Journey to the place of the Strong Shield

Sunday’s are, inter alia, good days for adventures.

Having left Gotham and the nearby Flatiron, I went in search of the Strong Shield.

I caught a redeye…Help. Fr. Z in England!

For some countryside.

A view from the train form King’s Cross Station to Letchworth.

This was Fr. Adrian Fortescu’s little church in Letchworth.

It is now the parish hall.

A tiny bit of the baldachino of the church survives in the Lady Chapel in the main church, itself built in 1962.

A window from the old church.

Some of you will enjoy some Latin.

As I said, the old church is now a hall for the parish.  It has just been tidied up with some work.   A false ceiling was recently taken out and displays on the life of Fr. Fortescu put up.

The parish priest was very kind.  He let us see Fr. Fortescu’s own chalice, which remained in the parish.

After lunch at a nearby carvery, back to town we went.

We caught Vespers at Brompton Oratory with Benediction.

Harrod’s is all lit up for you know what.

A momentary stop at my friend’s club for a rest of the feet and some tea.

Then to supper.  Steak, bacon and mushroom pie, with mashed potatoes.

All in all a good day.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    Thank you for this post father! I had to view it in Chrome (for Mac) because the images were not displaying in Safari – neither in Google Reader nor on your blog site itself.

    A few images did come out – Fr Fortescu’s chalice case, the Oratory and the tea set. The rest are just question marks, I’m afraid.

  2. Jack Hughes says:

    I didn’t realise that you were in blighty Father, admitidly I’ve been out of the loop for the best part of the past month (on retreat with Nazareth Priest in Wisconsin) but I’m sure that Fr would’ve told me if you had flow to these hallowed Isles

  3. rhetoric57 says:

    Worked fine for me in Safari ! If you are in London, perchance a meeting later this week?

  4. We may have to have a blognic, if some people are interested.

  5. pelerin says:

    ‘We may have to have a blognic’ says Fr Z. Welcome to Britain Father – and yes please that would be great!

  6. irishgirl says:

    Wow, I didn’t know you were over in England, Father Z!
    Will you be able to meet up with ‘His Hermeneuticalness’, by any chance?
    Ah, the London Oratory-one of the places I absolutely loved on my visits to England! And Harrods’ too-the food courts and the book department were places to die for!

  7. pelerin says:

    I have been reading up about Fr Fortescue and was intrigued to find that the Priest/archivist for Westminster has been researching his letters and came up with the following: describing a nun Fr Fortescue wrote ‘she would wear vestments like a shot if I let her.’ The letter was written in 1902! Plus ca change ….

  8. MargaretC says:

    Have a wonderful time, Father. I’m planning a trip to England, myself, but it may take me two years to save the money.

  9. ghp95134 says:

    Aha!!! Eureka! That is the tea service of the East Indian United Service Club!! Now known as the East India, Devonshire, Sports and Public Schools’ Club.

    Club crest:
    Badge of the East India Club, London
    The Club’s badge has been called ‘a lion looking for a place to hang up his hat’. Actually it is the badge of the Honourable East India Company (HEIC), adopted at the Club’s establishment as the East India United Service Club in 1894. The East India United Service Club was intended to provide a London home exclusively for members of the HEIC’s military, naval and various civil services – planters merchants and other ‘boxwallahs’ were not to be admitted. Even after the Great Mutiny of 1857 resulted in the end of the Company’s rule and the transfer of the Indian army and civil service to the Crown, the member of the Club remained loyal to their origins. So much so that in 1870 the AGM voted firmly to retain the HEIC’s badge as that of the Club – and so it has remained throughout our subsequent amalgamations with the Sports, Devonshire and Public School Clubs. It is probable that the Club is the only institution that still uses the name and insignia that harks back to a founding connection with the HEIC.

    – ROSNER, R., 2005, East & West, December, P.3
    –Guy Power

  10. sawdustmick says:

    Dear Father, You never waved from the train window as you went through Stevenage !!!
    Keep us up to date on plans for a blognic ! I will try and make it.

  11. relee54 says:

    A couple pints of Bellvue Kriek, and it would have been a perfect day, Father Z!

  12. Susan the Short says:

    Any chance you might offer a recipe for that pie?

  13. cblanch says:


  14. Supertradmum says:

    Wonderful photos. I was married at the Brompton Oratory, and lived in West Kensington. You were in my old stomping grounds. I would love the pie recipe.

  15. Supertradmum says:

    Father Z,

    How long are you in London, and GB?

  16. Fr Tim Edgar says:

    Father Z is in London. 5 Anglican Bishops submit to Rome. Not a coincidence, surely? Come on Father, spill the beans!

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