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June 2019 | Edition Number 248 | FREE

Westminster Cathedral Magazine

Numbers of Cardinals have suffered grievously, but St John Fisher is the only Cardinal to have been put to a deliberate death for the Faith


Protesting and Affirming Campaigners from across the UK took part in the March For Life UK on Saturday 11 May. Starting from Church House, in Great Smith Street, the 5,000-strong march finished in Parliament Square for a rally. Participants sang hymns and prayed. The march comes amid calls on Westminster to extend abortion rights in Northern Ireland and to make extreme changes to abortion legislation in England and Wales. A small group of pro-choice campaigners, warning of the dangers of returning to back street abortions, staged noisy protests during the march. Speaking in Parliament Square, Scottish Bishop John Keenan recalled William Wilberforce's role in abolishing slavery and how slaves had been dehumanized as nonpersons. Similarly, abortionists need to dehumanize unborn children so they could kill them in the womb, he said. ‘Let it not be said that I was silent when they needed me. You may choose to look the other way, but you can never say again that you did not know … If you're a leader in civil society as an MP, or in the Church as a priest or a bishop, be brave, be courageous, because this battle will be won not just by the truth, but it will be won by courage, too’. America abortion survivor, Melissa Ohden, said: ‘I am standing here with you today as a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a Master's level social worker, and, yes, as an abortion survivor. You would never tell by looking at me today, but 41 years ago, I survived a "failed" saline infusion abortion. Despite the miracle of my survival, the doctor's prognosis


for my life was initially very poor. My adoptive parents were told that I would suffer from multiple disabilities throughout my life. However, here I am today, perfectly healthy. Whether I had lived with the expected disabilities or not, my life still deserved to be protected and respected, I still was worthy of the love that my family freely offered’. President of Culture of Life Africa, Obianuju Ekeocha, told the crowds: ‘I am here to lament about the human rights issue of our time. Abortion in this country has been legal now for more than 50 years and has taken the lives of more than nine million people. We are all gathered here today in this special venue, because we have come to raise our voices to this Parliament, because this Parliament has it wrong.’

On the March


May 2019


Inside Oremus

Oremus Cathedral Clergy House 42 Francis Street London SW1P 1QW T 020 7798 9055 E W

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 one of the editorial team.


Cathedral Life: Past & Present Baptism, Confirmation, Reception – Easter Tales 8&9 Disputed Decoration, Part II by Peter Howell

10 & 11 11

St Louis on Maundy Thursday

Cathedral History: The Great Rood by Patrick Rogers 16 & 17

Patron The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster

Cardinal Hume: Remembered and Quoted

Chairman Canon Christopher Tuckwell Editor Fr John Scott

20 & 21

Cathedral History in Pictures: The Funeral Mass of Cardinal Hume by Paul Tobin

Oremus Team Tony Banks – Distribution Zoe Goodway – Marketing Manel Silva – Subscriptions Berenice Roetheli – Proofreading Eucharia Sule – Office Assistant



Features 2

The March for Life

Design and Art Direction Julian Game

Jean Vanier RIP – Reaction to his Death 4

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.

Roman Exploration by Donato Tallo


Christians Under Threat by Aid to the Church in Need


Pilgrimage Permitted – News from Medjugorje


The English Pope by Dr Michael Straiton KCGS

12 & 13

Restoring the Holy Sepulchre


St John of God at Work in Central London

14 & 15

Book Review: Christopher Somerville’s Ships of Heaven – The Private Life of Britain’s Cathedrals by Fr John Scott 22 Religious Celebrate in York – The Bar Convent by Sr Gemma Simmonds CJ


Back to the Courts – Assisted Suicide Again




Regulars St John Fisher, the only English bishop to have stood up in protest against Henry VIII, has his feast day with that of his fellow martyr, St Thomas More, on 22 June. He is pictured here in a window at St Dunstan’s church in Canterbury, where the head of St Thomas More is buried in the Roper family vault. © Giogo

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June 2019



On behalf of the Chairman Monthly Album

18 & 19

Cathedral Diary and Notices

24 & 25

Crossword and Poem of the Month


Friends of the Cathedral


In Retrospect


St Vincent de Paul Primary School





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The Community of L’Arche announced the death of Jean Vanier, its founder, on Tuesday 7 May in the Maison Médicale Jeanne Garnier in Paris. ‘Jean has left an extraordinary legacy,’ said L’Arche International Leader Stephan Posner. ‘His Community of Trosly, the Communities of L’Arche, Faith and Light, many other movements, and countless thousands of people have cherished his words and benefited from his vision.’ Vanier founded L’Arche in 1964 in response to the treatment that people with learning disabilities faced in institutions. There are now more than 150 L’Arche communities in 38 countries around the world, where more than 10,000 people with and without learning disabilities create places of welcome and celebration, sharing in life together. Twelve of these in the UK. John Sargent, National Leader of L’Arche UK, said: ‘Jean’s death is a great sadness. His vision was one of radical welcome, inclusion and joy, where each person is valued and celebrated. He will be greatly missed by people from all walks of life who have been influenced and changed by the witness of his life and his teachings, which remain as relevant today as ever. We are committed to continue to live out his vision in our L’Arche and Faith & Light communities.’ 4

© Kotukaran

Jean Vanier RIP In recent decades, after he retired from his role at L’Arche, Vanier focused on his work sharing a message of unity, dignity and diversity. Jean entrusted the organisation’s legacy to the people who define what L’Arche is today: its members and Communities. In addition to his work with L’Arche, Vanier co-founded Faith and Light, and inspired the creation of many other organisations. He influenced thousands of people around the world and published some 40 books on how people with learning disabilities make essential contributions to building a more humane society. Cardinal Vincent as president of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales said in a statement: ‘At our Bishops’ gathering in Valladolid, we heard with deep emotion of the death of Jean Vanier. For over half a century he has inspired an entirely new appreciation of the gift of people with learning disabilities and revealed the most profound heart of human community. We pray for him and his beloved L’Arche communities at this moment of loss. May he rest in peace.’ Oremus

June 2019


The Editor writes Canon Christopher asks me to express how overwhelmed he has been by the response of so very many to his stay in hospital and present time of convalescence. The assurance of prayers, the Mass intentions offered and the sheer multitude of cards have been testimony to the best sort of Christian concern and charity, for which he is profoundly grateful. Please do continue to keep him in your prayers as he continues in the period of recuperation and rest which his doctors have now prescribed for him. It is likely that you may see him in the vicinity of the Cathedral as he takes exercise over the next couple of months or so. This edition of Oremus reflects on the theme of life from a number of angles. The recent March For Life to Parliament Square highlighted a need for courage on our part in proclaiming that all life is sacred, so sacred indeed that God himself comes to share it fully, incarnate as a child. One who widened our understanding of that sacrality was Jean Vanier, whose recent death is recorded in these pages. He saw that equal value resides in each person and that each has something to offer to others; his vision might be called a shortcut to joy. Here in Victoria we do not have to stray very far from the piazza in front of the Cathedral to find people whose lives have, in a variety of ways, taken wrong turns or who have been victims of misfortune. The Brothers of St John of God have an active ministry in Central London assisting those who find themselves destitute and adrift and we can be proud that our Religious Brothers and Sisters here are responding to Pope Francis’ exhortation to seek out and serve those on the margins of society.

Westminster Cathedral Cathedral Clergy House 42 Francis Street London SW1P 1QW Telephone 020 7798 9055 Service times 020 7798 9097 Email 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

Two contrasting pieces from those received and confirmed at the Easter Vigil offer testimony to the power of the Faith in offering new life and hope, and we congratulate all those who became full members of the Church at Easter. Finally, Oremus reports on yet another attempt to legalise Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia. Hitherto the Courts have judged that change in the law is a matter for Parliament, so it is important that we remind our politicians of our distinctive Catholic and Christian understanding of life as nothing less than God’s own precious gift, and not only a personal possession.

June 2019




Eye-Opening at the FCO Aid to the Church in Need The Anglican Bishop leading an independent review into Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) support for persecuted Christians has described being shocked by the scale of problem being unearthed by the report. Bishop Philip Mounstephen of Truro, who was asked by Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt to lead the review, said: ‘Through my previous experience of the global church in Asia and Africa I was aware of the terrible reality of persecution, but to be honest in preparing this report I’ve been truly shocked by the severity, scale and scope of the problem’. According to the interim report published on Friday 3 May, one third of the world’s population suffers from religious persecution in some form, with Christians being the most persecuted group. The Bishop said: ‘It forces us in the West to ask ourselves some hard questions, not the least of which is this – why have we been so blind to this situation for so long? The oft-cited Western mantra that we attend to “need not creed” disguises this fundamental fact. Put simply, your creed might put you in much greater need – and we cannot be blind to that’.

The Interior of the Basilica

San Lorenzo Fuori Le Mura Donato Tallo

Among the key research findings drawn together by the review are:

· The Pew Research Centre concluded

· NGO Open Doors revealed in

The Basilica of Saint Lawrence outside the Walls is located east of the centre of Rome, only a short distance from Termini, the main station. In many respects the basilica, with an interesting interior and a rich history of restoration over the centuries, is an architectural marvel, despite not being in one of the most aesthetically pleasing neighbourhoods of the city. It is also one of the Seven Pilgrim Churches.

The full report is due to be presented to Mr Hunt by the end of June and will assess the quality of the response of the FCO to situations of Christian persecution, and make recommendations for changes in both policy and practice. The interim report was intended to map the nature and extent of the problem.

As well as being the burial place of the martyr St Lawrence, the basilica, whose portico dates to the early 1200s, is also home to the mortal remains of the martyrs St Justin and St Stephen. There are many beautiful statues and frescoes inside the church, which is currently served by a community of Capuchin Friars Minor of the Roman Province. Located in Piazzale del Verano, it is also the burial place of Blessed Pope Pius IX and a very active and busy parish church

that in 2016 Christians were targeted in 144 countries, a rise from 125 in 2015.

