Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Masses at Christmas

Masses for Christmas in Leeds and Salford Dioceses are as follows:

Christmas Eve First Mass of Christmas 3.00p.m. , St. Mary of the Angels, Cross Bank Rd. Batley.
Midnight Mass, St. Osmund's, Long Lane, Breightmet, Bolton.
Christmas Day, Low Mass,8.00a.m. English Martyrs, Alexandra Road South, Whalley Range, Manchester.

Christus natus est.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Celebrating success at the Cathedral and a prayer for life

Many thanks to the Cathedral Dean Mgr. Moger and the wonderful sisters who made us so welcome on Saturday, when about forty good souls turned out for a sung Mass of Requiem for Bishop Wheeler. The schola sounded strong and it was great to catch up with old friends.
Many thanks also to the celebrant, Fr. Timothy Wiley, diocesan co-ordinator for the TLM.
I would have reported sooner, but my internet connection is as useless as a chocolate fireguard at the moment.
I hope to sort this out soon, but will be on a school trip to Germany next week, which has been an organisational nightmare, also given that at school a quarter of the teaching staff is off sick. It has been a helter-skelter week.
Tomorrow I shall be going down to London for a Committee meeting with an agenda as long as my arm and a good thriller.

Sunday (Advent II) sees Masses at Broughton(11.30a.m.), Heckmondwike(2.30p.m.), Castleford(3.00p.m.), and also on Saturday at Halifax(6.00p.m.).

I have just received an urgent prayer request for a young woman who attended an appointment today for an abortion, but seeing the heartbeat on the scan asked time to reconsider her choice.
She is now thinking about it again. Storm heaven with prayers of thanks that a new life was not exterminated and that its temporary reprieve may eventually allow for the grace of a natural death many years from now.

Regina pacis, ora pro nobis.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Prayer requests

Of your charity please pray for a number of people I have been asked or promised to remember on this blogspot including several sick priests and vocations to the religious life.

For almost a year I have been taking a former popular traditional Catholic blogger to Masses in Halifax and on occasion to Broughton on a weekly basis. On her own blog, now defunct, she charted her (amongst many other things) process of falling in love with the Traditional Rite of Mass, which never precluded her attendance at the novus ordo Mass. JT is now in Italy at the house for the many postulants her chosen order receive each year. I hope she can now focus her previously restless heart and do beautiful things for God.

Please remember to pray for those for whom nobody prays and the suffering souls in purgatory in these closing days of November.

Mother of the sick and our refuge in grief, Pray for us.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Reminder - Mass at Leeds Cathedral

A reminder that there will be a sung Mass of Requiem at the Cathedral on Saturday 28th. November at 3.00p.m. This Mass will be for the repose of the soul of Bishop Wheeler. At my request in the past Masses have been offered for Cardinals Hinsley and Heenan, but not on this scale.

I have fielded a number of telephone calls on this subject and hope it will be a memorable occasion. There will be absolution at the catafalque following the Mass.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Missa cantata in candlelight

I hope everybody enjoyed yesterday's Feast. All three Masses I attended (sorry Fr. Abberton that yours wasn't one of them) were all joyful occasions.

This evening I acted as MC at the sung Mass at Batley. It was a moving occasion. The schola sounded excellent, the young severs managed to concentrate very well for the entirety of the Mass and absolution at the catafalque.
The sanctuary and high altar were alight with flickering red candles, in dimmed light.
The other candles providing the light in church were from the altar and around the catafalque and the flickering votives at the side altars.
I was (even as MC), able to concentrate more on the Mass itself than actually serving it.

Please remember the suffering souls in purgatory and that on Sunday there is a sung Mass of Requiem for our war dead at St. Peter's, Leeds Road, Bradford, at 3.00p.m.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Today's Mass at Bewerley

A very gloomy day weather wise was brightened by the sung Mass in Upper Nidderdale in honour of our Lady of the Rosary today. A schola of four sang the Mass and Fr. Parfitt preached eloquently on the power of the Rosary drawing comparisons from the time of the Reformation when rosary beads had to be put out of sight, rather redolent of today's attacks on wearing crosses and crucifixes at work. As Fr. Parfitt has said before, there is nothing new under the sun. I suppose what goes round comes round. We were given food for thought.
It was very nice to see Canon O'Hara the PP in attendance and four servers. One lady had come from Pocklington and a couple from south Manchester.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Christ the King

All Masses offered this weekend include the indulgenced prayer of Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus from the Ritus Servandus.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Extra All Souls Mass

Fr. Abberton will be offering Mass on All Souls at 7.30p.m. but will be unavailable on Saturday 31st. October for his regular Saturday morning Mass.
The All Souls Mass is one of a growing list in this Diocese.

God bless the Pope!

Busy weekend ahead

Masses this weekend:

Saturday 9.30a.m. Broughton Hall
Saturday 11.30a.m. Holy Spirit, Heckmondwike

Saturday 3.00p.m. St. Mary's, Batley
Saturday 6.00p.m. St. Marie's, Halifax

Sunday 3.00p.m. St. Joseph's, Castleford
Sunday 6.00p.m. Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardigan Rd. Leeds.

News of further planned Masses to follow.

Mass (sung) on Tuesday at 11.30a.m. Bewerley Grange Chapel, Pateley Bridge.

Saturday, October 17, 2009


I am writing this post on my new computer. Both my old laptop and desktop have recently died on me and internet connection has been a bit of a hit and miss business. And still is!

The good news is that I can now confirm that the Traditional Mass is again welcome in Leeds Cathedral and that a sung Mass of Requiem for the repose of the soul of Bishop Wheeler will take place at the Cathedral on Saturday 28th. November at 3.00p.m.

Clergy reading this are welcome to attend in choir dress.
Photo above is simply for illustrative purpose and has nothing to do with Leeds Diocese or Latin Masses offered there.

God bless the Pope!

Quick reminder

Mass tomorrow at 3.00p.m at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Rd. Castleford.
Mass tomorrow at 4.00p.m. at Holy Name, Oxford Rd. Manchester
Mass tomorrow at 5.00p.m. at St. Augustine's, Harehills Rd., Harehills, Leeds.
Mass tomorrow at 6.00p.m. at English Martyrs, Dalton Terrace, York.

Deo gratias.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Deo gratias!

Not instantly recognizable as one of life's biggest optimists, even I felt the feel-good factor throughout the entire inspection over the last couple of days. Having received "outstanding" twice in the last two inspections, but under the old rules, I expected to be seen this time, to see if I had adapted to the new rules. (Not something I'm normally given to! Meat....on Friday?) I was, however, not one of the chosen many.
In all honesty I felt quite cheated that they did not see the lessons I taught and moreover the learning that took place . I wasn't observed once. I have not been to bed before 3.00a.m. since Thursday night, nor have I been up after 6.50a.m. since Saturday. I am very tired. Yet, I have not really delivered anything different to what I would normally deliver. Paperwork was eventually in place and at least my limited interest in this boring part of the job was focused for the time I had and I was happy to think anybody could inspect it.

Thank you very much to those of you who offered me your prayers and more particularly to St. Anthony and St. Joseph for prayers answered.

Please pray for a friend of mine who is trying to discern a vocation to the religious life and also to a young lad who has put himself forward as a candidate for the Priesthood.

Of you charity please pray for the repose of the soul of a 16 year old girl from my school who died tragically a few days ago and for her family and friends. At her parents' request any mention of this tragedy must go with the request that we should always wear a seatbelt.
May she rest in peace.

