The Catholic chaplaincy at Bristol University has been criticised by Bishop Rudderham of Clifton for its unconventional liturgies.
He told Fr. Maurice Keane, S.J.. the chaplain, that his attempts to make the Mass more relevant to his congregation infringed rubrics laid down by the Holy See.
In particular, Bishop Rudderhain complained that Fr. Keane had used readings which were not taken from Scripture, that he had changed the order of ' certain parts of the Mass. and that some of the eucharistic prayers were not "official."
Er. Keane. 38, has been chaplain at the university for four years, since his ordination. Sunday congregations at the chaplaincy have risen since then to 400. at three Masses, although the chaplaincy was built for only 70.
Fr. William Mitchell, secretary to Bishop Rudderham, said: -Although Fr. Keane's approach might make the Mass more rele vant to some people, it is not what the Holy See had in mind. Fr. Keane has been asked to fall into. line.
"There is a very lively group at the chaplaincy, and the chaplain's service; are very attractive and
Cie\ ant to different groups. But this is mainly because of the marvellous person that the chaplain is. His services do not depend On 'giminicks'.
Fr. Mitchell agreed that Fr. Keane would possibly not regard his liturgies as "gimmicks".
It is believed that in his interview with Fr. Keane, Bishop Rudderham also made reference to the new cathedral which is due to open in Clifton on June 29. It will cost £500.000, and there is a feeling in some quarters that this money, which was a gift, could have been employed in a different way.
There have also been suggestions that the
parishioners for whom it is being built could have been accommodated by existing buildings in the area., both Catholic and Anglican.
But the Bishop's secretary pointed out that the old procathedral -was in a bad state of repair, and that the Bishop had found it fully necessary to build in the Clifton area.
Fr. Mitchell said parishioners had not been consulted on the decision to build, nor should they have been consulted.. since the building costs had been covered by an anonymous donation.
Parishioners at the procathedral, lie said, were delighted at their new building.