Magazine March 2022

St Mary’s Parish Magazine | MARCH 2022 | £ 1
is published monthly by the Parish Communications Committee.
Please put your £1 contribution for the magazine in the box provided.
This will help us to defray the cost of printing. Thank you!
Mary Bennett, Sue Bingham, Judith Rice Nickson, John Sabido & Ali Smith
Mary Bennett
Contributions for the next issues should be emailed to:
BEFORE Monday 11th April 2022
The views expressed in the articles in this magazine
are the personal opinions of the authors only.
“an excellent parish magazine”
Bishop’s Visitation Report 2017
Susan Bingham
In the next instalment of our occasional series,
Judith Rice Nickson reveals how her teaching now
knows no boundaries.
It’s 6.30 in London on a Thursday evening. In Melbourne,
it’s 5.30am; in Istanbul, 9.30pm. Yet we all gather together to
discuss the Aorist in Classical Greek; we are joined, too, by an
elderly enthusiast from Brighton and a wandering young civil
servant who is sometimes in the capital but more often in his
mother’s Sussex cottage or his experimental flat in Bristol.
It’s Saturday afternoon – I am encouraging some students with
their Latin. One is in Chicago, one in Luxemburg, one in the
Philippines, one flat on his back in Skye with Chronic Fatigue.
Others are scattered around England and one is in Edinburgh
(who knew access to the classical languages and culture was
so popular and so difficult to find?)
This is lockdown teaching in a London adult education institute;
and it’s liberating. As constraints lessened, people checked in
from holidays in Italy or France; last week one woman joined
from a car on the way to Cambridge because they had broken
down en route ( I suggested she turn the mic off when the AA
man turned up). After our mid-lesson break she appeared from
a hotel bedroom.
When all my teaching went online, the effects were various.
Open University work changed little – although the loss of
face-to-face day schools and tutorials was missed. Teaching
children was more challenging, but these particular ones were
well-provided with computers and our managers were
inventive and supportive. It’s true that some of the younger
rebels created dodgy online pseudonyms and took advantage
of the leniency about camera use to slope off entirely … But for
the sixth formers Zoom was in many ways a boon. I could
challenge them to take more control of their own learning,
while offering tailored personal support.
But the permanent, exciting change was for my adult ed classes.
Many colleagues have now returned to the classroom but
I currently have no such plans. Instead of rickety chairs we are
all in the comfort of our homes, in reach not just of coffee and
half-time buns but enormous dictionaries and commentaries.
Instead of lugging textbooks around I can just reach across
my desk. We all have access to the internet for independent
searches. I can share ‘hosting’ so that students take turns in
giving presentations on words or themes of their choice –
we’ve had Roman trousers, ancient pirates, classical bees,
the colour purple, and Roman undertakers, to name just a few.
People of all ages join from all over the country and all over the
world and build up a camaraderie which I am loath to disrupt
by insisting on a return to a central London building. And the
breakout rooms! One seasoned student in my advanced Latin
class commented recently on what a huge improvement these
are. People really get the chance to work together. I drop in to
see how they are getting on with their analysis of Suetonius or
Virgil and find them tussling with finer points of grammar,
looking up alternative translations for comparison, debating
imagery, and bantering about the similarities between
politicians then and now.
Perhaps the most exciting aspect of this transformation in
learning is that people can join who otherwise never could.
My student in Skye is so excited by the whole thing that he has
signed up for several other languages as well. Curiously, he
originally moved to Skye because he was so enthused by
learning Gaelic in the same London college 20 years ago;
now, bed-bound, he would be unable to do any kind of shared
study were it not for online classes. My Edinburgh student
joined us even as she recovered from a hip replacement.
And I myself, though convalescing at home for several months
from a badly broken shoulder, have managed to carry on
teaching all my students in all my jobs. And how did I break my
shoulder? Running for a train on my daily commute.
I rest my case.
Words by Mary Bennett, song by Queen.
