Saturday, August 27, 2016

...and all next week...

...with a team of volunteers, I will be packing and posting prizes won by young people in the 2016 Schools Bible Project..   This is an ecumenical initiative, and the Project attracts entries from schools across Britain. The number of entries this year is larger than ever, posing quite a problem for our volunteers...but, as last year, we have been given the use of a large room in the parish centre of the local (excellent) Catholic parish, plus storage space for the book prizes etc, and we will work steadily every day until the work is done.

The main winners each year go to the Huse of Lords to receive their prizes (books, plus cash awards for their schools) from one of our Trustees, Baroness Cox. This is always a special and memorable day, and it is a great joy to meet the young people and their families and teachers.

in October...

...Auntie will be in the USA, to speak at a conference at Aquinas College, Nashville, Tennesee.

The latest issue...

...of the Westminster Cathedral magazine OREMUS has a feature about the Blessed Sacrament procession through London  held each Autumn to mark the anniversary of the visit of beloved Pope Benedict XVI to Briatin. The Procession links London's two cathedrals - Westminster, and St George's Cathedral in Southwark.  This year's Procession is on

SATURDAY OCTOBER 22nd, 

Mark the date in your diaryt now!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

In the local park...

...gathering plump blackberries from the hedge that separates it from the large local cemetery, I was accompanied by raucous shouts and cries from a series of football matches: lots of local teams, girls as well as boys, with massive enthusiastic support from the sidelines...

As things drew to a close, the young people all lined up and there were further shouts and cheers - I think cups and medals were being handed out - and then, across the park, hoarse but enthusiastic voices were raised in the National Anthem:

"...Send her victorious
Happy and glorious
Long to reign over us
God save the Queen..."

It was somehow rather moving to hear that, coming across the park on the warm afternoon air.

THE FULL RANGE...

...of the new series of Catholic History Walks is now listed on the website. Do take a look...and come join us!

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Mozart...

...at the Proms...following a lovely invitation from  a Mozart enthusiast. "There's Missa in C..."

An afternoon of blackberry-picking.   Jars of jam all sitting nicely on the shelves in the kitchen...
And yesterday I completed some academic work and will submit it on Monday...the summer's work.

A quick change, and then on to a short meeting about the TOWARDS ADVENT Festival: Sat Nov 26th, Westminster Cathedral Hall...put the diate in the diary now!

A sense of  summer reachings its golden final days, Autumn faintly approaching.

The Royal Albert Hall, stunning, filled with awed silence as the concert begins...

Glorious.

Pizza and long talk about Mozart and  more...

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

...and a report from Walsingham...

...read here...

London in summer heat...

...and meetings to organise variuoius Autumn events...plans for the next set of Catholic History Walks...

Put this one in the diary now: Wed September 14th, 6.30pm, meet on the steps of St Martin-in-the-Fields. All welcome...

News that...

...some Lutherans have announced that they no longer have any deep issues dividing them from the Catholic Church....which is good news, though I think perhaps they have some things that remain to be pondered, as their spokesman is a lady bishop...

There is also news that the Lefebvrists may be on their way back: this has seemed likely for some time, and my husband visited their HQ a few months back, and talked to the top people, and definitely got the impression they'd be back in the Church fairly soon.  As they have split, and some of the most extreme have definitely left the group, it seems likely that something will be  be worked out...

Today's Gospel is all about the labourers who were brought in later...and those who had been there all day, labouring in the heat, were wrong and mean-spirited when they complained...the message is clear...

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

You can now read...

...the July/August FAITH magazine here...Auntie's editorial,  features on a range of subjects,  book reviews...

Monday, August 15, 2016

MASS at...

...St Patrick's, Soho. Crowded. A fine choir and lovely music.

The Pure in Heart prayer group  had invited me to lead  them in a Catholic History Walk: word had spread and there was a large crowd.  Things started with a lively talkative lunch at a pizza restaurant - lots of tables pulled together, much enjoyable conversation - and then we set off along the Charing Cross Road, meeting further group members at St Martin-in-the-Fields, and heading along the Strand and then down to the river...

We pondered the history of St Giles and the poor sufferers from leprosy who lived there over the years....we looked across at what is now Trafalgar Square and saw it as fields belonging to the monks of Westminster...we walked along the Strand and imagined the river lapping at its edges before the big Embankment was built....and we linked all of this to the great events of the rolling centuries and to monarchs and controvesie and achievements and battles, and more....this was a really enjoyable afternoon, and things lingered agreeably over drinks as the walk finished at Waterloo Bridge and we sauntered across to the South Bank...

More on Catholic History Walks here...

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Invited to speak...

....to a meeting of the Ecumenical Society of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Chichester.

A kind friend gave me a lift. Sussex was enchanting as we drove down from London...cricket on village greens, pubs, the wonderful satisfyingly unchanging  Downs. The spire of Chichester Cathedral soars up. Childhood memories of families holidays stir.

The Bishop's Place at Chichester lives up to its name: it's very grand. It was a great priviledge to address the ESBVM in the ancient chapel, and I was conscious of the centuries of history, and all the different voices that have echoed in those walls.. Topic was Marian theology and insights fromSt John Paul . It's all hugely relevant as there is much to explore ...the whole mystery of God's plan from "the beginning" (Gen 1) with the "Woman" who will crush the serpent's head...and all of this is bound up with the spousal imagery that runs through the whole of the Old Testament and the New...God and Israel, Christ and Church, Bridegroom and Bride...

 Before the lecture, I made a statement about Bishop George Bell, a great and good man whose work I have long admired. Incidentally there is more about him here...

On the way back we stopped to visit the grave of Cardinal Manning's wife...I always mention her in my History Walks around London (also:did you know that an office block near Westminster Cathedral carries a plaque noting that Cardinal Manning lived there?)...and then there was supper in a country pub...