July – August 2019 | Edition Number 249 | FREE
Westminster Cathedral Magazine
Gifts of heaven she has given, Noble Lady! to our race; She, the Queen, who decks her subjects With the light of God’s own grace. St Bernard of Cluny
A ROSARY GARDEN
Oremus Cathedral Clergy House 42 Francis Street London SW1P 1QW T 020 7798 9055 E email@example.com W www.westminstercathedral.org.uk
Oremus, the magazine of Westminster Cathedral, reflects the life of the Cathedral and the lives of those who make it a place of faith in central London. If you think that you would like to contribute an article or an item of news, please contact the Editor. Patron The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster Chairman Canon Christopher Tuckwell Editor Fr John Scott Oremus Team Tony Banks – Distribution Zoe Goodway – Marketing Manel Silva – Subscriptions Berenice Roetheli – Proofreading Ellen Gomes – Archives Design and Art Direction Julian Game
Cathedral Life: Past & Present St Paul – The Musical by Fr Andrew Gallagher
Baptism, Confirmation, Reception – More Easter Tales 12 & 13 13
The Newly Confirmed A Century of Development: The View to the River
14 & 15
Cathedral History: The Choir that Never Was by Patrick Rogers
16 & 17
Farewell by Oliver Delargy
Cathedral History in Pictures: ‘Verdun Sunday’ 1922 by Paul Tobin
The Grand Organ Festival’s Forthcoming Performers
Registered Charity Number 233699 ISSN 1366-7203 Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily represent the views of the Editor or the Oremus Team. Neither are they the official views of Westminster Cathedral. The Editor reserves the right to edit all contributions. Publication of advertisements does not imply any form of recommendation or endorsement. Unless otherwise stated, photographs are published under a creative commons or similar licence. Every effort is made to credit all images. No part of this publication may be reproduced without permission.
Features New at the Royal Academy
Peter’s Pence by Dr Michael Straiton KCGS
Teaching from Rome – Biology and Gender
The Church at Sea by Greg Watts
Rochester to Ramsgate – The Augustine Camino by Bernadette Kehoe
Book Review: Beth Porter’s Accidental Friends by Louise Sage
A Luminous Garden at the Rosary Shrine by Joanna Bogle
From Farm Street to Canada
Regulars The apse mosaic of the Coronation of Our Lady in the Papal Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore in Rome dates from 1295, whilst other mosaics in this, the largest Marian church in the city, date from the 5th century onwards. Our Lady’s Assumption, celebrated on 15 August, is preceded by the memorial of the Dedication of the Basilica on 5 August. © Wolfgang Moroder
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July – August 2019
From the Editor
18 & 19
Cathedral Diary and Notices
24 & 25
Crossword and Poem of the Month
Friends of the Cathedral
St Vincent de Paul Primary School
Join the Companions ... and help us to keep publishing Oremus free of charge Although we earn income from the advertising which we carry, Oremus relies on donations from readers to cover its production costs. The Companions of Oremus was established to recognise those who give generously to support us. Open exclusively to individuals, Companions’ names are published in the magazine each month (see page 7). All members are invited to one or more social events during the year and Mass is offered for their intentions from time to time. If you would like to support us by joining the Companions, please write to Oremus, Cathedral Clergy House, 42 Francis Street, London SW1P 1QW or email firstname.lastname@example.org with your contact details, including postcode. Members are asked to give a minimum of £100 annually. Please mention how you would like your name to appear in our membership list and if you are eligible to Gift Aid your donation. Postal subscriptions to Oremus may be purchased through the Cathedral Gift Shop’s website or by using the coupon printed in the magazine. Thank you for your support.
St Paul – The Musical Fr Andrew Gallagher Take nine classes of children, put them in T-shirts, tie tea towels round their heads and what do you get? On the evening of 12 June our tenth annual Chorister Outreach Concert took place in the Cathedral. This year’s magnum opus was entitled From Saul to Paul: Sinner to Saint and 435 children from nine schools around London sang songs composed by the children and their teachers journeying through the life of St Paul from watching the stoning of Stephen the deacon, to being shipwrecked, to his execution in Rome.
This concert is the culmination of work throughout the year by our energetic Outreach Musical Director, Ben Vonberg-Clark and his team, who each week go into Catholic schools to teach children teamwork, creativity and singing technique based around a particular character from the Bible. Six times in the year the children come together to the Cathedral to work on their masterpiece for its performance on a summer’s evening. Once again this year, the Cathedral was filled with parents, parishioners and other visitors, who had a smile on their faces throughout the evening as we sat in awe of the children’s memories and Ben’s enthusiasm to bring all their talent together. And, as you can see, the children thoroughly enjoyed themselves, too. Oremus
July – August 2019
ON BEHALF OF THE CHAIRMAN
The Editor writes This summer edition of Oremus is being put together in the middle of what seems to be an incredibly busy June. The culmination of the season of sacramental preparation here in the Cathedral at Pentecost followed three successive Saturdays during which a total of 270 young people from the diocese were confirmed. Hounslow parish, presenting over 100 candidates, deserves special mention. The annual Matrimony Mass completely filled the Cathedral again and while, by the nature of the event, many older people were present, yet there was a good representation of children and grandchildren accompanying. Three events for children brought a particular atmosphere to the building: the Festival Mass for Mini Vinnies (see the Monthly Album) attracted a nationwide attendance, the Adoremus Mass for diocesan schools underlined the work that the Education Service has done to build on last year’s Eucharistic Congress in Liverpool, and St Paul – The Musical (see opposite) pulsated with enthusiastic singing, animated by the Music Outreach team. All of that contrasts with the present silence that pervades the Cathedral as we reach the halfway point of the Quarant’Ore Devotion. But this is no empty silence, since, both individually and in groups, people have come to witness to the Lord who promises that, if he is lifted up on the Cross, he will draw all peoples to himself. Readers may be a little surprised and, I hope, pleased that two pages are dedicated to a resumé of a new Vatican document, Male and Female He Created Them. But this is an important restatement of fundamental Christian teaching in the light of many contemporary assumptions about ‘gender fluidity’ and the supremacy of personal choice as to our identity. The Catholic Church does not wish to condemn and indeed, this document calls for engagement and discussion, but it also affirms the centrality of our Godgiven nature. It also repeats the teaching of St John Paul II, that parents are the primary educators of their children and bear a responsibility greater than that of any particular school or, indeed, governmental authority. Pope Francis has written in Amoris laetitia of the crucial role in the upbringing of children made by the family and the Church commits herself to supporting this work. Please do read this important resumé, as it confirms us in our Catholic identity and mission.
Westminster Cathedral Cathedral Clergy House 42 Francis Street London SW1P 1QW Telephone 020 7798 9055 Service times 020 7798 9097 Email email@example.com www.westminstercathedral.org.uk Cathedral Chaplains Canon Christopher Tuckwell, Administrator Fr Daniel Humphreys, Sub-Administrator Fr Julio Albornoz Fr Michael Donaghy Fr Andrew Gallagher, Precentor Fr Rajiv Michael Fr John Scott, Registrar Sub-Administrator’s Intern Oliver Delargy Also in residence Franciscan Sisters of Our Lady of Victories Music Department Martin Baker, Master of Music Peter Stevens Obl. OSB, Assistant Master of Music Jonathan Allsopp, Organ Scholar Cathedral Manager Peter McNulty Estates Manager Neil Fairbairn Chapel of Ease Sacred Heart Church Horseferry Road SW1P 2EF
Meanwhile, closer to home, I can report that Canon Christopher continues to make steady progress and is grateful for the support of all the prayers which are offered for him.
July – August 2019
NEW AT THE ROYAL ACADEMY
At one time the show was known simply as ‘The Exhibition’, where the likes of Gainsborough and Reynolds, Turner and Constable sharpened their skills against each other. Nowadays, although there’s a plethora of art fairs, commercial galleries and contemporary exhibitions to choose from, the galleries at Burlington House make an unrivalled setting for artists to display and sell their artworks. For all of the works displayed, the artist is the seller of the work and the Academy takes a 30% commission on all ‘Offers to Purchase’, the proceeds going towards the RA Schools and our diverse programme of exhibitions. The array of works and the celebratory atmosphere of the exhibition make for an unique experience where visitors can browse, buy and discuss the works on show. The members of the Summer Exhibition Committee serve in rotation and convene at monthly meetings to discuss the shape of the show, ensuring that each exhibition has a distinctive character. Each Member is responsible for certain areas and the final selection is made during the eight-day hang. The exhibition is finalised on ‘Sanctioning Day’ when the Committee meets for the last time; beyond this point no changes can be made. Non-Member’s Varnishing Day is traditionally the last opportunity for artists to ‘touch up’ their work. Some still take advantage of this privilege, but on the whole the event is a celebratory one. One of the wonderful eccentricities of the Summer Exhibition is the procession down Piccadilly of artists led by a steel band; another element that distinguishes it from any other show in the world. The Summer Exhibition runs at the RA on Piccadilly until 12 August.
© H-P Haack
What is the Summer Exhibition?
