World Day of Prayer for Creation
Early in August, on the Feast of the Transfiguration, Pope Francis
established 'in the
Catholic Church, the “World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation”
which, beginning this year, will be celebrated on the 1st of September,
as the Orthodox Church has done for some time now
pray today for all of God's creation, and particularly that humanity
may recognise not simlply the gift it has been given, but also the
responsibility it has as steward of that gift.
In the letter creating this new day the Holy Father wrote:
“The annual World Day of
Prayer for the Care of Creation will offer individual believers and
communities a fitting opportunity to reaffirm their personal vocation
to be stewards of creation, to thank God for the wonderful handiwork
which he has entrusted to our care, and to implore his help for the
protection of creation as well as his pardon for the sins committed
against the world in which we live.
for Link to the Papal letter).
On Friday 21st August
to Lourdes 2015
Paul led the Southwark diocesan pilgrimage
They travelled with The Catholic Association who has organised
pilgrimages to Lourdes for over a hundred years. While preserving the
diocesan identity, they will be part of a larger group and have the
opportunity to meet people from other dioceses, schools, and
organisations throughout the country
They go to Lourdes in response to an invitation of Our Blessed
Lady to go there in Procession, to give praise to God Our Father, to
meet him in the Eucharist, to make known his Kingdom here on earth.
Mary invites us to go to Lourdes to pray, to contemplate the mysteries
of the Rosary, the Rosary which Pope Paul VI called 'a synthesis of the
The Pilgrims remember the whole diocese in their prayers and worship
and ask the whole diocese of pray for them in return
On Saturday 22nd
Canon Ed Perera, the Diocesan Director, and Bishop
Paul host a meeting for Southwark Pilgrims. They were joined by
Monsignor Bill Saunders who is Director of the whole Pilgrimage
On Sunday 23rd
the Pilgrimage joins over seven thousand others for the
Sunday International Mass, held in the Underground Pius X Basilica
The Catholic Association lead the Sunday night Marian Torchlight
On Monday 24th the prilgims
processed to the Grotto
Mass at the Grotto
Penitential Service at St Pius X Basilica Monday afternoon
On Tuesday 25th
the Southwark Diocese celebrated Mass as a group and
with the Catholic Association in the Notre Dame Chapel
At the end of the Mass Bishop Paul blessed the specially
prepared Diocesan Candle, and those present carried it, first to the
Rosary Square where the official Diocesan photo was taken, and then
past the Grotto to light the candle
On Wednesday 26th
our pilgrims visited the 'Baths'. Each year the
Pilgrimage is asked to spend some time accompanying those waiting for
the baths. This year Bishop Declan Lang of Clifton led the Rosary, and
the Catholic Association musicians, with some extras, provided hymns
between each of the mysteries
Each year one of the Masses is organised by the children and young
people of the Pilgrimage
There are two particular groups:
The Glanfield Group, who bring children whose lives are made
complicated by certain medical conditions to Lourdes.
The HCP - Helpers Children's Programme - who assist parents on the
Pilgrimage who wish to help in Lourdes by taking care and engaging with
their children while they work
The Mass organised by the children: this year a mime was carried out
while the Gospel was read; the children read the bidding prayers, and
some of the young adults sung the Psalm and sung a reflection piece
Bishop Paul Hendricks presided and preached at the Mass, and Southwark
provided the reader for the First Reading.
After a busy day of prayers at the Baths, Stations of the Cross, Mass
organised by the Children, the Southwark Pilgrims gathered for some
On Thursday 27th
the pilgrims joined the Anointing of the Sick in St
Pius X Basilican
Please pray for the repose of the soul of
Deacon Philip Gummett
who died on 15th August 2015
His body will be received into St Peter's Catholic Church
Bargoed CF81 8RJ
on Tuesday 25th at 18:00 followed by Mass
His Funeral Mass will be held at
Catholic Church, Bargoed, CF81 8RJ
at 11:30 on Wednesday 26th August 2015
followed by burial in Gwaelod yr Brithdir Cemetery, NP24 6JY
All are welcome
In lieu of flowers - donations to
The Alzheimer's Society or The Rocky Appeal (QA Hospital, Portsmouth)
c/o D J Thomas & Son, Bargoed, CF81 8NW
he rest in peace
Blessed Oscar Romero Thanksgiving Mass
On Saturday 15th August 2015, the 98th anniversary of Blessed Oscar
Romero's birth hundreds of people from across the UK gathered for the
National Mass of Thanksgiving in Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St
George to celebrate the life, martyrdom and
beatification of the Archbishop of Oscar Romero.
Mass was celebrated by Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor, patron of the
Archbishop Romero Trust, joined by fourteen other priests, including
three other bishops. The Cardinal wore the chasuble brought back from
the Beatification in San Salvador, which has been gifted to the
At the end of Mass, a candle made for the occasion was lit by the
Romero Cross designed by Fernando Llort and which contains relics of
After Mass, the congregation gathered in Amigo Hall to hear from Bishop
Dixon and Julian Filochowski of the Romero Trust who were all
privileged to attend the beatification, before a toast to Romero and
Cardinal Cormac cut a birthday cake for Archbishop Romero's birthday.
Images from the event can be found on the Romero
Trust's Facebook page
some images taken by Carols Reyes Manzo are on the Romero
A round up of events around the world for Romero's birthday can be
found on the Super
Apostleship of the Sea
on from the recent blessing of the new Seafarers Centre Sheerness in
May this year and Sea Sunday (second Sunday of July), the diocese is
delighted to once again support the Apostleship of Sea by hosting the
“Stella Maris Mass for Seafarers” in the Cathedral at 12.30pm on
Thursday 24th September.
All are invited to this Mass, which
will be celebrated by Bishop Tom Burns SM, to pray for seafarers and
the work of the Apostleship of the Sea who continue to support
seafarers’ faith and welfare needs.
Visit their website for more information on the work of the
5th July 2015, Francis Murphy (far left of photo) was instituted as an
Acolyte and, on 12th July, David Howell (next to Francis) and Phil
Andrews (far right of photo) were ordained deacons by Bishop John
The ceremonies took place at Palazzola, the villa of the Venerable
Please pray for these students and for all our Southwark seminarians.
Bishop for Migrants - Bishop Pat Lynch
‘deeply concerned over the deepening
humanitarian crisis’ in Calais
“I am deeply concerned over the deepening humanitarian crisis involving
thousands of migrants unfolding in Calais. The crisis has developed
over a decade and challenges us all, both as Christians and as
Europeans. We must face up to this reality at various levels.
"First, in solidarity with the most vulnerable migrants we recognise
pastoral, humanitarian, and compassionate response from the French
Church and call on the French authorities to redouble their efforts in
providing adequate reception facilities for migrants. We acknowledge
the work done by faith organisations in France and the UK together with
charities, agencies and the great generosity of families and
individuals to the relief efforts. The task is immense and their
contributions are most valued. The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of
England and Wales will be making a material contribution to those
"Second, at an international level we are aware
that the answer to the current migrant crisis lies beyond Calais.
Estimates from the UNCHR indicate that “In the first six months of this
year, 137,000 refugees and migrants crossed the Mediterranean Sea,
travelling in terrible conditions upon unsafe boats and dinghies”. The
2014 estimate for the same period was 75,000. Therefore in addition to
addressing the humanitarian needs of the increasing numbers of migrants
undertaking this treacherous journey we must examine the root causes of
current migration from North Africa and the Middle East across the
Mediterranean Sea to Europe.
"Third, we must face up to the
shared responsibility of making the world a better and safer
environment to live in. We must examine as a matter of urgency the arms
trade that fuels armed conflict and civil war, climate change, unjust
economic policies, poverty and corruption as some of the underlying
causes of this fundamental global trend. The safety of vulnerable women
and children who may fall prey to smugglers and human traffickers is
paramount and must be addressed.
"Finally, the current
migration crisis is complex and there are no easy solutions for
governments, non–governmental organisations, faith groups and charities
working on the field. However, governments, charities and humanitarian
aid agencies should be encouraged to work together for a collaborative
international response to the challenge in partnership with the
countries of origin. Countries of origin must recognise that ‘the
defence of migrants rights’ is viable and effective when based on a
firm foundation of legal norms, and operates under the rule of law.
(Caritas Europa 2009)”.
Bishop Patrick Lynch
Chair, Office for Migration Policy
Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales
New online training for Safeguarding
Trust of England
and Wales has purchased a package of e-learning programmes
that are available
to every member of the Catholic community in England and
Archbishop Peter vists
St Columba's Catholic Boys' School - Bexleyheath
On 15th July 2015 Archbisho Peter join the whole community of St
Columba's Catholic Boys' School for their end of school Mass.