· Aid to the Church in Need has

highlighted the increasing threat from ‘ultra-nationalism’ in countries such as China and India – growing world powers – as well as from Islamist militia groups. its World Watch List Report on anti-Christian oppression that ‘approximately 245 million Christians living in the top 50 countries suffer high levels of persecution or worse’.


of the diocese. While sadly not one of the most visited churches, its art, beauty, peacefulness and tombs really do make it a destination. Situated just behind the basilica is one of Rome’s largest cemeteries; and inside the basilica itself a very peaceful and reverent prayerful atmosphere is constantly maintained. While many pilgrims to the eternal city will have no doubt been to St Peter’s and some of the other papal basilicas, it is certainly worth exploring St Lawrence and the other pilgrim churches on a future visit. The Seven Pilgrim Churches of Rome are: - Basilica of St Peter - Basilica of St Paul Outside the Walls - Basilica of St John Lateran - Basilica of St Mary Major - Basilica of St Lawrence - Basilica of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem - Sanctuary of Our Lady of Divine Love Oremus

June 2019


A Pilgrimage Authorised Vatican Media

Pope Francis has decided to authorise pilgrimages to Medjugorje, which can now be officially organised by dioceses and parishes, and will no longer take place only in a private capacity, as has so far been the case. But the Vatican has stressed that this does not mean that the apparitions of the six visionaries there have been officially recognised. The announcement was made today during Mass at the parish shrine, which has become a destination for millions of pilgrims, by the Apostolic Nuncio in BosniaHerzegovina, Luigi Pezzuto, and Archbishop Henryk Hoser, the Holy See's Special Apostolic Visitator. The ad interim director of the Holy See Press Office, Alessandro Gisotti, responding to journalists' questions about the announcement, specified that the papal authorisation must be accompanied by ‘care to prevent these pilgrimages from being interpreted as an authentication of known events, which still require examination by the Church. Therefore, care must be taken to avoid creating confusion or ambiguity from the doctrinal point of view regarding such pilgrimages. This also concerns pastors of every order and level who intend to go to Medjugorje’. He said: ‘Considering the considerable flow of people who go to Medjugorje and the abundant fruits of grace that have sprung from it, this authorisation is part of the particular pastoral attention that the Holy Father intended to give to that reality, aimed at encouraging and promoting the fruits of good. The Apostolic Visitator will have, in this way, greater ease in establishing relations with the priests in charge of organising pilgrimages, as well as with wellprepared persons, offering them information and indications to be able to fruitfully conduct such pilgrimages, in agreement with the ordinary people of the place’. The Pope's decision comes a year after the appointment of Hoser, Archbishop Emeritus of Warszawa-Prague in Poland, as Apostolic Visitator for the parish of Medjugorje on 31 May 2018. Both that nomination and today's announcement do not, therefore, enter into doctrinal questions relating to the authenticity of the account of the six visionaries of what has happened in Medjugorje since June 1981, a phenomenon that has not yet been concluded. June 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 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

New in Cathedral Gift Shop We are pleased to announce an exquisite addition to the range of gifts available in Westminster Cathedral Gift Shop. Cross pens are renowned worldwide for their design and quality and we now have for sale a luxury ball-point pen which comes with the Cathedral logo and in its own box. This will make an excellent gift for a loved one on that special occasion. Retail Price: £35.00



Discovering the Church Each year a number of adults join the Cathedral’s RCIA programme in preparation for Baptism, Confirmation, Reception into the Church and First Communion at Easter. Here two of this year’s group tell their own stories. Barton writes:

I grew up in Southern California and was blessed to have Christian grandparents on my mother’s side. My parents divorced when I was five and I split weekends between them. At some point, without my father’s knowledge or consent, my grandparents and mother decided to have me baptised. This profoundly upset my father when he found out, but I’m grateful to my mother and grandparents for their act of faith. I dropped out of high school in my teen years and got involved in farleft politics and punk rock. The youth subculture to which I belonged abided by a mantra of no gods, no masters. Something felt wrong with the world, and I wanted to overthrow all the oppressing forces that created poverty, racism, war, inequality, and suffering. Christianity, especially Catholicism, with its hierarchy and scandals, was part of the problem. Yet however much I shook my fist at the Christian faith, I always felt a tug towards it. I found myself constantly drawn towards beautiful Catholic churches and even cycled up the hill from my house, to a chapel at a Catholic university a couple of times. I sat through the Mass wishing I belonged, but felt that I didn’t; and not much immediately came from it. Notwithstanding these christian urges, at 22, when I went to university, I started shopping around California’s spirituality marketplace. Things got slightly weird. In addition to fairly tame meanderings, such as yoga classes and meditation groups, I was also involved in more ‘out there’ offerings, such as 8

crystal healing and experiencing love and fulfilment through attunement to something called ‘the Mother Wave’. It’s laughable now, but at the time, I put a lot of trust into people who simply wanted my money. The turning point for me came when I was 25, on a Maundy Thursday, at the Anglican Grace Cathedral, in San Francisco. I sat alone on a pew, in a sparsely attended evening service with the choir chanting Psalm 22. My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me. I was caught up in the mournful beauty of these words of suffering and redemption as tears streamed down my cheek. Here was a religion that brought hope and yet profoundly understood suffering. I was on a trajectory now into the arms of Jesus but still resistant to personal commitment, so I decided to study it academically. I did a postgraduate degree in literature and theology at Yale Divinity School. After my programme finished, my wife and I bounced between meditation groups and liberal Anglicanism for a year. A friend she’d made from her roller derby

team invited us to an evangelical, nondenominational church. It was a place full of love and deep faith. We had a wonderful couple of years there, but I missed the beauty of liturgy, and the depth of tradition, and often went to sit in Catholic churches on my own. Little did I know that I was now on the home run to Catholicism. When we moved to London for work, my wife and I ended up at an Anglican church, which combined evangelical community with liturgical worship. I started praying the rosary and going to a lunchtime Mass at an Anglo-Catholic church near my work. I was soon left wondering why would anyone ‘do’ everything catholic but not be Catholic? Unsatisfied in belonging to a niche catholic wing of an otherwise Protestant church, I did the unthinkable and emailed the Cathedral RCIA team. Walking down the steps of the sanctuary at the Easter Vigil, having received the Body of Christ for the first time, I looked out at the sea of God’s people and realised: I am a part of all this. I am part of Christ’s body, no longer on the sidelines. I am home.

© Mazur/

Why convert to Catholicism as an adult? The roads to Rome are myriad, but for many, it begins with a call. For some, this calling might have been irresistible, but for 15 years, in every tragic and laughable way possible, I refused to heed God’s beckoning into his one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.

Barton is anointed by Archbishop Adams, the Papal Nuncio Oremus

June 2019

© Mazur/


The RCIA group with Cardinal Vincent and Fr Rajiv after the Vigil

Joanne writes: I’ve struggled with mental illness since I was 14. By the time I was 25, I was empty, completely dried up and desperate. I was suicidal. I was severely underweight. I was feeding the illness with things that were making me sicker. In an attempt to move towards recovery, I left my job and started working at a Catholic school. Having been raised by atheist parents who had had me baptised in a Methodist chapel more for family tradition’s sake than through any semblance of religious fervour, I was agnostic at best. I had attended Sunday School with my grandmother as a child and later spent a year intensely involved in a friend’s Baptist church in my teens, but I had never dived in deep enough to really form a true faith of my own. It was at my new job that I met Anthony. We hit it off right away, became friends, and our conversations soon turned to faith. At first, I mocked his Catholicism, but something had sparked in me. I bought a bible, a book I hadn’t read in earnest since I was 14. I prayed. I watched live streams of Mass on the internet, too scared to go to the church 100 yards from my front door. Eventually, I called Dominic and told him I wanted June 2019


to be received into the Church. His encouraging, joyful voice on the end of the phone helped keep my tiny fire alive. The first time I ventured to Mass I was terrified, fearful of facing the God I had rejected; the God who I thought had abandoned me when I needed him most. In that small church in Hampstead, a hymn I’d loved as a child started playing. Knock and it shall be opened unto you, seek and ye shall find. I was flooded with the power and love of the Holy Spirit. I felt God rejoicing at my being there, where I belonged, in his home. He was welcoming me, personally, and saying: ‘Thank you so much for coming!’ I cried all the way home again, but in the light of love. Once I opened myself up to God, he showed me blessing after blessing. Slowly, as I grew stronger in my faith, my ability to control my impulses improved. As I drew closer to Christ, loving him, speaking with him, adoring him, I saw the stability I had craved forming around me. Through God’s grace, I stopped living in a constant state of deliberate sin; I lived in the purposeful pursuit of God’s healing and repair. Every time I called out in despair, he

loved me, he strengthened me, he showed me how to cope. In preparation for my first Holy Communion, I made my first confession. Praying before the Blessed Sacrament, I heard the Lord call: ‘Come to me’. All the fear I’d held in anticipation of confessing left me - I stood up and I went to confess. After the absolution, an act of true love, mercy and forgiveness, I was fully relieved of my shame and self-loathing. Later, ahead of the Easter Vigil, I was an anxious bride. The Cathedral, clothed in darkness, steadily filled with the light of hundreds of candles. In the sanctuary, before the congregation, I was confirmed and received the Eucharist for the first time. Returning to my kneeler, through my tearful praise, I saw a vision of what heaven might be like. The choir sang choruses of Alleluia!, my heart was full to overflowing and God was so very near to me. I was finally at peace. Looking back now, I see that those times I was close to giving in to my illness, feeling so alone, are the times God was most present, gently holding me together and keeping me alive. The girl I was, sick and dying, started to recover, and truly I began to know life. 9


Disputed Decoration of the Cathedral Part II Peter Howell

On 5 October 1912 Gerald Siordet wrote a long letter to The Tablet, commenting on ‘the cartoon lately set up for inspection and criticism as a design for the first of the projected Stations of the Cross in Westminster Cathedral’. Some of these designs survive in the Cathedral archives. They are by George Daniels, who had produced cartoons for stained glass designed by Bentley, and for the opus sectile and mosaics in the Chapel of Ss Gregory and Augustine, designed by J R Clayton. Siordet argued that it was unwise to fill in these spaces at the present stage of the decoration. Cardinal Bourne, however, wanted the Stations executed. Siordet did not like what he called ‘a singularly unhappy production’, ‘a pretty, pious composition’. He thought that mosaic (now intended rather than opus sectile) was an unsuitable material, and reported that he had advised Bourne that tempera pictures would be better. Rather oddly, he claimed that the ‘experiments’ in opus sectile in the Chapel of Ss Gregory and Augustine ‘disappointed [Bentley’s] hopes, and led him to abandon the idea of opus sectile for the Stations of the Cross’. No evidence for this is known, and opus sectile was used in the Chapel of the Holy Souls, which, although executed after his death, gives the best idea of his intentions for decoration. The problem of the Stations was solved in a manner described by Eric Gill in his Autobiography (1940), recording his discussion with John Marshall, the Cathedral architect, ‘to whom I had been introduced by a young man, Gerald Siordet (RIP), whom I had not previously met, but who, having the wit to see that I could do the work, had also the energy and the forcefulness to arrange an introduction’. Although Gill claimed to be ‘the only possible person for the job’, he only got it because he would do it for a lower price than any ‘really “posh” painter or sculptor’ would demand. Siordet was not one to give up. In June 1914 he told the Duke of Norfolk that he had been to see More Adey, editor of the Burlington Magazine, who said he would try to get articles in The Times, The Burlington Magazine, and the Revue de l’Art Chrétien, while he would ask Everard Meynell to get one in The Illustrated London News. No article appeared in the Burlington. He repeated his conviction that a mosaic committee was necessary. More Adey suggested that ‘an exhibition of designs for ecclesiastical decoration’ should be held under the patronage of the Cardinal and the Duke. Siordet thought that ‘in the meantime Marshall ought to stay his hand’. Later the same month he told the Duke that an architect was writing about the Cathedral: it is not known who this was. He hoped to persuade W R Lethaby, the distinguished 10

