Swallows and Wales and Missa Cantata

I got this from a reader.   I love the image and had to share it.

Father Jason Jones, Rector of the National Shrine of Wales, Our Lady of the Taper, celebrated a Missa Cantata on the Feast of the Most Precious Blood in the Priory Chapel within the Monastery on Caldey Island off the coast of Wales.

Swallows swooped over Fr Jones’s head, diving through the clouds of incense – a wonderful occasion.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Pseudomodo says:

    This reminds me of the time I pent in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia. Mass at the Cathedral was always associated with a flock of birds that flew down the nave making a turn at the transept, a 180 deg turn back towards and down over the altar, another 180, a second pass over the altar before turning back up the nave for another pass.

    This went on contiuously during the masses I attended.

    The first time I saw a spectacle like this was in Monterrey, Mexico at another cathedral. White doves!

    I always wondered why the priest covered the chalice… now I know.

  2. John Miller says:

    Was Mozart’s Spatenmesse sung? It would be fitting!

  3. John Miller says:

    Oops i meant \”Spatzenmesse.\” It would be the Spade Mass otherwise. I feel like ICEL today!

  4. Kradcliffe says:

    Swallows make me nervous… I’ve had them nesting on my porch on a couple of occasions and they were always flying in my face. Apparently, it is illegal to disturb their nests or nest-building, but I always do. I have to. I feel about swallows the way Father Z feels about squirrels.

  5. Maureen says:

    Even the sparrows find a home under the eaves of the Temple….

  6. Tom says:

    One is confident that Fr Jones used a Pall and so the Sacred Species were not liable to attack from the swallows.

  7. Jason C. Petty says:

    EXACTLY, Tom. I realized the functional aspect of the pall once I was at Mass in the parish church in Santo Domingo de Silos with pigeons fluttering overhead.

  8. Phil (NL) says:

    I’m curious now: which methods would be acceptable (and practical) to get rid of bird infestations in a church? Cause let’s be honest: while it sometimes may make for a nice picture, those birds do leave things behind. The Sacred Speices may be protected, the priest and parishioners are not.

    Yet one cannot really start shooting them inside the church – if only due to the collateral damage. So how to get rid of them?

  9. Simon Platt says:


  10. Simon Platt says:

    .. or Hobbies

  11. Maureen says:

    Bait and nets? (The snare of the fowler….) :)

Comments are closed.