Fr. Matthew Cashmore

Priest in the Church of England. Father, husband, son. Keen biker.

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Origen & Tertulian on the Transfiguration

Wednesday 17th June, 7pm

by Fr. Peter Anthony

The Transfiguration, the story of Jesus’ remarkable display of Glory, described in the Synoptic Gospels. An often misunderstood and overlooked episode in the life of Jesus, but a staple of the Orthodox Church. This lecture touches on the teaching of both Origen and Tertullian. Origen of Alexandria was born around 184 and is a Church Father, Christian Scholar and ascetic who has written roughly 2,000 treatise in various and multiple branches of theology – he has been described as ‘The Greatest Genius the Early Church ever produced’ Tertullian was born around 155 in Carthage and was a prolific author – an early Christian Apologist and a polemicist against heresy, including Gnosticism. An important contribution was made to the development by Tertullian but despite this he was never formally declared a Saint by either East or Western Catholic tradition churches.

Fr Peter Anthony is the Vicar of the Parish of Kentish Town. He arrived here in the summer of 2013, having come from working in Oxford at St Stephen’s House and Merton College. He is originally from Bolton, but became an ordinand of the Diocese of London, after having worked as a pastoral assistant at St Paul’s, Tottenham. He was formed and trained for ordination at St Stephen’s House, Oxford, and served a curacy in Hendon. He is a Biblical Scholar of some note, teaches the Pastoral Assistants Scheme Theology Seminars, and is one of the Editors of the blog ‘All Things Lawful and Honest’


Wednesday 1st July, 7pm

by Fr. Thomas Plant

Ron Dreher’s Benedict Option has invited emulation and opprobrium in equal measure, with some Christians embracing his call to the cloister and others finding his vision isolationist, exclusive or worse. Is it possible to resist the relativist and consumerist ideology so inimical to a sacramental understanding of the world without complete withdrawal? Might Christians not find allies outside the fold? The 6th century writings of the monk who called himself Dionysius the Areopagite were inspired by S Paul’s mission in the marketplace of polytheistic Athens. They offer an ascetical, sacramental approach to the re-enchantment of the secularised world based on a metaphysical nondualism shared by the majority of the world’s ancient religious philosophies, leaving modern western secularism isolated in its dualistic tendencies. The method, means, metaphysics and influence of the Areopagite show a way for adherents of traditional philosophies to work together without conforming to the secular categorisation of mutually exclusive “religions,” relativised into discrete, commodified identities and lifestyle choices.

Priest, Platonist, Prayer Book provocateur, Fr Thomas Plant has served in parish ministry, school and cadet force chaplaincy, and as a university lecturer. A classicist-turned-theologian, he has studied at St Andrews, Bristol and Cambridge, where for his doctorate he compared the metaphysics and soteriology of Dionysius the Areopagite and the Japanese Buddhist Shinran Shonin. He is a frequent contributor to the Living Church: Covenant blog and publishes his own catechetical books on He moonlights as an Aikido instructor and writer of Lovecraftian horror fiction. Follow him on Twitter @thosplant.

Sergi Bulgakov

Wednesday 24th June, 7pm

by John Millbank

Sergei Nikolaevich Bulgakov (1871-1944) was a Russian Orthodox theologian, priest, philosopher and economist who was elected to the Duma, a professor in Church Law and Theology, and helped to found l’Institut de Théologie Orthodoxe Saint-Serge in Paris. He is a complex character who lived during a particularly turbulent period of Russian history. He faced accusations of heresy for his teaching on sophiology, but his work on what has been called “a Christian theory of cultural activity” has been seen as anticipating Radical Orthodoxy’s postmodern, metacritical methodology as well as its objective to “out-narrate” the secular by showing how the Christian tradition corrects the nihilism present within the logic of modernity.

John Milbank founded the radical orthodoxy movement. His work crosses disciplinary boundaries, integrating subjects such as systematic theology, social theory, ethics, aesthetics, philosophy, political theory, and political theology. He first gained recognition after publishing Theology and Social Theory in 1990, which laid the theoretical foundations for the movement which later became known as radical orthodoxy. John Milbank has named the Russian sophiological tradition, particularly the work of Sergej Bulgakov, as an intellectual ally and his interest in Bulgakov has been developing since at least 2002.

St. Teresa of Avila

The Way of Perfection

By The Rev’d Dr Ayla Lepine

In St Teresa of Avila’s The Way of Perfection, completed c.1566, she offers wisdom to Carmelite nuns on prayer, spirituality, and living in community. A Doctor of the Church, Teresa’s theological views are bold, clear, and uncompromising. She was a reformer, founding a vast number of religious houses for men and women in the sixteenth century, often under extreme pressure. Meanwhile, her inner life of prayer and her writing are consistently marked by her openness to change and her understanding of the need for constant calibration and adaptation. Her work was determined and strategic, not rigid or cynical. Flexibility was a primary component of what would become her movement’s consistency. This talk will explore Teresa’s approach to love, detachment, and change in The Way, connecting these themes with two artworks depicting Teresa’s most intensive encounters with God: Bernini’s St Teresa in Ecstasy (1647-52), and Rubens’ St Teresa of Avila’s Vision of the Holy Spirit (1612-14).

