Fr Abbot and Dom Michael attended the four hour Mass of Dedication of the Abbey Church of Saint Michel de Kergonan in Brittany. Farnborough and Kergonan have many historic links as well as modern bonds of friendship. Five years ago the Abbey Church of the nuns burnt to the ground and had to be completely rebuilt. The liturgy was a model of what one might call the new Liturgical Movement. It was utterly monastic. Four hours of chant, of lavish ceremonies, processions and profound symbolism. The bishop was clearly at one with all that was happening, and carefully drew on the richness of symbolic fare in his homily.
It was interesting to see that some ceremonies absent from the modern rites were included. For example, the Bishop traced Greek and Latin alphabet in sand (Kergonan is by the sea!) on the pavement before the sanctuary.
There were abbots galore and nuns from everywhere! Monks and nuns alternated the chant. Our abbot was pleased to see so many old friends from the Congregation of Solesmes, as well as abbots of other orders and Benedictine congregations. We are looking forward to seeing the DVD which was filmed on the day. We know that some of our friends will be amused to see the concelebrants’ vestments , prepared for some of the abbots. Le Barroux – Farnborough – Fontgombault. Les Francais!