A display in The Collection Gallery will offer an opportunity to see John Flaxman’s rarely-exhibited outline drawings from the RA Collection. These dramatic yet elegant designs were inspired by Greek vase painting and illustrate scenes from Homer’s epic account of the final year of the Trojan War and its aftermath. They feature an array of gods, goddesses, heroes, villains and monsters. Unlike traditional illustration, the scenes were intended to stand alone and were published at the turn of the 19th century with no accompanying text, only brief but evocative captions from Alexander Pope’s verse translation of Homer. The published engravings proved hugely influential and won Flaxman international acclaim. Storylines: Illustrations to Homer’s Iliad and the Odyssey by John Flaxman RA The Collection Gallery Cabinet 10 August 2019 – 5 January 2020
Young Artists Taking inspiration from the Summer Exhibition, the world’s largest opensubmission exhibition, and building on the success of the A-Level Summer Exhibition Online, the Young Artists’ Summer Show recognises artworks made by talented young artists at primary and secondary school level. Selected artists have their work exhibited online or onsite at the Royal Academy, with special prizes also awarded. Submitted artworks have been judged in key stage groups by panels of art experts including Royal Academicians, RA curators and RA Schools students. The exhibition is curated by Royal Academician Bob and Roberta Smith. 6
Clore Learning Centre Online exhibition 10 June – 31 December 2019 On-site 13 July – 4 August 2019
The Click Eli , Year 6 This artwork was made during a lesson, I was fiddling with my fingers when I realised, I could make art out of this. When I finished I realised it looked like someone clicking. I used shading and patterns to make it and it took an hour to make. Oremus
July – August 2019
A HISTORIC COLLECTION/COMPANIONS
Peter’s Pence and Its Founder Dr Michael Straiton KCGS Peter’s Pence is the annual collection taken up throughout the Catholic Church on 29 June each year, the Solemnity of Ss Peter and Paul. The money is meant to support the concerns of the Successors of St Peter for the many different needs of the Universal Church, the relief of those most in need and for dioceses in difficulty. Pope St John XXIII used Peter’s Pence to cover the costs of the Second Vatican Council, which had been called at short notice. The Anglo-Saxon settlements in Britain began in the 5th century and several kingdoms were founded, but the supremacy of each fluctuated over time. In the 8th century Mercia, from the Old English merce, people of the boundaries, was the most powerful. King Ine of Wessex (ruled 688-726) was noted for his code of laws and was a powerful protector and patron of the Church. He built the church which was to become Wells Cathedral. In 725 he abdicated, went on pilgrimage to Rome and was baptised there by Pope Gregory II. He took with him a tribute in coins, which he presented to the Pope. This action was soon taken up throughout the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms and spread to the rest of Europe. A similar tribute was offered by Offa, King of Mercia in 794: one silver penny from every household of means in his kingdom. This was inscribed offa rex mer, collected on 1 August, the feast-day of St Peter ad Vincula: Peter in Chains. During building works in Rome in 1929 to create the Vatican Radio Station, a hoard of 517 Anglo-Saxon coins was unearthed dating from the 9th to 10th century. These were considered to be the annual donation of Peter’s Pence. They were sent to London to be sold at Glendennings and were purchased by private buyers. The British Museum studied the collection, made a detailed list of the coins and took plaster copies of them. Pope Benedict XVI reflected on Catholic giving through this yearly collection in an address in 2006: ‘Peter’s Pence is the most characteristic expression of the participation of all the faithful in the Bishop of Rome’s charitable initiatives in favour of the universal Church. The gesture has not only a practical value, but also a strong symbolic one as a sign of communion with the Pope and attention to the needs of one’s brothers; and therefore your service possesses a refined ecclesial character.’ Dr Michael Straiton KCSG is Vice Chairman of The Friends of the Holy Father, which was set up in 1980 to promote and advance Catholicism by supporting the Pope through the study of his teaching, making it more widely known and by raising funds to defray the expenses arising from his apostolic ministry. Further information about the FHF is available from the website: www.thefriendsoftheholyfather.org or from the Honorary Secretary, 23A Vincent House, Vincent Square, London SW1P 2NB. July – August 2019
Companions of Oremus We are very grateful for the support of the following: Mrs Mary Barsh Mrs Else Benson RIP Dr Stuart Blackie Anne Veronica Bond Richard Bremer Francis George Clark Daniel Crowley Ms Georgina Enang Alfredo Fernandez Fred Gardiner Connie Gibbes Zoe & Nick Goodway Mrs Valerie Hamblen Bernadette Hau Mrs Henry Hely-Hutchinson Mrs Cliona Howell Alice M Jones & Jacob F Jones Poppy K Mary Thérèse Kelly Florence M G Koroma Raymund Livesey Barry Lock Alan Lloyd in memoriam Clare and John Lusby Christiana Thérèse Macarthy-Woods Paul Marsden Pamela McGrath Linda McHugh Peter McNelly in memoriam James Maple Mary Maxwell Mrs C Mitchell-Gotell RIP Abundia Toledo Munar Chris Stewart Munro Mrs Brigid Murphy Kate Nealon Cordelia Onodu Emel Rochat Berenice Roetheli John Scanlan Mr Luke Simpson Sonja Soper Tessa and Ben Strickland Eileen Terry Robin Michael Tinsley Mr Alex Walker Jacqueline Worth Patricia M Wright and of our anonymous Companions If you would like to become a Companion of Oremus, see page 4
MALE AND FEMALE HE CREATED THEM
Thinking Through, Teaching Truth The Congregation for Catholic Education in Rome has published Male and Female He Created Them: Towards a path of dialogue on the question of gender theory in education. This new document is intended as an instrument to help guide Catholic contributions to the ongoing debate about human sexuality, and to address the challenges that emerge from gender ideology. The objective is to support those engaged in the education of the younger generations to address ‘methodically’, in light of the broader horizon of education in love, the issues most debated today on human sexuality. In particular, it is addressed to Catholic schools and to those who, inspired by a Christian vision, work in other schools; to parents, students, and staff; but also to bishops, priests, and religious, as well as ecclesial movements and associations of the faithful. The Congregation which prepared the text speaks of ‘an educational crisis’, in particular on the themes of affectivity and sexuality, in the face of ‘challenges emerging from varying forms of an ideology that is given the general name “gender theory”’, which 'denies the difference and reciprocity in nature of a man and a woman', and considers them as ‘merely the product of historical and cultural conditioning’. Identity would then ‘become the choice of the individual, one which can also change over time’. The text speaks of an anthropological disorientation that characterises the cultural climate of our time, contributing to ‘the destabilization of the family’. Quoting Amoris laetitia, the document says that, among other things, this ideology ‘leads to educational programmes and legislative enactments that promote a personal identity and emotional intimacy radically separated from the biological difference between male
© Bernard Gagnon
Male and female He created them, in Abreha and Atsbeha church, Ethiopia
and female’. This is the context of the new document, which aims to promote a methodology ‘based on three guiding principles’ of listening, reasoning, and proposing. In engaging in dialogue on the question of gender in education, the document makes a distinction ‘between the ideology of gender on the one hand, and the whole field of research on gender that the human sciences have undertaken, on the other’. Citing Pope Francis, it notes that ‘while the ideologies of gender claim to respond … “to what are at times understandable aspirations”, they also seek “to assert themselves as absolute and unquestionable, even dictating how children should be raised”, and thus preclude dialogue’. Nonetheless, research has been carried out which seeks to deepen our understanding of the differences between men and women, and how those are experienced. The document therefore explains that ‘it is in relation to this type of research than we should be open to listen, to reason and to propose’.
In a brief historical survey of the beginnings of gender theory, the document notes that in the 1990s ‘it was suggested that one could uphold the theory of a radical separation between gender and sex, with the former having priority over the latter’. It continues ‘Such a goal was seen as an important stage in the evolution of humanity, in which “a society without sexual differences” could be envisaged’. Further, ‘in a growing contraposition between nature and culture, the propositions of gender theory converge in the concept of “queer”, which refers to dimensions of sexuality that are extremely fluid, flexible, and as it were, nomadic’. This, the document says, ‘culminates in the assertion of the complete emancipation of the individual from any a priori given sexual definition, and the disappearance of classifications seen as overly rigid’. Nonetheless, the document goes on to point out ‘some positions that could provide points of agreement within the framework of gender research, which have ‘the potential to yield growth in mutual understanding’. One area of possible agreement, it suggests, ‘is the need to educate children and young people to respect every person in their particularity and difference, so that no one should suffer bullying, violence, insults or unjust discrimination based on their specific characteristics (such as special needs, race, religion, sexual tendencies, etc.)’. As another example, the document points out, ‘as a further positive development the “values of femininity" found in contemporary reflections on gender’. In particular, it speaks of the willingness of women to dedicate themselves in a special way to human relationships, especially for the benefit of the weakest. Quoting St John Paul II, the document notes that women ‘exhibit a kind of affective, cultural and spiritual motherhood Oremus
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MALE AND FEMALE HE CREATED THEM
which has inestimable value for the development of individuals and the future of society’. However, the document also highlights some ‘points of criticism’, noting, for instance, that ‘gender theory (especially in its most radical forms) speaks of a gradual process of denaturalisation, that is a move away from nature’. In this view, concepts such as ‘sexual identity’ and ‘family’ are based on ‘a confused concept of freedom in the realm of feelings and wants’. Turning to education, the document stresses the primary rights and duties of parents with regard to the education of their children rights and duties which cannot be delegated or usurped by others. It also notes that children have the right to
July – August 2019
a mother and a father, and that it is within the family that children can learn to recognise the beauty of sexual difference. Schools, for their part, are called to engage with the family in a subsidiary way, and to dialogue with parents, respecting also the family's culture. It is necessary, the document says, to rebuild an ‘alliance’ between family, schools, and society, which can ‘produce educational programmes on affectivity and sexuality that respect each person's own stage of maturity regarding these areas and at the same time promote respect for the body of the other person’. The document also emphasizes the ‘legitimate aspirations of Catholic schools to maintain their own vision of human sexuality’, maintaining that
‘a democratic state cannot reduce the range of education on offer to a single school of thought’. Finally, the document notes the importance for Catholic schools of taking ‘into consideration the age-group of the students to be taught’, and of treating ‘each person with respect. This can be done ‘through a way of accompanying that is discreet and confidential, capable of reaching out to those who are experiencing complex and painful situations’. Every school, it says, should offer ‘an environment of trust, calmness, and openness, particularly where there are cases that require time and careful discernment’ in order ‘to provide a patient and understating ear, far removed from any unjust discrimination’.
THE CHURCH AT SEA
Cruise Chaplains Greg Watts
Most of us are probably familiar with the idea of chaplains in prisons, hospitals, and schools, but we night not realise that chaplains can also be found on cruise ships. It’s not such an odd concept when you consider that a cruise ship resembles a small town. The largest ones can carry up to 5,000 passengers. On board you’ll find shops and restaurants, theatres and cinemas, gyms, and even libraries.