Which is the greatest British invention? The Steam Engine?
The Steam Turbine? Radar? The Jet Engine? The Bicycle?
This was a heading in a newspaper article, suggesting the
reader decides. As I wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the
bicycle, the decision was easy for me.
I have long been interested in the history of cycling as I have in
my possession my grandfather’s membership card of the
Dromio Cycling Club, a name thought to be derived from the
Greek word “ dromos”, a course or a race.
He was the club secretary in 1899. The date struck me as
interesting and I looked up when the bicycle was invented.
In 1895, John Kemp Starley produced the safety bicycle. In 1888,
John Dunlop had invented the pneumatic tyre. The previous
solid tyres were all right on dirt roads but not on the increasing
number of tarmac roads.
I suppose you can call the bicycle, as we know it, a British
invention, but the original prototype was an invention of a
German Baron, in 1817. It is possible his interest was to find an
alternative to the horse as a method of getting around. Mount
Tambora had erupted causing a crop failure in 1815, and horses
were starving to death.
The Laufmaschine – or running machine – was nicknamed the
Dandy Horse. It was operated by both legs and boots tended to
wear out. Several French inventors developed a prototype with
pedals attached to the front wheel, which made steering
difficult. These were the first machines known as bicycles and
also as bone-shakers!
In the hope of adding stability, new models sported an oversized
front wheel and they became known as the Penny Farthing.
“Coming a cropper” and “taking a header” were expressions
that appeared during the popularity of this model, when riding it
was the preserve of adventurous young men. 1870/80 gave rise
to the first bicycle clubs and races.
The British input came from James Starley, a farmer’s son, born
in Sussex. He ran away from home as a teenager and came to
Lewisham, where he worked as an under-gardener for John
Penn of Belmont Hill, in a house now known as the Cedars.
Although a gardener, John Starley also showed himself adept at
mending watches. His employer, John Penn, bought an
expensive sewing machine. Starley mended it and improved the
mechanism. John Penn knew Josiah Turner, a partner of the firm
that made the machine. In 1859, Starley joined the factory in
Holborn. Turner and Starley moved to Coventry and started the
Coventry Sewing Machine Company. Turner’s nephew brought a
French bone-shaker to the factory in 1868 and the company
started making bicycles.
So Coventry became the centre of the British bicycle industry.
Their Ariel bike was all metal and had wire spokes, much lighter
than wooden ones. Tangent spokes were patented in 1874.
Tricycles, often in strange configurations, were devised for
women and couples. Riding a tricycle with another person in the
other saddle, each rider drove his own wheel independently, but
found they could not steer!
Starley, an older man, lacked the strength of his son. One day,
Starley cried “I have it!”, dismounted and, over a cup of tea,
invented the differential gear! This is now incorporated in the
transmission of every car.
After his death, his sons continued making cycles, but it was his
nephew who produced the Rover Safety Bicycle with 26-inch
wheel (still standard size), chain drive in 1885. The safety bicycle
gave women unprecedented mobility: it came to symbolise the
new women of the late nineteenth century, especially in Britain
and the US.
There was a backlash against the new bicycling women: when
the male undergraduates of Cambridge University wanted to
show their opposition to the admission of women as full
members of the university, they hung an effigy, in the main
square, of a woman on a bicycle. Since women could not cycle
in the voluminous skirt and restrictive dresses of that time, the
bicycle craze fed into the movement for so-called rational dress,
which helped liberate women from corsets and ankle-length
skirts, substituting the then shocking bloomers!
And my own personal investment in the history of the bicycle?
In 1900, my Grandfather married my grandmother, also a
member of the Dromio Cycling Club.
We are now well into the season of Lent and also well
aware of the practices for the observance of Lent. Of equal
importance, however, are the history of Lent and the
opportunities arising from its observance, writes Bill White.
The exact days of the Lenten season have varied over the years,
but it is now accepted to be from Ash Wednesday until the first
Mass of Easter Sunday. Shrove Tuesday, the day before the start
of Lent, is so called from the ‘shriving’- that is, the confession
and absolution – of the faithful in preparation for Lent.
