Thursday, 28 June 2012

Favourite Pope Benedict Quotes

In her lecture at Leeds Trinity recently, Prof Tracey Rowland gave four of her five favourite quotes from Pope Benedict's writings:

1. Saints reform the Church in depth not by working out plans for new structures but by reforming themselves. What the Church needs in order to respond to the needs of the human person in every age is holiness not management.

2. Saints were all people of imagination not functionaries of apparatuses.

3. I have said very often that we have too much bureaucracy. Things need to be simplified. Everything must not take place by way of committees. There must always be the personal encounter.

4. St Paul was effective not because of brilliant rhetoric or strategies, but rather because he exerted himself and left himself vulnerable in the service of the gospel.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Expert insight to the Pope's thought

Prof Rowland at her book launch in 2010
Professor Rowland comes to Buckfast Abbey on Saturday to help us all get to grips with Pope Benedict's thinking about the New Evangelisation, especially with reference to the Ordinariate. Professor Tracey Rowland, is the Dean of the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Melbourne. She has been credited with bringing ‘Benedict to the masses’ through her research and publications on the Pope’s intellectual background. She takes the reader beyond the caricatures of Pope Benedict. Rowland exposes the reader to the intellectual beasts and chimeras that have thrown themselves at the mind of the church and then leads us to the Pope’s reaction. The teaching and writing of Professor Rowland encourages us all to continue in the new ‘Benedictine Movement’ of the Church.

There are still places available at the conference on Saturday. Please contact Fr Ian at 01752 266523, or email

Monday, 25 June 2012

Prophetic words from Pope Benedict

From Pope Benedict's "Faith and the future" (2009) Ignatius
“The church will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning. She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes . . . she will lose many of her social privileges. . . As a small society, [the Church] will make much bigger demands on the initiative of her individual members.”
“It will be hard-going for the Church, for the process of crystallization and clarification will cost her much valuable energy. It will make her poor and cause her to become the Church of the meek . . . The process will be long and wearisome as was the road from the false progressivism on the eve of the French Revolution – when a bishop might be thought smart if he made fun of dogmas and even insinuated that the existence of God was by no means certain . . . But when the trial of this sifting is past, a great power will flow from a more spiritualized and simplified Church. Men in a totally planned world will find themselves unspeakably lonely. If they have completely lost sight of God, they will feel the whole horror of their poverty. Then they will discover the little flock of believers as something wholly new. They will discover it as a hope that is meant for them, an answer for which they have always been searching in secret.

And so it seems certain to me that the Church is facing very hard times. The real crisis has scarcely begun. We will have to count on terrific upheavals. But I am equally certain about what will remain at the end: not the Church of the political cult, which is dead already with Gobel, but the Church of faith. She may well no longer be the dominant social power to the extent that she was until recently; but she will enjoy a fresh blossoming and be seen as man’s home, where he will find life and hope beyond death.”

Does anyone else see a connection with the Ordinariate here?

(Thanks to Sam who sent me this some time ago.)

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Final call for bookings for Ordinariate Conference

(The absolutely last booking can be taken on Wed 27th June.)

The New Evangelisation in the thought of Pope Benedict XVI
with reference to the Ordinariate
Saturday 30th June

A Day Conference with the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham
in Southwest England

at St Mary's Abbey, Buckfast

With Prof Tracey Rowland

in the company of the Ordinary,
Mgr Keith Newton, PA.

Professor Tracey Rowland is an internationally acclaimed Catholic Theologian and Dean of the Pope John Paul II Institute in Melbourne. She is author of several books on the thought of Pope Benedict, and lectures around the world. We are very fortunate to have her here in the Southwest.

Cost: minimum £5 towards costs.
Bookings: Fr Ian Hellyer 01752 266523 or

9.45     arrivals
10.15   Mass (Blessed Sacrament Chapel) Mgr Newton, Ordinary
10.50   Coffee in the hall
            Introductions by Mgr Burnham
11.05 - 12.20    Talk 1 - Professor Tracey Rowland
12noon Angelus
12.20 - 1.20  LUNCH  in the Grange or elsewhere
1.30 - 2.45      Talk 2 - Professor Tracey Rowland
2.45 - 3pm    Question time and discussion
3.00 - 3.30    Free time / other business
3.30     Evensong & Benediction
4.15    finish - departures

DAY NINE (Eve of Pentecost)