In recent years, Stella Maris, the Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) has been working with P&0 to provide chaplains to many of its ships. Typically, a chaplain will be on board over the Christmas and Easter periods. However, the chaplain is not there primarily for the passengers, but for the crew, which can number 1,200 on the larger vessels. And many of those working on cruise ships are Catholics, with the majority coming from the Philippines and the Kerala and Goa regions of India. So what exactly does a chaplain do on a cruise ship? Fr Giorgio Miles served on the Arcadia over Christmas and the New Year during its two-week voyage from Southampton to the Caribbean. Before joining a cruise ship, he always arranges for a poster with his photo, contact details, and Mass times to go up on crew noticeboards. ‘I always wear my clerical collar when on board. Liaison with the HR manager as well as the entertainment office ensures good communications. There is always one crew member who leads and makes sure the crew Masses are known about and everything is ready,’ he explained. An average day on a cruise ship for Fr Giorgio might include mixing with passengers in the mornings on deck, popping into the medical centre to talk to staff and anyone who is unwell, and celebrating Mass in the crew mess late at night when the restaurant and cabin staff have finished work. His task is to be seen and be available. 10
‘A great place to meet the crew is in the self-service restaurant. Because they are always busy, these encounters are very brief but important,’ said Fr Tom Grufferty, who served as chaplain on the Britannia. ‘In the lead up to Christmas, I made it known that I would be available for a chat, confessions or for prayer from 4.30 pm to 5.30 pm. This was taken up by about 12 people. I spent several hours during the entire cruise counselling an officer who had several issues with the Catholic faith. We have kept in contact since.’ Fr Neil Ritchie made his first cruise last year, when he celebrated Holy Week on the Azura in the Mediterranean. It was a very different experience from his role as a university chaplain in Liverpool, he said. ‘Above the thrumming of the engines beneath, and the clatter of crockery from the cafeteria next door, we’d celebrate our Holy Week or Easter Masses. In the morning I’d celebrate Mass for the passengers, this time in one of meeting rooms in the hotel side of the ship.’ The Triduum celebrations on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Saturday night were open to both passengers and crew and took place in the plush Meridian restaurant. ‘Additionally, I would be available at set times in the crew’s lounge for anyone who wanted to come and see me, for confession; or just to have a chat. But many conversations took place more informally in the crew mess, maybe over curry or fish stew and rice, or in corridors around the ship in a few moments snatched from their busy routines.’ Working on a cruise ship might sound glamorous, but the reality is long shifts, hard work, low pay, and being away from your family for months at a time. ‘I would hear about their joys and hopes, see cherished pictures of their children, and maybe hear about their worries and concerns, which can be all the greater when separated from home by thousands of miles of sea,’ said Father Neil. ‘For many of the crew, their faith is a vital part of life, and it is a sacrifice for them to work at sea when the chance to celebrate Mass is infrequent.’ On Sea Sunday (July 14) the Church asks us to support the work of AoS. Apart from supplying chaplains to cruise ships, AoS operates teams of chaplains and volunteer ship visitors who provide practical help and pastoral care to seafarers visiting ports around the British coast. AoS has a vital role to play, said Father Neil. ‘I have only really become aware recently of the many people who live and work at sea, not just in cruise ships, but also on cargo ships or fishing boats in conditions that are difficult and often dangerous – yet on whom our economy and so much in our lives depend.’ For further information, visit www.apostleshipofthesea.org Oremus
July – August 2019
NEW BROTHERS AND SISTERS
Entering the Church Laura ‘Yes, Father, no problem.’ No sooner had I responded to Fr Rajiv’s email asking if I would prepare a testimony for Oremus, than a feeling of dread came over me. I spent the next few days worrying about how I could make mine as interesting and thoughtful as the wonderful accounts given by my RCIA classmates in last month's edition. I then began to think up credible excuses as to why I would no longer have the time. As I sat in front of my laptop, with eyes beginning to irritate after staring far too long at a blank screen, I realised this was the same fear that held me back from becoming a Catholic for such a long time. My parents are unapologetically atheist, despite both having a religious upbringing, my father’s family being Jewish and my mother's Catholic. My extended families on both sides retain a strong faith and on more than one occasion a Bar Mitzvah and a First Holy Communion would fall on the same Saturday! As a child, these events were fascinating to me, watching how people worshipped and what it all meant. God was absent at home, yet I was aware of his presence from a young age. One of my earliest memories is being on a family holiday in York and visiting the magnificent York Minster and asking many questions. Visiting a church became a regular feature of our holidays and by the time I was 10, I’d dragged my bemused parents around most of Europe's major cathedrals as well as a tiny church in rural Portugal with donkeys tied up outside. At the age of 11, I ended up attending a Catholic secondary school (according to my parents, purely because it occupied a desirable spot in the league tables!). I grew up in the west of Scotland, where to be Catholic is as much a cultural and political identity as it is a religious one. The probing question whenever you meet someone is to find out which school 12
they attended, whether they were baptised or not. Sectarianism still rears its head from time to time and in our school uniforms we often faced antiCatholic jibes on the bus. Whilst the world outside of school often seemed devoid of any Christian values, inside school all the questions I’d had about God were being answered through attending Mass every week with my class. Our wonderful chaplain, Fr Joe, seemed to have an explanation for everything and was probably the only adult at school who never received any backchat from pupils (there was one really scary dinner lady who probably didn't, either). By the time I left school, I knew that I wanted to be a Catholic. Having the courage to say so, publicly exposing my deeply personal faith, was still a few years off, however. When I say a few, I mean nine. For nine years I had sat at the back of the Cathedral, present at Mass but not fully a part of it. Each year in September, I would compose an email shortly before the start of the RCIA classes, but only last year did I find the courage to hit the send button. It turned out that sending that email was the hardest part of my journey. You might think that being in front of a packed Cathedral to be baptised and confirmed by the Cardinal at the Easter Vigil would be pretty nerve-racking, but it wasn’t; I was there with my friends. The people who were strangers to me at the first RCIA class, those with whom I'd nervously exchanged small talk over drinks and nibbles, were now my friends, my brothers and sisters in faith, whose strength and courage inspire me to find my own. Jenny People often ask me why I have become a Catholic … I grew up in the West Country and went to a Church of England school. My mother was raised as a Catholic and my father
does not belong to any faith, but has a sense of God. They gave me free reign when it came to my faith. Around the age of seven, I told my mother that I would like to become a Catholic. She appreciated the seriousness of this commitment and said to me that I should ask her again when I was older. Through school, I went to church at Christmas and Easter and a local minister regularly attended assemblies, so I have always had a basic understanding of Christianity but no conscious relationship with God. At university, I attended some Christian Society events. I occasionally went to church but, for whatever reason, it did not stick. At law school and when training as a solicitor in Hong Kong, I tried to explore my faith further, meeting with different people and attending different churches, from the traditional to the more modern evangelical. In my 20s, I promised myself that, as a New Year’s resolution, I would understand my faith. Last summer, walking to work, I looked up and noticed for the first time there was a church tucked away in a small street in the City; and when I hit Google to find the closest Catholic Church near my office and it turned out to be this one. It felt like fate (and, in hindsight, God's work)! I marched to the church and paused nervously at the back. As I was about to leave, I bumped into Fr Chris and I told him that I wanted to become a Catholic; he suggested that I speak to Fr Andrew. He provided me with reading material about Catholicism, the Mass, and Lectio divina. I zipped through it all; and what struck me was that Catholicism is about friendship and love: our friendship with God, with our family and friends. It is pure and simple. I continued to meet with Fr Andrew and we touched on a number of topics, from the Eucharist to others that seemed more challenging. I feared that letting God into my life would be difficult, but it was not. Striving Oremus
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to love was ultimately beautiful to me. Attending Mass, I found it different to the Anglican services that I had previously attended. People are respectful: genuflecting and acknowledging the body of Christ. Mass is interactive: acknowledging one's sins, proclaiming one's faith, praying to Our Lady, along with standing and kneeling, one could not help but pay attention! Mass is a celebration: the incense, the choir and the reverence of the setting. For me Mass is magical, mysterious and wonderful. After my meetings with Fr Andrew, I signed up for the RCIA group at the Cathedral. Sometimes it was a struggle to juggle work and the weekly
sessions, however I have enjoyed the programme, learning a lot more about Catholicism, making new friends and, more importantly, acknowledging that Catholicism is right for me. It has also been the opportunity that I needed to set myself straight and realign my priorities; work is important, but I recognise that: ‘it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of Heaven’, a verse of scripture that truly resonates with me. So, why have I become a Catholic? Despite some scepticism and some confused looks, I am a Catholic because it simply feels right and because the root of my faith is about love and my relationship with God. Therefore, what other reason do I need?
HOLY LAND NEWS
The Offerings for the Eucharist are presented at the Easter Vigil Mass
© Phil Goodson, Simply Photography
The Holy Spirit’s Descent at Pentecost
The Day of Pentecost being fully come, Confirmation candidates from both the parish and Westminster School assembled in the Cathedral to receive the Sacrament at the hands of Cardinal Vincent. Fr Julio has looked after parish preparation, whilst Fr John heads down Victoria Street to Dean’s Yard for the School’s candidates, who come mostly from local parishes, Hammersmith being the furthest away. The Cathedral has a good friend in the Rev Gavin Williams, Chaplain at Westminster School (seen second from left), who facilitates arrangements, including twice-termly Masses, there and provides warm encouragement and support to the Catholic pupils. July – August 2019
COMPARE AND CONTRAST
The view south from the Cathedral Tower, as published in the August 1919 Westminster Cathedral Chronicle
The same view from the Tower in June 2019
July – August 2019
COMPARE AND CONTRAST
The South Bank is Rising Fr John Scott
Publication of the view south from the Cathedral Tower in the August 1919 Cathedral Chronicle caused me to pick up the camera and head for the lift. The contrast between colour and black and white is far from the only difference in the images. A century’s development of London, most obviously south of the river, is quite breathtaking, although much of it is very recent. The number of cranes visible in the 2019 view is evidence of that. Writing in 1919, Edwin H Burton notes that: ‘there seems at first sight but little of interest. The Crystal Palace, that interesting survival of Victorian dreams and aspirations which was designed as a temple of the arts of peace and survived to be of good service in the “Great War”, stands out on the horizon over an unlovely foreground of huddled-up streets’. In the 2019 view, the radio mast which stands in the Palace’s place can still be seen. Burton refers dismissively to ‘the steeples of a few uninteresting modern churches’. He may be referring to those in the distance, although the most obvious, slightly to the right of the picture and slightly above centre, is George Edmund Street’s church of St James the Less on the Vauxhall Bridge Road. That is now Grade I listed and described in the current edition of Pevsner’s Buildings of England as ‘one of the finest Gothic Revival churches anywhere’. Francis Street, of course, now lacks the fields and crops that it sheltered in 1919, although the roof of the Windsor Castle pub can be seen in both views. Nowadays the Administrator of the Cathedral is able to enjoy a variety of plants potted up on his roof terrace, but roof gardens were clearly not in vogue with the clergy a century ago.
our illustration – but which must have its interest for every Catholic – Lambeth Palace with its long memories of the Archbishops of Canterbury in Catholic days, from Bl Boniface of Savoy, who built the chapel, down to Cardinal Pole, who died there in 1558, the last of the successors of St Augustine. It was the home of English Cardinals and Archbishops as Westminster is in our own time, and through the See of Peter its traditions and inheritance now live in our Cathedral’.
