Tuesday, 11 August 2020

The Solemnity of the Assumption Of The Blessed Virgin Mary 15th August, 2020. (episode: 246 )

The Solemnity of the Assumption Of The Blessed Virgin Mary

15th August 2020.

(episode: 246 )



FIRST READING: Revelation 11:19; 12:1-6, 10

Psalm: Ps 44:10-12, 16. "The queen stands at your right hand, arrayed in gold."

SECOND READING: 1 Corinthians 15:20-26

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION, (Alleluia, alleluia! Mary is taken up to heaven, and the angels of God shout for joy. Alleluia!).

GOSPEL: Luke 1:39-56


Image Credit: Shutterstock Licensed ID: 1465479995. RIVA DEL GARDA, ITALY - JUNE 13, 2019: The painting Assumption in church Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta by Giuseppe Craffonara (1830).photo by Renata Sedmakova


To listen to an audio recording of the readings, prayers and reflections for this feast, please click this link here: https://soundcloud.com/user-633212303/faith-hope-and-love-the-assumption-of-the-blessed-virgin-mary-15th-august-episode-246/s-otAg3VWrYA9  



In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

{{Good wishes to you all.}}

On this special (Solemnity of)
The Assumption Of Mary (The Feast Of The Assumption Of The

Brothers and sisters, let us acknowledge our sins and so prepare ourselves to celebrate the sacred mysteries.

Lord Jesus, you glorified your mother; the ark of God. Lord have mercy.

You raised mary, body and soul, into heavenly glory. Christ have mercy.

Mary's assumption is the firstfruits of the victory you won for the human race. Lord have mercy.


May almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us our sins, and bring us to everlasting life. Amen.

PREFACE: Glory of Mary assumed into heaven (solemnity)
Euch.Prayer: 3


Memorial Acclamation
1. We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your Resurrection until you come again.

{thanks everyone. And may God sustain you with his grace and love.}


Go in peace


Prologue:  This feast originated in Jerusalem before the fifth century as the "Falling-Asleep of the Mother of God." It was adopted in Rome in the mid-seventh century and was renamed the "Assumption" in the eighth century. It celebrates Mary's passing over, body and soul, from this world into the glory of her risen Son. The foretaste and forerunner of what will be the reward of all the faithful at the fullness of the resurrection on the last day.



Mary is an ideal example of someone who cooperated with God's plans… and as a result, allowed God to do great things through her life and actions….//  .   and Look at the wonders the Holy Spirit of God can achieve when we are open to God's plan in our lives….


Look at the incredible grace, love and fruit that is produced from saying "YES" to what God wants to achieve through us in the world…..


Mary stands as a wonderful inspiration of human faithfulness, obedience, respect and humility….   Mary's yes, allowed her to become a willing part of God's plan in the world….. 


let us never say,   "what can I contribute….   what good is what I have to give, compared with the enormity of the needs, the challenges… and the demands of this world…."  rather…. like Mary, may we be further inspired to say… yes, Lord…..    you are great and good…… you can achieve all things (and a significant part of what God achieves, is also "in and through" the people God has invited to cooperate in God's work……….  


Mary is like…. (we are all like)    a writing instrument in the hand of our most artistic God……    if we allow ourselves to be the channel through which God's good news, love, justice and forgiveness is experienced…


"Wouldn't it be great to be a clear mirror of the graciousness, peace and love of Christ….   whenever we do act or speak in ways that allow Jesus' message to flow through us, it is an enormous source of blessing and good…..      Sadly sometimes, because we experience limitations, weakness and fragility…. we can block that graciousness and our actions and values can block the healing, the care and the compassion that God is trying to create in and through us…..  


Let us pray that Jesus will show us how to allow ourselves to be more and more the light of Christ to each other and to all….


May Mary, who shows us an openness and generosity to God….. and pre-figures the destiny of all who hope in Jesus' promises, continue to inspire us to make a difference….  and say "yes" to God's values in all we do, (at home, at work, in the classrooms and workplaces..  in formal and social situations, and in the community….)


Blessed Virgin Mary, Assumed body and soul into heaven, pray for us, that we may be made worthy of the sure promises of Christ.



Fr Paul W. Kelly

Image Credit: Shutterstock Licensed ID: 1465479995. RIVA DEL GARDA, ITALY - JUNE 13, 2019: The painting Assumption in church Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta by Giuseppe Craffonara (1830).photo by Renata Sedmakova
Archive of homilies and reflections: http://homilycatholic.blogspot.com.au
To contact Fr. Paul, please email:
Archive of homilies and reflections: http://homilycatholic.blogspot.com.au
To contact Fr. Paul, please email:

To listen to my weekly homily audio podcast, please click this link here.
NB - It is often a week or so Ahead:

You are welcome to subscribe to Fr Paul's homily mail-out by sending an email to this address:

Further information relating to the audio productions linked to this Blog:
"Faith, Hope and Love - Christian worship and reflection" - Led by Rev Paul Kelly

Prayers and chants — Roman Missal, 3rd edition, © 2010, The International Commission on English in the liturgy. (ICEL)

Scriptures - New Revised Standard Version: © 1989, and 2009 by the NCC-USA. (National Council of Churches of Christ - USA)

"The Psalms" ©1963, 2009, The Grail - Collins publishers.

