Thursday, July 30, 2015

Off to the EVANGELIUM conference...

...this weekend,  It is held annually at The Oratory School, near Reading. I am speaking on St John paul the Great and the Theology of the Body.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015


...and a cheery welcome in Glasgow from the Sisters of the Gospel of Life,  doing wonderful work  and at the heart of a great team of young people, including seminarians.  These young men will be off to the Scots College in Rome later this year: a sign of hope for the Church of tomorrow.

 Lively talk over mugs of tea surrounded by stacks and stacks of all sorts of donated goods, clothes, babyware and more, given by Glaswegians  who have long  made the Sisters' work their own.

Main reason for the whole trip, however, was a meeting of the Editorial Board of FAITH will see the results of our efforts when the next edition of the magazine comes out in Sept.

Fabulous, fabulous drive through the Borders, glorious hills, everything fresh and green, a joy after hot sticky London.

This morning, prayer with the Sisters in the chapel of their house in Glsagow, and then Mass in the beautiful  Cathedral, a grand start to the day.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015


...and our duties, rights and obligations. And fear, and so on. Read here.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Tennis shoes... immaculate condition, soles barely marred, thick white laces neatly strung through the eyelets. Waiting at the back of the cupboard as I rummaged for suitable footwear for the John Paul II Walk to Walsingham.  I tried them on, walked about the house. They were too flat, no rise at all in the heel. Still, perhaps the right thing to do would be to wear them today and walk about a bit in them?   Found a comfortable pair of socks, the ones airlines give you on overnight flights. As I left the house I just knew I was one of those little-old-ladies-in-tennis-shoes who attend Catholic events looking fervent...oh dear.

I'd taken along some other shoes, just in case. It didn't take me long to remove the tennis shoes and place them in a useful receptacle designed for things you do not want and cannot use. Put on my comfortable brown leather shoes with good heels and felt much better. Pity about the purple sox.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

For all who have been asking me...

...about the next series of London Catholic History Walks:

MONDAY September 21st, meet 6.30pm on the steps of Westminster Cathedral (after the 5.30pm Mass). A walk on a Royal theme, taking in St James' Park.

SATURDAY OCTOBER 3rd, the "Two Cathedrals" Blessed Sacrament Procession. Starts 1.30pm WESTMINSTER CATHEDRAL,  goes through London, crossing Lambeth Bridge and finishing at St George's Cathedral, Southwark. COME AND WITNESS TO THE FAITH IN LONDON! 

Tuesday October 6th, meet 1.00pm - after the 12.30pm Mass - at St George's Cathedral, Southwark. A look around the Cathedral and the surrounding area.

Tuesday October 27th, 5.30pm - NOTE TIME -  meet at the Church of the Most Precious Blood, O'Meara Street, London Bridge, for a walk along the Thames.

Because I love rain...

...I relished our final day with the Dominican Sisters in the New Forest...everything cool and fresh with heavenly views. The chapel is beautiful: built in a medieval style, its strong wide wooden beams held firmly in place with wooden pegs instead of nails, it has full-length clear glass windows that seem to invite all the beauty of the surrounding meadows to be part of our worship too. The sisters will soon need some more choir-stalls as the community is growing steadily.  The singing is lovely. The sisters are extraordinarily busy, organising youth events, running catechetical programmes across the Poirtsmouth diocese, and active at every major Catholuc gathering for young people in Britain...but their lives centre around the call of the bell that summons them to prayer.

We were given hearty meals, had long and wonderful talks - and much laughter - with the sisters, enjoyed books, walks, the garden, prayer, and silence. It was a weekend to cherish.

If you want to meet the Sisters, one of the best ways would be to join them - and some 30 or more cheerful pilgrims - on the John Paul II Walk for the New Evangelisation, which takes place in a couple of weeks time. Info from that link I've given.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

At St Dominic's priory... the New Forest. A glorious weekend, joining the sisters for their prayers in the chapel, and also enjoying beautiful walks with New Forest ponies and bracken and splashy puddles and a golden sunset...

At the core of the weekend, a gathering of catechists to train for the "Come Follow Me" programme. An excellent scheme and the Dominican sisters are dynamic and enthusiastic, with an infectious joy.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Catholic History Walk...

WED July 22nd,, starts  6.30pm (after the 5.30pm Mass) at Westminster Cathedral.  Meet on the steps of the Cathedral...we'll be walking to the river, Parliament, and Westminster Abbey. All welcome! Come and join us...

...and a glorious ordination St George's Cathedral, Southwark. This was a massive event with over 500 people present, a joyful day, and a triumph for the John Fisher School, Purley. 

Fr James Clark sent me this report: 

A further two former students from The John Fisher school were ordained as priests in Saturday 18th July by His Grace Archbishop Peter Smith in St George's Cathedral. Over 500 people were in attendance including many other former Fisher boys and those from the Faith Movement. Mr Daniel Cooper who taught both boys read the 1st reading. This means that three Fisher old boys have been ordained as priests in Southwark this year. "Like London buses, 3 came along after a long wait (of 13 years)."

Fr Mark Higgins (left on pic)  has been appointed to St Andrews Thornton Heath, and Fr Matthew O'Gorman (right) has been appointed to St John the Baptist Purley.

Both celebrated their  first Masses in The John Fisher School chapel (10am and 12:15) on Sunday 19th July.
As a school we are very proud of all three (inc Fr James Cadman ordained on 31st May) and we ask the Lord of the Harvest to bless us with plenty more!! St John Fisher, ora pro nobis!

Fr James