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Burton notes that the older name for the district was Tothill Fields and: ‘the locality was the scene of no little fighting, public and private .. The last duel in Tothill Fields took place in 1711 when Sir Cholmley Dering fought Mr Thornhill with sword and pistol, “their pistols so near that their muzzles touched,” and Thornhill, who was to have been married the following week, was killed at the first shot [the reaction of his fiancée is not recorded]. A sad association with the district is that it was the burial place of 1,200 Scottish prisoners taken at the battle of Worcester and brought to London where they remained in captivity till death, and Tothill Fields claimed their bodies and the churchwardens of Westminster paid one Thomas Wright 30 shillings for 67 loads of gravel laid on their graves. Pepys in his Diary tells us that the bodies of some who died in the Plague in 1664 were also buried here. Next the place became noted for a pleasure resort with a maze which Aubrey says: “was much frequented in the summer time on fair afternoons”. Before leaving the south view from the Tower’, says Burton, ‘our eyes must rest on a spot which is just missed by July – August 2019
The Choir that Never Was Patrick Rogers
The apse provides a spacious area for the choir. The rear row of the stalls comfortably accommodates ten men on each side, with room for eight boys on the front. The other boys use the music stands in the centre of the image. The envisaged Benedictine community of 20+ monks would have enjoyed ample room for their performance of the liturgy.
When visitors are taken up behind the high altar into the apse, where the choir sings, they see a little balcony on either side, each decorated with twin marble columns and glittering mosaic. Not surprisingly, they ask who uses them. The short answer is that they contain electrical equipment and are otherwise unused. But for their original purpose we have to go back over 120 years. Cardinal Vaughan, founder of the Cathedral, came from a recusant family and had a strong sense of history. Right from the first he saw the new building as a means of providing the congregation with the Divine Office in its entirety, a practice long since abandoned as part of public worship in this country. The body he chose to carry this out were English Benedictine monks, expelled from Westminster Abbey at the Reformation, for, in addition to their return appealing to his sense of history, he believed that no other body of men could present the Divine Liturgy so reverently and effectively. 16
Thus it was that when J F Bentley, the Cathedral architect, started work in 1895 his plans included a Benedictine monastery, a large chapel for the monks and an extensive area behind the altar for a Benedictine choir. Meanwhile, as the first step in bringing the monks back to London, in May 1896 Vaughan contacted Downside Abbey and offered them a mission at Ealing (to the indignation of the incumbent priest, who refused to leave). The new Benedictine monastery would serve both the pastoral needs of local Catholics and provide a community of monks on which the Cathedral could draw when the time came. Downside accepted his proposals, the monastery of St Benedict, Ealing was founded in 1897 and building started two years later. And so the Cardinal began to get second thoughts. English Benedictines were unusual in that they did not live a truly monastic life, but were at that time bound by a missionary oath to work in a pastoral capacity in their missions or parishes. Almost inevitably such work would lead to clashes Oremus
July â€“ Augustâ€†2019
CATHEDRAL HISTORY with the secular clergy if it took place at the Cathedral. Were there any other Benedictines who could sing the Divine Office without being bound to a missionary commitment? Thus it was that Cardinal Vaughan took the surprising step of offering the position already offered to English Benedictines to the French Benedictines of Solesmes Abbey, who were truly monastic and also renowned for their plainsong. The response of Solesmes was favourable. They envisaged a French-controlled monastery at Westminster with rooms for 30 French monks. But for the first year of a three-year trial period, they could supply only about 15, not all of them with good voices. Could the English Benedictines help by bringing the number up to 20? Thus in late 1900 Vaughan was forced to return to the English Benedictines to ask them to assist in the establishment of a French Benedictine community at Westminster Cathedral. The proposal was regarded as an insult. In February 1901 the President The whitewashed bridge passage up of the General from the Long Corridor divides into two Chapter of English just before the apse is entered from the rear, to enable a stately processional Benedictines wrote entry into the two sides of the choir. to Vaughan refusing to countenance foreign Benedictines at Westminster. Without such agreement Vaughan knew that he could not proceed and regretfully wrote to the French accordingly. In an attempt to defuse the ill-feeling which the issue had by now engendered, both between English and French Benedictines and between them and the secular clergy, the Benedictine President suggested that secular priests should undertake the liturgy at the Cathedral and that a Choir School be formed. And so, with a mixture of regret and relief, Vaughan abandoned his plan for a return of Benedictine monks to Westminster and turned to the secular clergy. At the Diocesan Synod of 1901 he announced the change of plan and called on them to provide the high standard of church music required. At the same time the formation of a choir school was announced. The response was enthusiastic. On Ascension Day 1902 the entire Divine Office and High Mass were sung for the first time by the new choir of the Cathedral. The friction which had arisen between Benedictines and secular clergy over the issue gradually dissipated and in 1976 George Basil Hume, Benedictine Abbot of Ampleforth, was appointed Archbishop of Westminster. Four years later, to commemorate the 1,500th anniversary of St Benedict’s birth, more than 400 Benedictine monks and nuns attended a special Mass in the Cathedral, afterwards walking to Westminster Abbey to sing Vespers. July – August 2019
So what remains today of Vaughan’s romantic dream? Ealing Abbey became a Priory in 1916 and an Abbey in 1995 and serves a large parish. A school, started in 1902, caters for some 1,083 pupils. In the Cathedral, it is to Vaughan’s plan for a Benedictine choir that we owe the excellent acoustics from the raised, six-windowed retro-choir behind the high altar, designed to provide the space and light needed for the monks to sing the Divine Office. At the back, and still used, are twin oak doors for the monks to process along a bridge and along the Cloisters (now the Long Corridor) to the Monastery (now the Choir School). And the two little balconies, glittering with mosaic? Attractive in themselves, they provide a perfect view of the retro-choir below while allowing any occupant to remain unseen from public gaze. That on the right (liturgical south) side is a two-minute walk from Archbishop’s House, via the Library and Long Corridor. I suggest that it was for the use of Cardinal Vaughan, who was devoted to the Divine Office, but loath to cause distraction by appearing in public. The balcony on the left (liturgical north) side is necessary for symmetry and could also have been used by senior visitors and perhaps Benedictines not directly involved in the liturgy below.
In the southern gallery the roundel of the Holy Cross sits above the Greek letters Alpha and Omega, recalling Christ, 'the beginning and the end’.
Images of the Holy Cross predominate in the mosaics of the galleries. In the northern gallery, a roundel shows the cross surrounded by the books of the gospels. The effect of decades of incense rising are rather visible on the adjacent marble.
Mini Vinnies Mini Vinnies? Who are they? The short answer is that they are children aged between 7 to 11 (or younger) who, with the permission of their parents and the support of their schools, are encouraged to embark on their first steps as possible 'Vincentians for life’, members of the Society of
St Vincent de Paul. Having not seen them in the Cathedral before, we were impressed to find 800 of them from 36 schools across the country, even as far as Middlesborough. Bishop Paul McAleenan presided at a lively Mass, concluding with the Mini Vinnie song.
Praying for Paris The Cathedral is blessed to have a mosaic of St Joan of Arc, which has come into its own in these last months as a focus of prayer for the Archbishop, clergy and faithful of the Archdiocese of Paris and particularly for the community at the Cathedral of Notre Dame. The restoration of that Cathedral after the fire will be a prolonged undertaking and we are grateful to all who continue to light candles and to pray. Seen here with Bishop Nicholas Hudson is a recent visitor, Archbishop Robert Le Gall OSB of the Archdiocese of Toulouse, who expressed his gratitude for the expression of the Cathedral’s solidarity with our French counterparts.
A Hitherto Hidden Talent The performance of the Messe Solennelle by the blind Parisian organist and composer Jean Langlais (1907-1991) requires, in the apse of the Cathedral, a conductor, an organist and a page turner. It also requires the use of both the Apse and Grand organs and a volunteer at the console of the latter to carry out certain mechanical functions to achieve effects of crescendo and diminuendo at crucial moments – let us call him the Operations Manager. The Mass appearing recently on the music list for the Sunday 10.30am Mass, the editor of Oremus was volunteered for this managerial role and is seen here in rehearsal.
July – August 2019
Half an Hour in 40 Hours
© Diocese of Westminster
The Quarant’Ore is continuing whilst Oremus is preparing to go to print. Among this morning’s visitors to the Blessed Sacrament were the boys of the Choir School, their usual Mass being replaced by this different form and experience of devotion to the Lord. Perhaps a particular benefit of stillness before the Blessed Sacrament on this occasion was the chance to be calm and collected before the school exams which were to follow.
Deacons on the Way The Ordination season began on Saturday 15 June with three men being ordained as Deacons for the diocese, with the intention and hope that they will proceed to priesthood. Axcel Soriano, David Knight and Adam Dora are pictured with Bishop John Wilson, himself shortly to become Archbishop of Southwark. The day had a particular significance for the Cathedral Choir, as David is himself a former Lay Clerk. Adam and Axcel go to full-time placements in parishes for the coming year, whilst David finishes his studies at Allen Hall seminary and undertakes a weekend parish placement.
July – August 2019
© Neil McLaughlan
Chloe Placencia of the Cathedral congregation recently spent her ninth birthday in an unusual way, giving food to homeless people in the area, spending time with them and also helping with their animals. ‘In the future’, she said,'I want to be a vet and look after animals like dogs’. Her action attracted the notice of her teachers, who nominated her for a £1,000 award from the charity Just Enough, which works across London schools encouraging social awareness. We offer our congratulations on the award, which Chloe is using for her school, her family and the Cathedral, for which we offer grateful thanks.
A NEW PILGRIMAGE
Seeking St Augustine Bernadette Kehoe
© Simon Burchell
to get their ’pilgrim passport’ stamped. Sr Walburga explains that: ‘We had a lovely couple here the other day doing the Camino. They were radiant, despite the wet weather and such a joy to meet’.
