Travel through Holy Week with the Deaf Community


Palm Sunday

As we enter Holy Week this year, it feels a bit like everything has come around too quickly. Are we ready? Probably not! I was told many years ago that to be too prepared means there is no space for the Holy Spirit. There is plenty of room for the Holy Spirit in our Holy Week this year!

We were delighted to join Fr Paulo Bagini and his parish at St Gregory the Great for Palm Sunday. Fr Paulo reminded us of the light that Christ brings to our life. For those experiencing darkness and doubt we have the reassurance of the resurrection to come. We walk this week with Jesus as he takes on our sins and guilt. He knows our troubles and experienced human suffering. He knows the problems we face and is with us in all aspects of our life.

Chrism Mass

“I wish I had a thousand lives! I would sacrifice them all for this great cause!” Cardinal Vincent shared these words of St Alban Roe who was martyred at Tyburn in 1642 at our Chrism Mass today. The procession of priests seemed longer than ever at Mass today, a Mass that was a real celebration of both the priests who we prayed for especially today and also of the community coming together to support the priests. The Deaf Community were delighted to have both Fr Keith Stoakes and Fr Paulo Bagini come and sign for them. As we pray for our priests, we thank God for their ministries and pray especially for those priests who work with the Deaf Community and have taken the time to learn to sign.

Maundy Thursday

Do not be like Peter, follow the example that Jesus gave us and be humble, serve one another. Fr Vlad reminded us that whatever our skills or experiences, whatever our age or fragility, Christ has give us an example to follow that we are called to be active and to serve others in our communities and families. We need to work out what that service is for each of us. “Maundy”, first used about 1250 AD, comes from the Latin mandātum meaning to mandate or command. “A new commandment, I give to you” Jesus said: “to love one another as I have loved you.” Through service to others we follow that commandment to love one another.

Good Friday

We journey today with Jesus on that road to Calvary reflecting first on the Stations of the Cross.

At the Passion, after the Gospel reading Fr Vlad invited us all to reflect silently on that powerful story. In the stillness of the chapel we all sat in silence and pondered the meaning of the Gospel will around us the vibrations of the tube lines could be felt and the world around us carried on. “Come, let us adore him.”

Vigil Mass

“On this most sacred night, in which our Lord Jesus Christ passed over from death to life, the Church calls her sons and daughters, scattered throughout the world, to come together to watch and pray. If we keep the memorial of the Lord’s paschal solemnity in this way, listening to his word and celebrating his mysteries, then we shall have sure hope of sharing his triumph over death and living with him in God.”

We came together, we watched, we prayed, we shared the word and celebrated the mysteries together. The Deaf Community the Sisters of the Assumption and many other people, some local to the area, other visitors all coming together to celebrate for the same reason:

Christ is risen, he is risen indeed. Alleluia!

Our grateful thanks to Mgr Vlad, Fr Robin, Fr Keith and Fr Paulo for making our Holy Week so meaningful and moving. And to the Srs of the Assumption, thank you from the bottom of our hearts for welcoming us into your chapel once again.


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