Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor celebrated a special Mass at The Sacred Heart Language College in Wealdstone on Wednesday 4th July 2007 to mark the centenary of the school.
In his homily the Cardinal congratulated everyone at the school on its centenary and on the continual success of the school. He said: 'In looking to the future, I hope that the spirit and values of the school continue.' Speaking to the pupils, he emphasised how it important it was for them to know the love of God in their lives, to form friendships with one another based on God's love and then to reach out and carry the love of the God to the world, especially to those less fortunate than themselves.
The Mass, which was attended by all of the pupils and staff of the school, as well as many parents and governors, featured a Mass setting commissioned for the occasion. The 'Missa Sacré Coeur', composed by Gregory Rose, was performed for the first time at the Mass by an orchestra and choir comprised of Sacred Heart staff and pupils.
Mr. Rose, who won a British Composer Award in 2006 for his first Mass, said that the experience of composing the Mass was 'fantastic, I felt elated after each session of working with the girls. The pupils were very involved in the process of composition which was wonderful.'
At the end of the Mass, Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor presented a Pro Ecclesia et Pontifice medal from Pope Benedict XVI to Headteacher Mrs Mary Waplington in recognition of her many years of service to schools in the Diocese of Westminster. A stunned Mrs Waplington, who retires at the end of the school year, expressed her gratitude to all at the school and particularly thanked all those who had been involved in the careful preparation of the centenary Mass.