At the end of Mass the Student
Leadership team for
next year was announced. Students who
have got through staff
and student interviews
to be members of
the whole Student
Leadership Team then
voted for the posts of
Head and Deputy Head
Boy. Edward Stocker
is the new Head Boy
and Michael Adegoke
Callum McGlynn and
David Oputa have been
voted as Deputy Head
Boys for 2015/16.
Also at the end of Mass the schooled presented cheques to CAFOD for
over £1,100 and to the Balamorie charity for £437 thanks to the
generosity of the students
Priesthood Ordinations of
Matt O'Gorman and Mark Higgins
seminary students completed their journey to the priesthood when they
were ordained by Archbishop Peter on Saturday 18th July. The ordination
took place in a full Cathedral, where Mark Higgins and Matthew O’Gorman
were joined by many family, friends, parishioners and clergy.
Archbishop Peter was joined by Bishop Howard Tripp, Bishop Nicholas
Hudson and over eighty other priests for the Mass.
The candidates prostrate
before the altar during the Litany of the saints
of the newly ordained priests are from the Parish of Saint Elphege,
Wallington, and both attended the John Fisher Secondary School, Purley,
although a few years apart. They both celebrated their first Sunday
Mass as priests in the in the Chapel of the Fisher School, one
following the other. The weekend was a joyful and happy occasion, for
them, their families & friends, their parish, their School, and
Archbishop Peter preaches
during the Mass,
particularly to Matthew O'Gorman (left) and Mark Higgins (right)
Mark Higgins, who was as St John’s Seminary, Wonersh, for his
formation, has been appointed to St Andrew’s, Thornton Heath.
Matthew O’Gorman, who was at the Venerable English College, Rome, for
his formation, has been appointed to St John the Baptist’s, Purley.
They will take up their first appointments in September.
RC Archdiocese of Southwark Archives
Our Diocesan Archivist, Jenny Delves, has added to
the Archives' blog.
Clergy Appointments and News
Announced July 2015
A word of welcome to Fr
Francis Lynch and Fr Oliver Antao, who have
both been incardinated in to the diocese.
Archbishop Peter over the past months has made the made the
Father James Teeling as Dean of the Chatham Deanery, to serve for the
remainder of the three year term of office.
Canon John Kavanagh as acting Dean of the Lewisham Deanery,
from the 1st August to the 30th November, while Father Doug Bull is
away on a short sabbatical break.
Father Sharju Varkey as Episcopal Vicar for Ethnic Chaplaincies.
Father David Camilleri as Parish Priest of St James, Petts Wood.
Father Richard Reid CSsR as Parish Priest of Our Immaculate Lady of
Father Francis Lynch as Parish Priest of Saint Gertrude, Bermondsey
South, having previously been the Parochial Administrator.
Father Peter Pagac SDB as Parochial Administrator of The
Sacred Heart, Battersea West. Peter kindly agreed to take on
responsibility for the parish as Father Kieran Anderson SDB, the Parish
Priest, is away from the parish due to poor health.
Father Anthony Cassidy CSsR, as Parochial Administrator of Saint
Matthew, West Norwood.
Father Michael Ryan, as Parochial Administrator of Saint Simon Stock,
Deacon Stephen Newman as Archbishop's delegate for the Pastoral Care
of Permanent Deacons.
Deacon Barry Chalkley as Director of Formation for the Diocesan
Permanent Diaconate programme.
Father Keith Sylvia as assistant priest at Our Lady of the
Addiscombe Parish, following his priestly ordination.
Father Emmanuel Okorondu,
from the Diocese of Orlu, as an assistant
priest in the parish of St Andrew, Thornton Heath.
Father Vitus Okechukwu as an assistant priest in the parish of St.
Stephen, Welling, also from the Diocese of Orlu.
Other moves and changes:
Father Philip Smith CF has been appointed as a full time
chaplain to the British Army, and has joined 5th
Battalion the Rifles in Paderborn, Germany.
Welcome to Father Patrick D’Souza sfx, who has been
appointed as the Goan Community Chaplain, succeeding Father Francis
Rosario sfx. Father D’Souza is a member of the Pilar Fathers’ community
Welcome to Father Hyacinth Okafor cm, who has joined the parish team
based at St Paul’s Thamesmead.
Welcome to Fr Kouevi Adjetey Louis Mawoulolo mccj who has
joined the Comboni Fathers Community in Battersea Park Parish and
will minister as an assistant priest in the parish of Our Lady of Mount
Carmel and St Joseph, Battersea Park.
Father Sang Mok Kwon will be completing his term as Korean
Catholic Chaplain and will be returning to Korea at the end of the
successor will be Father Joong Hee Kwon of the Diocese of Andong. He is
due to take up his appointment on 1st September 2015.
Archbishop Peter at The John Fisher School - Purley
The John Fisher School
in Purley was delighted to welcome Archbishop
Peter Smith to be the celebrant at their end of Mission Week Mass on
Friday 10th July.
The Mass took place on the school field adjacent to the school chapel
in glorious sunshine. A great opportunity to have this special Mass at
the end of a memorable week, particularly as it comes at the end of
85th Anniversary Year
They were joined by Year
6 boys & girls from Regina Coeli and
St Elphege’s RC Primary Schools who were in school for the day on
It was also fitting that many Headteachers from local Catholic
primary and secondary schools were present, as the Mass also marked the
impending retirement of Mr Scully, the Headteacher.
The Sion Youth Team
coordinated and led the school community through
the celebration, including some rousing hymns and a final mime from all
Archbishop Peter spoke
of the importance of evangelisation -
challenging all present to continue the work of the Apostles in
standing up for and sharing our faith.
The service ended with
Mr Scully thanking all those who contributed
towards the Mass and Mission Week, especially the inspirational team
(Ondrej, Bexx, Kimi, Dan, Esther, Matt, Hannah, Kathleen and Joseph)
who became an important part of the school community for the week. The
real challenge for everyone is to ensure that the spirit
of Mission Week is continued over the months and years ahead - until
the next one in 2020.
Finally, Archbishop Peter presented the school with an Apostolic
Blessing from His Holiness, Pope Francis, to commemorate the 85th
Anniversary of its foundation.
Four Permanent Deacons ordained for Southwark
Archbishop Peter Smith
ordinated four Permanent Deacons on 4th July
2015 for the Archdiocese of Southwark in the Metropolitan Cathedral
Church of St George.
Our new Deacons are
Deacon Julian Burling who has been
appointed to Sacred
Heart Wimbledon, Deacon Simon English and Deacon Tom McCarthy who have
been appointed to St. Anselm Tooting Bec and Deacon Peter Sebastian who
has been appointed to St. Raphael Surbiton
Brief History of the
The apostles in
Jerusalem, finding it difficult to combine the
distribution of food to the poor with preaching the word and prayer,
appointed seven ministers to serve those in who were in need (cf Acts
6:1-7), charity being considered as central to the ministry of the
Church. The apostles handed over this duty to ‘men of good reputation,
filled with the Spirit and with wisdom’ by praying and laying hands on
them. Among these was Stephen, the first Christian martyr. Saint Paul,
writing about 57 AD, includes deacons in his greeting in Philippians
(1:1) and writing to Timothy lists the qualities and virtues which all
deacons are expected to possess and exercise in their ministry (I Tim
3:8-13), indicating that the diaconate had already become a separate
office in the Church. The very term “Diakonia” describes the central
characteristic of this order: the deacon is called to service. The
witness of the early Fathers of the Church acknowledges the importance
of the diaconal ministry. Saint Ignatius of Antioch, about 100 AD, says
that it would be impossible to have the Church without bishops, priests
and deacons. He explains that their task was nothing less than to
continue ‘the ministry of Jesus Christ’.
