“The only worthwhile striving is after the highest ideals: If you aim for an easy target, your standard will inevitably decline, and no progress is ever made, except through real effort and real suffering.” - Servant of God Fra' Andrew Bertie                                                                                                                                                 "Work as if everything depends on you, pray as if everything depends on God" - Saint Ignatius of Loyola



A truly glorious day would be a fitting description of the Dorchester Day of Recollection yesterday. Nearly two dozen members of the Order, including several coming for the first time, Companions and friends came together in the delightful setting of Saint Birinus, under tentative sunshine, for the Patronal Feast of the Grand Priory, Blessed Adrian Fortescue. 

During the Mass two members of the Grand Priory renewed their Simple Vows for the second time, Fratres Paul Caffrey and John Eidinow. The vows were received by Fra' Duncan Gallie, Chancellor, on behalf of the Grand Prior, who is in Moscow with the His Most Eminent Highness the Grand Master at the opening of the Russian exhibition to celebrate the 900th Anniversary of the Papal Bull. (See the previous post about the icon of Our Lady of Philermo.) 

As on previous such happy occasions, we were the guests of our extremely generous host, Father John Osman, Chaplain to the Irish Association, and it was a great joy to welcome among our fellow guests five members of the Irish Association, present to support their brother Fra’ Paul.
The roof of the parish church of St Birinus
The Mass, and Benediction in the afternoon, were ably served by two faithful young Companions. The celebrant was the Chaplain of the Grand Priory, Monsignor Antony Conlon, who also gave the two Conferences upon the Homily of Cardinal Pole for the re-erection of the Grand Priory of England of the Order in 1557, given to the Tudor nobles and the burghers and merchants of London at the ceremony at Whitehall Palace, in the presence of Queen Mary, following Mass at Westminster Abbey.

The texts of the conferences are available as a PDF download by clicking HERE.

Blessed Adrian Fortescue, pray for the Order in England.
The 14th C Jesse window in the mediaeval Abbey