Regular Masses on Sunday at St. Joseph's Pontefract Rd. Castleford, resume on Sunday 18th. October at 3.00pm..
ALSO: The first of our regular 3rd. Sunday Masses at St. Augustine's, Harehills Rd. Harehills, Leeds start on Sunday at 5.00p.m.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Following all that great news...

I have a copy of the above in my classroom. It inspires me.

Ofsted has given my school 24 hour notice of inspection to begin on Monday 8.40a.m. until Tuesday 4.10p.m. Totally confident of my ability to teach well, my only worry is that all the mind boggling paperwork on my desk, the sitting room floor, the dining table, my bedroom floor, the car boot and more worryingly, on my lost memory stick, will be in some sort of order before Monday. St. Anthony, pray for me. St. Joseph, inspire me!

Don't expect much by way of posting until at least Wednesday of next week!

God bless the Pope!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Regular Sunday Mass

The regular Sunday afternoon Mass at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Rd., Castleford at 3.00p.m. will resume on Sunday October 18th. This beautiful little church with very fine and devotional stained glass windows is centrally located and with ample parking.

This means that each weekend there will be at least three Sunday Masses per week.

It can only get better.

God bless the Pope!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

More good news

I had a very productive telephone conversation this evening with Mgr. Moger and subject to confirmation a sung Mass of Requiem will take place in the Cathedral in November.
This will be the first public Mass in the Extraordinary Form here since the Cathedral re-opened following extensive refurbishment.

I hope this will be the first of many.

Leeds Cathedral. Photograph by Fra Lawrence Lew OP.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Ave, ave, ave Maria

Last night at Batley many hundreds of people turned out to bear witness to the Faith and process from the Market Square to St. Mary's Church for Benediction offered by the Bishop. It is always touching to see the gleeful faces of all the little children illuminated by their candles, last year my youngest son even managed to set his hair on fire, much to the amusement of his older sisters.

Tomorrow is the feast of the Holy Rosary.
Mass at Batley at 7.00a.m. and at Broughton at 9.30a.m.
If you are in Manchester, Mass at English Martyrs, Alexandra Rd. South, Whalley Range at 7.00a.m.

After the torchlight procession I was able to chat with several clergy. All of them are regular or occasional celebrants of the EF and the others are good friends of the EF, allowing their churches to be used for the celebration of the Traditional Rite.

As a result of last night I have learned of extra Masses and finalized details of others, including Mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception to be held at Leeds University Chaplaincy, December 8th. at 7.30p.m. You may remember that this was where we had Mass for the Feast of the Annunciation in March and the Easter Triduum.

I have arranged meetings with some priests and will report future regular Masses in due course.

What is becoming very clear is that the Latin Mass Society's role in this Diocese has changed very dramatically over recent years. When I first became rep I had to request permission for each and every Mass, this was having had to negotiate a time and place and to find a priest who, quite frankly was willing to risk the ire or suspicion and even the ridicule of fellow clergy and superiors by agreeing to do it.
Under Bishop Roche no such restrictions as had previously been imposed existed and following the election of Pope Ratzinger and promulgation of his definitive Motu proprio, interest has really intensified among many priests and bishops, locally, nationally and internationally.
The greatest majority of Traditional Masses in Leeds (and Salford) are now a part of regular parish life. As I have stated before, the Extraordinary Form of Mass is not the property of the LMS, the FSSP, the Society of St. Pius X or anybody else. It belongs to the Church and the People of God.

If anything I need to carry on banging the drum that there is nothing suspect about this form of Mass and nothing dotty about participating at it. This means advertising the regular celebrations and persuading others to do the same. There is a lot to do and much to which we can look forward.

Ave Maria!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

New venue

Sunday 18th. October at 5.00p.m. sees the first of our new regular Masses at St. Augustine's, Harehills Rd., Leeds. Thereafter Mass will be offered here each third Sunday at 5.00p.m. Many thanks to Fr. Kelly, a longstanding friend of the LMS, the PP.

A reminder that the annual torchlight procession at Batley will take place on Monday (5th. October), starting in Batley Market Square at 7.30p.m. There follows a procession from the Market Place to the church where the Bishop will give Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. If the event proves to be anything like the last two years it will be a wonderful occasion and an outstanding opportunity to bear witness to our Holy Faith in public and give honour to our Heavenly Mother in this month of the Holy Rosary.

The Parish Priest, Fr. Wiley, Diocesan Co-ordinator for the EF, has told me about the incredible amount of work which goes into this event. Please support it.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


Next weekend sees the visit of the relics of St. Therese de Lisieux, our Cathedral will become a little Lisieux for the weekend, as Bishop Roche reminds us in his pastoral letter today.
Holy Spirit parishioners from Heckmodwike will be visiting the relics on Sunday and so there will be no Mass at Heckmondwike on that Sunday.
The Masses at the weekend will all be Votive Masses of St. Therese, this is because in the 1962 calendar, her feast is October 3rd. and all Sunday's Masses are to be Votive Masses of St. Therese, this will apply to both the new and old Rites of Mass.
Morning Masses at 7.00a.m. at St. Mary's Batley continue.

On Monday 5th. October there will be the annual torchlight procession at Batley culminating in Solemn Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament by the Bishop. Details later this week.


Mass at Sacred Heart, Howden, near Goole on Tuesday 29th. September at 7.30p.m. This is a first for us. Thanks to the Middlesbrough rep for organizing this Mass who lives in that area.

Mass will be offered again at Bewerley Grange Chapel on Tuesday 27th. October at 11.3oa.m.

Mass for the feast of All Souls, Monday 2nd. November at 7.30p.m. at St. Mary's, Batley.

Plans are well under way for a new wave of regular Masses and for the feast of the Immaculate Conception.

God bless the Pope.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Benedict XVI bound for Britain

I was delighted to hear on the wireless at teatime that the Holy Father, the Supreme Pontiff, Pope Benedict XVI is to make a state visit to Britain sometime next year.

This planned visit to Britain is a wonderful opportunity for the Catholic Church to re-assert some sort of positive and lasting identity and to invite the lapsed and would be converts into full communion with Rome.

Deo gratias!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Just had to post this

Ego volo celebrare Missam iuxta ritum sanctae Romanae ecclesiae, ad laudem omnipotentis Dei, totiusque ecclesiae triumphantis, ad utilitatem meam, totiusque ecclesiae militantis, pro omnibus qui se commendaverunt orationibus meis in genere et in specie, ac pro felici statu sanctae Romanae ecclesiae.

I intend to celebrate Mass according to the rite of the holy Roman Church, to the praise of the almighty God and of the whole Church triumphant, for my benefit and that of the whole Church militant, for all who have commended themselves to my prayers in general and in particular, and for the happy estate of the holy Roman Church.

Taken from Fr Zuhldorf's WDTPRS I thought I must share the sheer purity of this prayer, given the words recently directed by our Holy Father to the South American Hierarchy on their ad limina visit to Rome.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

2nd. anniversary of Summorum Pontificum

Tomorrow is the first anniversary of our first regular 2nd Sunday Mass at St. Peter's, Leeds Road, Bradford at 3.00p.m. I should like to thank Fr. Hall, the celebrant, Fr. Frank, the Parish Priest and Dorothy the sacristan for their continued help and and kindness. The Mass will be Missa cantata.

Monday is the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross and also marks the second anniversary of the coming into force of the Motu proprio which derestricted the use of the Old Rite of Mass and Sacraments and Breviary. Thanks be to God!
Mass on Monday at 7.00a.m at St. Mary's, Batley and at 9.30a.m. at Sacred Heart, Broughton.

