“I was so moved. The atmosphere was warm and beautiful and without a doubt the Holy Spirit was among us…”
Parishioner at Sacred Heart Church in Hook.
You may have noticed on our website and Facebook Page that we’ve been making a big deal about National Prayer Weekend and the Special Mass at our Church on Friday 27th September. If you had attended the Mass then you already know how special the Mass was and that the Church was full to capacity and it could be said that there was an extra special atmosphere surrounding us all.
Do turn your sound up for the video below and take a look at some of the highlights with inspiring thoughts of prayer from Fr Paul and uplifting, moving sermons from Fr Liam and Fr Yamai from the Carmelite Priory at Boars Hill in Oxford.
The Mass kicked off with some beautiful entrance music selected by the core team, followed by our Dominican Nuns from the Convent leading us in the Rosary. Special illustrated Rosary cards had been given to all who attended the Mass but if you missed it, you may still find some at the porch in the Church.
During the first 30 minutes of Mass there was also the opportunity for the Sacrament of Reconciliation with with either Fr Paul or one of our guest priests.
It was truly moving to see so many people attending this beautiful Sacrament and sitting next to the Friars on the altar. It really was something special to witness.
The Mass proceeded with Fr Paul introducing all of our guest priests who were celebrating Mass with us. We were blessed to have two Carmelite Friars- Fr Liam and Fr Yamai, Fr Peter Codd who used to be Sacred Heart’s priest, and were also blessed to have Fr Kevin, a retired priest from the Convent next door who you may have met or seen before. It really was a full and very colourful house and indeed reminded Fr Paul of a rainbow which Fr Liam references in his sermon.
The readings and bidding prayers were read beautifully (as always) by Joseph and Michele’s son treated us to a beautiful rendition of Ave Maria accompanied by his mum Michele on the flute! (note to self – record more next time…).
You may have noticed from the photos and video that throughout the Church were pieces of art handpicked to inspire both thought, emotion and prayer. A selection of these are below but if you Google “Elizabeth Wang” – a favourite artist of Fr Paul – there you’ll find many more pieces with the stories that inspired them :-
“The Mass was beautiful, felt really holy as if the Holy Spirit was with us. We could feel the love and hope in the room and you came out of there feeling emotional but lifted.”
As you can see from the gallery below, Sacred Heart Church was beautifully decorated and as you entered the Church we had special music playing (one of which you can hear on the above video), art on the walls, banners around the altar and gorgeous flowers coordinating beautifully with the themes.
“The Mass was so beautiful I had to come back on Saturday with both my Mum and my Dad and find out if there was a recording…”
Parishioner at Sacred Heart Church
At the end of Mass we had 15-20 minutes of Benediction and Adoration of the Blessed Host which really was the perfect conclusion to the event. There was also another opportunity for the Sacrament of Reconciliation which countless people took advantage of.
If you’re following us on Facebook, you would have also noticed a number of thoughts and prayers have been leading us up to the event – here are 3 of our favourites but if you have any others do send them in.
You will also find some prayer cards left in to the porch of the Church which you’re welcome to take next time you visit.
If you have any thoughts, feedback, photos or video clips of the Mass then please do email them in to firstname.lastname@example.org or simply add a comment below, as we’d love to expand this post with wider stories and experiences.
It really was a very special evening and if you attended we hope you got as much out of it as we did. Sacred Heart Church and its community really is something special isn’t it?