- Archbishop Bernard Longley spoke with the Catholic Herald about the papal visit and Cardinal John Henry Newman’s legacy.
What are you looking forward to most about the beatification and the whole trip?
The beatification comes as the culmination of the four-day visit of the Holy Father and I think that the interest and excitement towards the beatification will build up inevitably within those four days. I think that’s right because, as far as I understand it, one of the things which has persuaded Pope Benedict to accept this invitation on the part of Her Majesty’s Government, to accept also the welcome from our own Catholic Church in England and Wales and Scotland is precisely because of the beatification of Cardinal Newman. His own interest in this – and it is significant that he has decided, has chosen to do something which is quite unusual today which is personally to beatify somebody. This indicates, I think, the significance for the Catholic Church internationally of Cardinal Newman’s legacy, of his teaching, but also his witness as a holy priest.
There was this idea that maybe Pope Benedict would declare Cardinal Newman a Doctor of the Church. Would you hope for that? Do you think that’s a possibility?
When you look at Cardinal Newman’s legacy and all that he has contributed to religious thought, linked with his own personal holiness, I think that must be a great aspiration on the part of anybody who is delighted to see him beatified. If the Holy Father is thinking of doing that I think quite wisely he’s keeping it very quiet but if such a thing came it would be – obviously there would be a tremendous joy, no doubt, but who knows when that might be? Maybe some time in the future. ... [read the rest]
- Hope university is to host a Catholic conference ahead of the Pope’s visit to Britain, reports the Liverpool Daily Post (July 30, 2010):
The university has arranged the conference, “The Idea of a University – Revisited”, in association with The International Federation of Catholic Universities.Click here to download a programme for the conference.
The conference which runs from September 16 to 19 will bring together leading education experts and theologians and salute the contribution to higher education of the Venerable John Henry Cardinal Newman.
- Hundreds of thousands of Catholic school children will be taking part in the Pope’s address to young Catholics remotely, via the internet (Catholic Herald July 30, 2010).
- Mary’s Meals, based in Springburn, and Marie Curie Cancer Care have been chosen as the official charities of Pope Benedict XVI’s state visit to Scotland on September 16. (Evening Times July 29, 2010).
- Lord Chris Patten, named by the British Prime Minister to be in charge of Benedict XVI's trip to the United Kingdom told Vatican radio that the Pope's visit will be "an incredible success." (Zenit. July 28, 2010).
- Geoffrey Berg, author of The Six Ways of Atheism recently challenged Pope Benedict XVI to a public debate about the existence of God, which Berg hopes will take place during Benedict’s upcoming visit to the U.K. (Source: Kerry Weber, "In All Things" / America July 28, 2010).
- Faithful are urged to line the streets to greet Pontiff After some confusion about whether Catholics would be encouraged to see Pope Benedict XVI as he made his way to events during his four-day stay in Britain, organisers have said they hope people will come out to see him. (Catholic Herald. July 28, 2010).
- That purple Papal radio pitch in full... (Ekklesia.co.uk July 27, 2010). Some weeks ago it was speculated that Pope Benedict might be invited to deliver a Radio 4 'Thought for the Day' during his state and pastoral visit in September. Neither the pontiff's schedule nor any leaks from the heart of the BBC suggest that this is now likely. Jonathan Bartley, however, has an idea as to what might have transpired:
Pope: "Good Morning. When my predecessor arrived in Britain he famously kissed the ground and later declared: 'This fair land, once a distant outpost of the pagan world, has become, through the preaching of the Gospel, a beloved and gifted portion of Christ's vineyard.' Now it seems it is turning back to pagan ways … "Read the rest!
Producer: Hold on. Could we think of an alternative to "pagan"?
Pope: But that's what JP2 said …
Producer: It's just that we don't want to run the risk of opening up the whole thing about whether religious minorities should be allowed to do Thought for the Day.
Pope: What if I say the word in Latin?
Producer: Great. Most of the Radio 4 audience did classics, and it'll sound more pious. It's a religious slot, after all. OK, do continue your holiness.
Pope: "The forces of secularism … "
Producer: Ah, we can't be seen to be bashing secularists.
Pope: "Dark forces"?
Producer: Could be misconstrued.
Pope: "The enemies of Christianity"?
- The statue of Our Lady of the Taper will be taken to London to be blessed by the Pope (BBC News, July 27, 2010):
[Pope Benedict] will bless and light the taper candle in the hand of the Virgin Mother.
The ceremony will take place at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday 18 September 2010.
The idea for the statue's pilgrimage to London came from Rev Father Jason Jones, who is the Rector of the National Shrine.
- The Pope’s visit to Glasgow in September will boost the city’s economy by £4.25 million (The Herald, July 26, 2010). Adds Scott Taylor, chief executive of Glasgow City Marketing Bureau: " “While the visit will bring £4.25m into the city, the real benefit lies in perhaps a billion people seeing Glasgow on the television and seeing that we are a vibrant and welcoming city."
- The Catholic Church in Scotland is defending the £20 "Pilgrim Pass" to attend the papal mass (BBC News. July 26, 2010):
The Pilgrim Pass includes a pack with information about the visit and a CD.In a July 26 letter to all priests of the Diocese of Paisley, Bishop Philip Tartaglia encouraged creative fundraising for those who couldn't meet the costs out of their parish budget (Catholic News Agency, July 26, 2010).
Scottish Catholic Church spokesman Peter Kearney insisted it did not mean people were being forced to pay to see the Pontiff.
"Any costs involved are to cover logistics like transport," he said.
"We have negotiated with bus companies to make sure that people can travel on designated buses from every single part of the country.
"All people are being asked to do is make a contribution through their parishes to cover those obvious and real expenses."
- Pilgrims at Pope's Birmingham Mass 'decided by draw' Raffles and draws will be held by Catholic churches to decide who attends the Pope's Mass in Birmingham. (BBC News. July 25, 2010).
- A lookalike of the Protestant Reformation leader John Knox will welcome Pope Benedict to Scotland. Mike Merrit reports for the Daily Record (UK) July 25, 2010:
The actor has been hired by the Catholic Church to play the leader of Scotland's Protestant Reformation in a pageant of the country's historical figures. ..."I can only think that someone in the Catholic Church has taken leave of their senses and clearly has no concept of Knox's theology", muses Martin Hannan (Edinburgh Evening News July 27, 2010):
Knox's surprise inclusion by Catholic Church leaders follows accusations that this year's 450th anniversary of the Reformation is being ignored by the Scottish Government.
The Reformation of 1560 revoked the Pope's authority in Scotland and banned Catholic Mass. ...
A Church of Scotland spokesman said: "It is a sign of a healthy nation that diversity within the Christian community is something to be celebrated as opposed to a source of division and struggle.
"It is a gift to those of us of a Protestant persuasion that by including this figure, the Catholic Church is contributing to the celebrations of the Reformation."
The man himself smashed "graven images" in churches across Scotland, and never sat for a portrait. He would find the prospect of a mummer playing him in a Papal cavalcade utterly offensive, and I suspect more than a few Protestants and not a few Catholics will be angered by this patronising gesture.
Saturday, July 31, 2010
Posted by Christopher Blosser at 12:40 AM