Design by George Daniels for the 8th Station of the Cross

architect and teacher who had published a warm eulogy of the Cathedral in The Architectural Review (1901), to write. Bentley’s old friend Charles Hadfield also urged Lethaby to intervene, but he replied on 5 October: ‘I cannot join in the mob of voices – it is a terrible business all this anarchy of opinion. About a year ago I was asked to say something on the other side! They won’t be content till they have destroyed it someway or another – wisdom would have left it where Bentley did or have been guided wholly by his successor. Then again, the war does not leave me any margin of energy or care for things.’ In October 1915 controversy again erupted. A long article appeared in The Observer, written by Paul George Konody, the paper’s art critic. He referred to criticism in The Universe of Gill’s Stations, and added his own condemnation of their ‘child-like naiveté, a disguise of archaistic affectation’, unworthy of ‘the most lofty and inspiring architectural conception of our age’. The only decorative work he could approve was that by W C Symons in the Chapel of the Holy Souls. An even longer reply was published in the same paper, signed ‘Catholicus, British Expeditionary Force, France’ – obviously Siordet. He defended Gill’s Stations, but launched an attack on ‘the silly vulgarity’ of Joan of Arc, ‘the insipid gentility’ of Robert Anning Bell’s mosaic of Our Lady in the Lady Chapel, ‘the crass vulgarity’ of the Chapel of the Sacred Heart, and the ‘tasteful and refined ... trail of shamrocks’ in St Patrick’s Chapel. He refused even to praise Bentley’s decoration, calling it ‘poor, tawdry, and mortiferously derivative’. He cited his St Bede’s Chapel at Ushaw, and claimed that Bentley was dissatisfied with the Chapel of the Holy Souls. Efforts to get a committee of artists appointed had been ‘summarily crushed’. Oremus

June 2019

PREPARING THE TRIDUUM gave up the idea of using opus sectile on ‘the pilasters’ (i.e. the nave piers) after he saw the ‘deplorable effects’ of its use in the Chapel of Ss Gregory and Augustine could not be correct, as that decoration was begun after his death.

Gill answered the criticisms by arguing that opus sectile was ‘a very bad method’, and that low relief carving was the only kind ever used in a Byzantine building. He insisted that he was not working in any archaic style, ‘for I can only work in one style, and that is my own’. The Observer next published a letter from ‘2nd Lieut. Osmund Bentley’, the architect’s son (then at Aldershot). Perhaps surprisingly, he said he was ‘in entire agreement’ with Konody, but insisted that ‘Catholicus’ was seriously misinformed, especially about his father’s attitude towards opus sectile, and particularly about his supposed dissatisfaction with the Chapel of the Holy Souls. Osmund Bentley’s letter elicited an indignant response from ‘Catholicus’, who claimed most surprisingly - that his source of information was John Marshall. Further refutation came in a letter from ‘Veritas’ (Marshall?), who pointed out that the claim that Bentley

Lieutenant Siordet sent back from the trenches a learned article defending Gill’s ‘archaistic technique’, as well as some much admired poems. However, after winning the Military Cross at the Somme, he was killed at Kut-al-Amara in Mesopotamia in February 1917. His Requiem at the Cathedral was attended by many friends, who (according to The Sketch) ‘queered their breakfasts in order to be present’. Peter Howell is a Cathedral parishioner, a member of the Art and Architecture Committee and also a Committee member of the Victorian Society.

The French Connection Richard Hawker, Head Sacristan ‘What vestment shall we lay out for the Cardinal at the Mass of the Last Supper?’ This was the question the Cathedral MC and I asked, as we went through the drawers of ‘best white’ vestments, on Spy Wednesday, the day before Maundy Thursday. Something decent, something that perhaps had not seen the light of day in a while, and something not too heavy. That final proviso limited our search somewhat. We worked our way through the drawers: ‘Too heavy… not white enough… too far gone… too heavy again… oh! What about this one?’ Bright white satin, embroidered, with, unusually, dolphins. French cut; narrower than our full-cut Roman chasubles, and with a cross on the back. Its crowning glory is a roundel of St Louis, King of France, holding the relic of the Crown of Thorns, and wearing his mantle. Both of these items had been rescued from the cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris barely 48 hours previously. This, we felt, was the hand of providence and this is what the Cardinal wore, in solidarity with the great cathedral of Paris.

© Mazur/

The chalice used for the procession of the Blessed Sacrament to the Altar of repose, and our tabernacle, or Urn, was made to fit it. The chalice was made in the reign of Henry VIII. It is a little thing, and very unassuming, but with an awful lot of Catholic history behind it. As to the chasuble, we do not know how it came to be here. Clearly French, embroidered with silk shading, around the edge, in reds and blues, and an embroidered cross on the back, made up of dolphins (or Dauphins), and the roundel of St Louis.

The Cardinal, vested for the Mass of the Last Supper June 2019


It is difficult to age this sort of thing. But, given the condition of the silk, which is beginning to perish (white always perishes more quickly than other colours, as it was historically dyed using bleach), I would say that it was late 19th, early 20th century – a very beautiful set of vestments, made suddenly significant as a part of our collection by virtue of current affairs!


La bibliothèque de Reims


Pope Adrian IV, depicted unmitred.

The only English Pope Dr Michael Straiton KCSG

There have been few non-Italian popes in history but an Englishman, Nicholas Breakspear - Pope Adrian IV, the only English pope, elected in 1154 - was one of the greatest. At that time the papacy was in peril from enemies on all sides, but Adrian challenged them resolutely and courageously. Bedmont in Abbot’s Langley Nicholas was born around 1100 of humble stock at Bedmont in Abbot’s Langley, Hertfordshire. The farmhouse at Abbot’s Langley was long regarded as the site of the Breakspear family, (pictured in the 19th century above). It was recently demolished and replaced by a small row of houses, but there is a plaque on the road-side. His father, Robert, had taken minor orders at the nearby monastery of St Albans. Nicholas was admitted to the monastery as a pupil, but fell from grace due to laziness and was expelled. He quit his native land, went to Paris and gained admission at the University. In 1125 young Nicholas went south to enter the novitiate at 12

the house of the Canons Regular of St Rufus at Avignon where he was professed, ordained a priest, and later became prior. In 1137 he succeeded to the abbacy, but the Canons found his rule too strict and appealed to Pope Eugenius III, who reconciled them and sent them home. The complaints were repeated in 1146 and again a deputation appealed to Pope Eugenius, but this time he bid the Canons find another abbot, retaining Breakspear for his own service and appointing him as Cardinal-Bishop of Albano. In 1152 Cardinal Breakspear received instructions to go to Norway and Sweden as Papal Legate. He settled the differences between the Scandinavian monarchs and achieved

a lasting peace. He then created an archbishopric for the kingdom of Norway at Nidaros, (now Trondheim), in honour of St Olaf (d. 1030). Investing John Birgerson bishop of Stavanger with the pallium there, he subjected the sees of Apsloe, Bergen and Stavanger, the small Norwegian colonies of the Orcades, Hebrides, the Faroe Islands and Gaard in Greenland, as well as the Shetlands and Western Isles of Scotland and the Isle of Man, to his jurisdiction. The legate’s success in Sweden was limited and he returned to Rome. On his arrival he was acclaimed as ‘the Apostle of the North’ and, as the reigning pope had just died, Nicholas was elected his successor and took the name Adrian IV. He was crowned with the tiara on 4 December 1154. Oremus

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Adrian’s most formidable opponent was Frederick Barbarossa, the mightiest German sovereign that Europe had seen since Charlemagne. He had succeeded to the throne in 1153 and was crowned at Aachen, but he had to be crowned by the pope as Holy Roman Emperor. He therefore embarked on a campaign of conquest in Italy and advanced on Rome. Not knowing Frederick’s intentions, Pope Adrian rode out, stopping on the first night at Nepi. On the morrow, the intrepid pontiff moved to take part in one of the most dramatic scenes in history. It was customary in the Middle Ages for the pope, whenever he paid another sovereign the compliment of a personal visit, to ride to the meeting-place on a white palfrey. The sovereign, whom he was thus honouring, was expected to assist him in dismounting by holding his stirrup as an act of respect to him as the successor of the Blessed Apostle Peter. When Adrian arrived at the Royal Pavilion outside Sutri, Frederick strode forward but did not fulfil protocol. Hearing angry murmuring from the German troops, the pope’s retinue, with the cardinals, took fright and fled, leaving Adrian alone. The pope quietly dismounted and Frederick stepped eagerly forward but Adrian June 2019


refused to give him the customary kiss of peace and rode back to Sutri. The next day the two met again but this time Frederick saw sense and assisted the pope off his horse and the kiss of peace was exchanged. On 18 June 1155 Frederick was anointed and crowned by Pope Adrian in St Peter’s Basilica. The Roman republicans then revolted against both pope and empire. Battle ensued and the Emperor’s forces won the day, but feeling that he could no longer defend the city, Frederick, with Adrian, departed. He saw the pope safely ensconced at Tivoli, then fought his way back to Germany. Meanwhile, the Norman freebooter King William of Sicily was quietly occupying papal territories in the south. The pope himself led the forces against William, recovering Brindisi and other maritime towns, but William advanced and defeated the papal army, taking Adrian prisoner. A summit meeting was held at Beneventum, where a settlement was agreed, leaving Adrian free to return to Rome in November 1156. However, the pope was faced with anarchic confusion in Ireland. The land had been at the mercy of the Vikings, who had looted and destroyed churches and monasteries. Church lands had been appropriated by laymen and there was chronic internal strife with corruption everywhere. In 1155 Henry II of England requested papal sanction to invade Ireland. Adrian’s response obliged Henry to rule Ireland as a papal fief and to do homage to the pope, which he refused. Twelve years after Adrian’s death, Henry did eventually invade Ireland. A papal bull justifying his action and attributed to Adrian, called Laudabiliter (Praiseworthily), was produced but has long been considered a forgery. Pope Adrian died suddenly in 1159 and was buried in St Peter’s, where his sarcophagus in the crypt bears the simple inscription Hadrianus Papa IIII. He had done his part in securing a firm foundation for the great revival of the papacy in the Middle Ages. This article is reproduced from the newsletter of the Friends of the Holy Father with kind permission.

Restoring the Holy Sepulchre

© Gray Bembridge

Almost at once the new pope found himself in trouble. Within the Roman Senate there was a powerful faction, led by Arnold of Brescia, a Roman tribune and fierce heretic who wanted to sweep away papal authority and return to the days of the ancient Roman republic. Turmoil in Rome made the pope’s position there untenable, and he retired within the Vatican fortifications. Besieged by the hostile republicans, Adrian took the unprecedented step of imposing an Interdict on the people of Rome. All churches were closed and no religious services, including Mass, could be held. It was Lent, with Holy Week fast approaching, so many pilgrims were pouring into the city. Faced with spiritual and financial disaster, the people lost their nerve, Arnold of Brescia was banished and the Senate acknowledged the temporal sovereignty of the Holy See. Adrian lifted the Interdict and celebrated Mass in the Lateran Basilica.