Today I attended an English Heritage event at Bradford's Reform Synagogue, which is the only one in Northern England.

God bless the Pope!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

200th. post

This is the 200th. post since I began this blog 15 months ago.

Tonight saw the second Mass of the day in the traditional Rite at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley. The first was a votive Mass of the Sacred Heart at 7.00a.m. and the second was a sung Mass in honour of our Blessed Lady to mark Fr. Wiley's 50th. birthday. Well over 120 people attended the Mass, at which there were many excellently behaved children present. The parish ladies had laid on a delightful feast in the parish club afterwards and it was lovely to see a superfluity of nuns from the nearby convent at the Mass and the party.

Ad multos annos Fr. Wiley!

Last Friday there was a traditional sung Requiem for a member of my own family at which well over 200 were in atttendance. (Fr. Wiley was again the celebrant.) Questions after the Mass at the reception included the one I am often asked at such occasions, "Why did they have to change everything"? Not altogether sure of the answer, I can say with certainty that the Pope is now trying to to redress the balance.

Mass at Sacred Heart, Howden, near Goole at the eastern end of the diocese, on Tuesday 29th. September, will be a Missa Cantata, for the Feast of St. Michael at 7.30p.m. Fr. Smith, Episcopal Vicar for clergy and PP of St Marie's, Halifax will be celebrant.

Plans are underway for Mass in half term at Bewerley Grange, Pateley Bridge. Fr. Parfitt will offer this Mass. Details to follow.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Getting back into the swing ....

Summer holidays already seem far away, and I've only been back at school for one day!
My class and indeed my department's exam results were beyond reproach at GCSE and GCE level and although my nerves were wrought by the end of term a good long break and trips to Belgium, France, Scotland and Northern Ireland have helped to leave me feeling fully refreshed.

On Saturday I have to be in London for an LMS meeting and on Sunday there is the usual Missa Cantata at Broughton Hall at 11.30a.m. Please note, however that on Sunday there will be no Mass at Heckmondwike on Sunday, nor on Saturday 12th. September as Fr. Abberton is away.

Tomorrow at 7.00a.m. there will be Mass at St. Mary's, Batley, at 9.15a.m at Our Lady of Good Counsel, Seacroft, Leeds, at 9.30a.m. at Broughton and at 7.00p.m. again at St. Mary's Batley.

The evening Mass at Batley is a Missa cantata and marks Father Wiley's 50th. birthday.

Looking ahead there will be Mass at a new venue on the Feast of St. Michael, at Sacred Heart, Howden, near Goole. Watch this space for further details.

Finally the regular last Sunday of the month Mass at Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardigan Road, Leeds will now be at 6.00p.m. instead of 3.00p.m.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Due to unforeseen circumstances Masses at Castleford are again suspended until further notice.

I am delighted to be able announce that there is to be Low Mass, every Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday in term time at 7.00a.m. at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley.

As a result of this there will be no evening Mass on the first Friday of the month, unless otherwise announced, after the first Friday of September (4th.) when the Mass will be a Missa cantata to celebrate the 50th. birthday of Fr. Timothy Wiley, PP and Diocesan co-ordinator for the 1962 Rite of Mass and Sacraments.

Other changes are also on the cards, which I shall make known in the next couple of days.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Happy Feastday!

As I get older, the Feast of the Assumption, which is one of my absolute favourites, seems to come around faster and faster. At Mass this evening in Halifax, Fr. Smith spoke eloquently on the subject and pointed out that the absence of original sin made Her able to be assumed, body and soul, into heaven at the end of Her earthly life. I remember Fr. Charles Doughty drawing the same conclusions at a Traditional Mass he offered on August 15th. 1985. This Mass was a first for many years on that feast in England and at St. John's, Buttershaw, Bradford. I can still remember the delight of people who came from Manchester at the Mass, people with whom I still remain in touch.

Mass on Sunday will be at St Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford at 3.00p.m. Due to Priests' holidays and consequent unavailability, there has been a break in provision in Castleford for a few weeks.

There will be a special First Friday of September Mass at St. Mary of the Angels, Batley at 7.00p.m. (and not now 7.30p.m as advertised in Mass of Ages). This Mass will be a Missa Cantata to mark the 50th. birthday of celebrant Fr. Timothy Wiley who is the the Parish Priest and official Co-ordinator of the TLM in the Diocese of Leeds.

Recently Holy Mass has been offered by Fr. Parfitt at Markenfield Hall, to mark the feast of St. Henry and in June there was a solemn High Mass of Requiem for Father Charles Borromeo Holmes on the 52nd. anniversary of his ordination to the Sacred Priesthood. Father died in April.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Nearly there..

Less than two weeks left of term before we start the summer holidays when I will relish being able to stay in bed till ten o'clock.
The past few weeks have been as interesting as they have been busy if not exhausting, considering the heatwave and there is still a lot to do before the break.
In the meantime a couple of reminders and notices.

No Mass at Heckmondwike on Saturday 11th. July.
Mass at Halifax, Saturday 11th. July. 6.00p.m.
Mass at St. Peter's, Leeds Rd. Bradford, 3.00p.m.
Mass at Markenfield Hall on Wednesday 15th. July 7.00p.m. (Just south of Ripon on the main Ripon - Harrogate Road.)

It was lovely to see Fr. Lister, who celebrates his Golden Jubilee this year, offer Mass again for us at Halifax on Pentecost's fifth Sunday . It has also been great to hear the EF Mass at the Catholic Chaplaincy at the University of Bradford. This means that the Traditional Mass has been offered in the last twelve months at the University chaplaincies of Bradford, Leeds and TASC at Horsforth. High, Sung and Low, in fact!

High Mass of Requiem was offered on Monday 15th June at Halifax for the repose of the soul of Fr. Charlie Holmes who died in April (RIP). This Mass coincided with the 52nd. anniversary of Fr. Holmes' ordination to the Priesthood in Lisbon in 1957.

One little story I would wish to share about Fr. Holmes which got under Fr. David Smith's radar (he preached the panegyric) was the time when Bishop Wheeler went to St. John the Evangelist's in Bradford to administer the Sacrament of Confirmation. Fr. H was then the PP there. As the Bishop was offered the customary lemon juice and bread to cleanse his thumb at the conclusion, the good and kindly bishop turned from the ritual and was heard to remark words to the effect that he had never thought of using a Jif Lemon squeezy, let alone seen it. Charlie was very proud about it all, as he himself sometimes recalled. He heard my confession for years and was always as direct, simple and practical in his approach.

I am grateful to the editor of the diocesan Catholic Post who has published the address of this blog site in the paper along with details of many of the regular venues of the TLM and who published such a fine obituary for Fr. Holmes.

The year of St. Paul has drawn to its end and we now celebrate the year of the Priesthood, as instituted by His Holiness the Pope. Firstly let us pray for the Pope and for all those good men who have offered their lives to the service of the Church by their priestly ministry. We should also ask God for an increase in vocations to the Priesthood. There is little doubt that there is great vibrancy in the Church at large with regard to restoring the Traditional Mass. The Pope desires that both Rites co-exist within the context of one Faith, one Truth, one Church, one Pontiff and that none of these should be out of harmony with each other.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Masses over the next few days

Saturday; Broughton Hall, 9.30 a.m.
Holy Spirit, Bath Road Heckmondwike, 11.30a.m.
St. Marie's, Gibbett Street, Halifax, 6.00p.m.
Sunday; St. Peter's, Leeds Road, Bradford, Missa cantata, 3.00p.m.
St. Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford, 3.00p.m.
Monday; Broughton Hall, 9.30a.m.
St. Marie's, Gibbett Street, Halifax, 7.30p.m. Solemn Requiem for Fr. Holmes.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

A very busy week

Most of this week has been taken up marking GCSE German speaking tests. The central heating and hot water system has conked out, the burglar alarm has died, the satellite television hasn't worked since a recent storm, my desktop computer now even refuses to boot up and the brakes on the car have started to squeak and squeal, just a month after the car sailed through the MOT.

