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Saturday, May 14, 2016

A Beautiful Tribute

A beautiful video has been posted on the Facebook page of Our Lady of Christchurch concerning the Maryfest procession which is annually organised by our community in Christchurch, New Zealand.  As you know, our Congregation runs the Latin Mass Chaplaincy for the diocese of Christchurch.  The post below this one has a selection of photos of the occasion and this video really makes it come alive

From the Our Lady of Christchurch Facebook post:

Young Christchurch cinematographer Emma Murphy has produced this beautiful piece of art in the form of filmed record of the 2016 Maryfest. Emma has spent hours and hours editing, arranging and compiling the footage she took during the procession, itself a grueling task to be one person at every camera angle.
May Our Heavenly Queen, who turned her eyes of mercy towards us, use the artistry of Emma's eyes and fingers and give her an abundance to the blossoming of her young talent. A child of Mary is never lost!

A big thank you to Emma for doing such a wonderful job!

Monday, May 09, 2016

Written in Her Heart

On Sunday, 8 May, 2016, 
the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer in Christchurch,
 New Zealand, had the joy of once more 
organising what would become the 
fifth annual Maryfest and Grand Procession
 in honour of Our Lady of Christchurch. 
The first procession took place in 2011,
after the terrible earthquake of 22 February that year, 
when the image of Our Lady
 which was standing in the (since collapsed) Cathedral tower
 was seen to have turned to face out towards the torn city;
reminiscent of the Salve Regina:
"Turn then, Most Gracious Advocate, 
thine eyes of mercy towards us."
Much work of preparation bears fruit 
in the rapid assembly of everything required 
in the church hall of the 
Christchurch parish of Our Lady of Victories.
Our Lady's bellringers await the moment 
when they will ring the glory or their Heavenly Queen.
This year a very beautiful crown was 
made painstakingly by the hand 
of a hidden servant of Our Lady 
and offered to her by 
the little cortege of the 
Crown Bearer, May Queen and Train Bearer.

The bier leaves the church borne by the sedarii
assisted by the ribboniers and flanked by the torch bearers.
Our Lady's flower girls and bell ringers go ahead 
strewing the ground with petals
 and ringing little bells.
The Mother of God represented as 
Our Lady of Christchurch is borne aloft 
through the streets 
wearing her silver tiara in preparation for the coronation.
As we process along Main South Road 
the Holy Rosary is played,
the band taking up the Gloria 
and interspersing the decades with 
a verse of the Fatima Ave.
A dozen garlanded banners add to the spleadour of the occasion.

The return to the Church of Our Lady of Victories.
This year for the first time, 
His Lordship Bishop Barry Jones
 was sadly absent, having passed away 
on 13 February this year.
In his stead
Very Rev. Fr Rick Loughnan, 
our Diocesan Administrator, 
consecrated the city and diocese once again to 
the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary 
and gave the Solemn Benediction
of the Most Blessed Sacrament.
As the fanfare resounded through the church...
....our May Queen crowns the image of the Queen of the May.
A miniature orchestra accompanies the congregation 
during the exposition of 
the Blessed Sacrament, 
playing "Jesus my Lord, my God, my All
and the "Tantum Ergo".
Unfortunately pictures cannot sufficiently capture the 
 moving witness of hundreds of souls from the Diocese 
kneeling, singing sweetly to this accompaniment 
in adoration of Our Eucharist Lord.
For the first time Our Blessed Lady 
was, this year, offered an antique votive heart
 enclosing the names of more than 1500 souls
 who had been enrolled
 from all around the diocese.
The very large number of sheets of names 
were gathered, printed in miniature 
and enclosed in the receptacle in the back of the heart
... literally "written in Our Lady's heart"... 
This was formally offered to Our Blessed Mother 
by our Very Rev. Diocesan Administrator.
This year the sedarii were 
captained by Mr Matthew Green 
and the men of our city,
 proud to serve under the banner of Heaven.
Surely another crown is to be found for 
Our Lady in the 
beautiful and innocent souls
 of the children of our Oratory
 pictured here after the procession  
with their chaperons.
They are truly "building Jerusalem" 
once more here in the South Pacific.
May she keep them always as the apple of her eye.
Our human eyes see perhaps
the beauty of the day,
but the wonder of a city placed under 
the mantle of our Heavenly Queen is far greater. 
Everything we saw was brought to
 the feet of their Queen
 by those who live in our city and its environs,
 a truly remarkable witness to their faith.
Our Lady of Christchurch,
turn always thine eyes of mercy towards us!

