The Catholic body in all the Universities throughout the country, which in the course of the next few years will be increasing in number, has grown by many thousands since before the war. This is true not only in the older Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, but perhaps even more so in what are known as the "red brick" Universities. This, in most cases, necessitates the appointment of a full-time Chaplain and the provision of a Chaplaincy, and if possible a Catholic Chapel for the use of both Graduates and Undergraduates. Unfortunately, this still appears to be regarded as a luxury rather than a necessity a.s indeed it is if the needs of Catholics in the Universities are to be catered for, and the views and opinions of Catholics are to be co-ordinated and given voice as a corporate body when the occasion arises.
This will of course cost money. but will be money well spent, and we cannot nowadays expect to provide Chaplains with sufficient private means for appointment to these posts as was the case in the years between the wars at the older Universities.
There is too the necessity for providing for the up-keep of the Chaplaincy itself, which would require an income in keeping with the size and importance of the University and the nbmber of Catholics for which it catered.
In my opinion, it is high time that some recognised scheme for the support of the Chaplaincies in all Universities was teamed, and 1 suggest that all schools, whose pupils arc fortunate enough to go to the Universities, should pay an annual per capita grant to the University Chaplaincy for each of their students during the time they are at the University. This would form a nucleus of a fund, which could he further augmented by a recognised subscription to be paid each term or year by the students themselves.
We can these days no longer expect those responsible for appointing Chaplains to the Universities to have to consider whether the priests selected for these important Appointments are able to support both themselves and the Chaplaincies out of their own private means or from the income they can earn from any outside work that they are able to fit in during the vacations. We must remember that the fifth Commandment of the Church applies equally to them as it does to our Parochial Clergy.
Francis Tolhurst Surrey
I am alarmed that such a reactionary and short-sighted opinion on the subject of a vernacular liturgy should have issued from so influential a quarter as St. Edmund's, Ware (Rev. H. J. Richards, February 8). Even more amazing is the writer's suggestion that we should repudiate the recommendations of the Council Fathers which have presumably been made under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. The rigidly conservative attitude maintained by So many in this country against the use of the vernacular in our liturgy is surely incomprehensible. As a convert. I can assure the Rev. Richards that a great number of English non-Catholics who are attracted to the Church are deterred from examining its claims more closely, simply because they feel that Latin is such a stumblingblock and allows little scope for active and oral participation in our principal form of public worship. Let's face it Dialogue Mass is still the exception rather than the rule.
We are taught that we must unite with the priest in offering the Holy Sacrifice. that we should not indulge in saying the Rosary and performing other private devotions during the celebration of Mass. But how many of us have come away from Mass with that unsatisfied feeling that most of our time has been spent in feverishly searching the missal for the right place while the priest raced inaudibly along pages ahead of us at breakneck speed. And can it be denied that the Mass of the Catechumens has lost its meaning and purpose? Surely this section of the Mass is intended to he a period of preparation and instruction, yet the Epistle and Gospel which are supposed to be addressed to the people are muttered at a frantic Apeed in an unknown tongue, while the speaker has his back to us. Then follows the necessary but timewasting procedure of reading the whole thing again in English from the pulpit, surely an admission in itself that the Latin version means nothing to the faithful?
Do our anti-vernacular compatriots ever stop to think that the Church makes its only appearance to most non-Catholics through their attendance at the baptisms weddings and funerals of Catholic relatives. Yet all too often these bewildered souls emerge from the church having understood not a word of the service. and feeling even more alienated from Catholicism than before.
Let us hope that the Council's concern for missionary activity both in pagan and "christian" lands will result in the longoverdue introduction of the vernacular into much of our liturgy. Obviously a Universal Church needs a universal language for its Councils and for the "master" copies of its liturgies and encyclicals, but it is utterly unrealistic that the entire Western Church should be obliged to retain the wholesale use of Latin merely to achieve uniformity with certain multi lingual communities in Africa and elsewhere. Catholic unity does not demand uniformity -surely the many and varied Eastern Rites prove that. Or would the Rev. Richards recommend that we Latinize them too?
By all means let us be cautious, let us never sacrifice valuable tradition unnecessarily, but for heaven's sake let us not impede the Church's missionary efforts at home and abroad by an obstinate and die-hard refusal to put first things first.
John F. Butler Watford, Herts.