On Tuesday it was lovely to be back at Bewerley Grange chapel, Pateley Bridge for a missa cantata for the feast of St. Augustine of Canterbury. Fr. Parfitt offered the Mass and the Parish Priest joined the congregation once again.

Masses on Sunday for the Feast of Pentecost are at Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardigan Road, Leeds at 3.00p.m. The celebrant will be Canon McCreadie, former Dean of the the Cathedral and now Parish Priest of St. Paul's, Leeds.
At the same time Fr. Durcan will be offering Mass at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Rd., Castleford.

Next Friday is the First Friday of June - the Month of the Sacred Heart.
Masses at Seacroft, 9.15a.m., Broughton, 9.30a.m. and Batley, 7.30p.m. (preceded by confessions).

Reminder of the forthcoming Solemn High Mass of Requiem at St. Marie's, Halifax on Monday 15th. June, for the Repose of the soul of Fr. Charles Holmes, at 7.30p.m.

Please pray for the young men ordained to the Sacred Priesthood in Nebraska, America for the Society of St. Peter today. One of them, an Englishman, Fr. Goddard will be offering his first Mass in England later in June. Ad multos annos!

Saturday, May 23, 2009


A sharp sighted reader of this blog rang me at lunchtime to tell me that yesterday's posting was wrong - there is NO Mass tomorrow at Cardigan Road. It is of course NEXT week (Pentecost). Apologies for this error.

Mass at Batley this afternoon was well attended as was the Missa Cantata at Halifaxthis evening. Many thanks to Mr. Forbester and his Rudgate singers for a magnificent contribution to the dignity and solemnity of the occasion.

Holiday treats

On Saturday there will be Mass at Batley at 3.00p.m. and a sung Mass at Halifax at 6.00p.m. Both these Masses fulfil the Sunday obligation. On Sunday Mass in the Extraordinary form will be offered at Castleford at 3.00p.m. and also at Our Lady of Lourdes, Cardigan Road, Leeds at
Missa cantata on Tuesday, 26th. May, 11.30a.m. at Bewerley Grange chapel, Pateley Bridge.

Friday, May 15, 2009

From Rorate Caeli

I had to copy and paste this from the Rorate Caeli blogsite:

A majestic address (main excerpts):
What happened here in Nazareth, far from the gaze of the world, was a singular act of God, a powerful intervention in history, through which a child was conceived who was to bring salvation to the whole world. The wonder of the Incarnation continues to challenge us to open up our understanding to the limitless possibilities of God’s transforming power, of his love for us, his desire to be united with us. Here the eternally begotten Son of God became man, and so made it possible for us, his brothers and sisters, to share in his divine sonship. That downward movement of self-emptying love made possible the upward movement of exaltation in which we too are raised to share in the life of God himself (cf. Phil 2:6-11).
The Spirit who “came upon Mary” (cf. Lk 1:35) is the same Spirit who hovered over the waters at the dawn of Creation (cf. Gen 1:2). We are reminded that the Incarnation was a new creative act. When our Lord Jesus Christ was conceived in Mary’s virginal womb through the power of the Holy Spirit, God united himself with our created humanity, entering into a permanent new relationship with us and ushering in a new Creation.
The narrative of the Annunciation illustrates God’s extraordinary courtesy (cf. Mother Julian of Norwich, Revelations 77-79). He does not impose himself, he does not simply pre-determine the part that Mary will play in his plan for our salvation: he first seeks her consent. In the original Creation there was clearly no question of God seeking the consent of his creatures, but in this new Creation he does so. Mary stands in the place of all humanity. She speaks for us all when she responds to the angel’s invitation. Saint Bernard describes how the whole court of heaven was waiting with eager anticipation for her word of consent that consummated the nuptial union between God and humanity. The attention of all the choirs of angels was riveted on this spot, where a dialogue took place that would launch a new and definitive chapter in world history.
Mary said, “Let it be done to me according to your word.” And the Word of God became flesh.
When we reflect on this joyful mystery, it gives us hope, the sure hope that God will continue to reach into our history, to act with creative power so as to achieve goals which by human reckoning seem impossible. It challenges us to open ourselves to the transforming action of the Creator Spirit who makes us new, makes us one with him, and fills us with his life. It invites us, with exquisite courtesy, to consent to his dwelling within us, to welcome the Word of God into our hearts, enabling us to respond to him in love and to reach out in love towards one another.
Benedict XVI
Vespers (Nazareth)
May 14, 2009
God bless the Pope!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I can't promise very much by way of posts, other than odd reminders, as I will be engaged in marking GCSE Modern Language exams for the next month.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Sunday sung Mass in Bradford.

Just a reminder that there is a sung Mass tomorrow (Sunday) at St. Peter's, Leeds Road, Bradford at 3.00p.m. The setting will be Lux et origo, with the Regina Caeli and Adoro te devote.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Blessed English Martyrs, pray for us

Tomorrow (Monday) is the Feast of the Blessed English Martyrs.

Who could deny that the inspiration of these heroic victims has been a bedrock to so many in recent years as we have seen the Church attacked from within and without?

As a result of a conversation with Fr. Abberton at Ushaw I have been doing some very enjoyable internet research on St Edmund Arrowsmith.

Mass at Broughton Hall at 9.30a.m.

Friday, May 1, 2009

St. Joseph the worker, pray for us.

My eldest son Joe, delighted to learn it was his feast day (again) today, served Mass at Batley this evening. Before Mass we went to confession. I was suddenly shocked when offering my penance I heard Joe's high pitched voice starting his confession. Humming loudly in my head I made my way over to St. Joseph's altar, where the Mass was to be fittingly offered, and I encouraged my youngest son to light some candles and safely out of earshot of that shrill little voice shooting into the air immediately around the "box".
I mused over this during the nicely attended Mass; why I acted as I did. Had it been anybody else I would have moved immediately and thought nothing of it. But was it because it was my son, who could have been innocently "dropping me in it" in the box, or relaying something which would grieve me, etc., which were obvious factors, those which made me move away? I think not. That little penitent, my son, just like those before and after him (me included) entered into that box in the belief that he could say anything that could not be repeated outside of it. Inside I instinctively know that my son made a simple and sincere confession, probably forgotten about by supper time. What I conclude is that me and my boy, dad and lad, spoke to our heavenly Father. It just wasn't for me to hear what my son was saying to the Lord, to whom I had just spoken at exactly the same level.
This led me to muse about the Feast of the Worker, St. Joseph. A foster father with a mandate from God the Father to raise His Divine Son as his own. How touching then was the Gospel - recounting the finding of the Infant Jesus in the Temple. What did St. Joseph think? With what humility must he have approached Jesus? Would his instinct to have been to beat his son, more in relief and thanksgiving than anger? Did St. Joseph realise that this moment was the one he had been expecting since learning of the Incarnation and that Jesus was now an adult? Thereafter we hear nothing more of him in the Gospels.

