Thanks to Canon Peter McEvitt, we now have some lettering on the top step of the Holy Souls Chapel. Before you say that it is too far to the left, the new lectern (when we find one) will compensate for this. The flowers are from a recent funeral.
Canon Peter can be seen here at the organ this morning shortly before he preached for us at the High Mass. The heating was working tolerably although the new loop system for the speakers and microphones was not behaving itself, so the man who installed it will be coming back on Tuesday to fiddle with the workings and find out what the problem is. Apparently the loop system is working now, those with hearing aids tell me, but nobody else can hear, so maybe there is a moral in that somewhere.
Canon Paul Denby sang the Mass this morning; we used the 'Thom Curnutte Memorial Gothic Vestments'. A new purple High Mass set and cope has been ordered and I hope it will arrive at some point in early Lent; it has been necessary to restore some vestments and purchase new ones for some time now, we are getting there slowly. In my darker moments I wonder what the point is, if some people seem so keen to throw us out and we have a tendency to bite each other from time to time -there are one or two people whose feathers I have ruffled who I doubt will ever forgive me, for their own reasons - but we must do our best with the place, time and talents we have got, nothing more or, of course, less. The Society of Mary magazine also came today which is often enjoyable reading. I look forward to attending all their events after June, particularly those in the Blackburn Diocese, which I have hitherto been unable to reach. One of the churches in the Benefice I will be serving in has a service for the Society in December which I am greatly looking forward to.
The votive candle stand also came this week for the Holy Souls Chapel. Early this morning I lit candles for the intentions of the donor as well as those of Gabrielle, who has very kindly made a donation for candles to burn for her intentions from across the ocean. I had not, by this time, applied the lettering. The stand was instantly popular, with people lighting candles for their departed loved ones whose names are recorded in the book at the side of the altar. It all seemed happily far away from the synod and the odd-looking sausages and cake that Father Lee seemed to be eating yesterday.
Plenty of flowers this week around the Sacred Heart pay testament to prayers answered and devotion fostered. The kneelers were in heavy use with people praying for the future of the Church they love. This should not be happening, of course, those who want us out should be ashamed of themselves and if they could meet some of the people here, I am sure they would be, but life is not a series of what should be, but a narrative of what is, applied to the Gospel values and faith in the Kingdom of God, which involves not a little trial along the way. So this week I pray for those who pit themselves against us and pray that, one day,all, really all of us, not just the 'us' we like, can be one.