Sunday, June 13, 2010

Fifty Years of Faithful Priestly Service

On the concluding day of the Year for Priests, the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart, Father Kevin St Aubyn celebrated his Golden Jubilee of ordination. He remarked that in God's Providence his 25th, 40th and 50th anniversaries have all been on the feast of the Sacred Heart.

Father St Aubyn was a curate at my home parish of St Anselm's Tooting Bec. I remember him very well, when I was an impressionable young server, as a priest who was full of zeal and laughter. In the days when one priest would preach at all Masses, I remember him pacing up and down the sacristy rehearsing his homily while I was waiting in the wings as a boat bearer in preparation for the Gospel.

He was also Scout Leader and took us on camps with the parish Scout Troop. I remember him celebrating Mass - worthily and with dignity - in the huge camp tent.

He also has another claim to fame: he baptised my brother Stephen who is now parish priest at Good Shepherd Church, New Addington. Stephen was ordained some five years before me.

Father St Aubyn has been parish priest of Our Lady Immaculate at Whitstable for 31 years - and shows no sign of tiring!

During the celebration afterwards he was presented with a papal blessing:

and a Knights of St Columba stole.

I wish him every blessing and thank the Lord for Father Kevin's part in my vocation story.

UPDATE: had to laugh when I saw a LinkWithin link to my post on Raquel Welch and the pill. Father St Aubyn is a staunch defender of Humanae Vitae!


  1. Congratulations to Fr. Kevin, and many more years to him.

  2. Yes Father, in these turbulent times we should recognize and thank all faithful priests who have “borne the day and the heat ” for so many years. Ad multos annos to Fr. St Aubyn!

    Your story of him pacing the sacristy practicing his sermon reminded me of another ‘pacing’ image. Many years ago, in a parish not a hundred miles from you, the PP was an old Irish priest. “Fr. Paddy” was a stickler for punctuality and not ‘foostering around’ at the altar. While he never seemed to rush Mass, he always completed it with dispatch and an economy of movement.

    At that time the other priests in the parish would assist with distribution of Holy Communion at all the Sunday Masses. On one occasion we had a visiting priest celebrating one of the Masses and he was rather slow. Fr. Paddy was pacing the Sacristy and whenever there was a ‘break in the action’ (as the celebrant hunted for the right place in the Missal, presumably…) he would poke his head out the door muttering under his breath: “Get on with it!”

    Fr. Paddy too, lived to see his golden jubilee of ordination. May he rest in peace.


Please avoid being 'anonymous' if at all possible.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...