Ash Wednesday derives its name from the imposition of ashes
on the heads of clergy and people, as a token of Lenten
penitence and mourning.
The term Lent is derived from lencten, the Old English word for
Spring, because it usually occurs during March when the days
are lengthening. This seasonal and optimistic note contrasts
slightly with some other languages, where it is named after the
custom of fasting; in French le carême and in German die Fastenzeit,
for example.
Fasting was recommended by Christ during his earthly ministry
and observed by the apostles, but the forty days period before
Easter was first formalised at the Council of Nicea in AD 325.
The period of forty days was influenced by Christ’s fasting and
resisting temptation in the wilderness, in preparation for his
earthly ministry. It also gave time for the preparation of
catechumens, before their baptism at Easter. Fasting is now
restricted to Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, but abstinence
from alcohol and some favoured foodstuffs is recommended for
the whole of the Lenten season to prepare us for the feast of
Easter and in the words of the Catechism to ‘acquire mastery
over our instincts and freedom of heart’.
For the 2015 Year of Mercy, Pope Francis suggested that ‘the
season of Lent should be lived more intensely as a privileged
moment to celebrate and experience God’s mercy’. Lent is our
time for spiritual conversion by showing that we can resist
temptation and follow the teachings of Jesus instead. To this
end, we can look to the daily liturgy of the Word to nourish us on
our Lenten journey.
Pope Francis gives us a start in our journey by recommending
the reading of the Gospel of Saint Luke, the evangelist of Mercy.
Luke reveals God’s mercy in the words and actions of Jesus in
stories of the feeding of the multitudes and many healings of the
sick. There are also the parables that are known and loved by
many outside the Church as well as inside: the tale of the
prodigal son; the lost sheep; and the good Samaritan.
Saint Augustine gives us encouragement when he declares in
one of his sermons:
‘Christians ought to be fervently engaged in almsgiving, fasting
and prayer throughout their lives; much more so then at the
approach to the great festival of Easter.’
On a lighter note, I was working one spring in the Rhineland of
Germany, a strongly Catholic area, where the spectacular preLenten carnival in Cologne is famous. I was eager to join in the
carnival activities, but a colleague warned me not to venture into
town on the evening of Shrove Tuesday or – if I did – not to wear
a tie. That evening is known as Weiberfastnacht, when women roam
the streets brandishing large pairs of scissors to cut off the ties
of any men that they encounter. ‘It’s only symbolic of course’,
he remarked, but I stayed in that evening and joined in the
boisterous but less hazardous celebrations on Shrove Tuesday!
A “cranky original”, sharp-witted, fearless, adventurous
and unpredictable are just some of the epithets used by the
New York Times to describe the writer and satirist, Patrick
Jake O’Rourke who died last month, writes John Sabido.
In his student days, as a self-proclaimed hippy, he was a left
winger working for a liberal underground magazine until it was
taken over by Maoists for not being radical enough, an event
which was to change the course of his political thinking. As he
put it, “I got too fat to wear bell bottoms and I realised that
communism meant giving my golf clubs to a family in Zaire.”
Consequently, he became that rarity among American satirical
writers and authors: a Republican-leaning humourist who was
not afraid to skewer both sides of the political divide in his
acerbic articles and 20 or so books.
He never forgot his youthful origins, however, and the recurrent
theme in his writing was his place in his generation – the baby
boomers, on whose behalf he wrote, addressing younger
readers as follows:
“My generation spoiled everything for you. It has always been
the prerogative of young people to look and act weird and
shock grownups. But my generation exhausted the earth’s
resources of the weird … all you had left was to tattoo your
faces and pierce your tongues. Ouch. That must have hurt.
I apologise.”
Here are some more memorable quotes, many of which are of
their time but remain amusing:
“Anyway, no drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental
ills of society. If we’re looking for the source of our troubles, we
shouldn’t test people for drugs, we should test them for
stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power.”
