Taken from The Tablet Archives
22nd June 1968


BLACK AND WHITE PREACHING took place in Westminster Cathedral last Sunday for the White Fathers' centenary. Cardinal Heenan stressed how impressed he was that the concelebrated High Mass at which he was pontificating was to be the only centenary celebration. In all his years, he said, he had never known any institute, religious, secular or civic, which had not put on celebrations for their centenary.

The White Fathers and White Sisters, he went on, were determined not to spend one penny that belonged to Africa. They would not squander even the fare to bring distinguished Africans over to take part in this thanksgiving Mass. This, the cardinal said, would encourage "those of us who support the White Fathers and White Sisters, because we know that the funds are put to good use ".

A striking feature of the Mass was the presence of ten African priests concelebrating with the cardinal. This was done in keeping with the express wish of the White Fathers, who wanted the Africans to have the first places in the ceremony. It was symbolic of the outlook and the achievement of this missionary order, which was founded in Africa itself and has concentrated on the African field.

As the cardinal put it, " they have not gone to bring a Church to Africa but to build an African Church—a very different thing indeed ". That is why they have spared no pains from the start to train African boys and young men for the priesthood.

All the African priests in the sanctuary on Sunday, like the African sisters in the nave of the cathedral, are in London and Oxford for further studies. The choir and the servers, sixty strong, wearing their distinctive habit, were students from St. Edward's College, Totteridge, and Broome Hall, Dorking—the scholasticate and novitiate respectively of the White Fathers.

Present in the congregation were the High Commissioners for Zambia and Malawi and representatives of the Governments of the Congo, Uganda, Ghana and Tanzania, as well as representatives of the Church Missionary , Society, the Baptist Missionary Society, and the Methodist Missionary Society.

(source: Maurice Billingsley)

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Taken from The Tablet Archives
24th July 1886

The Cardinal Archbishop Manning of Westminster, as we briefly recorded last week, visited Totteridge, his native place, on his seventy-eighth birthday, Thursday, July 15th, and laid the memorial stone of an orphanage which will be taken charge of by the Daughters of the Cross.

His Eminence was attended by the Very Rev. Father Kirk, 0.S.C., and the Revv. C. A. Cox Dr. Sullivan, E. Nolan, J. Rettori, A. Gossens, and Fathers Bowden and Antrobus of the Oratory.

The new building, which is from the designs of Mr. J. S. Hall, is to supply the place of the orphanage at West Kensington which will have to be given up very soon owing to the expiration of the lease. It is prettily situated, and will accommodate 200 children.

Before laying the stone, the Cardinal Archbishop delivered a brief address : His Eminence said that they had come there that day for a joyous work : and it gave joy to those good Sisters who had so long been labouring and toiling in London in the instruction and salvation of little children. He rejoiced with them that they had now so beautiful a home in the country—a home to which their Sisters, worn and overworked as he knew they often were, would be able to come, and spend a while among those green fields and in that pleasant air.

They had met to take part in a work than which he knew of none more essential or more dear to the heart of our Divine Saviour. Our Lord loved little children, and His love was an example to us of the love we ought to bear to little children. He loved them because He had made them to His own image and likeness because they were fresh from the waters of baptism ; because as yet they had not spotted their white robe with any mortal sin; because as yet they had done nothing to forfeit their right to the kingdom of heaven.

There were none more helpless than little children, and there were none in greater danger. Sometimes these poor little ones had no home, no father or mother, none to love them, none to care for them. Some had homes, but of what kind were they ? Homes at times where there was continual conflict between father and mother, and where the children learned only what was bad. How would little children grow up in such homes as those without losing their baptismal innocence ? He blessedGod that in these long years by the help of good Sisters such as the Daughters of the Cross and the Sisters of Charity, thousands of these little ones had been watched over, cared for, and sheltered, and when they went out into the world to fight the battle of life they were strengthened with the knowledge of God and of His Blessed Mother.

That work was a blessed and holy work, a work on which he believed the Holy Spirit of God would come down in all His benedictions. He prayed that the blessing of God might come down, not upon that house only, but upon the neighbourhood. He believed that there were there kind and generous hearts, and that when they saw this work they would be drawn to it.

Might the blessing of God rest upon those whose hearts were united with this work and with the hearts of these good Sisters After the ceremony his Eminence was presented with an address on behalf of the orphans at West Ken sington, a number of whom were present,

(source: Maurice Billingsley)

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Taken from The Tablet Archives
6th December 1913

The Bishop of Portsmouth visited Bishop's Waltham for the solemn opening and blessing of the new Apostolic School, erected by the White Fathers at the Priory.

His lordship, accompanied by several clergy from the surrounding districts, was met at the station by the Father Superior (Rev. P. Travers), and the rector of the district (Rev. T. G. Hickey, D.D., of Eastleigh), and at the gate of the Priory received a rousing reception from the Staff and pupils.

In the afternoon, his lordship, assisted by the Revv. Fathers King and O'Leary, as deacon and subdeacon, with the Rev. Father Kline (Southsea), as master of ceremonies, together with a large gathering of clergy (secular and regular), solemnly blessed the new building, which comprises spacious school-rooms, refectory, dormitories, kitchen, scullery, bath-rooms, lavatories, &c. The structure has been erected from the plans of Mr. Sanders (architect), the work, being executed by Mr. Draper (Fareham).

The Rev. Dr. Hickey, at the close of the ceremony, expressed his appreciation at the large concourse of Catholics and non-Catholics present. Previously he had periodically gathered his little flock of some 27 souls in an upper room at the public inn of the village for Mass, &c. They were grateful to Mrs. Robson (a non-Catholic), the previous owner of the property, for her repeated acts of kindness to the Community. The very name of the house (" The Priory ") and the ruins of the Old Abbey close by, testified to the ancient Catholicity of Bishop's Waltham. The ceremony to-day would help to revivify the ancient Faith in the famous old Catholic historical centre of Bishop's Waltham. The visitors were afterwards entertained to tea at the Monastery.

(source: Maurice Billingsley)

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