Our postal address is 70 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, WC2A 3JA. You will find us on the east side of Kingsway, a few steps from Holborn Station (LT).
You can contact us on 020 7405 0376.
Our email address is email@example.com.
During this summer period, we offer you a brief guide to this church. We have a fuller guide available from the parish office and a booklet ‘HOLBORN London’s VIA SACRA’ a brief but inspiring account of the courage and heroism shown by the Saints and Martyrs in Holborn who gave witness to the Faith during the Reformation.
A short tour around the church of St Anselm and St Cæcilia’s.
1) As you enter the church, to the left there is the Baptistry. The Large Crucifix is venerated throughout the year, but especially on Good Friday when the faithful kneel one by one to kiss the feet of Our Blessed Lord. There is also a plaque to Edith Gwen Kinghorn, wife of Tony Kinghorn, who for many years was an altar server in the church.
2) Statue of St. Thérèse of Lisieux. The Little Flower who, from the age of fifteen until her death at 24, lived a hidden life in the Carmelite convent in Lisieux. She is one of the most popular saints the world has ever known – a Doctor of the Church. Her Little Way of spirituality emphasizes the seeking of holiness in the simple and the ordinary.
Proceed alongside the left hand aisle of the church, where you will see the continuation of:
3) 14 Stations of the Cross on either side of the church; each recalls an aspect of the suffering of Our Lord on Good Friday.
In between the Stations of the Cross and at various positions around the church, small tablets in red with a gold cross are set in the walls, with a small candle holder fixed in front. These are points where the Bishop anointed and consecrated the church in 1959.
Further along the left aisle, past the 14th Station are 2 plaques.
4) The Colonna Crucifixion, after Michaelangelo, circa 1542, commemorates Canon Francis Bartlett, who was parish priest of St. Anselm and St. Cæcilia’s from 1977-1985.
5) This plaque is to the memory of Charles T. Fisher IV, an American Banker who worked near the church and died in the Lockerbie air disaster in 1988, three days before his 36th birthday. The door to the right leads down to the Parish Room.
6) The Sanctuary, with the altar – the focal point of the church. On the left of the sanctuary is the Ambo from which Holy Scripture is read.
7) The Sanctuary lamp is the gift of the legal profession (in its two branches) and signifies the presence of God in the Tabernacle that contains the Eucharist.
8) The Tabernacle, which contains the vessels in which the Blessed Sacrament is reserved. To the left, set in the wall is a small recess, the Aumbrey, where the Holy Oils are placed for baptism and anointing the sick. To the right, again set in the wall, is the piscina where water used sacramentally is disposed of directly into the earth. Nowadays the piscina in the Sacristy is used for this purpose.
9) On either side of the Tabernacle are two roundels bearing the Instruments of the Passion and above are sculptures of Christ crowning Our Lady, Queen of Heaven, surrounded by Angels, with the patron Saints, Anselm to the left and Cæcilia on the right.
10) High above is the wooden canopy or Baldacchino, painted in blue with gold leaf. Depicted in the centre is the symbol of the Holy Spirit (a dove) and roundels in four corners with IHS, which, in Greek are the first letters for Jesus, Son and Saviour.
11) Proceed halfway along the centre aisle then, facing the Sanctuary, look up to the Great Cross, with statues of Our Lady standing on the left and St John on the right of the suffering Christ. Behind this scene, on the left, is the organ loft, which is better viewed from the right aisle alongside the Sanctuary.
12) Here are the doors leading to the Sacristy, with the large painting of the Descent from the Cross hanging on the South wall. This is reputed to have been painted by Benjamin West, but is also attributed to John Marcus Rigaud RA. In the Old Sardinian Chapel it hung above the High Altar.
13) As you leave this passage, look up towards the West Window with the stained glass depiction of Christ rising from the flames, just as a phoenix rises from the ashes, with images of St. Anselm and St. Cecilia to the left and right. This window commemorates the fire on Christmas Day 1992 when much of the church roof was destroyed as a result of an electrical fault in the main organ. Below is the choir gallery with organ and console to the left.
14) The first Station of the Cross begins along the South wall, Jesus is condemned to Death. Look for the young apprentice carrying nails for the crucifixion.
15) Further along on the left is a statue of The Most Sacred Heart of Jesus. It was the visions of St Margaret Alacoque in 1673-5 which gave definite shape to the object of devotion and its practices. The feast day is observed on the Friday in the week after Corpus Christi.
16) Our Lady’s Altar. Tradition maintains that the Lady Altar was the High Altar of the Old Chapel. According to an old parchment, which may date from around 1700, the altar stone of the High Altar in the old Chapel came with its relics from the Lady Chapel of Glastonbury Abbey. This area of the church was bombed during the Blitz in 1940, but restored after the war. There is a piscina to the right of the altar.
17) To the right of Our Lady’s Altar is the Chapel of St. Thomas More – A Man for all Seasons. An inscription on the wall describes St. Thomas’ time as a bencher of Lincoln’s Inn and Lord Chancellor. Having opposed King Henry VIII over his divorce and martyred on the grounds of having opposed the Act of Supremacy, he was beheaded in the Tower of London in 1535. St. Thomas was canonized in 1935.