The Permanent Diaconate
After the fifth century, however, there was a decline in the permanent
diaconate in the Latin Church. From the early Middle Ages the diaconate
remained only as a transitional order that men received as part of
their preparation for the priesthood. There were occasional exceptions
to this rule however, Saint Francis of Assisi, for example, was
ordained a deacon but not a priest. But the reality was that the
permanent character of this order was abandoned by the Latin Church for
The Second Vatican Council decided that the time was ripe. The
permanent character of the order was restored and renewed when the
Council in October 1963 called for the reestablishment of the ministry
of the permanent deacon. In June 1967, Pope Paul VI carried out the
desire of the Council when he published the Apostolic Letter Sacrum
diaconatus ordinem in which he reestablished the permanent diaconate in
the Latin Church. The Council, in its Dogmatic Constitution on the
Church, echoes the ancient image and concerns of the New Testament when
it speaks of the ministry and nature of the diaconate:
At a lower level of the hierarchy are deacons, upon whom hands are
imposed "not unto the priesthood, but unto a ministry of service”. For
strengthened by sacramental grace, in communion with the bishop and his
group of priests they serve in the diaconate of the liturgy, of the
word, and of charity to the people of God. It is the duty of the
deacon, according as it shall have been assigned to him by competent
authority, to administer baptism solemnly, to be custodian and
dispenser of the Eucharist, to assist at and bless marriages in the
name of the Church, to bring Viaticum to the dying, to read the Sacred
Scripture to the faithful, to instruct and exhort the people, to
preside over the worship and prayer of the faithful, to administer
sacramentals, to officiate at funeral and burial services. Dedicated to
duties of charity and of administration, let deacons be mindful of the
admonition of Blessed Polycarp: "Be merciful, diligent, walking
according to the truth of the Lord, who became the servant of all."
(Lumen Gentium para. 29)
In the final years of
Archbishop Cyril Cowderoy, the first Southwark
permanent deacon, Edward Driscoll, was ordained by Bishop Charles
Henderson in July 1975. When Archbishop Michael Bowen succeeded to the
diocese in 1977 he gave the permanent diaconate his wholehearted
support and lost no time in establishing a course of studies for
permanent deacons (1978) and four new permanent deacons were ordained
in 1980. Since then the steady flow of ordinations has brought the
number of our permanent deacons to over eighty.
Mike Cullinane retires after 42 years working in Catholic
On the 1st July 2015
Mike Cullinane, Deputy Director of Education at
the Education Commission in the Archdiocese of Southwark celebrated his
family, friends and colleagues
Archbishop Peter was the
main celebrant at Mass in the Cathedral and
thanked Mike for all his hard work and kind help to the Archbishop when
ever he needed it
Mike was educated by the
Sisters of Charity of St Paul in primary
school in Coventry then by the Vincentians in Secondary school. He went
on to St Mary’s Strawberry Hill in 1970 to 1973 were his main subjects
RE and History
He has spent 27 years in
4 Catholic secondary schools in the
Archiocese, 3 years in a state school (which Mike quotes as 'my
The last 11 years teaching as Headteacher Bonus Pastor Catholic
Secondary, Lewisham and the 12 years at Education Commission including
representing Arcdiocese on the National Diocesan School Commissioners
Executive for 6 years and representing the Catholic Education Service
on the School Support Staff Negotiating Body.
Mike is a parishioner of
Our Lady of Lourdes, Lee
continued in the Notre Dame RC Secondary Girls' School
in Southwark where Mike was presented, amongst other 'gifts' was his
own 'Section 48 Inspection Report'
Mike warmly thanked
everyone who had organised the event and everyone
for attending and all his
friends and colleagues for the last 42 years of happy memories.
He says his retirement plan is to carry on working for the Church in a
voluntary capacity in a different area to Education.
St Peter's Residence - Vauxhall
Archbishop Peter visted
and celebrated Mass at St Peter's Residence,
run by the Little Sisters of the Poor, in Vauxhall on the eve of the
feast of St Peter and St Paul
continued after in the grounds
Day for Catechists
The annual diocesan Day
for Catechists was held at St George’s
Cathedral and the Amigo Hall on Saturday 27th June, attended by over
200 catechists from throughout the diocese.
The initial talk on
‘Jesus Christ as Catechist’ was given by Sr
Hyacinthe Dufos Du Rau, OP.
were several workshops in the afternoon, ranging from using the Anchor
and Transformed in Christ programmes to The Significance of Baptism and
Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.
The day ended with Mass,
at which the Archbishop sent out the
catechists to catechize on his behalf.
Next year the Day for
Catechists will be held on
Saturday 24th September
to co-incide with the Jubilee Year Day for Catechists.
More information will be available on the website of the diocesan
Centre for Catholic Formation: www.ccftootingbec.org.uk
The Missionaries of St Paul of Nigeria
Jubilarian Mass - Brixton
The Missionaries of St
Paul held their annual celebration Mass on the
eve of the feast of St Peter and St Paul in Our Lady of the Rosary,
Brixton on 27th June 2015
Archbishop Peter was
delighted to be able to join them again this year
The mission of the
society to Europe started in the United Kingdom in
2000 when Fr. Addison Okpeh joined the Archdiocese of Southwark and was
appointed to the Cathedral parish as an assistant priest.
In 2002 Father Eustace Durugbo and Father Casmir Dike arrived to join
Father Addison in Southwark.
Over the years other
members of the congregation have come to work in
the Archdiocese of Southwark and to date the Missionaries of St Paul of
Nigeria are serving in six parishes: Brixton, which is their Provincial
House in the United Kingdom, Beckenham Hill and Bellingham, Deptford,
Norbiton, Gravesend, Stockwell, and Nunhead where Father Addison Okpeh
now works as the Parish Priest.
The current Provincial,
Father Eustace Durugbo MSP is serving as Parish
Priest in Our Lady of the Rosary, Brixton.
In addition a number of MSP priests have also worked as assistant
priests in a number of our parishes and as chaplains to Schools and
60th Anniversary of the Opening of
Our Lady of the Rosary School - Blackfen
A Mass to mark the 60th
Anniversary of the opening of Our Lady of the
Rosary School in Blackfen was celebrated in the school by Archbishop
Peter on 23rd June 2015
continued with Afternoon Tea for invited guests and an
exhibition of the school’s history
Confirmation in the Deanery of Thanet
Archbishop Peter Smith
confered the Sacrament of Confirmation on the
young people of the Deanery of Thanet on 21st June 2015
The parishes of
Birchington, Broadstairs, Cliftonville, Margate,
Ramsgate and Minster, Westgate join together for this celebration
6 Diocesan Medals awarded in Meopham
Sunday 28th June at St Paul's Church, Meopham, Father Paul Mason, the
Episcopal Vicar for Kent presented six people with the Diocesan Medal,
Fideliter Servienti, in celebration of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the
opening of the Church.
Everyone present was given a commemorative candle.
Please pray for the repose of the soul of
Reverend Canon John
who died on 18th June 2015
A Requiem Mass will take place on 6th July at 7pm
at The Parish of Christ the King, The
Crescent, Wimbledon Park, SW19
His Funeral Mass will be held on
Tuesday 7th July 2015 at 12noon
The Parish of Christ the King
The Crescent, Wimbledon Park, SW19
NB due to extremely limited parking in the area,
it is advisable to take public transport
The burial will take place in Ballaghaderreen, Co. Roscommon,
Futher details of the Mass and burial will be published shortly.
May he rest in
On Saturday, 20th June
2015, Archbishop Peter presided at the Annual Mass in Celebration of
Marriage at Saint George's Cathedral.
This Mass is celebrated
each year in the Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George for couples
celebrating their 1st, 10th, 25th, 40th and 50th + year of marriage.
All the faithful are welcome to attend but anniversarians who apply
before the event receive a personal invitation from the Archbishop.
Largest parish contingent:
Balham with 12 couples
Other large parish groups: Beckenham, Forest Hill and Tunbridge Wells
with 9 couples each
Longest married: Mr and Mrs Lang from Sidcup, 65 years married
Mr and Mrs Inkster from New Malden
Mr and Mrs Martin from Sidcup
Mr and Mrs Monteiro from Worcester Park, all at 64 yrs.
The parents of Father Liam Gallagher, parish priest of Streatham,
from Strood are celebrating their 60th anniversary
Father Liam also brought the altar servers from his parish.
This year there were bookings from 318 jubilarian couples,
i.e. 636 individuals, with 419 family members, giving a grand total of
Golden Jubilee - St John Fisher School - Chatham
On the 19th June 2015
Archbishop Peter Smith joined the community of
the St. John Fisher Catholic Comprehensive School in Chatham
to celebrate their Feast Day in their Golden Jubliee year
Catherine Burnett, said 'St
John Fisher staff and students were privileged to welcome Archbishop
Peter Smith to celebrate our 50th anniversary feast day with us.
day was one of celebration for a community who strives to embody the
vision of our patron saint in finding the extraordinary in every
Encyclical Letter: Laudato si' on
Care for our Common Home
Laudato si' - On the Care for our Common Home is the Pope's Encyclical
Letter on the environment and human ecology.
From the CBCEW
Pope Francis challenges us to consider the kind of world
we want to
leave to those who come after us. It's not just an 'environment
encyclical', it leads us to ask ourselves about the meaning of
existence and the values at the heart of social life: "What is the
purpose of our life in this world? What is the goal of our work and all
our efforts? What need does the earth have of us?"