Prayers of the Faithful - " Together we pray" by Robert Borg'. E.J. Dwyer, Publishers, (1993) . (Sydney Australia).

Sung "Mass In Honour of St. Ralph Sherwin" - By Jeffrey M. Ostrowski. The Gloria. Copyright © 2011 ccwatershed.org.

- "Faith, Hope and Love" theme hymn - in memory of William John Kelly - Inspired by 1 Corinthians 13:1-13. Music by Paul W. Kelly. Arranged and sung, with additional lyrics by Stefan Kelk. 2019.

- "Today I Arise" - For Trisha J Kelly. Original words and music by Paul W. Kelly. Inspired by St Patrick's Prayer. Arranged and sung, with additional lyrics by Stefan Kelk. 2019.

[ Production - KER - 2020]

May God bless and keep you.


Friday, 7 August 2020

E-Newsletter. Sunday, August 9, 2020. Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year A


Parish Office: (07) 5572 5433  (9am – 12pm Mon-Fri).

Masses via pre-bookings. See below.

Limited access to Churches, Parish Office/buildings due to COVID restrictions.

Email: surfers@bne.catholic.net.au  

Mass Times number:  (07) 5595 8466 

Emergencies: Priest contactable via office phone (after hours, follow menu prompts)

Website: www.surfersparadiseparish.com.au 

50 Fairway Drive, Clear Island Waters, Queensland, 4226


Sunday, August 9, 2020

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year A

Readings for Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year A 

FIRST READING: 1 Kings 19:9a, 11-13a|

Ps: Psalm 85:9ab+10, 11-12, 13-14 “Lord, show us your mercy and love, and grant us your salvation.”

SECOND READING: Romans 9:1-5

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION (cf. Psalm 130:5): Alleluia, alleluia! I hope in the Lord. I trust in his Word.

GOSPEL: Matthew 14:22-33

“Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” (Matthew 14:27)

Shutterstock licensed image stock photo ID: 1211556307. Biblical vector illustration series, Jesus calms the storm. Peace Be Still. By rudall30  


“We know where we can find you when we need you.”

This was the rather confronting, but not unusual, response from a person who tracked me down, and was requesting a funeral service for a family member, and whom I had not seen since the last family funeral I had celebrated some years before. It caught me a little off guard, and I immediately started to compare myself with Bunnings, the place I go only when I need something like a cup hook or a light bulb. I don’t mind going there, but it’s not a regular part of my life, except when I need something I can’t get elsewhere. Essentially, if I don’t need anything, I don’t go there. Is that what we had become for this person, open only when needed.

The more I thought about it, I realised that for many people, certainly not all, Church and its associated resources i.e. priests, have become an “as needed” commodity in a world that has such a highly tuned service approach to the customer; that Church and its related services are no longer an ‘every week’ experience, but there as a comforting security if, and when, they are needed.

This, of course, is a major change in mindset for many people, particularly those who were brought up with Sunday Mass being a mixture of religious obligation, family tradition and social connection. This was especially so for those lucky enough to have brought up in the country. Where else would you go to meet up when shops were closed, hotels had reduced hours of opening, and family news needed to be shared. When you knew just about everyone in town, Church was seen as a hub of connectivity. Besides, how would you explain your absence from Church if everyone knew you hadn’t left town for the weekend. I expect that has changed somewhat over the years even in the country, but noticing an absent parishioner is not a city thing these days, if it ever was. What used to be a ‘day of rest’ is now a day to get the rest of the tasks done. A day to be filled up with fun, food, family functions and let’s now forget that trip to the shops for essentials.

I get the impression that attending Church on a Sunday in recent times is a spur of the moment thing for many, particularly if you wake up early and find that you hadn’t made other plans. “Why not?” is a more common response, rather than “Well it’s that time of the week again. Better get ready”. Or “Dear Granny has died. What was the name of the Church she used to live near?” Perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised, given that word-of-mouth family network communication has been replaced by a range of choices that assault people every day. It’s not really that they don’t want to be in Church, but how do you do Mass and participate in every other important Sunday offering as well. Where are you able to get the best bang for your hard-earned buck? 

Maybe this is what Pope Francis was thinking about when he suggested that priests should “get out among the flock and smell the sheep”. An interesting concept from the pontiff that made us all sit and wonder what he was getting at. Find out how families manage their busy lives and make being a part of a faith community more convenient, without compromising the purpose for being there. What have we got to say to the people of the day if we don’t hear and see their lives first?

