Thursday, August 31, 2017

Tuesday, 13 June 2017: St. Anselm's Church, Pembury

Some time ago, Fr. Ed Tomlinson published an ad on the Sacred Music Forum looking for a part-time organist.  I immediately replied that I would be very interested - at some point in the future, like f - 5 years from now, when I turn 70.  He understood, and invited me to visit the next time I came to the UK.  So I did, and played the organ for the Noon Mass - my first Mass to play for in England!

Fr. Ed met my train from London at the Tunbridge Wells station.  On the way to St. Anselm's, he showed me some of the countryside, including a historic St. Peter's Old Church.

When the Archdiocese of Southwark decided to combine the newly formed community in Pembury with the larger parish in the next town, they gave it to the Anglican Ordinariate community comprised of two former C of E priests with about 70 parishioners.  Only a hall with offices and a kitchen were originally built, and then a small chapel was added.  The building has been turned into a really nice church, with many artifacts acquired from redundant churches.

And the interior has been fixed up quite nicely:

The main Altar
The side Altar
The Chapel to Our Lady of Walsingham
from the organ console
The pulpit
The sedilia

The choir, Baptistry, organ, and OLW Chapel
The electronic organ by Viscount
It was just a Low Mass.  I played some prelude music before Mass, sang a hymn at Communion, and accompanied everyone in the Salve Regina after Mass.  Joanna Bogle and some of the Ladies Ordinariate Group from London were there visiting also.  Fr. Ed gave a talk on the history of the parish, and then we all had lunch at the pub across the commons from the church.  The ladies and I were on the same train back to London.

Friday, 9 June 2017: Duomo di Milano

[My trip in June was so packed with things to do that I did not get to blog regularly. Since returning to Charleston, it has been also a very busy summer. I will endeavor to complete my blogging on my trip.]

Friday was the last day of Sacra Liturgia Milano. We began with just a couple of presentations and a closing address by His Excellency Dominique Rey, Bishop of Frejus-Toulon in France. We then had some free time for lunch and walking to the Duomo again for the final Liturgy, Vespers in the Modern Ambrosian Rite.

The High Altar from about midway in the nave.

Looking across the Altar from the north transept to the south.

The Altar, Pulpits, and Organs.

One of the side aisles.

At the end of Vespers, we processed to the altar of Bl. Ildefonso Schuster where we chanted the Te Deum.

Now the 2017 Sacra Liturgia Conference was officially over.  You can see photos and videos taken during the conference at Photographs from Sacra Liturgia Milan.

Our conference members had received a free tour of the interior of the Duomo on Thursday afternoon, but some of us (OK, mainly me!) wanted to take the extended tour - up to the rooftop of the Duomo, also known as "the terraces".

At this first level, above the south transept, 
there are wire screens.

You can look upwards the store tracery
and the flying buttresses.

You can even get between the column continuing upward from 
its interior column and a balcony-type railing.

From nearer the west front of the Duomo looking back
through a number of flying buttresses. 

 There are 52 columns inside the Duomo,
and they each extend to the sky above the terraces.
Each one has a finial with a statue,
as well as other statues (behind bars) below.

 There are statues literally everywhere!

More flying buttresses with the scaffolding around the
central tower where restoration is taking place.

Such incredible detail so high above the Piazza!

This is as high as tourists can get - the center of the roof above the nave.

Notice the tracery following the spiral staircase
up each corner of the central tower.
Looking towards the west front.

 Me chatting with Fr. Alionidas Budrius from Lithuania.
His assistant took this photo.

Fr. Budrius and me with the central tower in the background.

Fr. Budrius, Dr. Mahrt, and me near the edge of the roof.
You can see the new and old stonework.

Looking down on the north side of the nave.
Various pieces of stonework waiting to be laid in place.

Part of the US contingent attending Sacra Liturgia Milano:
Matt Mueller, Jon Laird, Dr. William Mahrt, me, and Jenny Donelson.

Another photo taken at the lower terrace.

I'm not sure if the Duomo terraces were on all our bucket lists or not, but we all certainly enjoyed the hour or so we spent up there. We then went across the Piazza to the Galleria Restaurant for dinner afterwards. A bunch of Catholics, in Italy, on a Friday: the seafood dinner was fabulous. We all highly recommend the Ristorante Galleria.

So, for me, bookend bucket-list items in Milano:  opera at La Scala on the first night and the Duomo rooftop on the last day.  Saturday morning is my flight from the smaller airport in Milan to the London City Airport right in London.