Pope Francis, quoting Pope Saint John Paul II, reminds us that, as
Christians, we are called to be responsible custodians of creation:
"Christians in their turn ‘realise that their responsibility within
creation, and their duty towards nature and the Creator, are an
essential part of their faith’".
The Encyclical is divided into six chapters.
It starts by presenting the current situation based on the best
scientific findings available today (Chapter one), followed by a review
of the Bible and Judeo-Christian tradition (Chapter 2).
The root of the problems in technocracy and in an excessive
self-centeredness of human being are analysed in Chapter 3.
In Chapter 4, the Encyclical then proposes an “integral ecology, which
clearly respects its human and social dimensions”, inextricably linked
to the environmental question.
With this in mind, Pope Francis proposes to initiate an honest dialogue
at every level of social, economic and political life, that builds
transparent decision-making processes (Chapter 5).
In the final chapter, recalling that no project can be effective if it
is not animated by a formed and responsible conscience, ideas are put
forth to aid growth in this direction at the educational, spiritual,
ecclesial, political and theological levels.
The text ends with two prayers. One offered for sharing with everyone
who believes in “God who is the all powerful Creator”, and the other to
those who profess faith in Jesus Christ, punctuated by the refrain
"Praise be to you!" which opens and closes the Encyclical.
Several central themes run through the text that are addressed from a
variety of different perspectives, thus traversing and unifying the
- the intimate relationship between the poor and the
fragility of the
- the conviction that everything in the world is connected
- the critique of new paradigms and forms of power derived
- the call to seek other ways of understanding the economy
- the value proper to each creature
- the human meaning of ecology
- the need for forthright and honest debate
- the serious responsibility of international and local
- the throwaway culture and the proposal of a new lifestyle
You can download a 10-page PDF summary that will guide you
through an initial reading of the Encyclical and the full Encyclical
Laudato si' by using the links below or to the right of this article.
Laudato si' 556.55
Laudato si' -
Summary 223.57 kB
If you want to buy a hard copy of Laudato si', you can pre-order from
the Catholic Truth Society.
Click to purchase
Centenary Mass at Northfleet
On Sunday 14th June 2015
joined the parish of Northfleet to celebrate Centenary of the first
Mass to be said in the 'new church'
Concelebrating Mass with
Archbishop Peter was Monsignor Matthew Dickens, Vicar General and
former parish priest of Northfleet, Father Robert Ellis, present parish
priest and assisting at Mass was Deacon Tom Berry
The celebratons continued
in St Joseph's Primary School
Our Deacons renewed their commitment
On June 13th 2015 38 of our
Deacons renewed their commitment to the Diaconate at their annual
celebration at the Cathedral
This Diocesan Diaconal Day Archbishop Peter confered Candidacy
Carlos Lozano (Lewisham), Garry Cullen (Bromley), Oluwole Alayo
(Plumstead), Tony Wentworth (Plumstead), Paul Said (Sutton Green) and
Antonio Almeida (Portugese Chaplaincy)
After lunch the day concluded with a question and answer session with
Archbishop Peter in Amigo Hall
Archbishop Peter vists The Cedars School - Purley
Archbishop Peter visted The
Cedars School in Purely and concelebrated Mass in the New Chapel on
Friday 12th June 2015
Also present were Reverend
Father Jorge Boronat and Monsignor Nicholas Morrish, the Regional Vicar
of Opus Dei for Great Britain since 1998
Anthony’s Primary School - Anerley
On Thursday 11th June
Peter visited St Anthony's Primary School to bless the new library and
The day began with a school
Mass in St. Anthony of Padua Church
The Archbishop then blessed
new library and offices
And ended the day with a
prayer with the children
St Patrick - Waterloo Centenary Mass
On Wednesday 10th June
Archbishop Peter joiin the community of St Patrick - Waterloo to
celebrate 100 years of the parish being established
Archbishop Peter Smith was Custos - Father Peter Damian OFM Conv., St
Priest Father David Young OFM Conv., Father Jesmond Pawley OFM
Conv., Father Mario Sant OFM Conv. and Father Stephen Borg OFM Conv.
After Mass the celebrations continued in the parish hall
Bishop Pat confers Ministries Diaconal Candidates
At Beckenham Hill and
Bellingham on 5
June Bishop Pat conferred the ministry of Lector on Fidelis Iwu
(Beckenham Hill), Paul Henshaw (Beckenham Hill), Amgad Gerges (Forest
Hill) and Roland Gooding (Westerham), and the ministry of Acolyte on
Ged Perkins (Norbury).
This Saturday (13 June)
Archbishop Peter will confer Candidacy on Carlos Lozano (Lewisham),
Garry Cullen (Bromley), Oluwole Alayo (Plumstead), Tony Wentworth
(Plumstead), Paul Said (Sutton Green) and Antonio Almeida (Portugese
On 4 July His Grace will ordain four men to the Permanent Diaconate,
Simon English (Tooting Bec), Tom McCarthy (Tooting Bec), Julian Burling
(Wimbledon) and Peter Sebastian (Surbiton).
Two other ministries have been, or will be, conferred within the
diocese. On 15 May James Joice Pallickamyalil was institute as Acolyte
(sub deacon) in the Syro Malabar rite Bishop Sebastian Vadakel and on
21 June Robert Smith (Westerham) will be instituted as an Acolyte in
the Ordinariate by Mgr Keith Newton.
Institute of St. Anselm’s 30th Anniversary
On May 29th 2015 the
Institute of St. Anselm celebrated 30 years of service to the world
wide Church. The main celebrant was Archbishop Peter Smith
years the Institute of Saint Anselm have provided
the special training that formators, leaders, evangelists and others
charged with the sacred task of supporting and nourishing the spiritual
life of the members of their congregations, dioceses and parishes need
to best fulfil their duties.
The Institute’s fully
experiential courses in Community and Pastoral
Leadership have helped many thousands of religious leaders gain or
enhance the skills necessary to carry out the complex and demanding
task of guiding their community’s life and interaction.
Father Len Kofler MHM
founded the Institute of St. Anselm in 1984 under
Cardinal Basil Hume OSB.
Father Len is a Mill Hill Missionary who is also an accredited
psychotherapist, group psychotherapist, supervisor and trainer. He was
ordained in 1959 and in 1968 he took up further studies in sociology,
psychology and pastoral theology and was in charge of formation at a
In 1978 he joined the staff of the Missionary
Institute London as a lecturer and in 1980 he was elected president and
continued to lecture and counsel till July 1985. He also gave lectures
for London University Extra Mural Department.
In 2009 he
celebrated his Golden Jubilee of Ordination.
5th Bishop of Arundel and Brighton
The installation of
Bishop Richard Moth as the 5th Bishop of Arundel
& Brighton took place during Mass in Arundel Cathedral, Arundel
on Thursday 28th May 2015 at 3pm
Archbishop Peter who has
been acting as the Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Arundel
& Brighton led the Installation.
Also present were Archbishop Antonio Mennini, The Apostolic Nunciture,
Cardinals Nichols and
Murphy-O’Connor together with 21 other Bishops
from England and Wales, the Abbot of Worth, Fr Luke Jolly OSB and the
Bishop of Aberdeen, Hugh Gilbert, former Abbot of Pluscarden where
Bishop Richard is an oblate.
There were over 170 priests from the
Diocese of Arundel & Brighton, Forces Chaplains, the
Archdiocese of Southwark, and elsewhere. Also 30 or more
Deacons and members from other faiths.
There were representatives from
every parish and Catholic school in the Diocese of Arundel &
Brighton and members of the Armed Forces.
In his homily Bishop Richard says of the event: "For this is a great
day – the 50th Anniversary of the very day on which this Diocese of
Arundel & Brighton was established. It is a real privilege and,
I believe, a grace that this should be the day of my Installation as
your 5th Bishop. As on Easter Day, we can say: ‘This is the Day the
Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad’."
After Mass the celebrations continued in Arundel Castle by kind
permission of His Grace the Duke of Norfolk
Bishop Patrick conferred the Sacrament of Confirmation at
Beckenham Hill and Bellingham
On the 25th May 2015 Bishop Patrick Lynch confirmed 11 young people
from the parish of Beckenham Hill and Bellingham
After the service the
celebrations continued in the parish Hall
Archdiocesan Centre for Catholic Formation
Evangelization and Catechesis in
the mission of the Church
ADVISER for DISABILITY,
CATECHESIS & ADULT
Applications are invited
from practising Catholics for appointment in
September. This full-time post is open to those with suitable
experience and qualifications in the fields of evangelization, lay
formation and parish catechesis, as well as disability inclusion.
