News Archive for 2008 - August and September

Centenary of Saint Bartholomew's Church, Norbury

Archbishop Kevin presided over Mass at Saint Bartholomew's Church, Norbury, on Monday, 29th September 2008, to commemorate the centenary of the opening of the church in September 1908.

Father Tom Cooper, Parish Priest, Father Philip Glandfield and Deacon Paul Milligan, along with the parishioners, have organised a celebration year (May 2008 - May 2009) to mark the centenary.

Their Centenary celebrations opened  on 5th May, when Bishop Paul offered Mass and a parish picnic followed in the afternoon.

Archbishop Kevin greets the people after Mass

More photos of the occasion

Clapham Common celebrates on its patronal feast

Bishop Paul anoints the new altar with chrism

On the feast of Saint Vincent de Paul, 27th September 2008, Bishop Paul joined the priests and people of Saint Vincent de Paul Parish, Clapham Common, to dedicate their new altar.

The church was packed for the occasion and all the parish clergy were present: Father David Standley (Parish Priest), Father Paul Teece (Assistant Priest), Father Chris O'Brien and Deacon John Dal Din.


Canon Martin Lee is appointed a Prelate of Honour

The Holy Father has appointed Canon Martin Lee a Prelate of Honour with the title Monsignor. Archbishop Kevin presented him with the document from Rome at the Council of Priests meeting, which was held at the Little Sisters of the Poor, Meadow Road, Vauxhall on Wednesday, 24th September 2008.

Monsignor Martin has been the Financial Secretary for our diocese since 1998. He is also chaplain to the Little Sisters of the Poor.

Plymouth Cathedral celebrates 150 years

This year, which celebrates the 150th anniversary of the apparitions at Lourdes, also marks the 150th anniversary of the opening of the Cathedral Church of St Mary and St Boniface in the diocese of Plymouth.

Bishop Christopher Budd, Bishop of Plymouth, with Cardinal Cormac
and the Apostolic Nuncio, Archbishop Faustino Sainz Muñoz,
surrounded by concelebrant bishops and priests

The highlight of the celebrations was the Mass on Monday, 22nd September 2008. Archbishop Michael, Bishops John and Paul, Monsignor William Saunders and Canon James Cronin were among those from Southwark who were present.

Plymouth diocese belongs to the Southwark Province, as do the dioceses of Arundel and Brighton and Portsmouth.

More photos of the occasion

West Norwood road named after Canon John Devane

Lambeth Council has named a road after Canon John Devane, Provost Emeritus and former Parish Priest of St Matthew's, West Norwood, in recognition of his many years of service to the local community. The road is opposite West Norwood Station.

The announcement was well received in the parish over the weekend, 20th/21st September 2008.

Aylesford to host the relics of St Thérèse of Lisieux

The relics of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux, 'The Little Flower', are to be brought to England and Wales for veneration from 16th September until 16th October 2009.

The casket containing her relics has already visited forty countries and has attracted large crowds.

The itinerary of twenty-two venues has been published and in Southwark her relics will rest at Aylesford Priory from Friday, 9th October until Sunday, 11th October, where a spiritual weekend is being planned.



Congratulations to

Congratulations to James Abbott (webmaster) and the team of the  Catholic Church in England and Wales website for being recognised as the Best Christian Organisation Blog or Website in the Christian Blog and Web Awards 2008.

Please click here to visit the Catholic Church in England and Wales website

Congratulations, too, to the team of the Diocese of Northampton's youth site which was recognised as the Best Provision for Youth Website. The presentations were made on Friday, 19th September.

Please click here for the Diocese of Northampton's youth website


The Holy Father made his own personal pilgrimage to Lourdes from Saturday, 13th September until Monday, 15th September in celebration of the 150th Anniversary of the apparitions.

We have added a page of photos of his visit to our Lourdes section.
Please click on the banner above to see them.

Bishops join for prayer in the air

Bishop Paul attended the final day of a weekend ecumenical event organised by Churches Together in Forest Hill and Sydenham. One of the activities was a flight in a hot-air balloon. Bishop Paul joined Bishop Christopher Chessun, Anglican Bishop of the Woolwich area of the Diocese of Southwark for the flight - the idea was to pray for the local area spread out below.

Read Bishop Paul's account of the event - and the flight

Saint Paul - a focus for our priests' in-service training

Father Gerald Ewing, the Director of On-Going Formation of Priests, and his team have organised a series of ten study days between October 2008 and July 2009 which will have a strong emphasis on the Word of God and the Life and Teaching of Saint Paul  in this Pauline Year.

