...the theme of Fr Alexander Sherbrook's sermon today at St Patrick's, Soho, on the feast of the Mexican martyrs. Inevitably, thoughts and, later, conversations, turned to the topic of being a Christian today in Britain and the legal and social pressures that are bearing down on us as the full implications government's insistence on a wholesale redefinition of marriage become clear. Our freedom to teach about true marriage is by no means clear under the plans, and it is already assumed that this right should be denied to us. We have been given no assurances about the rights of priests and teachers and catechists to teach what we know to be true.
I was at St Patrick's to lead the young students of the School of Evangelisation on the final History Walk of their term. They graduate in June - they have been taking part in a course of study through the Maryvale Institute - and their days have also been filled with a number of other projects including of course the street-evangelisation for which St P's has become famous. Our History Walk took us to the nearby (Anglican) church of St Giles-in-the-Fields. The big Blessed Sacrament procession which St P's holds each June always finished here at St G's, with Benediction in the churchyard, after which the kind parishioners of St G's serve wine and snacks...a delightful ecumenical gesture which sends out a message of goodwill and friendship to all.
We also took a Tube journey to the Tower of London, looked at Traitors' Gate etc, and finished with prayers at the site of St Thomas More's martyrdom. We also walked soberly round the great memorial to the men of the Merchant Navy who are commemorated in the great garden nearby, men who have no graves on the earth because they died at sea...
Home, to an evening of study centred on Lumen Gentium and Bl John Paul's writings on Mary: academic essay to be completed by the end of June.