one Lord: He is the one who guarantees our unity - He calls us into communion with Him and - through Him - with one another.
There is no doubt that this time of prayer will bring many blessings to the parish and to all who have taken part. We thank God for this beautiful time of prayer, and ask Him to continue to bless our parish in the time ahead. And a little bonus: today, 16 July, is also the day on which St Clare was born (in 1193/4) - so happy birthday to our patron too!