St George the Martyr, Goodwood
ONE OF THE HIGHLIGHTS of the month was the visit by the Archbishop of Canterbury to Adelaide as part of the 175th anniversary of the Diocese. There was a dinner organised by the diocese and a group of us attended. The Archbishop stopped to talk with us briefly about our Cell of Our Lady of Walsingham and the importance of eucharistic devotion, and that he was also a Benedictine oblate.
One of the themes of the Archbishop has been about the Anglican Church being about unity, not unanimity. By this he means that our church is a church that does not seek to impose one view on all things. Yes, we have the deposit of faith, the Creeds, for example, that define what is Orthodox in belief, but we are also a church that is prepared to live with a variety of opinions on many matters. This does lead to conflict at times, but the discernment of faith is not one that should be defined as winners and losers, with the losers cast into perdition, but rather one that helps discern the movement of the Spirit as the Church lives in the present age. Anglicans classically define the Church as resting on three foundations: Scripture, reason and tradition. These three are used to help discern our way and give a moral compass in a world that is continually changing and bringing forth new challenges. We have no way to rule authoritatively on what is God’s will on many matters: instead we are called to discern where God is calling us, and to live with toleration until such a call is properly discerned over time. It’s messy, but that’s the way we are as a Church that has tried to encompass our Catholic heritage and also a Protestant heritage.
Blessing of Animals
October was also the feast of St Francis of Assisi, the patron saint of animals, and we had our annual blessing of animals at the 10 am mass. Two ferrets, two cats and a dog made it a lively event.
Feast Days in November
November starts with the feasts of the departed, All Saints on the 1st, but transferred to the first Sunday, then All Soul’s on the 2nd. One of the great gifts of our faith is that the dead are not reduced to silent dust, but are held in the love of God, waiting on the resurrection of all things, when all is renewed. Christianity has been very broad about what happens to the dead while we wait; some are held already in heaven as part of the purified saints, others are waiting and still perhaps are being purified in purgatory – in all we have left it deliberately vague, as how do you describe the state of those outside our present time. I have included at the end of the magazine two reflections on the dead, one by the great 17th C Puritan writer John Bunyan, and the other by a lesser-known Anglican writer of the 20th C, Elizabeth Goudge.
November is also the conclusion of the Church year. We think now of the year going from January to December, but this is just how we mark time. Once the year started in what we call March, hence why the ninth, tenth, eleventh and twelfth months are called September, October, November, and December, despite the Latin names that point to them being the seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth months. The Church year pivots around two great feasts: Christmas and Easter. We start our Church year around Christmas, and then have a period of preparation beforehand, Advent. We keep the four Sundays of Advent before Christmas as a preparation for the coming of the Christchild, where we also contemplate his coming again at the end of time, thoughts that tie in with the theme of November and the departed. It is common to reflect on the three last things, death, heaven and hell; not as fearful ends but as a realisation that this life is just part of of our eternal destiny. The first Sunday of Advent falls this year on 27 November.
A reminder that the Cell will meet next on 5 November at 9 am. Members pay a small fee every year to the UK and receive a good magazine in return.
We have accepted a quote from Pipe Organs Victoria to start the necessary repairs to our organ here. We have enough money in hand to complete stage 1, the urgent repairs, but we will need to have further finance to complete the other works, such as moving some of the pipes, changing the swell box and fixing the console.
Finally, Spring is a wonderful time in the gardens here with the roses out and so many of the beds bursting with colour. I do encourage you to wander around and enjoy the gardens, and my thanks to the gardening group on Tuesdays who make this possible.
The Way to Heaven
Then Mr. Honest called for his friends, and said unto them, I die, but shall make no will. As for my honesty, it shall go with me; let him that comes after be told of this. When the day that he was to be gone was come, he addressed himself to go over the river. Now the river at that time over-flowed its banks in some places; but Mr. Honest, in his lifetime, had spoken to one Good-conscience to meet him there, the which he also did, and lent him his hand, and so helped him over. The last words of Mr. Honest were, Grace reigns! So he left the world.
