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Westminster Record

June 2018 | 20p

New Blessed Sacrament Shrine for London

The gift of marriage in Westminster

Upgrading the digital diocese

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Pages 10 & 11

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A Matter of Trust at the UN In May, Cardinal Vincent, accompanied by Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner Kevin Hyland OBE and other members of the Santa Marta Group, visited the US to continue to raise awareness of the twin scourges of human trafficking and modern slavery around the world, and to encourage other nations and organisations to join the fight. During the three-day visit, they addressed a United Nations conference of diplomats, law enforcement officials and charities, stressing that trust is the key component in fighting human trafficking. They called for greater collaboration between government, law enforcement, civil society, the Church and other non-government organisations. ‘This is an evil crime on an international scale and, as a former commissioner for the Metropolitan Police said, it requires a concerted international response, and that is where the Church comes in. I couldn’t say that but that is what police chiefs see and it is the reason this Santa Marta

partnership is growing and seeing results locally,’ said Cardinal Vincent of the role that the Church can play to bring together disparate groups. ‘The Church is active across the world. Victims of trafficking will often go to the Church as a trusted place where the first steps can be taken towards their rescue. Traumatised victims will trust Religious Sisters and that first step is essential. We must salute these women who lead on the efforts to tackle this crime.’ This focus on trusted relationships was at the heart of Sr Melissa Camardo’s address to the UN. She is one of the Religious women who run the Lifeway Network, an inspiring charity that rehabilitates victims in a similar way to the work of Bakhita House in London. In the collaboration between police and the Church trust is also being built. For the necessary leadership and accountability this trust is essential. ‘We need to recognise that organised crime is precisely that: organised. We are not. We need to develop these relationships and ensure the best

Kevin Hyland, Argentinian Police Commissioner Nestór Roncaglia and Cardinal Vincent at the United Nations

The Cardinal hears about the work of Religious sisters with survivors of human trafficking in New Jersey local response by effecting and developing the resources of the Church and police across the world,’ said the Cardinal. ‘Building trust takes time. It requires an honest assessment of failures as well as successes. Hearing police chiefs and Church leaders admit to failings demonstrates progress. We should not be afraid; we should have less fear about reputation,’ he added. President of the UN General Assembly Miroslav Lajcak met with the Santa Marta Group and praised their approach: ‘This is a surprising alliance but effective,’ he said. During their visit to New York, the Cardinal and Kevin Hyland also met with business leaders, emphasising the need to rehumanise business practices. This need to put ethics at the centre of their business should encompass both slavery-free

supply chains and also examining their fundamental business purpose. In his message to business leaders, the Cardinal said: ‘To combat trafficking which exploits people, treating them as an expendable commodity where profit is the only motivation, requires a more powerful motivation. That motivation has to be a radical commitment to the human.’ The Santa Marta Group also met with Simone Monasebian, Director of the UN Office for Drugs and Crime which has lead responsibility on trafficking, as well as Assistant Secretary-General and victims’ rights advocate Jane Connors. In addition to encouraging coordinated action at the UN, Cardinal Vincent spent a morning with Religious women, Catholic charities and US Immigration and Customs

officials (who take the law enforcement lead on combatting human trafficking) in New Jersey listening to their work on the ground. With the emphasis on trusted relationships, honesty in confronting issues and reassuring victims are the fruits of these trusted relationships in evidence. As one law enforcement official openly said: ‘In this broken world, law enforcement cannot achieve anything on its own.’ The visit ended with the Santa Marta Group receiving the UN’s Path to Peace Award at a ceremony in New York. The award recognises work that demonstrates commitment to the development of peace in the national and international arenas. To find out more about the Santa Marta Group go to www.santamartagroup.com


Editorial

Westminster Record | June 2018

Westminster Record – Contact us

Restoration and renewal in the air

Editor Mgr Mark Langham Archbishop’s House, Ambrosden Avenue SW1P 1QJ Managing Editor Marie Saba 020 7798 9031 Inhouse writers Martha Behan 020 7798 9030, Sharon Pinto 020 7798 9178 Photos Mazur/Catholicnews.org.uk Design Julian Game For distribution queries contact Michelle Jones 0161 908 5330 or email michelle.jones@thecatholicuniverse.com Print management and distribution by The Universe Media Group Ltd.

July publication dates Editorial deadline: 11th June 2018 Listings email: communications@rcdow.org.uk News and stories call 020 7798 9030 Email: communications@rcdow.org.uk Advertising deadline: 15th June 2018

To advertise contact Andrea Black/David Whitehead andrea.black@thecatholicunvierse.com david.whitehead@thecatholicuniverse.com 0161 908 5301 Produced by the Communications Office of the Diocese of Westminster. News and articles published in the Westminster Record do not necessarily represent the views of the Diocese of Westminster, unless specifically stated otherwise. Appearance of advertisements does not imply editorial endorsement.

A bit of sunshine restores the spirits, and renews our resolve, as we have discovered during this unpredictable spring. Restoration and renewal are in the air in our diocese also, reminding us that we are always growing as a community of faith. After years of painstaking work and with the resolve of a dedicated parish priest, the Church of Corpus Christi, in Maiden

Lane, has been restored to its original splendour, and will shortly be inaugurated as the Diocesan Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament. Drop by when you are next near Covent Garden. Not far away, the beautiful Stations of the Cross of the Jesuit Church in Farm Street have been released from a covering of lead paint and returned to their colourful glory. Out west, in Twickenham, restoration of the historic church of St James includes the installation of splendid new windows which honour the Portuguese connections to the parish. The bonds of marriage are ever fresh, but the Mass of Matrimony gives couples the opportunity to renew their commitment and express their devotion. Commitment is also at the heart of our vocation discernment group, who travelled to Tyburn Convent to hear how God’s call will renew their lives.

There is more art to be had in this issue: our diocesan photographer, Marcin Mazur, hot from running the London Marathon, has found time to launch a moving exhibition entitled ‘50 faces from the Holy Land’. Over at the Cardinal Hume Centre, you can read how a picture of David Bowie brought an unexpected windfall. It is a joy to hear from one of our priests, Fr Howard James, now working in Jamaica in the first of a series following some Westminster clergy working beyond the boundaries of the diocese. With reports of the Cardinal in New York and Poland, we are reminded our diocesan family extends across the world.

Royal flowers for St Joseph’s  An exquisite bouquet of flowers, designed by Philippa Craddock, used to decorate St George’s Chapel for the royal wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, has been donated to the patients of St Joseph’s Hospice, Hackney, the day after the wedding. The bouquet, made up of spring blooms, included forget-me-nots, sweet peas, jasmine, astrantia and sprigs of myrtle. An exhilarating moment for the charity, Nigel Harding, Chief Executive at St Joseph’s said: ‘We are honoured to receive this wonderful gift. The flowers are simply stunning and our patients were both surprised and delighted to receive them. A huge thank you to Philippa Craddock and her team, and of course to the royal bride and groom.’ The moment was exceptional for 89-year old respite patient, Pauline Clayton, an embroiderer by profession who had a hand in embroidering the 15-foot train Page 2

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Resident Pauline Clayton and staff at St Joseph’s display the royal bouquet

of Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding dress, in 1947 when she was only 19. She said, ‘We were on rationing then, so we weren’t allowed to sew on any embellishments, the train was embroidered. There were four of us girls working on it and

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we earned 49 and a half hours’ overtime! I helped to make many of her dresses during my 20-year career with Norman Hartnell. It’s a lovely coincidence to be at St Joseph’s and receive these wedding flowers, beautiful and special.’

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Tribute to Kevin Hyland

50 Faces at the Houses of Parliament

by Bishop Nicholas Hudson

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Following the resignation of Kevin Hyland as Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner on 17th May, Cardinal Vincent thanked him or his dedication and leadership. In a statement issued that day, the Cardinal said: ‘I am full of admiration for his pioneering work as Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner and before that for his outstanding leadership as head of the trafficking unit for the Metropolitan Police. He has been dedicated to the fight

against human trafficking for a number of years and during his time in office public awareness has grown about the extent of this terrible crime and the need to combat it on a number of different levels. He has been central to a number of different initiatives and efforts to counter human trafficking, including his role as senior adviser to the Santa Marta Group. ‘As Independent AntiSlavery Commissioner Kevin

has always argued for greater resources that have often been promised. He has also argued for a more co-ordinated approach to combatting this terrible crime. I sincerely hope that his considerable experience and expertise in this field will not be lost. ‘I also hope that the government will not only speedily appoint an independent commissioner but also increase its active support for the commission’s work.’

It felt fitting and timely indeed to bring to the Houses of Parliament ‘Fifty Faces of the Holy Land’, the photographic and audio exhibition held in May sponsored by the Holy Land Coordination to bring to prominence and support the lives of people living Israel, Gaza and occupied territories. Right and fitting because the Holy Land Coordination urges all who share concern for the plight of the Holy Land to keep their elected representatives informed of the worsening situation. Timely because it is 50 years since the war which resulted in the altered realities reflected on the faces here shown, and a century since the Balfour Declaration. Timely also because it coincided with the US government’s decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. I was pleased to present this exhibition to Tom Brake MP, on behalf of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales; and to revisit so many faces of people I had met with at the Holy Land Coordination.

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What moved me was to see faces not form one but from both sides of the political divide, true to the desire of the Coordination Committee, to hear how hopes for a peaceful settlement are held (or not held, as we heard this year) among Jews, Muslims and Christians. On being asked by many of the most striking face in the exhibition that touched me, it had to be that of Nazeeh. Born on the first day of occupation in 1967, he looks much older than his age of 50 years. He says he has skin like a gnarled olive tree because of the stress and suffering and the way he is forced to live: his house is just seven minutes from the place where he works but the Occupation Wall causes him to take a detour of 12 hours. I came away from Parliament feeling it is indeed vital that our MPs be kept aware of the suffering of Nazeeh and many others like him; and grateful to Tom Brake for his inspired support.’ 50 Faces of the Holy Land was photographed by Marcin Mazur.

Prayers for Gaza

600th Anniversary of Primacy of Poland

Cardinal Vincent Nichols is keen that the Catholic community of Gaza should not be forgotten at this desperate time. In a statement issued on 16th May, he said: ‘Today I have had a phone conversation with Fr Mario da Silva, the Catholic parish priest in Gaza, to offer our prayers and support. He told me that life is so hard and everyone is desperate with shortages of water and other basic necessities. He said that knowing Catholics in England and Wales and across the world remembered the people

On 29th April Cardinal Vincent travelled to Poland as Papal Legate at the celebrations of the 600th Anniversary of the Primacy of Poland. The Cardinal was in the city of Gniezno, whose Archbishops were first recognised as Primates in 1418, and have held the title of Primate of Poland ever since. Reflecting on his trip, the Cardinal said: ‘What struck me most of all was the faith of the people who really have an attachment to their patron saint. We went into the cathedral through the 12th century doors, cast in bronze,

of Gaza, and were praying for them was a great encouragement. ‘Please pray for peace in the Middle East and especially for the people in Gaza. They are living through traumatic times of remembrance and protest at the dramatically deteriorating humanitarian situation. This is a people who are both extremely vulnerable and deprived. Their fate is central to peace and peace can never be built on neglect. ‘In the lead up to Pentecost I echo Pope Francis’ call for prayers for the people in Gaza.’

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telling the story of the life, missionary work and martyrdom of St Adalbert. It's this sense of a continuous living history of Catholic faith that is still very alive and vibrant in the country. Follow us on Instagram at: @rcwestminster

‘For me this has been a very important visit to Poland and a way in which I come to appreciate and understand the depth of faith and the great contribution Polish Catholics can make in their own country and in the United Kingdom.’ Page 3


Westminster Record | June 2018

‘Global movement for change’ ‘We believe there is another way, a better way, in which every human life is cherished, where no one is abandoned to face their struggles alone… seeking to build a civilisation of love and a culture of life,’ said Bishop John Wilson, representing Cardinal Vincent, in his address to the crowd of estimated 4,000 people that gathered at the March for Life in London on Saturday 5th May. The march, which began from from De Vere Connaught Rooms and proceeded to Parliament Square, saw a multitude of pro-life groups represented, including the Good Counsel Network, Life Charity, London Irish United for Life, and Right to Life. The day was marked with activities, events and speeches, with the keynote address given by Clare McCullough of the

Good Counsel Network, followed by the march. It not only helped raise awareness of the issue of ‘abortion on demand’ facing current and future generations but also united individuals and organisations in their witness to the value of life at every stage from conception to natural death. Bishop John reflected, ‘Pope Francis has spoken forcefully about the dangers of a ‘‘throwaway culture” in which the victims are ‘‘the weakest and most fragile human beings – the unborn, the poorest, the sick, the seriously handicapped…in danger of being ‘thrown away’, expelled from a system that must be efficient at all costs’’… We believe there is… a better way… of protecting the most vulnerable in our society from the very first moment of their

Recognising migrants’ contribution London’s migrant community came to St George's Cathedral, Southwark, on the May Bank Holiday for the 13th annual Mass for Migrants in honour of St Joseph the Worker. The Mass is a joint celebration between the three Catholic dioceses in London, Brentwood, Southwark and Westminster, supported by the diocesan Justice and Peace Commissions and London Citizens. This year the Mass was led by the Archbishop of Southwark, Peter Smith. Concelebrating were the Eritrean Eparch Kidane Yebio,

Bishop of Brentwood Alan Williams, Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster Paul McAleenan and Auxiliary Bishop of Southwark Pat Lynch. During his homily, Archbishop Peter stressed that Catholic social teaching recognises the right of every person to emigrate, referencing the 46 ethnic chaplaincies in London. He addressed migrants in the congregation saying: ‘I want to thank you and the wider migrant community for your presence in this country; it is a great blessing.’

