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November 19, 2013 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: bishop ad van luyn, bishop antoon hurkmans, bishop henny bomers, bishop huub ernst, bishop johannes de kok, bishop joseph lescrauwaet, communio, concilium, council of churches, diocese of 's hertogenbosch, diocese of haarlem-amsterdam, ecumenism, funeral, hans urs von balthasar, international theological commission, mass, missionaries of the sacred heart, ordination, pastoral council of noordwijkerhout, pope benedict xvi, pope john paul ii, special synod of the bishops of the netherlands, st. john the evangelist cathedral, st. john's centre, theology, twitter, university of tilburg | 2 comments
Less than two weeks ago, a short tweet from a priest friend broke the news that Bishop Joseph Frans Lescrauwaet was coming to the end of his earthly life. That end came today. At the age of 90, the retired auxiliary bishop of Haarlem leaves a heritage of study, education and engagement in numerous fields, from Church politics to ecumenism. Bishop Lescrauwaet was the second most senior Dutch bishop, with only the emeritus Bishop of Breda, Huub Ernst, before him.
Joining the congregation of the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart after a youth in Amsterdam, young Jos Lescrauwaet followed his formation as a priest during the war; his philosophical studies in Stein, Diocese of Roermond, and his theology in Raalte, Archdiocese of Utrecht. His ordination in 1948 was followed by a doctoral thesis in 1957 on a topic that would mark the rest of his active ministry: ecumenism. As a theologian, he taught systematic theology at the University of Tilburg and various subjects at the seminary of his congregation, also in Tilburg.
Originally one of the contributing authors to the journal Concilium, Fr. Lescrauwaet followed the example of Joseph Ratzinger and Hans Urs von Balthasar and started writing for the more orthodox Communio. He was one of the editors of the Dutch edition of that journal when it was launched in 1976.
Bishop Lescrauwaet’s theological expertise led to several high-profile appointments. In 1969 he became a member of the International Theological Commission. He was chairman of the council of the disastrous (though not disastrous through his fault) Dutch Pastoral Council (1966-1970) and secretary and expert during the Special Synod of the Bishops of the Netherlands, called by Pope John Paul II to repair some of the damage done in previous years.
This latter function played a part in his appointment as a bishop later on as it did for most other priests involved, such as the later bishop of Rotterdam, Ad van Luyn. In 1983, Fr. Lescrauwaet (at right, pictured around that time) was appointed as Auxiliary Bishop of Haarlem and Titular Bishop of Turres Concordiae. He was consecrated by the Coadjutor Bishop of Haarlem, Msgr. Henny Bomers, appointed on the very same day as Bishop Lescrauwaet (Bishop Bomers was already a bishop, having been ordained in 1978 as Vicar Apostolic of Gimma in Ethiopia). Bishop Ernst of Breda and Bishop Jan de Kok, Auxiliary of Utrecht, served as co-conserators.
As auxiliary bishop, Msgr. Lescrauwaet was active in many fields, and not necessary always only within the Diocese of Haarlem. These activities were often ecumenical in nature. In the final years before his retirement, Bishop Lescrauwaet was a member of the board of the Dutch Council of Churches.
It is said that there have always been tensions between Bishops Bomers and Lescrauwaet, and that these were the reason for the latter’s frequent absence from the diocese. Some blame the bishop for this absence, but those who knew him personally cherished him for his pastoral acumen and his sense of humour, which was evident even when discussing the most difficult of theological concepts.
Bishop Lescrauwaet retired in 1995 at the age of 71, for reasons of age and health, and returned to the south, where he had worked and lived before his appointment to Haarlem. He moved into the diocesan seminary of the Diocese of ‘s Hertogenbosch, the St. John’s Centre, and picked up his old job of teaching theology again. He also served as spiritual counsellor of the seminary. At left, he is pictured with Bishop Antoon Hurkmans, during the celebration of his 90th birthday last year. Ultimately, in 2011, the bishop moved back to Tilburg, to live in the retirement home of his congregation.
The Diocese of Haarlem-Amsterdam announces that Bishop Lescrauwaet’s funeral will take place from the Basilica of Saint John in Den Bosch, the cathedral near which he spent most of the years since his retirement, on 23 November. The Mass starts at 10:30. The day before, faithful will have the opportunity to visit the late bishop at the St. John’s Centre, the diocesan seminary around the corner from the basilica.