The person appointed will work as a member of the CCF Team and will
contribute to the ongoing work of the Centre for Catholic Formation in
its role as the diocesan agency for evangelization, catechesis and
adult faith formation. The person appointed will have particular
responsibility for disability issues and for the South-east London
Closing date for applications: midnight on Sunday 28th June 2015
Interviews: Monday 6th July 2015
Further details of the post, together with an application form, are
Fr David Gibbons, Director
Centre for Catholic Formation
21 Tooting Bec Road
London SW17 8BS
Telephone: 020 8672 7684
Holy Ghost Fathers (Spiritans) to move from Bickley
Every year the Holy
Fathers celebrate an open air Mass in the grounds of their house in
Bickley at Pentecost.
This year they were
joined by Archbishop Peter and 35
Spiritans, local clergy, deacons and 300 of their "extended
family" of supporters in a farewell
celebration marking their 68th and final year in
The Bickley community
dates back to 1947 when the property was
purchased as the Provincial Administration and a centre for ‘late
Vocations'. It welcomed ex-servicemen who wished to be missionary
priests and brothers. The ‘late Vocations' centre closed in the early
60's and the Community continued to serve as the Provincial
Administration centre until this was transferred to north west London
in 1990. Then the building was adapted to be more practical for the
care of our increasingly elderly members. The community is now moving
to Chester later in the year
The Mass was followed by
food and drinks for all, a presentation and
live music added to the huge success of the celebration
Confirmation at the Cathedral
On Pentecost Sunday,
24th May 2015, Archbishop Peter conferred the Sacrament of Confirmation
on 23 young people and 1 adult of the Cathedral parish.
Father Richard Hearn and
Father Oladele Craig join the Archbishop in the celebratons
Good Shepherd Schools' Service - Aylesford
On Wednesday 20th May
2015 over 1200 pupils from 30 schools from around
the diocese joined Archbishop Peter Smith, Canon James Cronin and
supports of Missio, to celebrate the Good Shepherd Schools' Service in
During this service prayers were said for children in the
poorest areas of the world and gifts were presented by the children
which will go to carry out educational, medical and welfare projects
supported by Mission Together.
The children had been asked to put a prayer or reflection on the words
of Jesus 'As my Father has sent me, so I am sending you' and
these were exhanged with each other - sharing their Faith.
Mission Together, part of Missio, encourages children in England and
Wales to pray, fundraise and become missionaries themselves - Children
This year they are supporting the Daughters of Charity in Cambodia and
two sisters from the Daughters of Charity were present at the
day to receive the gifts.
Archbishop Peter said of the day:
“It was marvellous to see so many school pupils coming together for
this Mission Together service, truly reflecting the principle of
‘children helping children’. The talents of the children here, in their
singing, dance and drama, helped all of us in our prayer, and the
generous gifts, fruit of their fundraising efforts, will, I am sure,
help other children in the poorest areas of the world.”
Last year the Archdiocese of Southwark raised over £15,000 for Missio
CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR JUBILARIANS
On Tuesday, 19th May
2015, at the Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George, Archbishop
Peter presided at a Mass in thanksgiving for the many years of ministry
of those who are celebrating significant anniversaries
of their ordinations to priesthood and diaconate.
The Mass was followed by a
lunch in the dining room of Archbishop's House for the cergy and their
Please pray for our Jubilarians
Reverend Seamus Hetherton
Reverend Charles Corrigan,
Reverend Piet Wijngaard, O.Carm.
Reverend Canon John Naughton
Reverend Josef Doetsch
Reverend Brian Maxwell
Reverend Sean Hearty
Reverend Canon John McNamara
Reverend Terence Donnelly, CSSp
Reverend Desmond Doherty
Reverend John Henry
Reverend Joseph O'Connor
Reverend Canon Anthony Charlton
Reverend Gregory Griffiths
Reverend Monsignor Canon Jeremy Garrett
Reverend Michael Lovell
Reverend Andrew Southwell
Reverend Victor Darlington
Reverend Eustace Durugbo, MSP
Reverend Deacon Alan Boxall
Reverend Deacon Stephen Short
Justice, Peace & Integrity of Creation
The JPIC office at the
Diocese of Southwark is looking for a new
co-ordinator. Based at Cathedral House in Westminster Bridge Road, this
job is responsible for all the administration associated with the
promotion of JPIC issues. This will include servicing all diocesan
groups in their JPIC work through research, presentations and the
production of materials; maintaining the JPIC database and website;
producing the JPIC newsletter and other reports; liaising with and
promoting associated bodies and networks and arranging conferences and
other events. This is a part-time job, for around 21.5 hours per week.
Actual hours/days are flexible and will include some evening and
weekend work. Salary £27,000pa to £30,000pa, depending on experience,
pro rata for part-time hours.
The ideal candidate will have a deep, personal commitment
to the principles of justice and peace and a sound knowledge of social
teaching in the Catholic Church. They will be fully competent with
general office IT systems such as databases, email and Word. In
addition they will be confident working with the minimum of supervision
and able to demonstrate both initiative and creativity.
If you would like to apply,
please email your CV to
by the closing date of 12th June 2015.
Please note that we can only accept applications from candidates who
have current permission to work in the UK.
Evangelization Seminar 1
The first in a series of
Evangelization Seminars was held on Saturday 16th May at the Centre for
Catholic Formation in Tooting Bec. The subject was ‘Spreading the Good
News as an Encounter with Jesus Christ’, and the seminar was led by
John Huntriss, Scripture Advisor for the Clifton diocese. The seminar
was very fruitful, and many parishes from across the diocese were
The next Evangelization
Seminar is on Saturday 4th July at St Francis
de Sales, Stockwell, on the theme ‘Spreading the Good News through
Justice & Peace’, led by members of the diocesan Justice
Peace Commission. Visit the CCF website (click on the logo on the
right) for further information.
Mass for New Catholics
The annual Mass for New
Catholics took place on Saturday 9th May at the Metropolitan Cathedral
Church of St George. The Archbishop was the Principal Celebrant and
This Mass - which is
organised by the diocesan Centre for Catholic Formation - is the
culmination of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)
process, and ends the third and final period of the RCIA, which is
called the ‘Period of Postbaptismal Catechesis or Mystagogy’.
Mass the neophytes, that is those who have recently become Catholics,
come together to give thanks to God and to meet the Archbishop, who is
the chief pastor of the diocese.
Archbishop Peter Smith blesses new
Sheerness seafarers’ centre
Archbishop of Southwark, The Most Reverend Peter Smith has launched and
blessed a newly-refurbished centre for seafarers at the port of
Sheerness in Kent.
The facility, operated by Catholic seafarers’ charity Apostleship of
the Sea (AoS), is a sanctuary where visiting seafarers can spend quiet
time in prayer, use the WiFi service to contact their families back
home or relax with a game of pool.
Archbishop Smith said, “The centre is a great service to seafarers who
are all welcomed here. It is a service the church provides and it has
been blessed over the years by God’s grace. We ask God’s blessing for
the future work of this centre.”
Archbishop Smith who is also Vice President of the Catholic Bishops'
Conference of England and Wales said his grandfather on his father’s
side was a shipwright in Bristol, so the sea ran in his family’s genes.
“The ministry of AoS is great work and it’s done quietly,” he added at
the opening ceremony held yesterday.
The restoration of the seafarers centre was made possible by a £4,130
grant by the Merchant Navy Welfare Board (MNWB). Each year about 5,000
ships visit ports in the Medway, which includes Sheerness Docks, with
about 80,000 seafarers on board.
MNWB chairman Bob Jones who was also present at the launch said, “We
are delighted to support Stella Maris (AoS) in the work you do for
seafarers’ welfare both in UK and around the world.” AoS’ port chaplain
for Kent and Medway, Deacon Paul Glock said, “The Apostleship of the
Sea is about not taking seafarers for granted, but making them feel
welcome and appreciated and this is their little home.”
Paul and his team of ship visiting volunteers go on board ships
to visit seafarers in Chatham, Dover Port, Gillingham Pier, Rochester,
Sheerness Docks and Whitstable Harbour. These ports are all in
Many of the seafarers arriving at Sheerness and those other ports are
Catholic, originating from countries such as Philippines, Poland and
the centre, AoS is able to provide them with pastoral and practical
care. It is equipped with faith resources like scripture booklets and
prayer cards. The centre offers them a space to speak to Deacon Paul,
who provides a listening ear.
On rare occasions when ships are in port long enough the centre is also
used as a meeting point for seafarers who wish to be taken to Mass.