May I ask Fr. Richard two questions? Firstly, why isn't the Mass celebrated today in the language Our Lord spoke, namely, Aramaic? Secondly, why did the Holy Ghost give the Apostles the "gift of tongues" so that everyone was able to hear in his own tongue the wonders of God?
And to put Fr. Richard correct on one point. For the first two centuries Greek was the language of the Mass. The New Testament except St. Matthew's Gospel was written in Greek, and goodness knows where the good Father got the idea that the Apostles went round the Mediterranean (the Greek-speaking mission fields) giving evening classes in Aramaic. 'I he Apostles preached the Gospel and "the wonders of God in the tongue of the people" in other words the vernacular.
C. K. Marsh Southend.
Your correspondent "Prudentia" chooses to make sport of what nevertheless remains a very real problem: how to resolve on the choice of language to be used in a vernacular liturgy in a country which is bi-lingual or multilingual. It is not necessary to go as far as Africa to find countries where a choice either way would prove invidious in the extreme.
Here in Wales there are parishes which are partly Welsh and partly English-speaking and where the choice of either language would cause serious offence. In fact, one. of the advantages which the Catholic Church hag in Wales is that its liturgy is in Latin, so that a Welsh convert cannot thereby be accused of going over to the "English Cause" I can assure your correspondents that this is a very serious consideration not lightly to be dismissed by those having the evangelization of a nation at heart.
R. 0. F. Wynne
Abergele, N. Wales.
Is it not time we had a Vernacular word for "vernacular"?
B. E. Obachter Chorley, Lancs.
Would it interest your readers to know what the Church is doing now in regard to animal welfare ?
As a result of appeals from The National Catholic Society for Animal Welfare in America, the Vatican has undertaken a symposium on animals, ranging from a collection of the Church's teachings on the animal world to a study of animal protective laws and humane organisations throughout the world. Clarification of Catholic teaching on animals which will serve to make Catholics throughout the world aware of mankind's duties towards God's animals is the purpose of the study.
The symposium is being undertaken by the Sacred Congregation of the Council. Father Ambrose Agius, 0.S.B., NCSAW Vice-President. and Father Basil Wrighton of England represented the NCSAW at a conference held at the Vatican on October 2 during which work on the unprecedented symposium on animals was started.
Archbishop Pietro Palazzini, Secretary of the Sacred Congregation of the Council, was chairman of the conference and assigned various topics of the study to Church scholars and authorities in the animal welfare field. Seven university professors were designated to cornpile the Church's teachings on animals within the framework of an outline written by the NCSAW.
The symposium will be published by the Vatican in numerous languages and made available to the clergy and laity throughout the world to call attention to the Church's teachings on animals and their need for protection from world wide cruelties.
Mgr. McWilliams (President of the Society) said of the Vatican study: "This undertaking alone more than justifies all of the hope humanitarians have for the usefulness of the NCSAW. With the Holy See turning its attention to animals and their pathetic need for protection, we can look forward, at last, to a great change in thinking towards animals. The Church has been calling for the merciful treat merit of God's animals for centuries but those teachings have been generally unknown or unheeded. . . Let us have every hope that the project will mark the beginning of an era in which animals will be respected as creatures of God who deserve and urgently need man's respect and help".
T. M. Bertram, M.B.E. Sornerton, Somerset.
May I raise a voice of protest at two unfortunate practices which have been adopted in some parishes recently?
The first is the habit of taking the second collection, unlike the first, starting from the back of the church. This seems to be based on the assumption that the whole congregation would rush out before the end of Mass to avoid contributing, unless first cut off from the door by these curious tactics.
Secondly, we find ushers who force their attentions upon all latecomers, and who in the course of conducting them to seats which they could find for themselves, stand for long periods with their backs to the altar, and never once find it necessary to make the normal genuflections. Am I alone in finding this both distracting and irreverent?
J. Michael Farrar Cambridge.
I have just listened to a priest who preached about the Gospel before he read it. So often we hear the Gospel and then listen to a sermon which leaves us confused. How good it was to have the words of the priest clarified by the strong words of the Evangelist! Would that this could become a more common practice Charles Hughes Brighton, Sussex.
WAR ON WAUGH
I also am cancelling my order for your newspaper. Any paper that can afford to be made a fool of by Auberon Waugh 'can certainly do without my subscription.