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© Fr Michael J Kane

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existence to the natural end of their life.’ Concluding his address, Bishop John said, ‘May the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, inflame our hearts always to choose life’ in the words of Pope Francis, ‘’Let us say ‘Yes’ to life and not death’’’.

The diocesan Rosary Shrine at St Dominic’s in Haverstock Hill held a prayer vigil for life in support of the march on the preceding evening, beginning with Mass celebrated by Fr Christopher Jamison at 7.30pm followed by all night silent Adoration ending with Mass and morning prayer at 8am.

On 29th April around the coast of England and Wales, Catholics gathered for the Rosary on the Coast, to pray for ‘life, faith and peace in the British Isles’. In our own diocese, not only did groups travel to the coast to join, but there were also simultaneous prayer groups praying the Rosary, notably at St Patrick’s, Soho and the Diocesan Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary at St Dominic’s Parish in Haverstock Hill.

St Mary’s University launches new research centre into education of marginalised children St Mary’s University, Twickenham has announced plans to launch a new Centre for Research into the Education of Marginalised Children and Young Adults. The centre will focus on the education of children and young adults not served by existing education systems, including young offenders, young people with severe behavioural and educational needs, care leavers, as well as young people who are in conflict zones or where civil society has broken down. St Mary’s already has strong links working with marginalised children and young adults through its work with the First Star Academy and its research into the provision of education for children and young adults in refugee camps. The St Mary’s First Star Academy, which won the Best Prospective Student Engagement Award at the 2018 Whatuni? Student Choice

Awards, was established in the spring of 2017 and helps young people in foster care from local authorities across London gain access to and flourish in higher education. During their time at St Mary’s, the young people receive academic support, to help them with their GCSE and A level results and to prepare them for higher education, life skills training, including financial management, healthy living, risk reduction and confidence building. The four-week residential programme is intended to ensure that those attending are as prepared as possible for higher education. It helps them decide the type of university they may want to attend through visits to other campuses, the course they want to study, and to explore financial support options available to them. The programme is also designed to help with

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emotional resilience, including social engagement skills. There is also further support programme for foster carers to improve foster placement stability. Support from Sir John Cass’s Educational Foundation, the Maria Marina Foundation, the Peter Cundill Foundation, the Atlantic Trading Charitable Trust and the Religious of the Assumption has ensured that project is fully funded for its first four-year cohort. Speaking of the new Research Centre St Mary’s Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise Rt Hon Ruth Kelly said: ‘This new centre will make a major difference to the lives of at-risk and marginalised young adults and children, both at home and around the world, as our research develops and grows. We are proud that we can build on our work with the First Star Academy to help more at risk young people.’

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Blessing of Restored Stations of the Cross by Fr Andrew Cameron-Mowat

Bishop Nicholas Hudson celebrated Mass on 16th May and blessed the newly restored Stations of the Cross at the Church of the Immaculate Conception, Farm Street. Many of the donors who funded the project as well as the three restorers were present for the ceremony. The date was significant as it marked the 200th birthday of the original carver and artist. The 14 carvings, which portray the Passion and Death of Christ, were originally brightly coloured; however, they were covered with leadbased paint in the 1920s owing to the deterioration of the original surface caused by the pollution in the atmosphere. So, for nearly one hundred years, they were regarded as interesting but not especially important works. In fact, these masterpieces represent the highest artistic

achievement of the renowned carver and artist Johann Petz, who was active in Bavaria and Austria from 1850 to 1870. He received many commissions for churches, altars and tombstones throughout Germany and Austria, as well as in England and the United States, and was highly sought after as a sculptor and church designer. The restoration work was undertaken by IFACS (International Fine Art Conservation Studios), led by Elsa Guerreiro, Richard Pelter and Ed Towers, who also recently restored the colour and gold of the Pugin high altar in the church. The complex work of restoration involved carefully removing the hard covering paint, making conservative repairs to the wood beneath, and repainting in colours that matched the original in shade and quality. 

by Fr Gladstone Liddle

In his homily Bishop Nicholas spoke of the significance of the Way of the Cross in Christian prayer, and said that, in the ceremony to follow, the Stations would be consecrated for use and that by praying them we too are consecrated. He hoped that the

Stations at Farm Street Church would remain in use for prayer and devotion for many centuries yet to come. A companion book with photos of each Station and appropriate prayers is presently in production and should be available soon.

Commemorating Portuguese contribution by Fr Ulick Loring

On Monday 9th April two new stained glass windows were dedicated in St James Church, Twickenham. One remembers the Portuguese dead of the

The window on the left commemorates the Portuguese war dead, and that on the right the humanitarian work of King Manuel II

First World War. becoming the first formal recognition in this country of the Portuguese contribution to the Entente war effort. Thousands of Portuguese soldiers served on the Western front and took heavy casualties. The second window remembers the humanitarian work of former King Manuel II of Portugal who was an active parishioner at St James’s. He served in the British Red Cross and endowed the orthopaedic unit at what is now Hammersmith Hospital. The windows were designed by Caroline Benyon, Fellow of the Master Painters who has designed windows at St Paul’s Cathedral and St Alban’s Cathedral. The windows were dedicated by Bishop John Wilson, and a commemorative plaque was unveiled by the Ambassador of Portugal HE Manuel Lobo Antunes and by Field Marshal Lord Guthrie of Craigiebank. The Ambassador then laid a wreath to commemorate the

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Celebrating 60 years at St Mary Magdalen

Bishop Wilson & Field Marshal Lord Guthrie War Dead. A guard of honour was provided by 562 Transport Squadron, 151 Transport Regiment and other personnel. The music was led by the parish choir and by the chair of the Portuguese community of Camden Town. The congregation, apart from many parishioners, included HRH Prince Sebastian of Luxembourg,

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currently serving in the Irish Guards, prominent members of the Anglo-Portuguese community, the outgoing Deputy Mayor of Richmond Cllr Benedict Dias, Andy Cole, Chair of Governors at St Richard Reynolds Catholic College, Sir Vince Cable MP, and Dr Ruth Kelly, Pro Vice Chancellor at St Mary’s University. Follow us on Instagram at: @rcwestminster

On Sunday, 6th May Cardinal Vincent celebrated Mass at St Mary Magdalen Church, Whetstone to mark the 60th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone of the present church by Cardinal William Godfrey in 1958. The parish had been founded in 1926, although in modern times Mass had been celebrated from the 1870s, first in a private house, then after the First World War over a bakery, in the Black Bull Inn and eventually in a chapel of ease built in Athenaeum Road in 1924. In 1926 the parish was entrusted to the care of the Fathers of Sion who acquired land and built a larger temporary church. Plans were drawn up for a permanent church in red brick, Romanesque style with grand bell tower. Construction was due to start in October 1939, but was shelved with outbreak of war. After the war, in 1957 work began on the new church but with a much reduced budget and design. The church was opened in October 1958 for public worship and consecrated on 20th June 1979 by Cardinal Basil Hume. The celebration included the blessing of a commemorative plaque to the founding pastors, the Fathers of Sion and especially Fr Jeremiah Ryan in whose time the church was built. Several priests in association with the parish joined us in the celebration including: Fr Philip Law, previous Parish Priest, Fr Nigel Woolen and Fr Michael Thomas (both vocations from the parish), Fr Gerry McFlynn and Fr Carlo Bonelli, a Consolata Missionary. To continue the celebrations this year, a garden is being created on the grounds of the church as a quiet space commemorating the centenary of the end of the First World War. In thanks to God for his past blessings and pray that he will bless us with peace in the years to come. Page 5


Westminster Record | June 2018

St Gregory’s encourages sustainability champions

St Gregory’s Catholic Science College, Harrow has been shortlisted for the 2018 Sustainable Schools TES Award in recognition of their achievement in encouraging a new generation of sustainability champions. One of the few secondary schools in London to hold an Eco-Schools Green Flag Award, St Gregory’s has demonstrated a commitment to sustainability by embedding environmental teaching throughout the school. Pupils are engaged in a wide range of eco activities from upcycling competitions to vegetable growing in the school’s Eco Garden. Their enthusiasm is not limited to the school as pupils are also dedicated to improving their community through gardening and litter

picking in their local park and inspiring local businesses to sponsor flower baskets along Kenton Road. The winners will be revealed at the TES gala awards evening on Friday 22nd June. Headteacher Andy Prindiville commented: ’This is a wonderful accolade for St Gregory’s being one of only eight schools to have been shortlisted which is the result of hard work and dedication of the staff, governors, local community and pupils of St Gregory’s’. TES editor Ann Mroz adds: ‘It is wonderful to see such innovative ideas and best practice emerging from our schools and teachers. We had a record year for entries and the best standard so far, a proud moment for those shortlisted.’

St Thomas More: The Power to Be ‘Every child has the power in them to achieve great things, no matter what background they come from’, was the core message carried by the CAFOD Young Leadership programme held at St Thomas More School in Wood Green. Five Sixth Form students participated in the programme and received excellent sessions on developing skills essential for life. It helped pupils learn about justice issues and develop transferable skills like leadership, communication, time management, prioritization and analytics, professionally and socially,

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which help to build a successful line of capable young leaders. Led by a member of CAFOD, the students were introduced to the ‘Power to Be’ campaign, which taught students to dare to dream of being anyone they wish to be. Students were positively motivated by the campaign and are using the skills learnt from the sessions to inspire others to develop to their full potential. Students were awarded a certificate of participation to make them feel valued for the interest shown and time devoted towards these sessions.

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6 in 6000: Cardinal Pole students win national debate competition The Cardinal Pole Catholic School debate team have won the 2018 Debate Mate competition, edging out over 240 schools nationwide to the title. Alec Lau, Taiwo Olaojo, Edward Ntalindwa Badege, Philip Webb, Katie Lowbridge, and Boran Sis competed with over 6,000 other students to be crowned this year’s winners. On Monday 14th May the Cardinal Pole team travelled to the House of Lords for the Urban Debate League Grand Final. Beating strong competition from Sydenham School in Lewisham they clinched the national title. In a daze of euphoria, Katie remarked, ‘The experience has been truly phenomenal!’ The motion up for debate during the grand final was ‘this house would require elected politicians to have their immediate family use only the local education and NHS services’. Edward strongly believes that this topic is relevant as it ‘helps fight against economic and social imbalance by having progressive ideas of more inclusion. If that doesn’t involve bringing the masses up, it can involve bringing the select few down. That way we are all on the same level, and that’s when we can start to progress socially and financially’.

Anneka Hartley and Katie Hayward run the debate club at Cardinal Pole. Anneka explains ‘as a school, we know how talented and determined our students are, it is fantastic that now everyone else can see Hackney pupils as the best in the country!’ Debate Mate is a charity that endeavours to improve students’ critical and creative thinking, teamwork and leadership skills through teaching them the art of public speaking. The programme provides participating students with 17 weeks of extra-curricular training from trained university students who mentor teams through a series of fun and interactive exercises and games. Cardinal Pole’s own mentor was ex-student Jesse Williams who said of the experience that ‘having been a

Debate Mate student at Cardinal Pole from 2009-2011, I knew first-hand the positive affect that debating can have on students. I was extremely privileged to come back to Cardinal Pole's debate club as a mentor, coaching the students over the course of the academic year. To see them win the Urban Debate League was amazing for me as a mentor because I was able to witness the incredible growth of the students over the course of the year, both in terms of debating skills and personal development.’ Philip emphasised the importance of the programme and thanked Jesse, saying ‘if you find the right mentor they give you this better feeling about yourself. They show you a skill you never knew you had, and help you advance your current skills.’