“Russians not only vehemently despise blacks, they believe
Africa begins at the Ukraine border.”
“Don’t send funny greeting cards on birthdays or at Christmas.
Save them for funerals, when their cheery effect is needed.”
“Everybody with a gun has a checkpoint in Lebanon. And in
Lebanon, you’d be crazy not to have a gun. Though, I assure
you, all the crazy people have guns, too.”
“Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey
and car keys to teenage boys.”
“When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first
things to be bought and sold are legislators.”
“Death is so important that God visited death upon his own son,
thereby helping us learn right from wrong well enough that we
may escape death forever and live eternally in God’s grace.”
“If you are young and you drink a great deal it will spoil your
health, slow your mind, make you fat – in other words, turn you
into an adult.”
“The 1960s was an era of big thoughts. And yet, amazingly,
each of these thoughts could fit on a T-shirt.”
“Each child is biologically required to have a mother. Fatherhood
is a well-regarded theory, but motherhood is a fact.”
“Just because a subject is serious doesn’t mean it doesn’t
have plenty of absurdities.”
“The two most frightening words in Washington are ‘bipartisan
consensus.’ Bipartisan consensus is when my doctor and my
lawyer agree with my wife that I need help.”
“The library, with its Daedalian labyrinth, mysterious hush, and
faintly ominous aroma of knowledge, has been replaced by the
computer’s cheap glow, pesky chirp, and data spillage.”
“The difference between American parties is actually simple.
Democrats are in favor of higher taxes to pay for greater
spending, while Republicans are in favor of greater spending,
for which the taxpayers will pay.”
“Republicans believe that government doesn’t work and then
get elected to prove it.”
“You know your children are growing up when they stop asking
you where they came from and refuse to tell you where they’re
“The Nobel Peace Prize has always been a joke – albeit a grim
one. Alfred Bernhard Nobel famously invented dynamite and
felt sorry about it.”
“We will win an election when all the seats in the House and
Senate and the chair behind the desk in the Oval Office and the
whole bench of the Supreme Court are filled with people who
wish they weren’t there.”
“I live in New Hampshire. We’re in favor of global warming.
Eleven hundred more feet of sea-level rises? I’ve got beachfront
property. You tell us up there, ‘By the end of the century, New
York City could be underwater,’ and we say, ‘Your point is?’”
James G Clark
In recent times there has been an increasing interest in the
history of England during the 16th century – not just the life
of Henry VIII and the Reformation – but a recognition that
this was an era in which the life of our country was changed
radically – the end of the Middle Ages and the beginnings of
the modern age, writes the Blackheathan Reviewer.
The changes covered the social, the economic and the religious
life of the nation. In the past, there has been a tendency to
concentrate on the religious controversies and to explain them
from a partisan point of view – the wickedness of the reformers
or the problems and corruption of the Church. However recent
scholarship has provided a more balanced account of events.
The writings of Eamonn Duffy, such as “The Stripping of the
Altars” have become well known.
Professor James Clark of Exeter University has added to the
store of knowledge with his new book, “The Dissolution of the
Monasteries”. Up to now, much of our understanding of these
events have been taken from the writings of Dom David Knowles,
a monk of Downside and a fellow of Peterhouse Cambridge.
His studies are comprehensive but as Clark points out, they are
written from the point of view of a Benedictine Monk.
The author of this new book has undertaken an extensive
amount of research, using the public records that are available
both centrally and in local offices. Inevitably many of the records
are incomplete. The result is an account of some of the events
which took place between 1526, when Cardinal Wolsey, with the
authority both of the King and of Rome, undertook a
comprehensive review of religious houses, until 1540 when the
closure of monasteries, friaries and convents was completed.