In the brochure which launched this programme for priests and deacons, Archbishop Kevin wrote of the choice of topics 'This links our Diocese with the wider Church - and connects us especially with the Synod of Bishops this year, and its theme - the Word of God, as well as the celebrations for the Year of Saint Paul.'

A ten-day Course in Spiritual Direction will take place in May at Saint John's Seminary, Wonersh, led by the seminary's Spirituality Department.

Visit our section devoted to the Year of Saint Paul

Centenary celebrations at Whitstable

Archbishop Kevin with Deacon Jim Foley from Herne Bay

On Wednesday, 3rd September 2008, Father Kevin St Aubyn, Parish Priest, Deacon Dan Mulcahy and the parishioners of Our Lady Immaculate, Whitstable, welcomed Archbishop Kevin, who joined them to offer Mass in celebration of the centenary of the consecration of their church.

Also present were priests who had formerly served in Whitstable and the clergy of the Canterbury deanery. Three ministers from local Christian Churches who attended came to the Archbishop for a blessing during the Communion.

The church was consecrated by Bishop Peter Amigo on 3rd September 1908.

A brief history of Our Lady Immaculate, Whitstable

Founder of the Little Way Association dies

Mary Doohan, the Founder and lifetime President of The Little Way Association died at the Little Sisters of the Poor, Meadow Road, Vauxhall, on Friday, 29th August 2008, aged 91.

Mary Doohan receives her Damehood of St Gregory
from Archbishop Michael on 5th October 1996

For nearly fifty years, The Little Way Association has aided the missionary activity of the Church and promoted the spirituality of Saint Thérèse of Lisieux.

Mary's funeral will take place in her parish, Saint Mary's, Clapham, on Monday, 8th September, at 12:30 pm.

A Memorial Mass will be celebrated at a later date in St George's Cathedral.

May she rest in peace.

Please click here for a fuller report

Three hundred and forty pilgrims from Southwark are among the 1,200-strong Catholic Association pilgrimage to Lourdes which takes place form 22nd until 29th August. This annual pilgrimage has a special significance this year as it is the 150th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady to Saint Bernadette at the grotto.

Visit our Lourdes Jubilee Year section either by clicking on the Lourdes 2008 banner above or the logo on the sidebar.

Please click on this photo to see an enlarged version

To view photographs of the Lourdes Pilgrimage and to read Bishop Paul's diary and listen to his audio diary please click on this link:

Summertime 2008: Altar Servers' Summer Break

From 19th - 22nd August 2008, at Woldingham in Surrey, 28 altar servers from a number of parishes of the Southwark diocese attended "Summertime 2008", an annual residential event led by Fr. Stephen Boyle, the Southwark chaplain to the Guild of St. Stephen. There were imaginative talks on the faith, discussion, daily Mass, opportunities for Confession and devotional prayers. There were also sports, ten pin bowling, and a visit to Chessington World of Adventures. Such was the success of this event that a reunion was asked for this term. Bishop Patrick came for the last day to celebrate Mass and to meet the servers and the team.

Bishop Patrick with the team

Ecuadorian community celebrates feast of Our Lady

On Sunday, 17th August 2008, Bishop Patrick celebrated the annual Mass for the Feast of Nuestra Senora del Cisne at St Thomas the Apostle Church in Nunhead. This day is celebrated on the Feast of the Assumption by Ecuadorian people throughout the world. It  commemorates the appearance of Our Lady in the town of Loja in southern Ecuador over three hundred years ago. Every August over five hundred Ecuadorian people gather for a procession, Mass and a celebration at St Thomas the Apostle Church.

More photos of the occasion in Our Ethnic Communities section

Birchington centenary of first Mass since Reformation

On 15th August 2008, Abbot Paulinus Greenwood OSB, Abbot of Ramsgate, offered Mass at the church of Our Lady and Saint Benedict in Birchington to mark the centenary of the first public Mass in the village since the Reformation, which was offered on the Feast of the Assumption in 1908.

Short report with more photos

A new Prior at Aylesford Priory

Father Brendan Grady, OCarm takes up his appointment as Prior at The Friars, Aylesford, on Monday, 4th August 2008. He has spent the past three years as the Chaplain of the Shrine of Saint Jude at Faversham and has been the provincial delegate to the Carmelite Third Order.

He is joined at Aylesford by Father Joseph Chalmers, OCarm who becomes Sub-Prior and Novice Director. Father Joseph has spent twelve years in Rome as the Prior General of the Carmelite Order worldwide.

Father Francis Kemsley, OCarm, the previous Prior of Aylesford, moves to his new appointment as Prior and Parish Priest at the English Martyrs, Walworth.