Monday 7 January 2013

Relics of St John Bosco at Liverpool Cathedral






The relics of St John Bosco are on tour through the UK.  They were at the Liverpool Metropolitan cathedral today.  I wasn't there but a friend who took his family sent me a text or two afterwards describing some of what they had experienced.  At the Offertory - about 42 minutes into the video - they were treated to dancing girls up and down the aisle and gyrating on the sanctuary floor in front of the altar.  I make no comment on it, except to say it's probably a good thing I didn't go.  I thought this sort of episode was now a thing of the past, relegated to the 1970's but you can make your own minds up. I beg you to be charitable if you decide to comment.  I don't know what the rest of the pilgrimage of his relics has been like and I don't know much in detail about the Saint - although I believe that he had a particular devotion to the Pope and loyalty to his teachings - to the extent of being described as "ultra-montane" in his views by some authors.

Apologies for not being able to highlight the particularly relevant part of the video but it proved beyond my technical  skill.  

The video is courtesy of
Apologies also for the advert at the start which you will have to endure & others that pop up during the video that might be considered unsuitable during the viewing of Mass - a reminder that using secular forums can lead to incongruous juxtapositions.

St John Bosco - Pray for us.


Anonymous said...

Unbelievable! Where is the sacredness gone in our churches!

Zephyrinus said...


Fr Michael Brown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fr Michael Brown said...

Maybe the new archbishop will not be keen on that kind of thing.

Hunted Priest said...

"For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear" (2 Tim 4:3)

Now that +Patrick has resigned dare we hope for 'sound doctrine'?

Matthew Jackson said...

THis video is shocking, not only in its content but also in highlighting the diabolical situation that 'les soixante-huit' have buried the Church in.

Why have these sycophants tried to destroy the faith, and attempted to replace it with a semi-humanist, ultra 'spiritual rather than religion', wothless, socialist agenda?

This usurping of the truth didn't work in the 1960/70s, it hasn't worked since then, it doesn't work now and it will never work.

O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our most gentle Queen and Mother look down in mercy upon England, thy dowry, and upon us who greatly hope and trust in thee.

By thee it was that Jesus, our Saviour and our hope was given unto the world; and He has given thee to us that we might hope still more.

Plead for us thy children, whom thou didst receive and accept at the foot of the cross, O Sorrowful Mother, Intercede for our separated brethren, that with us in the one true fold, they may be united to the Chief Shepherd, the Vicar of thy Son.

Pray for us all, dear Mother, that by faith, fruitful in good works we may all deserve to see and praise God, together with thee in our heavenly home. AMEN.

Anonymous said...

Noting the good Archbishop's retirement (I shall continue to pray for his health) - I think that the replacement for this See will be a defining moment for the Church in this country. It is an all or nothing situation. No disrespect intended to either Shrewsbury or Portsmouth.

I suspect that quite a few priests will now be slightly worrried that their 'star' is waning whilst a goodly number will wait to see which way the wind blows as in song 'The Vicar of Bray'.

Finally there will be a small number of good priests who will be praying for the best outcome possible but should the replacement be 'more of the same' they will bravely carry on as they have been doing these very many years. What a great pity that there are many good and holy priests who have already gone to their reward but who, hopefully will be interceding on our behalf for the appointment of a courageous and outspoken defender of The Faith in this once staunchly Catholic heartland.

Bring on the dancing girls!

Our Lady, Health of the Sick - pray for him.

St John Bosco - Pray for Us

O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us, who have recourse to thee.

Anonymous said...

I was there and the dancing was cringeworthy in the setting of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

PJM said...

I can handle the flags, but the girl with her skirt around her neck on the altar... not appropriate!

GWAM said...

The first two commenters at the top say "unbelievable".

Sadly, I have to inform them that it's all too highly believable.

Indeed, for this deeply confused Archdiocese, I have to say that the girl gyrating on the sanctuary is relatively reverent compared to some of the things I've witnessed in the last five years alone in various parts of the Archdiocese.

