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.
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.
Today is the feast of Bl.Joseph Vaz, the Oratorian Apostle of Ceylon, who was born in Goa in 1651 and who died in Kandy on this day in 1711. There is a detailed online life of him here and another life of him from the Oxford Oratory website can be read here. He was beatified in 1995.
Bl. Joseph Vaz
A posthumous portrait from 1720
As is customary here in Oxford on feasts of Oratorian beati we shall mark the day with Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament after the 6pm Mass at St Aloysius. The Oxford Oratory does not however run to anything like this: