Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

Masses tomorrow, for the Feast formerly known as the Circumcision are at Broughton Hall at 11.30a.m. and at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley at 3.00p.m.

Mass at Broughton on Friday at 9.30a.m. BUT NOT AT BATLEY. Apologies for the short notice.

It is now 12 minutes to midnight. The academic /work year began in September, the Church year began on the First Sunday of Advent and now it's nearly 2009.

Let us continue to pray for peace, a sound appointment in Westminster, continued health of our Holy Father Pope Benedict and increased positive interest and participation in the 1962 Rite of Mass and Sacraments.

With every good wish to all of you who take the time to check out this blog and appreciate its content and intention.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Back to normal

I heard a delightful quote recently on Radio 4. A fellow announced that his new year's resolution was to live each day henceforth as if it were his last, his pal was quick to point out that this would be a lot like his present existence where he already spent most of the time in bed slipping in and out of consciousness.
I have had that sort of Christmas and I feel fully refreshed, just about. I have a lot to squeeze in over the next few days, but it is mainly things I enjoy doing anyway.
Back to normal.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Gloria in excelsis Deo

Christmas greetings to everyone. It was lovely to hear the Gloria sung at our Mass at Batley, the First Mass of Christmas, a Missa cantata. Nearly 90 parishioners and members turned out for the Mass which was sung by Fr. Wiley. The Epistle and Gospel were chanted in English, as provided for in Summorum Pontificum. It detracts not one iota from the solemnity of the Mass.

Thank you to everybody for your cards and gifts. I shall get round to writing this year's cards before the Epiphany! Seriously, I have never been so behind. God bless us all at this time of the year and give us more time to get ready next year!

Mass on Friday at Broughton at 9.30a.m.
Mass on Saturday at Broughton at 9.30a.m., at Holy Spirit, Heckmondwike at 11.30a.m., at St. Mary's, Batley (Vigil) at 3.00p.m. and at St. Marie's, Halifax, (Vigil) at 6.00p.m.

On Sunday Mass will be offered at Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardigan Road, Leeds at 3.00p.m. and at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Rd., Castleford also at 3.00p.m.

Mass on Monday and Wednesday at Broughton at 9.30a.m.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Fr Abberton at full force

Today at Mass at Castleford, Father Abberton gave an absolutely astonishing and beautiful sermon on our Blessed Lady, the Arc of the Covenant and the link with the unborn John the Baptist, who began his vocation by leaping in his mother's womb when Our Lady carrying Jesus in her womb visited St. Elizabeth. Mary carried in her virginal womb the Word of God, the Priesthood , and the Blessed Eucharist.

The richness and sumptuousness of Fr. Abberton's sermon made it more enjoyable than the finest Christmas pudding I could ever wish to eat.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


When we got to St. Marie's in Halifax tonight the Blessed Sacrament was exposed and there was a lot of activity near the confessional. Fr. Lister and Fr. Smith and possibly other clergy had heard hundreds of confessions during the day between them. A good crowd at Mass and the opportunity to go to confession as well as receiving Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, made it a personally very special start to the drama and joy and sorrow and glory of the Christmas Season, when I can drop the purple background to this blogsite and brighten it up. The colours have to be a bit insipid so that the text is legible.

Today on Radio 4 I listened to a very interesting account of the story of the Magi by Ian Hislop; having been only 10 feet away from the reliquary of the Magi in Cologne Cathedral just a week ago, and as a former citizen of Cologne, I was fascinated to hear Ian describing a special inspection he was allowed to make of the huge reliquary. He saw three skulls.
The reliquary is believed to be the finest example of the talents of medieval goldsmiths in existence.
My class could not believe how precious and fine it was, in the same way they couldn't fathom how the three gift bearers could all be together again.
But their example of offering gifts at Christmastide has become embodied in the Christmas tradition. The gifts they offered were deeply symbolic, as a foretaste of what was to come for their Divine recipient. These men were gentiles, how special then, that sacrifice and offering from non-Jews was one of the first recorded acts associated with the birth of Christ.

I now have time to see if I can download an i-podcast of Ian Hislop's programme!

Please pray for an old Priest friend to the Latin Mass Society, who before retiring never refused to let his church be used for celebrations of the Old Mass - moreso when attitudes were far less positive to those with those rightful aspirations referred to by Pope John Paul II. Father's only ever request, which was to complete the traditional 40 hours devotion celebrations with Low Mass was, in my opinion, shamefully refused by Bishop Konstant.
Father has been in hospital, but as far as I can understand is now at home, but I've been unable to speak to him. Father wouldn't thank me for mentioning his name. So I won't.

Holidays at last

A hectic and quite troubling week is over. The internal workings and decisions of the Committee got onto some of the blogs this week following a leak to the journalist Damian Thompson. I have been inundated with calls about this and it has been really interesting to hear so many ideas and opinions about the direction the Society should now take in these post Summorum Pontificum days.

I have also spoken to Walter Atkinson, our former long time MC who is very well but quite frail these days. He is looking forward the the next Mass at Our Lady of Lourdes, Leeds on the last Sunday of the month.