Like it or not, practice of faith has to stand beside other competing attractions, and, let’s face it, Churches are not the best advertisers of their relevance to the community. We would baulk at a glitzy neon sign advertising Saint Altar-rails or flinch at the thought of paying mega dollars for a radio or television advertisement, yet that is how the word gets around these days. People get drawn to the sparkle and glitter, and until we find a softer way of delivering the message there is no point in fighting it. And mostly it’s about getting the message out there. No one goes to a restaurant without a name telling you where they are and what they are able to offer. How does anyone know you’re there unless you tell them, loudly?

Again, back to the olden days, when no Church I knew ever advertised its mass times in the newspaper or had a website or was found on Google Search. If mass times aren’t easy to find or the Church easy to locate, or parking is plentiful then why bother? As much as I might rail against the standards of the commercial world, it’s where people live and work, so why would we think all that can be put on hold when it comes to putting faith in God back into the scope of the modern consumer.

So perhaps I should be grateful that people know where we are when they need us, or maybe they should be grateful that we are still here for them when they need us. At least we haven’t gone out of business, yet.

Fr Peter Dillon PP.


A parish family wrote to us after last weekend following Fr Peter’s editorial, and they shared an extraordinary experience of God’s grace. They kindly gave permission to share this.

“Concerning Fr. Peter’s article on kindness. We were In Anaheim many years ago when my eldest son, who was then 8 years old, jumped into a jacuzzi which was out of order, consequently the water was boiling. Unfortunately there was no sign.

An African-American lady reached in and dragged him out. To do this she had to place her feet in the water. Had it not been for Grace’s timely intervention, the injuries to my son would have been far worse than the 1st , 2nd and 3rd  degree burns he received from the waist down.

I have never forgotten Grace’s kindness, indeed some years after my sons’ accident we were back to Los Angeles so we took her out to dinner at a famous hotel.

The staff at the hotel were not too pleased when we turned up with Grace and her partner. Firstly they asked us if we could afford the meals. When we said yes they took us to a table in the back of the restaurant, insulted us and even poured a drink over Grace.

The irony was there were a lot of people sitting around the pool that day when our son was injured; they all knew the pool was out of order but it was only Grace who risked personal injury to herself when she  reached in and dragged him out. 

Kindest Regards.” 

Parishioners name supplied.

God bless Grace, and our parishioners and thanks be to God for the self-giving kindness, sacrifice and love of all who cooperate in God’s love. 

Image: Shutterstock licensed stock vector ID: 152948285. Hand in hand illustration. By Duda Vasilii


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Our faith sustains us through challenging times. Now, more than ever, your support is needed to help our Parish to continue valuable pastoral activities and to provide ongoing sustainability. To assist you to support the Parish during this time of isolation, you can give via http://parishgiving.brisbanecatholic.org.au

We will continue to serve you through online resources and webcasts. If you are able to continue to support us, we would be most grateful.  For all those who have been making payments via credit card and those who have donated directly into the parish account, we thank you. The spirit of generosity is alive in our parish. If you would like confirmation of your donation or a  receipt emailed to you please contact  me at manager.surfers@bne.catholic.net.au                                        Yours faithfully, Sonya Slater, Parish Manager


The Planned Giving Envelopes are now available at the Sacred Heart Church, Stella Maris Church and St Vincent’s Church before and after the scheduled masses. Bookings for masses are still necessary. The parish office can also give you your envelopes between 9 am and 12 noon, Monday to Friday.  We only have envelopes for those who requested them, or those who previously requested them. People who direct debit will not have envelopes. Receipts for anyone who direct debits will be available at the parish office between 9 am and 12 noon, Monday to Friday.

STEWARDSHIP REFLECTION:  August 9, 2020  19th Sunday in Ordinary Time


“He said, “Come.” Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.” (Matthew 14:29) When you hear Jesus calling, do you respond immediately and trust that He knows what He’s doing? If so, you are walking on water! When we say “yes” to Jesus, we feel the power of His presence in our lives. We can feel the freedom it gives us! Listen to how Jesus is calling you to live the extraordinary life He has intended for you.


The vision of Stewardship speaks in every aspect of life, inviting everyone to be thankful, generous and accountable for what each has been given.


At St Vincent’s Church many volunteers have offered to help before Mass with welcoming, marking attendance sheets and sanitising everyone’s hands, ushering people to their seats and  after Mass they are again helping to sanitise hands, clean pews, toilets, door handles and everything that could have possibly been touched. 


This week, Eileen who will be looking after the 8am Religious Goods Shop sales and Julianne who will be looking after the 10am Religious Goods Shop sales spent many hours washing, cleaning and dusting all our religious goods to be presented for sale as from this weekend.


Thank you for your generosity, this is STEWARDSHIP IN ACTION.





Sunday Masses are being offered, (pre-bookings still required), in all three churches of our Parish. The following mass schedule operates while the present restrictions are in place. Bookings are still necessary, as is social distancing and extensive sanitising conditions, to comply with COVID-safe requirements. 