The book runs to 450 pages with extensive indexes – with the
various chapters covering specific themes including the following:
• The original role of the religious houses in the life of the nation
• The inspections and the agreements for closure made by the
King’s commissioners under the authority of Thomas Cromwell
• The disposal of the property of the houses including the
treasures and also the ownership of land and houses
• The future personal lives of those who left the monasteries
and convents
• The disposal of the lands owned by the monasteries
• The beginnings of a new way of life, with the establishment
of civic authorities to undertake the roles previously covered
by the monasteries.
It must be said that at times, this is not an easy book to read.
Many of the extracts from ancient documents are given in their
original old English. To give a typical example, a page might
show quotations recording the sale of lead from Religious
houses, giving references for perhaps half a dozen places.
The author will then move on to another theme – the way in
which stone from the monasteries was incorporated into local
parish Churches. The same place may be noted many times
under different themes: for example, Battle Abbey. I would
certainly have appreciated some detailed case studies of
individual communities, putting together all that happened in one
place – from the first visitations to the departure of the final
members of the community and the ultimate fate of the buildings.
And yet the reader will learn much from this book. The Abbeys
had an enormous role in the life of the nation, not just in the
religious life of the people, but through the ownership of
properties, helping to organise the general economy of an area.
An interesting point is the gradual transfer in the 1530s of religious
life from an Abbey Church to the Parish Church. In many places
the Abbey helped to organise education, social care, and medical
facilities. All this had to be replaced. Some of the local uprisings
against the changes resulted from resistance to the loss of
tenancies by local people. The monks at Bayham Abbey in East
Sussex opposed the changes but this was encouraged by the
local iron founders who were tenants of the Abbey.
Some of the monastic buildings remained in use as Churches.
Others were to be incorporated into secular buildings – the
fictional Downton Abbey reflects this. Materials were reused
for new buildings in many cases, whilst some have remained
empty shells following the removal of the more valuable parts.
The treasures were collected by the King, and it is suggested
that much of this was used to finance the building of castles
and forts as well as warships.
Many of the members of religious communities became secular
clergy. Indeed, it is suggested that in some cases, co-operation
with the King’s agents led to favourable appointments and by the
end of Henry’s reign, several of the Bishops were former monks.
On the closure of a monastery, it was customary for the
members of the community to be granted a small pension.
This varied as it was dependent on the amount that was
available from the original endowments. The female religious
were less fortunate. Under the laws of the King, they were not
allowed to marry. Many of them had to rely on the generosity
of their families for their support.
I hope that this gives an idea of the extensive nature of this
book. As I have suggested, this is not an easy book to digest at
a single sitting. But it is a mine of fascinating information that
rewards the reader with a new and wide-ranging understanding
of these events.
A friend recently recommended a series of talks entitled:
‘‘The Bartimaeus Project”. After exploring the Bible timeline
course by Catholic speaker Mauro Iannicelli through
live streamed talks last year at,
I couldn’t wait for the next opportunity to learn more about
our faith and to attend these talks online in my armchair
at home, writes Margaret Lear.
The Bartimaeus Project involves a series of talks on fundamental
theology given by a group of parish priests in the Diocese of
Arundel and Brighton which give people a deeper understanding
of the Catholic Faith.
The talks began with “Lectio Divina” prayer and meditation. By
using this visualising style of prayer, one meets the unstoppable
man of faith, Bartimaeus. Lectio Divina is a form of prayer which
invites us into a deeper encounter with the Lord through the
Scripture. It gives us the time to listen attentively to the Word, to
be sensitive to its action in our hearts, and to reflect on what is
being asked of us in our daily lives.
The Bartimaeus Project begins with a powerful image. In Mark
10:45-52 a story is told of a blind man, Bartimaeus, and his
extraordinary encounter with Jesus outside Jericho. The odds of
meeting Jesus were stacked against him. Bartimaeus was alone,
a poor beggar and blind! Jesus was walking by, talking to a great
crowd. Somehow Bartimaeus knew that Jesus was the
promised Messiah, “Son of David.” Bartimaeus unrelentingly calls
out to Jesus, all the while getting louder and louder, and the
more the crowd tries to silence him, the louder he shouts:
“Jesus Son of David have Mercy on me!”
