» On 19 September a couple of monks from St Joseph's Abbey in Louisiana (USA) stopped by and were welcomed to Douai. They left a jar of their honey and a bar of the soap the monks produce at St Joseph's.
» On Thursday a mysterious delivery was discovered in our post room. A large bag of new and unused business class amenity kits from various airlines. There were enough for every monk in the house, and some visiting monks, to receive one each. To our mystery benefactor, thank you.
» Last Sunday Fr Abbot went to Kemerton to celebrate Mass with Fr Francis on the occasion of the 175th anniversary of our church there. The church has recently had renovations, incudling a restoration of stencilling work in the sanctuary.
» Last Monday about 8 of the brethren went to the convent of the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary in nearby Cold Ash, where we have offered Mass for decades, as lunch guests of the sisters. It was a very successful occasion with a fine meal served.
» On Wednesday last Fr Alban travelled up to Oxford with the Abbot President for a symposium held at Blackfriars Hall entitled The Three Traditions of Discernment, namely the monastic, the Thomistic and the Ignatian. Fr Alban, along with Dame Laurentia of Stanbrook, presented the monastic tradition of vocational discernment.
» Also on Wednesday night Fr Hugh offered a Missa Cantata for the Knights of Malta at St James', Spanish Place in London. The next day Fr Gervase travelled to Buckfast Abbey for several days to lead an oblates' retreat.
» This weekend Frs Abbot, Finbar and Peter are in Douai, France, for the 225th anniversary of the closure of the English College there. The college, famous for its production of the Douay bible, was a victim of the French Revolution.
The English College, Douai c. 1790
» Sadly our ducks have suffered another attack by a dog loose on our property. One duck died and another was mauled badly. Please do not bring your dogs to Douai. Time and again we have seen that when dogs sight the ducks or chickens their owners cease to have any control over the hounds. So it is best if they are not brough at all on to monastery grounds, which for all our genuine hospitality, is still private property. Needless to say no one took responsibility for the attack or offered compensation.
» Another reason for ridding our grounds of trespassing dogs is that this weekend a large troop of French scouts will be camping in the monastery meadow. Their presence will certainly be noticeable, and welcome, at Sunday Mass!