Canadian Cardinal visits Portsmouth in 1972

One of the Roman Catholic Church’s leading administrators – Cardinal Maurice Roy, Archbishop of Quebec – made a nostalgic whistle-stop tour to the Portsmouth area to revisit wartime haunts.

Friday, 8th November 2019, 3:43 pm
The Rev David Mahy, left, conducts the Cardinal on a tour of Portsmouth RC Cathedral. Bishop Worlock is on the right.

He was the chief celebrant in a sung Latin mass at Quarr Abbey, Ryde; visited St John’s Cathedral, Portsmouth; the pastoral centre at Park Place, Wickham; and the Army garrison at Bordon, near Petersfield. His guide was Bishop Derek Worlock. 

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Throughout the war, he was chaplain to the 1st Canadian Army Corps, was stationed at Aldershot and Guildford with them, and went to Italy with the Canadians in 1943. 

While in Britain, he made frequent visits to Quarr Abbey. He came back to this area at the end of the war en route to Canada. ‘I was going to Quarr but missed the last ferry to the Island. I booked into a hotel. When I went to draw the blackout curtains, I saw all the lights of Portsmouth were on – the war was over.’ 

Archbishop of Quebec for 25 years, he was president of the worldwide Laity Council which annually met in Rome.