Douay Martyrs join hands for children overseas Pupils from the Douay Martyrs Catholic Secondary School, Ickenham raised £5,000 for the CAFOD Appeal 2018 engaging in four weeks of fundraising activities which included raffle ticket sales, cake sales, unwanted gift sales, guess the number of sweets in the jar and other sponsored events. Students went all-out, giving up their lunch-time, with each Form encouraged to raise a minimum of £60. Headteacher Tony Corish commented, ‘Our school is a long-running supporter of CAFOD, donating thousands of pounds every year. This year, our efforts doubled in size due

to the special UK Match Funding. The amount raised will be matched by the Government, helping tackle child malnutrition in Zimbabwe, Eritrea and Zambia.’

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School Chaplain Luisa Foley added, ‘Every year pupils outdo the previous year’s efforts which demonstrates love and reflects the truth that we are all God’s children, caring for one another.’

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Iconic artwork discovered Winter Shelter Thanksgiving Service at Cardinal Hume Centre by Paola Greco The annual Thanksgiving Service, following the end of another season at the Winter Shelter Project Hounslow, was held at Our Lady of Grace Parish Centre, Chiswick on Tuesday 22nd May. The service was attended by a great number of volunteers from all the churches of different Christian denominations. It was led by Fr Michael McGuire, Assistant Priest, and Parish Priest Fr Michael Dunne gave a

Running for the homeless

An iconic photographic print of David Bowie anonymously donated to the Cardinal Hume Centre’s charity shop in Westminster has fetched £1,000 at auction, making it one of the highest value single items ever sold in the shop’s 31-year history. The money raised by the shop goes towards the vital work of the Cardinal Hume Centre, which helps individuals and families overcome poverty and the threat of homelessness. Entitled Moonage Daydream Collage, the striking artwork by legendary rock photographer Mick Rock, was found in a bag of pre-loved clothes. On discovering the unframed 35.5cm x 28cm print, shop volunteer Valerie Sutton suspected the item was an original and contacted Rosebery’s auction house who duly confirmed its authenticity. Volunteer Valerie Sutton said: ‘This was a really exciting thing to happen in my first week working here. My working background is in the arts and so it was a real joy to

come across this unexpected piece. It’s an amazing thing to be donated and I still can’t believe that it was just tucked away in a large bag of clothes. I’m so pleased I was there that day… and that we didn’t spill anything on it!’ Shop manager, Jayati Pramanik, said: ‘We receive an eclectic mix of donations at our shop, including gorgeous designer clothes, shoes and jewellery. But we’ve never received such a valuable, iconic piece of art. It’s just remarkable. The money it has raised will make a huge difference to the people we help here at the Cardinal Hume Centre.’ The Cardinal Hume Centre is currently looking to recruit additional volunteer retail assistants to work at its charity shop, based at 110 Horseferry Road SW1. The shop accepts donations of high quality, preloved items and is open from 10am to 4pm Monday to Friday. For more details on how to apply, please contact www.cardinalhumecentre.org. uk/help-us/volunteering

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brief address to thank all the volunteers for their dedication and hard work in providing a friendly and caring atmosphere for all our guests. After the service, the volunteers had an opportunity to meet for the first time and talk about their personal experiences. The shelter ran from 4th December to 29th March this season and saw some 31 guests being provided with a hot dinner and breakfast, and a bed for the night during the very cold winter spell. There have been ups and downs this season. We could sense that after a couple of weeks all our guests were feeling at home in our churches and left in the morning knowing that they would return in the evening to another warm and welcoming atmosphere. Sadly, we were also notified of the death of two of our guests for whom life on the streets had become too hard. The Shelter Project Hounslow started seven years ago thanks to the hard work, compassion and dedication of a handful of volunteers and just three churches taking part, and

gradually developed in an extensive project. There are now 10 churches committed to opening as a shelter to welcome in 15/16 homeless men each night. In total, there are approximately 30 churches from Hounslow, Ealing and Richmond Boroughs sending volunteers to work at these shelters as mixed teams. The project won the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service in 2017, the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK to recognise outstanding work in their communities. The awards were created in 2002 to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee and winners are announced each year on the anniversary of the Queen’s Coronation. This award has been made possible by all the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. It would be fair to give thanks and pay tribute to all those who have worked together to provide a friendly and caring atmosphere: welcoming our guests, giving them respect and dignity as well as food and a bed.

Marcin Mazur, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference photographer, whose images appear regularly in the pages of the Westminster Record, ran the London Marathon for the first time, hoping to raise £1,500 for the Cardinal Hume Centre. To his delight, the total raised was nearly £3,000, including Gift Aid.

Cardinal Vincent has joined 800 million users of Instagram. You can find him by searching for @cardinalvincentnichols.

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Page 7


Westminster Record | June 2018

A Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament for London by Fr Alan Robinson

Corpus Christi, the hidden gem in the very heart of Covent Garden, has stood here for over 140 years. To those who have visited: a dark, dusty building, much in need of some love and care, the blackened painted walls more reminiscent of the Victorian smog in which it was built, than the heavenly Kingdom it was meant to portray. This was not the vision for this building when it was opened. When he preached at the opening Mass on 20th October 1874, Cardinal Manning declared: ‘A sanctuary has been opened to be specifically devoted to the adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.’ This was the first Catholic Church in this land to be dedicated to Corpus Christi after the Protestant Reformation and it was built in reparation for the sins committed against the Blessed Sacrament in those days and in the centuries that followed. Cardinal Manning opened the church to reaffirm the beating heart of our Catholic life, the Mass, i.e., the earthly reality and presence of the Body and Blood of Christ. Corpus Christi soon became a centre for Eucharistic devotion, and many well-known names are connected with this historic church. The hymn much loved by English-speaking Catholics around the world, Sweet Sacrament Divine, was written by Fr Francis Stanfield, Parish Priest of this church in the early 1880s. Mgr Ronald Knox preached at the 40-hour Devotions every year for nearly 30 years. His famous sermons were later compiled in the books Between Heaven and Charing Cross and Window in the Wall. Cardinal Manning's successor, Cardinal Vincent, requested that Corpus Christi become the jewel it was designed to be, the Eucharistic Shrine of the diocese. After a great deal of restoration work over the last few years, the church is now refurbished, particularly the sanctuary, with fresh Page 8

colouring and shimmering gold leaf. The sanctuary has been restored to resemble the inside of a tabernacle, the gold wall signifying the majesty of the throne upon which Christ reigns over the universe. Three angels sit over the tabernacle with thuribles of burning incense, reminding us of God’s transcendence and that, in the sacrifice of the altar, heaven and earth are intrinsically linked. In the words of the Second Vatican Council, it is here that ‘we take part in a foretaste of the heavenly liturgy’ which is to come. The way the sanctuary leads our eyes to eternity reminds us that we do not come to God alone. When we approach the altar, we join ourselves with the countless angels, saints, thrones and dominions who praise and glorify God on high. It is here that the entire cosmos joins together as one in worship of God. As Cardinal Ratzinger reminds us in his book Spirit of the Liturgy, ‘the cosmos is not a kind of closed building’ or ‘a stationary container’ but rather a movement towards our creator. On 3rd June, Cardinal Vincent will celebrate Mass and lead us in procession of the Blessed Sacrament. He will raise Corpus Christi parish to the dignity of the Shrine of the Blessed Sacrament: an important day, both, for the diocese and the parish. And so, the building work is over but the real work is about to begin. For here is the Shrine, to encourage and promote devotion and love for our Saviour in the Blessed Sacrament: to help revitalise Eucharistic evangelisation, the heart of our life. Almost two years ago we launched the Sodality of the Blessed Sacrament, which encourages devotion to the Mass and the Eucharist. The Confraternity is open to new members who wish to join with currently over 300 members worldwide. A Mass is celebrated on the first Thursday of the month, and is offered for the intentions of all

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members. At these Masses there is a different guest preacher who offers a reflection on distinct aspects of the Blessed Sacrament. All members receive these homilies and other Eucharistic catechesis in a monthly newsletter together with a sodality badge in the shape of a monstrance. At Corpus Christi, we’re encouraging you to arrange bringing members of your parishes on pilgrimage to the Diocesan Shrine: First Holy Communion groups, school visits, Confirmation candidates, any other groups or individuals. You can celebrate Mass here, Exposition, Benediction, a procession of the Blessed Sacrament, a tour: any or all of it can be arranged, to help people feed their faith. If you can’t visit in person, Mass can be offered at the Shrine for your intentions: or you can have a lamp burning in the sanctuary for one week at a time before the Blessed Sacrament. All of these things, and joining the Sodality of the Blessed Sacrament, can be arranged by clicking on our menu tab ‘Get Involved’ on our website https://corpuschristimaidenla ne.org.uk/ .

The sanctuary before (L) and after (R) the restoration

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Westminster Record | June 2018

London’s Most Hallowed Space

by Fr Nicholas Schofield

I recently attended a memorial service at the London church of St Giles-in-the-Fields, just off Charing Cross Road and Shaftesbury Avenue. It was, I thought, an appropriate location for such an event, for the deceased gentleman had had a great love for English literature and at this church the children of Milton, Shelley and Byron were baptised and the poet Andrew Marvell interred. The church building itself is typical of Georgian respectability and was designed by Henry Flitcroft, the son of William III’s gardener. Unusually for central London churches, it is surrounded by a green space, once used as its churchyard and full of surprising secrets. The church originated as a leper hospital founded in 1101 by Matilda of Scotland, wife of Henry I. St Giles was a popular patron for lepers, cripples and

little village that had grown up around it. The area was at first sparsely populated, with a population of around 350 in the 1550s, but it soon grew into a crowded suburb, where rich and poor lived alongside each other. The poor, many of them, by the eighteenth century, Irish Catholic immigrants, lived in slums known as the ‘Rookeries’ and gave William Hogarth the inspiration for his famous ‘Gin Lane’ cartoon. As a reflection of the growing suburb, the church of St Giles was rebuilt in the contemporary style twice in the 1620s and 1730s. According to Peter Ackroyd, ‘the invocation and loneliness first embodied in the 12th century foundation has never entirely left this area; throughout its history it has been the haunt of the poor and the outcast.’ ‘It was in every sense a crossroads,’ continued Ackroyd, an ‘entrance and exit’ and a ‘crossroads between time and eternity’. The graveyard at St Giles was the final resting place for the rich and the poor, the good and the bad, and many of the victims of the plagues that regularly hit London, including the Great Plague of 1665. For many years, gallows © Paco Maldonado stood near the churchyard, beggars, and his churches can where Flitcroft Street now meets often be found on the outskirts St Giles High Street, and on their of towns. The medieval hospital way from Newgate to Tyburn located at this isolated spot was condemned criminals would run by the one of the lesserstop at the churchyard gate to known military orders founded drink a strengthening ale from at the time of the the ‘St Giles Bowl’. The crusades: the Order of condemned often reached the St Lazarus. During the ‘Triple Tree’ inebriated, which 14th century, there were was perhaps a small mercy. criticisms that the Lazars (as I wondered whether any they were called) were putting of the Catholic martyrs were the affairs of the Order ahead of fortified here in such a way. caring for the lepers. On several Some of them certainly returned occasions the king, who to the churchyard for burial: continued to see St Giles as a a favourable option given the royal foundation, intervened by alternative of the remains being making appointments to the flung into a mass grave or hospital management and displayed across London as a briefly transferred the institution deterrent to others. These to the care of the Cistercians. include 11 of those martyred in At the Reformation the 1679 as a result of the fictitious institution was dissolved, as was Popish Plot to assassinate the leper hospital at nearby St Charles II. The first to be buried James’, which was transformed here, in January 1679, were into a royal palace. In 1542 the Blesseds William Ireland, a old hospital chapel of St Giles Jesuit priest, and John Grove, became the parish church for the described by Challoner as ‘a

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Catholic layman, employed as a servant by the English Jesuits in their affairs about town.’ Ireland’s kinsman, Richard Pendrell, had been buried at St Giles eight years previously and is described on his memorial as ‘Preserver and Conductor to His Majesty Charles the Second of Great Britain after his Escape from Worcester Fight in the year 1651’. Blessed William himself protested a similar loyalty on reaching Tyburn, which he called ‘the last theatre of the world’, where he prayed that God ‘shower down a thousand and a thousand blessings upon his Majesty.’ The following month it was the turn of Blessed Robert Greene, ‘an ancient feeble man, cushion-keeper of the Queen’s chapel’, and his servant Blessed Lawrence Hill, both accused of murdering Sir Edmund Berry Godfrey, the magistrate involved in investigating the alleged plot, whose sudden death increased the anti-Catholic frenzy. The two men strenuously denied the allegations made against them. The executions and burials continued: the Benedictine Blessed Thomas Pickering, the five Jesuits Blesseds Thomas Whitebread, William Barrow (alias Harcourt), John Fenwick, John Gavan and Anthony Turner, and the barrister Blessed Richard Langhorne. The most high profile martyr to be buried at St Giles, however, is no longer there: St Oliver Plunkett (pictured), Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland. After being hanged, drawn and quartered on 1st July 1681, his body was buried in two tin boxes beside the five Jesuits on the north side of St Giles. In 1683 the remains were successfully exhumed, even though a woman had been buried above him, and smuggled to the English Benedictine monastery at Lamspringe, near Hildesheim in Germany. A member of the community, Dom Maurus Corker, had befriended Plunkett while imprisoned at Newgate and had assisted him in his last days. He Follow us on Instagram at: @rcwestminster

was at the time President of the English Benedictine Congregation and may have admitted the Archbishop as a ‘confrater’ of his abbey shortly before his execution. It was fitting, then, that the martyr’s body was enshrined in the abbey church, alongside other relics, such as the head of St Thomas of Hereford; Corker’s desire, writes one modern historian, was to create ‘a pantheon of English saints and martyrs which proclaimed the holiness and continuity of the English Catholic community.’ The body was later translated to Downside Abbey. Plunkett’s head, meanwhile, was brought to Rome and then transferred to Armagh and Drogheda, where it can be venerated at the church of St Peter to this day. The churchyard of St Giles may appear to the casual passerby as a convenient green space to sit down, enjoy a sandwich and catch up with the social media. In actual fact it is one of London’s most hallowed spots, with the remains of eleven beatified martyrs hidden beneath the ground, silently witnessing to the faith and awaiting the day of resurrection.