It also offers amenities for them to communicate with family by
internet or phone and space to relax before moving on to their next
port of call.
Commissioning of Extraordinary Ministers
Holy Communion at
The Friars, Aylesford
On Saturday 2nd May 2015
Father Paul Mason, Episcopal Vicar for Kent, and Monsignor Matthew
Dickens, Vicar General, led the Commissioning Day.
Father Paul Mason -
Episcopal Vicar for Kent, started the day with a talk on the Eucharist
and this special Ministry by using a powerpoint presentation of
different works or art
Dickens presided at a period of adoration before the
After lunch Monsignor
Matthew spoke of the role of the Extraordinary
Minister and the rubrics, including the service of administering Holy
Communion to the Sick and the checks that need to be taken before
staring this ministry and so therefore bringing together all the
training that had been given in every parish
Father Paul presided at
the Mass along with the other concelebrants Monsignor Matthew Dickens,
Fathers Christopher Lindlar and Josephat Ezeanolue CSSp (who was
celebrating his birthday) and Deacon Malcolm Turner, during which he
commissioned the new Extraordinary Ministers and presented their
21 Extraordinary Ministers
of Holy Communion were commissioned from Beckenham Hill and Bellingham,
Catford, Charlton, Folkestone West,
Forest Hill, Hartley, Kidbrooke, Mongeham and Sandwich, Rochester,
Sevenoaks,Tenterden,Tolworth, West Malling, Westerham and 1 from St
Mary's Primary School, Beckenham
Migrants Mass on Feast of St Joseph the Worker
On Monday 4th May 2015
over 1,500 people came to the Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St
George in Southwark for the annual Mass for Migrants, organised by
London's three Catholic dioceses: Brentwood, Southwark and Westminster,
with the ethnic chaplaincies and Justice and Peace Commission, and the
year the Tablet, which celebrates its 175th anniversary.
The chief celebrant was the Archbishop of Southwark, Most Reverend
Peter Smith. Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster,
Bishop Alan Williams of Brentwood and many priests concelebrated.
The Mass was attended by ambassadors from Libya, Ethiopia and
Lithuania, Justice Minister, Lib Dem Simon Hughes, who has served as MP
for Southwark and Bermondsey for many years, Lib Dem Sarah Teather who
led a campaign to stop the detention of child refugees, borough mayors
and councillors, from around the capital.
Music throughout the service, led by Francis Novillo, included hymns
and songs from Cameroon, the USA, Australia, Slovakia, China and Uganda.
The Bidding Prayers were led by pupils from Notre Dame RC Girls' School
in seven languages, including Tamil, Tagalog and Yoruba
Welcoming the congregation, Archbishop Peter Smith described the Mass
as "a joint venture of prayerful support for migrants in our city." In
his homily, Archbishop Peter reflected on the day's Gospel in which
Jesus is rejected by the people of his hometown of Nazareth. He
described how the Holy Family were refugees - forced to flee Bethlehem
when Herod began killing new born baby boys: "We have few details but
we assume they lived in peace until they returned to their homeland,
settling, as St Matthew's Gospel tells us, in a town called Nazareth.
Jesus would have been very small when they left but I'm sure Mary and
Joseph would have told him the story as he got older. The irony of his
rejection by the people he lived with I'm sure would have been in his
mind when he began his public ministry. Rejected by the people he lived
with but in the years previous to that accepted in a foreign land."
Archbishop Peter pointed out that Jesus' public ministry it has its
core focus compassion, loving kindness and mercy - care towards the
oppressed, the exploited, the poor. He said Pope Francis has repeatedly
called for countries to adopt a more "generous openness" to migrants,
saying: "I am a pastor of a Church with no borders."
Archbishop Peter quoted Pope Francis who had rebuked those with "blood
on their hands" who tolerate, even passively, human trafficking.
Archbishop Peter had particular criticism of the UK's detention centres
for migrants, saying these were "stripping them of their human dignity"
and he expressed alarm at the crisis of boat refugees in the
Archbishop Peter went on to call for prayers for politicians. "We must
pray for them" he said. "They have a very difficult job."
He concluded with an upbeat story of British Olympic runner Mo Farrah
who came from Somalia as a refugee at the age of eight. Asked whether
he would prefer to run for Somalia rather than Britain, Mo said: " Look
mate - this is my country. When I put on my GB vest I feel proud."
After the Mass there was a large reception and spread of international
food organised by the ethnic chaplaincies and the Tablet.
The Mass for Migrants has been celebrated in London every May Bank
Holiday since 2006 when it was introduced by the then Archbishop of
Westminster, Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor.
Words - Jo Siedlecka
Photos by Marcin Mazur
Vocation Sunday in West Croydon
As part of the year of Consecrated Life the parish of West Croydon
celebrated Vocations Sunday with life size images of Pope Francis and
Pope Benedict on the sanctuary to encourage parishioners to pray for
vocations to Priesthood and all other vocations
There was also a two
week display of a life size nun and brother where
people could put their own face through the head to remind people of
the variety of vocations
The parishioners also made banner and there was a choice of literature
The whole undertaking was
very successful and a lot interest was shown
Beckenham Hill and Bellingham Parish
raise funds for their church roof
The Union of
Catholic Mothers in The Annunciation and St. Augustine church Beckenham
Hill and Bellingham Parish organised a day fun to raise funds for the
Bishop Patrick Lynch visited Beckenham Hill and Bellingham
Parish for Divine Mercy Sunday
On Sunday 12th April Bishop
Patrick concelebated Mass with Father Mark Odien assisted by Deacon
After Mass Bishop Pat greeted the parishioners
BULL OF INDICTION
OF THE EXTRAORDINARY
JUBILEE OF MERCY
Pope Francis pronounced a
Holy Year, with the focus on mercy, during a penitential servcie at St
Holy Year will open on 8 December 2015, the Solemnity of the Immaculate
Conception. This liturgical feast day recalls God’s action from the
very beginning of the history of mankind. After the sin of Adam and
Eve, God did not wish to leave humanity alone in the throes of evil. So
he turned his gaze to Mary, holy and immaculate in love (cf. Eph 1:4),
choosing her to be the Mother of man’s Redeemer. When faced with the
gravity of sin, God responds with the fullness of mercy. Mercy will
always be greater than any sin, and no one can place limits on the love
of God who is ever ready to forgive. I will have the joy of opening the
Holy Door on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. On that day,
the Holy Door will become a Door of Mercy through which anyone who
enters will experience the love of God who consoles, pardons, and
Jubilee year will close with the liturgical Solemnity of Christ the
King on 20 November 2016. On that day, as we seal the Holy Door, we
shall be filled, above all, with a sense of gratitude and thanksgiving
to the Most Holy Trinity for having granted us an extraordinary time of
grace. We will entrust the life of the Church, all humanity, and the
entire cosmos to the Lordship of Christ, asking him to pour out his
mercy upon us like the morning dew, so that everyone may work together
to build a brighter future. How much I desire that the year to come
will be steeped in mercy, so that we can go out to every man and woman,
bringing the goodness and tenderness of God! May the balm of mercy
reach everyone, both believers and those far away, as a sign that the
Kingdom of God is already present in our midst!''
Photos of the announcement
can be accesed via the [Multimedia]
link on the full text of the Bull of Indiction
Most Rev. Fr. Fernando Millán Romeral, O.Carm., visited the
National Shrine of Saint Jude, Faversham
On 26 March 2015 the Prior General of the Carmelite Order, Most Rev.
Fr. Fernando Millán Romeral, O.Carm., visited the National Shrine of
Saint Jude, Faversham to officially launch their diamond jubilee. He
attended with the Councillor General for Europe, Very Rev. Fr. John
Keating. The National Shrine is looked after by the British Province of
the Carmelites. During the morning, Fr. Fernando and Fr. John met the
community at Faversham, and then the team at the Shrine Office, so that
they could see the work of the Apostolate. Afterwards, they were taken
on a tour of the Shrine.
In the afternoon, Fr. Fernando celebrated Mass for the community and
lay staff in front of the beautiful sixteenth century statue of Saint
Jude. Fr. Fernando launched the diamond jubilee by thanking all the
Pilgrims who have supported and visited the Shrine since 1955. Fr.