Sacred Heart: 

145 max capacity

Saturday Night - 5pm *NB new Mass time*

  • (Maronite Mass 7:15pm, Saturday Night)

Sunday - 9am and 6pm

  • (Polish mass 12 noon Sundays)

St Vincent’s:

100 max capacity

Sunday - 8am and 10am

Stella Maris: 

85 max capacity 

Saturday Night - 5pm

Sunday - 7am

Please note: 

Numbers allowed in each Church are based on social distancing restrictions of each church’s seating area divided by 4 square metres required per person.

Additional to these Sunday Masses we will continue to celebrate Mass at Sacred Heart each weekday at 9am. You will be informed by the parish website or E-Newsletter when this situation changes.

With the added masses you are still required to make bookings for each mass using the booking site on the parish website, maintaining a social-distance of 1.5metres, receiving Holy Communion in the hand only and refraining from physical contact when offering the Sign of Peace. Please know that Masses are now open to all age groups but certainly stay at home if you are feeling even slightly unwell.  At each Mass we need marshals at the door to record the names of attendees and ushers to show people to the designated seats. After each Mass, we are required to clean the Church and toilets thoroughly. It is possible that our Church facilities may be inspected by the health department to ensure that we are adhering to the strict requirements.

To assist in these requirements you are asked to let us know at the parish office if you are ready to assist. At least six people are needed to take on these duties at each Mass. Please do not leave these duties to the usual generous people who always seem ready to help. Each parishioner is asked to consider helping in this unusual time.  

Please stay informed about any changes to this schedule through the newsletter or website, particularly if any new restrictions are required by our health authorities.

The Archbishop has continued to exempt everyone from the obligation to attend Sunday mass during restrictions. 

We ask that people consult the parish website https://www.surfersparadiseparish.com.au, to keep up to date with any changes relating to masses.

Mass Booking page: https://bookeo.com/catholicmassgoldcoast

Or, if you have no access to a computer, please ring the parish office between 9am and 12 noon Mon-Friday. Ph: 5572 5433


Confirmation 2020                                                                                                                                                        Sacramental Program Enrolments for Preparation for Confirmation have now closed.                                                  While our online link (via the parish newsletter) will still allow you to complete a form, any enrolment applications received after July 2020 will be held as enrolments for the 2021 Sacramental Group. 

Families of children already enrolled in our Sacramental Group - Preparation for Confirmation 2020 should be aware that our original 2020 dates and workshop style Preparation Program for Confirmation were cancelled due to Covid restrictions. Consequently there are, as yet, no dates set for the Celebration of Confirmation 2020 - This will be negotiated around the availability of the bishop or his representative and the much reduced allowances for the number of guests each confirmation candidate will be able to invite due to social distancing requirements.

There will also be no preparation workshops in the style of recent years but the Sacramental Team is currently organising an ‘At Home Preparation for Confirmation’ document that will be similar to the at home learning-teaching model used when schools were in lockdown earlier this year. We will eventually email the document to parents of enrolled children but this step is still several weeks away. 

Please know that we are working hard to bring this opportunity for preparing for Confirmation at home while respecting and complying with Covid 19 response requirements. We very much appreciate your patience and will contact families via email as soon as possible.

First Communion celebration in Surfers Paradise Parish 2020

A number of our Parish children have been working at home to complete their Preparation for First Communion. They have been learning and praying with their parents (or whole families where possible) to explore the information and activities provided. We have asked that children and adults talk and research together to complete the tasks and then return the completed work to our Children’s Sacramental Coordinator, Cathy Anderson.

Those who have returned their completed activity document will be offered places at parish masses in Sacred Heart Church in the beginning of the month of September. Each first communicant may invite 6 guests on the day of their First Communion.

Notification of the offer of places at one of the First Communion masses and booking for these places will be managed through emails from and to Cathy Anderson andersoncm@bne.catholic.net.au and NOT through the online booking system available to other parishioners. First Communion families, please don’t trigger a double booking situation by making your own online booking - Thanks in anticipation of your help on this.

Sacred Heart Masses available for First Communicants:

5pm Saturday, 5th September or

9am Sunday, 6th September or

5pm Saturday, 12th September 


Congratulations and thanks to all families who have agreed to try this different approach to preparing their children to receive the sacraments. We ask all parishioners to pray for the adults and children of these families, as  each family member fulfils their amazing part in spreading the Good News and growing the family of faith here in Surfers Paradise Parish. 





The two  Religious Goods Shops in our Parish at Sacred Heart and St Vincent’s Churches are reopening this weekend, before and after all Masses.

Our shops are ‘Holy Spaces’ all the religious goods stock has been blessed by the Priests prior to re-opening. This will save you running after the Priest to bless your purchases.

We have pre-filled Holy Water bottles available for sale or bring your own and we will gladly fill your bottle with Holy Water for you.

And breaking news….. we now have eftpos facilities in the two shops, where you can finalise your purchase without having to use cash.

Donations to the Parish collections will also be accepted via these eftpos facilities, call in now!

