Home for classical rite in Northampton diocese

Paul, a reader, sent me this text from the Northampton Diocesan Magazine "The Vine" (No 210, July 2007)
"Old Rite Finds Home"

The Old rite Latin Mass is being celebrated every Sunday in Bedfords Polish Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and St Cuthbert. Bishop Peter gave permission for a regular Mass at 12 noon to begin on Low Sunday.

Father Nicholas du Chaxel FSSP, a Frenchman and member of the Priestly Fraternity of St Peter will be the regular celebrant and 'parish priest' of the small community which gathers there. There have been Latin Masses around the dioscese for some time but seldom in the same place and at the same time each week.

Now Fr du Chaxel is looking forward to his 'quasi parish' as he calls it "It is wonderful for the diocese," he said, "that with the blessing of the Bishop , the people who desire the Old Mass can worship, pray, have catechesis, and live a proper Christian parochial life with some stability. I cannot express how happy I am to serve those people on a regular basis."

The Priestly fraternity of St Peter was founded by Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Ratzinger (the present Pope) in 1988 to keep the Old Mass and the old way of celebrating. The FSSP has 300 members worldwide with at least 13 ordinations each year and also priests who are joining them. Fr du Chaxel is himself a convert. He says he went to an Old Rite Mass and was immediately moved to become a Catholic.

"Vatican II had a wonderful way of summarising when it said that the Mass is the source and summit of our lives," Fr Du Chaxel told the Vine. "But it dosen't mean that once we have the sacraments there is no need for anything more. People need proper formation, to learn about the liturgy, the meaning of what we do and say. And they need to support each other, to have some kind of community."
Paul also sends the following travel information:

The Polish Church of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and St Cuthbert is at Mill Street, Bedford MK40 3EU. This is a few minutes from Bedford which has the following regular train services on Sundays:

* Every 15/30 minutes: Bedford to/from Luton, St Albans, London Kings Cross, Farringdon, City, Blackfriars, London Bridge, East Croydon, Gatwick Airport and Brighton. Journey time to Kings Cross approx 1 hour, 10 mins.

* Every 30 Minutes: Bedford to/from London St Pancras & Luton. Journey time to St Pancras approx 45-55 minutes

*Every 30 minutes: Bedford/to from Kettering/Leicester/Loughborough with alternate services continuing to Nottingham and Derby/Sheffield.

So if you are travelling it is a convenient place to break your journey and attend Mass.

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