First Friday

Friday is the first Friday of May. Mass at Broughton at 9.30a.m. at Seacroft at 9.15a.m. and at Batley at 7.30p.m. (preceded by confessions). Mass in Bury at St.Marie's, Manchester Road at 7.30p.m.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

A good lead

Fr. Abberton has an excellent little set of posts about veiling at the moment on his Stela maris blogsite. See


May is the month of our Blessed Lady.

Certain pieces of very exciting pieces of information have come my way in the last couple of days which will give me plenty more to pray for during this month dedicated to our Blessed Queen and Mother.
Prayer for England
O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our most gentle Queen and Mother look down in mercy upon England, thy dowry, and upon us who greatly hope and trust in thee.
By thee it was that Jesus, our Saviour and our hope was given unto the world; and He has given thee to us that we might hope still more.
Plead for us thy children, whom thou didst receive and accept at the foot of the cross, O Sorrowful Mother, Intercede for our separated brethren, that with us in the one true fold, they may be united to the Chief Shepherd, the Vicar of thy Son.
Pray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith, fruitful in good works we may all deserve to see and praise God, together with thee in our heavenly home.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Feels like Heaven?

This picture from another LMS link of the recent Northern Conference should go down in history.

One priest said that the Mass pictured above was like heaven to him. I would love to see this picture on the front of a future edition of Mass of Ages. Another person said it would be a wonderful Christmas card.

There is a traditional pulse beating strongly in the frozen north and the torrid south.

Deo gratias!
God bless the Pope!


There is to be a solemn sung Requiem on Monday June 15th. at 7.30p.m. at St. Marie's Gibbett Street, Halifax. This will be for the repose of the soul of Fr. Charles Holmes who died in early April. This date was chosen as it also marks the 52nd. anniversary of Fr. Holmes' ordination to the priesthood in Lisbon, Portugal in 1957.

Mass at Bewerley

During half term there will be a Mass for the feast of St. Augustine at Bewerley Grange chapel, Pateley Bridge on Tuesday May 26th. at 11.30a.m. It will be a sung Mass. Thanks to Fr. Parfitt (pictured at our October Mass).
Reminders to follow.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Walking on sunshine

Ushaw was a wonderful success and even during the short time I was there I was able to do a lot of valuable networking and start to arrange several things in this diocese. The clergy who attended seemed to really enjoy themselves and clearly learned a lot.
To see nine altars being used simultaneously for morning private Masses was a wonderful and memorable sight.
A letter was read out from Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos in praise of the LMS's endeavours to offer training in the rubrics of the 1962 Rite of Mass.
The ripples of Ushaw 2009 will be felt for quite a while.

Deo Gratias!
God bless the Pope!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

On the road

Tomorrow after school I shall be travelling straight up to Ushaw College in Durham to attend Vespers and Benediction and dinner, to be followed by the Solemn High Mass on Thursday morning, before packing up the twenty sets of red, white and gold vestments along with missals and stands for 10 altars and lots of other things I had to put together and transport to the Sacristan for the week on Sunday, to bring them back home.

Fr. Wiley and Father David Smith are both on the staff with a good number of Leeds priests attending as students. Fr. Wiley e-mailed me earlier today to say how well things were going and said that yesterday's High Mass was as he imagined heaven to be.
I am looking forward to going up to Ushaw and to re-establishing links with clergy who attended the Oxford Conference in the summer, who have returned to learn the next step and to get to know the new faces with a view to providing support in the future as they make the EF of the Mass a part of their regular ministry, as do so many of our clergy now in these post Summorum Pontificum days.

God bless the Pope!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Divine Mercy Sunday

Holy Mass will be offered tomorrow - Sunday at 3.00p.m. at the hour of the Divine Mercy at St. Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford. Quasimodo Sunday, or Missa in albis, or Low Sunday and dedicated by Pope John Paul II as Divine Mercy Sunday is a source of many graces.

In the same deanery but at St. Joseph's , Pontefract later at 6.30p.m. there will be the reception of the body of Fr. Holmes followed by Holy Mass in the OF. Bishop Roche will officiate at the Requiem Mass on Monday.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Happy Easter

Firstly may I thank everybody who enabled the Sacred Triduum to take place so smoothly at Notre Dame chapel, Leeds. Thanks to Father Kravos the University Chaplain, Fr. Hall the celebrant of the entire Triduum whose singing of the Exultet was spine-tingling and whose kindness and patience were more than touching. Thanks to Mike Forbester and his very kind co-cantor for the singing and to Paul, Michael and Joe for the serving. Thanks also to Mr. Rutherford for acting as reader and collector on Holy Saturday.

On Good Friday I woke up with gout.
This has been extremely painful. I have been unable to drive and have spent the best part of the last two days in bed with an uncovered elevated foot, -perhaps also feeling slightly relieved at the rest it has afforded.

I now have to prepare and wrap 20 sets of Vestments, 10 sets of candlesticks, cruets, lavabo bowls and towels, having already dispatched 6 missal stands. I now need to print and laminate 10 sets of vesting prayers, prayers at the foot of the altar and Leonine prayers, prepare markers for 10 missals and set the missals and prepare these for dispatch for Low Week training conference for priests to be held next week at Ushaw.
I hope it's wet tomorrow!

God Bless the Pope!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Holy week begins

There have been several Masses over the weekend in the Traditional Rite for Palm Sunday.

Mass in the newly decorated resplendent church of St. Marie's Halifax was preceded by Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament on Saturday.

This morning in beautiful weather we had an open air procession at Broughton. The beautiful Mass witnessed the collapse of a regular attendee before Holy Communion. I have since been in touch with him and he is back at home. Father Parfitt administered a particle of the Host to him and he came round.

There was also Mass at Castleford this afternoon. This church has some of the most beautiful windows I have seen in a church of this era.

The Passion read at Mass today is a preview of what we are to re-live this week. Preparations are well underway for the Triduum to be held at Notre Dame Chapel, Leeds. See the sidebar for details.

Sad news

It is with great sadness that I report the death of Fr. Charles Holmes, the last Parish Priest of Holy Family, Chequerfield, Pontefract upon its absorption into the Parish of St. Joseph when Father retired aged 76 last August.
I have known Fr. Holmes for 35 years, he officiated at our marriage, at our request in Latin, when things were less straightforward than they are today.
Long before this, Father had requested permission to offer the old Mass when he was PP in Old Goole, to conclude the 40 hours devotion. Such permission was refused on the grounds that this should not be a parochial event.
He never mentioned it again, but at a time when the TLM was a taboo subject, Fr. Holmes was one of a very small number of priests who never refused us. He let us use the church for Low, Sung and Solemn High Mass. After one such Mass I remember a collection being taken in Chequerfield, where there were well over seventy at Mass. When I gave the basket to Fr. Holmes after Mass I remember his eyes rolling up to the ceiling. "Take it boy!", he said without reserve or hesitation. (I was 34 at the time.)
At Mass this evening at Halifax, Fr. Smith had before him the set of Mass cards given to him by Fr. Holmes which had belonged to the late Canon Bernard Shaw.
When he retired, Fr. Holmes gave me the only set of vestments he actually owned ,which he had taken from parish to parish, hand made for him from a wedding dress by an old nun who was partially blind. Doing this he said that I would know what to do with them. When recently he realised that the burse, veil and possibly maniple were still in the sacristy he made arrangements with me to get it. I had already got a bar of diabetic chocolate and book to take to him over Easter for our holiday meal.
Of your charity please pray for the repose of his soul.
Fr. Charles B. Holmes. April 3rd. 2009. R.I.P.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Archbishop Nichols

At the first LMS Training Conference in 2007 at Merton College I acted as crozier bearer to Archbishop Nichols, who opened the Conference. I also sat opposite to him afterwards at lunch. He said he had spent a lot of his holiday preparing his sermon for the occasion and then chatted away thereafter.
He put me very much at ease with his totally natural humility and sincerity.
At the very least we have a man who has the intelligence, determination and Faith to bring Catholics together, regardless of their preference for the EF or OF of the Mass in an orthodox way whilst allowing all that the Faith allows, and moreover in the face of rampant secularism.
I pray that he will increasingly embrace and promote the Benedictine reform of the reforms (especially in light of Cardinal Hoyos' rebuke of the Cardinal Archbishop of Manila for his rejection of the norms laid down by Summorum Pontificum, reminding him that nobody has the right to regulate what the Pope has allowed in what is now part of the Universal Law of the Church).
God bless the Pope!