Generous persons are required  at the Sacred Heart Church, before and after Mass, to help with Religious Goods Sales. Please inquire at the Parish Office or contact Pat for further information mob 0404 805 819


Shuttertsock Licensed stock illustration ID: 1644058165. Holy Prophet Elijah in a cave. By Mashosh

In the first reading, Elijah meets God; whose presence is indicated by a “tiny whispering sound,” or as a “gentle breeze,” which is also translated in some texts as “the sound of sheer silence”.... And then, in the Gospel, Jesus is encountered taming the wild, raging, stormy waters. God is gentle and also immensely powerful at the same time. God is more powerful than ANY storms, dramas or “clamours” in life. God is quiet but also entirely authoritative, (not needing to “out-yell” any contrary voices). His quiet but profound TRUTH will prevail over even the biggest, loudest and scariest of situations or people. 

We have learnt all too well that the loudest voices in the world are not necessarily the ones that hold the key to eternal truth. Jesus’ voice was by no means the loudest voice of his time, but his message is ultimate truth and life, and his gentle, quiet voice of truth has resounded powerfully down the centuries, further than any other voice ever could.

And so, whether it be storms or silence… / dramatic or ordinary…/ The message is the same: God is present and active amongst us and with us.  And the signs are there, if we search and listen with the “eyes and ears” of faith.

Like Saint Peter, we too have to be willing to get out of the boat, “with heart pounding and mind racing,” (and do so despite the fear, and the doubts), and all the while, keep our eyes fixed firmly on Jesus.  

Fr. Paul Kelly

(References: Alice Camille; and WILLIAM BARCLAY . THE LETTER TO THE ROMANS. REVISED EDITION. 1975 . The Saint Andrew Press. Edinburgh, Scotland).



Church music and singingThis one may be a surprise for many.  

I know that many parishes all over the world plan the hymns and music that will be used for the Mass based on a system they have inherited from those who planned it before them. The Priests of the Parish may even have taught them this. SO, it is with more than a little surprise that people find out that when it comes to music and singing within Mass, it was actually designed so that it could be self-contained. That is, there is no need to reinvent the wheel.

The instruction to the Roman Missal:

The Importance of Singing.

“The Christian faithful who gather together as one to await the Lord’s coming are instructed by the Apostle Paul to sing together psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs (cf. Col 3:16). … Every care should be taken that singing by the ministers and the people is not absent in celebrations that occur on Sundays and on holy days of obligation.

In the choosing of the parts actually to be sung, however, preference should be given to those that are of greater importance and especially to those to be sung by the priest or the deacon or the Lector, with the people responding, or by the priest and people together. (Para 39 General Instruction on the Roman Missal, GIRM). 

The Entrance chant begins as the Priest enters (with the deacon) and ministers. The purpose of this chant is to open the celebration, foster the unity of those who have been gathered, introduce their thoughts to the mystery of the liturgical season or festivity, and accompany the procession of the priest and ministers…. The antiphon and Psalm from the Graduale Romanum or the Graduale Simplex, (see below), may be used, or another song that is suited to the sacred action, the day, or the season and that has a text approved by the Conference of Bishops. (Paras 47-48). 

(Notice the order! It is often overlooked or not understood.  The antiphon and Psalm from the Graduale Romanum or the Graduale Simplex, (see below), may be used, or another song. So, chants from the church hymn books called the Graduale Romanum and Graduale Simplex, have set texts recommended for each Sunday and feast…  That is, there are recommended singable chants, for the entrance, the preparation of the gifts and communion.   

Most liturgy committees and music groups jump immediately to the secondary option. This is understandable because most people have never been told about any other options or preferred options for the Mass. Quite frankly, many do not know these other books exist, and so it is no wonder these texts and options are not used more often. These primary choices were not published in english along with the others in the reforms following Vatican Council II. However, there are now several translations in English.  

The Gloria.

The Gloria is a very ancient and venerable hymn. The text of this hymn may not be replaced by any other text. It is sung or said on Sundays outside the Seasons of Advent and Lent, on Solemnities and Feasts, and at special celebrations of a more solemn character. (para 53, GIRM). 

(By the way, in the new translation of the Roman missal,  in the recitation of the Gloria.. the word used is SINS,  not SIN…   This is the same in the text of the Lamb of God:  the word used is SINS not SIN).   

The Responsorial Psalm.

The Responsorial Psalm is an integral part of the Liturgy of the Word and holds great liturgical and pastoral importance. The Responsorial Psalm should correspond to each reading and should, as a rule, be taken from the Lectionary. It is preferable that the Responsorial Psalm be sung. (Again, in the official instruction,  it also says that the…) following may also be sung in place of the Psalm assigned in the Lectionary: either the Responsorial gradual from the Graduale Romanum, or the Responsorial Psalm or the Alleluia Psalm from the Graduale Simplex, in the form described in those books. (para 61).

The Acclamation before the Gospel.

After the reading that immediately precedes the Gospel, the Alleluia or another chant indicated by the rubrics is sung, (C). The Alleluia or verse before the Gospel may be omitted if they are not sung. (Para 62)  (so, really, this ought to be sung, or left out completely). 

