LANCASTER'S THIRD BISHOP
By Mgr. Cyril Taylor
LANCASTER, Wednesday "COMPLE in Sacerdote tuo . . . rore sanctifica. (Make this Thy chosen priest perfect in Thy service; bestow on him the full measure of Thy glorious gifts, sanctify him with the dew of Thy heavenly unction.)" These words pronounced in ringing tones by the Archbishop Metropolitan of the North re-echoed in the vaulted roof of Lancaster's Gothic cathedral. Below a crowded and representative congregation knelt in rapt silence. It was exactly 34 minutes past eleven o'clock. And at that moment precisely the Right Reverend Brian C. Foley became a bishop, the third to occupy the See of Lancaster.
Within the edifice the scene was one of striking splendour. With typical Lancastrian thoroughness nothing had been spared to honour the new chief pastor. Gilbert Scott's magnificent triptych, the rich red of the vestments. the sombre purple of the bishops and prelates. the full tone of the organ in the hands of Mr. J. H. Reginald Dixon, and the exquisite singing of the clergy choir, directed by Fr. Bernard Lockwood, combined to make it an occasion of unique solemnity.
CAPACITY CROWDS It seemed the only thing lacking was accommodation. The six hundred regular seats had been augmented to the utmost capacity of the space available. But it was bound to be inadequate. No minster is equal to so rare a liturgical event.
Built in 1859, St. Peter's was a large and dignified parish church for the relatively few Catholics of the county town. Now it serves .3,000 parishioners and is the mother of three other parishes in the district. It became the cathedral when the diocese was created in 1924. This is the fourth consecration to take place there.
One felt there was something singularly congruous about the selection of the Bishops of Salford and Brentwood to assist Archbishop Heenan as co-consecrators. They had each been the superior of the new bishop in his native diocese. None could have a better appraisal of his worth. They were joined by Bishop Pearson of Sinda, and their Lordships of Middlesbrough, Hcxham and Newcastle, and Menevic Bishop Bright, Auxiliary of Birmingham; Mgr. J. J. Kelly. V.G.. representing Bishop Dwyer of Leeds: Mgr. Grasar, Bishop-elect of Shrewsbury; the Abbot of Ampleforth and the Rectors of Ushaw, Up Holland and Oscott . . .
It looked as though the full complement of clergy, diocesan and regular, priests and prelates had assembled for the occasion. The 23 religious Orders of women and the three communities of Brothers were also liberally represented, as well as the civic authorities. Special places were reserved for the new bishop's relatives including two brothers and three sisters and an 80-year-old uncle, brother of the Bishop's father. There. too, were a group of the new Bishop's former parishioners who had travelled from Essex: Mgr. Shanahan, Mgr. Howell and Canon Hurley (Educational Representative) all travelled up from Mgr. Foley's former diocese.
The complicated ceremonial was carried through with pleasing efficiency under the supervision of Mgr. Shaun Monaghan. Fr. Anthony Bullen (Archbishop Heenan's secretary), Fr. David Murphy and Fr. Bernard Ivinson as Masters of Ceremonies. The entire clergy and congregation united in singing the Litanies. the Veni Creator, the Ordinary of the Mass (1X Cum Jubilo) and the Te Deum.
It is just seven weeks since the Holy See announced the appoint
Continued on page 8, col. 3 ment of 5I-years-old Canon Foley as Bishop of Lancaster. At that time he was parish priest of Holy Cross Church, Harlow, which he initiated six years ago. That was the third parish he had established and only a few months ago he volunteered to begin another new one at Harlow. He was elected to the Brentwood Chapter in 1959.
Although a southerner from Ilford in Essex, Bishop Foley will not feel a complete stranger in the north. He will find among his clergy contemporaries from both Ushaw and the English College. Rome. His new diocese was formed from the Liverpool Archdiocese and Ilexham and Newcastle by the Apostolic Constitution (Universalis Ecclesiae sollicitudo) of Pope Pius XI dated November 22, 1924. The first bishop was Abbot Thomas Wulstan Pearson. 0.S.B., consecrated on February 24. 1925, He was succeeded by Dr. Thomas Edward Flynn, parish priest of St. Mary's. Chorley, who was consecrated on July 24, 1939, On the same feast ten years later Bishop Thomas Pearson was consecrated as auxiliary.
The diocese of Lancaster is a suffragan of Liverpool and takes in north Lancashire, and the counties of Cumberland and Westmorland. It is one of the most varied in the country. It encompasses industrial centres like Pres ton and Barrow in Furness, isolated missions in the country and popular holiday resorts like Blackpool and the Lake District. It has a Catholic population of some 128,000 served by more than 250 priests including four religious Orders. There are 38 convents of nuns whose work extends to teaching. nursing, care of the aged and orphans. and contemplation.
After the consecration ceremony Bishop Foley was host at lunch to his fellow bishops and C lergy at the Arcadian Restaurant, Morecambe. The new Bishop proposed the toast of The Queen, Duke of Lan caster; the toast of the new Bishop was proposed by Archbishop Heenan supported by Bishop Pearson and by Mgr. Canon Howell of Brentssood.
During his address at the luncheon Bishop Foley announced that he had reappointed Mgr. Eaton as Vicar General of the
Lancaster diocese. a post he held under the late Bishop Flynn.
Later .iach of the priests was presented to the new Bishop by Mgr. Eaton.
• Bishop Foley has chosen for his motto: Da Mihi Animas cater(' Tolle (Give me souls. you take the rest). This was the motto of Cardinal Merry del Val, an alumnus of Ushaw, and the first three words of it were also the late Cardinal Griffin's motto.
LOOKING FOR ACTOTIS
THE Blackfriars Player, a newly-formed dramatic society attached to St. Dominic's, Newcastle, has almost everything except members.
The Prior of St. Dominic's has nlaceo a five-roomed house near the Priory at their disposal. and Tyne Tees Television have given them a donation of £25, hut actors and stage hands are needed before the group can present any plays.
Sorcerer's grandson is ordained
The grandson of a man who was a celebrated sorcerer before becoming a Christian has been ordained a priest by Bishop Leo D'Mello of Ajmer, India. He is Fr. Peter Baryawal, son of the village catechist of Mikhelpura.
70 years a priest
Dom Oswald Hall, 0.S.B., now in retirement at St. Wilfrid's, 13lyth, will celebrate his 70th year in the priesthood on June 19. Ile was parish priest at St. Oswald's, Wrekenton, for 45 years before his retirement.