Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Our heartfelt thanks: My reply to the 'Special Report'

I wanted 'C' to have my reply at the earliest opportuniy and sent it early on Monday afternoon. As you will see, I asked for permission to publish her original mail on the 'Oasis', which she willingly granted later in the day. The point of telling you this, is to show that when the two emails were written, they were totally spontaneous expressions of our shared joy, and not written with a view to an 'audience'. I didn't offer them to CP & S until Tuesday, and did so for reasons given at the beginning of yesterday's post.


Sent Monday 20/09/10 13.38


My dear 'C',

It's difficult to find words that satisfactorily express the depth and strength of our thanks to you for taking the time to email me about the experience of Cofton Park. You must be exhausted, and have school today. I expect though, that the peace, serenity and joy that you drank in yesterday, are still alive in their freshness, and will always remain with the four of you. The very atmosphere that you describe transmitted itself to us via the official Papal Visit live webcast.

We too saw the papal helicopter appear in the skies; and I thought of you amongst the crowds waiting below. My heart was bursting with joy. I'm so glad you saw it on the giant screens, and then the landing and transfer, first to a car and then to the Popemobile. Even at this distance it was so exciting, and difficult to sit still, that is until the Mass began. Your presence there with 'P' increased my own sense of 'being there'.

Yes, I'm sure the Holy Spirit was present, and countless Guardian Angels too. Yours and 'P''s must have been working in tandem. As for the rain stopping when it did, when I saw that it was raining befort the Holy Father's arrival my heart sank but somehow I knew that it wouldn't continus. We weren't aware of exactly when it stopped, and only realised it whn we noticed that the plastic ponchos a lot of people had been wearing seemed mostly to have disappeared. But now you have told me exactly when it stopped, I like to think that from Heaven it was Blessed John Henry Newman welcoming his friend Pope Benedict to Cofton Park.

I would love to share what you have told me with my blog readers. Have you any objection? As you know I would keep names a secret as I have done in the past. With your permission I will do a post about it tonight.

Colin and I are still not 'down to earth', but I really must do some housework. The webcast coverage over the four days was so extensive and more of less continuous that one didn't dare leave the screen for fear of missing something!

The hostile aspect of much media build-up to the visit had really got to us. As it was, and the Visit unfolded, the fear and anxiety in our hearts gradually melted, and by the time our Holy Father went down the Vatican flag and Union Jack bedecked Mall, we could see and hear that those there to cheer him on were in a definite and vociferous majority. We were amazed that so many people had turned out to see him. I think it was at that point that we began to experience our Pope's visit with a joy unalloyed by earlier anxiety and dread. We could see it turning into a tour de force before our very eyes.

After his welcome into Hyde Park, the atmosphere changed yet again, this time to one of prayer and contemplation, leading up to Adoration and Benediction. And we witnessed again what happened at the Eucharistic Adoration during his visist to Lourdes two years ago. That stillness and silence of a vast crowd being led to adore Jesus by His chief shepherd, and theirs. But on this occasion, by the time of Exposition, it was dark and the monstrance containing the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Lord, was set, seemingly in the night sky, lit by the stars which He created. It was literally breathtaking.

Now, I'm looking forward to what the Holy Father will say about the trip at this Wednesday's General Audience...................My dear 'C', I must leave you now, but thank you once again for keeping me close yesterday. The knowledge that you and 'P' were there and doing so, made the Beatification Mass of our dear Blessed John Henry Newman, the most personally special liturgical event of the Visit. I will always treasure that memory, and also the written record of the occasion as you experienced it.

With lots of love and prayers

In lumine vultus Iesu


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