Tuesday, 9 September 2008
I have been tagged for MEME!
The Epiphany Artist has asked me 'where were you and what were you doing at...? six different times. As I am particularly proud of my answer to No. 6, I shall gladly reply to all!
1. JFK's Assassination 11/22/1963
Well, it would be nice to say that I had not yet been born, but that would be untrue! I was 10 years old, and in those days I had to be in bed with my light out at 8.00 pm. So I guess I was in bed in my home in Leeds, Yorkshire - and that I was asleep.
2. England vs Germany World Cup Semi-Final 4/7/1990
I was living in Belfast (Northern Ireland) and watched the match on TV. I think I watched it at home but cannot remember if anyone else was watching it with me.
3. Margaret Thatcher's Resignation 11/22/1990
I was teaching at Latymer Upper School in London and let my economics students watch it all happening on TV.
4. Princess Diana's Death 8/31/2005
I was in bed at the time, but was shocked to hear about it on the 8.00 am news on the radio. I remember changing the hymns I had selected for the 10.00 am Solemn Mass at St Thomas Aquinas Church, Ham. The mood was one of great sadness.
5. Attack on Twin Towers 9/11/2001
Again, I was teaching economics at Latymer Upper School - and my students said something awful had happened in New York and could they watch it on TV. I said 'no', we will get on with our economics and you can watch it when you get home. Little did I know that my eldest nephew (Simon) was only 300 metres away from one of the towers. He had travelled down from Boston that morning on a business trip. Fortunately he was not physically injured - though he was emotionally very shaken up.
6. Election of Cardinal Ratzinger to the Papacy 4/19/2005
Oh joy! I was in Westminster Cathedral in London. I had arrived at the Cathedral in time to act as deacon at the 5.30 pm Solemn Mass - as I do most Tuesdays. The Cathedral bells were ringing because we knew we had a new Pope - but we did not yet know who he was! Bishop George Stack (Auxiliary Bishop) was called in at short notice to celebrate, and in the sacristy he said 'what will I say at the Eucharistic Prayer, because once more we have a Pope, but we do not know his name!'? During the first reading from the Acts of the Apostles I was handed a piece of paper to hand to the bishop. He opened it, but said nothing. When I asked him for a blessing before reading the Gospel I also said 'who is it?' and he said 'not telling!'. During the Homily he told the whole congregation that it was Cardinal Ratzinger, but we didn't learn the name 'Benedict' until the Eucharistic Prayer. It was all most dramatic and exiting. We processed out to 'March Pontificale' by Widor and BBC TV were waiting at the West Door to interview, well not me, but Bishop Stack!
PS The photo shows myself with Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor (Archbishop of Westminster) - the Cardinal was obviously in Rome attending the conclave at the time of Pope Benedict's Election.