St Philip's Day and the old Solemnity of Corpus Christi fall on the same day this year - in fact St Philip died the day after Corpus Christi in 1595. We will have some special music at the 12.10pm Mass on Thursday, 26th May in honour of St Philip, but the Mass will not take much longer than usual so people will be able to get back to work.
In the evening we will celebrate the old Solemnity of Corpus Christi at 6pm with a Missa Cantata in the Extraordinary Form followed by a Procession of the Blessed Sacrament in church. The choir will sing the Mass in C Minor by Mozart.
Brother Adam only has to go as far as Oxford for his Oratorian and priestly formation. The four young Aussie novices of the Brisbane Oratory in formation are doing their studies in Canada at the Toronto Oratory. Snow is evidently a novelty! They have made an entertaining video of a day in their life.
This group meets in the Upper Room on Mondays after the 12.10pm Mass during school term time. It enables parents of pre-school children to get to a weekday Mass and have some social time and play time with children afterwards. More information from Jenny Melbourne. [Photographs published with parental consent]
The new community in Cardiff will be supported by the Birmingham Oratory. Its main work is at the Chaplaincy for the University of Cardiff.
The new community in Bournemouth will have guidance from Fr Dominic Jacob of the Oxford Oratory. Fr Peter Edwards and Fr David Hutton, the two other priests going to Bournemouth, have made quite a few visits to us here in York over the last few years, and the project in Bournemouth has been inspired by the Oxford Oratory and the York Oratory in formation.
Fr Richard has visited the parish in Bournemouth. It is more than a seaside resort. The magnificent church and hall are at the centre of a lively shopping and student area and there is a very diverse Catholic community from all parts of the world.
There are three Oratories in the UK, in Birmingham, London and Oxford, and four communities in the process of formation in Manchester, York, Cardiff and Bournemouth. Each place has very different pastoral needs and challenges. We wish the new communities every blessing and the joy of St Philip in the work they have undertaken.
Joyce Kilmartin inaugurated the new disabled stairlift to the Upper Room on the way to coffee and cake after this morning's 10.30am Mass. It seemed right on Ascension Day! Many thanks to the Church of the Sacred Heart, Redcar and the Parish Priest, Canon Derek Turnham.
We have had about £500 in donations towards the £2000 cost of moving the lift from Redcar and installing it - further donations would be welcome.
Our girl confirmation candidates enjoyed a great afternoon and evening with the Franciscan Sisters at Corpus Christi in Leeds, sharing in the community life and joining in the Holy Hour with their women's prayer group. Tessa, the Oratory dog, came along later.... The boys will be going to visit the Franciscan Friars later in the month to experience their work and prayer in Bradford.
Last week the Order of Preachers marked the eight-hundredth anniversary year of its foundation with a celebration of Vespers in Westminster Cathedral. Fr Richard was present with Fr Daniel, the Provost of the Oxford Oratory, our superior here in York.
The Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster presided, and the Archbishop of Liverpool, the Most Reverend Malcolm McMahon, O.P., preached.
The Oratory has much to be thankful to the Dominicans: St Philip said that everything good in him was learnt from the friars at San Marco in Florence. In Rome, he used to take the Dominican novices for picnics, saying, "Eat! It makes me fat to watch you." Philip had the key to the side door of the church of Santa Maria Sopra Minerva, so that he and his followers could go into the choir for Compline. It was there that the Forty Hours' Devotion was first introduced to Rome, to pray for a favourable judgement on the writings of Fra' Girolamo Savanarola, whose portrait hung in Philip's room, with a halo drawn by the saint himself. During the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament at the Minerva, Philip went into an ecstasy and declared that the Pope had ruled in the Dominicans' favour, at the very time when this decision was later discovered to have been made.
Many of our own community have benefited from a Dominican education. Br Adam is studying with them now and Br Henry will start this coming autumn. We pray that our brethren at Blackfriars in Oxford, and the whole Order of Preachers, may continue to flourish for the next eight-hundred years.
Thursday is the old Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. There will be a sung Latin Mass in the Extraordinary Form at 6pm. Please note that it is not a Holiday of Obligation and that in the Ordinary Form the Solemnity will be celebrated next Sunday.