Cardinal celebrates Ash Wednesday Mass at Canary Wharf
posted on 22 February 2007
Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor has celebrated a special Ash Wednesday Mass for the Catholic community in London’s Canary Wharf. The Cardinal was the main celebrant at the Mass on 21st February 2007 which was attended by more than 500 people who work at the heart of one of London’s main business and banking districts.
In his homily, Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor emphasised the importance of discipline in the life of a Christian, particularly during the period of Lent which began on Ash Wednesday. The Cardinal said: “The discipline we have in Lent allows us to think clearly, about God and about ourselves, without distraction.” He also told the congregation that these are good times to be a Christian, and that it is as important as ever for people to show Christ to others in their daily lives.
Speaking after the Mass, the Cardinal said: “This was the first time I have visited Canary Wharf to say Mass, and I was delighted to see so many people who had come to receive ashes. In a place that is such a centre of activity, it is wonderful that people have taken time out of their working day to give thanks to God and prepare themselves for the Lenten season ahead.”
The Mass took place in the unique setting of the HSBC Group building in Canary Wharf. It was organised by the Canary Wharf Catholic Community (CWCC), a community that has grown up around the weekly celebration of Mass in the Canary Wharf Inter-faith Prayer Room. The CWCC is under the leadership of Fr Peter Harris, who is Parish Priest of St Edmund, Millwall, the parish of which Canary Wharf is a part. A small group of volunteers handle the day to day organisation of the group, with support from Fr Peter.