The procession bringing the gifts is accompanied by the Offertory chant (cf. No. 37b), …... The norms on the manner of singing are the same as for the Entrance chant (cf. No. 48). Singing may always accompany the rite at the Offertory, even when there is no procession with the gifts. (Para 74).

While the priest is receiving the Sacrament, the Communion chant is begun. Its purpose is to express the communicants’ union in spirit by means of the unity of their voices, to show joy of heart, and to highlight more clearly the ‘communitarian’ nature of the procession to receive Communion. The singing is continued for as long as the Sacrament is being administered to the faithful. (Para 86.). An antiphon from the Graduale Romanum, with or without the Psalm, or an antiphon with Psalm from the Graduale Simplex, or some other suitable liturgical song approved by the Conference of Bishops may be sung at Communion. (Para 86). 

(Again notice, “some other suitable song that is approved, is actually the secondary option). 

I am not suggesting that we stop singing hymns that  we are familiar with, but what I am saying is the primary choice can guide us with what type and theme of hymn we can choose, so we are not scrambling about in the dark every time we come to prepare a liturgy, as if it is a completely blank canvas that needs to be created anew each and every time by each and every liturgy or music group around the world, as if there is no actual textual assistance).

There are regular parts of the Mass such as the Gloria (except in Lent and Advent), the Lamb of God, and some Acclamations and responses (Holy Holy, The Mystery of Faith, Great Amen), that should always be sung on a Sunday and Holy Day and in masses for Funerals and Weddings and other significant events

“In singing these, we are singing the very Mass, and so these parts take precedence over anything else that is sung.” (This paragraph is from “The Role of Music in Sunday Mass.” By Ilsa Neicinieks RSM. Office for Worship, Adelaide Archdiocese).

Further to my examples above, the Church asks groups to prepare Music but, rather unfairly to them, never officially or consistently handed them the full tools that are extremely helpful in this role. This has led to innumerable groups “reinventing the wheel.”  Some tools were not officially published in English, such as the two major Catholic musical sources which it recommends in the General Instruction as our primary Hymnal. It would not be surprising to learn that many people involved, for decades, in Liturgy Preparation and Hymn choices, have never heard of books called the “Graduale Romanum,” and the “Graduale Simplex.” These are a classic part of the liturgical heritage of the Roman Catholic Church. These are officially the first recommended options for musical choices in Masses. Many would be equally shocked to discover that these books very conveniently feature musical chants for every Mass for the Sundays, Feasts and Seasons of the Year.

We can see these books clearly referred to in the “GIRM,” but somehow we have not comprehended the profound significance of these books. The texts have been translated into English in various different editions, but oddly there is not an official “English typical edition,” as in the case of the Roman Missal or the selection of the references for the Lectionary. Nevertheless, there are plenty of simple text and music translations which would be very helpful to all parishes.  One such link is found here:  https://media.musicasacra.com/books/simple_english_propers.pdf 

What these texts reveal, is that the ancient hymns of the Church, (the PSALMS and various BIBLICAL CANTICLES, -eg. Exodus 15:1-19 or Luke 1:46-55, etc), hold primacy. Biblical Psalms and Canticles are first and foremost “Hymns of Catholic Worship” (and for that matter, for wider Judeo-Christian Worship too, as applicable). Everything else is a modest reflection or glimmer of them – at best!  Somehow, what was actually suggested as the third, qualified, option in the General Instruction, as a possible choice for Mass singing, has for the last fifty years become the default or “go-to-first,” option. It was not helpful to liturgy preparers that they were not consistently taught about the actually preferred texts.  What could have become a familiar part of our Liturgy, after some fifty years of Liturgical renewal, appears now to be rather novel and unfamiliar and a bit daunting. This is a great tragedy.  It also means that people are unnecessarily worrying about choosing options for Masses when, unknown to them, there are set recommendations already. 

Also, even if one wants to choose an approved Hymn from their repertoire, which I am not arguing against, the texts of the “Graduale,” should still be the first point of reference when preparing Liturgy, as it is invaluable in helping to suggest which modern, approved, hymns, might be consistent in theme or imagery with the set psalm antiphons and verses. 

The official Graduale texts also dispel the lingering misconception in liturgy preparation that (for example), the Entrance Chant needs to mention “gathering,” or that offertory hymns need to mention “offering,” or that communion hymns need to literally feature words such as “bread, wine, Body, Blood, wheat, vine, grapes, or communion.” (They certainly CAN mention these, but they need not explicitly or even implicitly do that). They could also be generally praising God, or reflecting upon God’s many qualities and blessings. Again our communion and union is expressed primarily by the unity of our singing, and by our joy, and unity of action, as we walk in procession as disciples, to receive the Body and Blood of Christ.  How these other, restrictive concepts crept into the Liturgy is anyone’s guess!  