Thankfully now there is video evidence to prove this particular episode. If only I had similar footage of the priest I witnessed performing a finger-clicking box-square dance at the "Our Father" point of Mass. Or a recording of the priest I witnessed approaching the sanctuary wearing a garland of "L Plates" around his neck ("It's coz I'm new 'ere - so go easy with me, I'm just a learner..."). Or the priest I witnessed using Hannah Montana posters as a visual aid to accompany his "homily". Or the priest I have witnessed, several times, who launches - yes, like a missile - M&Ms, mini Mars Bars, Topics, Snickers etc from the lectern towards the congregants in the pews ("eeyar, catch!") each Easter and Christmas.

And there's much more, believe me. So a girl dancing to an Emile Sande pop tune? Quite restrained, really - for Liverpool.

Damask Rose said...

Oh, dear God.

So the dancing girl did all that before the altar and the priests.

Someone made the priests watch that.

I'm so sorry Fathers. God bless you all.

And that's what they brought to God at the Offertory, the Liturgy of the Eucharist?

Why didn't the dancing girl wear a modest cat-suit?

St John Bosco looked after all those boys and had visions of hell.

I don't know what's worse. This video here, or Gregory's comment at 22.27.

What a dreadful way for the Diocese to start the New Year.

Damask Rose said...

Happy New Year Fr Henry. I look forward to reading many more threads on your blog.

All best wishes to commenters and readers.

Despairing said...

It was a pity, Father, that you spoilt your comment by using the word 'Mass' in your final sentence. I skipped through the video and wondered what kind of event this was, and which religion was being portrayed.
The collection of white-clad figures, as seen from a distance, could have been druids. The rows and rows of empty pews was a clear indication that the people of Liverpool probably had a good idea of what to expect and wanted no part of it. The female dancer gyrating around the floor was quite scandalous. However, my complaint would not be against her but against those who instigated this scandal. And there seemed to be people just wandering about aimlessly all the way through. Finally, I have never been able to understand why priests feel they should hold a higher place than the Son of God. The seats (thrones?) near the altar were atop about four or five steps and the ministers, when standing or seated, were looking down on the altar on which our Saviour was sacrificed. John the Baptist said that he was unfit to untie the strap of Jesus' sandal yet here we have priests looking down upon their Lord. The opening psalm of the traditional Mass has it right: "I will go UP unto the altar of God." This has been changed to: I will look DOWN on the altar of God. God has been removed from His rightful place and usurped by man. This is why our churches and seminaries are empty. The laity may not be theologians but they certainly know that something has gone seriously wrong and deserted in droves. Let us pray most earnestly for a new appointment to Liverpool who will restore the faith and insist on orthodox liturgical practice. There are many good, holy, and orthodox priests who can fulfil this role if one looks beyond the diocesan in-crowd.

Anonymous said...

one notes during the video that the auxillary bishop does indeed carry the diocesan crosier, although in the closed position....but then takes his place as president of the assembly at the Cathedra!!!!

oremus pro invicem

JamesP said...

Father, I have done the technical work for you so people can avoid the advert and skip straight to the relevant parts...

Fr Simon Henry said...

Thank you, James.

Tony Heyes said...

St. John Bosco founded the Salesians and wrote a particularly saccharin book "The Companion of Youth" handed out to all boys at Salesian schools. It probably wasn't as bad in the original Italian but it did not translate well into the English idiom and caused much impious hilarity.

Jeremy said...

It wasn't so much profane as entirely irrelevant, like most bad liturgy.

Anonymous said...

"Dancing is not a form of expression for the Christian liturgy...It is totally absurd to try to make the liturgy "attractive" by introducing dancing pantomimes... which frequently end in applause." - Joseph Ratzinger 'The Spirit of the Liturgy' p.198herschca

Steve said...

I was at the Mass on Monday evening at the Cathedral and certainly that Mass was a very solemn and yet joyous Mass.Certainly no activities as described above.
Jacko,my friend you are too quick to judge when you aren't privy to events.
I am puzzled why there are so many negative comments.
Is Religion really about the colour of vestments or which way round a crosier goes?