Photo credit:  Bisdom Haarlem-Amsterdam,  ANP – Cor Out,  Sint-Janscentrum
October 12, 2013 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: ad limina, adrianus cardinal simonis, bishop ad van luyn, bishop gerard de korte, bishop hans van den hende, bishop herman woorts, bishop jan hendriks, bishop jan liesen, bishop jan van burgsteden, bishop johannes de kok, bishop rob mutsaerts, bishop theodorus hoogenboom, bishop tiny muskens, bishops, conclave, curia, health, pope benedict xvi, pope francis, pope john paul ii, trouw, wim cardinal eijk | Leave a comment
After many months of speculation and a few days of ever stronger rumours, it was finally confirmed yesterday. Daily newspaper Trouw enquired with the bishops and later that same day an official confirmation was released via the Church province: yes, after nine years, the Dutch bishops are making their ad limina visit to Rome.
The details: Scheduled for five days, the ad limina visit will take place from 2 to 7 December. The bishops will be received in audience by Pope Francis on 5 December. Before and after that there will be meetings with the various offices of the Curia. Every bishops will present a report about the situation in their diocese. These reports will remain confidential. A report on the Church in the Netherlands, compiled by the bishops’ conference as a whole, will be released to the public on the first day of the ad limina.
The reason for the long delay (ad limina visits should theoretically be made very five years, although it is usually longer; nine years, however, is exceptional) is given by the bishops as the backlog created by the ailing health and death of Blessed Pope John Paul II, the conclave of 2005, the time that Pope Benedict XVI needed to get started as Pope, the slower rate of visits in his later years as Holy Father, the conclave of this year and the first months of the papacy of Pope Francis.
Of the 12 or 13 bishops that make up the conference (it is yet unclear of Bishop Jan van Burgsteden is going: he is retired, but retains some functions within the conference), Six wil be making their first ad limina. Of these, two bishops are ordinaries and four auxilairies. They are Bishops Jan Hendriks, Theodorus Hoogenboom, Jan Liesen, Rob Mutsaerts, Hans van den Hende and Herman Woorts. Of the seven who are making their second ad limina, three are doing so in other functions: Cardinal Eijk was Bishop of Groningen and is now Archbishop of Utrecht (and cardinal), Bishop de Korte was Auxiliary of Utrecht and is now Bishop of Groningen-Leeuwarden, and Bishop van Burgsteden was Auxiliary of Haarlem is now Auxiliary Bishop emeritus of Haarlem-Amsterdam.
Finally, some who were there in 2004 are now absent: Cardinal Simonis has retired as Archbishop of Utrecht; Bishop Jan de Kok as Auxiliary Bishop of the same; Bishop Ad van Luyn as Bishop of Rotterdam; and Bishop Tiny Muskens as Bishop of Breda (he has passed away since).
Some of the bishops, such as Bishops Punt and Hendriks last month, as pictured at left, have met Pope Francis before, while others haven’t. Cardinal Eijk, who is leading the delegation as president of the bishop’s conference commented: “I have met Pope Francis several times, also before he became Pope. For me it is a very special occasion to now speak more closely with him about the developments in the archdiocese and our Church province. I am really looking forward to it.”
Photo credit: arsacal.nl
Happy birthday to Bishop Adrianus Herman van Luyn, who today marks his 78th birthday.
Bishop van Luyn was born in Groningen, and became a Salesian priest and later bishop of Rotterdam. He retired in 2011.
April 21, 2012 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: adrianus cardinal simonis, archbishop andré dupuy, bishop ad van luyn, bishop antoon hurkmans, bishop gerard de korte, equestrian order of the holy sepulchre of jerusalem, father ad van der helm, father antoine bodar, father michel remery, father tjeerd visser, homily, mass, photos, ramon mangold, st. joseph cathedral | 2 comments
Today I witnessed something fairly unique, certainly for a Catholic in the north of the Netherlands: the investiture of new members of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, which took place at the cathedral of Sts. Joseph and Martin in Groningen. The choice of location was no doubt influenced by Bishop Gerard de Korte’s membership of the order.
The investiture and Mass took well over two hours. Concelebrating the Mass were Bishop Antoon Hurkmans, the Grand Prior of the Order in the Netherlands, Bishop Gerard de Korte, the ordinary of the host diocese, Bishop Ad van Luyn, emeritus of Rotterdam, and Archbishop André Dupuy, our new Nuncio. Among the new members of the Order were a handful of priests, including Father Antoine Bodar and Father Ad van der Helm, the dean of The Hague.
