Our Bishop Visitor, Bishop Richard Atkinson of Bedford, came to celebrate All Saints Day with us and celebrated Mass for us. He also gave me his episcopal blessing as I began another term of office as the Community Leader. A few days later, I was privileged to be at the Solemn Profession of Sr Lotte of Jesus at Quidenham. It was a day of great joy and I was able to visit the All Hallows Sisters at their new home in Bungay.
Joyce Roachford, the Manager of the Care Home, St John’s, celebrated 50 years of service there this month and we were invited to join her celebration. Helen Mary was in charge of the Home for many years and Frances taught Joyce in her early days in St John’s.
Although just in September, on the Feast of St Michael and All Angels, the Sisters held a Chapter with Canon David Lawson, our chaplain in attendance and I was re-elected Leader for another 3 years.
We were delighted to attend the Transitus with our Friars in their Chapel on the eve of St Francis. They also invited us to a delicious meal afterwards in their Refectory!
We hosted a picnic in our gardens for the Parish on the Patronal Festival on the 19th September. Fortunately , the weather stayed dry! Our parish priest, Fr Phil is in the centre of the first photo and there is a photo of our Companion of many years, Virginia Bainbridge, with Bruno , her canine companion.
I was delighted to be at St Mary Magdalene’s church here in Oxford for Canon Hugh Wybrew’s Diamond – yes Diamond! – Anniversary of his ordination to the priesthood. I first knew him many years ago when he was parish priest at Pinner. It was a really splendid occasion and thanks be to God for all those years of service.
Lovely to welcome back our priest friend Arthur Mawson and his wife Pam to celebrate for us after all the Covid restrictions. Here we are in the garden outside the Guest house.
Sisters had their annual conference days at Stanton House again this month. It is a lovely setting, just outside the city and we enjoyed the surroundings and the delicious food! Our chaplain, Canon David Lawson came alongside with us.
July 2021 - Sr Helen Mary’s birthday
12th July this year was a special day here in Oxford when Sr Helen Mary reached her 90th birthday!
She decided that she would like a Eucharist celebrated by our Chaplain, Canon David Lawson followed by lunch here, cooked by our loyal chef, Andrew Tomlinson. After a rest, Helen Mary then received a small number of local guests who came to enjoy birthday cake and a glass of something fizzy to mark this important landmark day.
We were pleased that her brother, Arthur, a retired priest, was able to come and stay with us and share in the festivities. One of the photos shows Helen Mary with Joyce Roachford, Manager of St John’s Care Home and who first came to work there when she was 16 and Helen Mary was the Sister in Charge. Sr Catherine from the Sisters of the Church at Gerrards Cross was also able to join us.
March - May 2021
Take a look at some of our pictures from Spring 2021, shown below:
1. Sisters were delighted to be back in church for Holy Week - here is the Altar of Repose on Maundy Thursday at Cowley St John.
2 Just finished putting together the Easter Garden in our Upton Chapel.
3. Amazing, it’s April and to see the Rose Circle, a special place where people’s ashes are buried, covered in snow!
4. Helen Mary and Jean are just relaxing in All Saints after a busy day.
5. Helen Mary in her visor after church waiting for a lift from Frances.
6. This duck seems to have taken a liking to our grounds!
One of the best moments in January was Helen Mary getting her vaccination against the Covid virus. We Sisters are amazed at the work of the scientists in producing one so quickly and wonderful that our oldest Sister was called up so quickly.
Our friendly builder firm continues the work of replacing the roof tiles on St John’s Home and at the moment are on a very tricky stage above one of the entrances and close to the kitchens.
I can’t resist pictures of the snow so here is the Chapel and here am I, courtesy of Sr Jean Raphael as photographer. The snow didn’t last long and thank goodness didn’t turn to dangerous ice!
On the 2nd February, we celebrated the end of the Christmas season with the Presentation of Christ in the Temple in our Chapel.
Helen Mary loves the garden and gets out there whenever she can, albeit for shorter lengths of time these days. It is lovely to see signs of Spring shooting up, here are some opposite All Saints on the path leading to Douglas House.