Jesus, moved by his cries, stops and asks him what he would
like him to do for him. Bartimaeus throws off his cloak, springs
up, and comes to Jesus. Jesus heals his blindness saying: “Go
on your way your faith has healed you.” Immediately he recovers
his sight and follows Jesus.
During the talk, we are invited to ponder the following questions:
Where in my life do I need the gift of courage?
What would I ask Jesus?
Fr Dingley, who delivered this talk, points out there is a lot to be
learned from this faith-filled blind man. He reminds us that Faith is
our access to God our loving Father. Faith, even as small as a
mustard seed, can move mountains! (Matthew 17:20). “Master
let me receive my sight”, let me understand more deeply that our
Merciful God is touched by pure faith.
The Bartimaeus Project reminds us that God would like us to call
him. In turn, our wonderful God is not silent but speaks to us
through his Word. Our loving God wants a personal relationship
with each of us. Faith is our access to God and the only way to get
to know Him is by Faith. Fr Dingley says the times we live in can
make this Faith journey difficult. However, the Bartimaeus Project
can help us to grow our Faith by seeking to understand Him.
Find out more – including how to register for the course online –
at Sessions run from 7.30pm to
9.30pm on the dates shown below. The talks are recorded and
are all due to be available on Youtube.
Outline of Bartimaeus Seasons
SEASON A First things First: Fundamentals
March 1 Speak, Lord Your Servant is listening: God’s Revelation.
March 8 He who hears you hears me: Handing on God’s
March 15 The Word of God: What is the Bible and how did we
get it?
March 22 The Bible in 40 minutes: Rich diversity and s ome
Unifying Themes.
SEASON B Reasonable Faith
Sept 29 Why seeing isn’t believing: what sort of a thing is faith?
Oct 6 Why faith isn’t a leap in the dark: how faith and reason go
Oct 13 Why Dawkins is wrong: understanding the
complementarity of science and faith.
Oct 20 Why Dawkins is wrong again: how science actually
points to God.
Further topics:
SEASON C Life in Christ: Today’s moral issues
SEASON D I believe: Unpacking the Creed
SEASON E Christ in Life: Theory and practice of prayer
The speakers are Fr Stephen Dingley and Fr Tony Milner.
The talks are easy to access via Zoom and are sent to your email
address the day before the talk (but make sure to pre-register).
Small group discussions are organised after the talk in online
breakout rooms. A helpful list of possible questions is also given.
It’s a wonderful way to talk about our faith after enjoying a wellinformed and excellently delivered talk. Great use is made of
powerpoint slides and pictures during the course, and there are
links to further reading.
I have thoroughly enjoyed the first two sessions and am looking
forward to the next talks, as I am sure you would.
“Lord Let Me See”
Jesus and his disciples came to Bethsaida, and some
people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him.
He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside
the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put
his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?”
He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees
walking around.”
Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his
eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw
everything clearly. Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t even go
into the village.” (Mark 8:22-26)
In the Gospels are found several stories where Jesus heals a
blind man. The healing of man born blind and the healing of
Bartimaeus are two favourites. Healing the blind is a task the
Spirit sent Jesus to accomplish after his baptism and the 40
days in the desert. It is not only about physical blindness. Jesus
said to the Pharisees that they are blind and are not aware of it.
We may notice ourselves that this blindness makes us incapable
of empathy, understanding or trust. We may long for a change
and realise that we need help. This specific story in the Gospel
of Mark stands out because the man is not healed in a single
session. After the first therapy on the man’s eyes, Jesus asked
him if he saw something. The man answered that he saw
people looking like walking trees! Jesus touched his eyes a
second time and his sight was restored.
Let’s pay attention to some details of the narrative:
• Some people are bringing the man to Jesus and begged him
to touch him. How do you understand the meaning of asking for
another? What do you make of the words ‘beg’ and ‘touch’?
