EAST Sunday at West Norwood I was privileged to witness a most unusual form of retreat. It began with family Mass at 9 a.m.: fathers. mothers and children all uniting at the Communion rail. At 12.15 p.m. the fathers returned. 50 strong, for a special conference and then retired to free their wives for the afternoon. At 3 p.m. the children, seven to 12. arrived for a special sermon and were then stuffed with buns in the parish hall. While they' were guzzling. their mothers came to Church for their part of the retreat. Benediction followed and the babies in arms were hurried forward to receive a blessing and a medal. They retired screaming and their place was taken by more than 70 teen-agers whose conference ended with a social in the parish hall. This was the third parish family day at West Norwood and all to whom I spoke agreed that it was a worthwhile experiment which had come to stay. Some old parishoners, now living outside London returned to join their friends for family day.
THREE or four years ago it leas our privilege to gise the first mention of a proposed retreat for priests' housekeepers. Many turned up for the day of recollection but others disapproved of the suggestion and one or two priests sere hostile to the scheme. The pioneers plodded on and have held several retreats and meetings since. Now the Guild of Our lady and St. Joseph has been established, and with ecclesiastical approval has set tip its constitutions in print Its aims are "to foster in its mem hers the vocational aspect of their work and to unite them by means of prayer, mutual help and encouragement." Priests are allowed to join as honorary members. Among other simple rules the housekeeper members promise to say the Angelus twice daily for the parish the) help to serve.
SODALITY OF OUR LADY
BOTH the Director of the World Federation of Sodalities, Archbishop Joseph Ciawlina and the Vice-Director Fr. Louis Paulussen came recently from Rome to Southwell House. Archbishop Gawlina addressed meetings of English and Polish Sodalists stressing again and again the need
for lay initiative in modern times. As with so many Polish people His Grace has had a most varied and heroic career. He was born in German -occupied Poland and fought in the German and Turkish armies during the first World War. He was captured by the Australians. Later as a priest he was pastor of a very large mining parish in Poland before becoming Army Bishop. In this anxious office he was present at one disaster after another, the defeat of Poland, the fall of France, the Blitz in London, the attack on Monte Cassino. He was in Moscow with General Anders and later, in Washington, had an interview with President Roosevelt. Now as Director of the World Federation of Marian Sodalities, His Grace has no time for false sentimentality. He spoke scathingly of the slogan which tries to keep the Church out of politics and by politics means everything worth doing for justice and charity.
AMEXICAN priest studying in AMEXICAN priest studying in Rome and speaking with an American accent told me how he said Mass in Naples not long ago. The little server was interested in hint and asked him if he came front America. The priest replied,