Author Archives: Mr Cumming


I was still a teenager when I first saw the Robbins/Wise film West Side Story, which was based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. It tells the story of teenagers Tony and Maria, who, despite having affiliations with rival street gangs, the American Jets and Puerto Rican Sharks, fall in love in 1950s New York City. A new version of their doomed love, directed this time by Steven Spielberg, will be released this December, marking the 60th anniversary of the 1961 film. The wondrous music is amazing and still has such a freshness about it. After their meeting, Tony rushes to Maria’s house and they sing “Tonight, tonight” with its concluding line, “When you dream – dream of me, tonight.” There is nothing new under the sun and sacred authors got there first! In the Book of Joel (2:28) we read, “Your old men shall dream dreams, and your young men shall see visions.” There is a beautiful hymn in the Office of Compline entitled “Te lucis ante terminum” (Before the fading of the light) The second verse begins, “Te corda nostra somnient” which translates as “May our hearts dream of you (Lord God).”

In our painting we see the silence of a Carthusian monk. Like Saint Joseph, they spend most of their life in silence. Read the Bible. Not once will you find a word spoken by Joseph. He is silent and strong. The monks may be silent but their love of Christ and the Church protects and provides for us as we rush through our busy and noisy lives. Their silence is their eloquence. Their hiddenness is a powerhouse of prayer. Our painting is entitled, ”Seated Carthusian Holding an Open Book” and was painted by the Frenchman and member of l’Académie Royale de Peinture et de Sculpture,. This was in 1711…..309 years ago! But here’s the thing. If it had been painted 937 years ago when St Bruno founded the order, or indeed yesterday, it would have looked exactly the same. It is said that the Carthusians never had to reform because they had never ever deformed. The habit that St Bruno wore is the exact habit the present-day Carthusian wears….whether he is the Prior or the newly professed Brother. No sign of high office or dignity other than the simple habit. The painting looks like a sepia photograph. You see only the habit, the book and the hands. The personality and character are given to God who uses the hands of the monk to study, to pray, to work and to use his isolation for the greater glory of God. As he reads and prays the Scriptures, I wonder what his dreams are? I wonder what our dreams will be for the coming year?

Monsignor Monaghan

Catholic Education Week

Many thanks to staff and pupils who represented our school in their local parishes as part of Catholic Education week. Pupils provided the music as well as being involved in celebrating the mass by reading,   Although this week was celebrated already in February, this second week signifies when Catholic Education week will now take place. Furthermore, it brings to an end the celebrations of the centenary of the 1918 Education Act.  This Act saw Catholic schools transfer from Diocesan control to State governance.

Attending Saint Cadoc’s  Church where John Crilley, Mhairi Zing, Annabelle Nordmann, Nicola Martin, Paul  Docherty, Stephen Gallagher,  Maria Gallagher, Sophia Laurie, Francesca Crilley, Patrick Mackie, Grace Mackie and Sinead O’Hara.

Attending Saint Joseph’s Church where Thomas Leahy-Kelly, John Lynch, Nicola Martin and Rhona Mowat.

Attending Holy Name where Arianna Fraioli and family as well as the Sutherland Family from Our Lady of the Missions.