Sunday, 23 January 2011

It Shouldn't be Allowed

What shouldn't be allowed? Godchildren growing up, that's what. How can a Godson of mine be having a 50th birthday? But he is, and it was fun. The disco was a bit hard on the eardrums last evening, but today's pub lunch was great. You might like to see the birthday boy himself, with his dad... (dad is on the right)

Here is his lovely sister (flown in from Oz for the occasion) with one of their nephews.

Now all this happened in Tunbridge Wells, so Jane and I had to sort out somewhere for Mass; and we went to St Augustine's, a large modern church where even for the first 'quiet' evening mass at 5.30 on Saturday there were a hundred or so of us present. The celebrant was a Nigerian priest, and the preacher a Deacon. He spoke about Christian Unity, but seemed to have the impression that the Ordinariate was a symptom of division in the Catholic Church. I tried to reassure him after Mass that this was the very reverse of the truth.

Since we are in Unity Week, we thought we should visit an Anglican Church, and hit on that typical middle-of-the road C of E parish church, St Barnabas' (proprietor, the Revd Ed Tomlinson). His Hon Assistant, who is also Chaplain to the Guards (and a lawyer to boot) celebrated, and Fr Ed preached. It was very good meeting old friends afterwards over Birthday Cake and wine, celebrating Margaret's 18th (or had Fr E misheard and was it actually her 80th?) In reality, she looked about halfway between the two. Here is Fr Ed discussing the finer points of his phone; which, you may be surprised to learn, takes photographs. Finally, to cheer everyone up, here is another version of the master blogger smiling to camera, with his follow priest modestly in the background. They have taken quite a battering over recent weeks, and it is good to see them holding up so well; but most of the congregation are hugely supportive and (as I learned in conversation with several of them) very ready to make the step which Jane and I took last week and accept the Holy Father's offer.


  1. I'm mortified that you had that experience in Tunbridge Wells at St Augustine's. I know you are no stranger to controversy, but it was unfortunate that you should have to experience it a day after your reception.
    Put it down to puzzlement, perhaps ignorance, rather than hostility. I have heard overwhelmingly positive things about the Ordinariate from my colleagues, and I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you, congratulate you, and promise you my prayers at this most important time.

  2. No problem, dear Father; I think we all have a lot to learn (and teach) about the Ordinariate!

  3. Shouldn't +Edwin be Mr Edwin - or do old habits die hard!

  4. Quite right; but Google is not letting me change my name, and AOL insists my site remains bishedwin.... Edwin (Mr)