Godspeed John and June!

On Sunday 19 February, over coffee and delicious cakes, we said goodbye to John and June Wood, who have been part of our congregation ever since the Latin Mass first came to Bedford 18 months ago. They are moving down to Wales to be nearer one of their daughters, but assured us that they will be visiting the other two daughters in Bedfordshire from time to time and will hope to pop in.
Fr Patrick Hutton said what a pleasure it had been to have them with us and we all signed a card of best wishes. June said that Christ the King, Bedford was the friendliest parish she had been in, and they were really going to miss us. We will miss them too and hope that they will find a Latin Mass not too far from their new home.



Fr. Horgan blesses throats

The Sunday morning Mass at Bedford on 5 February saw an unusual ceremony taking place.  As it had been the feast of St Blaise only two days earlier, Fr Horgan, our visiting celebrant, invited the congregation to come forward after Mass for a blessing of their throats.  Many of them did so.

We knelt and the blessing was given with a pair of crossed candles which had been lit and extinguished a few moments before, with the candles either side of the throat and the words:  ”By the intercession of St Blaise, bishop and martyr, may God deliver you from every malady of the throat, and from every possible mishap; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit”.

Not much is known about St Blaise, but in 316 he is said to have saved the life of a boy who was choking after swallowing a fish bone, hence his patronage of illnesses of the throat.





No Mass yesterday (next year, Godwilling!) but this sermon is beautiful:


“LORD, now lettest Thou Thy servant depart in peace; according to Thy word: for mine eyes have seen Thy salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all people: to be a light to lighten the gentiles and to be the glory of Thy people Israel”


Father Patrick gets a biretta!

Father Patrick gets a biretta
It all started over coffee in the hall after the Latin Mass a few months ago. Fr Patrick Hutton, the Parish Priest at Christ the King, admitted to losing his biretta at the cemetery a while back and regretting its loss.
We were aware that Fr Patrick had a big birthday coming up on 8 December, and so I suggested we replaced his biretta as a gift from the Latin Mass congregation. As this was intended to be a surprise, we had to take a guess at the size and duly placed the order with Luzar Vestments on line. The biretta arrived, was wrapped and accompanied by a card of good wishes; Fr Patrick is a true supporter of the Latin Mass and we are very grateful to him for his interest.
Sunday 11 December was the chosen day both for our presentation and another one later in the day from the main congregation at Christ the King. Therefore over coffee in the hall, I duly presented Fr Patrick with his gift. He was clearly delighted, put it on straightaway and assured us it was a good fit. We had pre-arranged a photographer and the results are below.

Happy 75th Birthday Fr Patrick and God bless you.



All Saints and All Souls – a unique double

For the first time in nearly half a century, a unique double took place at Christ the King, Bedford, on 1 and 2 November.
We were delighted to welcome Fr Matthew Goddard of the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter to celebrate an evening Missa Cantata for All Saints Day. For the first time, we had enlisted the services of Bedford Choral Society, who sang a setting by Adolfo Kaim, a 19th century German composer. The music was beautiful, Fr Goddard looked splendid in his many-coloured chasuble and the team of four servers carried out their duties with dignity and efficiency. The Mass was attended by a congregation of some 70 people, the highest number we have in the 15 months since the Latin Mass started at Bedford.
Fr Goddard, who had travelled from Reading, stayed overnight in the area and was back in church at 10 am the following morning to celebrate a Low Mass for All Souls Day. The black vestments and a catafalque lent the appropriate solemnity to the occasion. The congregation was about 40 this time, not as large as the evening before, but still very respectable for a weekday morning.
We are very grateful both to Fr Goddard and the Bedford Choral Society and look forward to more Masses with both of them in the future.