Sunday, 20 February 2011

Mass for the Chair of St Peter

I'm preparing a homily for the Feast of the Chair of St Peter as I have been asked to preach at Solemn Mass at the Church of the Sacred Heart and the English Martyrs in Thornley, near Durham, this Tuesday at 7.30pm. The Parish Priest there is another old Ushavian (if that's the correct term for those whose Alma Mater is St Cuthbert's Seminary at Ushaw) Fr Gary Dickson. We are now an endangered species, as the last ordinations from that seminary - after 217 years - will take place this year, now that it is due to close. Perhaps, like other endangered species, we will get some special protection and it will be forbidden to attack us or destroy our natural habitats - it could save any number of churches from closure!
(In fact, the history of the College goes back to it's predecessor at Douay founded in 1568 by Cardinal Allen - so 443 years.)

Anyway, the picture above (from 1894) shows the Entrance Hall (now compromised with PC fire safety doors). In th' olden days, where the red lino on the stairs began no seminarian's foot could tread - Profs only! (That's me on the left!)

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