A large album of photographs may be found here: 

Sunday, April 24, 2016

A Royal Beacon on Papa Stronsay

The 21st April was the 90th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.  In celebration of this wonderful occasion, over 1000 beacons were lit across the United Kingdom starting at 7.00 pm with the Queen lighting the first.

Not wanting to be left out in giving honour to our earthly Sovereign, Papa Stronsay officially registered with the Pageant Master to host a beacon.  The beacon was lighted atop one of the Papa Stronsay pier towers.  The time assigned by the Pageant Master for the lighting of the Papa Stronsay beacon was 8.30 pm.

 Thanks be to God, the weather was perfect as the first of the necessary materials were carried to the tower-top.

Fr Magdala Maria and Br Peter Mary prepare the area with concrete blocks and sand.
 Br Seelos Maria, Br Edmund Maria and Fr Magdala Maria lift the frame of the beacon, apparently with much joy!
 The fuel to be burned was brought up bit-by-bit to the first tower, then across the wall where it was placed into the beacon.
Confrères arriving from Stronsay in Stella Maris to be present.

Br Peter Mary and Br Seelos Maria building the beacon.  Were they perhaps the only Americans to build a Royal Birthday Beacon?

Lastly the flags were hung.

The completed beacon as the sun set, awaiting the appointed hour when it was to be burned in honour of the Queen.

 Br Peter Mary, F.SS.R. was nominated to light the beacon as the community sung the national anthem:
God Save the Queen!

 Perfect weather to burn the beacon.

Fr Yousef Marie, F.SS.R. sneaks a quick peek over the battlements!

The Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer wish Her Majesty a very happy ninetieth birthday, and a happy ninety-first year!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Paschal Vigil on Papa Stronsay

Resurrexit sicut dixit!
 The Blessing of the Fire and Procession with the Paschal Candle
All the candles in the chapel are lit using the paschal fire
Exsúltet iam Angélica turba coelórum
exsúltent divína mystéria
et pro tanti Regis victória tuba ínsonet salutáris!
Let the angelic choirs of Heaven now rejoice
let the divine Mysteries rejoice
and let the trumpet of salvation sound forth the victory of so great a King!

During the Gloria the bells are triumphantly rung once again and the chapel is flooded with light as the Church joyfully proclaims the Glory of the Risen Lord.

Regina caeli, laetare, alleluia. 
Quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia. 
Resurrexit, sicut dixit, alleluia. 
Ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia!

The Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer wish you a blessed Easter

+ Deo Gratias et Mariae +

Friday, March 25, 2016

Holy Week IV: Good Friday

Holy mother pierce me through
In my heart each wound renew
Of my Saviour Crucified
Stations of the Cross on Papa Stronsay

At the sacred hour of 3pm the Solemn Ceremony of Good Friday was held in our chapel on Papa Stronsay

The Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to St John
Adoration of the Cross

+ Ecce lignum Crucis, in quo salus mundi pependit +
Venite, adoremus!

 The body of Our Lord is then carried in solemn procession to the sepulchre

Almighty and merciful God, who hast restored us by the Passion and Death of Thy Christ: preserve within us the work of Thy mercy; that by our entering into this mystery we may ever live devoutly. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.

Deo Gratias et Mariae +

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