Friday, March 02, 2007

St Andrew's - The Tour Continues

Last night my blogging activity was interrupted by a call from a local nursing home to request the Last Rites for a lady who was dying. It is always a great grace to be able to attend a soul in its final hours here upon earth. There is something awesome in the words of the Apostolic Pardon: "By the authority which the Apostolic See has given me, I grant you a full pardon and the remission of all your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen". Please pray for the repose of her soul.

The Parish Church

On Thursday morning I celebrated Holy Mass in the parish Church. It is a lovely little Church with a great marble sanctuary, presumably in bright contrast with the dour interiors of the local presbyterian meeting places.

Jamie, Johnny, Lisa, Stefano & Tom

After Mass we went for breakfast at a popular cafe near the old Cathedral. It was full, not surprisingly when we saw the menu: the food was incredibly cheap and delicious to boot! I'd heard of Tai Chi, but was surprised by the taste of Chai Tea which Lisa ordered. With its strong cinnamon flavour it is very similar to the Spanish leche preparada althougn served hot rather than chilled.

Memento mori...

Originally the three main streets of St Andrew's focused on one point: the Cathedral. A magnificent and imposing edifice at the pinnacle of the town and looking out over the sea. It's importance for the whole of Scotland underscored by the fact that until the Reformation it had been the repository of the relics of St Andrew. Now all that's left are the ruins. The stones of the great walls of the Cathedral were used to build houses on a new street that would run perpendicular to the original three in the Reformers' attempt to deny the meaning and purpose of the town itself: a sort of Reformation damnatio memoriae.

Cardinal Beaton was hung from the middle window

I had to get a taxi to the station at 11.00am, so we walked back to the chaplaincy via the old Bishop's palace. The last Catholic bishop of St Andrew's was the famous Cardinal Beaton. Click on his name to get the wikepedia article on this unfortunate cleric who was hung from the window of his own home.
St Andrew's is clearly a great university with a thriving Catholic Society. Certainly one to be considered by anyone thinking of completing a university degree before appyling for the priesthood. I'd like to acknowledge my thanks to the students both for the invitation and also for their great hospitality.

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