The Rev'd Dr Ayla Lepine

The Revd Dr Ayla Lepine’s research focuses on intersections across theology and the arts. Following her PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art, she was a post-doctoral fellow at Yale and the Courtauld, and Lecturer and Visiting Fellow in Art History at the University of Essex. While at theological college in Cambridge, she completed an MPhil in Anglican Studies on the Reservation of the Blessed Sacrament in the Church of England. Her publications include articles on monastic architecture, the Hereford Screen, and modern British art, and the book Architecture and Religious Communities: Building the Kingdom (Routledge, 2018). She is a contributor to the Visual Commentary on Scripture ( and a trustee of the charity Art and Christianity. She is Assistant Curate at Hampstead Parish Church in London.

Martin Thornton

Parish Prayer Life

By Fr. Matthew Dallman obl OSB

Fr Martin Thornton (1915-1986) was a farmer, Anglican priest, and theologian. Spurred by a mystical “beech tree experience” as a farmer, he pursued Holy Orders, receiving degrees from King’s College, London (under Eric Symes Abbott) and later Christ College, Cambridge (under Ian Ramsey). He was twice visiting lecturer at The General Theological Seminary in New York, where he received an honorary doctorate in 1966, and from 1975 until his death was Canon Chancellor of Truro Cathedral under Bp Graham Leonard, who called Fr Thornton “the most natural and supernatural Christian I have known.” He wrote thirteen books that focused on pastoral and ascetical theology, always in a mode of ressourcement attuned to Prayer Book pastoral sensibility, with wide-ranging topics that include scriptural exegesis, liturgical life especially the importance of the daily Office, “parochial theology” (a term he coined), personal devotion and prayer, spiritual direction in both its art and science, asceticism, as well as pastoral studies on specific voices within what he calls the “English School of Catholic spirituality” from Anselm to the Caroline Divines and on through Macquarrie, with most attention given to Margery Kempe. His book The Purple Headed Mountain was the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent book for 1963.

Fr Matthew C. Dallman, Obl.S.B. is a parish priest for the Parish of Tazewell County in the Episcopal Diocese of Springfield (Illinois). He is an Oblate to St John’s Abbey, Collegeville (MN) and the leading authority on the theology of Fr Martin Thornton, whose works he has exclusive permission to reissue. He has an M.T.S. from Nashotah House (with thesis on the theology of Martin Thornton, which included meetings with Thornton’s wife Monica and daughter Magdalen, along with Benedicta Ward, Rowan Williams, Allison Milbank, and George Westhaver), an M.A. in Liturgical Ministry from Catholic Theological Union, and baccalaureate from Washington University in St Louis (English Literature and Creative Writing). For ten years he has had an active social-media ministry to promote Thornton’s insights on prayer, parish life, and ascetical spirituality, which led him seven years ago to found Akenside Institute for English Spirituality (AIES) and its publishing arm, Akenside Press. Its purpose is to develop resources that aid the rediscovery of orthodox-catholic reality in Prayer Book parish life. He lives in Pekin, Illinois (near Peoria) with his wife, five children, seven chickens, two cats, and a dog. He bakes traditional sourdough bread to feed the natives.

The talk will be given via Zoom – use this link to schedule the presentation in your Zoom App. If you’re unable to join using the Zoom App you’ll be able to dial into the presentation on your phone using these details:

+44 203 051 2874
+44 203 481 5237
+44 203 481 5240
+44 131 460 1196

Meeting ID: 646 439 9143
Password: 973344

After the presentation a recording will be uploaded to this page.

St. Augustine

An Invitation To Prayer

Wednesday 27th May, 7pm

By Kirsty Borthwick.

Challenging child, avid thinker, monastic leader, Bishop, Father of Western Theology, person of prayer: St Augustine of Hippo is a fascinating and enigmatic character. In this seminar we’ll explore his understanding and experience of prayer through a variety of his writings, including his Confessions, his sermons, his letters, his commentaries and his monastic rule. Augustine has much to teach us about prayer and theology, prayer and the life of the church and, above all, prayer as Christ’s activity, which we are invited to join.

Kirsty Borthwick is an ordinand at Westcott House, and is finishing a PhD on the doctrine of prayer, in conversation with Augustine’s trinitarian theology. She is examining what it means to pray to the Father “in the power of the Spirit and in union with Christ”. God and Bishop willing, she hopes to return to the Diocese of St Albans for curacy, and to continue exploring what it means to be a theological educator.

Shenoute the Great


Wednesday 3rd June, 7pm

By Jarel Robinson-Brown

In recent times the writings of Shenoute the Great have been appreciated for their unique contribution to the ancient writings of early Egyptian monasticism and in this session we will consider Shenoute’s writings around Discipline and Desire in 4th century Egypt’.

