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CHAPLAIN'S MESSAGE: The Transfiguration

thumbnail image In the Bible, God often uses mountain-tops to reveal himself to people and to communicate his plans for us. For example, God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai. Jesus began preaching at the Sermon on the Mount. He often climbed a mountainside to spend time alone in prayer. Finally, Jesus was crucified on Mount Calvary and ascended to heaven from Mount Olivet. It comes as no surprise then, that Jesus chose Mount Tabor as the place for his Transfiguration. Here his divinity would be revealed to his closest disciples; Peter, James and John. As Jesus prayed, his appearance became dazzlingly white and Moses (the lawgiver) and Elijah (the prophet) appeared alongside him. Then the voice of the Father was heard declaring, “This is my beloved Son, listen to him.” The transition from the Old Covenant to the New Covenant has begun. Jesus did not come to destroy the law and the prophets but to bring them to completion. The Epistle to the Hebrews says that in times past God spoke to us through the prophets but in these last days through his Son.

The Transfiguration was a turning point in the life of Jesus; his preaching and miracles had attracted many followers, but from now on Jesus would descend into the valley of the shadow of death and journey along the road to Gethsemane and Calvary. The Transfiguration gave Jesus a foretaste of his glory and in the strength of that joy, supported by the love of his Father; he could then endure his passion and cross. Elated by the vision, the apostles did not want to leave. In Gethsemane they did not want to stay; when Jesus was arrested they fled.

Like the apostles, we fear moments of trial and suffering in our lives. We forget that Jesus never said his followers would have a great time or a “rose garden”, but rather a garden of olives and a crown of thorns. “If anyone will come after me, let him pick up his cross daily and follow me.” The Transfiguration was the mountain-top experience of the apostles which would prepare them for their future trials. The Mass is our mountain-top experience which prepares us to face and conquer the trials of our life, knowing that nothing can separate us from the love of God made visible in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Fr Michael Donaghy

See also: College of Chaplains


thumbnail image Friday 15 March
09.30 Hinsley Room Fitness and Coffee Morning
18.15 Cathedral Stations of the Cross
19.00 Cathedral Hall Charismatic Prayer Group

Saturday 16 March
Second Collection at 6pm Mass: CAFOD Family Fast Day
10.00-12.00 Horseferry Road Prayer and Life Workshop
10.00 Hinsley Room Centering Prayer Group
18.00 Cathedral Woldingham School Choir sings at Mass

Sunday 17 March SECOND OF LENT
Second Collection: CAFOD Family Fast Day
12.00 Hinsley Room Catholic Grandparents’ Association
13.00 Cathedral Divine Mercy Prayer Group
14.00 Hinsley Room Filipino Club
16.45 Cathedral Organ Recital: Jonathan Allsopp
(Westminster Cathedral)
19.45 The Windsor Castle Young Adults’ Group

Monday 18 March
11.30 Hinsley Room Prayer Group
18.30 Hinsley Room Christian Meditation Group
18.30 Cathedral Guild of the Blessed Sacrament
19.00 Clergy House Room 2 Studying the Catechism Together

7,8,10.30am Masses in St Joseph’s Chapel
9.00/13.00/18.00 Cathedral Hall Joy of Hope Sessions
16.45 Cathedral Vespers
17.30 Cathedral Mass: Cardinal Vincent
18.30 Cathedral Guild of St Anthony

Wednesday 20 March
16.00 Hinsley Room Interfaith Group
17.30 Cathedral Hall Mass (said)
19.30 Cathedral Concert: Stabat Mater

Thursday 21 March
10.00 Hinsley Room Mother and Toddler Group
13.15 Hinsley Room Art Class
17.00-21.00 Horseferry Road Prayer and Life Workshops
18.30 Clergy House Room 2 Legion of Mary

Friday 22 March
09.30 Hinsley Room Fitness and Coffee Morning
18.15 Cathedral Stations of the Cross
19.00 Cathedral Hall Charismatic Prayer Group

Saturday 23 March
10.00-12.00 Horseferry Road Prayer and Life Workshop
10.00 Hinsley Room Centering Prayer Group
18.00 Cathedral Mass:RCIA Scrutiny