The Benedictine nuns at Minster still live in some of the old Abbey buildings
Visits to a number of religious congregations are included in the newly developed ’Augustine Camino’ – a pilgrimage route through Kent – which is a project of St Augustine’s Shrine Church in Ramsgate. The walk, designed with the famous Spanish Camino de Santiago in mind, begins at the Anglican Rochester Cathedral and wends its way to Ramsgate via Canterbury, stopping off at parishes along the way, as a means of being authentic to the spirit of pilgrimage from the medieval era. Walkers will encounter three congregations of Religious along the route: Carmelites, Benedictines and Vincentians, and it is also an ecumenical experience, taking in the Cathedrals at Rochester and Canterbury. Andrew Kelly, founder of the walk and a worshipper at St Augustine’s, explains: ‘The original pilgrimage to Canterbury was to the Shrine of St Augustine and the Augustine Camino leads to the new Shrine of St Augustine in Ramsgate. The re-emergence of pilgrimage infrastructure in England has been a gradual process starting in the early 19th century. Medieval pilgrims would have visited monasteries and shrines along their route which were run by Religious orders. It is now possible 20
to re-establish this experience, often in the original buildings, and it is this that has informed the route of the Augustine Camino. Hence the visits to Aylesford Priory and the shrine of St Jude (run by the Carmelites) and Minster abbey, which is a Benedictine Convent’. The Prior of Aylesford, Fr Francis Kemsley, has noticed an increase in the number of people passing through on foot and comments that for some, who are burdened by difficult problems in life, the Camino offers spiritual solace and a release: ‘We are just a mile away from the Pilgrims Way – the ancient route from Winchester and London to Canterbury. Over the last few years it is very noticeable that a lot more people are walking the modern Camino; there's a sense of pilgrimage – a reminder that people are leaving their everyday concerns. And I like to think that a shrine is a place where heaven and earth meet’. Minster was the site of an important monastery in the Middle Ages. In 1937 Benedictine nuns fleeing Nazi persecution refounded the community and dedicated it with a Shrine to St Mildred and the Sisters continue to thrive. The Camino brings them into direct contact with walkers who arrive
Arriving in Canterbury, pilgrims pass Eastbridge hospital, an old pilgrim hospice now run by Anglican Franciscans as an almshouse. The Franciscan Gardens are at the rear of Eastbridge and are a haven of peace; they are the grounds of the first Franciscan settlement in the UK and are a Scheduled Ancient Monument. In the 20th century a Franciscan movement, the Society of Saint Francis, grew within the Anglican Church and the establishment of a Franciscan house in 2003 saw the Franciscan Brothers return once again to the site. Another newly arrived community are the Vincentian Canons of Kerala, who follow the Syro-Malabar rite of the Catholic Church; they have installed themselves in Ramsgate and now conduct a busy ministry giving retreats. Andrew Kelly explains: ‘There is a lovely story about how they came to be in Ramsgate. When the previous occupants of the Abbey, the Benedictine monks, decided that they could not manage the upkeep of the building any more, there was a possibility that it would be put to secular use. The mother of the then Parish Priest, Fr Marcus Holden, prayed that a religious use would be found. Some visiting Missionaries of Charity noticed that the building was for sale and mentioned it to the Vincentians, who happened to be looking for a base for a retreat centre’. They have thrived Within a short period of time their work has expanded; there is a retreat nearly every weekend and events during the week, with around 150 people attending each session from all over the South and the Midlands. The Administrator of the Shrine of St Augustine, Fr Simon Heans, commented: ‘The Vincentian presence, as well as enabling the Abbey to survive as an Oremus
July – August 2019
A NEW PILGRIMAGE/AN INTERN’S FAREWELL
A Unique Vantage Point Oliver Delargy ecclesiastical building, is of enormous benefit to the parish. Parishioners have been drawn into their retreat sessions and have become volunteers helping to administer them in some cases. In the other direction, retreatants come to the Shrine to learn about St Augustine and to venerate the relic which we have. Permanent staff from there often come to Mass and Confession at the Shrine during the week. The priests of the Shrine and 'the Divine', as the Divine Retreat Centre is known, support each other with cover for Masses and Confessions. Parishioners have been encouraged by the youth and the fervour of the visitors to the Divine, who can be guaranteed to turn out in force for any event organised at St Augustine’s, especially if it is an outdoor procession. We consider that we are very lucky to have such a vibrant worshipping community on our doorstep’. The Divine website sums up the impact that these new missionaries – following in the footsteps of St Augustine – are having: ‘It is quite remarkable! The arrival of the Vincentians fitted perfectly with the history of Ramsgate, as this was where the first preaching took place, and where the first retreat was made for the English. The charism of St Augustine lives on through the ministry of the Vincentian congregation, its preaching, and charitable works’.
It’s been one of the great privileges of my life to have been able to serve as the Intern here at Westminster Cathedral for the past two years. But what exactly does the Cathedral Intern do? Primarily it has been to act as the Assistant to the Sub-Administrator, with particular charge for the liturgical rotas which keeps our busy daily timetable running smoothly. I have also been able to work closely with the other Cathedral Chaplains, staff and volunteers in multiple roles, as many of you have probably seen. Before I go, I thought it would be good to share with the readers of Oremus some of my particular highlights and how living and working here has impacted on me over the past two years. One of the key things you become aware of here is that you are part of a living tapestry of English Catholic history which is continuing to unfold. Many of those who have worked here with dedication for many years have often delighted in telling me stories of Papal and Royal visits, as well as cherished anecdotes involving former Chaplains and Archbishops. I am an avid lover of history and have very much enjoyed listening to these stories, which has made my sense of being part of a living continuity more vivid. I’ve also shared in history being made, such as preparing for and participating in
Cardinal Cormac’s Funeral Mass during my first fortnight and representing the Cathedral along with other parishioners at the Adoremus Eucharistic Congress in Liverpool last September. It’s tricky to try and sum up what living and working in the Cathedral has meant to me. Like a good retreat, I think the grace I have received here will only become more visible as time goes on. And yet I can say that it has been in the various ways in which my faith has been nourished that has meant the most to me. Following on from my experiences in Lourdes, seeing how much the Cathedral means to everyone who comes here for healing and life through the Sacraments has had a profound impact on me. That sense of unity between us all as the Mystical Body of Jesus has become deeply engrained in me and that is something I will carry as I move on in my own journey of faith. A final word has to go to the College of Chaplains, to whom I am deeply grateful for their example and friendship. I am also delighted in the many friends I have been able to make amongst my colleagues and fellow parishioners. And thanks be to God, who has given me the great gift of being able to see that he continues his redeeming work in this sacred space. As the Pope recently said to young Catholics in his latest Apostolic Exhortation, Christus vivit!
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July – August 2019
Cathedral History: A Pictorial Record Mass for ‘Verdun’ Sunday and the Inauguration of the Grand Organ
Paul Tobin The Battle of Verdun, the longest battle in war history (February to December 1916) marked a turning part in the First World War, as it prevented a further German advance on the Western Front in a place that was of great sentimental value to France. There were many casualties on both sides; approximately 377,000 French and 330,000 German soldiers died in the conflict. It was not surprising that with memory so fresh in public consciousness, this particular Sunday, 2 July 1922, was dedicated as a memorial to all those who had died in that battle. This also happened to be the day when the Grand Organ was inaugurated by M Marcel Dupré, the celebrated organist and composer who had travelled from Paris, only arriving at the Cathedral shortly before the Mass. This left no time for him to try out the instrument beforehand. ‘At two minutes to noon the Master of Music, the Very Rev Vernon Russell, came to the console and said “His Eminence is about to enter the nave in procession. Will you play the Marche Pontificale by Widor?” which he did - of course from memory. The effect was described as electrifying and stupendous(1)’. 22
In Bentley’s plans for the Cathedral, the organ was to have been situated in the tribunes above the sanctuary, but Dupré was instrumental in having the Grand Organ situated at the west end of the Cathedral, as is the case for the Grand Orgue seen throughout France, with the organ in the apse being used solely for accompanying the singing by the choir. According to the Cardinal’s engagements for July published in the Chronicle, he spent much of the first three days of that month in the Cathedral; he assisted at High Mass on Saturday 1 July (being the Feast of the Precious Blood, the titular feast). On the Sunday, in addition to assisting at the midday ‘Verdun’ Mass, he received the Children’s Offerings at 4.30pm and attended an organ recital given by Dupré at 6pm and, finally, attended the second recital by Dupré on the Monday evening.
(1) The Organs of Westminster Cathedral, Stanley Webb and Nicolas Kynaston; The Musical Times vol. 126, no. 1707, May 1985 Oremus
July – August 2019
L’Arche Lived Out Louise Sage
from a Protestant background, she was received into the Catholic Church in the November before entering L’Arche in 1980 at the age of 35. A number of visits to L’Arche Daybreak and other community houses followed, so that she could have a really good idea of what living there involved. She undertook a trial period and a one year’s commitment before entering permanently, initially receiving $250 a month after deduction for room and board.
