Cardinal dedicates altar, blesses artwork and cave at church in West London


Cardinal Vincent and Fr. Michael during the blessing

Source: Diocese of Westminster

Cardinal Vincent celebrated mass at Our Lady of Lourdes and St Vincent de Paul Church, Harrow Road last Sunday. Mass was for the dedication of the altar and the blessing of the grotto of Lourdes. The Cardinal also blessed the newly commissioned altarpiece and mosaic of St Vincent de Paul outside with Fr Michae; the church. Guillem Ramos-Poqui, the iconic artist of the altarpiece and Sophie D’Souza, the artist of the mosaic of St Vincent de Paul, were both present at the celebration. The altarpiece was sculpted by Stephen Foster.

The parish recently completed the first phase of an ambitious four-phase improvement program for the church building and grounds. The first phase included rendering the exterior of the church and landscaping the church yard. New portals and railings have been installed, as well as planters, trees, a seating area and a cave with a statue of Our Lady of Lourdes.

The statue of Our Lady of Lourdes was donated by Herbert House in Liverpool, a community of retired missionaries from St Joseph’s Missionary Society. The statue previously stood in a cave that was built to mark the company’s centenary in 1966. When the decision was made to sell the land that included the cave, the statue needed a new home. The weather-worn statue was fully restored before taking its place in the courtyard garden of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Vincent de Paul, Harrow Road.

Father Michael Jarmulowicz, pastor of Harrow Road, said: “It is always a great pleasure and a great honor when the bishop visits one of his parishes. Therefore, we were delighted to welcome Cardinal Vincent to our parish to consecrate the altar. Initially this visit was scheduled for 2020, but Covid forced us to postpone.

“The following year, we were able to continue the redevelopment of the front yard with the construction of the cave, and the installation of the newly commissioned mosaic of St Vincent de Paul, which he also blessed. The parishioners were delighted to meet him afterwards. as we celebrated with a roast pork and a selection of national dishes brought by parishioners. “

Key words: Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, Fr. Michael Jarmulowicz, Guillem Ramos-Poqui, Sophie D’Souza, Stephen Foster, Church of Our Lady of Lourdes and St Vincent de Paul, Harrow Road

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