The General Instruction makes it quite clear that the Entrance Chant is for the purpose of uniting people in mind and heart and expressing that gathering by singing in unison. The gathering is actually with our voices and hearts and not primarily about literally “saying so,” in the words of a hymn. It is not required that we are singing that we are “Gathering in,” or being “gathered in.” It is also not especially about us singing about what we are doing, but focusing rather on what God is doing and who God is.  At the very least, mindfulness of the set chants for each Mass will end the oft heard cry, “we can’t use that hymn as an Entrance/ Communion, because it is not sufficiently 'Gathering'/'Eucharist' themed.” That argument can have narrow and broad approaches to it. 

It also stops people thinking they have to choose hymns that slavishly stick to the wrongly-called “theme” of the MassThe Readings from the Mass of the Day DO NOT set the theme of the Mass.  Again, I am all too aware that many parishes have for many years implied or actually used that kind of thinking, but it is incorrect. The “theme” of every Mass is always the same! The “theme” of every single mass is  the whole Paschal Mystery of the Life, Ministry, death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Graduale shows us that there is no such slavishness to the readings when choosing the chant for Entrance, offertory or communion. 

It might be added here that the Liturgy does not really envisage a Recessional Hymn. This has been a later practice. Again, this might be a real shock to many. The Mass technically and literally ends with the dismissal:  “Go, in peace!” When the  Priest (or deacon) says or sings the Dismissal and the people reply by either saying/singing: “Thanks be to God.” 

Some might object – “We cannot sing Psalm antiphons for Entrance, Offertory, and Communion. We aren’t used to them – And, we haven’t got the resources or ability to sing psalms regularly or throughout the whole Mass.”  However, that is not correct. Plainchant, or simple melody psalms, with the emphasis on the WORDS and not the tune, would be easily learnt, even if initially set to one common tone, or perhaps only a few simple tones. Plainchant and simple melodies were designed for communal singing, and in practice they become really familiar after only a bit of practice. People pick this up extremely quickly and become really good at it and surprisingly attached to its clarity, simplicity and beauty. It is also an excellent choice for communities who have limited musical resources or limited ability for accompaniment. 

Let us seriously consider unleashing the whole genius of the Catholic Liturgy and not just parts of it.  



(From a translation of the Graduale Romanum/ Simplex

- Not shown here are the Graduale Psalm or the Graduale Gospel Acclamation choices). 

INTROIT  (Entrance)

CF. IS 48: 20 

Preach the news with a voice of joy; * let it be heard, al-le-lu-ia; speak it out to the very ends of the earth; the Lord has liber-a-ted his peo-ple, al-le-lu-ia,

Al- le- lu-ia.

Psalm 66 (65)

1. Cry out with joy to god, all the earth; *

O sing to the glory of his name. O render him glorious praise. *

Say to god, “how awesome your deeds!

2. Because of the greatness of your strength, *

Your enemies fawn upon you.

Before you all the earth shall bow down, * shall sing to you, sing to your name!”

3. Come and see the works of God: *

Awesome his deeds among the children of men.

He turned the sea into dry land; *

They passed through the river on foot.

Glory be to the Father ...



Ps 66 (65): 8, 9, 20

O Nations, bless the Lord our God, * let the voice of his praises resound; he has restored my soul to life and he has not suffered my feet to stumble; blessed be the Lord who has neither rejected my prayer nor turned his mercy away from me, alleluia.


Psalm 66 (65)

1. Cry out with joy to god, all the earth; *

O sing to the glory of his name. O render him glorious praise. *

Say to god, “how awesome your deeds!

2. Because of the greatness of your strength, *

Your enemies fawn upon you.

Before you all the earth shall bow down, *

Shall sing to you, sing to your name!”

3. Come and see the works of God: *

Awesome his deeds among the children of men. He turned the sea into dry land; *

They passed through the river on foot.

4. Let our joy, then, be in him; *

He rules forever by his might.

His eyes keep watch on the nations: * let rebels not exalt themselves.


Communion (Year A)

 Jn 14: 18  Iv

I Will not leave you orphans, * I will come to you again, al-le-lu-ia; and your heart will rejoice, al-le-lu-Ia, al-le-lu-ia.  Psalm 122 (121)


1. I rejoiced when they said to me, *

“let us go to the house of the Lord.” And now our feet are standing *

Within your gates, O Jerusalem.

2. Jerusalem is built as a city *

Bonded as one together.

It is there that the tribes go up, *

The tribes of the Lord.

3. For Israel’s witness it is *

To praise the name of the Lord.

There were set the thrones for judgement, *

The thrones of the house of David.

4. For the peace of Jerusalem pray, *

“may they prosper, those who love you.”

May peace abide in your walls, * and security be in your towers.

5. For the sake of my family and friends, * let me say, “Peace upon you.”

For the sake of the house of the Lord, our God, * I will seek good things for you.

Glory be to the father ... 

Fr Paul.