Accidental Friends - Stories from my life in L’Arche Community Beth Porter; Dartman, Longman & Todd, 275 pp; Paperback ISBN: 978-0-232-53387-3 Beth Porter has, so far, spent almost 40 years of her life living in community as a L’Arche Daybreak assistant in Richmond Hill, Toronto, Canada and has now written this book relating the joys and sorrows of living with people of limited abilities, whilst at the same time leading her deeper into self-knowledge and personal fulfilment. The L’Arche Community was founded in 1964 by Canadian Jean Vanier in response to the treatment that people with learning and intellectual disabilities faced in institutions. Today there are thirty L’Arche communities in Canada and more than 150 around the world. Beth was initially drawn to L’Arche because it was a faith-based community engaged in the work of social justice and by the spirituality and communal vision of Jean Vanier, and she wished to experience life in such a community. Originally an English teacher coming July – August 2019
The Daybreak property at that time, altogether covering 20 acres, had been given to L’Arche by an Order of Missionary Nuns concerned with social justice work, together with a farm which had been leased to them by the Basilian Fathers. In 1982 Beth spent a short time at L’Arche Le Printemps, Quebec but soon discovered that she had a sense of belonging to L’Arche Daybreak and so returned there. Intellectually challenged and able people lived together on the complex. Many came following years in institutions and completely changed when shown they were accepted as people in their own right. Unlike institutions, the various houses featured homely touches: dining room tables all had an attractive centre bowl of flowers and each person had his or her own cloth napkin. At the end of a meal a candle was placed on the table, everyone sat in silence for a short while and then recited the Our Father. Common prayer and community worship were a feature of L’Arche Daybreak which described itself as ‘non-denominational and interfaith’. In time a Snoezlen Room was created in an annexe of one of the houses, where individuals could relax. This offered therapy for people with intellectual disabilities, autism, post-traumatic stress and dementia, and was furnished in such a way that it blocked out noise and bright lighting, providing a multisensory
experience that was soothing, stimulating and promoted a feeling of well-being. Henri Nouwen, priest and a bestselling author and teacher, became a valued assistant cum pastor in L’Arche Daybreak in 1986, dying 10 years later and being buried in the complex grounds. His legacy was to be the New Dayspring Chapel, which he had envisaged and for which he was fundraising when he died. This chapel was opened and blessed in 1999, with Jean Vanier being the guest of honour. The Charter of L’Arche states that: ‘Each community member is encouraged to discover and deepen his or her spiritual life and live it according to his or her particular faith and tradition’. During her time at L’Arche Daybreak, Beth took a Theology degree and also studied Jewish traditions. One chapter describes how she prepared two Jewish members of the community, Ellen and Mel, to make their Bat Mitzvah and Bar Mitzvah celebrations respectively well into adulthood. Accidental Friends is an inspirational read, and shows how much Beth Porter cared for and was involved with all the L’Arche Daybreak community past and present and indeed how much they have given to her. The lives of members are shown to be fulfilling, caring and creative, through activities such as painting, cooking, farm work, woodworking etc. and there are 32 photographs, featuring Francis with his love of Holstein cows, Mike, Annie, Peggy, Thelus, Michael and his brother Adam, and so many more. The book was written at the beginning of 2019, with Jean Vanier, who had just celebrated his 90th birthday, providing the Foreword. With his death on 7 May this year, Accidental Friends is now appropriately a fitting tribute to his life. 23
JULY and AUGUST
St John Eudes (1601-1670, feast day 19 August) spent all of his life in Northern France. Resisting parental pressure to marry, he joined the Congregation of the Oratory and spent nearly 20 years establishing a reputation as a preacher and missioner, whilst not neglecting service of the victims of several outbreaks of plague. In 1643 he left the Oratory and founded an Order of Sisters to be devoted to the rehabilitation of fallen women. Unable to obtain papal approval for a corresponding congregation for men, he devoted himself to the founding of seminaries and to propagation of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, devotions that remain powerful for us today. St John Eudes in St Peter’s Basilica, Rome
Tuesday 9 July
The Months of
July and August Holy Father’s Prayer Intention: July - Evangelisation That those who administer justice may work with integrity, and that the injustice which prevails in the world may not have the last word. August – Universal That families, through their life of prayer and love, become ever more clearly ‘schools of true human growth’.
Monday 1 July
DEDICATION OF THE CATHEDRAL (1910) 5pm Solemn Second Vespers 5.30pm Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Palestrina – Missa Papae Marcelli Malcolm – Terribilis est locus iste Mawby – Ave verum corpus Organ: Vierne – Carillon de Westminster
Tuesday 2 July
Ps Week 1
ST THOMAS, Apostle
Thursday 4 July
Feria (St Elizabeth of Portugal) Friday Abstinence
Feria (St Anthony Zaccaria)
Saturday 6 July
St Maria Goretti, Virgin & Martyr 2pm Knights of St Columba Centenary Thanksgiving Mass (Cardinal Nichols) 6pm Adult Confirmation at Mass; Victoria Choir sings (Bishop Sherrington)
Sunday 7 July
Ps Week 2 14th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 9am Family Mass 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir, Choristers’ music choice) F Martin – Messe Palestrina – Populum humilem Mawby – Ave verum corpus Organ: Guillou – Saga VI 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Swayne – Magnificat octavi toni Elgar – Give unto the Lord Organ: Widor – Final (symphonie VI) 4.30pm Mass for the Deaf Service (Cathedral Hall) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Peter Stevens (Westminster Cathedral)
Monday 8 July Feria 24
Wednesday 10 July
Feria 10.30am, 12.30 and 1.05pm Masses in Cathedral Hall 11am Good Shepherd Mass (Bishop Sherrington) 2pm Good Samaritan Mass (Bishop McAleenan) 5.30pm Patrons of the Sick and Retired Priests Fund attend Mass (Cardinal Nichols)
Thursday 11 July
ST BENEDICT, Abbot, Patron of Europe 5.30pm Education Service attends Mass (Bishop Wilson)
Friday 12 July
Saturday 13 July
Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday (St Henry) 4pm Extraordinary Form Mass (Lady Chapel)
Sunday 14 July
Wednesday 3 July
Friday 5 July
St Augustine Zhao Rong and Companions, Martyrs
Ps Week 3 15th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 9.30am-1.30pm SVP Book Sale (Cathedral Hall) 10.30am Solemn Mass (Men’s voices) De Monte – Missa Benedicta es Victoria – Vadam et circuibo civitatem Victoria – Qualis est dilectus meus Organ: Buxtehude – Praeludium in C (BuxWV 137) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Suriano – Magnificat septimi toni Byrd – O salutaris hostia Organ: Buxtehude – Ciacona in Cminor (BuxWV 159) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Michael Butterfield (Royal Hospital, Chelsea & King’s College, London)
Monday 15 July
St Bonaventure, Bishop & Doctor
Tuesday 16 July
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
Wednesday 17 July
Feria 10am and 2.30pm St Mary’s University Graduation Ceremony 10.30am: Mass cancelled; 12.15-1.45 and 5-6pm only: Confessions
Thursday 18 July
Feria 10am and 2.30pm St Mary’s University Graduation Ceremony 10.30am: Mass cancelled; 12.15-1.45 and 5-6pm only: Confessions
Friday 19 July
Saturday 20 July Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday (St Apollinaris, Bishop & Martyr) 2.30pm Pontifical High Mass (Bishop Campbell, for the Latin Mass Society) Sunday 21 July Ps Week 4 16TH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass (Men’s voices) Palestrina – Missa Ut re mi fa sol la Palestrina – Iustitiae Domini Organ: Tournemire – Supplication et Fugue Modale (L’Orgue Mystique XXXIV) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Ruffo – Magnificat quarti toni Victoria – Dixit Dominus Organ: Dupré – Intermezzo (Symphonie II) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Joseph Wicks (Truro Cathedral) Monday 22 July
ST MARY MAGDALENE
Tuesday 23 July
ST BRIDGET OF SWEDEN, Patron of Europe
Wednesday 24 July
Feria (St Sharbel Makhluf, Priest) 7.30pm Grand Organ Festival Recital: Matthias Havinga (Amsterdam)
Thursday 25 July
ST JAMES, Apostle
Friday 26 July
Friday Abstinence Ss Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Saturday 27 July
Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday 10.30am Mass of Ordination to the Priesthood (Cardinal Nichols) 6pm Visiting Choir at Mass: St Mary of the Assumption, Delaware, USA
Sunday 28 July
Ps Week 1 17th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass (Men’s voices) Victoria – Missa Gaudeamus Victoria – Laudate Dominum Organ: J S Bach, tr. Guillou – Ricercar a 6 (Musical Offering) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Suriano – Magnificat octavi toni Lassus – Omnia tempus habent Organ: J S Bach – Passacaglia (BWV 582) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Jonathan Allsopp (Westminster Cathedral)
Monday 29 July St Martha
Tuesday 30 July
Feria (St Peter Chrysologus, Bishop & Doctor) 8am-6pm NHS Blood Transfusion Service in Cathedral Hall Oremus
July – August 2019
DIARY AND NOTICES Wednesday 31 July
Saturday 17 August
Thursday 1 August
Sunday 18 August
St Ignatius of Loyola, Priest St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop & Doctor
Friday 2 August
Friday Abstinence Feria (St Eusebius of Vercelli, Bishop) (St Peter Julian Eymard, Priest)
Saturday 3 August Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday 11am-3pm Cathedral Summer Fair (Cathedral Hall)
Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday Ps Week 4 20th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass 2-5pm Filipino Club Charity Tea Dance (Cathedral Hall) 4.30pm Solemn Vespers (English) and Benediction
Monday 19 August
Feria (St John Eudes, Priest)
Sunday 4 August Ps Week 2 18th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass 4.30pm Solemn Vespers (English) and Benediction 4.30pm Deaf Service Mass (Cathedral Hall)
Tuesday 20 August
Monday 5 August
The Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Feria (The Dedication of the Basilica of St Mary Major)
St Bernard, Abbot & Doctor
Wednesday 21 August St Pius X, Pope
Thursday 22 August Friday 23 August
THE TRANSFIGURATION OF THE LORD
Friday Abstinence Feria (St Rose of Lima, Virgin) 3pm Vespers: Schola Ste Cécile de Paris (Lady Chapel)
Wednesday 7 August
Saturday 24 August
Tuesday 6 August
Feria (Ss Sixtus II, Pope, & Companions, Martyrs) (St Cajetan, Priest)
Thursday 8 August
St Dominic, Priest
Friday 9 August
Friday Abstinence ST TERESA BENEDICTA OF THE CROSS, Virgin and Martyr, Patron of Europe 6.30pm Pax Christi Ecumenical Service (Crypt)
Saturday 10 August
ST LAWRENCE, Deacon and Martyr 4pm Extraordinary Form Mass (Lady Chapel)
Sunday 11 August
Ps Week 3 19th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass 4.30pm Solemn Vespers (English) and Benediction
Monday 12 August
Feria (St Jane Frances de Chantal)
Tuesday 13 August
Feria (Ss Pontian, Pope, & Hippolytus, Priest, Martyrs)
Wednesday 14 August
St Maximilian Mary Kolbe, Priest & Martyr
Thursday 15 August
THE ASSUMPTION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY Holy Day of Obligation – fulfilled by attendance at the Vigil Mass of Wednesday or today
Friday 16 August
Feria (St Stephen of Hungary) July – August 2019
ST BARTHOLOMEW, Apostle
Sunday 25 August Ps Week 1 21st SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME 10.30am Solemn Mass 4.30pm Solemn Vespers (English) and Benediction Monday 26 August (Bank Holiday) Feria (Blessed Dominic of the Mother of God, Priest) Mass at 10.30am, 12.30 and 5pm only; Confessions 11am-12.30pm Tuesday 27 August St Monica
Wednesday 28 August
St Augustine, Bishop & Doctor 7.30pm Grand Organ Festival Recital: Peter Stevens (Westminster Cathedral)
Thursday 29 August
The Passion of St John the Baptist
Friday 30 August
Friday Abstinence Ss Margaret Clitherow, Anne Line and Margaret Ward, Martyrs
Saturday 31 August
St Aidan, Bishop, and the Saints of Lindisfarne Key to the Diary: Saints’ days and holy days written in BOLD CAPITAL LETTERS denote Sundays and Solemnities, CAPITAL LETTERS denote Feasts, and those not in capitals denote Memorials, whether optional or otherwise. Memorials in brackets are not celebrated liturgically.