A productive meeting

Tonight I had a co-ordination meeting with Fr. Wiley, diocesan co-ordinator for the TLM. As ever we were able to exchange news and views and to make further plans for the direction we are taking to become increasingly more mainstream.

Top of the agenda was arrangements for the Priests' training conference at Ushaw in Low week.

Several Leeds priests have signed up for the conference and two are on the staff. Fr. Wiley will be the sacristan, a position he held as a student there in the 1980s and Fr. David Smith, PP of St. Marie's Halifax who will be a tutor.

I have had a good number of people contacting me by 'phone and e-mail about the Sacred Triduum, to be held at Notre Dame Leeds, for the first time in many many years. Please pray for this event if you are unable to attend yourself.

Please remember also our Holy Father Pope Benedict and the new Archbishop of Westminster in your prayers.

Our Lady, Mother of the Church, pray for us.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Learn liturgical Latin?

If you would be interested in participating in a summer school devoted to liturgical Latin, an idea only in its infancy at the moment, please let me know at , it will probably take place in the south of England. At the moment we are just trying to gauge interest.



Sacred Heart, Broughton Hall, Skipton, 11.45a.m.

St. Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford, 3.00p.m.

(N.B. No Mass at Heckmondwike)


Notre Dame Chapel, 5 St. Mark's Avenue, Leeds (near university) 7.30p.m.


Notre Dame Chapel, 5 St. Mark's Avenue, Leeds (near university) 3.00p.m.


Notre Dame Chapel, 5 St. Mark's Avenue, Leeds (near university) 7.30p.m.


St. Peter's, Leeds Road, Bradford. 3.00p.m.

St. Joseph's, Pontefract Road, Castleford. 3.00p.m.


Monday, March 23, 2009

New LMS Chairman and Treasurer

At the LMS Committee meeting on Saturday 21st. March Dr. Joseph Shaw was elected as Chairman and Mr. Paul Waddington was elected as Treasurer.

I am looking forward to working with both of these men who, like me, are active diocesan representatives. Dr. Shaw is the rep in Oxford and organizer of many events there as well as the St. Catherine's Trust Summer School and chant training days. Mr. Waddington has been responsible for organizing the two southern priest training conferences and the training conference at Ushaw to be held after Easter.

I have every confidence that the Society will now be able to move forward. A lot of time was spent discussing the way ahead to help implement the Holy Father's Motu Proprio, Summorum Pontificum.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Another first

There will be a sung Mass in the chapel of Notre Dame, St. Mark's Anenue, Leeds on Wednesday 25th. March, for the feast of the Incarnation at 7.30p.m.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Feast of St. Patrick

Eight years ago today our fifth child died only seconds after I had baptized him. As the cleansing waters of baptism touched his forehead he opened and closed his eyes for the only time in his short life. Although we rejoice at him being our own Saint, young Patrick's rapid entry into Heaven still causes us periods of grief which can and do hit at any moment.
I still remember when towards the end of the pregnancy serious abnormalities were detected we were offered "an alternative" procedure. The sheer bloody injustice of it revolts me to this day. Killing the patient is not the answer. We detested the work the consultant was doing and told him so politely but firmly. No abortion, thank-you.

The feast of St. Patrick also is a time when I think of those members of my family tree now long gone who came to England from Mayo and Sligo in the mid 1800s. The Churches of Ss. Mary, Joseph, Ann, Patrick and their daughter churches, schools and convents here in Bradford were all testimony to the Faith and sense of community of those often desperate and impoverished people.

Patrick is also one of my baptismal names, so I'm celebrating with a not so Irish curry!

Patrick Benedict, born and died March 17, 2001.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Mass at Seacroft

Fr. Billington of Our Lady of Good Counsel, Seacroft, Leeds has e-mailed me to say that his weekly Friday Mass at 9.15a.m. (funerals and suchlike excepted) will be according to the EF of Rite of Mass.

Please pray for the success of this Mass and for Fr. Billington, who attended the LMS Summer Conference last year and had follow up sessions with Fr. Parfitt almost immediately.

Frs. O'Reilly and Harrison are both former P.P.s of this parish and were regular celebrants of the EF at Killingbeck in the time of Bishop Konstant.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Rome has spoken

The Universe weekly newspaper will from Sunday feature a regular page devoted to the TLM - activities, Masses and other events and related news items and by no means reserved to LMS activities.

I shall try submit events to this venture myself and for the first time in over twenty years buy a copy this weekend of the Universe, which was always a favourite with my great grandmother, who died in 1956. I'll carry on taking it if I like what I see. Regulars to this blog will be aware that I have long since stopped taking the Catholic Times because of the bitterly offensive stance against the Tridentine Mass and those who prefer it, as taken by its regular columnist and self styled Vatican Counsellor, Basil Loftus.

Basil's quaint views, usually directed with sarcastic vitriol disguised as humour or in personal recollection are common among a small minority of a particular generation of clergy, who realise that their desire to chop the tree from its roots and be masters of the new church are now proving to be an exercise in humility and they now know how those old and young priests in the late sixties felt when all that they had presumably held as true was quickly dismantled.

Thanks be to Pope Benedict the "Old Latin Mass" is still Mass, is still Latin (with vernacular readings if desired) but is now no longer old. The Holy Father's letter to the bishops seems to assume that the reintegration of the EF is now to be accepted as over. Roma locuta est, causa finita est.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Papal letter to Bishops with the fire and charity of St. Paul the Apostle

I have just read an astonishingly humble but extraordinarily powerful letter from the Pope. Not to me, but to the world's bishops about the lifting of the excommunications of the four SSPX bishops and the Williamson affair.
I did read the letter in German and so the following is only my recollection. The advantage of reading it in German for me is that I can also hear the Pope's voice.
The Holy Father makes no secret of the fact that the whole episode was badly handled, that there will have to be improvements in the future and that those who have sought to make things worse are those claiming to be champions of ecumenism, but show no such desire to extend their love to those in danger of schism and who are validly but illicitly ordained. The Holy Father reminds his bishops that Vat II wasn't the start of something different but a continuation of all that had gone before it. He likens a tree being severed from its roots and how this is destructive.

The Pontifical Commission Ecclesia Dei will henceforth be part of Faith and Doctrine and not Worship. It is I suppose now felt that the Liturgy of 1962 has been sufficiently absorbed or kick started back in to the mainstream life that the process continues. It is totally assumed that the EF is now part of the norm (which he probably well knows is not the case) and the letter sends out this message without saying it.