Anonymous said...

Good morning

In my experience it is very difficult to have any sort of reasoned debate on this type of comment board - but I would like to make a couple of observations if I may be allowed;

- some of the comments made about what happened in Liverpool are speculative and not entirely accurate
- I am somewhat shocked at the un-Christian comments made by some people - defending the 'Church' in an un-Christian or un-Catholic manner, I cannot understand. St John Bosco once said you will attract more people with a spoonful of honey than a barrelful of vinegar.
- We can all take quotes out of context to make them fit our argument.

Thousands of people young and old are experiencing the Pilgrimage of the Relics of Don Bosco up and down the Country (over 2000 yesterday at Westminster Cathedral) - can I ask you to keep the whole organising Team in your prayers, focusing on what unites us rather than what divides us.

With respect and promise of my prayers,

Fr Robert Gardner SDB
Salesian Link
Office of Social Media and Communications

GWAM said...

This not mere "religion" we are talking about, Steve. This is the Faith. The Truth. Of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Secured as She is safely on the twin bases of Scripture and Tradition, proclaimed by us, secure on those solid footings, by our human means of Reason assisting and serving Holy Faith - a great gift given to us by God.

But here a girl was seen gyrating around the sanctuary (think about that word and what it means) and then (excuse this, but it clearly has to be said) performed an upwards pelvic thrust and showed her undergarments to the watching Bishop (who, along with his fellow brother priests, was sat, such is the modernistic configuration of the Metropolitan Cathedral, with his back to the tabernacle in which is gloriously housed the Blessed Sacrament of the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ). There is no way in heaven and on earth that the Mass on Monday could have been described, substantively, as solemn. Parts of it may have been. But at least one part of it was not. Substantially, then, that Mass' whole was rendered most un-solemn. Let me repeat again: a girl took to the sanctuary and displayed herself suggestively for all to see! That happened, time and again in the space of the 4 mins 45 secs that it takes to play Emile Sande's "Read All About It" which was inappropriately blaring out of the Bose speaker system.

It happened at the Offertory. Just prior to the most solemn part of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. The re-presentation in un-bloody manner of the Sacrifice of Our Lord at Calvary, where He hung and bled and died for your sake, my sake, the Bishop's sake and the sake of that girl thrusting aside her modesty. This is the eternal and timeless Sacrifice of Jesus we're talking about, where He re-presents Himself at the Holy Altar at Mass and provides the means of sacramental grace, through Holy Communion, the bread of heaven, by which we hope to find our way home to the paradise we foolishly spurned through our own pride and human failure.

He, Jesus, through His justice and mercy, has given us the chance to redeem ourselves. And this is how we treat that solemn and sacred gift? By the human foolishness and pride of tolerating overtly sexual (it is, it was - that cannot be disputed - we've all seen the video, well...before it was unsurprisingly removed by the owner) and suggestive gyrations and thrusting upon the sanctuary? Simply being in any church - let alone being on the sanctuary - should fill anyone with the comfort of holy fear and terror, and the consolation that we have a second chance of finding favour with God.

I truly pray that you understand this, Steve. What happened at the Cathedral on Monday was a massive insult to Christ. There is no other way to put it. We should all be ashamed of ourselves that we've allowed the Holy Church to reach a point where this type of garbage is tolerated at Mass.

Anonymous said...

On Monday morning the cathedral was full of secondary school children.With the notable exception of the boys of St Anselms College , everyone was talking loudly and seemed oblivious to the idea of veneration . The relic was surrounded by standing groups who were being given a lesson on Don Bosco. It looked as if the Salesian schools had simply taken all of their students there without any sense that they should be reverent and quiet.The clergy present seemed pleased that young people were in a church at all , maybe they think expecting anything more was impossible.The magic acts and various other forms of experience could easily have been held away from the Blessed Sacrament chapel

Steve said...

I think there is some confusion.I presume the Pan's Person was at Sunday's Mass as she certainly didn't have a return gig on Monday.