© Fr Lawrence Lew OP

Page 9


Westminster Record | June 2018

Westminster Record | June 2018

The gift of the Sacrament of Matrimony: No longer two, but one The most beautiful thing God has created by Fr Ivano Millico

‘Marriage is the most beautiful thing God has created.’ Pope Francis pronounced these words on 1st October 2016 while on an official visit to Georgia. Virtually the whole Catholic population, less than one per cent, had gathered in the Church of the Assumption of Our Lady in Tbilisi to dialogue with the Holy Father. Amongst them a married couple raised a question, asking for help: is it possible to believe in marriage? Can we still have faith in marriage? What follows are ‘seven words’ on marriage, your marriage, along seven chapters. They are mainly words pronounced on your wedding day, taken from the Rite of Marriage; words found on the lips of married couples in the Bible; words of poetry and drama; words of advice from priests, Popes and even saints!

I take Thee … At the centre of every marriage are these words: ‘I take Thee’. What do they mean? In the Latin Rite of Marriage, the expression used for ‘I take’ is ‘accipio’. The Latin verb ‘accipere’ means much more than ‘to take’, it means: ‘to receive’, ‘to welcome’. When a man and a woman get married, one does not ‘take’ the other, but ‘receives’ another. The ‘DNA’ of marriage is a DNA of welcoming, openness and communion.

‘I take Thee’ means ‘I welcome Thee’. ‘When we hear this word,’ notes Pope Francis ‘we immediately think of something to do. But in reality welcoming is a more profound disposition: it requires not only making room for someone, but being a welcoming, available person, accustomed to giving oneself to others. As God does for us, so we do for others. Welcoming means putting things into perspective, setting right my

Page 10

way of thinking, understanding that life is not my private property and that time does not belong to me. It is a gradual parting from all that is mine: my time, my rest, my rights, my plans, my agenda. One who welcomes gives up the ‘me’ and allows ‘you’ and ‘us’ to enter his life.’ (Address to the Vincentian family on the fourth centenary of the charism, St Peter’s Square, 14th October 2017) To marry is to ‘receive’ another person as he is, as she is, into your own life. It is not about trying to change that person so to fit into your ideas or to suit you according to your expectations, but it is about loving that person, to say ‘yes’ to that person. In this sense, marriage is a real personal transformation from ‘me’ to ‘you’ and ‘us’. In marriage one ceases to be an individual and becomes a person, that is, a sincere and definite gift of oneself to another. In fact marriage proves to be ‘the most

effective antidote to unbridled individualism’. (Pope Francis, Video message to the participants of the Third International Symposium on the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia convoked by the Italian Episcopal Conference’s Office for the Pastoral Care of Families) And all of this is possible because at the centre of Christian marriage is the person of Jesus Christ, the loving gift of himself.

Our air, our ‘human environment’ is corrupted by a real form of ‘pollution’ that corrodes souls and confounds minds and hearts, producing false illusions. This pollution is not mere selfishness or the old narcissism, it is much more, it is a real form of egolatry. Addressing the Pontifical Academy for Life, Pope Francis spoke, as no one else before him, about this sickening and polluting air we breathe every day:

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Human beings seem now to find themselves at a special juncture in their history, in unchartered territory, as they deal with questions both old and new regarding the meaning of human life, its origin and destiny. The key feature of this moment is, in a word, the rapid spread of a culture obsessively centred on the mastery of human beings - individually and as a species - over reality. Some have even spoken of an egolatry, a worship of the self, on whose altar everything is sacrificed, even the most cherished human affections. This approach is far from harmless, for it induces people to gaze constantly in the mirror, to the point of being unable to turn their eyes away from themselves and towards others and the larger world.  The spread of this approach has extremely grave effects on every affection and relationship in life. (Address to the General Assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life, 5th October 2017) Christian marriage, the covenant between man and woman in marriage and family, not only is the antidote against this pollution but the place where the real meaning of being man and woman can be preserved. This meaning is connected with the capacity for communion of man ‘who is not just something, but someone. He is capable of self-knowledge, of self-possession and of freely giving himself and entering into communion with other persons’. (Catechism of the Catholic Church 357, cf Pope Francis, Laudato Si’ 65) This ‘capacity’ is part of the grace of the Sacrament of Marriage, capacity to make space for another and welcome this person in my life.

‘We are called to be holy by living our lives with love’

At the annual Mass in thanksgiving for the Sacrament of Matrimony at Westminster Cathedral on 19th May 2018, Cardinal Vincent told couples present that ‘this holiness to which the Lord calls you will grow through small gestures’. At the beginning of his homily the Cardinal invited the couples to think about the advice they would give Harry and Meghan, or any other newly-married couple, on the day of their wedding. He spoke about Pope Francis’ call to everyday holiness, detailing how the Pope ‘likes to contemplate the holiness present in the patience of God’s people’ and how everyday holiness is ‘found in…those who, living in our midst, remind us of God’s presence’. Cardinal Vincent emphasised that this patience and holiness should be the foundation of our relationships with others.

Mazur/Catholicnews.org.uk

To finish, he again referred to Harry and Meghan, saying the advice that the couples there today would give them would be very similar to what God wishes for them in their marriages: the gift of everyday love and holiness. He invited the couples to pray for God to ‘renew within them that initial dedication’ and be joyful that ‘these promises of marriage endure and give shape to our lives’. During the Mass the couples renewed their marriage promises and were blessed by the Cardinal. The Mass for Matrimony has been an annual event since 2008. This year it was attended by 640 couples celebrating milestone anniversaries, over half of whom were celebrating 40-plus years of marriage. Over 70 children were also present to witness their parents renewing their marriage vows.

Fr Ivano Millico is Assistant Priest at Holy Trinity Brook Green. This article is an extract from his CTS booklet ‘7 Words on Marriage’ and is printed with kind permission from CTS. Follow us on Twitter at: twitter.com/RCWestminster

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Page 11


Westminster Record | June 2018

Westminster Record | June 2018

The gift of the Sacrament of Matrimony: No longer two, but one The most beautiful thing God has created by Fr Ivano Millico

‘Marriage is the most beautiful thing God has created.’ Pope Francis pronounced these words on 1st October 2016 while on an official visit to Georgia. Virtually the whole Catholic population, less than one per cent, had gathered in the Church of the Assumption of Our Lady in Tbilisi to dialogue with the Holy Father. Amongst them a married couple raised a question, asking for help: is it possible to believe in marriage? Can we still have faith in marriage? What follows are ‘seven words’ on marriage, your marriage, along seven chapters. They are mainly words pronounced on your wedding day, taken from the Rite of Marriage; words found on the lips of married couples in the Bible; words of poetry and drama; words of advice from priests, Popes and even saints!

I take Thee … At the centre of every marriage are these words: ‘I take Thee’. What do they mean? In the Latin Rite of Marriage, the expression used for ‘I take’ is ‘accipio’. The Latin verb ‘accipere’ means much more than ‘to take’, it means: ‘to receive’, ‘to welcome’. When a man and a woman get married, one does not ‘take’ the other, but ‘receives’ another. The ‘DNA’ of marriage is a DNA of welcoming, openness and communion.

‘I take Thee’ means ‘I welcome Thee’. ‘When we hear this word,’ notes Pope Francis ‘we immediately think of something to do. But in reality welcoming is a more profound disposition: it requires not only making room for someone, but being a welcoming, available person, accustomed to giving oneself to others. As God does for us, so we do for others. Welcoming means putting things into perspective, setting right my

Page 10

way of thinking, understanding that life is not my private property and that time does not belong to me. It is a gradual parting from all that is mine: my time, my rest, my rights, my plans, my agenda. One who welcomes gives up the ‘me’ and allows ‘you’ and ‘us’ to enter his life.’ (Address to the Vincentian family on the fourth centenary of the charism, St Peter’s Square, 14th October 2017) To marry is to ‘receive’ another person as he is, as she is, into your own life. It is not about trying to change that person so to fit into your ideas or to suit you according to your expectations, but it is about loving that person, to say ‘yes’ to that person. In this sense, marriage is a real personal transformation from ‘me’ to ‘you’ and ‘us’. In marriage one ceases to be an individual and becomes a person, that is, a sincere and definite gift of oneself to another. In fact marriage proves to be ‘the most

effective antidote to unbridled individualism’. (Pope Francis, Video message to the participants of the Third International Symposium on the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Laetitia convoked by the Italian Episcopal Conference’s Office for the Pastoral Care of Families) And all of this is possible because at the centre of Christian marriage is the person of Jesus Christ, the loving gift of himself.

Our air, our ‘human environment’ is corrupted by a real form of ‘pollution’ that corrodes souls and confounds minds and hearts, producing false illusions. This pollution is not mere selfishness or the old narcissism, it is much more, it is a real form of egolatry. Addressing the Pontifical Academy for Life, Pope Francis spoke, as no one else before him, about this sickening and polluting air we breathe every day:

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Human beings seem now to find themselves at a special juncture in their history, in unchartered territory, as they deal with questions both old and new regarding the meaning of human life, its origin and destiny. The key feature of this moment is, in a word, the rapid spread of a culture obsessively centred on the mastery of human beings - individually and as a species - over reality. Some have even spoken of an egolatry, a worship of the self, on whose altar everything is sacrificed, even the most cherished human affections. This approach is far from harmless, for it induces people to gaze constantly in the mirror, to the point of being unable to turn their eyes away from themselves and towards others and the larger world.  The spread of this approach has extremely grave effects on every affection and relationship in life. (Address to the General Assembly of the Pontifical Academy for Life, 5th October 2017) Christian marriage, the covenant between man and woman in marriage and family, not only is the antidote against this pollution but the place where the real meaning of being man and woman can be preserved. This meaning is connected with the capacity for communion of man ‘who is not just something, but someone. He is capable of self-knowledge, of self-possession and of freely giving himself and entering into communion with other persons’. (Catechism of the Catholic Church 357, cf Pope Francis, Laudato Si’ 65) This ‘capacity’ is part of the grace of the Sacrament of Marriage, capacity to make space for another and welcome this person in my life.

‘We are called to be holy by living our lives with love’

At the annual Mass in thanksgiving for the Sacrament of Matrimony at Westminster Cathedral on 19th May 2018, Cardinal Vincent told couples present that ‘this holiness to which the Lord calls you will grow through small gestures’. At the beginning of his homily the Cardinal invited the couples to think about the advice they would give Harry and Meghan, or any other newly-married couple, on the day of their wedding. He spoke about Pope Francis’ call to everyday holiness, detailing how the Pope ‘likes to contemplate the holiness present in the patience of God’s people’ and how everyday holiness is ‘found in…those who, living in our midst, remind us of God’s presence’. Cardinal Vincent emphasised that this patience and holiness should be the foundation of our relationships with others.