12.00 Hinsley Room Nigerian Catholic Association
13.00 Cathedral Divine Mercy Prayer Group
14.00 Cathedral Hall Filipino Club Charity Tea Dance
14.30 Hinsley Room Oblates Group
16.45 Cathedral Organ Recital: Peter Stevens joined by David de
Winter (tenor), Westminster Cathedral
19.45 The Windsor Castle Young Adults’ Group


thumbnail image Dear All
I hope this finds you all in good health and strength. It is now a little over a month since my departure to continue my studies in Rome. Until then, Westminster Cathedral had been my home among you for close to seven years, and, in fact, it still feels like home to me. During my time and ministry among you, I felt welcome and loved. I couldn’t have asked for a better and more fulfilling experience, even among my own people. The smiles were genuine, the embraces warm and even the occasional (very rare) disagreements felt constructive and helpful. But I must register that your overwhelming show of support and very kind financial donations at my departure and afterwards, succeeded in surpassing my wildest expectations. For all of this, I say thank you and pray for the good Lord’s blessings upon you.
Rome, as many of you will know, is a beautiful and special city. I therefore feel privileged to be back here to complete my studies. Full-time academic work imposes a rather different routine to the one I was used to at the Cathedral; but it is fascinating. I trust that with a bit of hard work on my part, your prayers and A LOT of God’s grace, everything will end successfully here. Till then and ever after, I shall keep you all in my prayers. If we are spared and God permits us to meet again, we shall smile indeed!
With gratitude and best wishes for a blessed Lenten Season.
Sincerely, Fr Michael Quaicoe


thumbnail image The season of Lent is a time for renewal for each one of us, a time to draw closer to the Lord, so that he might pick us up and set us again on his pathway of the fullness of life. The steps we are invited to take during Lent include the three traditional Lenten practices of prayer, fasting and almsgiving.
This year our parish is supporting the Cardinal’s Lenten Appeal through the Lenten Alms collections. The Appeal was set up to fund initiatives in parishes, schools and charities within the Diocese, contributing to three mission areas of the Church:
Marriage and Family Life, enriching and supporting marriages, the essential building block of society and the Church
Youth and Evangelisation, supporting young people, the future of the Church, as they grow in their relationship with God and deepen their Catholic faith and
The Church’s Service in Society, putting our faith into action by serving the poor, the lonely and the marginalised.
This year, the Cardinal is asking us to think about the last of these in particular, and he has launched a new programme focusing on Food Poverty. This affects so many families across the Diocese, but much of it remains hidden. Did you know, for example, that over half of the people who use foodbanks have at least one household member in work? Through Caritas Westminster, we already contribute to foodbanks and other initiatives to relieve poverty. This new programme will help to fund additional food relief initiatives and provide the additional skills and resources needed for people to become independent. Please take a donation leaflet as you leave Mass today. Then please pray and reflect on your ability to make a Lenten sacrifice and consider choosing the Cardinal’s Lenten Appeal as part of your almsgiving. Gift Aid envelopes are available attached to the leaflets. On behalf of Cardinal Nichols, thank you for your generosity throughout the year, in many different ways.


thumbnail image Join Westminster Cathedral Choir on Wednesday, 20 March at 7.30pm for Stabat Mater, an evening of reflective music focussing on the Crucifixion, seen through the eyes of Our Lady. Readings will intersperse the polyphony and chant sung by the Choir, which will include works by Victoria, Lotti, Bruckner and Tallis, culminating in Palestrinas majestic eight-part setting of the Stabat Mater. Tickets are now available from the Cathedral Shop or www.ticketmaster.co.uk .

Related links: Link for Tickets


thumbnail image The Passage is raising funds through the Big Give from 12 noon Tuesday, 19 March–12 noon Tuesday, 26 March to support its work with homeless people moving from Street to Home. Double your Donation, Double your impact. This is a matched giving scheme for online donations. If someone (it can be a company, individual or trust) gave £10 online, matched giving of £10 would bring the Gift up to £20 (and for individuals to £22.50 with Gift Aid. With higher rate tax relief it may cost the donor less than £10). For more information ring Andrew Hollingsworth 020 7592 1856 andrew.h@passage.org.uk. Donate at www.thebiggive.org.uk/thepassage2019. The maximum is £25,000 from any one donation. It is not a limit per person.

