This was my last full day in London, and my last chance to get to some Latin Masses - or any important church connections in the area. It was also my last chance for advance bell ringing in London, although I should get some ringing in both Edinburgh and Dublin. So first I went to St. Martin in the Fields to ring. Some regular ringers were already on holiday, so we didn't ring all 12 bells. I rang some Stedman and Grandsire Triples (7 bell methods) and we had some call changes on the front 8. We rang down the middle 6 bells last, and I was on the 5th. We caught after chiming in "Queens", in perfect rhythm! This was my second visit to this tower.
Then I went to this hidden away, very historic Catholic Church just off Holborn Circus. St. Etheldreda's was the first Catholic church to be restored to Catholic status in London after the Emancipation Act in the 19th century. This was a High Mass in the new rite - OF Mass - with music by Mozart (the father) and congregational chant. It was beautiful! Only the Readings and Homily were in English. I took lots of photos since the post WWII windows are very nice with rich symbolism.
First, the basic church:
Lots of symbolism in the Sanctuary window. 9 choirs of Angels; God the Father; the Holy Spirit; Christ the King; the Blessed Virgin and St. Joseph; Sts. Etheldreda (a.k.a. Audrey) and Brigid of Kildare; and the Last Supper. (see if you can spot Judas.)
The side windows have Stations of the Cross and other biblical scenes.
I decided to havejust one more meal at The Old Swan: Sunday beef roast with all the trimmings, and of course Kopparberg Pear Cider! I have tried some other restaurants and cuisines, but a Londoner would have a favorite pub in his/her neighborhood - so this was mine. Now it was time for a short "power" nap!
I met Fr. Jeffrey Steele last summer at the Sacra Liturgia USA in New York City. Shortly thereafter he became Parish Priest at Our Lady's Church, St. John's Wood in Lisson Grove. This church was subjected to a quite recent wreckovation and had lost a lot of member. Fr. Jeff is working on the Liturgy and music first, then the building, and the congregation is already growing back. This is also a very historic church - the first new Catholic church to be built after the Emancipation Act.
As I entered, the organist was practicing, and there was a very out of tune pipe! I offered to tune it - Fr. Jeff didn't know I was a pipe organ builder (or at least a recovering pipe organ builder!) and was happy to have a little help making the organ sound better. So, I have done my first tiny bit of organ work in England!
That's pretty much it for today. I'm just waiting for my laundry to done in the dryer so I can go to bed. I need to check out by 10:00 and will hopefully be on a train for Edinburgh by 11:00, arriving there late afternoon.