Fernando noted that the Carmelite Order are very proud of the work of
the Shrine, the community and lay staff. He then unveiled a plaque to
celebrate the start of the diamond jubilee and his visit. On his
departure, Fr. Fernando was given a gift of a statue of Saint Jude and
Life Membership of the Guild of Saint Jude. Fr Michael Manning,
Chaplain, said: “It was a truly joyous occasion and Fr. Fernando
thoroughly enjoyed his visit to our special Shrine”. Mr Matt Betts,
Development Manager remarked: “The National Shrine of Saint Jude is
rightly proud of its 60 years of ministry and we are very pleased that
Fr. Fernando has started our celebrations off. We are looking forward
to seeing pilgrims at our Summer Celebration on 30 May 2015, when
celebrations will continue – all welcome”.
Mass of Welcome for Parochial Administrator
for West Norwood
On the 21st March Bishop Patrick Lynch presided at a Mass of welcome
for Father Anthony Cassidy CSsR as Parochial Administrator for St
Matthew - West Norwood
Ordination of Keith Sylvia to the Priesthood
On 14th March 2015
Archbishop Peter ordained Keith Sylvia to the priesthood at the Church
of Our Lady of the Annunciation, Addiscombe
Father Keith had been a priest in the Church of England for twenty four
before he, his wife Jacqueline and the family became Catholics in 2013.
Keith exercised his diaconate ministry in Addiscombe since November and
has now been appointed there as Assistant Priest. Fr. Joe O'Connor and
the parishioners have welcomed Fr. Keith very warmly and he and
Jacqueline have already made a great contribution to the life of the
The parishioners turned out in great numbers for the Ordination
celebration and Keith was also well supported by family and friends.
Archbishop Peter Smith
celebrated the 10am Easter Sunday Mass at the Metropolitan Cathedral
Church of St George with Father Richard Hearn, Dean of the Cathedral
and Father Philip Smith, Assistant Priest of the Cathedral
After Mass Archbishop
distributed Easter Eggs to the children
On Holy Saturday, 4th
April 2015, Archbishop Peter presided at the Easter Vigil at the
Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George with Father Richard Hearn,
Dean of the Cathedral, Father Philip Smith, Father Oladele Craig,
Father Stephen Haines and Father Thomas Bakulumpagi where baptised two
adults and one child
The Archbishop and all the
Cathedral Clergy greeted the congregation after Mass
RENEWAL OF ORDINATION
In this most holy of weeks the Chrism Mass provides us with a moment to
gather as a diocese – bishop, clergy and people – to support and pray
for one another, to remember and pray for the people of our diocese and
At the Chrism Mass
priests of the diocese renew the promises they first made at
ordination. As they gather with members of the faithful of the diocese
they make their public commitment to the service of God, the Church and
its people once more. The deacons and the people in turn offer their
prayerful support of their priests and to the Archbishop.
THE BLESSING AND CONSECRATION OF OILS
the Oil of the Sick, used for those who seek the anointing, and the Oil
of the Catechumens, used for those preparing for baptism, are simply
“blessed,” the Sacred Chrism is “consecrated”. All the priests present
participate in the latter moment by extending their hands toward the
vessel containing it as the bishop says the prayer of consecration.
Oil of Chrism is used at baptisms, confirmations, the ordination of
priests and bishops, the consecration of altars and the blessing of
churches, where the walls are smeared with it in the shape of the sign
of the cross.
As part of the consecration of the Chrism, balsam is poured into the
oil, which gives it a sweet smell intended to remind those who
encounter it of the “odour of sanctity” to which those people and
things who are marked with it, and by extension all of us, are called
to strive for.
Chrism Mass is the largest regular diocesan celebration held during the
year. In this liturgy priests, deacons and people gather with the
Archbishop for the blessing of the holy oils that will be used in
parishes in the coming year – the oil of the sick, the oil of
Catechumens and the oil of Chrism, from which the Mass receives its
A New Dean for
The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George
On Friday 20th March 2015 Archbishop Peter Smith inducted Father
Richard Hearn as the next dean of the Cathedral
The celebrations continued in Amigo Hall after mass
Mothers' Day at Beckenham Hill and Bellingham
The Catholic Union of Mothers in Beckenham Hill and Bellingham led the
celebrations for Mothering Sunday
15th March 2015
The celebrations contiuned in the parish hall after the Mass
'24 Hours for the Lord' - 13th March and 14th March
"Let us not underestimate the
power of so many voices united in prayer! The 24 Hours for the Lord
initiative, which I hope will be observed on 13-14 March throughout the
Church, also at the diocesan level, is meant to be a sign of this need
for prayer." (Pope Francis)
The Holy Father has invited Catholics throughout the world to
participate in this evangelizing event, by opening churches where
possible, offering Confessions and Eucharistic Adoration.
At St George’s Cathedral there was Adoration all Friday
afternoon, and adoration will continue after the Saturday
9.30am morning Mass until just before the start of the 12.30pm
Mass. For information about this events in the parishes of the
diocese, please visit the Newsletter pages of Parish websites (see
for links to Parish websites).
Over 900 young people from
the Diocese of Southwark, organised by the Southwark Catholic Youth
Service, joined over 10,000
other young people to attend Flame 2 at Wembley Arena on 7th
It is thought to be the biggest Catholic Youth Event
ever event in the UK
The day of prayer, reflection and celebration included talks
Cardinal Luis Tagle, who has frequently spoken to many thousands at the
Los Angeles RE Congress on a rare visit to the UK.
Sheila Hollins, past President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists
and President of the British Medical Association, who specialises in
working with young people who are themselves suffering with anxiety, or
accompanying friends who are in need; and Father Timothy Radcliffe OP,
the inspirational Dominican speaker and writer who was named by young
people at Flame 2012 as the speaker with the greatest impact.
The music was led by Grammy award winning artist Matt Redman and David
Wells, Director of Adult Formation and Youth Ministry in the
Diocese of Plymouth was the MC this year.
Cardinal Luis Tagle celebrated Mass at the Metropolitan Cathedral
Church of St George on Sunday 8th March
Photo by Ms K Endozo
Cardinal Luis Tagle with
Archbishop Peter, Father Richard Hearn, the Dean of the Cathedral,
Father Philip Smith, Father Stephen Haines, Father Thomas Bakulumpagi,
Father Dermott Donnelly, Chair of CYMFED and John Toryusen,
Chair of CYMFED and Director of the Southwark Catholic Youth Service
Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation grant for
St Augustine's Centre - Ramsgate
The Andrew Lloyd Webber
Foundation announced a £25,000 grant award
yesterday, for the proposed project for a Pugin and St Augustine
Education, Research, and Visitor Centre at St Augustine's in Ramsgate.
are the 16th grant giving organisation to support the Restoration and
proposed Centre. Over 400 people who have generously donated to the
project so far.
Fr Marcus Holden, Rector at St Augustines, said: "This
project is locally driven, but it is a project that has a national
importance. The things you see here inspired the architecture of a
nation, Parliament was inspired by Ramsgate. We are very grateful for
the donation from the Andrew Lloyd Webber Fund and for Lord Lloyd
Webber's personal interest and support for our project.
"It takes us one step nearer towards the church's restoration and the
setting up of a centre for Pugin inside the church."
Father Marcus Holden, Councillor Iris Johnston, Leader of Thanet
District Council, Chris Maton of Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, Robert
Pugin Purcell on behalf of the Pugin family and Clive Aslet, Editor at
Large of Country Life Magazine - Picture: Marie Muscat-King
than 100 guests representing grant giving organisations and supporters
attended Monday's reception. They heard speeches in support of the St
Augustine's project from Clive Aslet, Editor at Large of Country Life
Magazine, Cllr Iris Johnston, Leader of Thanet District Council and
Robert Pugin Purcell on behalf of the Pugin family.
event was hosted by Fr Marcus Holden, Rector of St Augustine's church
in Ramsgate, the burial place of its great architect, Augustus Welby
Pugin. St Augustine's has made a second round application for Heritage
The cost of the project for a centre is likely to be just over
90th Anniversary of
in Great Britain
The National Catholic
Scout Fellowship (NCSF) had a special Mass to
celebrate 90 years at The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St
George on Sunday 1st March 2015
All Scouts, Guides,
Beavers and Cubs were invited to join them. The
was celebrated by Bishop Richard Moth, the Bishop for Scouting.
Sadly Father John Seddon, the National Chaplain to Catholic Scouts, who
was to have been
present died Friday 27th February 2015.
Many awards were
presented after Mass by Margaret McDowall, former Manager and Bishop
There was refreshments and a display of merchandise from the NCSF
in Amigo Hall afterwards.
Blue Plaque for the Aylesford Pottery
On Friday 20th February,
a Blue Plaque was unveiled in memory of David Leach OBE, the
famous international potter, who founded the Aylesford pottery in 1954
at the Friars.