Click on this link for a message from Bishop Ken to Brisbane Archdiocese Parishes


“God will carry you safely through every struggle.” – St Mary of the Cross MacKillop

We look forward to celebrating the feast day of Mary MacKillop this Saturday, the patron saint of the Archdiocese of Brisbane.  I can’t help but reflect on the faith and resilience she maintained during challenging times - what a suitable reminder for all of us.  

A livestream of the Solemnity of Mary of the Cross MacKillop will take place on Saturday at 11am.  At that Mass we also celebrate 175 years of Catholic education in Queensland.  In 1845, the first parish priest of Brisbane town, Father James Hanly, employed lay people, Mary and Michael Bourke to teach 56 students in our state's first Catholic school.  The school began on the site of what is now the Myer Centre in Brisbane's CBD. 

As COVID forces us to find new ways to teach the Gospel, perhaps it’s reassuring to know that Mary MacKillop and James Hanly found themselves in very similar situations. 

Happy Feast Day.

Bishop Ken Howell

To celebrate our patron saint and live stream the Saturday the 8th Feast Day Celebration visit: https://brisbanecatholic.org.au/multimedia/web-cast/


Book for Mass at Surfers Paradise Parish: https://bookeo.com/catholicmassgoldcoast

Home Resources: 

You can visit the Stay Connected page on our website to find an extensive list of information and resources to help during these times of isolation. Below are quick links to help stay in touch with our Parish and celebrate Mass at home:

Access the digital Catholic Leader: https://catholicleader.com.au/digital-newspaper-covid19

Liturgy for you at Home (produced by SPP): https://soundcloud.com/user-633212303/tracks

Weekly Homily (produced by SPP): https://homilycatholic.blogspot.com

Surfers Paradise Parish Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/surferscatholic/

Breaking Parish News (SPP Blog): https://news-parish.blogspot.com/

Livestream Catholic Mass (from Brisbane Cathedral, usually around 10 am): St Stephen’s Cathedral live webcast

Video on Demand of Masses: https://www.youtube.com/user/CatholicBrisbane/videos

Mass for You at Home (free-to-air TV): 

Channel 10, Sundays 6:00 - 6:30 am and on-demand here also available on Foxtel 173 Aurora Channel

Liturgy Brisbane - Gospel Resources for at home: Sunday Readings: Read at Home  and  Family Prayer: Week by Week



FOR THOSE WHO ARE SICK: John Zappa, George Cook, Caterina (Cathy) Randazzo, Peter O’Brien, Baby Charbel Raphael, 

Angela Duvnjak, Judy Dempsey, Monica Bailey, Rachel Raines, Savannah Ayoub, Lisa Mangan, Colin Virtue, Ann Harris, 

Ann-Marie Loder, Angel Salvador, Brian Woodgate, Kate Smith, Tricia Baumann, Gus Reeves, Baby Maeve Lombard, Kathy Kiely, 

Ron Perry, Kim Parkes, Rosslyn Wallis, Jabour Haddad, Yvonne Lofthouse, Maureen Murphy, Peter Walsh, Arthur Haddad, 

Jean Di Benedetto, Damian Callinan, Rosemary Wales, Peter Allsopp, Yvonne Campesi, Louis Couch, Steve Wayt, Michael Tracey, Joanne Mooney, Joanne Parkes, Michelle MacDonald, John & Molly Robinson, Mary Kerr, Eileen McCarthy.

And all suffering from the effects of Covid-19.

RECENTLY DECEASED:  Paul Giacomantonio, Josephine ‘Joyce’ Farrugia, Vittoria Uliana, Terrence Faloon, Raphael (Ray) Desira, Margaret Ann Mason, Guieseppe ‘Joe’ Alba, Margaret Mary Gordon, Marie Nunn, Patrick Boyle, William (Bill) Wall, Marie Doreen Emslie, Dan Quinn.

ANNIVERSARY OF DEATH:  Florencia Edar Pacifico, Jacky Monteith, Thomas Nash, Perfecto Garde Jr, Pero Milicevic, Maria Victoria Fava, Joe Vella,  Slavko Saric, Reg Sheehan, Nea Mary Butler, Vera Endrody. 

DECEASED: Bruck Wheeler, and the Wheeler, Westwell and Woodgate families.

Next Weekend’s Readings

Readings for Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time. Year A 

FIRST READING: Isaiah 56:1, 6-7|

Ps: Psalm 67:2-3, 5, 6+8 “Lord, your love is eternal, do not forsake the work of your hands.”

SECOND READING: Romans 11:13-15, 29-32

GOSPEL ACCLAMATION (cf. Matthew 4:23): Alleluia, alleluia! Jesus preached the good news of the Kingdom. And healed all who were sick.

GOSPEL: Matthew 15:21-28


“The Archdiocese of Brisbane holds that children and vulnerable adults are a gift from God with an intrinsic right to dignity of life, respect and security from physical and emotional harm.  They are to be treasured, nurtured and protected from any harm.” 

As a Parish Community, we pray for a change of heart, that we respond to our grief by reaching out to one another in truth and love.