Hilary Term: Saturday morning workshops on the Seven Spiritual Works of Mercy

Saturday 9 April

Introduction to the Seven Works of Mercy;

Counselling the doubtful;

Instructing the ignorant


Saturday 14 May

Admonishing the sinner;

Comforting the afflicted


Saturday 11 June

Forgiving offences;

Bearing wrongs patiently;

Praying for the living and the dead



Oxford in literature series: Michaelmas Term 2015 – Hilary Term 2016


There are countless stories in which the city of Oxford and its ancient university features as a backdrop for events, and in some of these the University plays such a prominent part that it almost assumes the trappings of one of the protagonists, so powerfully is it portrayed. This series of talks looks at some of the more well-known tales that can be included in this category; out of it some very different ‘Oxfords’ emerge.


Saturday 14 November ‘J. H. Newman’s Loss and Gain (1848)’, by Dr Paul Shrimpton, author of A Catholic Eton? Newman’s Oratory School (2005) and The ‘Making of Men’: the Idea and Reality of Newman’s University in Oxford and Dublin (2014)


Saturday 28 November ‘Crime Scene Oxford’, by Mr Jim Mirabal, director of Grandpont House and Domestic Bursar of Lincoln College


Saturday 30 January (Second week) Ronald Knox’s A Spiritual Aeneid (1917) by Fr Andrew Byrne, chaplain of Grandpont House


Saturday 20 February (Fifth week) Evelyn Waugh’s Brideshead Revisited by Alex Osborn



Quo Vadis? – the direction of culture (Michaelmas 2015)


Week 3 October 24th The Liberal Arts Revival in American Higher Education

Dr Susan Hanssen, Assoc. Professor of History, University of Dallas


Trinity 2015

There were two speaker meetings to mark the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice in Wonderland (1864), because of the book’s associations not just with Oxford, but also with Grandpont House. An article had appeared in the Times Literary Supplement of 4 May 2013 about ‘The real Mad Hatter’ which links Alice in Wonderland with Grandpont House, and so we were glad to invite the author of this article to give the first talk.


Saturday 9th May, Mark J. Davies, author of Alice in Waterland: Lewis Carroll and the River Thames in Oxford (2010).


Saturday 13th June, ‘ “All in the golden afternoon ...” Childhood, Meaning and Authority in Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass’, by Alex Osborn, a graduate in English Literature at University College London, and current resident of Grandpont.



Michaelmas 2014 – Hilary Term 2015



Quo Vadis? – the direction of culture

What is culture? How is it created, destroyed, transmitted and preserved? What is the trajectory of contemporary European culture, and what challenges do the next generation of intellectuals and artists face in its preservation and development? This term, we are bringing together a series of speakers to help those at university reflect about these and related questions from the perspective of their own areas of expertise. Their reflections on concrete examples from their own subject area will provide a basis for serious discussion about the content and significance of our cultural inheritance, and about our responsibility to future generations.



Week 1 January 24th Climate change: an update

Week 3 February 7th Varieties of experience in science and religion

Dr Shaun Henson, Chaplain, St Hugh's College



Week 5 February 21st Poetry and mystery

Dr Anthony Radice, schoolmaster



Week 7 March 7th The invention and destruction of political science

Nathan Pinkoski, doctoral student, St Edmund Hall



Trinity Term 2015


Tuesday 26 May, ‘The Philosophy, Psychology, and Theology of Happiness in Marriage’, by Christopher Kaczor, Professor of Philosophy, Loyola Marymount University, Visiting Fellow in Religion and Public Life, Princeton University, and author of The seven big myths about marriage: what science, faith and philosophy teach us about love and happiness (2014).




29th November 2014 Book launch




The Oxford launch of The ‘Making of Men’: the Idea and reality of Newman’s university in Oxford and Dublin took place at Grandpont on the morning of Saturday 29th November and was attended by three dozen people. The author, Paul Shrimpton, who has been the assistant director of the House for nearly twenty years, spoke at the launch about Newman’s pastoral vision for the university and about the ways in which human flourishing takes place. Earlier in the month, he read a paper at University College Dublin about themes from his book.



Long Vacation 2014



September 27th Beatification of Bishop Alvaro del Portillo





Bishop Alvaro del Portillo was the first successor of St Josemaría Escrivá as the head of Opus Dei. Bishop Alvaro made pastoral trips to Britain on several occasions and on one such trip in 1980 he was able to visit Grandpont House. He was declared ‘Blessed’ – the last step before canonization – on 27th September 2014 in Madrid. A small group from Grandpont House joined hundreds of thousands of other pilgrims on that day.



Michaelmas 2013 – Trinity 2014



Quo Vadis Series



C.S. Lewis on science and religion

Dr Michael Ward, Senior Research Fellow, Blackfriars Hall



The religious subtext of Cervantes' Don Quixote

Artem Serebrennikov, DPhil student, Exeter College



Population 7 billion: how did we get here? Where are we heading?

Dr Javier García-Manglano, postdoctoral research fellow, Nuffield College



The future of education in mathematics and science: The Royal Society’s vision

Professor Sir Martin Taylor FRS, Warden of Merton College



The Arab Spring: Syria

Oliver Miles, former British ambassador to Libya and Greece



Popes John XXIII and John Paul II: saints this vacation

Fr Andrew Byrne, chaplain of Grandpont House