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Roman Catholic Diocese of East Anglia (RCDEA) Baker, Oswald Charles Rev (1915-2004) Downham Market
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"A Warning" "and an Amplification"

side 1: "A Warning / from / Peter Simple / of the Daily Telegraph / and an Amplification"
side 2: Article "Sign" by Peter Simple, reproduced from the Daily Telegraph, 16 March 1976
sides 3/4: "An amplification - from one of the faithful" by Margaret S Kenworthy-Browne

Unknown

Bishop Clark to Bp Grant: Diocese division; Downham Market; PP changeover

Suggest Canons Burditt and Frost and Frs Philpot and Wace for Commission on the division of the [Northampton] Diocese.
Downham Market is an issue on which we must stand - "whatever the personal holiness of Ossie (and God alone is the Judge here), he is corrupting a holy thing - and this is the hidden evil." Unwavering leadership is required. Confront Ossie with the obedience he owes, and, that the Pope has formally specified the circumstances in which the rite may be celebrated.
Tony Sketch should be given Downham market as his charge and say a publicised Mass there.
PPs (Aldeburgh, Wymondham, Felixstowe and Ipswich) make change-over on October 7th.

Clark, Alan Charles Rev DD (1919-2002)

Bishop Clark to Correspondent: Dress Code at Downham Market

Fr baker had issued detailed directives about what women could wear. The Bishop thought that a general directive might be more adequate - he had no idea of the lead up which horrifies him. "In many ways this miserable affair has only just begun" but your bishops are trying to find a solution compatible with Catholic faith - likely to be firm action.

Clark, Alan Charles Rev DD (1919-2002)

Bishop Clark to Editor, Catholic Herald: Downham Market article; Apostolicae Curea

Acknowledges that he had read the Downham Market article and advised others to read it. The holiness of Fr Baker is for God to judge but his ministry leaves a lot to be desired; have tried to contain this because of the hurt and scandal its disclosure would cause; this assumption of holiness hurts other priests in the area. "It is appalling that Downham Market has associated itself with the Abbe of Nantes."
Short discussion of Apostolicae Curae; leave off the offensive "final decision" from the front cover.
The proceedings of Oxford was kept completely confidential but the last sentence of the press release is a "humble and abiding confidence in what we are doing."

Clark, Alan Charles Rev DD (1919-2002)

Bishop Clark to Fr Baker: Reorganisation of parishes

A considerable reorganisation of parishes and pastoral responsibilities in the area of Dereham and Swaffham. Downham Market will become part of the Swaffham parish with Fr Peter Marsh as its first parish priest; it may be re-established as a parish in the future. Fr Baker must be living on a pittance now that RAF Marham has its own chaplain. Providing him with an overview of intentions which will not happen until arrangements have been made for Fr Baker.

Clark, Alan Charles Rev DD (1919-2002)

Bishop Grant to Downham Market Congregation

Compliments slip: Bishop Secretary: "Tony Sketch will arrange to deliver the enclosed - less the carbon - to all Downham Market parishioners when he distributes his invitations to the real Mass."
Page 1: letter to the congregation at Downham Market - explaining, now that the legal procedure is over, the sorrow he feels in acting against Fr Baker. Obedience to the Holy Father means accepting the changes away from the Tridentine Mass. Expects support for Fr Sketch. Notes of explanation included.
Page 2-3: Notes headed: "1. Your present position"; "2. The Missal of Pope Paul VI"; "3. The Bishop's dealings with Fr Baker"

Grant, Charles Alexander Rev LCL BA (1906-1989)

Bishop Grant to Fr Baker: Consequences of the Decree

Detailing the immediate consequences of the Decree sent on 20 November:

  1. not entitled to live in the Parish house - must be vacated without delay - contact the Bishop for support arrangements
  2. not entitled to use the Church - will not evict Fr Baker but will not tolerate him remaining
  3. not entitled to administer parochial funds - make arrangements to settle up
  4. not entitled to officiate at marriages - any married by you will be in an invalid marriage
  5. if celebrating mass in disobedience must make this clear to those attending and handle monies appropriately