What Happens and When
Public Services: The Cathedral opens shortly before the first Mass of the day; doors close at 7.00pm, Monday to Saturday, with occasional exceptions. On Sunday evenings the Cathedral closes after the 7.00pm Mass. On Public and Bank Holidays the Cathedral closes at 5.30pm in the afternoon. Monday to Friday: Masses: 7.00am; 8.00am; 10.30am (Latin, said); 12.30pm; 1.05pm and 5.30pm (Solemn, sung by the Choir). Morning Prayer (Lady Chapel): 7.40am. Evening Prayer (Latin Vespers* sung by the Lay Clerks in the Lady Chapel): 5.00pm (*except Tuesday when it is sung in English). Rosary is prayed after the 5.30pm Mass. Saturday: Masses: 8.00am; 9.00am; 10.30am (Solemn Latin, sung by the Choir); and 12.30pm. Morning Prayer (Lady Chapel): 10.00am. First Evening Prayer of Sunday (Lady Chapel): 5.30pm. First Mass of Sunday: 6.00pm. Sunday: Masses: 8.00am; 9.00am; 10.30am (Solemn, sung by the Choir); 12 noon; 5.30pm; and 7.00pm. Morning Prayer (Lady Chapel) 10.00am. Solemn Vespers and Benediction: 3.30pm. Organ Recital (when scheduled): 4.45pm. Holy Days of Obligation: As Monday-Friday, Vigil Mass (evening of the previous day) at 5.30pm. Public Holidays: Masses: 10.30am, 12.30pm, 5.00pm. Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament: This takes place in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel every Monday to Friday following the 1.05pm Mass, until 4.45pm. Confessions are heard at the following times: Saturday: 10.30am-6.30pm. Sunday: 11.00am1.00pm; and 4.30-7.00pm. Monday-Friday: 11.30am-6.00pm. Public Holidays: 11.00am1.00pm. Sacred Heart Church, Horseferry Road SW1P 2EF: Sunday Mass 11.00am, Weekday Mass Thursday 12.30pm Funerals: Enquiries about arranging a funeral at the Cathedral or Sacred Heart Church, Horseferry Road, should be made to a priest at Cathedral Clergy House in the first instance.
Throughout the Year Mondays: 11.30am: Prayer Group in the Hinsley Room. 6.30pm: Guild of the Blessed Sacrament in the Cathedral Tuesdays: Walsingham Prayer Group in St George’s Chapel 2.30pm on first Tuesday of the month; 6.30pm: The Guild of St Anthony in the Cathedral. Wednesdays: 12.00pm: First Wednesday Quiet Days on the first Wednesday of every month in the Hinsley Room. Thursdays: 1.15pm: Padre Pio Prayer Group at Sacred Heart Church. 6.30pm: The Legion of Mary in Clergy House. Fridays: 5.00pm: Charismatic Prayer Group in the Cathedral Hall – please check in advance for confirmation. Saturdays: 10.00am: Centering Prayer Group in the Hinsley Room. 2.00pm: Justice and Peace Group in the Hinsley Room on the last of the month. 25
THE FRIENDS OF WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL
Registered Charity number 272899
July – August 2019
CROSSWORD AND POEM
The Death of Mary II Rainer Maria Rilke (1875-1926), from a fifteen-poem cycle on the life of the Virgin Mary (Das Marien-Leben, 1912), trans. Knut W. Barde Who had realized that until her arrival the crowded heavens had been incomplete? The risen one had taken his seat, but next to him, for twenty-four years, there was an empty space. And they began already to get used to the pure gap, which seemed to have healed, because with his beautiful spreading radiance the son was filling it.
To submit a poem whether by yourself or another for consideration, please contact the Editor – details on page 3. July – August 2019
Clues Across 1 St Francis -- -----, Patron Saint of writers (2,5) 6 Your, old and in prayer! (3) 8 Greek Island where St Paul’s disciples Jason and Sosipatrus taught the Gospel (5) 9 Sussex town with the Cathedral of Our Lady and St Philip Howard (7) 10 Daily Office of prayer held at the ninth hour traditionally (5) 11 See 25 Across 13 ------ Nevada, name of mountain range in California and Andalucia (6) 15 Long expedition for hunting or exploration (6) 17 Comic opera barber (Rossini) or bridegroom (Mozart) (6) 20 Author of Jerusalem, set to music by Hubert Parry (5) 21 Type of Indulgence that may deliver full remission of sins (7) 23 Town on Corsican coast with St Jean-Baptiste Cathedral, and St Catherine airport (5) 24 River, giving its name to city and cathedral in southern England (3) 25 & 11 Across: Central architectural feature of Trafalgar Square (7,6) Clues Down 1 Road to --------, turning-point in life named after St Paul’s conversion (8) 2 Prophet, giving his name to two of the Historical Books of the OT (6) 3 Jenny ----, opera singer known as ‘The Swedish Nightingale’ (4) 4 Graduated measure, such as that of Beaufort relating to wind strength (5) 5 St Lawrence of --------, Doctor of the Church (’The Apostolic Doctor’) (8) 6 Joseph M. W., major English painter, born in Covent Garden (6) 7 Long-living trees often found in churchyards (4) 12 Missa Papae --------, perhaps Palestrina’s best-known Mass, dedicated to an early Pope (d.308) (8) 14 Torch-bearing servers at High Mass and Missa Cantata (8) 16 Country whose national iconic cathedral was severely damaged by fire in April (6) 18 Saint and early Pope, succeeded by Leo II (6) 19 Country where Garabandal is situated, where Our Lady appeared to four village girls during Vatican II (5) 20 Venerable ----, author of an important work on the early history of the Church in England (4) 22 From which we ask to be delivered in the Pater Noster (4)
© Bibliothèque municipale Stanislas, Nancy
Our Lady’s Assumption painted within a capital letter ‘D’ in a Book of Hours
Alan Frost May 2019
ANSWERS Across: 1 De Sales 6 Thy 8 Corfu 9 Arundel 10 Nones 11 Column 13 Sierra 15 Safari 17 Figaro 20 Blake 21 Plenary 23 Calvi 24 Exe 25 Nelson’s Down: 1 Damascus 2 Samuel 3 Lind 4 Scale 5 Brindisi 6 Turner 7 Yews 12 Marcelli 14 Acolytes 16 France 18 Agatho 19 Spain 20 Bede 22 Evil
Thus, when she entered the heavens, she did not go towards him, despite her strong longing; there was no room, only He was there and shone with a radiance that hurt her. But just now as her moving figure joined with the new blessed ones and stood discreetly, as light with light, next to them, there erupted from her being such an assault of glowing light, that the blinded angel who was illuminated by her cried out: Who is this one? A wonderment arose. Then they all saw how God-Father above shielded our Lord, so that in the mild gloaming the empty spot could now be seen like a small pain, a sense of loneliness, as something he was still bearing, a remnant from his time on earth, a dried up injury-. They watched her; she looked ahead with fear, bent far forward, as if she felt: I am His most enduring pain-; and suddenly broke forth. But the angels took her in their fold and steadied her and sang with blessed voices and carried her up the final steps.
THE FRIENDS OF WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL
Beguiled by the Charms of Hampshire Christina White
© Christina White
for impressive reading. The staff and helpers of the College provided a fascinating tour and Fr John Scott accompanied the group to celebrate Mass in the school chapel. Sombre, dramatic and oh so clever, Winchester College leaves its mark. 100 boys on the current roll are Catholic and we were made to feel most welcome.
Watermeadows near St Cross Hospital
It seemed appropriate to walk to the historic almshouse, given its reputation for restoring the weary traveller with a chunk of bread and a sip of ale. Encountering the building on foot is to approach it the way the pilgrims of old saw it first – across a meadow maybe, with cattle grazing and rabbits darting in the early evening light. It was only on leaving that we realised how close the Hospital is to a busy ‘A’ road; its orientation towards the river and the chalk hills make it a place of gentle solitude. We had been entranced in the morning with the majesty of Winchester College and its impressive treasury. The graffiti alone, names carved with great industry into the ancient timbers of the cloister, make 28
© Christina White
The walk from Winchester to the Hospital of St Cross is a step back in time. A few of the Friends decided to follow the meandering path through the water meadows – others were enticed by the hostelries and cafés of the Cathedral City – and those who set out by foot were rewarded with beautiful countryside in the shadow of St Catherine’s Hill. This area of Hampshire is blessed with the cool, clear water of the chalk lands and we saw young speckled trout in the eddies of the river, and a profusion of waterside plants – bright yellow pops of iris and clouds of cow parsley.
A good crowd turned out for the lovely Alison Weir who came to talk about Anna of Kleve, the wife of Henry VIII who survived and proved herself to be as shrewd in matters of property as in those of the heart. Alison has already written the fifth book in the series and will be back next summer to speak about the ill-fated Katherine Howard. We are currently preparing for the Friends’ trip to Ingatestone on 4 July, there will then be a break for the summer, but please do not forget the Cathedral Summer Fair in August. Mary Maxwell is already collecting donations and gifts for the stalls. As autumn approaches we will be again gearing up for the Christmas Fair – where has the year gone? Enjoy the summer.
The Virgin and Child watch over all who enter and leave Winchester College
The afternoon was dedicated to gentler pursuits and the main enjoyment of the Hospital in its pastoral setting. Despite a glowering sky, we avoided rain and could delight in the beautiful gardens which bear the echoes of an ancient past. The Hospital avoided the worst ravages of the Reformation, being designated as a secular rather than a religious institution, and the site, unharmed by the iconoclasts, shows that lovely evolution of a building through time: the impressive pond is a remnant of the medieval fish pools, with Norman arches and Tudor kitchens mixing the centuries up. The planting was something special. We visited in the wake of the Chelsea Flower Show and it was refreshing to see an oldfashioned garden, as a garden, with blowsy English climbing roses and great swathes of lavender.
Wednesday September 11: Friends’ Tour of the Cathedral and the Tower. The tour will start at 6.30pm with drinks to follow. Tickets £25. Thursday September 12: Henry VIII – The Decline and Fall of a Tyrant. Talk by historian Robert Hutchinson. Cathedral Hall at 7pm. Tickets £10. Tuesday October 1: Friends’ Curry and Quiz Night. Cathedral Hall. Doors open at 6.30pm and the quiz will begin at 6.45pm. Tickets £18 (please note that this replaces the previously advertised Quiz on 24 September).