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre

King Abdullah of Jordan has paid for the costs of restoration of the Basilica of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. This week the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, All Palestine and Jordan, Theophilos III, thanked the King on behalf of the entire Christian community of the Holy Land. The gift came from the Templeton Prize, which he received last November. At the presentation ceremony King Abdullah said that a portion of the £1.1 million prize would be used for restoration work in Jerusalem, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The King is renowned for his tireless work to promote peace and mutual respect both within Islam and between Islam and other religions. In his acceptance speech he said he was receiving the prize on behalf of all Jordanians, and reaffirmed the commitment to fight extremism, saying Islam is not about ‘cherry picking verses from the Koran to justify a political agenda’. Patriarch Theophilos said that the donation reflects the King's personal commitment to the security and future of Jerusalem as guardian of Islamic and Christian holy places in the country. 13


Freeing the Trafficked and Enslaved The March edition of Oremus featured on its front cover a carving of St John of God. Here the Community which bears his name reports on its current work in central London.

The Brothers of St John of God

‘For the love of God help your brother and sister who need your help.’ These were the words of St John of God, who, in the 1500s, sought alms on the streets of Granada, Spain, for the poor and the sick that he helped in his 'House of Hospitality.' Five hundred years later, the Services of St John of God / Brothers of St John of God are following in his footsteps in central London, running a hostel named after their Cuban Brother, Bl Olallo Valdes.

The House, situated just off a main London thoroughfare, is a refuge of compassion and hospitality, where no one is turned away, even if they have ‘no recourse to public funds’. Victims of slavery or trafficking often come straight from police stations where they have been taken after being rescued in police raids. The House is driven by a philosophy summed up as ‘Hospitality in the manner of St John of God’. One recent resident wrote: ‘I was exploited for nine years. The “agents” who brought me to the UK said that I had to repay the debt. I was doing car washing and decorating jobs. I was taken around the country, living in seven different towns. I was never paid, as the money went to pay the fee that I owed. They took my passport and I was trapped. Since getting to Olallo House I have received the support that meets my needs. I feel that I am treated with dignity, like a human being.’ The hostel offers 29 single and four double / couple rooms, with all meals included, besides a 24-hours residents' kitchen. It also offers its residents a common room and computers where people are given support to write CVs and prepare for job hunting. Br Malachy, who has been involved in the project since the early days, said: ‘We offer intensive support to get back victims' identity and make them visible; securing them a National Insurance number, relevant certificates, for example in Health and Safety in the ISeeALL

In partnership with the Poor Servants of the Mother of God who donated the building, Olallo House was opened in 2008. Since 2012, St John of God Hospitaller Services manages the ministry. Olallo House is a safe house for victims of modern day slavery and trafficking, rough sleepers

Orders help to fund several beds. Having recently marked the first decade running the hostel, the Brothers are now making an urgent appeal for funds to improve what they can offer the most destitute, who are trying to rebuild their lives after what are sometimes years of being exploited by traffickers or of being on the margins of society.

Slavery (1965), a marble by Valentin Galochkin

with no recourse to public funds (NRPFs), individuals on tuberculosis treatment, individuals discharged from hospitals without a ‘home’ and some of the most hard to reach individuals such as Roma, alcoholics and drug addicts. Generous donations both from individuals and Religious 14


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OUTREACH TO THE NEEDY construction sector, in order to improve their employability, so that they can save money, find private accommodation and move on with their lives. We measure our success in people walking out the door with a job and a roof over their head and not coming back!’ Olallo House now boasts an 82% success rate; yet the team is sadly conscious of others who do not manage this, often through mental health problems, alcohol addiction or immigration restrictions. Miguel Neves, who is Hospitaller Services' national lead for homelessness and modern slavery adds: ‘We aim to take the “victim” out of the person and to create a fully rounded personhood despite the trauma. It's about their identity and seeing them as citizens and not just “labour”. It's also about creating a humanity and uniqueness for the individual after what they've suffered, having been treated so badly by those who trafficked them’. The House started as a street outreach project, with Brothers walking the streets of the capital to find the most vulnerable, such as homeless migrants from Europe living in derelict properties and building sites. But there had to be more than just outreach and to fulfil the mission there had to be a roof offered to those on the street. The Brothers soon understood that what these individuals needed was a safe place to restart. A second nearby property has now opened which just accommodates victims of trafficking and a third safe house is about to open in north-east England. Another key aspect of the place is in its offer of a convalescent space for homeless people recently discharged from London hospitals. The Pathway charity started working with Olallo House so that the many homeless individuals in hospital and fit for discharge would have a place to finish their treatment without being discharged to the streets with a big bag of medication. Also welcomed from hospital are people receiving tuberculosis treatment once they are no longer infectious. Due to the severity and strength of the medication, there are undesirable side effects that the House takes into consideration. In order to mitigate these, a separate sitting room / quiet space and a kitchen is made available for those in treatment: ‘Our uniqueness is to work with those on the streets that no-one else wants’, said Br Malachy.

not only in the UK, but also abroad. ‘Traffickers are manipulative: they coerce the victim and often threaten the victim's family, even vulnerable elderly relatives, to keep the victim in subjugation’, said Miguel. People often arrive at Olallo House with just a plastic bag and virtually nothing in it. Providing clothing is thus an essential first step. But where to shop? Olallo Services are adamant to avoid high street chains that do not have a clear ethical policy on where cheap garments come from and how workers who produced the clothes are treated: ‘How can you morally justify spending a pound on a tee-shirt and not question whose fingers were exploited to make it in another part of the world?’ asks Miguel. Recent research by the Arise Foundation revealed the scale of anti-trafficking work being done by Religious Congregations, often under the radar. St John of God Hospitaller Services hopes that by sharing details of its work for the most destitute, other congregations will lend their support - offering skills or services, financial support or the use of properties. One Sister currently goes in at weekends to cook for residents; Olallo Services would welcome other Religious who have language skills, experience of teaching English, or healthcare experience, to come and help them treat the poorest of the poor with dignity, respect, compassion and justice in a Hospitaller manner. Further information is at the website:

For two years, the House has been part of the National Referral Mechanism (NRM), which is a framework for identifying and referring potential victims of modern slavery and ensuring that they receive the appropriate support. It offers victims access to specialist tailored support for a period of at least 45 days while their case is considered. Br Malachy added as an example a Vietnamese man they are currently supporting. He was severely traumatised and on anti-depressants, but in recent weeks has improved greatly and a smile has returned to his face. But he and Miguel also reflect ruefully on one of the first Vietnamese they helped, who fled back to the traffickers after staying just one night, fearful of the threats that had been made to his family back home. They later learned that he was subsequently rescued from a cannabis farm in another part of the country. They also recall another UK victim of modern slavery, who came to them after 18 years of servitude with one family. The victim had been exploited June 2019




The Great Rood Patrick Rogers

Cardinal Vaughan, founder of the Cathedral, was directly involved with the rood, writing in 1902 to William Christian Symons, who was to paint it, that the representation must be of the living Christ – there must be no pierced side. In this he seems to have been thinking of of crucifixes made from the sixth to the 13th centuries, which portray a living, triumphant Christ. Vaughan’s views also appeared in the last issue of the Westminster Cathedral Record, published as a supplement to The Tablet in June 1902. This confirms the height (30ft) of the rood and its position (to hang between the sanctuary and nave), and refers to the paintings of the four evangelists in the end panels and of Our Lady of Sorrows (Mater Dolorosa) on the reverse side.

Drawing A8 shows the rood with the proposed hanging lamps

Passers-by on Victoria Street see the Cathedral and often wonder what it is and what it looks like inside. Many of them come in to find out. The first thing they see is likely to be the body of a man on a great red and gold cross, and at once they know they are in a Christian church. The crucifix or Great Rood (from the Old English word rod, meaning ‘cross’) was designed by architect John Francis Bentley soon after starting work on the Cathedral in 1895. A drawing signed by him (A8) and dated 1896 shows it hanging in its present position. The scale below the drawing shows the rood dimensions (30ft by 23ft) to be the same as they are today, while the figure of Christ also seems identical. Differences now are the absence of the five great hanging lamps and in the end panel paintings. In the drawing these show the dove of the Holy Spirit (above), the Lamb of God (below) and our Lady and St John to left and right. Today they show the symbols of the four evangelists who described the crucifixion – Matthew (a winged man), Mark (a lion), Luke (an ox) and John (an eagle). 16

By this time the rood was being carved in Bruges from Bentley’s designs. Canvas was then stretched over the teak and deal frame and Symons painted it in the Cathedral in 1903, from sketches seen by Bentley before his death in March 1902. In portraying the dead Christ, Symons remained faithful to Bentley’s design, but the evangelists and Our Lady of Sorrows were portrayed as the Cardinal wished. Vaughan also chose the quotations from the Stabat Mater for the end panels around Our Lady. These are taken from a late 13th century Latin hymn by a Franciscan, Jacopone di Todi. The English version of the hymn starts: ‘At the cross, her station keeping, stood the mournful Mother, weeping’. The words in the panels may be translated as: ‘Stood the sorrowful Mother; O Mother, fount of love; Make my heart to burn in me; Beside the cross to stand with Thee’. Once the painting was complete, the two-ton cross was hauled into position over a period of 18 hours. And there it remained for 30 years while the liturgies and decoration of the Cathedral took place below. But a new Cardinal, Francis Bourne, had succeeded Vaughan and in 1932-33 the arch between the sanctuary and the apse, behind the rood, was decorated with a great blue mosaic of Christ in majesty. Bourne found that the Great Rood obscured this and late in 1933 he had it removed to a position in the north-west corner of the nave, above the bronze plaques listing the names of the Chief Pastors of the Church. High on the wall there you can still see the four steel girders which supported it. In his New Year message to the Cathedral Chronicle of January 1934, Cardinal Bourne explained his decision on the grounds that Bentley had originally planned a much smaller cross to hang over the baldacchino, that the Great Rood was an afterthought, miscalculated in preparation and out of proportion. In this he seems to have been repeating Winifride de l’Hôpital, in Westminster Cathedral and its Oremus

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CATHEDRAL HISTORY Architect (published in 1919; Winifride was Bentley’s daughter), that due to an error in measurement the rood’s proportions were not exactly as Bentley intended. But both Bourne and de l’Hôpital seem to have been mistaken. The 1902 Cathedral Record and Bentley’s drawings A8 and F84 (the rood frame) show the position and dimensions of the rood as they are today. Bentley and Cardinal Vaughan clearly gave it much thought and Bentley was meticulous in his drawings and directions. An article by Bentley in the Cathedral Record of January 1896 shows that he initially planned to hang both a gilt cross and a painted crucifix about 30ft high (the Great Rood). Bentley’s drawings give no sign of plans for a cross to hang over the baldacchino, but three drawings (B24, 26 and 34) show a bronze gilt cross, only 20in high, mounted on top of it. He discussed plans for the baldacchino with Cardinal Vaughan in November 1901 and this cross (which looks like a late addition) may have been added then. The Cathedral Record of June 1902 also refers to the baldacchino ‘surmounted by a cross’. In any event, Bentley’s death, the arrival of broken baldacchino columns and the subsequent death of the Cardinal in June 1903, appear to have disrupted plans. Neither in a drawing of the baldacchino received in 1904 by the marble merchants (Farmer and Brindley), nor on the baldacchino itself, erected by them in 1906, is there any sign of the little bronze cross.

