THE PAPAL VISIT
ST. NINIAN'S DAY, SEPTEMBER 16TH 2010
The arrival of the Holy Father in Scotland, ON
THE FEAST OF SAINT NINIAN, was a special joy for our parish,
as for all the parishes in Scotland dedicated to Saint Ninian.
The Queen welcomes the pope
to Holyrood Palace, Edinburgh, at the beginning of his State Visit to
A Special Invitation for our
The Bishops of Scotland made a special invitation to the children of all
Primary Schools called Saint Ninian's, of which ours is most happily one!
Consequently, special preparation was made, and great excitement generated
in our school as the children looked forward to welcoming the Pope.
On the Great Day, they set off early in the morning (7.00 a.m.) to travel
to Edinburgh to welcome the Holy Father to our country, and to take part
in the wonderful Saint Ninian's Day parade
along Edinburgh's high street, Princes Street, along with hundreds
of other children from primary schools called Saint Ninian's from other
Scottish towns, including Dumfries, Motherwell, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
beautiful banner had been prepared for the parade by Mrs June Ross, the
wife of our former MP Ernie Ross, representing all the nationalities who
attend Saint Ninian's, which were incorporated into a Celtic cross made
up of colours of all the national flags. One of the school's Janitors
carried the banner, and it was a proud moment for him too.
Above: The Banner is blessed by Canon
The Children receive their Papal tartan scarves and set off for the Parade
children were thrilled to see the Pope and to receive his blessing, as
he passed along Princes Street in his famous Pope Mobile. It was a wonderful
day for them, and amazing for us who are older to see the energy and enthusiasm
the little ones maintained on what must have been a long and tiring day
for them. Clearly, "they that wait upon the Lord renew their strength!"
Left: crowds line
Princes Street in Edinburgh
Off to Glasgow!
After his visit to Edinburgh, the Holy Father travelled to Glasgow to
celebrate Mass in Bellahouston Park, as 25 years ago his predecessor John
Paul II had done before him. The
media had stirred up an air of doubt about whether Pope Benedict would
be welcomed as Pope John Paul had been, or whether the Catholics in Scotland
had grown somewhat indifferent to the idea of a visit from their Pope.
It became clear from the outset, however, that such doubts and cynicism
were completely misplaced.
All along the route into Glasgow people gathered in their
hundreds to welcome the Holy Father, and in Bellahouston Park
itself 80,000 pilgrims waited - many of them for long hours -
to welcome with great joy and deep affection the spiritual head of the
Church, to share in the sacrifice of Holy Mass with him, and to receive
his Papal blessing for themselves and their children. (Many babies were
blessed along the route and in the Park itself, as the Pope Mobile slowed
to a standstill and mothers held up their children for a blessing!)
Parish priest Canon McBride, and a group of around 30 adults from our
parish made the pilgrimage to Ballahouston Park. It was a great experience
for them all, and we await with anticipation their personal stories of
the day, which will appear on this page as soon as we have them... to
Left: The Pope on the sanctuary
during Mass at Bellahouston Park.
The following was received from Kate
"It was a magical day, culminating when the Holy FAther passed within
15 yards of where we were standing. The Pope looked so serene in his Popemobile.
It is a day I sahll never forget. A big Thank you to Canon McBride for
his magnanimous gesture in sending the St Ninians parishioners for free,
what a gift!" - Thanks Kate!
MORE STORIES MOST WELCOME
and the theme of the visit
The theme for Pope Benedict XVI’s 2010 visit to the UK was Cor
ad cor loquitor – Heart speaks unto
heart. Cardinal John Henry Newman chose the words as the motto
to go on his coat of arms. Heart speaks unto heart was a fitting choice
for this papal visit as, on the final day of his Apostolic Journey, the
Holy Father beatified Cardinal Newman, who is now the Blessed John Henry
Newman. The Pope encouraged us, at every public engagement, to learn more
about the life of this holy, dedicated servant of God, and to try to follow
his example. We are also encouraged to seek his intercession in our greatest
need.. miracles have already been claimed and approved by the
Church through his prayers.
You can read more about him by clicking the link, NEWMAN
For the future..
Parish prayer groups may continue to reflect on the Papal encyclical Caritas
in Veritate, for which guidance materials for Holy Hours, Eucharistic
Devotions and a Novena to be used personally or publicly are available
at the official Bishops of Scotland website: www.beingcatholic.org/