22 June 2009

Ss John Fisher and Thomas More

I have often wondered on how close John Fisher and Thomas More were in life since they have become almost inseparable as saints in Heaven. This interesting article from Edward Surtz, SJ highlights that it was, in all probability, through a meeting of minds rather than hearts that they are linked in life. From Heaven, they offer to us today, great inspiration in matters of state and Church. Conscience over convenience.

They are suitable candidates to guide Parliament on this day when it will chose it's new Speaker. The safe money is on Margaret Beckett though many of my friends would prefer the other woman, Anne Widdecombe. Let's see shall we. I recall Margaret Beckett on Question Time just after Blair had made some awful gaff that no one could defend and yet she backed him to the hilt. Admirable was her loyalty and, as I recall, it was soon after this she was announced the first female Foreign Secretary. Pity her cabinet career didn't go stratospheric, really. Then again, she's been in the background of New Labour since it's beginning, being one of John Smith's darlings. I hope you do well, Margaret. I suspect the House will be well served in you. An interesting surname, given Thomas Becket's run-in with the whole Church/State relationship. Perhaps they added to a 't' to disguise their lineage (wink).

Another reason to celebrate is the anniversary of a friend's ordination to the Diaconate. We are now well and truly into the ordination season. Whilst Phill is now a fully fledged Priest of some standing (his anniversary of ordination to priesthood passed on 31st May) it is good to recall that all priests are deacons too. When I am ordained in three weeks I will remain ordained a deacon.

Finally, let us remember in our prayers our own priest. Those whom we know well and those who we have been asked to pray for. If you are following the Birmingham Diocesan Year for Priests Poster, then you will know today we are asked to pray for Fr Bernard Anwyl. Interestingly, or not as may be the case, Fr Bernard was one of the first priests who I talked to about my own inspired vocation to the priesthood, so God bless you and thank you, Father.

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