Page 6, 6th April 1956

6th April 1956
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Page 6, 6th April 1956 — TOWN AND COUNTRY is best THERE could hardly have been
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Locations: London, Antwerp

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TOWN AND COUNTRY is best THERE could hardly have been

a greater contrast between the character of the new liturgy as I participated in it on .Good Friday and on Holy Saturday. Yet both were equally moving in their owo way. On Good Friday I was in the room which serves as a church in Edenbridge. Kent. There. 100 or so of country folk, one in dungarees, massed into the tiny space, forming very much of a living community. The Liturgy itself had, shall we say. a strictly utilitarian air, hut the Passion and the prayers were read in English by a member of the congregation and a sermon was preached. It was spontaneous early Christianity. On Holy Saturday I went to the French Church in Leicester Square, where the contrast was between the recollection and reverence in the dim lights of the crypt, where the new fire was blessed, and the neon-lighting, crowds and even raucous voices outside. As much as possible was said in French, with careful explanations of the meaning of each ceremony. Once again the emphasis was on congregation participation and understanding. Seen from the gallery. the candles of the large congregation in the darkened church made a moving sight. and when the great organ thundered and the hells rang at the Gloria, we all knew Easter was with us again.

Used papers

HAVE you ever picked up a copy of the " Christian Science Monitor " or a " Jehovah's Witness " leaflet which you have found lying about'? It is difficult not to be interested in the unknown and just see what they are talking about. Well. the same applies on our side, and I often wonder why we do not do more to leave Catholic papers and pamphlets where they will be seen and probably read out of idle curiosity. Look at it that way, and one feels sorry to think of the number of Catholic papers that just disappear each week after their first reader has done with them. And, apart from that kind of home distribution, there is the demand from the missions. A typical letter—this time from Fr. V. Sebastian, St. Francis Xavier's Church, Mandalay. Burma—says: " I most sincerely thank all readers who have been sending me their Catholic papers and magazines. I need them still, though not more in number. The papers are circulated among the Catholics of Mandalay and adjacent areas." We hav-e a number of addresses in our C.H. Forwarding Scheme, and missionaries who would like papers, etc., are asked to let us know.

Four legs better than two

THOUGH admirable members

of the Order of the Holy Sepulchre are among my personal friends, I feel sure that neither they nor others will be hurt if I reproduce this extremely amusing paragraph from a letter in which the writer hopes for their more regular appearance in Westminster Cathedral: "The newly created Knights of the Holy Sepulchre should, and would, be prominent, but as I understand this Order, it is of equestrian nature. Alas, hardly one of those recently invested, including the two ladies, has ever been astride a horse, a fact which considerably reduces their importance." mR. DANIEL COUNIHAN, the author of children's stories, tells me that he has just visited the Guildhall collection of London relics. It includes an interesting display of pilgrims' signs and badges and also some lead mortuary crosses from graves on the site of the old Greyfriars. Among the exhibits is also a 14thcentury Italian head of Our Lord, in bronze. rather larger than life size. Such relics of Catholic London are grouped together in a case labelled " Medieval Religion." " So now we know where we are," was Mr. Counihan's comment when he told me about it.

Liturgy on the cheap

"T HE Mass is not to he treated as merely a private devotion either by the priest or the people." This sentence struck me as I glanced through Fr. Fenelly's Irish Catholic Truth Society pamphlet " The Mass and the People—Our Sacrifice." Fr. Fennelly is a pioneer in Ireland in encouraging the people to offer the Mass corporately in accordance with the Pope's own recommendations in Mediator Del. This little pamphlet, costing only a few pence, is an absolute " must "—dare I say especially for priests?

German builders

T AM delighted to be able to say -IL that my paragraph about the German builders in Antwerp was incorrect, What happened. I am now assured, was that a Belgian woman said to the builders: " It's all very well your working for us now like this, but in a couple of years you'll come back and destroy what you are making." As I was first told, it was a German builder who boasted of corning back to destroy his work.

Miss K. Pincha.rd

OWING to a printing error, a recent brief notice of the death of Miss Pinchard, of St. Raphael's, Brownshill, was entitled " Miss Pilchard." Many of those who knew her or had derived benefit from the calendars, drawings and poems she sent out may therefore have missed the news of her death. " Her last years were rich and happy," writes a friend, " and a source of joy to those in daily contact with her whom she sustained with her rare gift for companionship." Among the notes she left were the following words from an " Old Woman's Song " (early Irish):

My body drops

Slowly but sure towards the abode we know

When God's High Son takes from me all my props.

It will be time to go.

A number of her cards will be published posthumously and can be obtained from St. Raphael's, Brownshill, Stroud. I still have by me her little booklet " The Story of a Little Bookrack " with its suggestions for those who have not yet started a bookrack in their church or lost interest in the one they have. I should have mentioned it while she was alive, but perhaps there are still some copies available at St. Raphael's,

TV THE Stations of the • Cross from St. Dominic's Priory in London was a striking instance of what can be done from the resources of a single parish. Indeed, it was hard to believe that such precision and timing in mime could be achieved without professional help.

One trembles to think of the amount of rehearsal needed, even though the combination of reverence and significance in the shaping of the Stations made it evident that the producer thoroughly well knew his business.

But all this was a means to an end. It was the end that counted: the living commemoration and prayer within the church, conveyed, as it must have been, to the hearts of many viewers.

Fr. Illtud Evans is 'to be congratulated on showing two things: first, what an ordinary parish can do—what it might do liturgically if proper training were given; second, how the television repays, not only in religion but in many other spheres, the presentation of the living, genuine article, as opposed to the cult of the expert and the star.

rilWO recent plays which I have -Iseen were of particular interest to viewers who see in eternal realities issues of greater dramatic interest than variations on the love triangle or homicide.

"The Return," by Brigid Boland. gave a near-authentic picture of an elderly nun who has realised her lack of true vocation. The first part was first-class and if the second faded away, well, even that was necessarily written into the situation.

" Outward Bound " is an old stager. but the resources of TV seemed to give the passage between life and eternity an enhanced verisimilitude. So much so that the advertisements added to the viewer's sense of the idiocy of our contemporary values and might have been part of the play.—M. B.

Why I don't criticise

1016 ADIO. I have been told that -1-1.) I always say nice things about Radio and never really criticise anything. This is, I suppose. because, having such a choice of stations to listen to, there is nearly always something satisfying for us to hear.

I did intend this week listening to things I really dislike but my courage failed me. I just could not bring myself to listen to "Show Band Show," for instance, which happens every Saturday after the one o'clock news. The opening announcement, with its blare of noise, is as much as we have ever been able to stomach.

On a higher level, the composer Bartok has always been a strong dislike of ours.

This. I know, is a little unfair and we are now trying to improve our ways. Andor Foldes gave a very helpful talk in " Music Magazine " the other Sunday about the composer's piano music. He is also giving a series of recitals of these works in the Third programme. He told us, however, that Bartok's son. Peter, did not take kindly to his piano lessons. so Papa decided to compose a fresh piece for him for every lesson. Peter still did not care for his music lessons.

Joan Newton.




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