After this it was noised abroad that Mr. Valiant-for-truth was taken with a summons by the same post as the other, and had this for a token that the summons was true, “That his pitcher was broken at the fountain.” When he understood it, he called for his friends, and told them of it. Then said he, I am going to my Father’s; and though with great difficulty I have got hither, yet now I do not repent me of all the trouble I have been at to arrive where I am. My sword I give to him that shall succeed me in my pilgrimage, and my courage and skill to him that can get it. My marks and scars I carry with me, to be a witness for me that I have fought His battles who will now be my rewarder. When the day that he must go hence was come, many accompanied him to the riverside, into which as he went, he said, “Death, where is thy sting?” And as he went down deeper, he said, “Grave, where is thy victory?” So he passed over, and all the trumpets sounded for him on the other side.
John Bunyan, The Pilgrim’s Progress, 1678
The child Henrietta has been decorating the tombs of the departed in the Cathedral, and is reflecting on a crusader tomb of a rather grim knight, Sir Despard, with his dog carved under his feet. The story goes on:
Did dogs have immortal souls, she wondered? She had once asked Grandfather but he had been distressingly vague about it. They might, he thought, or they might not. If it was a nice dog one could but hope.
Henrietta was sure this one had been a nice dog. After she had kissed his nose she knelt on with her eyes shut, thinking about him and his master. She doubted if Sir Despard had gone straight up to heaven to play a harp when he died… He did not look like that… He looked like one of those who went to a place called “the realms of darkness” and had a good deal done to them before they were suitable for harp playing. One of Grandfather’s prayers for the dead went like this—”King of majesty, deliver the souls of the departed from the pit of destruction that the grave devour them not; that they go not down to the realms of darkness: but let Michael, the holy standard bearer, make speed to restore them to the brightness of glory.” It was a prayer that suited Sir Despard very well, Henrietta thought. She could see him behind her closed lids, a dead man striding down long, black corridors, with his armour clanking and his feet kicking up a lot of dust, down and down into deepening darkness, with his dog at his heels… The dog was frightened by the dark and the dust and the silence of death and had his tail tucked in and his ears back, but he did not dream of leaving his master…. And they tramped for hundreds of years until they came out into a great vaulted place like the crypt of the Cathedral and there Michael was waiting for them, with a sword in hand and looking very grim, and he had a great deal to say to Sir Despard about his behaviour to the wives, or Saracens, before he could make him sorry for it, and good deal to do to him before he could make him fit for heavenly society… And the poor dog had to sit in the corner and watch, trembling all over and whining but not dreaming of running away… And then at last they went on again, Michael leading and Sir Despard following, feeling properly ashamed of himself, but this time they went up and up into deepening light, on and on for hundreds of years, so that the poor dog got terribly exhausted and his tongue hung out and his legs dragged. And so they came to the door of Paradise and Michael knocked on it with his sword and cried out, “Open! Bring the prisoner out of his prison house and he that sitteth in darkness out of the shadow of death!” And Saint Peter opened the door and Michael and Sir Despard went in… But the little dog, because he had no soul, was left crying outside and scratching at the door … Perhaps he was still there at this moment, after all these centuries, still trying to get in… Desperately Henrietta began to pray for him. “Give rest, O Christ, to Thy servant with Thy saints, where sorrow and pain are no more; neither sighing, but life everlasting.” And behind her closed eyelids she saw the door open a crack and heard Saint Peter say, ” Come along in and don’t make that noise,” and the little dog ran in, his tail wagging, and disappeared in a blaze of light. Henrietta opened her eyes and discovered that tears were running out of the far corners of them and making stiff wet tracks down her face in front of her ears. She wiped them away with the backs of her hands and giggled at herself, for during the last five minutes she had been living with that dog as intensely as it is possible to live…. She had thought it was all real … It was odd, she thought, how that faculty that Grandfather said was called imagination could make one actually see and hear what was not really happening at all. Yet surely that story she had imagined was a real thing? If you created a story with your mind surely it was just as much there as a piece of needlework that you created with your fingers? You could not see it with your bodily eyes, that was all. As she got up and dusted her knees Henrietta realized how the invisible world must be saturated with the stories that men tell both in their minds and by their lives. They must be everywhere, these stories, twisting together, penetrating existence like air breathed into the lungs, and how terrible, how awful, thought Henrietta, if the air breathed should be foul. How dare men live, how dare they think or imagine, when every action and every thought is a tiny thread that man weaves on the loom that God has set up. A loom that stretches from heaven above to hell below and from side to side of the universe … It was all rather terrifying, and Henrietta was glad to hurry home for lunch.