Mazur/Catholicnews.org.uk

To finish, he again referred to Harry and Meghan, saying the advice that the couples there today would give them would be very similar to what God wishes for them in their marriages: the gift of everyday love and holiness. He invited the couples to pray for God to ‘renew within them that initial dedication’ and be joyful that ‘these promises of marriage endure and give shape to our lives’. During the Mass the couples renewed their marriage promises and were blessed by the Cardinal. The Mass for Matrimony has been an annual event since 2008. This year it was attended by 640 couples celebrating milestone anniversaries, over half of whom were celebrating 40-plus years of marriage. Over 70 children were also present to witness their parents renewing their marriage vows.

Fr Ivano Millico is Assistant Priest at Holy Trinity Brook Green. This article is an extract from his CTS booklet ‘7 Words on Marriage’ and is printed with kind permission from CTS. Follow us on Twitter at: twitter.com/RCWestminster

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Page 11


Westminster Record | June 2018

A Loving Heart by Deacon Adrian Cullen, Evangelisation Coordinator It is the loving heart of Jesus Christ that calls us to follow him to be his disciples. The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, which this year is on Friday 8th June, is a reminder of Jesus’ humanity, and how he cares for us with all the emotions, joys and sorrows that we too experience in our lives. He wants us to follow him and lead others who don’t yet know him, or have forgotten him, to experience his tender love and the love of our heavenly Father. When Jesus calls us to follow him, we can be sure that he is not beyond our reach; indeed he reaches out to us with a warm embrace. For some people in our world, whether far away or close by, that loving expression of being surrounded by caring arms has perhaps been long forgotten, or was never there. Loneliness is a particular problem in our modern society, with over 1.2 million chronically lonely older people in the UK (Age UK, 2016). But it’s not just the elderly who feel alone: the report ‘It Starts with Hello’ (Action for Children, 2017) found that young children, adolescents including college students, and parents with young children, can also experience frequent or sustained periods of loneliness. As followers of Christ, indeed brothers and sisters of Jesus through baptism, we are to bring his loving embrace to those we meet. The spirit of Pentecost urges us to open our hearts to those in need and, through our practical social action, share the love of Jesus, and lead others to know Jesus more fully in whose Sacred Heart they will find the fullest expression of love. Across the parishes in the Diocese of Westminster, willing volunteers are helping to bring lonely people together. Caritas Westminster, alongside the organisation Contact the Elderly, regularly hosts tea parties for the elderly and isolated. The group provides older isolated people with friendship and company. For more information on this and other projects see the Caritas website www.caritaswestminster.org.uk Page 12

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Evangelisation is not just a word that describes a process by which we help others to come to know about Christ. It is also that deep sense of relationship, that loving, caring friendship which brings Jesus into our lives and the lives of others in a very human way, and through which we enter into his divine life. Through our words and actions we are to proclaim constantly that, in the words of Pope Francis: ‘Jesus Christ loves you; he gave his life to save you; and now he is living at your side every day to enlighten, strengthen and free you.’ Mazur/Catholicnews.org.uk

Inside the Hospice: Oil and Water by Fr Peter-Michael Scott

After 27 years of priesthood, I have come to realise that nowhere is perfect, not even the hospice. Often enough stresses and strains occur between staff, and as chaplain I sometimes find myself being privileged to hear someone’s sadness or anger. None of this is new. Amongst the Apostles, there must have been quarrels and disagreements. An obvious example is Luke 9.46, where the disciples argue as to which of them is the greatest. Perhaps there was a natural affinity between the fishermen, or those of certain ages and experience of life which excluded others in the group. Christ’s teaching about observing the plank in one’s eye before noticing the splinter in the other’s (Matthew 7.5) may have been helpful. Perhaps, when sending them out in pairs (Mark 6.7), he mixed them up a little to help them understand each other. Ultimately Jesus gave them confidence to accept their differences, to be more humble and work together. It is often in opening oneself up to try and understand someone else, that a sense of peace or agreement can be made. This is not easy. In the hospice there are policies and procedures which protect staff

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but are also designed to encourage mediation and resolution. In my seminary days, our excellent spiritual director use to remind us that God’s creation sometimes gives clues as to how to live with others. He reminded us that oil and water can never mix, but rest side by side, almost with silent respect, and that is what we must do. Pope Francis, in his beautiful exhortation on holiness states ‘if we regard the faults and limitations of others with tenderness and meekness, without an air of superiority, we can actually help them and stop wasting our energy on useless complaining. Saint Thérèse of Lisieux tells us that “perfect charity consists in putting up with others’ mistakes and not being scandalised by their faults”’; a lovely way of echoing that we respect oil if we are water, or we respect water if we are oil. Pope Francis also writes ‘in the Gospel of Luke we do not hear the words “Be perfect”, but rather “Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.”’ Just as I thought, no institution is totally perfect, but we can strive to be merciful. Please pray for the patients, staff, volunteers and sisters of St Joseph’s Hospice.

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Holy Father’s Universal Intention

by Fr David Stewart SJ Pope Francis is renowned for breaking new ground, in so many ways. He encourages all of us to ‘go to the frontiers’. He goes there too; in his preaching and teaching, in his travelling, remarkable for an octogenarian, but also in the topics that he raises. He wants the light of the Gospel to shine on so many varied areas of human experience. He reminds us that it must. This month’s Universal Intention is a great example: he invites the whole people of God, indeed all people of good will, to pray with him that ‘social networks may work towards that inclusiveness which respects others for their differences’. The careful wording of this month’s Intention is subtly telling. Put plainly, it’s a reminder that social networks currently are neither working towards inclusiveness nor respecting others for their differences! It’s not the networks’ fault, but those of us who use them; or, often enough, misuse them. Since the internet came into general use under two decades ago, followed by the rapid spread of interactive social media, the so-called Web 2.0, even more recently, dismay has grown about how quickly it began to be misused. There were high hopes for a communication revolution that would lead to more dialogue. That was a wonderful ideal but, sadly, we have come to see the opposite happen all too often. Many of us have used the easy connectivity of the internet, and the widespread availability of a variety of social media platforms, to do harm to others, attacking those who think differently from us or who simply are different. Online, you can be anonymous. You can pretend to be someone else; you can create an entirely fake persona for

yourself. You can hide behind this to degrade or attack others. More sadly, you can spend your entire online time in the digital company of like-minded people, in your own ‘silo’, potentially never hearing a different viewpoint or having your own opinions challenged or tested. And when that happens, our opinions solidify and turn into prejudices; we will have become online bigots. A prejudiced bigot is someone who refuses to respect others for their differences: exactly the opposite of what we pray for with the Pope this month! The internet was meant to bring freedom of communication and dialogue. ‘This is for everyone’, its inventor, Tim Berners-Lee, famously pronounced. A recent alarming example of misuse of that freedom followed the horrifying gun massacre in a US school in February this year. The students, still only teenagers, who had seen their classmates and friends massacred by the gunman, decided that enough was enough and began to campaign to tighten gun laws. Their articulate actions continue to win widespread praise and admiration, yet they suffered online attacks, casting doubts on their authenticity and honesty. These young people had just been shot at by a deranged gunman yet here were they under vicious attack again, online, for daring to speak out. The Pope’s Prayer Intention invites us to an examination of conscience with respect to its topic each month. It prompts us to ask about where this month’s concern might connect with something in our own experience and asks us how we might respond. As we make our Daily Offering, we unite it to that intention and, this month, that will lead us to reflect on our personal use of social networks.

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Do we use them to build up others, for dialogue, for the greater common good? Or do we succumb to temptation to be exclusive, interacting only with like-minded others, refusing to respect difference and diversity? Our God-given human freedom is delicate and tender. We can prayerfully commit ourselves to its protection, especially online, this month. We, in the Prayer Network, have been reviving the valuable old Apostleship of Prayer custom, of many years’ standing, of offering three challenges for the month. These are concrete ways in which we can take our Morning Offering prayer and the Pope’s Monthly Intention and put them into action, for the challenges that face humanity and the mission of the Church. Here are three Challenges for you, from this month’s Intention: • Observe how people interact on social networks, what arguments and discussions are most popular and what concerns they reveal. Do you find inclusiveness and respect for difference?

Examination of conscience: for your own or your group’s reflection: Be still, and ask the Holy Spirit to bring you to an interior place of prayer. Ask yourself if you’ve used the Internet as a means of encounter with Jesus or of announcing him to others. Do you always work towards inclusiveness, respecting others for their difference? Ask in your prayer to experience that encounter and to know that joy. Recognise the grace of repentance if you’ve not used it well. Then ponder the role that the joy of the heart of Christ has played in your Christian life. Is it visible to others? Morning Offering, or Daily Prayer for this month: God our Father, You have given your children the ability and creativity to make this world a place of communion. Today it is easy to be united with people from so different places and cultures. Help us to take advantage of

the possibilities of human ingenuity to build a world more in solidarity, closer to each other’s struggles, a world capable of accepting differences and where justice, peace and truth reign. Give us your Spirit, so that each of us may do our own small part in promoting the good use of social media. Our Father … Hail, Mary … Glory Be … Most Sacred Heart of Jesus – Have mercy on us. Contact the Pope’s Prayer Network, UK Office, at St Ignatius, 27 High Road, Stamford Hill N15 6ND for prayer-cards, ‘Living Prayer 2018’ booklets or any enquiries. Phone 020 8442 5232 or 074 3259 1117, office staffed Mondays and Tuesdays most weeks; leave voicemail for our attention. E-mail:prayernetwork@ jesuit.org.uk.

• Seek, in our own use of them, always, a positive and constructive attitude in social networks, sharing content that promotes solidarity and respect, truth and good reflection, actively resisting any temptation to degrade anyone else, especially if they disagree with me. • Take time to discover good projects of evangelisation in social networks and also try to bring the voice of the Church and its proposals to these spaces. We might also keep in mind that June is traditionally the month of the Heart of Christ. In many places the faithful will pray the Novena to the Sacred Heart, in our churches or at home in their own prayer-time. It would be wonderful if we could unite the Pope’s Intention for the month to our contemplation of the Heart of Christ, for those challenges that face us all are on the heart of the Trinity, too!

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Page 13


Westminster Record | June 2018

Youth Director’s Spotlight

Andrezj Wdowiak Director of Youth Ministry On one of my visits to a parish I discussed with the Parish Priest the fact that many young people after their Confirmation not only stop being involved in the Church but stop going to church altogether. He said that this is a gift of the Holy Spirit which seems to have the opposite outcome to the intended one. I must say that this stayed with me ever since that visit to that parish and I have been particularly pondering it in the context of Easter and Pentecost. When reading the Acts of the Apostles (2.1-11) describing the moment of receiving the Holy Spirit there is one part referring to a ‘large crowd … confused because each one heard them speaking in his own language’. I know it was not the disciples in this instance who were confused, but perhaps it is possible to be confused even after receiving the Holy Spirit and I think that this is the case for many young people. It is confusing enough to be entering into an adult life let alone getting involved in the life of the Church. God trusts us and has no backup plan. The good that we do, only we can do. Maybe we need more of a link, more parishioners helping those young people to connect to the Holy Spirit by connecting themselves and getting more involved. Young people do want to be involved and want to belong but they need the opportunities to do so. This may not be initially anything

obvious and may not be anything to do with prayer or faith sharing. Perhaps this may be simply the case of getting together and knowing that it is the same Spirit that brings us together. So what overcomes confusion? It is an especially relevant question given the torrent of information that young people consume. Openness to the gifts of the Holy Spirit and consistency are key but definitely not the only answers. The effect of overcoming this confusion though can be quite astonishing because it is once clarity settles that we let ourselves be guided by the Holy Spirit and we want to go out and speak about it to others. It is pretty much what Jesus asked us to do when he said ‘as my Father sent me, so I send you … he breathed on them and said to them: Receive the Holy Spirit’ (John 20.21-22). In the last edition of the Westminster Record our Diocesan Youth Chaplain wrote about the move of the Centre for the Youth Ministry from Somers Town Parish to Waxwell Lane in Pinner. I feel that it is important to say that although there are many earthly reasons for the move, perhaps the most important reason is the mission of evangelisation and of being sent out to share our faith and make it relevant again in the lives of others. The CYM team shares their office space with SPEC, and they are more and more involved in going out and supporting parishes in their work with young people. If your parish is pondering how to involve young people in the parish journey of faith please get in touch with the CYM Team and they will be happy to assist. In the meantime, be open to the gifts of the Holy Spirit, go out and share them with others.

