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Advent talk at Buckfast Abbey
Tuesday 16th September 2014

Fr Ian Hellyer, the leader of the Buckfast Ordinariate group in southwest England, has recorded a televised Advent address which will be broadcast for the fourth Sunday of Advent on EWTN. The invitation to deliver the talk came from Dr Andrew Beards, academic director of the newly established School of the Annunciation, which was asked  to provide four priest speakers to give their Advent reflections for the series. The school, whose patrons include the senior Vatican Cardinal, George Pell and Bishop Mark O'Toole of Plymouth, was set up in response to the Church's call for a New Evangelisation and is based at the Benedicine monastery, Buckfast Abbey.

The invitation to Fr Hellyer is a sign of the deepening ties between the Ordinariate and the School of the Annunciation, many of whose staff were involved in the formation of the Ordinariate clergy long before the school itself was conceived. 

Fr Hellyer says: "It was during their visits to Buckfast Abbey to teach the Ordinariate Clergy in the Southwest that the seeds were being sown about the possibilities of some sort of school for the new evangelisation. So, ever since its genesis there has been support by the Ordinariate for this most encouraging development in the life of the Catholic Church in England".

His Advent reflection, given in the style of a mission address, was filmed at the Abbey and includes a section about the Ordinariate as well as about the School of the Annunciation. Fr Hellyer says: "it was a great privilege to speak in the great Abbey of St Mary, Buckfast, which in 2018 celebrates 1000 years of monastic life on the site, and also to have been invited by a new school staffed by extremely talented teachers, when I am a Catholic priest of only three years standing! The essential theme of my talk revolved around the Annunciation, which is the gospel of Advent 4, and also more generally about the theme of Advent hope. I ended the talk with a note about joy rooted in the truth of salvation".

Fr Hellyer is married to Margaret and the couple have ten children. He is a chaplain at Plymouth University.

Watch this space for details of where and when you can see the broadcast in December.


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The Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham
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