Saturday, 17 December 2011

Catholic history - courtesy of Pluscarden Abbey

I came across this unique piece of invaluable Catholic history whilst searching for some Advent chants from Pluscarden Abbey in Scotland.

Pluscarden has a wonderful history that, in many respects, reflects the history of the faith in Great Britain, a mix of failure, defeat, renewal and triumph.

Some years ago TV journalist, Selina Scott, carried out a fly on the wall type of documentary programme on Pluscarden. She asked the Prior why the community had such a reverence for a woman (the Mother of God).

The Prior replied (as best I can recall):

 "Because, as a community of men we need the softening influence of Our Lady. Life would be very hard and austere for us without our Blessed Mother"

That is a sentiment that, I believe, would have a resonance with all Catholics. The influence of Our Lady prevents us from spilling into a Calvinist type of belief. It keeps us in touch with the virtues of faith, hope and charity and leads us to "the Word made Flesh".

This clip dates from c. 1945 when the Priory passed back into Catholic hands and the monks returned to restore the balance of liturgy and worship to Almighty God.

It is grainy and the sound is far from ideal is a part of our living history.

Posted by - Richard Collins Linen on the Hedgerow

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