YOUR GUIDE TO THE VISIT OF THE SAINT’S HEART
ST JOHN VIANNEY INTRODUCED BY BISHOP MARK DAVIES OF SHREWSBURY PAGES 11-14
England and Wales to see sharp rise in ordinations
BY MADELEINE TEAHAN AND FRANCESCA GILLETT
THE NUMBER of priestly ordinations across England and Wales is expected to almost double by 2013, while the number of seminarians in the Archdiocese of Southwark alone has more than doubled since 2005.
Figures show that the number of ordinations in England and Wales is expected to reach 38 in 2013, compared with 20 in 2011, while the Archdiocese of Southwark currently has 26 seminarians in contrast with only 10 in 2005.
The Southwark Vocations website states that a “campaign of prayer for vocations has coincided with a dramatic increase in the number of men coming forward as potential candidates for the priesthood”.
Fr Stephen Langridge, vocations director for the archdiocese, said that since being appointed part-time in 2005 his team had introduced a range of initiatives to encourage vocations throughout the archdiocese.
Fr Langridge said: “We have produced prayer cards for the rosary, of which 40,000 have gone out”, as well as “encouraging all parishes to hold Holy Hours of prayer for vocations”.
He explained that parishes across the archdiocese offer at least one Holy Hour a year,
A campaign of prayer for vocations has coincided with a major increase in men coming
For the latest
Catholic news, visit CatholicHerald.co.uk while others, such as Our Lady of the Annunciation church in Addiscombe, south London, hold prayer hours for vocations on a weekly or even daily basis.
Fr Langridge also cited the Quo Vadis discernment group as another significant initiative, and a summer pilgrimage offering support for young people as they discern God’s will in their lives.
Fr Langridge said the diocese had “moved from a model of recruitment to discernment”, emphasising that all young Catholics have a vocation and must be “encouraged to become better disciples of Christ”.
Archbishop Peter Smith of Southwark appointed Fr Langridge as full-time director of vocations for the archdiocese earlier this month. It is the first time in 30 years that this has been a full- time post.
The appointment follows the launch of the National Vocations Framework, which has been adopted by the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales to “promote a culture of vocation”.
Fr Langridge will take up the full-time post in September.
The Archdiocese of Southwark covers all boroughs in south London, the whole county of Kent and the Medway Unitary Authority. Editorial Comment: Page 17
June 22 2012 £1.50 (Republic of Ireland €1.80)
Congress leaves Ireland’s faithful renewed
Abbey to offer monastic gap years
Cardinal Marc Ouellet leads a Eucharistic procession at the 50th International Eucharistic Congress in Dublin, where he served as papal legate FFuullll RReeppoorrtt:: PPaaggee 66
BY ED WEST
QUARR ABBEY on the Isle of Wight is to offer “monastic internships” to four men between the ages of 18 and 25.
The Benedictine abbey is offering the unusual placements to candidates for two months, following the way of life of the monks.
They will learn about the Benedictine tradition and have the opportunity to deepen their prayer lives and reflect on the Bible, and are expected to contribute their work to the welfare of the monastery.
Fr Luke Bell said the abbey launched the programme because it had received specific requests from members of the public.
He said: “It’s like a gap year experience and laying a spiritual foundation. It’s a grounding for a life in spirituality.
“It’s very much a monastic tradition for guests to stay in a monastery but it’s normally a week or two in the spiritual programme. People are actually working in the Rule of Benedict.
“There will not be a lot of teaching, not intensive teaching at any rate, but there will be time apart and learning to be silent with God. We’ll have a programme of work and they will be expected to work four hours a day, except Sunday. There will be guidance of prayer and spiritual reading, and attendance at the liturgy.”
Fr Bell said the interns would be expected to attend most Offices, but not all.
The first intern programme will run from the start of September to the end of October, and those interested in applying are asked to email Fr Bell at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FR JEROME MURPHY-O’CONNOR
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FR JAMES MARTIN SJ THE WORLD’S FUNNIEST SAINTS
DOM LEO MAIDLOW DAVIS THE SECRET OF CATHOLIC SCHOOLS
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Archaeologists say they may have found bones of John the Baptist BY ED WEST
REMAINS found in a Bulgarian monastery by archaeologists may turn out to include the hand of St John the Baptist, a new study suggests.
The remains were discovered in an ancient reliquary in a fifth-century monastery on Sveti Ivan Island in the Black Sea two years ago.
But after the finds, which include small fragments of a skull, bones from a jaw and an arm, and a tooth, were met with scepticism Oxford University archaeologists undertook carbon-dating tests.
Last week the team announced they had provided scientific evidence to date the right-handed knuckle bone to the first century AD.
Scientists from the University of Copenhagen analysed the DNA of the bones, finding they came from one individual, probably a man, from a family in the Middle East.
The Monastery of John the Forerunner and the Baptist was once an important centre of Christianity, but its monastery and church were destroyed by Ottoman invaders in the 15th century. It is one of many sites around the world claiming to hold relics of the saint.
Professor Tom Higham, who led the study, said: “We were surprised when the radiocarbon-dating produced this very early age.
“We had suspected that the bones may have been more recent than this, perhaps from the third or fourth centuries.
The result from the metacarpal hand bone is clearly consistent with someone who lived in the early first century AD.”
He added: “Whether that person is John the Baptist is a question that we cannot yet definitely answer and probably never will.”
Bulgarian archaeologists had found a small box made of hardened volcanic ash close to the sarcophagus, with inscriptions in ancient Greek that referred to John the Baptist.
Ampleforth to sell monastic beer again BY ED WEST
MONKS at Ampleforth Abbey are to produce Britain’s first monastic beer since the Reformation.
The beer is to go on sale in July, having been circulated among testers, including staff at Ampleforth College, for the past year.
Fr Wulstan Peterburs, the abbey’s procurator, told the Guardian: “We think we’ve got the taste and texture right. The last time the order did this in a big way, in the 18th century, we were given a licence by Louis XIV to sell our beer everywhere in France.
“We’re not being that ambitious but we think we’ve got a success on our hands.”
The beer is strongly flavoured and sold in 330ml bottles because of its seven per cent strength.
The Ampleforth monks have been brewing cider for a decade and now produce 22,500 litres a year.
The monks are also involved with beekeeping and produce fudge cheesecake.
Vatican applies to take over internet domain BY CINDY WOODEN
THE VATICAN is seeking to control the new internet address extension “.catholic” and decide who is allowed to use it.
The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, a non-profit corporation that assigns internet domain names and addresses around the world, announced the Vatican’s formal application last week.
Social Communications, said that the Vatican’s application to control the top-level domain .catholic was “a recognition of how important the digital space is for the Church”.
The Vatican filed four separate applications for new domain names, seeking to control “.catholic” and its equivalent in other languages using Latin letters, as well as the equivalent of the word “Catholic” in the Cyrillic, Arabic and Chinese alphabets.
The corporation is overseeing a huge expansion in the number of internet extensions beyond the standard .com, .org., .edu and .gov.
Mgr Paul Tighe, secretary of the Pontifical Council for
The fee for each application was $185,000 (£120,000), which Mgr Tighe said was a “good investment” given the importance of the internet. Editorial Comment: Page 17
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