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.

Thursday, 31 May 2012

Ordinariate Evensong at Blackfriars

Last night I attended the Ordinariate Solemn Evensong for Whitsuntide at Blackfriars here in Oxford which I publicised the other week.

The Newman Consort were once again in good voice, and sang the early sixteenth century Magnificat Regale by Robert Fayrfax; Msgr Burnham said in his words of thanks that this was rather rarely performed - I think its length may inhibit its use on other than grand festal occasions - and as something wrtten for the Court had been chosen to mark the Jubilee. The Monseigneur also made the point that such music is part of that patrimony the Ordinariate is seeking to recover and share with other Catholics. The Anglican choral tradition is indeed well suited to use such splendid pre-Reformation music which is very much part of a common patrimony for Catholics and Anglicans.

The church at Blackfriars is a very dignified setting for such services, and it was good to see the very handsome red cope and stole, together with the matching humeral veil, all decorated with fine gold embroidery, which belongs to the Priory being used.

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