An Easter Message from
Resurrection of Christ and Women at the Tomb
Fresco - 1441 - Convento di San Marco, Florence
When we Christians celebrate Easter, we celebrate the fact
that Christ is risen from the dead
and that he lives in our hearts and minds through the power and
presence of the Holy Spirit, who is the Lord and giver of Life. In
celebrating Easter we are celebrating life itself and life to the full.
From the darkness of his death, the light of eternal life shone out in
all its brightness when Jesus, the Light of the world, was raised to
Our Easter faith is a joyful and
exultant proclamation that there is a real meaning to life, a vitality
to every day, a purpose to those efforts of loving which can at times
tire our hearts and distress our spirit. We believe that the whole
meaning and purpose of life lies in the gift of love - that
self-giving love which was at the heart of Christ's own life - a love
that will never end.
We will know that Easter is real, that Christ lives, when we
allow him to make our own lives sources of light and life for others;
when our words heal and encourage; when our hearts come alive with
compassion; when we stand firm for the value of life in all its
aspects. Easter becomes a reality in our own lives when people are
healed, consoled and strengthened by the life-giving love we show to
each other, and especially to those in need. Easter is real when we
become living signs and symbols of the presence of the risen Christ in
our world, and of the values which he taught during his life on earth.
May the presence of the risen Christ in your lives bring you
happiness and renewed strength this special Easter during the Jubilee
With my blessing and an
assurance of my prayers,
Archbishop of Southwark
The Solemn Liturgy of the
Passion of the Lord was held in the Cathedral at 3.00
The Passion was read by
Father Ola and members of the parish
The cross was then venerated
Holy Thursday is the
commemoration of the Last Supper of Jesus Christ, when he established
the sacrament of Holy Communion prior to his arrest and crucifixion. It
also commemorates His institution of the priesthood
Jesus performed a final
of service for his Disciples, following the Passover meal. Arising from
the table, He tied a towel about His waist and filled a basin with
water. Then, one after another He washed the feet of each disciple. We
too are called to serve others in a spirit of humility. Archbishop
Peter washed the feet of 12 parishioners
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 beyond.
RENEWAL OF ORDINATION
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 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.
The 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 name.
Following the Mass the oils are
brought in procession into
Archbishop's House where the Deanery Oils Stocks are filled.
These are then taken back to the
Dearies where the Parish Oil
Stocks are filled and use throughout the Diocese
Peter celebrated Palm Sunday Mass with the clergy and community of the
Deacon Michael Gould retires as the Chair of Sacred Heart
Govering Body after 25 years
Heart School and Parish marked the retirement of Deacon Michael Gould
as the Chair of Governors at a Mass of Thanksgiving on Monday 14th
principle celebrant was Bishop Patrick Lynch and he was joined by
Father Victor, Father David, Father Paul and Father Gerry. The Sacred
Heart Church was full with pupils, staff and invited guests. Deacon
Michael's wife Joan was also a guest of honour
At the end of the service Bishop Pat presented Michael with the
Southwark Diocesan Fideliter Servienti (Faithful Servant) award.
is an award that Archbishop Peter has established as a means of
recognising the faithful work done by so many people in the diocese.
is a token of the appreciation that the Archbishop and the Diocese has
for the work that Michael has carried out
was followed by a lavish afternoon trea and speeches from all the Heads
of the Sacred Heart School who Michael had worked with.
A guard of honour was formed by the pupils of the Sacred Heart School
from the church to the school hall
Three Diocesan Medals and a Farewell at the CCF
On Thursday 10 March, at the Centre for Catholic Formation, Tooting
Bec, Archbishop Peter Smith celebrated Mass at which he presented three
Diocesan Fideliter Servienti (Faithful Servant) Medals. Suzanne Evans,
Lewis Horner and Colleen Quaranta have, between them, volunteered at
the Centre for over 67 years.
Archbishop Peter established this diocesan award as a means of
recognising the faithful work done by so many people in the diocese;
work which could perhaps best be described as above and beyond the call
Also on this day, the Centre for Catholic Formation bade farewell to Dr
Frank Keen, a diocesan employee for 16 years, who has been heavily
involved with the Catholic Certificate for Religious Studies (CCRS).
All at the Centre and those who know him from his work with the CCRS
and the Rite of Election wish Frank all the best in retirement.
Jubilee of Mercy: '24 Hours for the Lord'
Catholic Churches through out the world joined '24 hours for
Lord' initiative which Pope Francis began in 2014, encouraging
people to come and spend time
in front of the Blessed Sacrament. In this Jubilee of Mercy there is a
particular invitation to go to the Sacrament of Reconciliation;the Holy
Father spent some time in St Peter's Rome exercising this
Cathedral took its part in the initiative, and there
was prayer and adoration from 12.30pm on Friday 4th March;
special time came to a conclusion at the end of the Saturday
12.30pm Mass. Fr
Paul Mason, Episcopal Vicar for Kent, will began the 24 hours by
celebrating the 12.30pm Mass. Adoration then took place in the
Cathedral, most of the time at the main Altar. Additional opportunities
for the Sacrament of Reconciliation were made available from
midnight on the Friday, several visiting priests joined the Cathedral
including Archbishop Peter and Bishop Paul Hendricks.
the course of the night, on each hour, some brief reflection or prayer
was led. The Reflections focused on the Works of Mercy, and provided
thought provoking material to bring to prayer. The 'Night Shift' will
Mass celebrated by Archbishop Peter at 9.30am. The team from
Diocesan Youth Service laid on some extra opportunities to pray in a
more hands on way. An example of this was the creation of a Mercy Icon
which some of the young people who attended the '24 hours' helped to
prayerfully paint. The finished Icon was received and blessed by
Archbishop Peter during the morning Mass.
The Archbishop is grateful to the
Cathedral Clergy, Staff and Parishioners for helping to make this
possible, and particularly to the Southwark Catholic Youth Service
(SCYS) for co-ordinating the 'Night Shift'.
Archbishop Peter, the SCYS team
and the Mercy Icon after Mass.
Holy Family - Thanet
24 Hours for the Lord
The Parish Church of The Holy Family – Thanet followed Pope Francis'
invitation and spent 24 hours for the Lord
The exposition began at 10 am on Friday 4th March, with Stations of the
Cross at 11.30 am followed by Friday's daily Mass.
church then remained open having parishioners always in attendance with
the exposed Blessed Sacrament until Exposition was concluded with
Saturday morning Mass at 10 am.
'The 100 Best Stained Glass Sites in London'
St George's Cathedral has been featured in a newly published booking
detailing the best stained glass sites in London
book called 'The 100 Best Stained Glass Sites in London' is beautifully
illustrated and contains a great deal of detail about each site. The
author, Caroline Swash, presented a copy to the Dean of the Cathedral
Fr Richard Hearn in front of the newly restored west window.
a very small amount of the original Pugin stained glass survived the
war time bombing most of the stained glass dates from the late 1950s.
east and west windows are by the Harry Clarke Studios in Dublin. The
east window depicts the crucifixion, our Lord is surrounded by the
saints, the west window is of the coronation of the our Lady.
two other major windows are in the north transept, commemorating the
visit of Pope St. John Paul II in 1982, and in the east end above the
Holy Door, a memorial to deceased members of the Order of the Holy
Sepulchre. Both are by John Lawson of Goddard & Gibbs Studio.