Twelve Months On

It is twelve months since I last enterprised writing this blog.  Since then I have had serious doubts about blogs: what purpose do they serve?  who reads them? do they merely agitate an already turbulent social media?  I think it likely that the new media have not only changed the way we express ourselves and interact but also the matters on which we comment.    At the same time, the traditional commentariat – newspapers, radio, and TV – seem to have changed too.

The Catholic Church is in the middle of a perfect storm – with stories of clerical abuse breaking all over the place – and much of the comment is unhelpful.  The villains are evil clergy and inadequate clergy, and asking the whole laity to fast and pray is not the most obvious way forward.  Like most others, I continue to reflect on these matters but have little useful to say except that I remain glad that I became a Catholic seven years ago.  I doubt if I should take that step at this point, in a different pontificate, but, ultimately, I became a Catholic because I believe the Catholic Faith is true.  There has always been plenty to put one off and gross moral failure, as lately revealed, is just the latest of the discouragements.  We soldier on and I am tremendously grateful to the parish and community, who have never made me feel ashamed to wear the Roman collar.


Ecumenical Wedding

A lovely wedding at St Mary’s, East Hendred, conducted by a Dominican deacon and (I am not sure of this) a female minister, either URC or Church of Scotland.  A very good choir: Patrick Hadley’s ‘My beloved spake’, Durufle’s ‘Ubi caritas’, and Charles Wood’s ‘Hail gladdening light’ (a bit early for 1.45pm…).  ‘Jesu der du Meine Seele’, Bach, entertained us during the Signing.  I stood at the back and watched…..

11th August 2017

I have revisited Latin Gate – having been unsure how to do this I practised the usual avoidance – and have changed the background colour.  Having discovered this much, I plan – soon – to write a proper post.  Bear with me…..


Latin Gate

Welcome to Latin Gate, the reflections of Andrew Burnham.  I have long been fascinated by the feast of St John ante portam Latinam (6th May in the old Calendar) and one of my achievements, when I was working on the Calendar for the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham, was to suggest, successfully, that the feast be revived.  The feast of St John the Apostle in Eastertide is a more accessible notion and it counterpoints with the winter feast, 27th December),when St John is celebrated within the Nativity Octave.

Latin Gate has been of relevance to me not just because I was Vicar of St John’s, Carrington, Nottingham (1987-1994) but also because, when I wa serving as Vice-Principal of St Stephen’s House, Oxford (1995-2000), we used St John’s, Iffley Road, the original home of SSJE, the ‘Crowley Fathers’.  In Nottingham I had a house group called ‘Latin Gate’ for young couples, one of each pair being Anglican, the other Catholic.  More recently, as we were convening to discuss becoming Catholics, a group of clergy met (2008-2010) under the heading ‘Latin Gate’.