FINANCE MANAGER

We are currently looking for a full time Finance Manager to administer our management accounting and information systems in the Cathedral.  To find out more and to apply for the role, please go to: https://jobs.rcdow.org.uk/finance-manager-westminster-cathedral/ and complete an online application.  Closing date: 12pm, Wednesday 31 July 2024.

CLERGY HOUSE RECEPTIONIST

We are seeking a part-time Receptionist for Clergy House (Tuesday and Thursday).  The successful candidate will be a clear and effective communicator projecting a friendly, professional, helpful and welcoming attitude, both in person and on the telephone.  To find out more and to apply for the role, please go to: https://jobs.rcdow.org.uk/clergy-house-receptionist/ and complete an online application. Closing date: 12pm, Tuesday 16 July 2024.

Fr Domagoj Matokovic, who was with our parish for the last year as a Deacon, was ordained Priest on Saturday 29 June.  Fr Domagoj will celebrate his First Mass with us in the Cathedral, which will also be his Farewell Mass, next Sunday 14 July at 12 noon. From September Fr Domagoj will be starting his first priestly appointment as Assistant Priest in Rickmansworth Parishes.

The Farewell Mass will be followed by a bring and share reception in Cathedral Hall, to which all are invited.  (Please note that there will be no teas and coffees after the 10am Mass that day.)  Contributions of food and drink to share would be welcome in the usual tradition of our parish parties.  Please bring these to Clergy House in advance if possible.   

RETIRING COLLECTION THIS SUNDAY

There will be a retiring collection after all Masses this weekend to enable a presentation to be made to Fr Domagoj at the parish party on Sunday 14 July.  Please give generously.

Westminster Cathedral Choir is widely considered to be one of the finest choirs in the world. Since its foundation in 1901 it has occupied a unique and enviable position at the forefront of English church music.  The Choir has now entered an exciting new chapter under Simon Johnson, the Master of Music, who is very successfully looking after its unique choral tradition. 

However, as the running cost of the choir are increasing every year, the Cathedral is finding it harder to afford it. This is an uncertain basis from which to exist and grow. The time has come therefore to be proactive in order to look after this priceless gem.  To protect the Choir for future generations we need to build strong financial foundations, so that this unique Catholic choral tradition can grow and continue to glorify God and draw new generations of people closer to God.  

‘The Westminster Cathedral Choral Foundation’ was established to help us to face the challenge and support the needs of the Choir both now and in the future.  We would like to appeal to everyone who loves the music of Westminster Cathedral Choir to consider supporting its future by becoming a Patron of The Choral Foundation. To find out more, please pick up a brochure at the back of the Cathedral or contact the Cathedral Fundraising Manager, Laura Dudhee, either by Email at cathedralgiving@rcdow.org.uk or telephone 07596 855460.

Sunday 21 April was Good Shepherd Sunday, the day on which we are invited to pray in a more fervent way than usual for priests and for vocations to the priesthood. 

It was also the weekend when the annual collection for the Priests’ Training Fund took place.  This fund pays for the priestly formation of men for Catholic Priesthood and it supports the ongoing enrichment and formation of our ordained priests in the Diocese of Westminster. We are delighted to announce that £6,052.23 was collected as the Cathedral’s contribution to the Fund

There are currently 49 men studying at Allen Hall, the diocesan seminary, 13of whom are for our own Diocese.  We also have one seminarian going through the formation in Valladolid (Spain) and one at the Beda College (Rome), presently on pastoral placement in Ruislip. There are also two on a propaedeutic year at the Redemptoris Mater House of Formation.  Last year three deacons were ordained for Westminster Diocese. 

Your gift will help to provide training to the men who responding to Christ’s call want to dedicate their lives to serve God’s people.  Thank you for your generosity and please continue praying for vocations and for all our priests.  If you do not have a donation envelope, plenty are still available at the back of the Cathedral.

To make a donation online visit www.rcdow.org.uk/donations

A huge thank you to all who supported the Friends’ Big Give Campaign for the restoration of the Cathedral Floor. We received £26,381 in online donations which, with the maximum matched funding of £25,000, has raised £51,381, plus Gift Aid on many of the donations. 

Thanks to your generosity we reached the target and succeeded in raising just under half the funds needed for the restoration of the Cathedral floor which will enable this project to move on. We are hoping to raise the remaining part of the funds needed later in the year. Thank you again for your support.

Westminster Cathedral Choir’s new CD ‘Lumen Christi: A sequence of music for the Easter Vigil’ was released on Saturday 22 March. This is the Choir’s first recording under the direction of Simon Johnson as Master of Music. The CD draws us into the mystery of the Paschal Vigil, the very apex of the Church’s liturgical year, transporting us on a journey from darkness into light through a sequence of plainsong and polyphony.

