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Sunday, 3 August 2008

Not triumphalism

This post is a belated gift promised to Dr Laurence Hemming who kindly gave a champagne reception on the occasion of his birthday.

At the reception, Fr Guy Nicholls of the Birmingham Oratory reminded me of the National Pastoral Congress in 1980, organised by the late Archbishop Derek Worlock who was Archbishop of Liverpool. At the end of the Congress, the liturgy was apparently rather grand, prompting one of the participants to ask His Grace whether this was not "triumphalist" and therefore contrary to the spirit of Vatican II.

Fr Nicholls caused the collpase of many parties and much snorting of champagne through clerical noses by suggesting that Archbishop Worlock's reply would be appropriate in the context of the Merton Conference:

"It's not triumph. It's joy!"
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