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At the request of Bishop Philip Egan, the Portsmouth Diocesan Mass of Thanksgiving for the recent Canonisation of Saint John Henry Newman was celebrated at the Bournemouth Oratory-in-Formation’s Church of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Oratory Parishioners and visitors from across the diocese and beyond included Jesuit neighbours from Boscombe (who built and served this church), Priests from our neighbouring dioceses of Southwark and Plymouth, the Polish community, and the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. The Oratory’s excellent Schola was augmented for the occasion, and conducted by Richard Childress (founder of His Majesty’s Men). See Video below.

Music included Elgar’s Ecce Sacerdos Magnus, Mozart’s Jubilate Deo, Laudate Dominum by Perosi, William Sewell’s
Confitebor Tibi, and Newman’s hymns: Praise to the Holiest in the height, and Firmly I believe and truly.

The Newman Shrine, prepared for the pre-Canonisation Novena, in St Joseph’s Chapel, focused on the Relic given to the Bournemouth Oratory by the Fathers of Newman’s Birmingham Oratory, now housed in a French Gothic reliquary (which exactly mirrors the architecture of our Church), and overlooked by Br Francisco’s drawing of our Cardinal.

The Bournemouth Oratory’s Shrine of Saint John Henry Newman during October 2019. 

The Mass booklet introductory page read:

“This Diocesan Mass of Thanksgiving for the Canonisation of Saint John Henry Newman (Founder of the English Oratories) is also a thanksgiving for the completion of the Oratory House (Phase 1 of the Redevelopment Project) which was handed over a week ago, enabling the Oratorian Fathers and Brothers to move back in after an exile of 19 months. We thank Almighty God, and the prayers of Saint John Henry Newman, our Cardinal, for this significant step in establishing the Bournemouth Oratory.

Phase 2 of the Redevelopment is realising Bishop Philip’s vision to transform the extensive halls and subterranean areas into a welcome centre, as a hub for the local community (where we already feed 100 homeless rough-sleepers on most nights each week), a restaurant, and a centre of Catholic Formation for the New Evangelization.

The fund-raising brochure, published today, shows what is planned to begin next year, and invites you to be ‘One in a Thousand’ to share in this achievable and exciting project.

The Academy of the Annunciation is a related but separate (and self-financing) initiative of the Oratory Fathers in delivering the Bishop’s vision to be a centre for Catholic Formation, ‘Bringing people closer to Jesus Christ through His Church’. This was not intended to begin until the new centre is complete, but God- incidences have presented golden opportunities too good to miss, enabling the launch this Advent. Deo gratias! “

Click here to visit the official Newman Canonisation website:

Click here to visit the website of the Bournemouth Oratory.

Click here to visit the Oratory Redevelopment Appeal pages:
Click here to download Bishop Phlip’s homily:

View our Image Gallery of the Mass here:

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