Sunday, 11 February 2007

A weekend in Wiltshire

Hello everyone, we're back! We went to Wiltshire county with Fr. Alex to visit some friends of his, Sarah and Paul and their daughter Emily. On the way there we stopped off in Salisbury to see the the Anglican cathedral, which has the highest spire of any cathedral in England. We discovered from Fr. Alex that his great uncle, Geoffrey Lunt, was bishop of the cathedral from 1946-48! The cathedral is one of only four to house an original copy of the Magna Carta, signed by King John.
I still wouldn't trade it's pristine whitewashed columns though for the wear and tear of St. Patrick's!

At Sarah and Paul's we did a lot of walking in the English countryside. Paul led us through the woods and the fields to the delights of an English pub where we refueled. Paul and Fr. Alex also kept slipping out for 'important meetings', which meant watching the cricket and the rugby. Yesterday we celebrated the memorial of St. Scholastica at Mass, which had beautiful readings. Fr. Alex gave a homily about St. Scholastica's good relationship with her brother Benedict, and how one time she prevented him from ending a visit so soon by praying for rain, which meant that he was forced to stay and they spent the whole night talking about the things of God. I don't know, maybe it's because he's Italian - the English certainly aren't kept from the outdoors by a little rain, as we found out on our walks!

Coming back last night we met Bishop Bernard Longley who was saying the weekend Masses in the parish where some of us live (St. Mary and St. Michael's in Commercial Road, East London. The rest of us live in St. Anne's presbytery off of Whitechapel, which is a very Brazilian parish). So we got to chat with him for a bit. Overall we've had a very restful time, and are ready to begin the new week, which promises to be good as we have Life in the Spirit and lectures from the Fransiscan Friars of the Renewal. Have a happy feast of Our Lady of Lourdes!

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