Elizabeth Goudge, The City of Bells, 1936.
8.00 am Mass
10.00 am Solemn Sung Mass
Monday Fr Scott’s Day Off
Tuesday 10.00 am Mass,
followed by gardening
Wednesday 8.00 am Mass
Thursday 12 noon Mass
Friday 8.00 am Mass
Saturday 8.00 am Mass
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BSB 105033 account 151992640
Please put “offering” in the description if that is the purpose.
2 ALL SOULS
3 Richard Hooker, Priest, Anglican Apologist, Teacher of the Faith, 1600
4 Charles Borromeo, Archbishop of Milan, Reformer, 1584
5 Laying of Foundation Stone of 1st Church 1882?
6 ALL SAINTS (from 1)
7 Willibrord of York, Bishop, Apostle of Frisia, 739
8 Saints, Martyrs, Missionaries and Teachers of the Anglican Communion
9 Margery Kempe, Mystic, c1440
10 Leo the Great, Bishop of Rome, Teacher of the Faith, 461
11 Martin, Bishop of Tours, c397
11 Armistice Day
13 PENTECOST 23
13 Benedictine Saints
14 Benedictine Souls
16 Margaret, Queen of Scotland, Philanthropist, Reformer of the Church, 1093
16 Edmund Rich of Abingdon, Archbishop of Canterbury, 1240
17 Hugh, Bishop of Lincoln, 1200
18 Elizabeth of Hungary, Princess of Thuringia, Philanthropist, 1231
19 Hilda, Abbess of Whitby, 680
19 Mechtild, Béguine of Magdeburg, Mystic, 1280
20 CHRIST THE KING
21 The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary
22 Cecilia, Martyr at Rome, c230
23 Clement, Bishop of Rome, c100
24 Andrew Dung-Lac, 1839 and the martyrs of Vietnam
25 Catherine of Alexandria, Martyr, 4th Cent.
25 James Noble, first indigenous Australian ordained, 1941
25 Isaac Watts, Hymn Writer, 1748
27 ADVENT 1
29 Day of Intercession and Thanksgiving for the Missionary Work of the Church
30 ANDREW, APOSTLE AND MARTYR
1 Charles de Foucauld, Hermit, Servant of the Poor, 1916
2 Frances Perry, Founder of Royal Women’s Hospital, Melbourne, 1892
2 Channing Moore Williams, Anglican Missionary Bishop to China and Japan, 1910
3 Francis Xavier, Apostle of the Indies, missionary, 1552
4 ADVENT 2
6 Nicholas, Bishop of Myra, c326
7 Ambrose, Bishop of Milan, Teacher of the Faith, 397
8 The Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary
8 Richard Baxter, Pastor and Spiritual Writer, 1691
11 ADVENT 3
13 LUCY, MARTYR AT SYRACUSE, 304
13 Samuel Johnson, Moralist, 1784
14 Ember Wednesday
14 John of the Cross, Poet, Teacher of the Faith, 1591
16 Ember Friday
17 Ember Saturday
17 O Sapientia
17 Eglantine Jebb, Social Reformer, Founder of “Save the Children”, 1928
18 ADVENT 4
21 THOMAS, APOSTLE AND MARTYR
25 THE BIRTH OF OUR LORD; CHRISTMAS DAY
26 STEPHEN, DEACON AND FIRST MARTYR
27 JOHN, APOSTLE AND EVANGELIST
28 HOLY INNOCENTS
29 THOMAS BECKET, ARCHBISHOP OF CANTERBURY, MARTYR, 1170
30 Josephine Butler, Social Reformer, 1905
31 John Wyclif, Reformer, 1384
Address for correspondence
The Parish of St George the Martyr,
34 Angus Street
Goodwood, SA, 5034