Saint James



The Parish of

St. Peter,

Bushey Heath

July 2019


From the vicar


At no time in our devotions, during Lent or at any other time of the year, are we closer to the Cross than when we approach the altar. The cross or crucifix may stir our thoughts and spirits to remembrance and adoration, but it is the altar in our midst which brings the events of God’s salvation into our lives.


The altar of the living God is treated by Christians with the utmost respect. It is a fact so obvious that it hardly needs stating. But it is not the repose of an idol, ‘the work of men’s hands’ or even the work of their minds. This is where heaven and earth meet and the wonderful truth of God’s love and mercy is apprehended; here we behold his majesty. This is true regardless of the material the altar is made from or the form it takes.


Altars come in a vast array of shapes and sizes, some of wood, some of stone. Properly the stone which forms the top of the altar is incised with five crosses, one in the centre and one in each corner to represent to five wounds of Christ. An altar made of wood or the stone set within a wooden altar are marked similarly. All altars or altar stones should be consecrated by a bishop, such is their importance.


The significance of an altar is not always understood partly because it has a practical function in the eucharistic celebration. Even so the altar is a sacred object which represents the one who is both priest and victim; Christ who is the lamb of God and our great high priest who ever lives to intercede for us. For this reason the altar is properly dressed with undercloths and a fair linen and then usually adorned with a frontal and superfrontal according to the season. On or above the altar will be found a cross or crucifix and an appropriate number of candles.


Our attitude towards an altar shows a great deal about us. When moving in front of an altar it is correct to reverence it and during the liturgy it may be kissed and incensed. There is an exclusivity about an altar which must never be used as a repository for ecclesiastical detritus or have items placed upon it which are not to be immediately blessed or used forthwith in the mass.


An altar represents the meeting between heaven and earth, a sign of God’s graciousness towards his people as it is shown definitively in Jesus.

‘Never did a cross redeem nature from the curse: never was a Lamb set upon the altar that could take away the sins of the world, until God took on him the nature of a servant.’ (St. Proclus of Constantinople, 5thCentury). This is awesome; approach with care.


Patronal Festival

Sunday 30thJune

8.00am Said Mass (Book of Common Prayer)                  9.30am Parish Mass (Modern Rite)


Richborough Mass

Saturday 10thAugust


Blessing of Pilgrims, 10.30am at St. Peter’s, Bushey Heath

Mass, 12 noon at St. Albans Cathedral

Followed by a picnic and bible study in the Bishop’s garden.

Bring your own food. Drinks provided.



Pray that the Church may receive a renewed vision for mission and service.


From the diary


Wednesday    3rdJuly, 10.00am                Morning Prayer (Officiant: Sr. Diana)

Sunday          7th July,   8.00am               no service

                                     9.30am                Parish Mass (Celebrant: Fr. Roger Stokes)

Wednesday 10th July, 10.00am               Morning Prayer (Officiant: Sr. Diana)

Sunday        14thJuly,   8.00am                no service

                                    9.30am                 Parish Mass (Celebrant: Fr. Robert Van de Weyer)

                                  11.15am                 Family Service

Wednesday 17thJuly, 10.00am                 Mass

Monday      22ndJuly, 10.00am                Mass (St. Mary Magdalene)

Wednesday 24thJuly, 10.00am               no service

Thursday    25thJuly, 10.00am                Mass (St. James, Apostle)

Tuesday       6thAugust, 7.00pm              Mass (Transfiguration of Our Lord)

Wednesday  7thAugust, 10.00am            Mothers’ Union Corporate Communion

Saturday    10thAugust, 12 noon             Richborough Family Mass


The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Sunday 18thAugust, 9.30am

Parish Mass


Friday 23rdAugust, 7.00pm                   Mass (St. Bartholomew, Apostle)


From the Registers


4thJune             Geoffrey Thompson (aged 93 years)

10thJune           Irene Taylor-Gooby (aged 97 years)


The Feast of the Triumph of the Holy Cross


Vigil Mass for the Feast of Title

Friday 13thSeptember, 7.00pm at Holy Cross, Marsh Farm.

Preacher: Father Andrew Burton SSC


‘Lift High the Cross’

TheRichborough Family Festival

Festal Mass on Saturday 14thSeptember, 12 noon at Rochester Cathedral.


Quiet Day at Ascot Priory

Saturday 28thSeptember 2019

‘Aspects of the Beatitudes’

Addresses by Father Andrew Burton

The cost will be £20 per person. Please book with Fr. Andrew.


Contact details:

Vicar: Fr. Andrew Burton SSC, a priest of the Society. (020 8950 1424). Usual day off Monday.

Churchwarden: Mrs. Anne Swerling (020 8950 8923).