Items that may have been
added since your last visit
(starting January 2017)



Nov. 28th. 2017

Recently Pat McHale visited College St. Felix in Kerlois and sent us some photos by way of Robbie Dempsey.  These photos can now be seen at the bottom of page 157 in the Gallery on the web site.  Thank you Pat!


Nov. 8th 2017

We have received another update from Fr. David Cullen W.F. by way of Robbie Dempsey.  This update can be seen in the 'APPEALS' section of the web site.


Oct 26th 2017

Although, as yet, we have seen no Obituary for Fr. John Lynch M.Afr. who passed away in Florida last month, The Petit Echo has published a brief 'Life-line' for Fr. John which we have reproduced in Obituaries section of the web site. _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Sept 27th 2017

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Fr. John Lynch M.Afr following an accident in Florida, USA. ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

August 16th 2017

Maurice Billingsley has sent us a link to an interview with the newly consecrated Bishop John MacWilliam of Laghouat in Algeria:


Ian Scott has written with a proposal for a get-together next summer in the St. Boswell's area.  His message can be seen in the reunions section of the web site. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

August 3rd 2017

Frs Richard Calcutt & Chris Wallbank have published a very informative obituary of Fr. Richard 'Dick' Kinlen in the 'Petit Echo'.  They along with the delegate provincial of the UK (Fr. Terry Madden M.Afr) have given us permission to reproduce the article and it can now be found in our obituaries section.  Thank you all.


July 19th 2017

Following the enquiry from Chris Cooper regarding Fr. Dave Cullen's appeal, we have added Fr. Cullen's mailing address to his contact information in the Appeals section for those who may wish to send contributions directly to him.


July 10th 2017

We have received some more photos from Pete Wells.  These can now be seen in Gallery 423


July 5th 2017

We have heard from Pete Wells, at St. Columba's at the time of the fire and subsequently at Danby Hall.  He has sent us some photos which can now be seen in Gallery 423.  Thank you Pete.


June 21st 2017

Gerard Lenaghan recently revisited Abbotsford (Walter Scott's home) in the Tweed Valley and has sent us a very detailed report and the memories of St. Columba's it conjured up.
This report can be found in the  Reminiscences section on the web site. Thank you, Gerry.


June 15th 2017

We have received a new message from Fr. Dave Cullen M.Afr. in Zambia.  This message can be found in the Appeals section of the web site.

Pat McHale has sent us a link to the obituary of Andy Cunningham, the creator of  Bodger & Badger, a contemporary of some WF students at St. John's College in Southsea in the late 60s.  https://tinyurl.com/y74uw5nq


June 7th 2017

Over the weekend of June 3rd/4th Chris Cooper, Michael Byrne, Maurice Billingsley and Tony Smyth descended on Bishop's Waltham.  A brief report of this gathering along with photos can be found in the Reunions section.

While in Bishop's Waltham I met several of the parishioners and discovered that even after all these years there remains a strong connection between the parish and the White Fathers.  In fact, the following appeared in the current edition of the parish news letter:  :  and a parishioner, Terry Butler, wrote us to say: "So much history for us with the White Fathers & I have worked constantly to keep our connection alive.We currently support a White Father in Central Province, Zambia and we have so built 3 schools there one of which is rated the best school in the province." Canon Alan Griffiths, the current priest in charge at Our Lady Queen of the Apostles in Bishops Waltham, said a special prayer for the White Fathers and all their work during the Sunday morning mass; having learnt just before mass of the 50 years since the closing of the Priory.


June 6th 2017

We have received some photos of the ordination of Bishop John MacWilliam M.Afr. from Howard Griggs and the Monastic Community of Worth School. These photos are now available in the report of Bishop MacWilliam's ordination in the Observations section.  We would like to thank all those involved in allowing us to reproduce these photos and Pat McHale for originally drawing our attention to them.


May 25th 2017

Maurice Billingsley attended the Episcopal ordination of Fr. John MacWilliam M.Afr. and has sent us a report which can be found in the Observations section.

