Thursday, 28 February 2013

A strange day

Went to Cheltenham today, intending to spend half an hour at St Gregory's church before the Blessed Sacrament in Solemn Exposition, to pray especially for Pope Benedict and for a holy and lion-hearted successor.  They always have Solemn Exposition there on Thursdays, from 10 to 3, and had advertised it as usual in the parish newsletter.  But sadly, when I arrived, I found that there was no Exposition.  I don't know the reason; perhaps the clergy had all been called to Clifton Cathedral for the Mass being offered there this morning in thanksgiving for the Pope. 

Instead of my half-hour of contemplation, I prayed the Stations of the Cross. They are particularly fine in St Gregory's, and very moving.  I was strongly aware today that right to the end Our Lord Jesus was being abused and mocked.  And it seems to be that way too with the closing days of this pontificate.

The Catholic Herald is doing a live blog of this last day.  I will close with this little item, which I found very poignant:
11.58 Earlier this morning Pope Benedict XVI said farewell individually to cardinals, heads of various Vatican departments and Mgr Guido Marini, the papal master of ceremonies.
What a star Mgr Marini has been, in the best sense of the word!  Not flamboyant, but good, and anxious to give the greatest dignity to the papal liturgies. I hope he continues in his post in the next pontificate.

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