The next World Youth Day takes place in Panama, January 2019. The diocesan Youth Ministry team will be taking a group of young adults to Panama, from ages 18-35. Bursaries of up to 50% of the cost are available. Spaces are limited. Interested youth are requested to contact Youth Ministry at youth@rcdow.org.uk, as soon as possible. Page 14

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Youth Chaplain’s Corner

Fr Mark Walker Youth Chaplain This past May, the month of Mary, we celebrated for the first time the memorial feast of Our Lady, Mother of the Church. Although it’s been an option to have a votive Mass celebrating this particular aspect of Our Blessed Mother for a good while, Pope Francis decided to make this celebration an annual feast in our universal calendar. The feast reminds us of how our understanding of Mary and

the Church are inextricably linked, a point affirmed by the Second Vatican Council in her dogmatic constitution on the Church, Lumen gentium, when she placed her teaching on Mary within the context of her teaching on the Church. If we want to see the true nature of the Church in her totality, we look to the person of Mary. As Pope St John Paul II put it in Mulieris dignitatem, ‘it is precisely the “woman”, Mary of Nazareth, who is the “figure” of the Church. She “precedes” everyone on the path to holiness; in her person ‘the Church has already reached that perfection whereby she exists without spot or wrinkle (Eph 5.27)’. As we build up to the next synod of bishops meeting in October, which will reflect on the theme of ‘Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment’, the idea of young people being ‘called’ to some form of service in the life

of the Church is at the forefront of our minds. Following on from our Lent meetings, Cardinal Vincent kindly agreed to host some further meetings with young adults to look at vocation in relation to prayer, discernment and how vocation manifests itself in the life of the Church. The meetings are a lovely opportunity for young adults to come together in a familial atmosphere, pray together, have some input from their bishops and reflect. Ultimately, if we want to find God’s call in life and our place in the Church, we can do no better than to turn to Our Lady, Mother of the Church, emulating her in her holiness, faith and discipleship of Christ. May she help our young people find their calling and know the love of Christ in their lives, which she mediates to us so perfectly. Our Lady, Mother of the Church, pray for us.

Youth Synod: Meet the Cardinal

by St Mary’s University Chaplaincy The first of three meetings with young people and the Cardinal on Vocation ahead of the Synod on Youth took place on Tuesday 15th May at Archbishop’s House. About 50 young people from across the diocese gathered with Cardinal Vincent, Bishop Nicholas Hudson, Fr Mark Walker and the Youth Ministry team to pray and reflect together. Twelve of us came as a group from the Chaplaincy at St Mary’s University, Twickenham. We arrived a bit early, and one of our favourite moments from the evening was Cardinal Vincent bringing around a plate of iced buns and offering them to those who were there. The evening began properly with a time of prayer and reflection on the call of Samuel. Bishop Nicholas gave some input on ’Vocation and Prayer’, especially on the idea that our life is a mission. He gave us some suggestions on things that might help us to pray, including words from the Psalms, Blessed John Henry Newman and Pope Francis. He suggested in our prayer that we could ask God what it is that he wants us to do, and to be generous in our response.

We had some time for discussion, and then to ask the Cardinal and Bishop Nicholas questions. In our group, we really liked some of the words that Bishop Nicholas suggested, especially around scripture unlocking our hearts. We also talked a lot about generosity, and how we can be generous in

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our lives. One of our favourite answers to questions was that Cardinal Vincent advised us all to pray in the ways and places that suit us best. It was really good to see so many people gathered to reflect on Vocation and Prayer and some of us hope to attend the next evening at the end of May.

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Westminster Record | June 2018

by Ollie Delargy

On Tuesday 24th April, Canon Stuart Wilson led the seekers group to a meeting at the Tyburn Convent near Marble Arch for an evening of prayer and discussion on the English Martyrs and their connection to Catholic priesthood today. The seekers group is an initiative run by the Vocations Office for men who are seriously considering whether God may be calling them to apply to train for the priesthood in the Diocese of Westminster. There are currently over a dozen men who attend the monthly meetings. They come from a wide variety of backgrounds and professions, yet they share the sense that God is asking something of them, and feel called to discern with the Church whether they are being called to take a further step by joining one of our national seminaries. With that in mind, the seekers gathered in the chapel of the Tyburn Convent for an extended time of Eucharistic Adoration before going downstairs to the Martyrs’ Chapel for some reflection from Sr Thomasina of the Tyburn community, as well as from Canon Stuart. Sr Thomasina welcomed us warmly and immediately reminded us that we were standing on the blood of the martyrs. From there, she introduced us to the story of Tyburn, the mission of the Sisters who pray continually on the holy site, and how they regarded us who had come along. Tyburn became a key site during the long years of the English Reformation. The ‘Tyburn Tree’, as it was known, was erected as an instrument of execution for all who were deemed to be traitors of the English Crown during the 16th

and 17th centuries. Following Henry VIII’s break with Rome in 1534, many who remained faithful to the Mass and the Successor of St Peter went to their deaths at Tyburn by the brutal method of hanging, drawing and quartering. A large number of English Catholics who met this fate from 1535 to 1681 were men who had fled to the Continent to be trained as priests and subsequently returned to England to administer the sacraments to their people. Both Sr Thomasina and Canon Stuart emphasised in their addresses that the Catholic Church in England today is built on the tradition of the martyrs. What was particularly striking in Sr Thomasina’s words was her associating of the seekers with the martyrs. She reminded us that the word ‘martyr’ translates as ‘witness’, and thus as part of the group we were already witnessing to the power of offering our lives out of love for Christ and his Church. The directness of her words, towards men who may in time be called to act in persona Christi, was very moving and was received as an exhortation to deep and sincere discernment, given the dignity of the priestly vocation. Similarly, Canon Stuart told us that the tradition of martyr priesthood is central to the selfunderstanding of the seminarians and priests of the diocese. Following the example of Jesus, the martyrs embraced their fate in their inner joy that they were doing the will of God. As their descendants, discerners, seminarians and priests alike in London today are called to remember this rich heritage and mission in ministering to God’s people in this city.

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At the end of her address, Sr Thomasina invited the seekers to venerate the altar of the Martyrs’ Chapel, which contained relics of Saints Edmund Campion and Robert Southwell. She explained that the tradition of priests venerating the altar goes back to the first century in the catacombs, where Masses would be celebrated above the graves of the Apostles. For us seekers, it was an extraordinary privilege to visit and pray at this holy site. Sr Thomasina left us with a final thought that it is the mission of the Tyburn Sisters to pray especially for priests and seminarians as the ‘heart’ of the Mystical Body of Christ, with the lay faithful and clergy called to act as Christ’s hands and feet in the world today. As we continue to discern how the Lord is calling us to live out our baptism, we would kindly ask for your prayers too.

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Double Augustinian Ordination by Fr Paul Graham OSA

On 5th May 2018, in the newly refurbished Church of St Augustine's, Hammersmith, Bishop Michael Campbell OSA, Emeritus Bishop of Lancaster, ordained to the priesthood Arthur Bolivar OSA and Gladson Dabre OSA, in a two-hour ceremony that was characterised by outstanding music and a powerful sense of congregational participation. They were the first Augustinians to be ordained in Britain since 2005. The following day, Fr Arthur said his first Mass in the chapel of Charing Cross Hospital, where he had worked as a nurse and where he first felt a calling to the priesthood with the Augustinians nearby. The little chapel was packed with former colleagues and friends, many of them fellow Filipinos. The first Mass for Fr Gladson was 12.15pm Sunday Mass at St Augustine’s Church, and among the concelebrants were his three uncles who had

travelled from India to be present. After visiting their families in the Philippines and India, who had been unable to obtain visas for the ordination, they will both return to their respective communities in Birmingham and London to begin their pastoral work as priests. Fr Arthur will be working in St Mary's Parish, Harborne; and Fr Gladson will continue his work as Vocations Director for the Augustinians in Britain. Beginning in September, he will be overseeing a vocation discernment community for men in Hammersmith.

Bishop Michael Campbell OSA with newly-ordained Fr Arthur Bolivar OSA (L) and Fr Gladson Dabre OSA (R)

Diaconate Ordination of Joseph Raju Katthula CMF On the 18th May, Bishop John Wilson ordained Joseph Raju Katthula CMF, a Claretian Missionary, to the diaconate in a joyful ceremony at the Church of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Hayes. Addressing his homily to the deacon-elect, Bishop John said, ‘from today forwards you are always to have the tongue and heart of a servant, wherever you are sent and whatever assignment you are given. Evermore faithfully, you will shape your way of life according to the example of the Lord Jesus, your servant King, your servant Lord, your servant Shepherd, your servant Friend.’ Reflecting on the celebration afterwards, Bishop John said: ‘This ordination was a first for both Deacon Joseph and me: him being ordained and me ordaining. I found it very humbling and extremely moving. During the presentation of the gifts in the Mass I had a strong sense of this being the Lord’s work, the

© Bianco Photography

If you seek, you will find: Discerning at the Gallows

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continuation of the Church’s ministry through the Sacrament of Ordination and the laying on of hands. ‘The Deacon is ordained to proclaim the Gospel and to serve with charity. It was a great joy to ordain Deacon Joseph at a beautiful liturgy supported by the Claretian family and the people of the Parish of the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Hayes.’ Expressing his joy at his ordination, Deacon Joseph explained that he ‘was blessed to have the chance to proclaim the Word of God at one of the parish Masses the following day, and to baptize and welcome three babies into Mother Church’. Dearcon Joseph will continue to minister at Hayes Parish.

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Slaves on our doorstep On Tuesday 1st May Caritas Westminster, supported by the Santa Marta Group, the Shiva Foundation and Hertfordshire Police, hosted an information evening on modern slavery and human trafficking at Our Lady Immaculate and St Andrew parish in Hitchin, which was attended by over 100 people. Speakers from each group gave moving and informative presentations on modern day slavery. Particularly interesting was the presentation from DS Duncan Montague, who is the Rod de Silva explains: ‘After anti-trafficking lead for the area. six years, it was time to replace He enumerated some of the our existing four physical signs that an individual might be servers that were hosting held in slavery. Among these is a virtual machines but were lack of English-language skills taking up considerable physical and having others speaking on the individual’s behalf, an space. We saw this as an individual who does not know opportunity to review the their home or work address, technology to see what new limited contact with family or solutions were available to meet friends, having money deducted our needs. Our technology from their salary for food and supports over 200 parishes and accommodation, living in fear of a number of departments and being handed over to authorities, agencies, which have grown as living and working at the same more activity and support are location, and limited access to bathroom facilities. offered to parishes and new The Santa Marta Group initiatives are launched across explained how law enforcement the diocese. authorities and the Church are ‘The new solution had to be working together against this flexible enough to meet these crime, while the Shiva requirements, while at the same Foundation looked at what time allowing us to act businesses can and are doing to responsibly with respect to our help on a global scale. Karen financial resources. Working Anstiss of Caritas Bakhita House with our long-term supplier, we spoke about the journey of recovery for rescued victims of identified a solution that is slavery. robust, flexible and cost In addition to raising efficient. The new system that awareness in the community, the was introduced enabled us to event was part of a wider project reduce a number of physical to explore how the parishes in servers we needed and combine Hertfordshire, with support them with virtual storage that from Caritas, Operation Topic does not require physical space. and the Santa Marta Group, It’s easy to use and requires might work closely with police minimum management. to offer assistance when groups of trafficked people are ‘At the same time, it discovered in the community. provides better stability, more Such help might include resilience and flexibility to add providing a reception centre, capacity as it is required. It also emergency food packages, offers full back up which allows clothing and hygiene packs, us to protect our network and pastoral support, and specialist data more efficiently. We can’t care from professionals such as budget for unknown growth solicitors, GPs and other and capacity. It’s reassuring to healthcare professionals. know that the solution we put To report suspected cases of in place will be able to meet our modern slavery, contact the police on 101 or 999 or call the future requirements.’ The work was recognised in modern slavery helpline on industry publication Intelligent 08000 121700. For more information on this CIO Europe which featured as initiative, visit their cover article a report on www.modernslaveryhelpline.org the implementation of the new or http://www.gla.gov.uk/whoWestminster Diocesan we-are/modern-slavery or infrastructure in their March contact Elizabeth Wills on edition. elizabethwills@rcdow.org.uk .

