Message from Fr. Con


These final 7 days of this month contain the following significant Feasts or Memorials:
September 23rd: the Memorial of St. Pius of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio). He died in 1968 and was canonised in 2002. He had the stigmata – the marks of the five wounds of Our Lord. (St. Francis of Assisi, his spiritual father, had similarly received these marks in the Middle Ages. St. Francis’ picture features in our side-chapel).
September 24th: the Memorial of Our Lady of Walsingham: In 1061, in the Norfolk village of Walsingham, a pious noble lady (Richeldis de Faverches) had apparitions from Our Lady. One of these visions gave her a depiction of the house in Nazareth in which the Angel Gabriel had appeared to young Mary, saying how she had been pre-eminently chosen by God to bear His Only Begotten Son. Richeldis was instructed to have built at Walsingham a holy house, based on the one she had seen in the apparition. Therefore Walsingham is often called the Nazareth of England.
September 29th: the Feast of the Archangels – Michael, Gabriel and Raphael. ‘Michael’ means ‘Like unto God’; ‘Gabriel’ means ‘Strength of God’; ‘Raphael’ means ‘Healing of God’.
September 30th: the Memorial of St. Jerome – from the 4th century. He has been especially renowned for translating the Bible into Latin. In later life he settled in Bethlehem and was famed for his commentaries on the Bible.
Padre Pio’s Healing Prayer is attached to this newsletter. – especially poignant in view of the pandemic, and of much more besides.
Walsingham emphasizes England being Our Lady’s Dowry. How appropriate that the great Bible scholar Jerome should be living at Bethlehem in later life- where the Word became flesh – the Lord the Person Who is our very Life & Salvation!