• Jesus takes the man out of the village, and then forbids him to
return. How do you understand this? How can it be part of the
healing process undertook by Jesus?
• Jesus touches the man’s eyes. He is doing the act of creation
of God in Genesis in moulding clay. Instead of water, Jesus uses
spit. Instead of dust, he uses the ineffective eyes of the
man.Does that image speak to you?
• Finally, we can notice the personal relationship between Jesus
and the blind man. Jesus leads him, they talk, the healing works
by stages until the man is free to go.
We find this verse in the book of Wisdom (Wisdom 12: 1-2)
‘For your immortal spirit is in all things.
Therefore you correct little by little those who trespass,
and you remind and warn them of the things
through which they sin,
so that they may be freed from wickedness
and put their trust in you, O Lord.’
We give thanks for the Lord for his patience and pedagogy with
us. He said: ‘I came for you to have live and life in all its fullness’
(John 10:10)
We can pray with the first verse of a Lenten hymn
Open my eyes, Lord
To the wonders of your love
I am the blind man on the road
Heal me, I want to see you.
Monday 11, Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 April 2022
Come any time between 2.30 pm and 8.30 pm.
The chapel and various rooms are available for silent
contemplation of different parts of the Passion beginning with
the Last Supper and the Washing of the feet. We will use texts,
books, pictures, installations and art material. One of the rooms
will be set aside for music, films and PowerPoints.To close
each day, we will gather in the chapel for a time of worship.
Teas and coffees will be available. You are welcome to bring
a picnic supper. Everybody welcome. No need to book.
3.30 – 5 pm J S Bach’s ST MATTHEW PASSION
semi-staged by Peter Sellars.
Sir Simon Rattle with the Berlin Philharmonic. First Part. (Film)
Animated film on the novel of Jean Giono. A short film on hope
and revival. (25 ‘)
7.30 – 8.00pm Evening prayer with the community
3.30 – 5 pm GRAN TORINO A film by and with Clint Eastwood.
A veteran from the Korean war, haunted by guilt, coaches a
boy threatened by a gang. A story of redemption.
6.30 – 7 pm WAY OF THE CROSS
Silent contemplation of the Beaconsfield Church’s, sculptures
by Peter Foster. PowerPoint. (15’)
7.30 – 8.00pm Evening prayer with the community
3.30 – 5 pm J S Bach’s ST MATTHEW PASSION
semi-staged by Peter Sellars.
Sir Simon Rattle with the Berlin Philharmonic. First Part. (Film)
Contemplation of the Beaconsfield Church’s, sculptures by
painting of Rogier van der Weyden. PowerPoint. (15’)
7.30 – 8.00pm The readings and prayers will be interspersed
with Music for solo recorder, performed by James Risden
By Hazel Wilkinson
In 1960, a group of Catholic women organised a family fast day in
response to reports of starving families on the Caribbean Island
of Dominica. They promoted it in their parishes and through
wider networks, such as the Union of Catholic Mothers and the
Catholic Women’s League. Families were encouraged to pray
and to eat a simple meal and to donate whatever they saved to
help people in Dominica. The women raised more than £6,000 –
about £96,000 in today’s money – far exceeding their
expectations. Beyond immediate relief, they were able to fund a
new mother and baby clinic and projects supporting local food
Their initiative provided the model for subsequent CAFOD Family
Fast Days and led to CAFOD’s recognition as a charity in 1962.
There are now two CAFOD Family Fast Days every year – one
during Lent and another in the autumn (the “Harvest” Family
Fast Day).
Sixty years on, CAFOD supports many varied projects in 40
countries working with over 400 partner organisations. It raised
£52.4m last year of which £36.4m was donated by the Catholic
community in England and Wales. Thanks to those donations and
other grants, CAFOD spent £43m on international development,
responses to emergencies, education and campaigning.
Thank you for your generous responses to CAFOD Family Fast
Days. Last year St Mary’s sent over £750 to CAFOD (not including
individual donations made direct).
