The marriage of Joseph and Mary

Super Flumina
Babylonis

under the patronage of St Joseph and St Dominic

By the rivers of Babylon there we sat and wept, remembering Zion;
on the poplars that grew there we hung up our harps. . . Ps 136

St Dominic

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11th September 2001

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BALLADE OF ILLEGAL ORNAMENTS

'… the controversy was ended by His Lordship, who wrote to the Incumbent ordering him to remove from the Church all Illegal Ornaments at once, and especially a Female Figure with a Child.'

  When the Eternal deigned to look  
  On us poor folk to make us free  
  He chose a Maiden whom He took  
  From Nazareth in Galilee;  
  Since when the islands of the Sea,  
  The Field, the City, and the Wild,  
  Proclaim aloud triumphantly  
  A Female Figure with a Child.  
     
  These mysteries profoundly shook  
  The Reverend Doctor Leigh D.D.,  
  Who therefore stuck into a Nook,  
  (Or Niche) of his Incumbency,  
  A figure filled with majesty  
  To represent the Undefiled,  
  The Universal Mother—She—  
  A Female Figure with a Child.  
     
  His bishop who had read a book  
  That proved as plain as plain could be  
  That all the mutts had been mistook  
  Who talked about a Trinity,  
  Wrote at once to Doctor Leigh  
  In manner very far from mild,  
  And said, 'Remove them instantly!  
  A Female Figure with a Child'.  
     
 
Envoi        
 
  Prince Jesus in mine agony,  
  Permit me, broken and defiled,  
  Through glazed and blurring eyes to see,  
  A Female Figure with a Child.  
     
 
Hilaire Belloc