Detail of the frame of the rood, sent to the carvers in Belgium

In Bourne’s 1934 New Year message he explained that the new mosaic of Christ in majesty was intended to recall the dedication of the Cathedral to the Most Precious Blood and was inspired by the church in Rome of which he was the Cardinal Priest, Santa Pudenziana. In that church a graceful 4th century apse mosaic, the oldest in Rome, dominates the nave. Above the central figure of Christ enthroned appears a great jewelled mosaic cross, similar to that in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel here. After this it was clearly galling to Bourne to have his own sanctuary mosaic in the Cathedral obscured by a 30ft high painted rood. In the event, one of the first recommendations of the Cathedral Art and Architecture Committee, set up after Bourne’s death in 1935, was that the Great Rood be restored to its original position. In February 1937 it was.

Drawing B34 shows the proposed cross on top of the baldacchino; note also the altar and marble work behind it June 2019


The Great Rood has now hung undisturbed for 82 years while, once again, the liturgies and decoration of the Cathedral have proceeded below. The Rood is the focal point of the Cathedral and without it there would be a vacuum at the centre. In the last issue of the Cathedral Record in June 1902 (in effect the voice of Cardinal Vaughan), it was forecast that the Great Rood would ‘dominate the whole Cathedral by its majestic presence, and it will be the first object to catch the eye on entering. This is as it should be – Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat (Christ conquers, Christ reigns, Christ commands)’. It does, it is and it should. 17

© James Holliday, Simply Photography


The First Communicants, with their families, the Catechists and Fr Rajiv

The First Communion Mass This Mass is always an occasion of great excitement, with outfits on show, families and friends in attendance and photographs taken for family albums. At its heart, however, is the mystery of the Mass and our prayer for the children is that it will be a constant reality in and foundation for their lives. There will be other important steps for them to take – Confirmation and, later, Marriage or the awareness of another vocation – but First Communion is their first great response to the gift of Christian identity given to them at their Baptism.

70 Not Out A Significant Birthday – we do not mention the number – was recently celebrated by Paul Tobin, who will be familiar to many as a Cathedral MC. Paul goes back a long way in his connections as an ex-chorister, but was joined for the celebration by Fr John Deehan, like Paul an alumnus of Ealing Abbey School. Paul is also, of course, a regular contributor to Oremus, as he sifts his way through the photos in the Cathedral Archives and uses his memory and liturgical knowledge to explain to us all both who was who and what was being done by them.

Paul, left, with Fr John Deehan, right and Tim, centre, a fellow MC

Money Management A coffee morning in Clergy House recently welcomed Agnes Dabrowska, who takes on the role of Cathedral Finance Manager. No one pretends that it is easy to balance the books here, since there are many competing demands within the Cathedral complex, but it is crucial that the best and most efficient use is made of the money that comes in, and not least through the generosity of the faithful. Progress has been made and Agnes will help us to improve further. Left: Agnes is welcomed 18


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2019’s Paschal Candle The Paschal Candle is the Church’s symbol of the Resurrection and this year’s candle is a depiction of Christ in glory. In his left hand he holds a book, open to tell us who he is: EGO SUM LUX MUNDI – I am the Light of the World, whilst his right hand is raised in the characteristic action of blessing. In previous years the Candle has been lit on Sundays and major feasts, with a tea light on top of the candle substituting as the Paschal flame on weekdays, but that has been discontinued in favour of the Candle itself burning on all occasions. For what other purpose does the candle exist, other than to burn itself out and give light?

A Busy Bank Holiday Weekend © JMazur/

Some elements of Cathedral life are pleasingly predictable, one of them being that the church will be full when a Saturday is given over to being A Day with Mary. Mass is celebrated, sermons are preached, 10 confessors are kept busy, the Rosary is recited, the Blessed Sacrament is carried in procession and Adoration fills the afternoon programme. The devotion of the day is a great gift to the Cathedral for which we can be thankful. As it fell on the Saturday of a Bank Holiday weekend, the Monday was busy, too, since it was Our Lady has no lack of friends Westminster’s turn to host the annual Migrants’ Mass. There was a sea of colourful banners, flags and parasols as the international congregation, many in national dress, processed in from Ambrosden Avenue and the Piazza for the Mass of St Joseph the Worker. The Offertory Procession was led by the Caribbean, Ghanaian, Vietnamese, Filipino and Congolese communities, who danced down the central aisle and sang while playing music as they brought everything to the altar. At the end of Mass a Syrian woman came to the ambo with her family to thank the eight parishes that are sponsoring them and helping them to feel at home within the community in the Sutton deanery of Southwark diocese. Below: Groups paraded and posed on the piazza

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An Anniversary Anthology George O’Neill

© National Portrait Gallery

Living in Westminster, he was appalled by the visible rise in homeless young people and families living in poverty, and dedicated his life to helping others. Twenty years later, his legacy remains; his vision of a more caring society lives on today in all our hearts, and especially in the charities that he founded and supported in his lifetime. We remain inspired by his words and wisdom, some of which are printed on these pages together with pictures from the Westminster Cathedral archive.

The Cardinal’s portrait in the National Portrait Gallery

Monday 17 June 2019 will mark the 20th anniversary of the death of Cardinal Basil Hume. The vastly popular Cardinal was known and loved by many, from those in his home town of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and the community around Westminster, to the many who still come to pray and to remember him at his grave in the Cathedral. As the Chief Executive of the Cardinal Hume Centre, I frequently meet people who knew and worked closely with him, and I am inspired by hearing how Basil Hume considered himself as a humble monk first. His humility, compassion and empathy were always evident, and in an extraordinary way it seemed that almost everyone he met thought of him as a personal friend. Without seeking it, ‘Father Basil’ became a spiritual beacon for millions of people in our country and beyond. 20

A special Mass for the repose of the soul of Cardinal Hume will be celebrated by Cardinal Vincent Nichols on Monday 17 June at 5.30pm in the Cathedral. All are welcome.

‘Homelessness is still a pressing social problem. Sadly for many, it seems there is no sense of hope – yet behind each face is a personal story, the circumstances that brought that individual person to this state. These people are precious in the eyes of God and thus must be precious in our eyes.’ ‘In this area of London we are fortunate indeed to have so many people committed to this work. The Cardinal Hume Centre, together with the Passage and the Depaul Trust, all do a marvellous job, in complementary ways, to assist homeless people. The work of the Cardinal Hume Centre is the product of a lot of effort and many acts of generosity by individuals and groups of people.’

‘There is an unbreakable bond between our love of God and love of our neighbour. That’s to say you cannot love God without loving your neighbour. Every individual must be given the opportunity to live a life in which his or her basic needs are provided for and in which, so far as it is reasonably possible, their full potential is realised. Each person matters. No human life is ever redundant.’

Cardinal Hume’s Address at an Open Evening at the Cardinal Hume Centre, 25 March 1994

Cardinal Basil Hume, 1994

Remaking Europe: Gospel in a Divided Continent by Basil Hume, October 1994

‘In our society, we are sometimes encouraged to judge people exclusively by what they achieve, by their jobs, their wealth, their position, even where they live. Therefore, to have no job, to be poor, to be old, to suffer from a chronic illness, or to be without a home: any and all of those can make a person feel useless and rejected, of no value to society, and a burden on others. The book of Genesis teaches that we are each made in the image and likeness of God - therefore, each individual life, at whatever stage, must be accorded complete protection and respect, in which the full potential is realised.’

‘To go in search of God requires effort, and a measure of self-discipline and self-denial. The voice of God does not speak dramatically, as in a hurricane or an earthquake, but calls to us gently in the very depths of our being.’

‘Living and working as a bishop in the centre of London, one cannot but be affected by the sight of the homeless on the streets. They are almost an expected feature of life in a big city, and it is tempting to think there is little or nothing that can, or even should, be done about it. My interest in homelessness stems from the Christian obligation to help those in need. Our Lord says in St Matthew’s Gospel: “Insofar as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me”. So I believe that we Oremus

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CARDINAL HUME REMEMBERED especially in inner cities, who are particularly vulnerable: the mentally ill, alcoholics and drug users, young single homeless.’ Annual General Meeting of Acton Homeless Concern, July 1990

Cardinal Hume opens the Centre

have a duty to look frankly at the social conditions around us, and as Christians of all denominations to work together and with others to do what we can to address the specific needs which we find.’ Opening of the Hostel at the Cardinal Hume Centre, 8 November 1989 ‘We all share a common humanity. Every individual is worthy of dignity and respect and has a right to live a life in which their basic needs are met. A home is one of the most important human requirements, without which a person can feel devalued, alienated and rejected. It is in promoting the good of the human person that our society can recover its moral health and in doing so work to ensure the welfare of future generations.’

Cardinal Hume Centre newsletter, Spring 1998 ‘The family is so precious, so important, that we have got to do all we can, either in Government or in industry or business, to make it possible for families to be stable and have a proper environment for the children.’

‘To me the man that everyone called Cardinal Hume was Uncle George, a constant presence in the lives of my family, spending time with myself, my cousins and my children. I often think back to the experiences we shared, whether they were family gatherings or more purposeful activities, such as visiting Lourdes together. They are memories that will stay with me always. Through his actions, Uncle George showed us the importance of love. He knew that helping those most in need is an act both of love and of humility.’ Catherine Hickman, niece of the late Cardinal Hume.

Interview with the Sunday Programme, 1999 ‘It is essential to recognise that homelessness is a complex problem, with immediate and also long-term causes. I am no expert in these matters, but two of the most important reasons for homelessness are the increase in family break-up, and the growing shortage of affordable accommodation, particularly for the lower paid. In addition, of course, there are particular categories of people,

With the family on pilgrimage in Lourdes

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June 2019




Cathedrals Observed and Experienced Ships of Heaven: The Private Life of Britain’s Cathedrals, Christopher Somerville; Doubleday, London 2019; hardback ISBN 978 08575 23648 (An indicative price is given, but the book is offered at varying prices on the internet) Fr John Scott The Church of England has its particular share of woes with the reporting of declining attendance statistics, but points to a steady increase in the number of people who visit and worship in its cathedrals. Christopher Somerville as a travel writer takes an ecumenical and UK-wide approach to the 17 cathedrals which are his subjects. The Episcopal Church in Scotland, the Church of Ireland and the Church of Wales all have one representative, whilst Westminster Cathedral, Liverpool Metropolitan and St Patrick’s Cathedral, Armagh provide the Catholic perspective.

the world of glass makers and stonemasons. One could almost say he has an obsession with stone, different stones a hundred million years apart in age, some hard, some friable. Perhaps we can put it down to his having a geologist godson, who shows him around Worcester cathedral.

