As previously posted, we are now expectantly looking forward to the coming ordination of Deacon John Hunwicke to the Priesthood at the Oxford Oratory on Wednesday 27th June at 19:00. And with even greater joy and gladness we are able to relay news that Fr Hunwicke's First Mass will be celebrated according to the Extraordinary Form at the London Oratory the following day at 11:30.
Those familiar with Fr Hunwicke during his time in the Church of England, not least the many many devoted fans of his wonderful and informative blog (which has helped more than a few Ordinariate members, both laity and clergy, to find their way to Holy Mother Church), will recall his ardent devotion to the liturgy, particularly in its most traditional forms, and as such it comes as little surprise that he will celebrate his First Mass according to the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, a form regarded by the Holy Father himself as an 'venerable and ancient usage'.
Yet again, the Ordinariate continues to show itself as fiercely loyal not only to the patrimony of centuries of separated yet worthy practice and belief developed during its members' former days, but also to the inheritance of the wider Latin Church. That which countless generations before have held as sacred continues to be proclaimed by those individuals who, through the generosity and grace of the Holy Father, find themselves as heirs to that age-old tradition.
The wonderful diversity of the Church Catholic, even in the Latin Rite, is proclaimed by Fr Hunwicke celebrating his second Mass in the Ordinary Form of that same Rite, at the Church of the Holy Rood in Oxford. He is scheduled to celebrate that Mass as the Ordinariate Group in Oxford's usual Saturday evening Mass at 18:00 on 30th June, when the setting of the ordinary of the mass will be Palestrina's Missa Papae Marcelli.
Certainly members of the Marylebone Group (having good reason to be particular fans of Fr Hunwicke) will be in attendance at these wonderful occasions to which all are invited, and reports on this 'blog will follow in due course. What is about to unfold is something for which Ordinariate members have been praying ardently, and we rejoice that our prayers have been answered.
In these days leading up to this most significant week in the life of the Ordinariate and the Church in England, we renew our commitment of prayer for Fr Hunwicke as he prepares for ordination to Christ's Priesthood, and ask the intercession of Our Lady of Walsingham and Blessed John Henry Newman, but also of S. John Vianney that his fidelity and love for the Sacred Heart of Our Lord may be all the more imprinted on our ordinand too.