Related links: Link to the Big Give Donation Page Email for Andrew Hollingsworth


thumbnail image The Westminster Cathedral Interfaith Group will meet on Wednesday, 20 March at 4pm in the Hinsley Room. Our speaker will be a former Canon of Westminster Abbey, the Rev’d Robert Reiss, on death and dying. All are welcome and there is no charge.


thumbnail image On Tuesday, 5 March we will begin a trial of two new votive candle stands in the Lady Chapel. These provide a smokeless candle that will not cause damage to the interior of the Cathedral and when used properly will not cause wax to be spilt on the floor or on furnishings. They are also environmentally friendly as they do not rely on aluminium or plastic cups. Please do take a look at further information by the stands and follow the instructions when lighting candles. Feedback will be gratefully received.


thumbnail image Thanks to those who have already volunteered to help with the clearing and development of the Hinsley Room garden. There will be a meeting regarding this at the Cathedral Clergy House, 42 Francis Street, on Saturday, 16 March at 1.30pm. Please contact Fr Daniel for further details: danielhumphreys@rcdow.org.uk.

Related links: Email for Fr Daniel Humphreys


thumbnail image This Lent we will be offering a chance to see the CaFE resource The Joy of Hope on four Tuesdays at 9am, 1pm or 6.30pm in Cathedral Hall. This very watchable resource includes a film of about 20 minutes explaining our hope as Christians as explained in the Book of Revelation and will be led by one of the Cathedral Chaplains. We encourage everyone to consider taking up one of these sessions each week for Lent! The first sessions will be on Tuesday, 12 March. Please do join us.


thumbnail image Our group comes together every Thursday morning during term time from 10am to midday for coffee, chat and catechism. The sessions offer a chance to get to know other mothers within our parish, to support each other on the journey of Catholic family life. Everyone welcome with babies and toddlers. Please contact Alexandra Watson for further information, or just turn up at the Hinsley Room. Contact aphilpotts@cantab.net

Related links: Email for Alexandra Watson


thumbnail image The next meeting of young adults at Archbishop's House will take place on Tuesday, 2 April at 6.30pm. These meetings are an opportunity for young adults to come together following the Synod of Bishops meeting on Youth last October, pray, have input from one of our diocesan bishops, reflect and discuss the place of faith in the life of young people. Bishop John Sherrington will be leading our reflections this time. All young adults are invited to attend. Please let us know by emailing youth@rcdow.org.uk. For more details, go to www.dowym.com/events.

Related links: Email for Westminster Youth Ministry Westminster Youth Ministry Events Page


thumbnail image The Westminster Diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes, led by Cardinal Vincent Nichols, will take place from 20-26 July. For further information please contact Tangney Tours on 01732 886666 or see www.tangney-tours/westminster.

Related links: Link to Tangney Tours


thumbnail image The Filipino Club will be holding a Charity Tea Dance on Sunday, 24 March in Cathedral Hall starting at 2pm. Sandwiches, cake, tea/coffee will be served during the afternoon and there will be a raffle. Entrance tickets will be available at the door, price £5. All are welcome.


thumbnail image Friday 3 May to Thursday 9 May 2019

The Order of Malta takes a group of pilgrims with us every year on pilgrimage to Lourdes, flying from and back to Stansted. The pilgrimage includes a full programme of religious events, with lively and fun activities and opportunities for sightseeing also available. Nursing and medical care is provided as necessary. We invite applications from interested sick, disabled and older people to join the pilgrimage, with accommodation in the Accueil Notre Dame. Pilgrims are asked to make a contribution of £300 towards the cost of some £600, but this can be reduced in cases of need. Anything over £300 would be gratefully received to help other pilgrims. For further information, please contact Mrs Kim O’Connor, our Head Nurse, before 14 January: k6oconnor@aol.com

Related links: Email for OMV Head Nurse


thumbnail image American taxpayers can receive a US income tax deduction for their contributions to support the work and heritage of the Cathedral by directing their contributions to American Friends of Westminster Cathedral, Inc., a non profit 501(c)(3) Organization (EIN # 13-2983174).

They will also enjoy special events and receive newsletters about Cathedral activities. Donations may be made through bequests and charitable trusts.

Contact Ms. Una Chang, President, American Friends of Westminster Cathedral, Inc., P.O. Box 92, New York, New York 10185-0092, e-mail UChang1@aol.com

Related links: Click here for email


thumbnail image This takes place in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel every Monday to Friday following the 1.05pm Mass until 4.45pm.