The whole affair also turned out to be a nice opportunity for networking, as I met photographer Ramon Mangold and, with two friends, had an animated talk with Fr. Michel Remery.
Some photographic impressions of Catholic nobility:
March 23, 2012 in World Church | Tags: bishop ad van luyn, bishop gianni ambrosio, bishop jean kockerols, bishop piotr jarecki, bishop virgil bercea, commission of the bishops' conference of the european community, european union, politics, reinhard cardinal marx | 1 comment
Following his retirement as bishop of Rotterdam, Msgr. Ad van Luyn has now also completed his six-year tenure as President of the Commission of the Bishops’ Conference of the European Community, the COMECE. Succeeding him as president of the commission that is the main channel of dialogue between the Church and the European Union is erstwhile vice-president Reinhard Cardinal Marx. The archbishop of Munich and Freising will be assisted by four vice-presidents, two more than during Bishop van Luyn’s term.
They are Bishop Gianni Ambrosio of Piacenza-Bobbio, Italy; Bishop Virgil Bercea of Oradea Mare, Romania; Bishop Piotr Jarecki, auxiliary of Warsaw, Poland; and Bishop Jean Kockerols, auxiliary of Mechelen-Brussels. Bishop Jarecki starts his third term as vice-president.
The activities of the COMECE are mainly contained to the European political arena, communicating with and about the EU on matters which touch the Church, the faith and the faithful.
December 31, 2011 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands, social media, World Church | Tags: abuse, adrianus cardinal simonis, anders breivik, archbishop andré dupuy, archbishop françois bacqué, archbishop jean-claude hollerich, archbishop rainer woelki, archbishop timothy dolan, archbishop wim eijk, archdiocese of berlin, archdiocese of luxembourg, archdiocese of mechlin-brussels, assisi 2011, beatification, belgium, bishop ad van luyn, bishop athanasius schneider, bishop cor schilder, bishop hans van den hende, bishop jan hendriks, bishop jan liesen, bishop jean kockerols, bishop jean-luc hudsyn, bishop léon lemmens, bishop rob mutsaerts, bishop roger vangheluwe, bishops, blessed titus brandsma, blog, bootcamp, consecration, deetman committee, diocese of breda, diocese of görlitz, diocese of groningen-leeuwarden, diocese of haarlem-amsterdam, diocese of rotterdam, disaster, easter, erik van goor, ewtn, extraordinary form, father herman spronck, father jan peijnenburg, father norbert van der sluis, finances, georg cardinal sterzinsky, germany, japan, joseph weterings, lent, mariënburg, mary, metropolis, music, new evangelisation, osama bin laden, papal visit, pope benedict xvi, pope john paul ii, prayer, raymond cardinal burke, salesian order, san salvator parish, social media, st. joseph cathedral, stille omgang, the passion, tom zwitser, twitter, universae ecclesiae, vatican blogmeet, vaticanum ii, world youth days | Leave a comment
As the year of Our Lord 2011 draws to a close, I happily join the ranks of the countless media channels creating overviews of the years past. And both for this blog, as well as the Catholic Church in the Netherlands and abroad, it has been a tumultuous year, both positive and negative. Taking this blog as the goggles we use to look back, blog, Church and wider world become unavoidably intertwined, but, in a way, that is how it should be.
In January, we saw the announcement of the beatification of Pope John Paul II, the resignation of Rotterdam’s Bishop Ad van Luyn being accepted, and the launch of Blessed Titus Brandsma’s Twitter adventure.
February was the month of interesting considerations by Bishop Schneider about Vatican II, shocking new developments in the abuse crisis, the announcement of a undeservedly short-lived experiment with the Extraordinary Form in the Diocese of Groningen-Leeuwarden, the first signs that all is not well in Belgium, but also three new auxiliary bishops for the Archdiocese of Malines-Brussels, and the vacancy of Berlin.
March brought us disturbing news about Bishop Cor Schilder, an extensive message for Lent from the Dutch bishops, disaster in Japan, the announcement of a great ecumenical media project for Easter, and the annual Stille Omgang in Amsterdam.
April: the month of the consecration of Bishops Kockerols, Lemmens and Hudsyn, the first EF Mass in Groningen’s cathedral, further attempts at repressing religious freedom in the Netherlands, the bishops of Belgium uniting in shock to further improprieties from Roger Vangheluwe, the pope’s birthday, further personal attacks against Archbishop Eijk and the first preparations for Madrid.