His Introduction suggests why cathedrals might be of interest: simply because they contain the stories of people, prelates to peasants. Assuming little knowledge on the part of the reader, he provides a ‘typical’ cathedral layout plan as a guide to words which will crop up in the text, and an eightpage historical review from Anglo-Saxon to ‘Modern Times’. Here the broad brush stroke approach made me disagree. Of the Reformation period, he writes: ‘The monasteries, so closely associated with the cathedrals, had become thoroughly rotten and corrupt’. No; so much research in the last 30 years has shown that the medieval Church was not the collapsing institution that the traditional Protestant narrative had claimed it to be. But let us pass on to the heart of the book, the cathedrals themselves.

Previous generations, and Catholics now, might well be surprised to hear of the latest ways of raising the money to keep some cathedrals going. The nave of Liverpool Anglican cathedral: ‘is bare and uncluttered. The seating was cleared away yesterday in order to accommodate 800 guests at a Barclays Bank dinner party in the cathedral’. Meanwhile Gloucester cathedral cashes in on the hordes of children who come on pilgrimage to the scene of three Harry Potter films.

Two cities are considered in the light of their two cathedrals: Armagh and Liverpool. Both have description of the transformation of relationships that occurred in the second half of the last century. Inevitably the names Sheppard and Worlock may mean more to those brought up in England, but similar friendships arose in Armagh. Somerville is sensitive to the way in which dark clouds can be both creative – the word Hillsborough carries so much emotion in Liverpool – and threatening – St Patrick’s, Armagh was spray-painted with Protestant slogans just a year ago. As a travel writer, he is strong on setting each cathedral within its landscape. Ely, with its low domination of the flatness of the fens, Lincoln, for centuries the tallest building in the world and St David’s, hidden in its hollow, are ideal subjects for him. Description, of course, requires an entry into 22

Of course, it is necessary to have a certain amount of ‘Who does what’ to explain how cathedrals work. Relationships between the bishop and the dean at Wells seem happy, but Somerville is not taken in, recounting the painful years of alltoo-public clergy dispute in Lincoln and the Occupy London experience which temporarily closed St Paul’s and ousted two of its clergy. His main theme, however, is the contrast between the apparent solidity of the buildings and the reality that they are, and always have been, in states of constant change – decaying, rebuilding, reordering and always struggling to stay afloat and buoyant.

For almost every cathedral he lists the local guides and staff who have shown him around, explained their commitment to the building and their faith (or lack of it), but this is not the case for Westminster, where he went around with the architect Jeremy Dixon (who is, nonetheless, an enthusiast for the Cathedral). Pleasingly, Somerville notes that we do not charge people to come in and he refers several times both to the homeless who make the Cathedral their daytime home and to those whom he finds praying: ‘[they] stand, sit and kneel together in the side chapels, interspersing their prayers with sibilant gossip … The cathedral’s day-to-day clientele embodies the idea of Roman Catholicism as a form of faith very much rooted in the secular world, as much about socialising as about devotion.’ But he describes the Cathedral, nonetheless, as ‘flamboyant’. Perhaps we, the faithful, make a good contrast to that? If you enjoy travel writing which includes a cross-section of enthusiasts in a variety of relationships with God and the structures built for him, Ships of Heaven will offer you an interesting read – take it a chapter a week, perhaps? Oremus

June 2019


Cathedral History: A Pictorial Record The Funeral Mass for Cardinal George Basil Hume OSB, OM

© Liam White Photography, 36 Westminster Mansions, London SW1P 3PB Sources: Westminster Record, July 1999 Cathedral Archives

Paul Tobin On Friday 25 June 1999, a beautiful midsummer day, in a packed Cathedral with hundreds outside in the piazza and millions watching live TV coverage on BBC2, the Funeral Mass of Cardinal Basil Hume (1923-1999) took place. In the congregation of nearly 2,000 were H R H The Duchess of Kent, representing H M the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, the Irish Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, other politicians and representatives of Catholic life in the country, as well as ecumenical guests, including the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey and his immediate predecessor, Lord Runcie. The monastic community of Ampleforth, where the Cardinal had been Abbot for 13 years prior to his appointment as Archbishop of Westminster, was well represented; they sang Vespers of the Dead the night before and a small group (Schola) sang the Suscipe from the Rite of Profession of a monk. This chant, with which a monk offers his life in service to June 2019


God, is also sung at his funeral, as his brethren commend his soul to God’s mercy. This took place after the Prayer of Commendation immediately before the coffin was carried to the place of burial in the Chapel of St Gregory and St Augustine. As the coffin was carried in procession, led by Bishop Vincent Nichols, the Diocesan Administrator during the interregnum, the choir sang the In paradisum from Fauré’s Requiem. As a singular mark of esteem for the late Cardinal, Pope St John Paul ll sent a Special Envoy, Cardinal Edward Cassidy, who was President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity. As Principal Celebrant he is seen reading from a book, held by Paul Moynihan, currently Cathedral Master of Ceremonies. Five other Cardinals were present: Cahal, Cardinal Daly of Armagh (seen to the left of the altar); immediately above are, from left to right: Thomas, Cardinal Winning of Glasgow; Adrianus, Cardinal Simonis of Utrecht; Josef, Cardinal Glemp of Warsaw and Polycarp, Cardinal Pengo of Dar-es-

Salaam. To the left of Cardinal Daly are Archbishop Pablo Puente, Apostolic Nuncio to Great Britain (1997-2004) and Archbishop Michael Bowen of Southwark (1977-2003). To the right of the altar are: former Westminster Auxiliary Bishops James O’Brien, Philip Harvey and Victor Guazzelli. Immediately to the right of the processional cross can be seen (partially) Bishop (now Cardinal) Vincent Nichols, who led the Final Commendation. The Committal was conducted by the then Cathedral Administrator, Mgr George Stack, now Archbishop of Cardiff. At Cardinal Hume’s request, the homily was given by Bishop John Crowley, his first Private Secretary, now Bishop Emeritus of Middlesbrough. It was both simple and effective, ending with the words: ‘Now that journey is over. He is safely home behind the curtain, face to face. Our deep love for him and our deep gratitude for the gift he was, provokes this final thought: if this was the gift of God, what must God be like, the giver of that gift?’ 23



St Aloysius Gonzaga (feast: 21 June) was born in Italy in the mid 16th-century. Destined for a military career, although his first spoken words had been the holy names of Jesus and Mary, he nonetheless decided on religious life at age 9, vowing perpetual virginity. After a time spent serving as a page in Spain, he returned to Italy, where, at age 18, he was able to overcome his father’s objections and join the Jesuits. Serving in a Milan hospital during a time of plague, he contracted the disease and died at the age of 23, his last word being, again, the name of Jesus. The tomb of St Aloysius in the church of Sant’Ignazio, Rome

Saturday 8 June

The Month of


Holy Father’s Prayer Intention: UNIVERSAL: That priests, through the modesty and humility of their lives, commit themselves actively to a solidarity with those who are most poor.

Saturday 1 June Ps Week 2 St Justin, Martyr 2pm Deanery Youth Confirmation (Bishop McAleenan) 6pm Mass for New Catholics (Cardinal Nichols) Sunday 2 June

7th SUNDAY OF EASTER 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Victoria – Missa Ascendens Christus Tye – Omnes gentes plaudite manibus Organ: Tournemire – Postlude (L’Orgue mystique XXIV) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Bevan – Magnificat octavi toni Gowers – Viri Galilaei Organ: Messiaen – Majesté du Christ (L’Ascension) 4.30pm Deaf Service Mass (Cathedral Hall) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Martin Baker (Westminster Cathedral)

Monday 3 June

Ps Week 3 St Charles Lwanga & Companions, Martyrs

Tuesday 4 June

Easter Feria 5.30pm Chapter Mass 7pm Friends’ Event: Alison Weir on Anna of Kleve: Queen of Secrets (Cathedral Hall)

Wednesday 5 June

St Boniface, Bishop & Martyr

Thursday 6 June

Easter Feria (St Norbert, Bishop) All day NHS Blood Transfusion Service in Cathedral Hall

Friday 7 June Easter feria


© Jastrow


Friday Abstinence

Easter Feria 3pm Mass for Matrimony (Cardinal Nichols) 4pm Extraordinary Form Mass (Lady Chapel) 6pm Victoria Choir sings at Mass

Sunday 9 June

PENTECOST 9am Family Mass 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Vierne – Messe Solennelle in C sharp minor Palestrina – Dum complerentur dies Pentecostes Palestrina – Dum ergo essent Organ: Tournemire – Fantaisie-Choral (L’Orgue mystique XXV) 12.15pm Parish Confirmation Mass (Cardinal Nichols) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Swayne – Magnificat primi toni Aichinger – Factus est repente Organ: J S Bach – Fantasia super Komm Heiliger Geist (BWV 651) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Jonathan Allsopp (Westminster Cathedral)

Monday 10 June

The Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church Ps Week 2

Tuesday 11 June

St Barnabas, Apostle 2pm St Vincent de Paul Festival Mass (Bishop McAleenan) 6.45pm Friends’ Quiz with Fish and Chip Supper (Cathedral Hall)

Wednesday 12 June

Feria 6.45pm Outreach Concert: St Paul of Tarsus

Thursday 13 June

OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, THE ETERNAL HIGH PRIEST 5.30pm Friends of the Holy Father attend Mass (Bishop McMahon)

Friday 14 June


Saturday 15 June

Friday Abstinence

Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday 10.30am Mass of Ordination to the Diaconate (Bishop Wilson) 12.30pm Mass cancelled 6pm Visiting Choir: St Matthew’s, Westminster

Sunday 16 June

THE MOST HOLY TRINITY 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Stravinsky – Mass Palestrina – O beata et benedicta Palestrina – O vera summa Organ: Tournemire – Triptyque (L’Orgue mystique XXVI) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Palestrina – Magnificat quarti toni Philips – Benedicta sit sancta Trinitas Organ: J S Bach – Fugue in E flat (BWV 552) 4.45pm Organ Recital: Ben Bloor (London Oratory)

Monday 17 June

Feria 5.30pm Cardinal Hume 20th Anniversary Mass

Ps Week 3

Tuesday 18 June

Feria 10.30am Education Service Mass (Cardinal Nichols) 5.30pm Opening Mass of the Quarant’Ore

Wednesday 19 June

Feria (St Romuald, Abbot)

Thursday 20 June

St Alban, Protomartyr 5.30pm Closing Mass of the Quarant’Ore, with Eucharistic Procession

Friday 21 June Friday Abstinence St Aloysius Gonzaga, Religious Saturday 22 June

Ss JOHN FISHER, Bishop, and THOMAS MORE, Martyrs 12.30pm Mass of Ordination to the Permanent Diaconate (Cardinal Nichols)

Sunday 23 June

THE MOST HOLY BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST (CORPUS CHRISTI) 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Josquin – Missa Pange lingua Victoria – Lauda Sion Hassler – O sacrum convivium Oremus

June 2019


What Happens and When

Organ: Tournemire – Fantaisie Paraphrase ( L’Orgue mystique XXVII) 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Incertus – Magnificat quinti toni Hassler – O sacrum convivium Organ: de Grigny – Pange lingua 4.45pm Organ Recital: Andrew Parnell (Ely) 5.30pm Commissioning of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion at Mass

Monday 24 June

Tuesday 25 June


© Norbert Kirchhoff

THE NATIVITY OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST 5pm Solemn Second Vespers 5.30pm Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Monteverdi – Messa a 4 voci da cappella (1651) Gibbons – This is the record of John Palestrina – Fuit homo missus a Deo Organ: J S Bach – Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam (BWV 684) Ps Week 4

Wednesday 26 June

Feria 7.30pm Grand Organ Festival Recital: Ekaterina Melnikova

Thursday 27 June

ST JOHN SOUTHWORTH, Priest and Martyr

Friday 28 June

THE MOST SACRED HEART OF JESUS No Friday Abstinence 12pm National Mass for Priests (Cardinal Nichols) 5pm Solemn Second Vespers 5.30pm Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Schubert – Mass in G Palestrina – Improperium exspectavit Organ: Tournemire – Prélude et Fresque (L’Orgue mystique XXVIII)

Saturday 29 June

The Immaculate Heart of Mary 6pm Visiting Choir at Vigil Mass: Ealing Abbey

Late 19th century statues of the two Apostles in the church of Ss Peter and Paul, Bardenberg

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.

