Thursday, March 17, 2011

The Old Friary...

...near Westminster Cathedral - actually originally built as a school/orphanage for the children of soldiers of the Crimean War - is now owned by a director of the Catholic Herald newspaper, and a press conference was held there to mark the launch of Persecuted and Forgotten?, an important new report produced by Aid to the Church in Need. The report highlights the problems faced by Christians in various parts of the world. At the press conference, Archbishop Nichols spoke extremely well, quoting the Holy Father on the subject of religious freedom as a fundamental right. Archbishop Bashar Warda of Iraq was the special guest speaker and spoke movingly about the plight of Christians in his country.

Mass in Westminster Cathedral - large numbers because it was St Patrick's Day. Glorious music. On the way in, we met Fr Keith Newton, of the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. He didn't mention it, but he and the other two former Anglican bishops have just been made Monsignors.

While trawling the news, I came across the significant message delivered by the Holy Father to mark the celebration of 150 years of modern Italy. The clear message that it gives about the role of the Church gives clear definition to the approach of the Church following the Second Vatican Council and is a forward-looking and good way ahead.

Another topic of major interest: the new Missal. The Catholic Truth Society has been working on this project for months and the news is very good indeed: the new translation of the Mass is, of course, in good English with clarity and beauty, and it's clear we can expect the various Missals to be beautiful too, both those for use on the altar and those for the faitful are to be of fine quality, and worthy of their purpose.

1 comment:

Nancy C. Waters said...

Dear Joanna: On St. Patrick's Day, I attended the Mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral that traditionally precedes the largest parade up 5th Ave. in NYC: the 250th St. Patrick's Day Parade. I was honored to receive the Eucharist from Archbishop Timothy Dolan. Mary Higgins Clark, the writer of thrillers, was the Grand Marshall and was in attendance. She is a devout Catholic with immense wealth...a wealth she never stops sharing, often anonymously, with the Roman Catholic Church's organizations as well as with individuals. She never forgets that she came from poverty in the borough of the Bronx. Her memoir, Kitchen Privileges, written well before memoir was in vogue, is as authentic a read as she is a person. WHAT A FANTASTIC CHOICE! I once had the privilege of introducing Mary; she never forgets...and made time for a few words with me in the Cathedral yesterday despite all the hoop-la.
Last Tuesday, at the annual luncheon of the Ladies of Charity in NYC, Rev. Matthew Ernest addressed us about the upcoming vernacular changes in the Roman missal (effective in the USA on the First Sunday of Advent, 11/27/11). His audience of women, who were primarily in their 70s and 80s, was a reluctant one. It's a shame that they don't remember, and no one thinks to point out, that many of the changes are familiar; that is, before Vatican II, when we had missals with the Latin on the left and English on the right, they seem to be changing back to that English. For example, "And also with you" is returning back to "And with your spirit" which is what we said then. In America, this is no easy sell. And to think he was preaching to the converted!
Nancy C. Waters, Bronxville, NY