The annual LMS Pilgrimage to Oxford, in honour of the Catholic martyrs executed in Oxford, took place on Saturday 23rd June. Our third pilgrimage featured the second Solemn High Mass celebrated in the Oxford Oratory since the liturgical changes, with Fr Dominic Jacob as celebrant, Fr Jerome Bertram as Deacon and preacher, and Br Joseph Welch (recently ordained deacon) as sub-deacon. Mr Edward Stratton was MC, and an excellent team of servers was assembled for the occasion. The Mass was the Vigil of the Nativity of St John the Baptist.
After a break for lunch, Fr Anton Webb led a record-breaking sixty-strong procession from the ancient church of St Michael at the North Gate to the East end of Holywell Street. The is the route taken by the four martyrs of 1589 – the seminary priests Richard Yaxley and George Nichols, their gentleman helper Thomas Belson, and a Catholic inn servant, Humphrey Prichard – from the Bocardo prison in Cornmarket to the town gallows where thy were hanged, drawn and quartered. All four were beatified in 1987. The procession sang the Litany of the Saints on the way to the gallows, and then the Te Deum and a number of vernacular and Latin hymns while we returned to the Oratory church, where Fr Anton celebrated Benediction for us. This was a great witness to the faith in the streets of Oxford. Thanks are due to the Fathers of the Oratory for their hospitality, to Fr Dominic and his minsters, and to Fr Anton, as well as to the large number of people who came, many from long distances, to join the pilgrimage.
There are more pictures on another blog, here.