18) Halfway along the South aisle is St. Joseph’s Altar. The mosaic was commissioned in 1962 by Father Joseph Scholles, then Parish Priest, in memory of his father, Joseph Scholles, who died around that time. The mosaic depicts St Joseph, protector of the Universal Church, holding the church of St. Anselm and St. Cæcilia in his hands. Inscribed in Latin on the front of altar is – Sancti Joseph, Ora pro nobis. (St. Joseph, pray for us). On the left is a statue of St Joseph carrying the infant Jesus and holding a lily in his right hand – a symbol of purity.
19) To the right of St. Joseph’s altar are the confessional boxes.
20) Above the West end of the Lady chapel is the Royal Sardinian coat-of-arms, which originally surmounted the organ in the old Sardinian Chapel.
21) Approaching the last row of benches, behind the pillar is a statue of St Jude, much invoked as the patron of hopeless cases and lost causes.
22) To the right is the small altar and statue of St Anthony of Padua, a simple and humble Franciscan Friar and Doctor of the Church who preached the Good News lovingly and with fearless courage, much invoked in cases of special difficulties and commonly referred to today as the finder of lost articles. Usually depicted with a book and the Infant Child Jesus in his arms. He was thought by his fellow friars to be uneducated yet became one of the great preachers and theologians of his day.
23) Statue of St Peter. In the Middle Ages pilgrims who reached Rome, touched and kissed the foot of the statue and prayed to St. Peter, asking that he be merciful and open the gates of Heaven for them if they died during the pilgrimage.
13th July 2014
In the parable of the sower Jesus reminds us that we need to listen to what God is saying to us. For many of us, this can be hard. There seems so many things we have to do each day and there seem so many distractions. Jesus understands this, which is why he gives us four examples of seeds falling on the ground. He is saying that it is only when we act on the word of God that our lives will change and bear fruit.
Many seafarers are hungry for the word of God. They often spend weeks or months at sea, with no human contact apart from other crew members. In such circumstances, it is easy to feel isolated, lonely and cut off from the spiritual life of the Church.
When Apostleship of the Sea chaplains visit ships in port, one of the things they try to do is help the seafarers to receive the word of God into their lives and nurture it. They might do this by praying or reading the Bible with them, or arranging for them to attend Mass in a local church. By sowing the Word, chaplains help seafarers grow in faith, which is what Jesus calls us all to do.
This Sunday we pray for all seafarers, and ask Our Lady, Star of the Sea, to keep them safe from all harm and to support the members of the Apostleship of the Sea in their pastoral ministry.
Did you know…..? Over 90% of merchandises worldwide are transported by nearly 100,000 ships, run by a workforce of approximately 1.2 million seafarers of all races, nationalities and religions.
Fr David Barnes, PP
PRAYER FOR SEAFARERS: Dear Lord Jesus Christ, we thank you for seafarers who bring us food and goods from all over the world. We pray that you will protect them and keep them safe. Amen. Our Lady, Star of the Sea, pray for them.
FIVE FINGER PRAYER GUIDE
6th July 2014
1. Your thumb is nearest you. So begin your prayers by praying for those closest to you. They are the easiest to remember.
2. The next finger is the pointing finger. Pray for those who teach, instruct and heal. This includes teachers, doctors, nurses, counsellors, priests, sisters
and others in the caring professions. They need support and wisdom in pointing others in thc right direction. Keep them in your prayers.
3. Next is the tallest finger. It reminds us of our leadcrs. Pray for our leaders in government, business and industry. These people shape our nation and guide public opinion. They need God’s guidance.
4. The fourth finger is our ring finger. Surprising to many is the fact that this is our weakest finger, as nursery piano teachers will testily. It should remind us to pray for those who are weak, in trouble or in pain.They need our prayers day and night.
5. Lastly is our little finger, the smallest of all. Here we should place ourselves in relation to God and others. Your little finger should remind you to pray for yourself. You yourself know best your own needs and concerns.
PRAY THE ROSARY, even if you don’t have your rosary with you, with eight fingers and two thumbs you have “a decade”.
HANDS ARE INSTRUMENTS OF PRAYER LOOK AT YOUR HANDS & REMEMBER TO PRAY.
SAINT PETER AND SAINT PAUL, APOSTLES
29th June 2014
The Church founded by Christ has SS Peter and Paul as its principal pillars. Peter was chosen by Christ to be his first Vicar on earth, endowed with the power of the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven (Mt 16:13-19) and charged with the role of Shepherd of Christ’s flock (Jn 21:15-17). In Peter and his successors, the visible sign of unity and communion in faith and charity has been given. Divine grace led Peter to profess Christ’s divinity. St Peter suffered martyrdom under Nero, in A.D. 66 or 67. He was buried at the hill of the Vatican, where recent excavations have revealed his tomb on the very site of the Basilica of St. Peter. Paul was chosen to form part of the apostolic college by Christ himself on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:1-16). An instrument selected to bring Christ’s name to all peoples (Acts 9:15), he is the greatest missionary of all time, the advocate of pagans, the Apostle of the Gentiles. St. Paul was beheaded in the Tre Fontane along the Via Ostiense and buried nearby, on the spot where the Basilica bearing his name now stands (St Paul-outside-the-Walls).