His retort to Fr. Kenny was 100 per cent meaningless. Did neither Editor nor 'Commentator' observe this? What is the point of Fr. Kenny taking the trouble? What is the point of buying the CATHOLIC HERALD?
The whole conception of employing this person is irresponsible and above all deeply stupid. I suppose you wanted to show that you could be frivolous and daring too. What confidence can one have in an editorial policy which commits this sort of naivete.
Julian David Buck fastleigh, Devon.
You hired young Waugh in the nick of time. I was about to give up the wishy-washy CATHOLIC HERALD.
P. R. Ward
I would recommend to Mr. Auber on Waugh Maritain's 'Elementary Logic'. He replies to Earl Attlee's "1 do not think that power depends just on armaments, wealth or
population our moral influence is still very great" by stating that "unfortunately, power does depend on armaments, wealth and population and nothing else, unless, perhaps, the will to fight".
Following the same mode of reasoning I also affirm that the Holy Father having no power (armaments, wealth and the will to fight) therefore has no moral influence.
This also applies to St. Philip Neri, my P.P. and Mrs. Flanagan who walks her six kids to Mass through the snow at 8 a.m. on a Sunday Morning. If the shade of G.K. will excuse me : .
Talk about the spires and steeples and the cash you get therefor. but the power of Christian peoples Chuck It Waugh!
T. S. Mann Northampton.
I would like to congratulate Mr. Auberon Waugh on his courage in speaking out on the subject of had sermons. I fear there will be letters accusing him of being `anti-clerical', but the truth I suspect is far other. We who criticise our priests in the matter of their sermons do so not because we ate 'anti' but because we are 'pro' clerical. We love our priests. We know how hard they work for us. We cannot bear to see them bring themselves and the religion they serve into disrepute as they most certainly do when their sermons are incoherent and untheological,
(Mrs.) P. M. O'Connor London, W.K.
Ferocious Mr. Waugh may be, but I think he is saying a number of needful things which few others will say. I, for one, hope that he will be able to reprint his CA'THOLIC HERALD articles in a book or a booklet, and at a price within reach of those of us who are not millionaires. When a man has something to say, a record of it in book form helps.
John V. Simcox London, N.W.5.
God bless M. Auberon Waugh! His column has enlivened your always lively paper 100 per cent.! 1 have taken the C.H. regularly for some 30 years and have always enjoyed it, but never so much as now.
(Mrs.) H. W. Arnott
'Convert' could do no better than invest in Lenten Meditations, a little book by Father David Greenstock, consisting of a meditation based on the Gospel for every day in Lent. It is published by Geoffrey Chapman Ltd. and costs 10/6.
P. A. Mahoney
I should like to recommend The Jewels of Lent, a short meditation, which is both devotional and instructive, for each day of Lent. It is published by Our Lady's Catechists Carmelite Monastery, Bramshola Liphook (Price 3,6, postage 6d).
Ursula Morrison Worthing, Sussex.
May I recommend Fr. Michael Hollings' Purple Times and Fr. Gerald Vann's The Son's Course? Both are currently available as paperbacks.
"Another Convert" London. W.2.
May I recommend to anyone who has little time to give to Lenten reading The Abbe de Tourville's Letters of Direction, published at 4/by Deere Press. A. C. Black, Ltd., 4-6 John Square, London W.I.
Winifred Easton N. Cheam, Surrey.
"Convert" could not do better than Approach to the Crucified. Hubert Van Zeller, 0.S.B 6s. If more is needed, then What Jesus SaW from the Cross, A. D. Sertillenges, O.P. 9'6d. and The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Dr. Pierre Barbet 16s. All are available from the C.T.S. Bookshop, 28a. Ashley Place, London, S.W.1.
Violet M. Fitzgerald London, S.W.1.
Is there some way in which our giving honour to the Martyrs, and promoting their Cause, can be coupled with public and official acts of reparation for acts of persecution carried out by our Catholic forbears?
James Welch East Twickenham, Middx.
UNITY AT WORK
I read with much interest Michael Gedge's suggestions (February 15) for fostering unity at work.
Having had considerable office experience, which has entailed working with colleagues of all denominations, I can heartily endorse that religious differences are seldom a barrier to unity as mutual Christian respect and love invariably succeed in winning through.