It will be fascinating to see who is appointed to take over Cardinal Cormac and according to some blogsites this may be very soon. Let us pray that he will be a Pope Benedict's man.

God bless Pope Benedict!


The planning for the Training Conference at Ushaw is now well underway. At the last count there were 5 priests from the Leeds Diocese involved. We are grateful to the Diocese for alerting clergy to the Training Conference.
I have been charged by Mr. Waddington, chief organizer, with working with the Father Sacristan to co-ordinate the simultaneous celebration of Mass at 10 altars up to four times a day.
I am on the hunt for ten sets of Low Mass Vestments in red and white along with cruets, linen, candlesticks, candles, bells, lavabo dishes, chalices, cards, Missal stands and Missals with ribbons. I have one or two people in mind to help me. If you regularly read this blog you might be asked for a favour!

Until I get the gadget to download photos from the camera replaced, you will just have to imagine what a magnificent setting Ushaw is. The St. Cuthbert's chapel is totally stunning. Father Abberton asked me what I thought about the altar used for celebration of the New Mass. Having hardly noticed it I said that it hardly imposed. What did impose was the old high altar. It was quite a marvellous sensation to feel humbled before it. The altar represents Christ, the Lord. This is why it is blessed, consecrated, venerated, kissed, anointed with holy oil, doused in water, dressed, undressed, veiled and unveiled. In the tabernacle we behold the Manger in Bethlehem, the blessed fruit of Mary's womb, Christ crucified and resurrected. Like those wise men in search of the Manger so to we go to the tabernacle - to Christ - to the altar to find the Lord, we encounter Herods, Pilates and hostile people all the way to the tabernacle - whoever we are. Sometimes we feel overwhelmed by the obstacles. For me the words of a modern hymn spring to mind, when this is the case - "But then Lord I think of You and I am given strength, Walk with me O my Lord..." . When I was Head of Year at my last school I had the children sing this at exam times in assembly.

This Lent like every Lent, the days seem to to get longer sooner and yet things always seem harder. Through regular fast and abstinence I do believe we gain spiritual strength, even when we are hanging on by the tips of our fingers to resisting that glass of scotch, that cigarette, that chocolate, that keema dansak or bag of crisps and that when we fail we are no worse for starting again.

Tomorrow I have the second of a series of meetings to make arrangements for the Sacred Triduum as well as liturgical research and...yes more year 9 reports.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

A restful Sunday

Today was one of those when my mood is in harmony with the lovely weather. Although it was cold the sun was shining and it was dry. I stayed in bed for as long as I dared before the sarcastic reminders of the time from anybody going upstairs or downstairs started.

Mass at St. Peter's was sung by Fr. Hall who gave a very interesting insight into the Transfiguration. I love the Transfiguration and I could share Father's amazement at the sheer power of the presence of God at that moment in time and replicated for us in the Gospel.

The late afternoon sun shone beautifully into the lovely church. Father had heard several confessions before Mass and at Mass Fr. Wiley sat in choir and acted as bell ringer! There were several students at Mass (half the congregation was under 25) who were able to help Mike Murphy sing the wonderful Attende Domine at the Offertory and Communion. Fellow Blogger, Jane Theresa, of the excellent My Heart was Restless blog was at the Mass and she was able to make contact with Frs. Hall and Wiley as well as Mike Murphy who has roped her in to singing there again on Easter Sunday!

A LMS Committee meeting yesterday prevented us celebrating my eldest daughter's birthday together so we went out for a meal after Mass. It was nice to be able to eat some meat, even if it wasn't curried.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Normal sevice....

I have been encountering a lot of difficulty accessing the internet , with crashing e-mails and lots of access errors. Having prepared the slide show of typical LMS activity in the diocese and trying to download photos from my camera was the last straw.
There is excellent news about the Sacred Triduum about which I'll post in the next couple of days.
On Sunday there is the regular monthly Missa Cantata for Lent II at St. Peter's Leeds Road, Bradford at 3.00p.m. Mass will be preceded by Confessions and the Diocesan co-ordinator for the EF, Fr. Wiley will be in choir. Our regular celebrant Fr. Hall will sing the Mass.
At Castleford, also on Sunday, at 3.00p.m. we will welcome a new regular celebrant. Please make every effort to attend one of these Masses.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Ash Wednesday

This Wednesday sees the start of Lent. Mass and distribution of ashes will be at Sacred Heart, Broughton at 11.30a.m.

Ash Wednesday is a day of fast and abstinence.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Who is afraid of the big bad wolf?

My little photo gallery of activities will be complete tomorrow. It has been a very busy week not least because I have had lots of household jobs to do as well as marking and preparation which I was unable to complete even after spending a half day in school earlier this week. Our youngest son came back from his friend's full of beans but with something walking in his hair, I have inadvertently overdrawn at the bank and incurred a £100 penalty charge, the car needs a new front light bulb and the dog has to have a lump removed.

So life goes on, thanks be to God.

Local stuff I'll post about tomorrow.

This has been a very interesting week in the traditional Catholic world. For some I imagine it has been a nightmare and for others a delight. For others a mixture.

To summarize;

Bishop Richard Nelson Williamson has been requested to leave Argentina within ten days for apparently not having stated his correct status when requesting his residence permit.

Austrian Bishops are in revolt over the appointment of an outspoken priest as auxiliary Bishop of Linz, Herr Pater Wagner. Pater Wagner has according to some sources requested the Holy Father remove his name as candidate. Other sources suggest this request has not yet been formerly received, accepted or rejected by the Vatican.

The LMS is in hot water for an invitation sent to Archbishop Raymond Burke requesting him to offer Mass at Westminster Cathedral and to address its AGM, before squaring it with His Eminence, Cardinal Murphy O'Connor. On learning of the acceptance of Archbishop Burke the Cardinal appears to have objected on grounds of canon law, but aware probably that come June
he will be in retirement, graciously offered one of his auxiliary bishops, who will be the first ever English bishop to offer the Society's annual AGM in Westminster Cathedral. This confidential information was mysteriously leaked to a blog site and understandably the Cardinal's office was less than happy when this information got round, there is a full report in today's Catholic Herald.

The Universe newspaper, which for many years has been a poor read and full of clips and captions of crimpolene clad clergy with silly badges and and multi-coloured stoles is from Lent onwards to carry a regular Traditional Catholic News page. I hope that this breath of life will not prove to be a case of calling the vet to save the life of the pig in a pork pie. As a Lenten exercise I shall start taking the Universe and then carry on buying it after Easter if it successfully achieves what is says it is setting out to do. I no longer take the Catholic Times on account of Basil Loftus's boring attacks on what he loathes and his repulsive adulation of those thing which I dislike most.

The Tablet this week attempts to do a hatchet job on an ideal post Summorum Pontificum parish to which I have referred elsewhere, namely Our Lady of the Rosary, Blackfen in the Archdiocese of Southwark. This parish in south east London offers a Saturday Vigil Mass and three Sunday Masses, three of which are in the Ordinary Form, one in Latin and one ad orientem, one family Mass and one in the Extraordinary Form. A group of no more than a dozen parishioners have complained about this and having received no satisfaction from Bishop Pat Lynch have resorted to imploring the help of the Tablet which published a venomous but equally self-defeating assault on the PP and his legal innovations .

Two priests in this diocese of Leeds who share the view that the Tablet has truly overstepped the mark have recently refrained from offering this seditious little rag at the back of their churches and others have told me of rapidly declining interest even amongst its more relaxed parishioners, making them consider the value of continuing to offer it.

