Myrna's prayer & testimonial programme in England - From 2004-09-30 to 2004-10-06
Myrna was accompanied by Monsignor
George Riachi, archbishop
of Tripoli, Lebanon.
Prayer & testimonial programme planned by Peter Hutley & Tony Hickey.
Canadian archivist: Gabriel Berberian.
In order to view/listen to the multi-media
Myrna and archbishop George Riachi arrive from Damascus
(Syria) and are welcomed at Heathrow airport by Peter Hutley, Denise Vallancey,
father Dr. Shafik Abouzayd, melkite catholic, a teacher at the University of
Oxford (The Oriental Institute), father Augustin Aoun from the Maronite Monk
Order as well as by his assistant. Once arrived at Wintershall, Ann Hutley welcomes us. Later
on, we visit the estate, the Holly Barn and the itinerary of the Stations of
the Cross. A beautiful Estate. Very friendly people.
Stations of the Cross. In the morning mist, we walk through
the picturesque lanes of the Wintershall estate, which are, at
times flat and at time steep and narrow, along the various Stations of the
Cross, in a beautiful surrounding. A tree several hundred years old with enormous intertwined
roots shelters the tomb of Christ. Father Alexander Sherbroke, from
St-Patrick’s parish in Soho, meditates the Stations of the Cross, in an
atmosphere of deep fervour. Around 40 persons accompany us throughout this lovely
itinerary. On our way back, everyone is invited to have breakfast at
The journalist Kay Newnham, accompanied by her assistant, arrive at Wintershall to interview Myrna. Kay belongs to the Church of England, but is, nevertheless, very moved by Myrna's testimony. Her article will be published in several newspapers, after preliminary approval. In the afternoon, discussions and viewing of some videos on Soufanieh (including the English version of Second Regard - CBC broadcasting, 1997), in the presence of fathers Michael OMalley and Alexander Sherbroke.
Rosary meditated by father Michael O'Malley.
Mass for Unity celebrated at the Holly Barn, an old barn
able to contain 600 people and since then, converted into a chapel.
Approximately 300 people are present. Mass is concelebrated by archbishop
Riachi and father John Pearson, Michael O’Malley, Michael Benjamin, Michael
Grinnell, in the presence of the Anglican rector of Bramley, reverend John
Bundock, reverend Rodney Annis from Enfield and Melkite deacon Richard Downer.
Father John Pearson is a former Anglican converted to
Catholicism. His sermon is very moving. He refers several times to his past
experience. During mass, an orchestra (mostly youth) accompanies Myrna
while she sings "Al Adra bil Soufanieh".
Very impressive testimony from Myrna. More than 150 persons
come to salute her at the end of the mass. Not one mentions the oil or the
fact that no oil had oozed from her hands. Everyone had concentrated on the
testimony. At the end of the mass, father John Pearson comes to salute
Myrna. He tells her that he had read an article on Soufanieh years earlier and
at the end of the reading, he thought to himself "Indeed this phenomenon is
real, it comes from God". Peter Hutley decides not to have any money collection, so
as to respect the gratuitousness of Soufanieh.
Testimony of Myrna at the Sacred Heart Church, Edge Hill, Wimbledon. Around
200 persons are present. Afterwards, archbishop Riachi
invites everyone to be blessed by the Icon of Our Lady of Soufanieh. Later on,
we are invited for tea at the home of Mrs. Eloïde Armeida..
Mass at the Maronite church of Our Lady of Sorrows,
17 Circencester Road in London. The church is packed with more than 400
persons. Archbishop Riachi and father Augustin Aoun concelebrate the mass. The
Lebanese Consul attends. Testimony of Myrna, archbishop Riachi invites everyone to
be blessed by the Icon of Our Lady of Soufanieh.
and archbishop Riachi participate to the BBC /
Radio 2 broadcasting program "Good morning Sunday", animated by the well-known
commentator Don McClean, with an audience of 2.5 million listeners. Don
McClean decides to link the Soufanieh website onto the BBC website and onto
his own. Many people phone Don afterwards to inquire further about
the Soufanieh phenomenon.
Back at Wintershall for the Youth festival (nearly 400 people). Bishop Keiran Conry expresses some concern regarding Myrna's testimony. The latter prefers to abstain. Very moving farewell to Ann, Peter, Yvonne, Caroline, Meredith and Susan. Father Shafiq Abouzayd has placed at our disposal a limousine, which had belonged previously to Her Majesty the Queen.
We arrive just before the end of the mass, which is concelebrated by archbishop Riachi and father Shafik Abouzayd, at St Barnaby's church, in London. Myrna gives her testimony in Arabic only in the presence of more than 200 persons.
Thereafter, we leave for Bath where we arrive just in time
to attend mass at St John the Evangelist. Archbishop Riachi and father Tom
Gunning concelebrate it, followed by a question and answer period. Very moving sermon of father Tom Gunning. Testimony of Myrna. Around 100 persons present.
We attend mass at Downside Benedictine Abbey. 14 monks
concelebrate it. There we meet Brigitte Waddams who is at the origin of this
whole visit, as well as her husband who is the British ambassador to
Kazakhstan. Breakfast meeting at Denise with the Benedictine monk
Very moving farewell to Denise. We head for Manchester, by train.
We are welcomed there by Tony Hickey, a Scripture Teacher.
He then takes us to Katherine House (FCJ). Thereafter, we have dinner with him in a pleasant Italian
Tony Hickey takes us to see the Manchester United football stadium. We then go to
visit the first Catholic Church (St Mary, The Hidden Gem) built in England,
after the Reformation. Lunch in Chinatown, then return to Katherine House.
Mass at Our Lady of Grace, in Prestwich, Manchester.
Before the mass, recitation of the Rosary, meditated by Tony Hickey, inspired
by the messages of Soufanieh. Archbishop Riachi, fathers John Delaney (Franciscan
capuchin) and the Irish priest father Martin Hough concelebrate the mass. Very
touching homily in which father Hough compares the previous situation of the
Irish Catholics to the one of the Christians in the East. He refers often to
Myrna. Tony plays the mandolin. Testimony of Myrna. Beforehand, archbishop Riachi
introduces the Soufanieh phenomenon to the audience. The church is full.
Approximately 250 persons present.
Morning mass celebrated by archbishop Riachi
in the chapel of Katherine House. Tony Hickey and Sister Teresa White are also
present. Archbishop Riachi blesses the picture of Our Lady of Soufanieh, which
had been offered to Tony by Myrna. The latter also gives him some cotton
soaked with oil from the icon of Soufanieh. We bid farewell to Tony Hickey and Sister Teresa. Return to
London by train. There father Shafiq Abouzayd welcomes us. Lunch with
In the evening, we depart for the airport. Father Shafiq, Ann and her
daughter Henrietta as well as Denise Vallancey come to bid us farewell.
|MULTI-MEDIA - TESTIMONIALS|
|Video||Audio||Monsignor George Riachi|
|Video||Audio||Father Michael Glothier|
|Video||Audio||Father John Delaney|
|Video||Audio||Father Martin Hough|
The sign of the oil that usually accompanies Myrna's testimonials did not appear during these prayer and testimonial meetings.