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.

Friday, 19 August 2011

Pilgrims walking with Newman

This morning I had the enjoyable task of showing a group of pilgrims around Oxford. They are a group based in the diocese of Arundel and Brighton. Information on their history and on this year's walk is on their website.

The group started in 1975 when a couple of priests in Arundel & Brighton decided that it would be a good way to mark the tenth anniversary of the formation of the diocese by organising a walk to "beat the bounds" of its territorial area. The participants enjoyed the experience and an annual walk was born. They became Ecumenical in the early 1980's and have gone on from there.

This year their walk is one linking Westminster to Birmingham via Oxford and concentrating in particular on the life of Bl.John Henry Newman. I met them after the 10 am Mass at the Oxford Oratory and provided a tour of Trinity and Oriel colleges and some of the sites associated with Newman, the other members of the Oxford Movement and their friends and opponents.

They were a varied group of nationalities and ages, and were very interested in the various places I was able to show them. I wish them well for the next stage of the pilgrimage.

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