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Sunday 30 JUNE

Ss PETER and PAUL, Apostles 10.30am Solemn Mass (Full Choir) Widor – Messe Widor – Tu es Petrus Organ: Mulet – Tu es petra 3.30pm Solemn Vespers and Benediction Palestrina – Magnificat primi toni Victoria – Tu es Petrus Organ: Vierne – Cathédrales 4.45pm Organ Recital: Alexander Hamilton (Westminster Abbey) June 2019


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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


A Better Resurrection Christina Rossetti I have no wit, no words, no tears; My heart within me like a stone Is numb'd too much for hopes or fears; Look right, look left, I dwell alone; I lift mine eyes, but dimm'd with grief No everlasting hills I see; My life is in the falling leaf: O Jesus, quicken me.

Alan Frost April 2019

Clues Across 1 & 5 Down: Composer who wrote a London Symphony and a Fantasia on a theme of Thomas Tallis (7,8) 6 --- Crucis, the Way of the Cross (3) 8 Vestment worn by priest over his shoulders for Mass, beneath his chasuble (5) 9 ‘Sons of -------’ (Boanerges), name given to James and John by Jesus (7) 10 Non-clerical members of the Church (5) 11 Song for sleepy children by Brahms (6) 13 Russian physiologist whose work with dogs has given us the notion of the ‘conditioned reflex’ (6) 15 City whose cathedral is known as the Frauenkirche (6) 17 Book of the Old Testament by a Jewish Queen (6) 20 Recently enthroned Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle (5) 21 Fat from wood, used in ointments (7) 23 Relating to creatures Br Adam OSB famously developed at Buckfast Abbey (5) 24 Fifth son of Jacob, founder of tribe of Israel (3) 25 St Aloysius -------, young Jesuit who died from treating plague victims, Feast Day 21 June (7)

My life is like a faded leaf, My harvest dwindled to a husk: Truly my life is void and brief And tedious in the barren dusk; My life is like a frozen thing, No bud nor greenness can I see: Yet rise it shall—the sap of Spring; O Jesus, rise in me. My life is like a broken bowl, A broken bowl that cannot hold One drop of water for my soul Or cordial in the searching cold; Cast in the fire the perish'd thing; Melt and remould it, till it be A royal cup for Him, my King: O Jesus, drink of me.

© Andrew Lloyd Webber Collection

Clues Down 1 Holy Communion given to a dying person (8) 2 Early Saint martyred with thousands of virgins in Germany, patroness of female students (6) 3 ‘The ---- and the Panther’, Dryden’s famous poem about differences between RC Church and Anglican (4) 4 Valuable piece of jewellery also known as mother-of-pearl (5) 5 See 1 Across 6 Type of sin that reduces, but does not remove all of the soul’s grace (6) 7 ‘The Blue ---- of Our Lady of Fatima’, founded in USA in 1946 for promotion of authentic RC teaching (4) 12 Notorious Borgia noblewoman whose father became a pope (8) 14 Name given to woman who wiped the face of Jesus during his Passion (8) 16 Romanesque architecture, typical of church style from mediaeval northern France (6) 18 Mother of Emperor Constantine who discovered the true Cross on pilgrimage (6) 19 Improbable weapon with which David slew Goliath (5) 20 Composer in Elizabethan England of glorious Masses for 3,4,& 5 Voices (4) 22 Hour of the day when the Angelus is prayed (4)

ANSWERS Across: 1 Vaughan 6 Via 8 Amice 9 Thunder 10 Laity 11 Cradle 13 Pavlov 15 Munich 17 Esther 20 Byrne 21 Lanolin 23 Apian 24 Dan 25 Gonzaga Down: 1 Viaticum 2 Ursula 3 Hind 4 Nacre 5 Williams 6 Venial 7 Army 12 Lucrezia 14 Veronica 16 Norman 18 Helena 19 Sling 20 Byrd 22 Noon


Christina, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti

To submit a poem whether by yourself or another for consideration, please contact the Editor – details on page 3. Oremus

June 2019


Henry VIII – the King of Endless Fascination Christina White

Forthcoming Events

Alison Weir comes to Cathedral Hall this month to give her talk on Anna of Kleve – Queen of Secrets, the latest in her book series on the wives of Henry VIII. I confess to knowing little about the queen who survived, other than that she had a penchant for card playing and certainly displayed a certain Tudor savviness when it came to negotiating a property settlement. She was to inherit Hever Castle from the disgraced Boleyn family, and Richmond Palace. Alison’s research is always robust so we can expect new insights into the queen who was rejected for her lack of beauty – though Henry seems to have appreciated her character and wit, and played cards with ‘his sister Anne’. Thomas Cromwell had been the prime mover and shaker in securing the alliance between his king and this daughter of Kleve and her rejection post marriage secured his downfall. Cromwell, of course, had been especially keen to align England with the protestant duchies of Europe; Henry certainly seems to have been rejected by the Catholic princesses, mindful of his reputation. Anne did not contest the requested annulment, made on the grounds of non-consummation and her earlier childhood betrothal to Francis of Lorraine, and for that Henry expressed his gratitude, allowing her to live at court with all the privileges of a member of the royal household. We have Holbein’s famous portrait of Anne – Henry thought the artist flattered his subject too much – and the words of the English chronicler Holinshead who described her as ‘a ladie of right commendable regards, courteous, gentle, a good housekeeper and verie bountifull to her servants’. The historian Robert Hutchinson OBE FSA has just published his latest work on Henry VIII, so the timing is perfect. He will be coming June 2019


Tuesday June 4: Talk by Alison Weir on Anna of Kleve: Queen of Secrets. This is the latest book in the historian’s series on the wives of Henry VIII. Cathedral Hall. Doors open at 6.30pm and talk is at 7pm. Drinks and book signing to follow. Tickets £10 Tuesday June 11: Quiz with fish and chip supper. Cathedral Hall. Doors open at 6.30pm and the quiz is at 6.45pm. Tickets £15

Anna of Kleve

to Cathedral Hall in September to speak about his book Henry VIII: The Decline and Fall of a Tyrant. He has specialised in the history of the Reformation and his talk will give us added insights into the murderous monarch. At both talks we will have books on sale, with refreshments to follow. Our quiz and curry night scheduled for late September has now been moved to Tuesday 1 October. We still have a fish and chip quiz evening planned for June, mindful of all those to whom curry and quiz is anathema. There are some tickets still available for the trip to Ingatestone in July, but the coach is booking up fast. Please contact the office soon if you wish to join the group. Do also follow the Cathedral website over the summer for the latest events updates. Our autumn newsletter will be posted to all members in early September.

Thursday July 4: Coach trip to Ingatestone Hall with Rory O’Donnell. The coach departs from Clergy House at 9.15am. We will visit the historic Petre family house where a House Mass will be celebrated. Lunch is included – please advise when booking if you require the vegetarian option. In the afternoon we will visit Thorndon Country Park (designed by Capability Brown) and the Petre Chantry Chapel. Tickets £50 Wednesday September 11: Friends’ Tour of the Cathedral and the Cathedral 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 Robert Hutchinson. Cathedral Hall at 7pm. Tickets £10

Contact us • Write to: Friends’ Office, 42 Francis Street, London SW1P 1QW • Call: 020 7798 9059 • Email: friends@ Registered Charity number 272899


Š Nilfanion


Celebrations at the Bar

The Bar Convent, on a busy street in York

Sr Gemma Simmonds CJ It is not often that bishops and other dignitaries gather to celebrate a group of people breaking the law. But Bishops Terry Drainey of Middlesbrough and John Crowley, his predecessor, together with Bishop Glynn Webster, Anglican Bishop of Beverley, came to the Bar Convent in York on 27 April with visitors from across Britain, Ireland, Europe and Africa to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the opening of a Catholic chapel in the Bar Convent at a time when England was still living under anti-Catholic Penal Laws. The general superiors of both branches of Mary Ward's sisters, Sr Jane Livesey CJ and Sr Noelle Corscadden IBVM travelled from Rome for the anniversary Mass which was also attended by the provincial leaders of the respective congregations in Britain, Srs Bernadette Boland IBVM and Frances Orchard CJ. Sisters were also present from Kenya, Zimbabwe and Spain, as well as from Ireland and across Britain. Recalling Mary Ward's early years as a Poor Clare nun, Mother Bernard Littlefair, former Abbess of the Poor Clare monastery of York and an alumna of the Bar Convent Grammar School, was in attendance, together with Dame Andrea Savage OSB, Abbess of Stanbrook Abbey. The Bar Convent is Britain's oldest living convent. Founded by the followers of Ven Mary Ward (1585-1645), who modelled her order on the Society of Jesus, it has housed Sisters and a school since 1686. Nine years before the first Catholic Repeal Act was passed in 1778, allowing Catholics to own property and inherit land, Mother Ann Aspinall determined to build a chapel both for the Sisters' own worship and for the use of neighbouring Catholics in York. Local architect Thomas Atkinson designed a domed chapel, which had to be hidden beneath the outer roof of the building to shield the Sisters from the religious turbulence of the period. He also designed the chapel to have eight separate exits and a priest's hiding hole in order to allow for the swift escape 28

of the priest and congregation in the event of a raid by the authorities. The magnificent altar depicts four Doctors of the Church and the emblem of the pelican feeding its young from its wounded breast. This emblem is repeated in a vestment which is thought to have been worn at the first Mass. Local donors, including many of the Sisters' neighbours, raised the equivalent of ÂŁ78,000 to fund the building work. Not all neighbours were supportive, however, and Mother Aspinall wrote: 'There are many persons who have expressed dissatisfaction about our building. They are very curious to know whether we are nuns or not, believing if we are, we ought not to remain here. They suspect our house is a convent'. Despite this opposition, the first Mass was celebrated in the chapel on April 27th 1769 by the chaplain, Fr Joseph Robinson SJ. The Jesuit connection with the chapel was marked at the anniversary by the presence of Fr Philip Endean SJ, who concelebrated the Mass with clergy from the diocese. After the various Catholic Relief Acts, the Sisters were permitted to wear their religious habit for the first time since the foundation of the convent and to run a school openly. The convent was eventually granted a licence to act as a public place of worship. The most precious relic held in the chapel is the hand of St Margaret Clitherow, a York butcher's wife pressed to death for sheltering priests in 1586. One of those priests was Mary Ward's cousin, Bl Francis Ingleby, hanged, drawn and quartered on the Knavesmire at York in the same year. The Bar Convent became the birthplace of another branch of Mary Ward's congregation, the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, or Loreto sisters, founded in Ireland by Frances Teresa Ball in 1821. Ven Mary Aikenhead, founder of the Irish Sisters of Charity, also made her novitiate at the Bar Convent before starting her first convent in Dublin in 1815. Oremus

