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Salve, Regina

Salve, Regina, mater misericordiae;
vita, dulcedo et spes nostra, salve.
Ad te clamamus exsules filii Hevae.
Ad te suspiramus gementes et flentes
in hac lacrimarum valle. 
Eia ergo, advocata nostra, 
illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. 
Et Iesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, 
nobis post hoc exsilium ostende. 
O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria.


This prayer to Our Lady is one of the most beautifully sung hymns.  It appeared on the front page of St Nicholas’ parish newsletter this week.  It is a hymn we sing in school every Friday after exposition of the Blessed Sacrament.  If you are struggling to translate it is the Hail Holy Queen which is traditionally recited after the rosary.  During the month of October, we have been saying a decade of the rosary in the school chapel in a different language each time.  This highlights the diversity that exists among our staff and students.  Mary Our Mother is the Mother of All Nations.  We place our intercessions before her and humbly ask that she presents them to her son on our behalf.

By the time you read this we will have celebrated the last of our House Masses, those of Maryvale and Oscott.  It is fitting that we celebrate them this week, a week when we celebrate the Feast of Blessed John Henry Newman, one of our own.  The following is one of Blessed John’s prayers.  May I suggest you pray it each day in the knowledge that God has called us to himself!

May He support us all day long, till the shades lengthen and the evening comes, and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over, and our work is done. Then in His mercy may He give us a safe lodging, and a holy rest and peace at the last. Amen

Blessed John Henry Newman lived at Maryvale in Kingstanding and preached as St Mary’s College Oscott.  Pope Benedict when he visited Birmingham paid a special visit to Oscott to visit the chapel where Blessed John Henry preached. 

This week I leave you not with a reflection on next Sunday’s Gospel but with one of the most famous sayings of Blessed John Henry Newman.  Try to find yourself a quiet place to sit and pray these following words.  They may change your life.

The Mission of My Life.

God has created me to do Him some definite service. He has committed some work to me which He has not committed to another. I have my mission. I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons. He has not created me for naught. I shall do good; I shall do His work. I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth in my own place, while not intending it if I do but keep His commandments. Therefore, I will trust Him, whatever I am, I can never be thrown away. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve Him, in perplexity, my perplexity may serve Him. If I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve Him. He does nothing in vain. He knows what He is about. He may take away my friends. He may throw me among strangers. He may make me feel desolate, make my spirits sink, hide my future from me. Still, He knows what He is about.

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