The plaque was unveiled by John Leach, one of David’s sons. In his
speech John mentioned that he had began his craft at Aylesford and
worked alongside Bro. Michael. John Leach recalled that one day Fr.
Machaly, the first Prior of Aylesford, asked him to make only “holy
pots”. He was taught by his grandfather, Bernard Leach, and his father,
David Leach, that every pot should be made with integrity and for him
they became holy. A potter must work with passion. As you can see with
some of the great artist who worked here in the shrine.
The ceremony was attended by our local MP, the leader of Kent County
Council and the leader of Tonbridge and Malling Council.
This is only the eighth blue plaque to be unveiled by Tonbridge and
Malling Council and the first outside of Tonbridge.
Rite of Election & Call to Continuing Conversion
Cathedral Church of St George was once again packed on Saturday 21st
February for the annual ceremony for adults to be Baptised or Received
into the Church at Easter. The Rite of Election enrols the
catechumens - those to be Baptised - in the Book of the Elect.
The Rite of the Call to
Continuing Conversion is for those known as candidates who have
previously been Baptized, and whose Christian initiation will be
completed with Confirmation and First Eucharist.
Each of the 437 stood when their name was read out
The Archbishop presided,
accompanied by the Area Bishops, Bishops Pat
and Paul and Episcopal Vicar for Kent, Father Paul Mason who presented
the catechumens and candidates, along with Father David Gibbons,
Director of the Centre for Catholic Formation
The liturgy was organised by the CCF, in conjunction
with the Cathedral
authorities and the diocesan choir under Canon Alan McLean.
The Archbishop and
clergy congratulated the catechumens and candidates
RC Archdiocese of Southwark Archives
Our Diocesan Archivist,
Jenny Delves, has written the first entry on the Archives' blog.
She hopes to update this every two months or so.
Jenny can be contacted on
Phone: 020 7928 5592
Address: RC Archdiocese of Southwark, Archbishop's House, 150 St
George's Road, London SE1 6HX
Induction of the Parish Priest of Thanet
Saturday 14th February at Our Lady & St Benedict, Birchington,
Parish Church of The Holy Family - Thanet, Canon David Caine was
inducted as Parish Priest by Father. Paul Mason, Episcopal Vicar for
Father Paul was the principal celebrant, together with Canon David,
Father Philip Seed, Dean of Thanet Catholic Deanery, and Father Don
Coleman, retired former Parish Priest in Birchington.
The Chairman of Birchington Parish Council, vicars Fatherom the
Anglican churches in Birchington and Westgate-on-Sea, the United
Reformed Church minister - where the parish has a Mass Centre, and the
head teachers of the Ursuline College Westgate and St Gregory's Primary
School Margate attended the Induction Mass.
The celebration contiuned
in the Parish Hall
The Clergy Support Fund Campaign
Archbishop Peter has
identified the needs of our sick and retired priests as a priority for
the Diocese. We all want the best for our own family and as part of the
family of the Church, our priests deserve our support as they enter a
new chapter in their lives.
Over the coming year it is the aim of the Campaign to offer every
parishioner in Southwark Diocese the opportunity to find out more with
a view to lending their support. The first step in this process is
sharing the need and with the help of priests and enthusiastic laity
across the Diocese, the Campaign Team are providing training sessions
for all voluntary Parish Representatives who will eventually explain
the need to their own parishioners. We have been overwhelmed by the
generosity of support and are pleased to share some photographs from
our most recent Information and Training event for Parish
Representatives in Mortlake Deanery, which took place at the end of
Frances Mulligan, our
South West Area Leader, has worked on the Campaign since its
instigation in Croydon Deanery. Along with Deanery Lay-leaders and the
Campaign Team, she regularly provides training for new Parish
Volunteers come from a number of different backgrounds: we are
particularly keen to hear from those with presenting, technology,
hospitality and organisational skills.
A strong network of clergy and laity are working together to deliver
the Campaign. There are plenty of opportunities to share experiences
and enjoy some fellowship.
The Campaign Office supplies Parish Representatives with a variety of
resources and materials, including information booklets, training
guidance handbooks, films, presentations and a website from which they
can download a variety of additional resources.
Further Information and Training events are due to take place in
Sutton, Kingston, Tonbridge Wells, Chatham, Bexley, Camberwell and
Wandsworth Deaneries prior to Easter. If you are interested in becoming
a Parish Representative, please speak to your Parish Priest in the
To find out further information about the Campaign please visit our
The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George
goodbye to its Canon
On Friday 13th February
2015 Canon John O'Toole was invited back to the Cathedral for a farwell
family, friends, parishioners and colleagues joined the staff
of the Catheral to say farwell and thanks to Canon John as he continues
in his new role as the National Ecumenical Officer and Secretary to the
Department for Dialogue and Unity at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference
of England and Wales.
Archbishop Peter Smith
thanked the Canon for all his hard work with the Cathedral and wished
him evey blessing in his new post
The festivities continued
in Amigo Hall after the Mass and Canon John was presented with cards,
and a celebration cake
Archbishop Peter has
written a Pastoral Letter to be read on the Sunday before Ash Wednesday
2015 - Sunday 15th February 2015
10 New Jesuit Deacons
On Saturday 7th February
2015 the ordination to the Diaconate of ten Jesuits studying in London
was celebrated at the Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George
The Society of Jesus has
had a long history of ministry within the Archdiocese of Southwark
The Deacons are: Tomson
Antony. Courage Bakasa, Milton Costa, Ravindra Darshima, Francis Dores,
Deepak George, Richard Hiruthayaraj, Francisco Mota, Probash Pius
Rozario and Leo Thomas
The Deacons will remain in
the London area whilst they continue their studies
Mass with staff of Catholic Schools in the
Borough of Southwark
Staff of the Catholic
from the Borough of Southwark gathered for Mass on 3rd February 2015 in
the Metropolitan Cathedral Church of St George
Archbishop Peter presided at the Mass and was joined by Canon Michael
Cooley and Father Philip Smith, Acting Dean of the Cathedral
A large number from the
communities of the primary schools attended the
celebration and Archbishop Peter thanked them for their hard work and
dedication. It is hoped that this will become an annual celebration
The celebration continued in School Hall of St George's
Primary School, with refreshments and a lot of
Missionaries of Saint Paul Mass of Thanksgiving
On the evening of
Friday, 23rd January 2015, Archbishop Peter Smith
presided at a Mass of Thanksgiving with the Missionary Society of Saint
Paul in the Cathedral
The UK Mission of the Society started in 2000 and in that year Fr.
Addison Okpeh joined the Archdiocese of Southwark.
In 2002 Fr
Durugbo (now the UK Mission Superior) and Fr Casmir Dike arrived to
join Fr Addison in Southwark. Today the Society has ten priests in the
diocese who have the care of six parishes: Beckenham Hill, Deptford,
Gravesend, Norbiton, Nunhead, Stockwell and Brixton
The celebrations continued
in Amigo Hall after Mass
The Religious of the Archdiocese of Southwark come together
to celebrate the Year of Consecrated Life
The Religious of the
diocese gathered together on 2nd February 2015 in the Metropolitan
Cathedral Church of St George to celebrate the Year of Consecrated Life
in response to Pope Francis' invitation.
Leading the procession
was Religious from the Diocese, carrying symbols of their Consecrated
Life. The Bible, the Word of God, on which they base their Christian
Religious Lives, carried by Fr. Bob Mercer, a Franciscan Friar of the
Atonement. A Breviary, the Divine Office, with which they pray daily
and for the Church, brought by Sr. Norma Lynch, a Sister of Mercy. A
copy of Constitutions, the Work of God, which encapsulates
the charism of their respective Founders and Foundresses, and as
transmitted in our Constitutions and Rule of Life. This was carried
by Sr. Patricia Heller, recently elected Congregational Leader of the
Sisters of St. Anne.
Finally, a Globe, this represents the Religious of our
Archdiocese, coming from the various continents and countries of the
world, a rich tapestry of peoples, building up the Kingdom of God on
earth. The globe will be carried by Sr. Esther, of the Missionary
Sisters of St. Peter Claver.
Today is the
International Day for Consecrated Life - so they united with their
Sisters and Brothers throughout the world
All the Religious
present, with lit candles, made a Act of Deciiation recommitting
themselves to the Religious Life
Bishop Pat then
distributed a candle to each order present for them to take back to
The Diocesan Chancery
Diocesan Chancery has revised and added information to its page on this
The Chancery forms for Marriage,
Reception into full
communion with the Church and the Commissioning of Extra-ordinary
Ministers of the Eucharist are now available for priests and deacons to
download from this page.
Please click on the logo above to visit
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