Grant, Charles Alexander Rev LCL BA (1906-1989)

Bishop Lindsay to Bishop Clark: Fr Baker and Tridentine Mass Centre in Newcastle

Fr Baker celebrated Mass without approval in the old rite without permission, preached without faculties and heard confession in an unsatisfactory conditions. He is reported as saying "Since the Vatican Council there have been two churches, one of which is the modern one with new doctrines, new morality, and new liturgy. They can't excommunicate me for that Church because I have never been a member of it. But I intend to remain loyal to the real Church." He has been on radio and television and has caused us considerable embarrassment. Can you persuade him to remain in Downham Market; he intends to return in the next month?

Lindsay, Hugh Rev (1927-2009)

Bishop Lindsay to Fr Baker: No approval for Mass in Newcastle; An educated conscience?

The proposed Mass has no ecclesiastical authority - Fr Baker has not sought leave to offer Mass. Despite Fr Baker's defence of following his conscience he has overlooked the duty to educate his conscience - cites a few examples. Bishop says the Fr Baker is neglecting the guidance of Vatican II, the Pope, Bishop Grant and Bishop Clark. Even if you cannot accept these, consider deeply before leaving Downham Market to share your personal difficulties in other dioceses.

Lindsay, Hugh Rev (1927-2009)

Bishop to Correspondent: Effort to build bridges; Refusal to accept renewed mission of the Church

Every effort, long hours and many miles involved in finding bridges to attempt to persuade Fr Baker to enjoy the privacy of the Downham Market presbytery. Bishop has for many months been on TV and in print trying to explain what is at stake. "... not just a question of a liturgical rite; it is a refusal to accept the renewed mission of the Church ..."

Clark, Alan Charles Rev DD (1919-2002)

Correspondent to Bishop Clark: Challenging the Bishop's decision

Went to Downham for the Mass and stayed a week. Why do you persecute a priest because he refuses to be a heretic? 5 years ago deviant behaviours (pop masses, dancing masses...) would have resulted in excommunication on the spot. Who is right Fr Baker, or those in a free for all.
Copied to Cardinal Heenan, Apostolic Delegate, Bishop Grant

Correspondent

Decree: Administrative removal of Fr Baker as Parish Priest

Fr Baker's ministry is harmful being direct and open disobedience of the Holy See. A review of the documents sent by Fr Baker were considered by the Synodal Examiner and the Pro-Synodal Examiner as not a sufficient answer and his ministry was harmful. Fr Baker had refused to resign and hence the Bishop is removing him from his office as Parish Priest at Downham Market. He has to hand over to Father Sketch.

Grant, Charles Alexander Rev LCL BA (1906-1989)

