Rt Rev John Sherrington, newly installed auxiliary bishop of Westminster, conferred Confirmations in the Traditional Rite on 31 candidates at a ceremony organised by the Latin Mass Society (LMS) at St James's, Spanish Place in central London on Saturday 12th November 2011.
Originally, Bishop Alan Hopes of Westminster was intending to confer the Sacrament but had to withdraw at the very last moment owing to ill health. Bishop Sherrington stepped into the breach at less than 24 hours notice to ensure a very successful and happy occasion went ahead as scheduled. He was assisted by Fr Andrew Southwell, the LMS National Chaplain, Fr Tim Finigan and the rector of St James's, Fr Christopher Colven.
After celebrating Pontifical Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament the bishop joined candidates and their families and friends in the Parish Social Centre for a buffet lunch where he also cut one of two celebratory cakes.
LMS General Manager Mike Lord said 'We were delighted to have the chance to meet Bishop Sherrington for the first time since his installation and grateful that he was able to help us out at such short notice. It was a joyful occasion for all involved. I understand this was the first time that the bishop had administered Confirmations in the Traditional Rite, but it was a seamless performance, drawing complimentary remarks from the clergy who assisted him, all of whom are experienced hands in the Extraordinary Form. We were very happy that Bishop Sherrington spent time chatting to the candidates and their families afterwards, even delaying his departure for another appointment to ensure that had the opportunity of speaking to everyone. Westminster archdiocese is fortunate to have acquired an auxiliary so pastorally attuned to the needs of ordinary Catholics, whatever form of the liturgy they are attached to.'