The Crucifixion Scene at Pantasaph

Torch of The Faith News on Wednesday 10 September 2008 - 19:35:43 | by admin

pope_pius_ix_003.jpgIn an earlier post I mentioned the life-sized Calvary Scene at the top of the Stations of The Cross at Pantasaph, and the fact that an Indulgence is granted for devoutly praying for the conversion of England whilst looking at the cross. This devotion firmly links the prayers of the English and the Welsh.

The famed poet Francis Thompson paced beneath this cross, reciting snatches of his poem
'Ode to the Setting Sun'.

However, I would like to quote a cheery poem written by a friar in the 1920's to describe a visit from Josephine Monogue from Eccles. (The said lady led a group of pilgrims up the Stations when the poetic friar was delayed).

You have heard of Julius Caesar
And of Great Napoleon too,
And of how the English general
Beat the French at Waterloo.
But there is a page of history
That is not yet in vogue.
Of how the Eccles Pilgrimage
Was led by Jo Monogue!

(Extract taken from the wonderful Margaret Swarbrick's The Story of Pantasaph )

The Indulgence

Torch of The Faith News on Wednesday 10 September 2008 - 19:23:40 | by admin

pope_pius_ix_005.jpgHere is the plaque on the rear of the cross confirming the details of the Indulgence.
When Viscount Fielding and his family converted to the Catholic Faith, Pope Pius IX also gave them the newly discovered relics of St. Primitivus. This great and hallowed treasure was stored in a reliquary beneath the Lady altar. His Holiness also granted an Indulgence to those who honoured the relics of the Roman saint on his feast day; the 27th September. All of which confirms the importance of Pantasaph as another key place in the New Evangelization of Great Britain. 

Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral

Torch of The Faith News on Monday 08 September 2008 - 20:52:28 | by admin

our_ladys_birthday_003.jpgWe went over to Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral today to celebrate the Feast of the Birth of Our Blessed Lady. Fr. Ian O'Shea preached about Our Lady under the title 'Cause of our joy', explaining that she enjoys this title because she is more than a mere recepticle of the Incarnation; she is rather the Mother of Jesus Christ. As such she truly is the long awaited cause of our joy as Christians. Fr. Ian also wisely pointed out the harmony between Catholic doctrine and experience which both point to the reality that authentic love of Our Lady only, and always, increases devotion to Her Son.

Although I am not normally a fan of modern architecture I do love this particular view across the Cathedral's sanctuary. This is because the broad band of red light from the long window at the left surges from above and down to the confessionals in the Reconciliation chapel. Not only do the blue and red bands call to mind the Precious Blood and Water flowing from Christ's Sacred Heart, but the sheer scale of them in relation to the confessionals and indeed the approaching penitent speak to me of Christ's superabundance of love gushing down to lovingly overwhelm the repentant sinner. Isn't that the kind of Saviour we all need? 

Interestingly, Fr. Mike Williams tells me that often times these windows are brightly lit from behind when the sun is high in the sky behind and above them around 3pm.

Why not approach the Mercy seat of God and make a good confession while you may? If we only knew what the Lord offers us in the way of mercy, gentleness and renewal of heart, mind, body, soul, memory and intellect we would run to Him. Tell a friend!

Happy Birthday to Our Blessed Lady

Torch of The Faith News on Monday 08 September 2008 - 20:39:48 | by admin

our_ladys_birthday_004.jpgAfter Mass we had lunch with Fr. Mike in the pleasant surroundings of the Cathedral Plaza Shop. Here he is tucking into his celebratory Feast Day chilli!

Bring flowers of the rarest...

Torch of The Faith News on Monday 08 September 2008 - 20:33:43 | by admin

our_ladys_birthday.jpgBack in the 'domestic church' of our home in Wales, we had a miniature procession with a fresh bouquet of flowers to present to Our Lady for her birthday, whilst singing As I kneel before you. (Those who attended our wedding may remember that we also then processed to present a bouquet at the Lady altar accompanied by the same song).

St Pio Day of Prayer in Wales

Torch of The Faith News on Sunday 07 September 2008 - 17:59:08 | by admin

st_pio_day_003.jpgGod bless those Franciscan friars at Pantasaph who've just pulled together another wonderful St. Pio Day of Prayer!

The prayers began in the outdoor shrine, where Fr. Keith Windsor led us in the Mysteries of Light at the foot of the new statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

Gathered in prayer

Torch of The Faith News on Sunday 07 September 2008 - 17:54:26 | by admin

st_pio_day_005.jpgPlenty of pilgrims had come from places as diverse as North Wales, Liverpool, Lancashire and even Nottingham.

Holy Mass and Relic Service

Torch of The Faith News on Sunday 07 September 2008 - 17:50:19 | by admin

st_pio_day_001.jpgThe beautiful friary church of St. David was full for the midday Mass at which Fr. Louis Maggiore preached powerfully on the necessity for, and benefits of, individual Confession due to Our Lord's commissioning His priests with the Power of the Keys to bind and to loose sins. He also called on us to get involved in going out and bringing in the lost and lonely; because this is our role in light of the virtue of our Christian Baptism.

After Holy Mass, Fr. Louis invited everyone who wished to pay individual devotion to St. Pio by honouring a relic of his garments to come forwards. Above, Angeline is in the process of doing so.

Visit from Alice and Frank Jones

Torch of The Faith News on Sunday 07 September 2008 - 17:42:08 | by admin

st_pio_day_006.jpgAfter lunch in the pilgrim's hall, we all watched a moving video of Alice Jones from Haydock, an Anglican lady who was healed by St. Pio many years ago and whose case was actually used by the Vatican commission for the Beatification of the, then, Padre Pio. 

It was lovely when the video ended, the lights came back on, and Alice and her husband Frank stood up to answer questions and share a little more of their testimony!

Before heading back over to the Church for a Holy Hour of Eucharistic Adoration, Confessions and prayers for healing, Fr. Keith reminded us all that 'we are in the business of truth'; that 'the world is heading the wrong way fast' and that it is 'our job to go out and bring it back!'

These prayer days are Grace filled. The next one is on Sunday 21st September, beginning at 10.30am in the pilgrim's hall. You've just been invited. Pray about it and come!

Come Holy Spirit

Torch of The Faith News on Sunday 07 September 2008 - 01:35:48 | by admin

recusants_016.jpgWe were north of Liverpool today for the First Saturday at Holy Spirit over in Ford, during which Fr. John Harris preached touchingly about the Birthday of Our Lady; which feast will be celebrated on Monday. He explained that, in light of Jesus giving Her to us all as our mother through the Apostle John, she is thus mother to each of us as individuals and as a community. He invited us to celebrate Her feast days with the love and devotion that we would for our earthly mother. Fr. recommended the highest prayer possible on earth; the Holy Mass as a suitable gift to Her. For those who cannot make that, he suggested they perform acts of kindness and prayer whilst saying to Her; This is for you Blessed Mother. Fr. also spoke touchingly of the great pro-life activist Fr. Cyril Thomas, who died not so long ago. Fr. Cyril used to have such a relationship with Our Lady, that he called her, simply Mother. Fr. Harris invited us to approach the Blessed Mother with all the simplicity and love with which one approaches one's earthly mum. At the Consecration at Holy Mass, the silence and atmosphere were charged with the Presence of God amongst us. Thanks be to God for the Holy Catholic Faith. If you know anyone who is lapsed call them home so they may come alive again in the love of the Lord. There really is nowhere else to be this side of the grave... or t'uther!!!

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