Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding.
I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... It was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.
Thinking of visiting Oxford?
Allow me to be your guide... and discover the history of Oxford with an Oxford historian.
I offer a wide range of guided walks around the city and university. These can be a general introduction to the history and architecture or looking at specific themes and subjects.
I am a Catholic and a historian based in Oxford, where I am a member of Oriel College. My research, for a long delayed D.Phil., is a study of Richard Fleming, Bishop of Lincoln in the second decade of the fifteenth century. I also work as a freelance tutor in History and as an independent tour guide.
I was received into the Church in 2005 and am a Brother of the External Oratory of St Philip Neri at the Oxford Oratory.
If these rumours are true, then it is important for all those who are concerned for the success of Summorum Pontificum and for the liturgy of the Church to pray and give voice to their concern. I have said online that I would sign the letter Laurence has drafted as one means of registering that concern. True liturgical renewal, of which Summorum Pontificum is one, if not the, keystone, must not be frustrated or limited.
That said it is worth bearing in mind that these are at the moment only rumours, and the Church seems to be borne aloft on a sea of speculation. So whilst we await developments we should certainly pray and expound the merit of the Extraordinary Form, and its vital importance to the very being of the Church. It is a time to be resolute, and not to panic. There may be those in the Vatican who want to frustrate the Pope's plans, but there are also those, like Cardinal Burke, as in my recent post, who are insiders and who are definitely supportive of the Holy Father's project.