In May we saw and read about the death of Bin Laden, the beatification of John Paul II, the first Vatican blogmeet, the appointment of Bishop van den Hende to Rotterdam, the publication of Universae Ecclesiae, a prayer answered, a papal visit to Venice, enraging comments from the Salesian superior in the Netherlands, and subsequent press releases from the Salesian Order.
June was the month of papal comments about new evangelisation and sacred music, the end of EF Masses in Groningen, the pope visiting Croatia, a new bishop in Görlitz, Bishop van Luyn’s farewell to Rotterdam, advice on financial compensation for abuse victims, Archbishop Eijk taking over as president of the Dutch bishops’ conference, and the death of Cardinal Sterzinsky.
In July, Bishop Rainer Woelki went to Berlin, there was more preparation for Madrid, Bishop van den Hende was installed as bishop of Rotterdam, the pope visited San Marino, Luxembourg received a new archbishop, Bootcamp 2011 took place, Bishop Liesen appeared on EWTN, Blessed Titus Brandsma ended his Twitter adventure, and the crimes of Anders Breivik hit home for Dutch Catholics.
August was a big month because of the World Youth Days in Madrid, but we also learned about Archbishop Dolan’s explanation of the Vatican, freedom of conscience being curtailed, the 100,000th visitor of this blog, and the Liempde affair exploding in the media.
In September, the official website of the Dutch Church got a make-over, Archbishop Eijk wrote a thankyou note to the participants of the WYD, The Dutch bishops’ conference shuffled their responsibilities, and Pope Benedict visited Germany and delivered an important address to the Bundestag.
October, then, saw a successful reunion of the WYD troupe, Bishop Mutsaerts’ intervention in the ultra-liberal San Salvator parish, the bishops declining a proposal to Protestantise the Church, the consecration of Archbishop Jean-Claude Hollerich of Luxembourg, the publication of Porta Fidei and the announcement of a Year of Faith, the appointment of a new Dutch ambassador to the Holy See, the appointment of Msgr. Hendriks as auxiliary bishop of Haarlem-Amsterdam, the first Night of Mary, and Assisi 2011.
In November, Cardinal Burke came to Amsterdam, the bishops accept and put into action a plan for financial compensation for victims of sexual abuse, the Peijnenburg affair made headlines, the pope went to Benin and heartwarmingly spoke to children, priests in Belgium tempted excommunication, Cardinal Simonis turned 80, Bishop Liesen became the new bishop of Breda, and a fifty-year-old letter showed that congregations new about abuse happening in their ranks.
This final month of December, then, saw the first fifty victims of sexual abuse being able to claim financial compensation, the presentation of plans for Metropolis 2012, Nuncio Bacqué’s retirement, the consecration of Bishop Jan Hendriks, pain and horror in Liège, the appointment of Archbishop André Dupuy as new Nuncio, and the publication of the Deetman report unleashing emotional reactions everywhere.
It’s been quite the year, but one with much to be thankful for. The truth sets us free seems especially apt in this final month, but can be applied to the entire year. May 2012 be equally open, honest, but also full of blessings for the Church, the people and everyone of us.
Thank you, readers, for the continued interest. That’s incentive to keep on doing what I do here.
A happy new year, and may God bless you all.
October 1, 2011 in Uncategorized | Tags: archbishop wim eijk, bishop ad van luyn, bishop rob mutsaerts, bishop thomas dowd, film, finances, germany, god, homily, law, mass, medjugorje, msgr. georg gänswein, ordination, papal visit, politics, pope benedict xvi, statistics, translation, twitter, world youth days | Leave a comment
I think we recovered from the August dip: with 4,592 views we’re back at a level not seen since May. So that’s nice. Oddly enough, no single post was responsible for a significant percentage of those views. They’re all at fairly low numbers, from which I can only include that many people were interested in many things, if the search terms didn’t tell me otherwise. Boy, the Gänswein fan club was out in force again. Especially in the days of the papal visit to Germany, this blog lodged literally many hundreds of searches on this name or variations thereof.
