We began the “With You Always” preparation journey in both parishes earlier on this year, with a view to the children of our parish receiving their First Holy Communion in June 2020. Unfortunately, on the 23rd March, the country went into lockdown, and we have been in that position ever since. This has meant the introduction of tightened social distancing, as well as the closure of all non-essential buildings, including all Churches with their related sacramental programs.
The ongoing lockdown has had a very profound knock-on effect to the parish life within our communities, including the preparation and reception of Holy Communion for 2020. I have had to make a difficult decision regarding the reception of First Holy Communion.
Due to the uncertain future at the moment; the unknown timescale of the lockdown, and the continuing social distance measures that will probably still be in effect after the lockdown, the receiving of First Holy Communion for all Year 4 children within our parishes in June 2020 be deferred until 2021. This means that there will be no First Holy Communion Masses taking place this year. I know this news is sad and disappointing, but I do hope you understand the reasons why I have made this difficult decision. Hopefully, in September, we will be able to re-start the “With You Always” preparation course for Holy Communion, with a view for the First Holy Communion Masses taking place in Spring 2021.
I will be in touch in the new school year to let you know the updated timeframe and how the preparation course will take shape. Please do keep safe, and I hope to see you all soon.
Fr. Liam Collister (Parish Priest)