Pastoral Notes 14th December 2014

From Wednesday this week we hear the ‘O’ Antiphons, known to us through the hymn ‘O Come, O come Emmanuel’, but giving us a new title each day for Jesus. They go back to songs of the 7th century AD, preparing for Christmas. Northampton Records Office has included a lengthy article on a former bishop of Northampton in its annual publication. Dudley Cary-Elwes was ordained bishop of Northampton on 15th December 1921. The Elwes family of Great Billing, near Northampton is still fondly remembered. One member, Gervase Elwes, was a famous baritone-singer, in the 19th century, known for his rendering of Cardinal Newman’s poem of a soul coming to God, The Dream of Gerontius. Polly Elwes more recently worked for the BBC and a Mgr Val Elwes was chaplain to the Catholic students in Cambridge. Father Damien Walne now is parish priest in Great Billing, caring for the diocesan shrine of Our Lady of Perpetual Succour.