(From the Daily Roman Missal, Scepter Press New York)
22nd JUNE 2014
“Let us ask ourselves….adoring Christ today present in the Eucharist: do I let myself be transformed by Him?” said Pope Francis last Thursday.
The following is an extract from Pope Francis’ homily, and is his commentary on the question as to how the multiplication of the loaves came about.
The answer lies in the invitation of Jesus to His disciples. “You yourselves give (to them)….,” “give,” share. What do the disciples share?
What little they have, five loaves and two fish. But it is precisely those loaves and fish that in God’s hands feed the whole crowd.
And it is the disciples, bewildered by the inability of their means, by the poverty of what they have at their disposal, who invite the people to sit down, and - trusting the Word of Jesus - distribute the loaves and fish that feed the crowd. This tells us that in the Church, but also in society, a key word that we need not fear is “solidarity,” that is, knowing how to place what we have at God’s disposal! Our humble abilities! It is only in the sharing, in the giving of them, that our lives will bear fruit. Solidarity: a word upon which the spirit of the world looks on unkindly!
Once again, the Lord distributes for us the bread which is His body, He makes a gift of Himself. We, too, are experiencing the “solidarity of God” with man,a solidarity that never runs out, a solidarity that never ceases to amaze us. God draws near to us, in the sacrifice of the Cross. He lowers Himself, entering into the darkness of death in order to give us life, which overcomes evil, selfishness, death.
Jesus today gives Himself to us in the Eucharist to share our journey - indeed He becomes food, real food that sustains our life even at times when the going is rough, when obstacles slow down our steps. The Lord in the Eucharist makes us follow His path, that of service, of sharing, of giving, and what little we are if shared, becomes wealth, because the power of God, which is that of love, descends into our poverty to transform it.
Let us ask ourselves, adoring Christ truly present in the Eucharist, do I let myself be transformed by Him? Do I let the Lord give Himself to me, guide me to come out more from my little fence, to get out and be not afraid to give, to share, to love Him and others?
Discipleship, communion and sharing. Let us pray that participation in the Eucharist moves us to follow the Lord every day, to be instruments of communion, to share with Him and our neighbour who we are. Then our lives will be truly fruitful. Amen.
Pope Francis, 19 June 2014
THE MOST HOLY TRINITY
15th JUNE 2014
The human face reveals so much of who we are, and of what is going on in us. Pope Francis describes the TRINITY as “the face of God.” So today’s Feast of the MOST HOLY TRINITY celebrates the fact that GOD is revealed to us as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. This revelation is God’s way of loving us, an act of faith and trust in humanity – in each of us – a declaration that God wants to be known and loved by us. Our response to God is enlivened the more we appreciate how infinite is God’s faith and trust in us: for we only reveal our inner self when we know we can trust someone. So today we celebrate too the fact that God has such faith in us and trusts us. God has complete faith in me: why do I not have complete faith in Him?
The revelation is that God is Father, Son and Holy Spirit, three persons but one God. God is a community of life and love, and we are called to know God on a personal level, not as some abstract reality.
Jesus alone reveals God fully to man, and so it is to Him that we come: we are to be Christ centered. We express this most fully through the Mass, when in holy communion Christ shares himself fully with us. This we celebrate next Sunday on the Feast of Corpus Christi. The more Christocentric I am, the more I will understand who I really am! The more I recognise my true identity the more I will want to fall down and worship the God who made me, and wants me to know and love Him now and for all eternity – that is true happiness and fulfilment.
Fr. David Barnes, Rector
8th June 2014
“Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful..”
This is our prayer today as we celebrate the Birthday of the Church. The Holy Spirit enlightens us, and leads us out of the dark places of our life. The following words of Joyce Rupp, and her poem, can helps us ensure how to let the Holy Spirit enliven us.
“As I was leaving for work one morning, I opened the door to the apartment and found a frightened, disorientated blackbird flying in the stairwell between the second and third floors. As it flew about in its search for freedom, the small bird kept hitting itself on the walls and ceiling. I opened the hallway door to the next floor where there was an open window for the scared creature to fly out. I tried to shoo the bird towards the window, but it kept going back to the small stairwell space. As I hurried down the steps, I hoped that the panicky bird would find its way out. But that evening when I returned hone, I sadly found an exhausted bird lying there dead. Later, as I reflected on my day, I thought about the bird. It was such a vivid picture of disorientation and unfreedom. The bird had no sense of a larger world. It had fixed its sight on a small space, seeing it as the only reality, and had missed the freedom of the open window. It was too caught up in its own fear and confusion to see a way out.”
(The Star in my Heart – Discovering Inner Wisdom By Joyce Rupp copyright 2010 Surin Books)
This story applies to all of us. Rather than banging our heads against a wall because we see no way out of some difficulty, we can search for an open window or door and take the hand of somebody who is willing to ditect us to it.