Let s see if ‘Gorgeous George’ pushed any blog posts into the top 10:
1: Het opmerkzaam hart - Overwegingen over de basis van de wet 57
2: Het probleem Medjugorje 55
3: In Germany, childish behaviour before the pope comes 46
4: Impresive words from the Holy Father to the German parliament 33
5: Under the Roman Sky 31
6: Before Liempde, Bishop Mutsaerts outlines his points 29
7: A Twitter ordination, Homily at the Mass on the occasion of leaving Rotterdam 27
8: Four days before Germany, Holy Father poses the question of God 26
9: A thank you note from the archbishop 25
10: The World Youth Days’ positive result for Madrid 24
September 9, 2011 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: archbishop wim eijk, archdiocese of utrecht, bishop ad van luyn, bishop antoon hurkmans, bishop everard de jong, bishop frans wiertz, bishop gerard de korte, bishop hans van den hende, bishop herman woorts, bishop jan liesen, bishop jan van burgsteden, bishop jos punt, bishop rob mutsaerts, bishop theodorus hoogenboom, bishops, catechesis, catholic church, catholic youth day, commission of the bishops' conference of the european community, council of the bishops' conference of europe, diocese of 's hertogenbosch, diocese of breda, diocese of rotterdam, ecumenism, education, ethics, health, homily, judaism, liturgy, marriage, media, mission, pilgrimage, thomas more foundation, vocation, world youth days | 1 comment
In the past few years, the Dutch bishops’ conference has gained four new members and lost one, and now those changes are being reflected in the responsibilities that the members have within the conference. Traditionally, each bishop is a so-called ‘referent’ for a specific field of policy. For example, my own bishop, Msgr. Gerard de Korte, is referent for matters of Church and society; he has appeared often in the media about the abuse crisis, for example, an area where Church and society meet.
Now that both the Archdiocese of Utrecht and the Diocese of ‘s-Hertogenbosch have each gained two auxiliary bishops, and the previous bishop of Rotterdam has retired, these responsibilities are being reshuffled. The changes and new responsibilities are reflected in the list below:
- Catechesis: Msgr. Rob Mutsaerts (from Msgr. de Jong)
- Church and the Elderly: Msgr. Gerard de Korte
- Church and Society: Msgr. Gerard de Korte
- Commission of the Bishops’ Conferences of the European Community: Msgr. Theodorus Hoogenboom (from Msgr. van Luyn)
- Communication and Media: Msgr. Frans Wiertz
- Council of the Bishops’ Conferences of Europe: Msgr. Wim Eijk (from Msgr. van Luyn)
- Ecumenism: Msgr. Jan van Burgsteden
- Education: Msgr. Everard de Jong
- Interreligious Dialogue: Msgr. Hans van den Hende
- Liturgy: Msgr. Jan Liesen (from Msgr. Hurkmans)
- Marriage and Family: Msgr. Antoon Hurkmans
- Medical Ethics: Msgr. Wim Eijk
- Mission and Development: Msgr. Jos Punt
- New Movements: Msgr. Jan van Burgsteden
- Pilgrimages: Msgr. Herman Woorts
- Relations with Judaism: Msgr. Herman Woorts (from Msgr. van Luyn)
- Religious and Secular Institutes: Msgr. Jan van Burgsteden
- Vocation and formation: Msgr. Wim Eijk
- Women and Church: Msgr. Gerard de Korte
- Youth: Msgr. Rob Mutsaerts (from Msgr. de Jong)
One of the most striking changes for many will be the handover of the Youth portfolio from Bishop de Jong to Bishop Mutsaerts. For years, Bishop de Jong has been known as the ‘youth bishop’, a popular, enthusiastic and charismatic representative of the bishops to the young Catholics at the annual Catholic Youth Day, the international World Youth Day and other youth events. While he remains in contact with young people through his education portfolio as well as membership in the board of the the Thomas More Foundation, he will be missed by many. But who knows, maybe this will also clear the way for a somewhat more ‘serious’ direction, an appointment as ordinary of a diocese, perhaps?
His successor among the young Catholics, Bishop Mutsaerts, is relatively unknown in this specific field. Of course, he gave a great homily at last November’s Catholic Youth Day, but aside from that, there has not been much contact. I have fairly high hopes that he can be a great force for good in the formation of and engagement with the youth.
Among the other appointments, that of the theologian Bishop Liesen for Liturgy has some promise. He certainly has the international contacts that will allow him to look over the fence at how liturgy is perceived in other countries, something that the Dutch Church could do well with.
And the future? Well, perhaps another reshuffling will come in a few years. We’ll have a new bishop in Breda then, and Msgr. van Burgsteden will hopefully be enjoying his retirement, being over 75 already.
July 3, 2011 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: archbishop françois bacqué, archbishop wim eijk, bishop ad van luyn, bishop hans van den hende, cathedral of saints lawrence and elisabeth, diocese of breda, diocese of groningen-leeuwarden, diocese of rotterdam, father dick verbakel, father vincent schoenmakers, homily, immaculate heart of mary, installation, mary, mass, msgr. habib thomas halim, photos, pope benedict xvi, taizé, the passion, world youth days | 3 comments
In the presence of bishops, the nuncio, chapter members and priests from the three dioceses associated with him, Bishop Hans van den Hende was installed as the fifth bishop of Rotterdam, yesterday.
