Thursday, 10 September 2009

The Year of Priests

Just back from Ascot Priory where the incumbents who hold livings under the patronage of the Guild of All Souls were invited for a 24 hour conference.
It is really splendid that the Guild takes the trouble to bring together all the incumbents of its living once a year for this conference. The fellowship is great and the way we are looked after second to none.
The guest speaker was Fr Jonathan Baker SSC, principal of Pusey House. Fr Baker spoke to us about Priesthood basing his thoughts on the Vatican II decree Presbyterorum Ordinis, the letter to priests issued by the Holy Father last June and other documents of the Church of England. Fr Baker explored the nature and character of the priest as the balance between union with Christ and apostolic work. It was indeed refreshing and formative, but we could never expect less from Fr Baker.
Bishop Keith Newton, President of the Guild, celebrated Mass for us at the Lady chapel. After lunch another meeting about news from our parishes and all was concluded by receiving the bishop's blessing. It was a joy to hear about parishes up and down the country that are flourishing, good news all round and great to be with fellow priests who together pray and ponder about their priesthood.

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