Listeners are invited to immerse themselves in the Cathedral’s own unique treasury of liturgical music, including compositions crafted by its former musicians, as well as repertoire at the heart of the choir’s work

The CD can be purchased in the Cathedral Gift Shop or via Ad Fontes website.

We are thrilled that the choir’s landmark catalogue of recordings with Hyperion Records & Universal Music Group (currently numbering some 53 albums) will become available on all global streaming platforms over the next few months. As a taster, several award winners have been available since the end of July:

BYRD: The Three Masses

JANÁCEK/KODÁLY: Masses

MacMILLAN: Tenebrae Responsories & other choral works

MARTIN/PIZZETTI: Mass & Messa di Requiem

SHEPPARD: Media vita & other sacred choral music

POULENC: Mass & Motets

VICTORIA: O quam gloriosum & Ave maris stella

The remaining 46 albums will be available at the end of November.

Hyperion have also made a Spotify playlist of the choir’s recordings, which is available here https://open.spotify.com/playlist/7E2nWQbgIJrUA5USIFfwEs

Young people (12-25) from the Diocese who were not able to go to the World Youth Day are invited to join the Westminster Youth Ministry on 2 September for a taste of Lisbon at their Summer Picnic. We will explore the theme for World Youth Day, ‘Mary arose and went with haste’, with workshops activities, testimonies and Mass with Bishop Paul McAleenan. Sign up at https://youth.rcdow.org.uk/events/world-youth-day-summer-picnic/. Please note, for Safeguarding reasons, any young person from 12-16 years old will need to be accompanied either by a parent or group leader. For 16-18 year-olds, additional sign up requirements are in place.

A huge thank you to everyone for your ongoing support to the project of improving and upgrading the lighting in the Cathedral. The lighting for the Sanctuary, the Lady Chapel and the Blessed Sacrament Chapel is now nearing completion. The next stage is the Sacred Heart Chapel which is in urgent need of rewiring with its lighting in need of upgrading. The new lighting scheme will not only enhance the prayerful aspect of the Chapel but it will help us to reduce further the running cost and our carbon emissions. Thanks to your support and generosity, we have so far raised £7,862 of the £19,000 needed. To contribute to this project, please speak to one of the priests after Mass or contact the Cathedral Fundraising Manager, Marie-Louise Van Spyk (email cathedralgiving@rcdow.org.uk or telephone 07596 855460).

Adults who regularly come to the Cathedral for Mass or live locally, and who are interested in becoming a Catholic, are welcome to join the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) group. The course will commence in early October. For enquiries and more information, please get in touch with Fr Vincent at chaplains@rcdow.org.uk or speak to him after the Sunday Masses.

There will be two Ordination Masses taking place in the Cathedral shortly. On Saturday 24 June, also at 10.30am, there will be the Ordination of Priests. Among them will be Deacon Francis Thomas (pictured left), well known to many in the Cathedral from his time here as Cathedral Intern several years ago. On Saturday 8 July at 2.30pm there will be the Ordination of Permanent Deacons. Let us continue praying for vocations to the priesthood and the religious life, remembering especially those preparing to be soon ordained deacons and priests for Westminster diocese:

Rev John Casey, Rev Marco Lazzaron, Rev Juan Sola Garcia, Rev Francis Thomas and Rev Patrick van der Vorst (Priests);

Phil Etuk, Jim McLean and Sam Mulira (Permanent Deacons)

At the end of May, Westminster Cathedral Choir made a pilgrimage to Buckfast Abbey in Devon to make their first record under Master of Music, Simon Johnson

The new disc takes in a sequence of music for the Easter Vigil, a dramatic liturgy which flows from darkness to light on the evening of Holy Saturday. Featuring polyphonic works by Palestrina, Victoria and Monteverdi, the album also includes several pieces by contemporary musicians associated with the music of the Cathedral, including Matthew Martin, Andrew Reid and Martin Baker, several of which receive their premiere recordings. The sequence is punctuated by Gregorian chants for the season of Easter, and closes with the electrifying organ piece, Incantation pour un jour saint by Jean Langlais, which draws together a number of the plainsong themes heard on the disc.

Matthew Searles, Executive Producer, said: ‘It was a great privilege to host Westminster Cathedral Choir at Buckfast again, to make their second recording for Ad Fontes. This world-class and distinctive choir is the jewel in the crown of Catholic music-making, and they sound as superb as ever’.

The new album will be released on Buckfast’s in-house record label, Ad Fontes, in the Spring next year timed to coincide with the Easter Triduum, and will be available to purchase from the usual outlets, and stream via Apple Music and Spotify.