Maurice also indicated he would be joining the group in Bishop's Waltham on the weekend of June 3rd/4th., a group which is slowly growing and now, it appears, includes Chris Cooper and John Joyce.


May 18th 2017

Again, Pat McHale has come up with new material for us.  A photo of the Priory Prefects of school year 1963/64.  This photo can now be viewed at the bottom of  Gallery 5.  Thank you, again, Pat.

If you have looked at the message-board recently you will see that Mike Byrne is making his way down to Bishop's Waltham on the weekend of June 3rd-4th to 'celebrate' the 50th anniversary of the closing of The Priory.  I will be joining him and we hope to see other Pelicans that weekend.


May 15th 2017

Pat McHale shared this link on the Abbeys of the Scottish borders:  https://www.facebook.com/groups/ScottishAbbeys/permalink/1696739817006869/ which he though may be of interest to some Pelicans.  Especially, perhaps, those who attended St. Columba's.  Thank you, Pat.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________May 6th. 2017

Maurice Billingsley has kindly pointed us to http://www.thewhitefathers.org.uk/gallery/ for photos of the late Fr. Pat Shanahan's funeral.  Thank you Maurice.


April 21st 2017

Maurice Billingsley writes to inform us of the Episcopal consecration of Father John G. MacWilliam, M.Afr.  (http://www.mafrwestafrica.net/actualites/1427-nouvel-eveque-de-laghouat-ghardaiaThis will take place at Worth Abbey, near Gatwick on May 20th.

Mike O'Callaghan posted on Facebook a congratulatory note to Fr. Walter Vogels M. Afr on his 60th anniversary of ordination to the priesthood. Although Fr. Vogels is a Belgian Missionary of Africa he will remembered fondly by all those British students, like myself, who attended the scholasticate in Vanier, Ottawa, Canada in the 60s and beyond, where he became professor emeritus of Saint Paul University..


April 16th 2017

Wishing all Pelicans a very happy and Blessed Easter.  "May the Lord be 'raised!"

Olivia O'Dolan is asking if anyone knows the whereabouts of Fr. Ciaran McGuiness, if any Pelican can help, please, reply to Olivia on the message board or email us here at webteam@thepelicans.org.uk.  Thank you.

Just a reminder that some of us are planning a little get-together in Bishops Waltham on the weekend of June 3rd & 4th, anyone interested in joining us, please, let us know at the email address above or in the 'Reunions' section of the message board.


March 23rd 2017

We have the third and final part of Pat MacDermott's observations on Jerusalem and St. Anne's church therein, thanks to Robbie Dempsey. This can be found in the observations section of the web site.

Mike Byrne has suggested that the forums or this update section may not be the best place to talk about a possible gathering in Bishop's Waltham in June so we have added a brief note in the appropriate area Reunions. :-)


March 18th 2017

Pat McHale has brought to our attention that "Father John G. MacWilliam, M.Afr. , Provincial "White Father" of Maghreb, was officially appointed bishop of the diocese of Laghouat (Algeria), the "diocese of the Sahara" on 16 March '17.  He succeeded Bishop Claude Rault, who, having reached the age limit, presented his resignation."  Fr. MacWilliam is originally from the London area.


March 11th 2017

We have a new message from Fr. Dave Cullen.  This can be found in the Appeals section.


March 8th 2017

Peter Finn has kindly sent us a cutting regarding the passing of former Priorian Arthur McBryan in 1982.  This obituary from the 'Bury Times' can be seen in the Obituaries section.

Over the past weekend Pat McHale was researching something online and came across an address by the late Abbot Cuthbert (Peter)Johnston given on the occasion of the White Fathers centenary celebrations at Park Place in 2012. This address is very much Peter 's reminiscences of his time as a White Fathers student.  So with the kind permission of the webmaster at www.africamission-mafr.org we have reproduced this address in our Reminiscences section.

The Pelicans now have a Facebook group (The Pelicans) at https://www.facebook.com/groups/thepelicans1/


March 1st 2017

Today The Society of Missionaries of Africa (White Fathers) have opened a new international website.  The url is http://mafrome.org


February 24th 2017

Paul has pointed out that he was led to the Steam & Traction page by Olivia O'Dolan, long time Belcoo resident and friend of the Pelicans.  Thank you both.

