Saturday, July 2, 2011

Requiem for Bishop Ambrose Griffiths OSB, KC*HS

Yesterday (1st July) we had the Requiem Mass for Bishop Emeritus Ambrose Griffiths OSB, KC*HS in St Mary's Cathedral in Newcastle. This was the third such Mass (previously in Leyland, then here on the day of the reception of his body) & was to be followed by yet another at his home monastery at Ampleforth where he is to be buried.

The Mass was (thank God) quite orthodox without the dancing & clapping to which Bishop Ambrose was attracted. Nor did we have official representation from the YMT which he founded. They were otherwise engaged.

Strange to say the Introit (in Latin) was from the Missa pro Defunctis as was the In Paradisum. It seems as if someone noticed late in the day (the night before actually) that the cathedral choir couldn't sing these items and so a small schola of Peter Locke, Lawrence Valentine & Gerry Langley were quickly recruited to fill the gap. Sad to say the In Paradisum wasn't good.

As Bishop Ambrose had been Prior to the Northumbrian Section of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem during his episcopy there was a small contingent of the Order (4 Knights and 1 Dame) present (including myself) to form a Guard of Honour as the hearse left after Mass. Although Bishop Ambrose was also a Member of Honour of the Knights of St Columba there was no official presence but 2 Brothers were in attendance personally.

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