June 2019


In retrospect: from the Cathedral Chronicle In the May number of the Cathedral Chronicle all our readers will have noticed what was labelled ‘A fine photograph of this year’s Palm Sunday Procession outside the Cathedral’. The group of dignitaries with the crowd as a background is undoubtedly picturesque, but the question has been very reasonably put: Where are the palms? His Eminence bears an elaborate and striking staff of flowers and leaves; and his immediate supporters are waving veritable palm branches; but what of the crowd who ‘cut down branches from the trees and strewed them in the way’, and who ‘took branches of palm trees and went forth to meet the Saviour’? Closer inspection of the photograph shows here and there sundry cross-like white specks, no doubt tiny fragments of withered palm leaves, but surely less significant than the green branches carried by the humble congregations of our smaller churches. A word of explanation may not be out of place. Up to our own time, palm leaves were quite unobtainable in Northern countries, though within the last few years the importing and providing them for Palm Sunday has become a not unlucrative trade. You can have them, as one sees from advertisements, of various sorts and sizes. But stately palm branches, such as those carried by the Cardinal’s deacons, are necessarily expensive. The Faithful, as a rule, if they have them at all, must needs be content with a mere scrap of leaf. Still, seeing that in the gospel no mention is made of other than palm branches, a certain devotional feeling has made many prefer the veriest fragment of the real thing … On the other hand, it should not be forgotten that the Church prescribes indiscriminately that the branches be of palm or of olive or of other trees. The olive branch was from the beginning the recognised substitute for palm, and Olive Sunday was almost as frequent an expression as Palm Sunday. The French, as we know, call the day Le Dimanche des Rameaux (Branch Sunday). In Italy, the carrying in the Procession of an olive branch is universal; palm branches even there are hard to get. In the North, people had to be satisfied with sprigs of box or the like. Usually small-leaved shrubs were chosen, such as had foliage resembling that of the olive tree, though of a brighter and more pleasing green. In the Middle Ages they often entwined with the branch such flowers as they could get at the season. One of the Processional Antiphons June 2019


sung alludes to this. But the favourite substitute for the palm or olive was a willow branch loaded with catkins. In the London churches of half a century ago they were quite common on Palm Sundays, and probably still linger in country missions. The willow was recognised as fittingly replacing palm, and is mentioned as so doing in one of the now omitted verses of the ninth-century hymn Gloria, laus [All glory, laud and honour], the characteristic feature of the Palm Sunday Sunday Procession. The reason of the choice was likely enough that Palm Sunday mostly comes in March, when there is not much that is green to be had. from the Westminster Cathedral Chronicle June 1919

The Choir, under Dr Terry’s direction was performing the most incredibly ambitious repertoire … Terry had a commanding and explosive personality and always demanded the highest standard. Sometimes we could hear his voice above the great volume of sound: ‘I can’t hear you’. There were other explosions as well, for he would brook interference from no one. Having lived most of his life on the Continent, Mgr Wallis’ English was delightfully quaint. Meeting a member of the Guild [of St Gregory] some time after his resignation, Mgr Wallis explained that he was obliged to leave the Cathedral because, as he said, ‘I burnt my breeches, and the Cardinal was displeased, so now you see the cat is disclosed!’ Mgr Thomas Croft-Fraser was a convert and a Scottish Laird and during the 1930s was the Master of Ceremonies at St Peter’s Basilica, Rome. ‘Tommy’, as he was known to his wide circle of friends, had a magnificent presence and was indeed an object lesson of dignity whenever he was celebrant at High Mass and Vespers. On one of the greater feasts, when he was hebdom at Vespers, he was about to make his stately entrance into Choir, along with his six assistants in their copes, when Fr Jack Porter was heard to exclaim: ‘Six tugs to bring in the Queen Mary!’ The untimely death of both these lovable priests some years ago is even now a great personal loss to me. from Some Early Memories of the Cathedral by Cyril Bennett in the Westminster Cathedral New Sheet June 1969 29


Saints in Mosaic – St Francis of Assisi Ben

My experiences in the Cathedral have been very nice since I have started going inside. I started going when I joined St Vincent de Paul Catholic Primary School in Year 4. I discovered that this school is the parish school of the Cathedral. The first time I went inside, I actually fell asleep as I was very young and was very tired. Every time I go inside the cathedral, I usually notice the giant cross of Jesus, right above the sanctuary. I feel very special when I go in, because I was once in a choir where we got to sing in the apse, which is the second thing I always think about when I go into the Cathedral. The third thing I think about is the side chapels, because when we do our plays, our director always mentions how we need to speak loud and clear for the people there, so they can hear us. If there is a very special event in the cathedral, I ask my family if we can go. I think that the Cathedral is a very popular place and should always be that way, because it has really changed the way I think about God and Jesus. I also like how it is a very large building so that many people around the world can come in all at the same time. The mosaic I have noticed is as you come in through the side doors at the front of the Cathedral. It is the mosaic of St Francis of Assisi on the left hand side. On the right hand side is the mosaic of St Anthony of Padua. Their mosaics coincidentally match, with the saint in the middle of the mosaic and one of them surrounded by birds and the other surrounded by fish. St Anthony is famous for his sermon to the fish and St Francis is also famous for his sermon to the birds. He is the patron saint of animals. The story of St. Francis was that he was a very handsome soldier. In battle he injured himself very badly and had to go back home. He was ill for quite a long time. He woke up one morning in his bed as a bird was singing to him through the window. That made him get out of bed and realise that he was getting better and wasting his time being a soldier. He went on his horse to the countryside and saw the ruins of a chapel. He went inside the ruins and saw a cross hanging, a bit like the one in the Cathedral. Then suddenly, it spoke to him: ‘Francis, rebuild my church which is everywhere in ruins’. Francis took that quite seriously. He started to go around collecting rocks and stones from people’s gardens. Gradually and eventually, he finished rebuilding the little chapel. However, God had bigger plans for him. My personal opinion about the mosaic is that they spent a lot of time on St Francis and the birds around him. I noticed that he is holding a white dove in his hands with an olive 30

branch in its mouth. That actually means the sign of peace. The birds I saw were herons, blue tits, doves, and two types of owls, Mallard ducks, wood pigeons, robins and Canada geese. The birds look as if they are all listening to St Francis. It is quite amazing how accurate the artist was in making the mosaic with tiny pieces of stones. St Francis is dressed in an orange robe with a red t-shaped cross on his chest. These clothes are actually a deacon’s robe. This is because St Francis was actually a deacon and never became a priest. He died before he actually became one. Whenever my dog becomes unwell, my mother always prays to St Francis. And whenever she does, he becomes well again! Therefore, you could say that he has caused lots of miracles because he is the patron saint of animals. I chose to write about him because I am very fond of animals, and like them a lot. If you are a member of the RSPB (Royal Society of the Protection of Birds) or just simply a lover of animals, you should go into the Cathedral, and really admire this mosaic, which really stands for the beauty of nature. Oremus

June 2019


Back to the Courts Care Not Killing is disappointed at the latest and unnecessary legal challenge to the Suicide Act by the campaigner Paul Lamb. He was paralysed in a road accident nearly three decades ago is again seeking permission for a doctor to assisted him in ending his life. He has previously argued that a blanket ban on assisted suicide and euthanasia is a breach of his human rights; however, these arguments have been rejected by the Courts. Judges concluded that Article 8 of the Human Rights Act 1998 (Right to respect for private life) is not an unlimited, but a qualified right and did not extend to compelling the state and doctors to provide the lethal cocktail of barbiturates to kill himself or to be killed. The Courts also made clear that changing the law is a matter for legislation. British Parliaments have, in fact, looked at this issue a dozen times since 2003. Most recently MPs were asked in 2015 to look at the current law in the Marris Bill, and comprehensively rejected changing the legislation by 330 votes to 118.

their lives cite fear of becoming a burden as the reason for their decision. Canada has seen a five-fold increase in the number of people ending their lives since changing its law in 2016. At the same time, there have been cases where those requiring expensive care have seen this cut or refused, but have been offered the drugs to kill themselves. Roger Foley from Ontario, who suffers from a neurological disease, secretly taped hospital staff offering him a “medically assisted death”, despite his repeated requests to live at home. The safest law is the one we currently have, which gives a blanket prohibition on assisted suicide and euthanasia. This deters exploitation and abuse through the penalties that it holds in reserve, but at the same time gives some discretion to prosecutors and judges to temper justice with mercy in hard cases. It does not need changing.’

Dr Gordon MacDonald, Chief Executive of Care Not Killing, commented: ‘We are disappointed that yet another unnecessary legal challenge is being brought. There have been numerous attempts to legalise assisted suicide and euthanasia through the Courts, all of which have failed, because the judges recognise the limitation of Articles 8 and 14 of the European Convention of Human Rights. They also said that this is a matter for parliamentarians, who have looked at the legislation in detail and rejected weakening our current laws. At the heart of this latest legal challenge is an attempt to treat the terminally ill and those with chronic conditions differently in law, by removing important and universal legal protections. According to the Kings Fund, there about 15 million people in England, who have a long-term or chronic condition for which there is currently no cure, and which are managed with drugs and other treatment, for example diabetes, arthritis and hypertension. The Courts and Parliament have previously recognised that any change to the law would put pressure, real or imagined, on vulnerable people to end their lives, because of fears of being a burden upon relatives, carers or on the NHS, which is short of resources. These are not imagined fears as we only have to look at what is happening in the tiny number of places that have legalised assisted suicide or euthanasia: places like Oregon and Washington, where a majority of those ending June 2019



Profile for RCWestminster

Oremus June 2019  

The Magazine of Westminster Cathedral

Oremus June 2019  

The Magazine of Westminster Cathedral