In his homily, he put the term ‘installation’ in perspective.”You are being placed, as the pope also says of himself, in his letter of appointment, that he too has been placed.” Words that not only reflect the innate humility and matter-of-factness of the Groningen-born bishop, but also his strong sense of being in communion with world Church and the pope.
Taking his place, or being placed, on the transparent cathedra in the cathedral of Sts. Lawrence and Elisabeth, Bishop van den Hende continues trends started by his predecessor, Bishop Ad van Luynm standing on the right in the photo above. Among these is the northern heritage he brings with him: both bishops were born in Groningen. Another element is the bishops’ well-developed sense of responsibility for the youth. Bishop van Luyn, even before his appointment to Rotterdam, kept searching for ways to connect to young people and communicate the Gospel to them. In the past year this has become visible in, for example, the great Passion event in Gouda, but also in Taizé on the Maas, held around Christmas last year. Bishop van den Hende has that same sense, if less pronounced. It is more something that naturally expresses itself in his actions and words. He easily communicates with young people, as he does with virtually anyone he meets, and young people notice that here is a man who not only listens, but also understands them. And that is a man that they can listen to and understand. The Catholic youth of Rotterdam are in good hands, it would seem.
After the Mass of installation – which the coming and going ordinaries concelebrated with, among others, Archbishop François Bacqué, the papal nuncio, Archbishop Wim Eijk, Msgr. Dick Verbakel, the vicar general, Msgr Schoenmakers, the general delegate of the Diocese of Breda, and priests from Rotterdam, Breda and Groningen-Leeuwarden – Bishop van den Hende consecrated his new diocese to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. This was a seemingly unplanned gesture, but fitting on today’s feast of the same Immaculate Heart. “No one opened their heart so for God as Mary did,” the bishop said. He called those present to wonder “what we can do for God, what His plan for us is.”
For more photos, courtesy of Peter van Mulken, go here.
June 21, 2011 in Catholic Church in the Netherlands | Tags: bishop ad van luyn, bishops, commission of the bishops' conference of the european community, diocese of rotterdam, faith, gospel of john, homily, jesus christ, mass, second letter to timothy, translation, vaticanum ii | Leave a comment
Related to the previous post (and originally part of it), about the retirement of Bishop Ad van Luyn as chief shepherd of the see of Rotterdam as well as the presidency of the Dutch Bishops’ Conference and the COMECE, I now have available a translation of the homily he delivered during his farewell Mass on 18 June. The emeritus bishop discusses the central position of Christ in our faith and His way as the way of love. There are many references to papal encyclicals and Council documents, as well as some personal reflections on the reasoning behind his choice of motto and coat of arms. It’s an interesting read.
For completeness’ sake, here follow the two Scripture readings read in the Mass and referred to by the bishop in his homily:
From the Second Letter of Saint Paul to Timothy (1:6-14):
That is why I am reminding you now to fan into a flame the gift of God that you possess through the laying on of my hands. God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but the Spirit of power and love and self-control. So you are never to be ashamed of witnessing to our Lord, or ashamed of me for being his prisoner; but share in my hardships for the sake of the gospel, relying on the power of God who has saved us and called us to be holy — not because of anything we ourselves had done but for his own purpose and by his own grace. This grace had already been granted to us, in Christ Jesus, before the beginning of time, but it has been revealed only by the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus. He has abolished death, and he has brought to light immortality and life through the gospel, in whose service I have been made herald, apostle and teacher. That is why I am experiencing my present sufferings; but I am not ashamed, because I know in whom I have put my trust, and I have no doubt at all that he is able to safeguard until that Day what I have entrusted to him. Keep as your pattern the sound teaching you have heard from me, in the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus. With the help of the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, look after that precious thing given in trust.
From the Gospel according to John (15:9-17)
I have loved you just as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my own joy may be in you and your joy be complete. This is my commandment: love one another, as I have loved you. No one can have greater love than to lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends, if you do what I command you. I shall no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know the master’s business; I call you friends, because I have made known to you everything I have learnt from my Father. You did not choose me, no, I chose you; and I commissioned you to go out and to bear fruit, fruit that will last; so that the Father will give you anything you ask him in my name. My command to you is to love one another.