Upgrading the digital diocese If you turn on your computer, you can’t avoid reading about computers. Today, technology dominates the news and almost every aspect of our lives, and all sorts of organisations, from banks and telecoms providers to social media sites, have to expend considerable resources on their Information Technology systems to make sure they are robust and secure. Charities too are required to ensure that their IT systems are fit for purpose, although they often have fewer resources to devote to the latest technology. In the Diocese of Westminster, our small ICT (Information and Communications Technology) team, consisting of ICT Manager Rod de Silva and Systems Administrator Daniel Prasanna, in partnership with external experts, has the task of ensuring that the technology that supports parishes and the departments and agencies in central services is safe, efficient, and cost-effective. For many years now, the team has been working resolutely to protect our infrastructure from malicious attacks. A key defence here is filtering malicious emails which might damage our systems and individual computers. On an average day between 5,000 and 10,000 such emails are intercepted before they can release malicious software that could harm the entire network. Our computer system must also be capable of managing the demands of the modern diocese. During the past year, the ICT team been busy upgrading ageing servers that the diocese relies on for the operation of our network and storage of files. Page 16

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Westminster Record | June 2018

Pilgrimage of hope across Europe

by Barbara Kentish

On Easter Monday at 6am, 22 Catholics left Tottenham for a pilgrimage of hope for Europe. Led by Westminster Justice and Peace, we set out to rediscover what unites, rather than divides, the UK and our European neighbours. To this end, we made nine visits in 10 days, visiting five countries, six cities and the Taizé community in rural France. We covered 2,500 road miles, not including the two-hour train trip from Assisi to Rome. We can honestly claim to have ‘walked the talk’ in search of unity. While uncertainty over the UK’s future role in Europe continues, faith itself must have propelled us, in only four months, to organise, sign up to and undertake the trip. We were saddened on day 1 by seeing the miles of UK-funded high fencing around the port and station of Calais. Here our friend Br Johannes Maertens of Maria Skobstova House, which offers hospitality to around 15 to 20 migrants, had arranged, together with Véronique, a Secours Catholique volunteer, to welcome us at their day centre. Visiting the European Parliament in Brussels was a bitter-sweet experience. In all probability, of course, the UK will opt out of this institution, which, our guide reminded us, is built on a web of treaties and agreements hammered out with discussion and compromise over 50 years. Our visit to the Council of

Europe in Strasbourg, as the defender of the European Convention on Human Rights, reminded us that defence of human rights is a huge part of the post-war ethos of Europe. It was Br Paolo, of the Taizé community, our next step of the pilgrimage, who made us reflect more closely in our prayers to remain hopeful in the face of so much division in our current politics. We needed to be reminded that whatever our politics, Europe is so much more than a set of economic agreements. PostSecond World War Europe was first and foremost a peace project, and this was in fact what we were searching for in our pilgrimage: the green signs of reconciliation, typified by Pax Christi, by the European Convention on Human Rights, by the Italian Sant'Egidio community, by the Taizé Community, founded as a community of French and German Christians and many others. To hope means to be free, Br Paolo explained. We must be free to follow our conscience in our politics, without expecting things to go our way. Simply to want events to go our way is not Christian hope. The Taizé campus, so pretty and spacious in a sunny spring countryside in southern Burgundy, buzzed with 3,000 young people celebrating Easter, and we queued behind them to enter the vast church for lunch and evening prayer. We had a much-needed rest, and savoured our pilgrimage.

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Our next stop, Assisi, focused on Pope Francis and Saint Francis. The wonderful warm spring weather, the views from Assisi over Umbrian plains and the Giotto frescoes energised us all. Some visited the shrine to St Clare at San Damiano. No grand success for Francis and Clare, yet they had hope. It was in the Franciscan spirit of poverty that some students began to pray together in the 1960s, in the Trastevere church of Sant’Egidio in Rome, a two-hour train ride from Assisi. Today, there are 40,000 members of the Sant’Egidio community around the world. Communities pray every evening together, reach out to the poor, and make peace. Members decide themselves how much time, energy or money they can give, just as Zacchaeus decided how much to return to those he had defrauded. Our welcomer, Francesco, encouraged us, despite the wet, cold day, as he explained that the actions undertaken by the community were dictated by being the right thing to do, and not whether they were apparently achievable. Nothing was impossible to God, so difficulties would be faced in a spirit of trust and peace. This seemed to be an echo of Br Paolo’s words. We left Rome on the evening train, damp but very uplifted. Our pilgrimage brought us, in just 10 days, into contact with several bright beacons of hope around Europe. There are surely many more to be discovered.

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Celebrating the work of volunteers by Verity Sykes

Every year the first week of June is Volunteers’ Week, and a chance to thank them and celebrate the difference that volunteering makes to the community. The diocese has over 750 social action projects running in parishes, many of which couldn’t run without the help of volunteers. These projects range from foodbanks to befriending groups and night shelters, all of which confer a huge benefit on those who use their services. A report from the National Council of Voluntary Organisations found that 60% of people volunteer at least once a month, with 16-25 year olds being the age group most likely to volunteer. In 2016 volunteering was worth £22.6 billion to the UK economy. In a time of funding cuts to many services, the need for volunteers is critical. Pope Francis calls us to ‘take care of your most vulnerable brothers and sisters, and work for peace’ and Catholic social teaching compels us to put our faith into action to help others, and build communities. At

Caritas Westminster we work with parishes to help them develop social action projects that benefit the local community, but we rely on people volunteering to keep the projects running once they are established. Volunteering has many benefits: as well as making a difference to people in need, it can help individuals make new friends and feel more embedded in their community, acquire new skills and even boost well-being! Thank you to all the wonderful volunteers across the diocese who give up their time and energy to help in the work of the Church. If you’d like to use your gifts and talents to help others, take a look at the Caritas Volunteer Service: www.caritaswestminster.org.uk /volunteer to find a range of volunteering roles aimed at the Catholic community. Or join Caritas Westminster for a Volunteer Fair on Tuesday 5th June. More information at www.caritaswestminster.org.uk /events

CAFOD Volunteer clocks up 2000 hours Richard Hester, a parishioner from Our Lady of Mount Carmel and St George, Enfield has been presented with an award to mark the five years of charity volunteering. Richard, who began volunteering for CAFOD in 2012, has now clocked up over 2,000 hours at the diocesan volunteer centre. Currently he is working on the Live Simply initiative and encouraging parishes to join CAFOD’s Trash for Cash scheme, which encourages people to recycle old items instead of throwing them away, and donate proceeds to charity. He also helps with office admin and to prepare volunteer events throughout the year. ‘I enjoy working with and supporting other volunteers in

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an office-based environment,’ said Richard. ‘CAFOD supports those less fortunate in the world and helps them to help themselves and I fully support that ethos.’ ‘Climate change is a challenge for us all and I would like my son and young family members to mature in a safe environment, where we balance our needs with the Earth’s resources.’

Visit: cafod.org.uk/volunteer Page 17


Westminster Record | June 2018

Saint of the Month: St Romuald St Romuald was born at Ravenna, Italy in 951 AD. Born to an aristocratic family, Romuald grew up with riches and was known to have a wild youth. Devotion to prayer or the call to holy Life was never taught or spoken of within the family setting. Unusually enough, Romuald felt a constant inner calling to the eremitical life all through his growing years, the feeling only intensifying is his teens. Real conversion happened when he witnessed his father, Sergius degli Onesti, kill a relative in a feud over property. Romuald could not take the sight of this ghastly crime and fled, taking refuge for 40 days at the monastery of St Apollinaris near Ravenna in penance for his father. The stay wasn’t welcomed by the monks due to the extreme asceticism and piety practiced by Romuald. He left Ravenna and travelled to Venice to become a disciple of the hermit Marinus, who taught Romuald to recite the Psalter every day. Marinus was a holy man and it was from him that Romuald was taught about Christ and the Word of God. Encouraged in his monastic vocation by seeing their hermit life, Peter Urseolus, Duke of Venice, joined Marinus and Romuald. After staying a few years with Marinus, Peter went on to join a French Benedictine monastery, Romuald followed him and lived in a hermitage nearby for five years. Years later, Sergius came in search of his son who by now was famous for serving the Church and helping in the formation of hermit orders and monasteries across Italy. On seeing Romuald’s monastic life, Sergius had a conversion of heart and wished to become a monk himself. He failed many times in his attempts, but with Romuald’s support Sergius was eventually successful. While travelling across Italy, Romuald made Pereum his favourite resting place. In 1005, he went to Val-di-Castro and lived there for two years prophesizing that he would return one day to die there, Page 18

alone and unaided. By the year 1012, he had helped setup and reform almost 100 distinct hermitages and monasteries. In the same year, a piece of land called ‘Camaldoli’ in the Diocese of Arezzo was gifted to Romuald by a man named Maldolus, who had had a vision of a ladder extending from this very plot of land to the skies, on it were several monks dressed in white, ascending into heaven. This became the site of five hermit quarters which then grew to become a monastery that became the famous Motherhouse of the Camaldolese Order. On hearing of the vision, the monks’ habits were changed from black to white. Setting up the Order wasn’t an easy task as Romuald faced severe attacks from the devil for five constant years prior to 1012 which he overcame with constant prayer. St Romuald is famous for the ‘Brief Rule’ a thorough masterpiece, handed down by Saint Bruno of Querfurt. It speaks of sitting silent and watching one’s thoughts while meditating on the Psalms, repeatedly reading a Psalm when one fails to comprehend its meaning or singing it out in one’s heart. In the Rule, St Romuald also speaks of how we ought to sit in God’s presence and empty ourselves out before him. For a man who received no formal source of theological education, writing this brief rule was marvelous indeed. Stories of his devotion to finding God in solitude extend to the time when he went into a solitary state in the woods for seven consecutive years. Interestingly, he battled temptations of the flesh in his younger life and used to go hunting to the woods where began this love for solitude, a perfect example of God transforming human weakness into strength for his greater glory. In 1013, Romuald retired to Monte-Sitria, continuing his life of solitude. In 1021 he moved to Bifolco. Five years later he returned to Val-diCastro and as prophesized

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Summer Liturgy Programme at Ealing Abbey

In Memoriam: June 1 Fr Philip Carpenter (1992) Bishop Victor Guazzelli (2004) 2 Fr Stephen Finnegan (1993) Fr Damien McManus (1997)

The following are offered as part of the summer Liturgy Programme at Ealing Abbey, validated by KU Leuven: 2nd-13th July: Liturgical Research Seminar: Rev Dr Daniel McCarthy OSB Liturgy: History & Context: Rev Dr Ephrem Carr OSB & Gregory Carey OSB Theology of the Liturgy: Prof Joris Geldhof

4 Fr Joseph Rees (2007) Fr William McConalogue (2009) 7 Fr John O’Connell (1970) 8 Fr Harold Hamil (2016) 9 Mgr David Norris (2010) 10 Fr John Harrington (2007) 11 Fr Vincent McCarthy (1974) Fr Francis Davis (2003) 13 Canon Alfonso de Zulueta (1980) 14 Fr George Lee (1987) 16 Fr Michael Pinot de Moira (2013)

died there, alone in his cell on 19th June 1027, which is now celebrated as his feast day. Many miracles took place at his tomb over which an altar was erected in 1032. In 1432 his body was exhumed and miraculously found incorrupt. In a world full of materialistic clamour, the words of St Romuald, ‘Better to pray one Psalm on devotion and compunction than a hundred with distraction’ draws us one step closer to holiness like him.

Fr Patrick Sammon RIP Fr Patrick Sammon was born on 19th April 1945 in County Clare, Ireland. He was ordained to priesthood by Cardinal Basil Hume on 13th May 1978 at Westminster Cathedral. Fr Patrick started his priestly ministry as Assistant Priest at St Anthony of Padua, Edgware in 1978 before moving to Our Lady of Lourdes, Acton in 1982. He was appointed Parish Priest at St John Fisher, Perivale in 1984. After a brief sabbatical in 1996, he was posted to Holy Trinity and St Augustine of Canterbury, Baldock in 1997. He went on to serve as Parish Priest, Edgware in 2000 before taking semi-retirement in 2011 and moving to Nazareth House, Hammersmith. He died on 15th May 2018, aged 73. May he rest in peace.

16th-27th July: Pastoral Liturgy: Rev Dr James Leachman OSB Western Liturgical Books: Rev Dr Daniel McCarthy OSB Liturgies of the Early Church: Rev Dr Ephrem Carr OSB

17 Cardinal Basil Hume OSB

6th-17th August: Research Seminar: Christian Initiation Proficient Latin for Liturgists (and Canonists)

26 Fr John Moran (1988)

(1999) 18 Fr Michael Connor (2007) 19 Cardinal Herbert Vaughan (1903) 20 Fr Thomas Kiernan (2013) 21 Fr J Brian Campbell (1983) 22 Fr Anthony Turbett (2000) Mgr Canon Roderick More O’Ferrall (1991) 27 Fr Raleigh Addington (1980) 28 Fr Cuthbert Boddy (1970) Canon Denis Crowley (1980)

To register, contact 020 8862 2156, email il@liturgyinstitute.org

29 Fr Richard Fitzgibbon (2006) 30 Fr Edmund R J Henry (1971) Fr William Anderson (1972) Fr Christopher Bedford

All are welcome

(2008)

Summer Accommodation in Lodnon: Allen Hall Seminary offer comfortable rooms surrounded by beautiful gardens and chapel in central London in the month of July and August. Rooms from £50 per night (including breakfast). For details, email: allenhall@rcdow.org.uk or tel: 020 7349 5600 (option 0).

