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Glen Mills, Pennsylvania
August 2, 2005
From journal It's the tower bridge, all you tourists!
November 13, 2002
We actually have attended Mass here many times but after attending Mass on Wednesday morning I decided to actually look at the Cathedral as if I were a tourist instead of just a communicant. We attended morning Mass in Our Ladies Chapel and frankly it was hard for me to concentrate on the Mass with so much going on on the ceiling and walls. It’s phenomenal, all gold and glitter, but distracting to say the least.
On the opposite side of the Cathedral be sure to look for the grave of Saint Robert Southworth. He was a Catholic priest who was drawn and quartered for saying Mass during the reign of Elizabeth I. He was the last secular priest to suffer this fate. His parish was close to this site so in 1930 his remains were brought back here so that he could again be among his people.
Back on the side near the Lady Chapel is the St. Andrew Chapel. The gorgeous scenes on the upper walls are of 6 towns that are associated with St. Andrew. I took a photo of the one of Constantinople. There is also a thistle worked into the gate to the chapel since St. Andrew is the patron St. of Scotland. Right now there is an exhibit in the Chapel celebrating the Bicentenary of the birth of Cardinal Wiseman a former archbishop of Westminster.
The Cathedral has Stations of the Cross by sculptor Eric Gill which are quite famous and is also well know for their Choir, which has earned worldwide recognition. If you have the time take the life up into the bell tower. It offers spectaculars views from all sides. The Cathedral has a very nice gift shop and if you arrive between 10 and 4 you can catch a quick snack in the Cathedral Kitchen.
Be warned however that this is an area where you will be pan handled. It seems to make sense that if you are visiting a church you will want to help the poor. There is a very nice soup kitchen at the convent where we stay just around the corner so you can feel justified in sending them to St. Vincent if they seem to be hungry or just send them on their way firmly.
From journal London-Once is Never Enough