3 June 2009

CHARTRES

Seeing all those nice pictures of the traditionalist pilgrimage to Chartres on another blog (nice except that there seemed to be a TRICOLOUR on one of them) put me in mind of my 28 years in the Diocese of Chichester. We were twinned with Chartres, and from time to time disturbing rumours reached us. Once I was queueing up after Bishop Eric's Chrism Mass to fill my stocks when the priest behind me observed: "You know, in the diocese of Chartres, they only have one oil. The bishop says the three blessings over one oil and they use it for any of the three purposes". Dear dear.

They did make Bishop Eric a canon of Chartres, which pleased him a lot. And it was nice to be able to address him as "Monsieur le chanoine". But there was a slight hiatus in his canonisation. They didn't seem to have a proper form in Latin - or couldn't find it - for appointing canons. And Eric rather fancied having something framed to hang on his wall. So, at the suggestion of Fr Roger Greenacre, his Canon Theologian, I composed an appropriate form of words, which was duly calligraphed, sealed, and framed. I ensured that the plain implication of the wording was that this was a transaction between two brother Catholic Bishops.

So, on the front cover of our Diocesan Magazine, we had a lovely picture of Eric vested in the cloth of gold set which the Empress Eugenie gave to Chartres. Rumour had it that it was only got out for Anglican canons to wear.

1 comment:

Maurice said...

Obviously tongue-in-cheek re Bishop of Chartres. Very funny. Your talent for linguistics is a great gift. Praise God. But, as you know so well, a few pious words from an ancient language on a piece of parchment do not a Catholic bishop make ....