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Events & Calendar

REGULAR EVENTS

Westminster Record | June 2018

Liturgical Calendar - June

If you have an event, please email: communications@rcdow.org.uk

Prayer Groups SUNDAYS

Taizé at St James, Piccadilly W1J 9LL every third Sunday 5pm. Call 020 7503 5128 for details. Tyburn Benedictines Monastic afternoon Every first Sunday 2-5pm Martyrs’ Crypt, Tyburn Convent, 8 Hyde Park Place W2 2LJ. Westminster Cathedral Young Adults meet socially after the 7pm Mass on Sundays and then at the nearby Windsor Castle pub. For further details please contact: westminsteryoungadults@gmail.com

MONDAYS

Mothers’ Prayers at St Dominic’s Priory, Haverstock Hill NW5 4LB Mondays 2.30-3.30pm in the Lourdes Chapel. All are welcome.

TUESDAYS

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament Tuesdays 6-9pm concluding with Benediction at Newman House, 111 Gower Street WC1E 6AR. Details 020 7387 6370.

Prayers for London at the Shrine of Our Lady of Willesden Tuesdays 7.30pm. Organised by the Guild of Our Lady of Willesden, Nicoll Road NW10 9AX. Our Lady of Walsingham Prayer Group First Tuesday of the month 2.30pm to 4.15pm in the Chapel of St George and the English Martyrs in Westminster Cathedral. Details: antonia@walsingham.org.uk

Vocations Prayer Group Second Tuesday of the month 8pm at 47C Gaisford Street NW5 2EB. Taizé at St James’, Spanish Place W1V 3QY every first Tuesday of the month at 7pm. Email: penny28hb@aol.com or just come along.

WEDNESDAYS

Corpus Christi Contemplative Prayer Group for Young Adults Wednesdays from 7pm at Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane WC2E 7NB. Contact corpuschristipg@yahoogroups. co.uk Our Lady, Untier of Knots, Prayer Group of Intercession every third Wednesday at St Anselm & St Cecilia, Lincoln’s Inn Fields WC2A 3JA. Mass at 6pm followed by Prayer Group. Rosary, Adoration, silent prayer and Divine Mercy Chaplet. Email Antonia antonia4161@gmail.com.

THURSDAYS

Sodality of the Blessed Sacrament first Thursday of the month, Mass 6:30pm at Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane WC2E 7NB followed by Adoration and Benediction. www.sodality.co.uk

Jesus Christ the Fullness of Life (JCFL) provides a space for Christians of different traditions to join together in prayer and friendship. For further details please visit www.jcfl.org.uk. NFG Prayer Group weekly at 8pm for praise & worship followed by a social. Held in St Mark’s Room, Christ the King Church, Cockfosters N14 4HE. Contact Fr Christophe: christophe.brunet@cheminneuf.org. Soul Food A Catholic charismatic prayer group for young adults Thursdays 7-9pm at St Charles Borromeo, Ogle Street W1W 6HS. Details www.soulfoodgroup.org. St John Paul II Prayer Group Every second Thursday of the month 7-8pm, Mass, Adoration and prayer at Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane WC2E 7NB

FRIDAYS

Divine Mercy Prayers and Mass Every first Friday 2.30-4.30pm at Our Lady, Mother of the Church, 2 Windsor Road W5 5PD Westminster Cathedral Charismatic Prayer Group every Friday 7.30pm Prayer, Praise and Teaching. First Friday is a healing Mass. For details, call 020 8748 2632. Queen of Peace Prayer Group at Our Lady of Lourdes, Acton W3 8AA. After 7pm Mass, Exposition, a homily, Holy Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy. Friday prayer meeting 1:30pm to 3pm with Adoration in St Matthew's Hall, Northwood, Middx HA6 1DW except 1st Friday. Summer break- August. Contact Patricia 07918128248

SATURDAYS

Friday abstinence

1 Fri

St Justin, Martyr

2 Sat

Easter Feria or Ss Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs

3 Sun

+ MOST HOLY BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRST (Corpus Christi)

4 Mon

feria, Ninth Week of Year 2

5 Tue

St Boniface, Bishop and Martyr

6 Wed

feria or St Norbert, Bishop

7 Thu

feria

8 Fri

THE MOST SACRED HEART OF JESUS

9 Sat

The Immaculate Heart of Mary

10 Sun

+10th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

11 Mon

St Barnabas, Apostle

12 Tue

feria, Tenth Week of Year 2

13 Wed

St Anthony of Padua, Priest & Doctor

14 Thu

feria

15 Fri

feria

16 Sat

feria of St Richard of Chichester, Bishop

17 Sun

+11th SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

18 Mon

feria, Eleventh Week of Year 2

19 Tue

feria, or St Romuald, Abbott

20 Wed

St Alban, Protomartyr

21 Thu

St Aloysius Gonzaga, Religious

22 Fri

Ss JOHN FISHER, Bishop, AND THOMAS MORE, Martyrs

23 Sat

feria, or St Etheldreda, Virgin

24 Sun

+THE NATIVITY OF ST JOHN THE BAPTIST

25 Mon

feria, Twelfth Week of Year 2

26 Tue

feria

27 Wed

St John Southworth, Priest & Martyr

28 Thu

St Irenaeus, Bishop & Martyr

29 Fri

+Ss PETER AND PAUL, Apostles

30 Sat

feria or The First Martyrs of the Holy Roman Church

Young Adults Mass with an Ignatian twist

Contact: yam@mountstreet.info or visit www.pathwaystogood.org No Friday abstinence

Friday abstinence

Friday abstinence

Mass at Canary Wharf Held Tuesdays at 12.30pm at 2 Churchill Place E14 5RB. Organised by Mgr Vladimir Felzmann, Chaplain to Canary Wharf Communities. Details at www.cwcc.org.uk.

St Alban’s Abbey Fridays at 12 noon. Mass in the Lady Chapel of St Albans Abbey AL1 1BY. Members of the Westminster LGBT Catholic Community are specially welcomed on 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month for Mass at the Immaculate Conception Church, Farm Street at 5.30pm, and invited to the parish hall afterwards for tea/coffee, where there is anopportunity to learn of pastoral help available. EXTRAORDINARY FORM MASSES

Sundays: Low Mass 9.30am, St James Spanish Place W1U 3QY. Low Mass 9am, The Oratory, Brompton Road SW7 2RP. Low Mass 5pm, St Bartholomew, St Albans AL1 2PE.

No Friday abstinence

Low Mass 5.30pm, Shrine of Our Lady of Willesden, NW10 9AX.

Mondays: Low Mass 8am The Oratory, Brompton Road SW7 2RP Mass 6.30pm Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane WC2E 7NB. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays: Low Mass, 8am The Oratory, Brompton Road SW7 2RP. Fridays:

Low Mass 8am The Oratory, Brompton Road SW7 2RP. Low Mass 6pm St Etheldreda, Ely Place EC1N 6RY. First Friday only. Low Mass 6pm St John the Baptist Church, King Edward's Road E9 7SF. First Friday only. Low Mass 6.30pm Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane WC2E 7NB. Second Friday only. Saturdays: Low Mass 12.15pm, St Wilfrid’s Chapel, The Oratory, Brompton Road SW7 2RP.

Pope’s Prayer Intention for June: Social Networks That social networks may work towards that inclusiveness which respects other for their differences. Follow us on Twitter at: twitter.com/RCWestminster

Deaf Community Mass First Sunday of the month 4.30pm at Westminster Cathedral Hall, Ambrosden Avenue

Every Sunday at 7pm. Church of the Immaculate Conception, Farm Street

Taizé at Notre Dame de France 5 Leicester Place WC2H 7BX at 7.15pm. Call 020 7437 9363. Love heals Body, Mind & Spirit One-day retreat on last Saturday of every month (except December) at Church of Our Lady of the Assumption & St Gregory, Warwick Street W1B SLZ. Contact Eileen 0208 542 2476. Carmelite Spirituality Group meet first Saturday at St Joseph’s Church, Bunhill Row EC1Y 8LE. 11.30-15.30 for prayer and reflection. Enquiries: Sylvia Lucas 07889436165

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Other regular Masses

Low Mass 4pm, Lady Chapel, Westminster Cathedral SW1P 1QW. Second Saturday only.

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Page 19


Westminster Record | June 2018

Diocese without Frontiers: On the right side of Montego Bay Diocese

Fr Howard James meets Pope Francis

In the first of a series of articles by Westminster priests who live and work outside the diocese, Fr Howard James shares his experience of ministering in two Jamaican parishes. The year was 1997. My time at the Catholic Missionary Society was drawing to a close, and I took the bold step of asking Cardinal Hume if I could go to Jamaica for a year. He agreed, which surprised me considering he had said he wanted me ‘nearby’. This began my ‘Apostolic’ travels in the Caribbean. I spent two years in Jamaica. I returned to London but after three years I was asked in 2003 to become the Administrator for the Cathedral in St John’s Basseterre, Antigua. After three and half years as Administrator, I returned to Westminster. Seven years later, in 2013 it was agreed that I return to Jamaica, to one of the ‘original’ parishes where I had been in 1998-2000. I left my parish of St John the Evangelist, Islington in July 2013 and returned to Jamaica where I am presently assigned, in the Diocese of Montego Bay where I care for two churches: Our Lady of Fatima, Ocho Rios, and St Ann and St Anthony’s Moneague, a small mission church. Montego Bay is one of three Catholic dioceses in Jamaica. There is some irony here as Jamaica is less than 5% Catholic with a population of 2.8 million. Trinidad, with a population of approximately 2 million, where over 30% are Catholic, has one Archdiocese. Our diocese has a local Bishop: Burchell McPerson and four Jamaican priests, two Ugandans who have been incardinated, two Filipinos, two Page 20

Poles, a Pakistani, a Fijian, a Tanzanian, and an American. We are a very mixed bunch but we get on very well. Our Lady of Fatima was built nearly 42 years ago by the Jesuit Fathers to cater to the needs of local people and the visitors to the tourist resort of Ocho Rios. My work is very hands-on in both places where Catholicism, though respected, is seen by some people as the ‘magic/rich’ church, so we have people coming for Holy Water or to ask to have their houses blessed. They are not Catholics but they believe that the magic and power of the Catholic priest will drive the evil and spirits away. I do a lot of visiting the sick and housebound. I celebrate Mass four times a week in ‘Fatima’ and three times a month in St Anthony’s. I organise retreats, Bible study, work and guide two new Parish Councils. Even though I try very hard to help my people to be self-reliant, sometimes things do not get done unless Father says it or does it. I am finally succeeding in moving our parishes away from that type of behaviour. I started an education fund, in 1998, to help our children to attend school. A friend took a picture of the church and made it into postcards. He suggested that we sell these to the many visitors who come to the church and use the proceeds to help the children. I am pleased to say that that programme has continued and is still in operation. Many children have benefitted from this fund. My family has set up a foundation to help children at our alma mater. Every year we help between five and six young people. We raise the money in the UK and we have been doing this for nearly 20 years. I visit the school two or three times a year. I meet with the Head and Guidance Counselling staff and twice with the children. I meet once with the children and their parents. It is demanding but very fruitful. In the time that we have been doing this one young person has become a doctor, and many teachers and other professionals. God is good.

Published by The Diocese of Westminster, Archbishop’s House, Ambrosden Avenue, London SW1P 1QJ. Printed by Trinity Mirror, Hollinwood Avenue, Chadderton, Oldham OL9 8EP. All rights reserved.

We have been working hard with our young people and I am pleased with the work done by our youth leaders and catechists. They have basically come from nowhere to read at Mass, serve Mass, and organise and sell items to help with their ministry. We have an outreach programme to help people pay for prescriptions for medicines, food for their families, money for transportation, and other essentials. Most of the parishioners don’t live very close to the church and so visiting, either the sick or for social reasons, can take a long while as it involves long journeys. The church is built overlooking the sea and is very pretty. Many people, local and overseas visitors, come here to get married. In some cases I meet the couple the day before the wedding. The ability to work with different people and to be able to be flexible is a great help. My office overlooks the sea and when people visit they usually comment on the beauty of the place and they ask how I ever get any work done. Well, my desk looks away from the sea, so I don’t really ‘see’ the sea.

The demands on the priest are great and I thank God for the experience and opportunities that I have had to serve him. The Diocese of Westminster seems a world away. Parish work has so many similarities and yet some many differences. The most important aspect of my life, in both places, is to guide and help people in their relationship with God and how that is lived day by day. I offer an invitation to anyone who would like to visit. I have a spare bedroom and you are welcome. Please remember me, and my people, in your prayers.

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Westminster Record - June 2018  
Westminster Record - June 2018