On the contrary, it is as Michael (ledge states that the real difficulty lies in ". . . behaving like a Christian in the ordinary moral issues." This is especially apparent when trying to pursue a personal active apostolate with those who are virtually devoid of any strong religious convictions, that seemingly insurmountable stumbling blocks are encountered.
Torn, as is often the case, between Our Blessed Lord's example in his dealings with the Pharisees and the "turning of the other cheek", the earnest layman finds himself in most delicate situations and needs-indeed hankers for-spiritual help and guidance, not only in directing his apostolate towards the very worthwhile goal of unity, but to sow seeds for conversion and to ensure that he himself is fortified in his own interior life.
Recently, through the medium of The Sunday Times, I learned of the "Opus Dei" movement, and it occured to me when reading Michael Gedge's letter that an apostolate as envisaged by him, may already be carried out by "Opus Dei".
I would very much like to know if this is the case, and should it not be so, for readers to develop and put into practise the thoughts expressed by Michael Gedge.
Joyce Z. Feuillade London, S.W.I I.
The unexpected release of Archbishop Slipyj by the Russians is an answer to fervent prayer. and surely Our Lady of Vladimir has helped in this wonderful step towards easing tension between East and West.
Yet, although this is a most encouraging gesture, there is still a long way to go. as the "Church of Silence" Exhibition, now in Rome, will remind all Christians (including our Separated Brethren) as it tours the world.
Meditation on the terrible story of persecution by Communists. which it depicts, should turn our thoughts to China. If we are not already praying for this great land and its millions of souls, why not start now? As the beginning of a vast campaign of prayer can readers tell us about any pictures, statues, shrines or relics which are sacred to Chinese Christians?
For instance, among all her titles, is the Blessed Virgin addressed as "Our Lady of China". or "Our Lady of Peking", or of any other Chinese town or village?
Knowledge like this, and anything else about Chinese Christianity would inspire our prayers and serve to illustrate that Faith moves mountains-even Chinese Marxist ones.
"Apostle of Silence" Falmouth, Cornwall.
On reading Miss Fitzgerald's letter about the poor response to the course on Theology for Lay People. I felt that the key to her disappointment lay in the phrase: 'Every Catholic living within asonable reach of Westminster'.
I have met many Catholics who have have searched in vain for a course of theology. They are anxious to deepen that knowledge of the faith which they have received at school or from books on Catholic doctrine. If the course recommended by Miss Fitzgerald were made available in booklet form then many would-be theologians would have the opportunity of studying this science.
Doris Simpson Sheffield, 11.
Let Communists, C.N.D. and "New Frontiersmen" make their own propaganda against British and other European deterrents.
Your editorial ("Independent Folly", February 1) rests on the fallacy that even if our overseas commitments were guaranteed by NATO, which they are not, a responsible British Government could entrust vital interests like Kuwait and Brunei oil. which may well become the object of Communist blackmail, to the willingness of the United States, to whom they are less vital, to risk nuclear annihilation.
That would be to ask and expect too much of our ally.
John Biggs-Davison, M.P. Home of Commons.
Gordon Rowland is correct in his opinion that children who are rightly instructed in matters of sex, are not so likely to develop an unhealthy interest in pornographic literature, but he is quite wrong in assuming that no start has been made by teachers in dealing with the problem. The answer lies, not in teachers relieving parents of their duty, but in assisting them to fulfil it.
Just last Friday, at the end of an "Open Meeting" at this school, parents were addressed by the Parish Priest on their obligation of giving sex instruction to their children, and suggestions were made as to how the task could be approached. A number of pamphlets related to the subject were on display, and nearly one hundred Were bought. Similar help is given in Many Schools.
Except in a few necessitous eases, teachers have neither the time nor opportunity to give the private and individual instruction to each child that is necessary. But surely the very fact of the C.T.F. launching an attack on pornography shows that children's interest in sex is recognised. My brier and infrequent visits to bookshops leaves me in no doubt as to the urgency of the problem. The C.T.F. should receive the backing of all right-minded adults in an effort to cleanse the bookstalls of Britain. It is a poor reflection on the moral standards of the British Public, that they tolerate, and even patronize such indecent literature.
Sister Mary Ursula Headmistress, St. Peter's Primary School, Dagenham.