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The Dean’s Weekly Message – 26th September 2021 Posted on Saturday 25 September 2021

Congratulations Bishop Tom

Now that many of the University students have returned there are a lot more people and a great deal more general activity around the Cathedral throughout the day and even into the night for some young revellers. It is good to see life returning gradually to this part of the city centre. I hope that any new students who may be joining us for Mass will be made to feel welcome amongst our congregations.

We are also experiencing a gradual increase in the number of general visitors coming to the Cathedral. The new welcome desk seems to work well within the entrance area of the Cathedral with the Welcomers and Guides now having an obvious engagement point for those entering the Cathedral. I am grateful to the many volunteers who give their time providing this valuable service of welcome and helping people to get the most out of their visit to our Cathedral. Having the online facility at the welcome area for providing tickets seems to have also resulted in an increase in the numbers of people visiting the Lutyens Crypt.

Throughout most of next week the Cathedral will be the venue for Liverpool Hope University Graduation Ceremonies. The original end of the summer term conferment of degrees had to be postponed and rescheduled until this time of the year. The University will be setting up on Monday with the graduation ceremonies taking place on three sessions each day on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The 5pm Masses on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday next week will be held in the Crypt Chapel.

Bishop Tom Williams will be conferred with the Honour of the Freedom of the City at a ceremony in the Town Hall this Thursday, 30th September. Part of the ancient privileges of being a Freeman of the city was that the freeman had the right to herd his cattle and sheep through the town centre. Bishop Tom certainly possesses a couple of Shepherd’s Crooks but as far as I know hasn’t any intentions of herding any sheep through the town centre. We have within our archive collections the ornate scroll and mahogany casket that was given to Archbishop Worlock many years ago when he received a similar honour. I guess the city would not be able to bestow such lavish gifts today, but I shall look forward to seeing what Bishop Tom receives.  I offer Congratulations to Bishop Tom on receiving this well earned honour for the many years that he has ministered in the City of Liverpool both as a Priest and Bishop.

Looking ahead to Sunday 3rd October. Archbishop Malcolm will preside at the 11am Mass. During this Mass he will be welcoming members of the Knights of St Columba who will be attending Mass and installing those undertaking senior office. Later at 3pm there will be the ‘Pause for Hope’ Service for all affected by cancer.

Canon Anthony O’Brien
Cathedral Dean