Dear parishioner

    Untitled Document

    Message No 91: 5th December 2021


    Baruch 5: 1-9; Psalm 125; Philippians 1: 4-6, 8-11; Luke 3: 1-6

    First Reading: Baruch, here making a rare appearance in the Lectionary, was probably written during the exile in Babylon. This Reading is a very poetic and prophetic message of consolation, foretelling the restoration of Jerusalem, the holy city.

    Psalm: this is the song of the exiles returned from Babylon. For us it foreshadows the song we shall sing when we return from our exile ’in this vale of tears’ to our true homeland,heaven.

    Second Reading:we prepare for the second coming ("the Day of Christ") by spreading the Good News, increasing in love for each other, and improving our knowledge (of the things of God), so as to become "pure and blameless".

    The Gospel for each year on this Sunday focuses on St John the Baptist. Notice how Luke firmly places John in both history (with the rather detailed dating) and in theology (with the reference to Isaiah 40: 3-5). St John the Baptist is the ’voice crying in the wilderness, preparing a way for the Lord’ predicted by Isaiah.

    Supply priests
    Welcome to Fr Bryan Wells, offering the 9:15am Mass at St Thomas’s, and to Canon Luke Smith (Fr Darren) offering the Mass at Otford and the 11:15am Mass at St Thomas’s.

    11:15am Mass
    The Traditional Choir leads the music today.

    Alan Edwards RIP
    Funeral Mass in St Thomas’s on Monday at 11:30am, followed by private Committal. The family would welcome parishioners’ attendance at the Mass.

    Evelyn Wyeth RIP
    Funeral Service at the Greatness Cemetery Chapel, followed by Burial, on Tuesday at 11:00am.

    Wednesday: Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary
    Our Lady under this title is a principal Patron of our Archdiocese. Holy Mass at 8:00am in St Thomas’s and 10:00am in Most Holy Trinity. Fr Peter will be available after the Mass at Otford to hear pre-Christmas Confessions; don’t be bashful, come and get rid of all your sin before celebrating the great Feast!

    Anne Hobbes RIP
    Funeral Service at the Thamesview Crematorium on Thursday.

    Next Sunday: West Kingsdown
    There will be a short congregational meeting after Mass next Sunday, to discuss music at the Sunday Mass. To facilitate this and to comply with COVID requirements (so people aren’t in the building too long) the Mass will be said (ie without music).

    Next Sunday: Advent Service of readings and carols at Otford
    This hour-long service at 7:00pm in Most Holy Trinity will be lead by the Music Group and is open to all parishioners, their families and friends.

    The Pilgrims: Carols & Readings for Advent
    All senior parishioners are invited to this short Service on Tuesday 14th December at 12:00 noon in St Thomas’s, followed by refreshments. Sign up in the Entrance if you can; if you need a lift phone 01732 450197.

    Repository in St Thomas’s
    The Repository has a selection of Advent and Christmas items, including Christmas cards. If no one is minding the Repository, please put money in the wall box marked ’Repository’.

    First Holy Communion/Reconciliation Programme 2022
    Registration is now open for the 2022 Programme. If your child is in Year 3 or above, please fill in the online Registration Form on the Parish website, where you will find more information. Applications close next Sunday.

    St Thomas’ School: new admissions 2022
    Registration for Reception Year entry 2022 opened on Friday and closes at midnight on Monday 17th January 2022. Parents/carers must apply online: go to the link book a tour of the school please contact or phone 01732 453921. You must also obtain a Supplementary Form from the school; email me to make an appointment to obtain the Parish Priest’s Reference.

    Newsletter back page pictures
    If parents of those who have made their first Holy Communion this year or those who were recently Confirmed would like their photo on the back page of the Sunday Newsletter, just email me or Magda the photo, with the name of the child.

    Red Missio boxes
    Most boxes have been collected in, but if you still have one please return it, with your name and address if you wish to have it back to refill it. Enquiries to the Sevenoaks co-ordinator Pat Harman (01732 453902). We are still needing a replacement as Parish co-ordinator for Peter Ringham.

    Parish Funeral Support
    We are starting a group of (mostly retired) parishioners, who can be available to assist with Funeral Masses. This would entail occasionally helping with tea/coffee beforehand, acting as welcomers, and supporting the Funeral Liturgy especially when family mourners are few. If you can volunteer to go on the list for this, please contact Pat Harman (01732 453902 or or Angela Brunning (465518 or

    Synodal process
    The Holy See has extended the consultation period for the Synodal process, and consequently the deadline for Parish submissions to the Diocese is now later.  Accordingly, anyone who wasn’t able to participate in the previous parish meetings advertised and who would like to participate is asked to contact David Cooper ( as soon as possible.  If there is demand we can arrange further meetings for the afternoons of 19th December and/or 9th January.  The questions for consideration can be found on the parish website, in the Newsletter for 14th November.

    Parish SVP
    The SVP is celebrating its 500th meeting in the parish on Thursday, 30 years of serving the needy, the elderly, the homeless, the unemployed, the sick, the housebound, 3 Indian villages and many Indian students, the Sudan and many others in need. Please celebrate with us by praying for our group and for the next 30 years of service. Many thanks for all the support you have always given us over the years.
    Kathie Gonzalez

    School Carol Services CANCELLED
    The advertised Carol Services at St Gregory’s Catholic School and at Trinity School have both been cancelled, because of the recent changes to COVID regulations in schools.

    Apprentice Chaplain vacancy
    Are you interested in becoming a school chaplain? Would you like to learn more about what being a school chaplain involves? Know someone who would? St Gregory’s Catholic School has a really exciting opportunity to join their team as an Apprentice Chaplain, exploring your own call and ministry while sharing the good news with staff and students.

    Application deadline 10th December, shortlisting 13th, interviews 15th. For more information visit

    Sevenoaks Foodbank (Loaves & Fishes)
    This year the Sevenoaks Foodbank is asking St Thomas’ to support their Christmas appeal with boxes of crackers and Christmas Cakes. The boxes should not contain more than 6 or 8 crackers. Thank you for your generosity.
    Isabelle Mercer

    Sevenoaks Climate Action Network
    Sevenoaks CAN was launched on 13th November. It was a highly successful meeting of people of all ages and a level of expertise united in a desire to support Sevenoaks and District in Climate action for the common good. Since the initial meeting hubs where info and resources for action may be found have been set up in areas such as energy, waste, housing, food, and education. After the Christmas rush, we’ll bring more news about how our Parish could become involved. Wishing everyone eco-friendly Christmas.
    Sandie Peters and Pat Harman

    ’Honouring Sunday’
    You can read the Bishops’ statement on returning to Mass on the Bishops’ Conference website:

    Another Newsletter blooper
    "Weight Watchers will meet at 7 PM at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double door at the side entrance."

    Please pray

    • for a closer appreciation of Christ’s presence with us;
    • for God’s help in ending the pandemic;
    • for the repose of the souls of Alan Edwards, Evelyn Wyeth, and Anne Hobbes.


    St Roch, pray for us.
    St Joseph, pray for us.
    St Thomas of Canterbury, pray for us.
    St Bernadette, pray for us.
    Fr. David.

    Fr David Gibbons, KHS, Parish Priest of Sevenoaks
    St Edith of Kemsing, pray for us.

    12 Granville
    Sevenoaks01732 454177
    TN13 1ER


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