Yesterday I wrote about Poppy’s Communion but did not want to include the following because I thought it would detract from her day
Although I am believer I have not been a great one for attending Mass, like most people I attend Marriages, Funerals and Christenings. Yet up to the age of 19 my mother insisted we attend Mass every Sunday, I can remember going to Mass at 6.30pm and my mates waiting outside so we could go to the Flicks. Being a Catholic in the 1950’s and 1960’s was quite unusual at school the Catholics had to go to a separate room when assembly was in progress where we would be taught our Catechisms. If my memory serves me right there was about 10 of us in the whole School of about 500. Staff or students never treated us any differently but you did feel strange when you were marched into the assembly to hear the notices for the day. Most of my mates could not care less but some thought we were members of some secret society. How things have changed in my day the Church congregation consisted of English people with the odd Irishman and odd Pole left over from World War 2. Now completely different they’re many Black faces, brown faces at the Mass plus several Eastern Europeans. You all know my feeling about the massive immigration to the UK and the detrimentally effect it has on the UK but this is maybe not quite true as the Roman Catholic Church in GB has had a massive increase in its congregation, this I believe will begin to bring back some form of Morality and ethical behaviour to the Country. The Church of England is haemorrhaging people from its Churches because of its infatuation of being modern, Gay Marriage Gay Priest etc ; maybe they should take note of the Roman Catholics and some of the Black Church groups who are appearing in the Town. In recent years we have had a big influx of Black Britons from London and they are more then welcome and they have brought with them their Christian faith with them.
Many of the old churches in and around the borough have a sense of History something the local Catholic Church doesn’t have. My oldest Granddaughter Connie was christened in the Church at Milton Regis, which I am told is the third oldest in the country, when we stood near the font you could imagine Knights in armour from centuries ago doing exactly what we were doing bringing a child into the Christian faith a faith that has served this country well. The mass itself has changed a lot since I was a boy I can remember it still being in Latin thankfully it changed to English and some the parts itself have changed. I can never remember singing hymns plus they have changed the wording of many things like the Apostles Creed and now they say Holy Spirit not Holy Ghost, I am certainly out of date. One thing impressed me was the amount of people taking Communion, plus the amount of young families and young people attending.
I have been somewhat despondent over the years the way the fabric of this country has changed form good Christian values to the selfish self serving values of Secularism but this Communion has given me hope that there is still a future for people like me in this country.
The weekend was quite exciting on the Sunday evening a group of Portuguese met at the Taste of Portugal for a party ,Valerie and myself were also invited. What a meal we had we started with Sardines, then a Portuguese’s bean stew followed by Cod with a cheese crust and then we had the highlight Suckling Pig beautiful that was me done but some still had desert. It has only been just over a year that I connected with the Portuguese I was first introduced when Carlosh and Kim were running then Old Oak in East Street, they now run the Taste of Portugal near the railway station. I found the Portuguese, Britain’s oldest ally, great people and their food delicious one set of Foreigners who I do not mind being in this country