CAFOD Prayers and Aid for Ukraine
This year’s CAFOD’s Lent Family Fast Day coincided with
appeals for aid for those affected by the war in Ukraine. In
response, the parish donated over £1,400. CAFOD is a member
of the Disasters’ Emergency Committee (DEC). Details of the
DEC’s appeal for Ukraine are widely available.
CAFOD appeals have always included a request for prayers as
well as funds. As Pope Francis urges us to continue to pray for
peace, here are two prayers suggested by CAFOD.
A Prayer for the Gift of Peace
May God give wisdom and courage to those who work for peace.
We pray that their efforts may be blessed,
That they may bring an end to violence and solace and stability
to suffering peoples.
May the gift of peace permeate all troubled souls,
convert those who live by violence
and comfort all children who live in menacing situations,
that the freedom to enjoy life and grow in safety may be theirs.
And may each one of us know
peace of mind and heart,
peace of body and spirit,
peace of community and world.
Holy Spirit of Peace, grant our prayer. Amen.
A Prayer for Ukraine
Loving God,
We pray for the people of Ukraine, for all those who are
suffering and afraid,
that you will be close to them and protect them.
We pray for world leaders, for compassion, strength and wisdom
to guide their choices.
We pray for the world that in this moment of crisis we may reach
out in solidarity to our brothers and sisters in need.
May we walk in your ways so that peace and justice become a
reality for the people of Ukraine and for all the world. Amen.
Finally, many thanks to Karen Suddaby who has been the parish’s
CAFOD representative for many years. Karen has now stood down.
Please contact Hazel Wilkinson (
if you think you might like to take this on.
27th MARCH 2022
Sunday Masses Saturday 6.30pm first Mass of Sunday
Sunday 9.30 and 11am and 5pm.
Monday to Friday Lenten Service at 8am.
Saturday Mass at 10am and 6.30pm
Confessions Saturday 12 to 1pm
Today is the Fourth Sunday of Lent.
We are now half-way through Lent and as a slight relaxation
we use rose coloured vestments today rather than the normal
purple. A time maybe to see if you are keeping up with your
Lenten penances and prayers.
It is sometimes known as Laetare Sunday from the first
words of the Latin Introit verse: Rejoice Jerusalem.
As a Lenten devotion there will be Stations of the Cross at
6pm today.
Next Sunday is Passion Sunday and the statues in the
Church will be veiled until Easter Sunday.
This coming week I will be away at the College in Spain,
travelling out on Monday and returning on Friday. This means
that there will not be an 8am Mass from Monday to Friday this
week. There will however be a reading of the Lenten
Scriptures, distribution of holy Communion and Rosary at 8am
each day. I hope to be back on Friday evening so everything
will be in order for the next week-end.
This is the first time that I have been to College for two years.
The last time was just before the Covid lock down and I
remember speculating with the financial advisors on what
might happen.
A new Rector has been appointed and I will be seeing if we can
arrange a visit in October. Let me know if you might be
interested in coming.
Looking ahead, readers for holy Week might want to borrow
one of the books with the reading of the Passion.
Thanks to Elio and Jim – and Floss – for their help with the
replacement ladder on the tree in the garden. I think the
previous one lasted about four years. It is a tedious task,
marking the rope in sections, adding the knots and threading
the rungs. There was also a couple of visits to B and Q to
obtain rope of the right thickness.
A Lenten prayer
Lord hear the prayers of those who call on you, forgive the sins
of those who confess to you, and in your merciful love give us
your pardon and peace. Amen.
A basic Spanish recipe you will find in every bar
Cook some long grain rice and wash and drain it well. Add
some skinned and seeded tomatoes and strips of a green
pepper. Mix with some mustard and some vinaigrette dressing
and may be decorate with some half of hard-boiled egg.
You can prepare this as a Lenten dish.
Best wishes to you all,
Monsignor Nicholas Rothon

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