Contact us • Write to: Friends’ Office, 42 Francis Street, London SW1P 1QW • Call: 020 7798 9059 • Email: friends@ westminstercathedral.org.uk
July – August 2019
FIFTY AND ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO
In retrospect: from the Cathedral Chronicle All that glisters is not the best mosaic. People stand agape at the gold and glory of the mosaics in the Lady Chapel; there is indeed much there to admire and decipher – how many eyes are sharp enough to pick out the slug, the stagbeetle or the dragonfly? This vault is an encyclopaedia of Marian symbols and stories, it is decorative and colourful but it is not much more than illustration. It falls far short of the magic of the mosaics of the Kariye Camii in Constantinople, the ‘terrible’ beauty of the Christ of Cephalu, the dusty-tapestry quality of the vast mosaics of Monreale and the bright directness of the five great cycles of Ravenna. Yet there are, in the Cathedral, mosaics that comes close to being in the great tradition – those by Boris Anrep, who died on 7 June aged 85. Mr Anrep began his first mosaic as long ago as 1914. It was to have covered the whole of the cross-vaulting in the Inner Crypt [i.e., below the high altar]. All that was completed before he was called to his regiment at the outbreak of the Great War was the archivolt above the tomb of Cardinal Manning portraying two angels and a book. After the war the work was not resumed and finally the design was lost …
The evangelisation of the country districts in the archdiocese of Westminster has been the special care of His Eminence our present Archbishop. It has been perhaps natural that London, with its teeming millions should absorb all the missionary zeal of the clergy. But it cannot be denied that the rural populations have, until lately, been left without the means of knowing the truth of the Catholic religion. The tendency of London workers is to live on the outskirts of the metropolis, and thus London’s dormitories tend to be situated further and further from the city. It is, therefore, of the utmost importance that priests and churches should be provided to minister to the needs not only of the rural populations, but also of Catholics who wish to make their homes in country districts. And among the places chosen in which to plant a new parish it is not surprising that Royston should be selected. A market town, it is a centre for a large district, and being situated on the main line from King’s Cross to Cambridge its train service renders it a favourite place of residence for city men.
Who will ever forget Mr Anrep’s work-table which was ‘as big as a dance floor’ and the partition screen that had to go ever higher to conceal from pious eyes the neverending curl of Gauloise cigarette smoke without which the master could not concentrate? ... One remembers the shy request that perhaps the mouth of Christ in the Miracle of Cana might be allowed to seem to smile as the water is changed into wine. He was over 75 and was pouring a lifetime of care and knowledge into this work.
In the summer of 1911 a preliminary effort was made by Dr Vaughan and the Fathers of the Catholic Missionary Society, who visited the town with their Motor Chapel and held a series of well-attended meetings in the Town Hall. In the autumn of the same year the present parish priest was sent by the Archbishop to try and start a Mission. The prospects, indeed, did not seem hopeful, the number of known Catholics was negligible, and there was neither church nor house for the priest. A small house was taken and Mass said for the faithful few in the passage. The priest could only say Mass on Sundays as he had to get a friend from London to come for the weekend to answer Mass, there being no one in the town capable of performing that office. By this time it became evident that unless a building could be procured for use as a temporary church in which people could be gathered to hear sermons, no missionary progress could be made. With this end in view, a stable was rented and converted into a chapel, the first Mass being said there on the Feast of St Thomas the Apostle 1911, the sermon in the evening being preached by the late Mgr R H Benson to a crowded congregation.
from A Tribute to Boris Anrep by F B in the July 1969 Westminster Cathedral News Sheet
from Catholic Hertfordshire: Royston in the July 1919 Westminster Cathedral Chronicle
In 1954 his name was put forward in connection with a scheme proposed by Sir John Rothenstein to replace the existing mosaic in the Tympanum above the Great Apse. Though this scheme was abandoned, Anrep produced a highly successful and beautiful coloured model avoiding the architectural faults of the existing composition .. Not long after came the proposal that he should be asked to design an iconographic scheme for the decoration of the Blessed Sacrament Chapel …
July – August 2019
ST VINCENT DE PAUL PRIMARY SCHOOL
Saints in Mosaic – St Anthony of Padua Aoife
I started to realise the Cathedral existed when I first joined St Vincent de Paul School when I was four years old. I thought it was a quiet and boring place because I was so young, but now I realise that it is sacred and holy. The Cathedral is not just a place where you go to pray; it is sanctified and made holy by the people who pray there and the presence of God. I always remember the altar in the Cathedral because it reminds me of the Body and Blood of Christ which we receive there. When I come into the Cathedral, it helps me to reflect on my day and helps me pray to be a better person. It brings me closer to Jesus. I think the Cathedral is a beautiful place because of all the mosaics and it makes me feel lucky when I walk in, because some people don’t get the opportunity to be in such a holy place and be so close to Jesus as I am there. The other day I walked into the Cathedral and the first thing I saw was the beautiful statue of St Anthony of Padua and his mosaic. There were flowers and candles all around and I felt very blessed. On the mosaic, there are all brightly coloured fish around the head of the saint, because of the famous story from the life of St Anthony, ‘The Sermon and the Fishes’. In his hands in the mosaic, St Anthony is holding a Book of the Gospels to show that he proclaimed the message of Jesus to everyone, and even to the fishes, when nobody would listen to what he had to say! Actually, his tongue is the main relic of his body today, because it didn’t rot away since he used it to tell the people the Good News. St Anthony of Padua is the patron saint of lost property. He was born on 15 August 1195 in Lisbon, which is in Portugal. He has Padua after his name, because he died in Padua in Italy on 13 June 1231. He became a saint because of his powerful preaching and his undying love for the poor and sick. Today, St Anthony is one of the best known and the most popular male saints. The mosaic of St Anthony of Padua was erected in in 2007 and it is one of the most modern mosaics in Westminster Cathedral. Leonard McComb designed it. It is great to see the work of modern artists and designers in the Cathedral. I like it very much because it is beautiful and very different from the other mosaics there. It also matches the mosaic of St Francis of Assisi, which is full of colourful birds, too! 30
July – August 2019
A ROSARY GARDEN
Horticulture at Haverstock Hill Joanna Bogle
London now has a new and unique Rosary Garden. The Dominican church at Haverstock Hill – formally declared the diocesan Shrine of the Rosary by Cardinal Vincent Nichols in 2016 – has created a special garden dedicated to the Luminous Mysteries. It was blessed on St Dominic’s feast (May 24th) by Dom David Charlesworth of Buckfast Abbey, following a packed Sung Mass in the church.
At Haverstock Hill the Dominican community has come up with a solution to the challenge of adding these Mysteries to the existing shrine provision. A formerly rather bleak and neglected corner of land alongside the church has now been transformed into a Luminous Mysteries Garden. Flowers, shrubs and trees surround a path which maps out the Mysteries: the Baptism in the river Jordan, the Wedding at Cana, the Proclamation of the Gospel, the Transfiguration and the Eucharist. At the centre is a statue of Our Lady of Cana, specially carved for this garden shrine. The garden has been designed and created by Raffaela Morini and Karen Mak. They chose flowers and plants with special connections to Mary – either being of her colours (white and blue) or associated with her name by legend or tradition. The path is itself shaped like a rosary, forming a circular route, and there are benches for rest and contemplation. This development of the shrine looks set to become one of London’s ‘hidden gems’, a quiet place of beauty with its own unique story.
The garden, receiving its blessing
The church, built in the 19th century, has side chapels dedicated to the Joyful, Sorrowful, and Glorious Mysteries. But there was nothing for the Mysteries of Light, as these were not part of the Rosary at that time. St John Paul II established them in 2002, causing headlines around the world as this was a major addition to a well-established devotion. The Luminous Mysteries quickly became popular, recited universally, added to books and prayercards, chanted at Lourdes and Fatima and elsewhere, and generally embedded into Catholic life. July – August 2019
A TRANSATLANTIC WINDOW
From Farm Street to Québec
Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC BY-SA 3.0
In 2013, Lac-Mégantic suffered a devastating rail disaster in which more than 30 of the buildings in the town centre were destroyed, and 42 people were confirmed dead, with more missing presumed dead. The church of St Agnes survived the disaster and is currently being restored. The documentary is about the town and the works in progress, and is to be shown on French Canadian television SRC Radio-Canada on the anniversary of the disaster on 6 July, 2021. The TV crew interviewed Fr Christopher Pedley SJ, Assistant Parish Priest at Farm Street, and Mary Allen, Deputy Archivist, while filming inside the church.
A Canadian TV crew came to Farm Street on at the beginning of June for a documentary about Farm Street church's old east window which was transferred to St Agnes' Church, LacMégantic, Québec in the early 1910s. While the old glass was installed in the small town, in 1912 the window over the high altar at Farm Street Church was reglazed to a new design, which kept the same theme of the Tree of Jesse but was in a different style with a large image of Our Lady in the centre. 32
The main piece of evidence preserved in the archives is a letter written in February 1914 from Fr Choquette, priest at St Agnes', to a Roger Watts, who appears to be responsible for transferring the window from London to Québec. In addition to this, there is a set of photographs showing the installation of the window there. It is likely that Roger Watts was the brother of Philip Watts, a Jesuit and great-grandson of the British architect Augustus Welby Pugin, who designed Farm Street's high altar. The Watts family was also related to the Hardman family, who created the east window that is currently in place. Unfortunately there is no evidence in the archives to suggest how exactly he became involved in transferring the window to Canada. According to the Minister's Log Book for the time, the new window was unveiled at Farm Street on 4 February 1912. There is some confusion as to the history and trajectory of the window that ended up in Québec. According to a Farm Street guide book, the window was installed in 1902 in memory of Lady Georgiana Fullerton by the legacy of her husband, Alexander George Fullerton. However, the window became encrusted with a layer of deposit from candle fumes, leaving the church very dark. Under the impression the glass had perished, Fr Charles Nicholson, who
was then Superior, ordered from Messrs Hardman a new set of lights. When the old window was removed, it was discovered that the glass was intact. The former window was therefore restored and found a home at St Agnes' church. Mary Allen explains that: ‘Fr Nicholson's obituary throws in a red herring; it tells us that the Farm Street window was shipped to Guyana, where it was installed in the cathedral in Georgetown, remaining there until a disastrous fire in 1913. The dates do not quite add up, so I suspect that the author has got this window confused with another, but it would be interesting to know where the information came from. However, another thought is that Joe Dooley's piece says it was also reglazed in 1902, perhaps it was the window removed in 1902 which went to Georgetown. Unfortunately, the little information we have about the window is contradictory in various places and it may be that we never know the full story’.
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July – August 2019
The Magazine of Westminster Cathedral