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The Dean’s Weekly Message – 23rd July 2023 Posted on Saturday 22 July 2023

Visiting Choir

Now that the round of Graduation Ceremonies have run their course we can look forward to a few quiet, event free weeks for the rest of July and early August. This Sunday we welcome a visiting choir who will sing at 11am Mass. They are Streatham Choral, an adult choir from South West London, who are on a summer singing tour in Liverpool this weekend.

On Tuesday we celebrate the Feast of St James, Apostle, Brother of St John, and jointly described as ‘Sons of Thunder’. I’m not sure whether this referred to the changeable moods of their father or that they were born during a storm. We have a funeral Mass at 12.15pm in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel next Thursday for Betty Welsh, who lived in Cathedral Walk.

I don’t often write about sport in the Record but we have two major international sporting events taking place in the North West this weekend. The Cricket at Old Trafford and the Golf at Royal Liverpool Course, Hoylake. The biggest challenge for the cricketers and golfers over the next two days events will not be their opponents but the weather conditions. The American Evangelist Billy Graham, who was a keen golfer used to compare the Christian life to a round of golf. One of his famous phrases was ‘The only time that my prayers are never answered are on the golf course’. These are a few of the analogies that he made.

Along the course of life everyone will get into a bunker now and then, even when all seems to be going along nicely. We all mess up at times and have to get down in the sand and calmly and humbly take advice as to how to play out of the mess. In life as in golf we have to ‘play it as it lies’ – we can’t change our circumstances and we need at times to accept what the Lord sends us. Another golfing phrase is ‘there are no gimme’s’ i.e. there are no free shots given, every choice and decision we make carries consequences. Also that it is not just the big shots that count – they are all important.

The few comments that I liked the most being a sometime poor golfer were:-  ‘Even if everything is going wrong you can still enjoy the scenery’ – we can still be in awe of God’s creation. That anger doesn’t help and treating people nicely is part of the game. We can all be tempted to make our score card better than it actually was but the game is about honesty and the Lord will know!

Canon Anthony O’Brien
Cathedral Dean