I have also recieved calls and letters from people saying that they had been too ill to get to the Masses at Bradford and Castleford last Sunday. Attendance at St. Peter's was dismal with only a quarter of the congregation of the time before when we had our sung Requiem.

One person who was at St. Peter's was an excellent new blogger JT of the my heart was restless blogsite I am delighted to be able to permanently link her blog from this blogsite. This was her first Mass in the 1962 Rite and it had a deep effect on her, which she recounts on her blog. Please take a look.

Mass tomorrow at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford at 3.00p.m. for the Fourth Sunday in Advent.
Mass on Monday at Broughton at 9.30a.m.
Mass on Wednesday at Broughton at 9.30a.m.
and First Mass of Christmas at St. Mary of the Angels, Cross Bank Road, Batley at 3.00p.m.
Mass on Friday at Broughton at 9.30a.m.

For those in the western extremeties there will be a traditional Midnight Mass at St. Osmund's, Long Lane, Bolton, preceded by carols from 11.15p.m.

On New Year's day there will be Mass in the morning at Broughton, at 11.30a.m. and in the afternoon at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley at 3.00p.m.

Isn't God good to us?!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

After gale force 9 at sea

Back home.

Tired. Still bunged up with an unshakable cold but delighted that our pupils' behaviour was excellent on the recent trip to Cologne.

Had things gone to plan I ought to have gone over to Stydd Chapel, Ribchester for Mass this afternoon. After force 9 gales for six hours over the North Sea last night (which does not bother me in the least) but with 8 hours of consoling any number of over 30 worried 11 year olds, wiping up vomit and avoiding the T word (which on an aeroplane is the B word, where B=bomb and T= Titanic) and 2hrs waiting to disembark left me with 20 minutes to drive over 60 miles.
I was there in spirit.

Mass at Halifax tonight saw familiar and welcome faces from Middlesbrough diocese with a decent spread of parishioners and members who turned out for the first Gaudete Sunday Mass.

Fr. Smith, in his sermon, eloquently likened the end of the world to the end of our own personal world - i.e. at the moment of our death. The message that the act of rejoicing should be active and not simply passive acceptance was a common thread through Fr. Smith's sermon.

St. Marie's Halifax, is one of the increasing number of parishes in this Diocese where the Extraordinary Form of Mass, according to the Liturgical books of 1962 is a regular part of parish life. This parish is vibrant. As well as the 1962 Mass, Mass is offered in the OF in English, Polish and Italian with confessions in Spanish at call.

Mass tomorrow at ST.PETER'S, LEEDS ROAD, LAISTERDYKE, BRADFORD AT 3.00p.m. This will be a Missa cantata. This is one of our latest regular venues with a Mass every second Sunday at 3.00p.m.

Low Mass will be offered at the same time of 3.00p.m. at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Rd., Castleford .

Thinking about the meaning of storm when at sea, Saints Peter and Paul , the Papacy and the Blessed English Martyrs spring instantly to mind.

Pax vobis .

God bless Pope Benedict XVI.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Good news from Rome...less so from Bradford

This week has been very unpleasant so far. I have spent two days in bed suffering the effects of the the latest bug to be doing the rounds. Tomorrow I have to take 43 children and four staff to Cologne, via Hull and Rotterdam. The idea does not fill me with joy at the moment!

However 2 very interesting pieces of news from Rome have cheered me up today.

Firstly the Pope has elected Cardinal Canizares aka "Little Ratzinger" to replace Cardinal Arinze at the Congregation for Divine Worship. As some wag commented.....tick, tick, tick.
Secondly the Holy Father has invited all the Benedictine Abbots and Abbesses of the world to join him for Mass and Prayer of the Church on Ascension Thursday, 24th. May 2009 at Montecassino.

No posts until Saturday.

Auf Wiedersehen.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

December 8th. Feast of the Immaculate Conception

Maria, conceived without stain of original sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee.

Saturday, December 6, 2008


I am the LMS rep for two dioceses. Leeds and Salford. My telephone number is no secret.
Usually those people who telephone me are totally courteous and patient when it is not me, but one of any of our five children or their grandparents, aunties, uncles or even friends who pick up the telephone. In the last few days and weeks members of my family have been subjected to rudeness and being hung up upon.
This seems to have mainly been because those answering the 'phone didn't know if I knew this or that or who was speaking or who was celebrant at such and such a Mass, but far worse because the person in question was asked to leave their name und contact details.

This is for me a cross. I am happy to carry this cross for myself.

My family is something else.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Priest Training Conference

Plans are well under way for the Priest Training Conference to be held at Ushaw Seminary in Low Week 2009 and already several priests have registered to attend. I received a call from a Priest in the South of England this evening requesting further information.
Such a conference would have been unthinkable just a few years ago, as would have been the two Oxford Conferences held over the last two summers.
A glance at blogs like the New Liturgical Movement, Rorate Caeli and the LMS website paint a very positive picture, locally, nationally and internationally.
The genie is out of the bottle.

God bless Pope Benedict XVI!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

First Friday Masses

Mass at Broughton on Friday at 9.30a.m. with confessions at call.
In the evening Mass at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley at 7.30p.m. Preceded by confessions.