A diary of people and places
"CLIMB EVERY MOUNTAIN", is an exhortation in The Sound of Music, but 70year-old Fr. E. L. Klimeck, 0.P., a New Zealander, has been taking it literally. And his cornpanion on the trip is a 21-foot high statue of Our Lady of Fatima. Their latest dual conquest is Kilimanjaro.
Adventure is nothing new to Fr. Klimeck—he has been around the world three times. But his devotion to the message of Fatima is fairly recent. After serving as an R.A.F. chaplain during the last war, he started preaching Fatima as a cure to the endless war-uponwar life we lead.
"After my second visit to Fatima I resigned as Prior of Leicester to go on the road with a little van decorated with the rosary," he told me recently in a letter. The van carried the statue which Fr. Klimeck had brought hack from Fatima.
"For two years I travelled from Land's End to John O'Ciroats with great success." From England to Malta went the priest, and he continued the Fatima crusade. "1 placed the little statue on a vacant site covered with bomb debris. People were attracted to it and little by little a fine church and priory grew up on the spot." Since Malta Fr. Klimeck has been Fatima pioneering and mountaineering in Africa, starting with Devil's Peak on Table Mountain. Now he is in Kenya where his exploits still attract attention to his devotion. Ile climbed the peak because he wanted "her to earn the title of 'Our Lady of Africa.' " He also became one of the oldest men to climb Kilimanjaro.
A N EXCELLENT arrange-(11. ment has led to the display at the Victoria and Albert Museum of the 500-year-old Limerick crozier and mitre.
Bishop Murphy of Limerick arranged two years ago to have the historic articles properly repaired. The British Museum has renovated the crozier, and the Victoria and Albert the mitre, on condition they should be displayed when repaired, These rare examples of Gothic Goldsmith's work made in Ireland in 1418 will be exhibited until November. The two pieces bear the name of their original owner, Bishop Cornelius Collor O'Dea. bishop front 1400-1426, and the mitre supplies the name of the maker, Thomas O'Carryd.
A spokesman for Bishop Murphy told mc that they are occasionally on display in Limerick Cathedral. but they were last seen in England during a special loan in 1862.
Well worth a visit if you are in London and enjoy exquisite craftsmanship.
WANTED — two crib sets which will measure up to the high artistic standards of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. The Ministry has now indicated that previous cribs used by the Catholic Aviation Guild at London Airport to put Christ back into Christmas each year cannot be used again.
A Guild committee member, Mr. Leonard Hay, of 54 Rosefield Road, Staines, Middlesex, explained the position. The London Airport authorities are very proud of their modern passenger buildings there and are anxious that the general high standard he maintained. This will involve replacing the present crib sets.
"It is out of the question for us to be able to buy new sets this year," said Mr. Hay, "and it would be a great pity if the Holy Season were allowed to pass without the cribs to serve as a reminder of its sacred origin. But it may come to that. if we do not get two good sets of figures."
He added that it would also be very embarrassing for them to have to refuse an offer of a crib that did not come up to standard.
Every Christmas since 1955 thousands upon thousands of passengers passing through the two passenger termini at London Airport have been reminded of the Christmas message by threequarter-life-size cribs.
It was in 1959 that the Knights of St. Columba of Hounslow, who started the venture, handed over the cribs to the Guild, which has since carried on the good work. It has more than 250 members drawn from the airport staff and during the past few years it has raised more than £450 for the projected chapel there.