News-cuttings - Fr Oswald Baker / Latin Rite

EDP 20-8-1975; letter; Status of Downham: RC protest
EDP 21-8-1975; article; Downham Catholics fight to keep traditional Mass; image of mother and daughter with petition for the Bishop
Daily Mail 25-8-1975; article; Pop goes Communion with paper cups and Co-op sliced / The Watchfield faithful get a taste of religion; 3 images - Sister Verity on drums / Bishop of Reading on stage / Communion in a paper cup
Guardian 25-8-1975; letters; Mass revolt of the Catholic Loyalists
Unknown 26-8-1975; letter; Traditional Mass?
Universe 29-8-1975; article; "Latin" priest supporters plan demo
The Times 29-8-1975; article; Bishop's warning on priest offering Mass in old form
Sunday Times 31-8-1975; article; Latin lovers in protest; image Fr Baker
Sunday Times 31-8-1975; article; Priest in Mass protest; 2 images - procession; Fr Baker
The Observer 31-8-1975; article; This rite is not wrong say 300 Catholics; image of Fr Baker
The Times 3-9-1975; letters; The Tridentine Mass
Catholic Herald 5-9-1975; letters; End wrangles of amateur liturgists
Catholic Herald 5-9-1975; article; Latin protest "cause of distress"; cartoon
EDP 8-9-1975; letters; Downham Mass
EDP 9-9-1975; article; Priest "refuses to see Bishop"
EDP 11-9-1975; letters; Downham Mass
EDP 11-9-1975; article; Downham priest asked to resign
Guardian 12-9-1975; article; Priest says he is hounded
The Universe 12-9-1975; article; Fr Baker won't meet Bishop Grant
The Times 12-9-1975; article; Canon law to be used to remove priest
The Guardian 13-9-1975; article; Latin mass takes to road
The Times 13-9-1975; letters; The traditional Mass
The Sunday Telegraph 14-9-1975; letters; Tridentine Mass and Anglican voluntary principle
The Guardian 14-9-1975; article; "Sensual" girls at Sunday mass
The Times 15-9-1975; article; Knives are out for Roman Catholic dissidents
EDP 17-9-1975; letters; Downham Mass
The Times 18-9-1975; letter; The traditional Mass
The Times 19-9-1975; article; Bishop's aim "to make new Mass available to all"
The Times 19-9-1975; article; Bringing the church to the people
EDP 19-9-1975; article; Bishop on his duty over the new mass
The Times 22-9-1975; letters; The traditional Mass
The Times 22-9-1975; letter; Catholic traditionalists
EDP 22-9-1975; letter Downham Mass
EDP 30-9-1975; letter Downham Mass
Sunday Express 31-8-1975; article; Catholics march to banned Mass
Unknown undated; letters; Downham Catholics and their Mass
The Sunday Times 31-8-1975; article; Latin lovers in protest
EDP 1-9-1975; article; Procession backs Downham priest; 2 images: procession; Fr Baker
The Telegraph 1-9-1975; "Liturgical bingo" of English Mass
Lynn News & Advertiser 2-9-1975; article; Catholics on the March / Downham Mass dispute grows; 2 images: procession; Fr Baker
EDP 2-9-1975; letter; Downham Mass
EDP 4-9-1975; letters; Downham Mass
EDP 6-9-1975; letter; Downham Mass
The Times 9-9-1975; re-typed by unknown; article; [Bishop Grant statement]
Catholic Herald 12-9-1975; article; Guarding against false gods
EDP 18-9-1975; letter; Downham Mass
The Guardian 20-9-1975; [photocopy] article; Church militant
EDP 23-9-1975; letter; Downham Mass
The Times 26-9-1975; letter; The traditional Mass
Catholic Herald 26-9-1975; article; Bishop Grant on Downham Market issue
Lynn News & Advertiser 10-10-1975; letters; In support of Fr Baker / And against..
The Telegraph 21-11-1975; [photocopy] article; Bad Marks for Latin
Evening News 30-6-1976; article; Rebel priest opens centre for Mass in city
The Journal 2-7-1976; article; Catholic Bishop hits at old Mass rebels; 2 images: Fr Baker; Bishop Clark
Cambridge Evening News 9-7-1976; letter;
EDP 17-7-1976; letter; Mass
EDP 19-7-1976; letter; In reply to Fr Baker
EDP 12-11-1976; article; Disused shop setting for Downham Mass
EDP 14-7-1976; letter; Mass: rebel priest "follows ruling"
EDP 15-11-1976; [reprint] article; Rebel Archbishop's "Woolies" mass; 2 images: Archbishop Lefebvre; Archbishop Lefebvre and Fr Baker

Various

Press cuttings - Fr Baker and Tridentine Mass

Photocopies of local press coverage about Fr Baker inaugurating a Tridentine Mass centre in Newcastle.
page 1: Article: Rebel priest to celebrate Latin Mass; Article: Booted out but unrepentant; letter: Oath of Loyalty
page 2/3: article: Old faith alive in the North
page 3: article: A choice of Masses today
page 4: article: North Catholics defy their Bishop

Various

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