As I write I have learned of another priest wishing to learn to offer the 1962 Mass and two others offering to help out which is leading to another possible first for us.

Please continue to pray for our Holy Father Pope Benedict as he feeds his sheep and searches for his lost lambs whilst fighting off the wolves and the wolves in sheep's clothing. Who are the big bad wolves? Have they had their day?

Monday, February 16, 2009

The week ahead

Tuesday sees another visit to Bewerley Grange chapel at Pateley Bridge, with a Missa cantata at 11.30a.m.

I took photographs on Saturday at Halifax, on Sunday at Castleford and intend to keep the camera to hand for the rest of the week's activities. I shall post these in due course. Bewerley is very camera friendly. I remember the snowdrops vividly last year.
Wednesday will be a first for me with trip to Ushaw. Again I shall have my camera to hand.

To those who are in the west of the diocese and/or who can get to Bury on Friday evenings should be aware of the regular Mass there at 7.30p.m.

Fr. Francis Wadsworth, the P.P. offers Mass and gives an inspiring/thought provoking/practical and invariably Christ-centred sermon, which never fails to bring a wry smile to the lips, at least once.

It is wonderful that in so many parishes, compared with the situation much less than a decade ago, the Extraordinary Form has taken root and is flourishing, the Parish of Our Lady of the Rosary, Blackfen or St. Mary Magdalen, Brighton would be obvious examples to regular bloggers but closer to home St. Joseph's, Castleford, St. Marie's, Halifax, Sacred Heart, Broughton, St. Mary's Batley, Our Lady of Lourdes, Leeds, St. Peter's, Bradford and Holy Spirit, Heckmondwike are all already regular venues in this Diocese. There are more in the pipeline.

The photo above was at St. Peter's Bradford before the Mass of the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, September 14th. 2008.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Half term

Half term is here, very shortly we will be half way through the school year and it will be downhill to the summer.

My trip to Ushaw is scheduled for Wednesday and before that on Tuesday there is Mass at Bewerley Grange Chapel at 11.30a.m. This will be a Missa cantata. The medieval chapel of Bewerley is noble simplicity itself which comes alive whenever Mass is offered there.

This weekend there will be Mass at Broughton at 9.30a.m. at Heckmondwike at 11.30a.m. and at Halifax at 6.00p.m. on Saturday and on Sunday at Castleford at 3.00p.m.

Mass on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday at Broughton Hall at 9.30a.m.

Please pray for one of the pupils at my school who was taken to hospital this afternoon having been stabbed at the bus stop after school. As yet I have no other details.

Monday, February 9, 2009


I often hear this word at school but have never used it before, but today I am buzzing!

All of a sudden a lot of things have come together and I have had lots of loose ends tied up. This I had expected long before Christmas, so patience has now been rewarded. I will post on these in due course.

There has been a lot of interest in the forthcoming conference at Ushaw and as a member of the sub-committee responsible for this Conference I am taking a trip to Ushaw with fellow Committee member and Middlesbrough Rep next week to check out things.

Leeds clergy have been e-mailed about the event by the Diocese and I am heartened by the number of priests from all over the UK who have written letters of support or to personally to apologize for not being able to attend but to be informed of similar events in the future.
After a bit of prompting from the LMS the Catholic Herald and The Tablet now give the Feastdays of the 1962 missal each week.

Buzz over!

In the wider Church it appears that Mgr. Williamson has been relieved of his position as rector of the SSPX seminary in Argentina after the 4 bishops wrote a joint letter to the Vatican.

Cardinal Lehmann of Germany has since called for the re-excommunication of Mgr. Williamson.

Unity does not come easily.
More prayers for the Pope please.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

First Friday

Tomorrow is the First Friday of February. There will be Mass in the morning at Broughton at 9.30a.m.

Mass in the evening at St. Mary's, Cross Bank Road, Batley at 7.30p.m. preceded by confesions.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Snow for Candlemas

This morning I arrived at school at 8.20 to find that it had been closed due to heavy snow. I did a couple of hours of filing and preparation and at 10.40 took my marking to the car. A trouble free stretch over the moors to Keighley enabled me to join the Skipton Road for Broughton's Candlemas Mass at 11.30a.m. A few others had braved the weather from the western side of Skipton. It was a beautiful Mass, with incense at the blessing of the candles and a token procession around the little chapel. The blessing of candles and procession replace the prayers at the foot of the altar, and as Father made the sign of the Cross at the Introit, the symbolism of this rubric suddenly struck me.

Lunch as Father Parfitt's guest was a very enjoyable and unexpected pleasure enhanced by the welcome break from the routine. The Mass was offered for the intentions of Barbara Cave and so I was pleased to be able to hear the Mass "on behalf" of my old teacher, friend and mentor Mary Cave, for whose sister, the Mass was being offered and was unable to hear the Mass herself.

Even better news then - when I got home the Deputy Head rang to say school is closed tomorrow, along with all other local schools.

I was able to discuss one or two other matters with Fr. Parfitt and already have to pass on details of extra Masses to the Office.

As we are back to liturgical purple for the pre-Lentern Season on Sunday I am pleased to say that there will be Mass on Ash Wednesday to mark the start of Lent at Broughton at the slightly later time of 11.30a.m......... Dare I ask for snow on that day?!

Tomorrow gives me a chance to do the marking still in the boot. I also have a great deal of LMS Committee business to deal with. More than ever I can recall. The Pope knows how to keep us busy. I now smile to myself at the thought of a former Bishop of this diocese joking to one of my predecessors that as Rep he would hardly be exhausted with his workload. What goes round appears to come round.

Just over twenty years ago Archbishop Lefebvre excommunicated; last week the excommunication of the four ordinands the Archbishop consecrated was lifted. Meanwhile there was the uproar caused by imprudent remarks and the humble apology to Cardinal Hoyos and the Holy Father from Bishop Richard Williamson following the interview with Swedish television in which he expressed some ghastly opinions about the holocaust. Williamson has since been silenced by the order's Superior General, Bishop Fellay and has also written a humble letter to Cardinal Hoyos in which he expresses his sorrow at his imprudence and the problems these have caused the See of Peter, without actually acknowledging the very nature of that for which he was having to apologize.
Some blogs had quoted rumours about official recognition by Rome of the SSPX as soon as tomorrow. Others believe that this has been put back because of the anti-semitic remarks by Bishop Williamson.

There are also blog rumours of a personal prelature for disaffected Anglicans given the carry on over "women bishops".

What, I wonder, will tomorrow's historians make of today's news?

Our Holy Father Pope Benedict is at the helm.

God bless the Pope, the Great, the Good.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

News from Rome

Earlier today it was announced in Rome that the Holy Father has lifted the 20 year excommunications imposed upon the bishops by Pope JPII who were consecrated by the late Archbishop Marcel Lefebvre.
I am sure that those who hear Mass tomorrow at the SSPX church in Keighley will feel that the Holy Father has gone a long way to address grievances referred to him by Bishop Fellay. I rejoice in the Lord for them that the path to dialogue has been opened.

Just after Summorum Pontificum was published a priest I know had been speaking to a Vatican Official at the time who had made no secret of the fact that the Motu proprio was in fact just a start to further Benedictine Reforms. It is a good time to be a Catholic.

Meanwhile I expect that there will be a lot of muck being thrown at the Pope given that Bishop Williamson is a holocaust denier, or would have us believe this. Bishop Williamson also has some unusual views about The Sound of Music.
How do you solve a problem like Richard?