This June sees the 50th anniversary of the closing of The Priory.  If anyone would like to get together to commemorate this event, please, let us know at webteam@thepelicans.org.uk. Pentecost weekend (June 3rd & 4th) which happens to include the feast of the Martyrs of Uganda (3rd) is a traditional weekend for Bishops Waltham Pelicans gatherings.

For those who haven't seen it, Mike Mearns has posted a 'farewell' to Charlie Bingham on the message board.  Thank you Mike.


February 19th 2017

Our Webmaster Emeritus, Paul West, has sent us some pictures of the old Steam & Traction service in Belcoo.  These can be found in the Blacklion section under Other photos and background information


February 12th 2017

For those who haven't checked into the message board recently, Eric Creaney has written to advise us of the passing of Charlie Bingham who was a student with the White Fathers from 1953 to 1963.  Charlie passed away on Feb. 9th. 2017.

We will be away for a few days from this afternoon so we would like to take this opportunity to wish our Webmaster Emeritus, Paul West, a very happy birthday tomorrow (Feb 13th).  We hope you have a wonderful day, Paul, and many more to come.


January 27th. 2017

We have added a brief report on the funeral of Abbot Cuthbert (Peter) Johnson to the end of his obituary in the obituaries section.


January 23rd 2016

The Reverend Dr. Anthony Ward SM is a member of the council of  The Henry Bradshaw Society, of which  the late Abbot Cuthbert was president.  He has kindly allows us to reproduce the words he wrote for that society on Abbot Cuthbert's passing. This is appended to the previous obituary notice provided by Mike Ellis in Obituaries.  In addition we have transcribed the homily Abbot Cuthbert (Peter) gave at the White Fathers' UK centenary celebrations in Galashields in 2012. This can be found in the  Observations section.


January 21st 2017

Pat McHale has kindly shared with us the funeral arrangements for Dom. Cuthbert (Peter) Johnson as published by the Diocese of Hexham & Newcastle, Peter's home diocese and where he last served.

                         Dom Cuthbert (Peter) Johnson, O.S.B. RIP

Dom Cuthbert Johnson, O.S.B., died on Monday 16 January 2017 in Holy Cross Home, Sunderland. He was 70 years of age.

Abbot Cuthbert joined the Benedictine order and entered Quarr Abbey on the Isle of Wight. After Abbot Cuthbert left the Abbey he came to our Diocese and was Priest at St. Oswald’s in Bellingham, Northumberland.

Funeral Arrangements:

Abbot Cuthbert’s body will be received in St. Aloysius Church, Hebburn at 4.00pm on Wednesday 25 January 2017 and his Requiem Mass will be at 9.30am on Thursday 26 January 2017 also at St. Aloysius. Abbot Cuthbert will then be buried at Hebburn Cemetery. There will be a reception in St. Aloysius Church Hall following the Mass.


If any priest would like to concelebrate at the Mass, either from within the Diocese or further afield, can you please inform Paula Henley, at Bishop’s House, in order to ensure we have adequate seating for clergy either by email: paula.henley@rcdhn.org.uk or tel: 0191 228 0003.

Please remember Dom Cuthbert and his family in your prayers.

May he rest in peace.


January 19th 2017

It is with great sadness that we report the passing of Abbot Cuthbert Johnson, known to so many Pelicans as simply Peter JohnsonMike Ellis has kindly supplied us with a brief history of Peter's life which can be found in the Obituaries section.


January 12th 2017

We have received an updated AMAP report from Mike Ellis.  This report along with Mike's email can be found in the APPEALS section.


January 7th 2017

Robbie Dempsey has kindly supplied us with part 2  of Pat MacDermott's observations on Jerusalem and St. Anne's church located in that city. Parts 1 & 2 are now available in the Observations section.


January 2nd 2017

Wishing all Pelicans a very happy New Year and every happiness for 2017.