Jarel Robinson-Brown is an Honorary Chaplain at King’s College London and postgraduate student at St Mellitus College London. His main interests are in Church History (particularly Late Antique Egypt) and Liberation Theology.’ ‘Whilst many Egyptian saints throughout history enjoy a certain degree of fame through the writings of the desert fathers or a focus on Christian history in Alexandria – Shenoute of Atripe has been a rather elusive figure in the history of the Church, and the history of monasticism in particular.

Martin Luther


Wednesday 10th June, 7pm

By The Rt. Rev’d. Dr. Graham Tomlin

Martin Luther is well known for his advocacy of the authority of Scripture within the church. In this lecture, Bishop Graham will explore why this was so important for Luther, how he felt Scripture should be interpreted, and something of the legacy of Luther’s views on the Bible in subsequent church history and theology.

The Rt Revd Dr Graham Tomlin is Bishop of Kensington and President of St Mellitus College. Among past roles he has served as Chaplain of Jesus College Oxford and Vice Principal of Wycliffe Hall, Oxford, where he taught within the Theology Faculty of Oxford University on Historical Theology, specialising in the Reformation period. He was the first Dean of St Mellitus College. He is the author of many books and articles, including The Power of the Cross: Theology and the Death of Christ in Paul, Luther and Pascal (1999), a biography of Martin Luther entitled Luther and his World (2002), Looking through the Cross (the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lent Book for 2014), and Luther’s Gospel: Reimagining the World (2018). He is married to Janet and has two children and three grandchildren. He suffers a lifelong addiction to Bristol City Football Club.

St. Ignatius Loyola

Finding God in all Things

By Sr. Gemma Simmonds

Ignatius Loyola (1491-1556) is chiefly known outside the Roman Catholic church for his Spiritual Exercises, which are increasingly popular beyond the borders of his own faith community.  Recognizably a mystic in the medieval tradition he  

founded the missionary Society of Jesus or Jesuit order whose members have been famous as scientists, explorers, schoolteachers, artists, musicians and builders.  One Jesuit motto, ‘For the greater glory of God’ points to a striving for excellence in all human achievements, while the other, ‘Finding God in all things’ suggests that holiness is found in the ordinary.  The Ignatian Spiritual Exercises above all point to the graced and redeemed life being one that is lived to the full.

Sr Gemma Simmonds

Gemma Simmonds is a sister of the Congregation of Jesus, founded by Mary Ward (1585-1609).  She is a senior lecturer in pastoral theology based at the Margaret Beaufort Institute of Theology in Cambridge where she is director of the Religious Life Institute.  She lectured in Christian Spirituality at Heythrop College, University of London from 2005 until its closure in 2018, specializing in Spiritual Direction in the Ignatian tradition.  An international speaker and lecturer working in the fields of Christian spirituality and ecclesiology, she has been a missionary in Brazil and a chaplain in the Universities of Cambridge and London as well as a chaplaincy volunteer in Holloway Prison for 26 years.  She is a regular broadcaster on religious matters on the BBC.  Her book, The Way of Ignatius, was published by SPCK for Lent 2019 and was serialised as the Lenten retreat on Pray As You Go  Her most recent book, Treasuring God’s Word is published by Pauline Books and Media

The talk will be given via Zoom – use this link to schedule the presentation in your Zoom App. If you’re unable to join using the Zoom App you’ll be able to dial into the presentation on your phone using these details:

+44 203 051 2874
+44 203 481 5237
+44 203 481 5240
+44 131 460 1196

Meeting ID: 646 439 9143
Password: 973344

After the presentation a recording will be uploaded to this page.

St. Anselm’s, Hayes

Side chapel in St. Anslem's church Hayes

I am thrilled to announce that from the 22nd July 2020 I will be the new Priest in Charge at St. Anselm’s, Hayes

Hayes is an extraordinary town that has a diverse and vibrant life. It’s situated to the West of London on the Grand Union Canal and was the home of EMI – which is where, amongst other things, the Beatles albums were pressed before being sent around the world.

Its position on the Grand Union Canal, the M4 and now on Crossrail means it has always been a hub of exciting new ideas and life. A place of interaction between many different communities, cultures, and histories.

My calling has always been to find the spark of God in everyone and fan it into an inferno of Love in Jesus Christ. I look forward to serving the people of Hayes in that Love.

Why now? This is the usual period of time it takes from entrance to seminary to first post – six years in total of formal training. I now go into my first church where I am responsible (with the Bishop) for the cure of souls of the parish. It will be my job to care for and love the people of Hayes Town as a father does his children.

Catherine and I looked back at our diaries this week to see how long we had been on this path. My first meeting about this was eight years ago… in some ways that time has flown by, in others… it’s moved rather more slowly!

We move towards the end of June, there’s lots and lots to organise before we get to that point – not least the incredibly hard goodbye to the people and families of St. Mary’s, Kenton where I will have served the last 16 months of my curacy. I will post separately about that nearer the time of us actually leaving.

My last Sunday in the parish of St. Mary’s will be the 21st June 2020 (Fathers Day), and my licensing at St. Anselm’s, Hayes will be on the 22nd July 2020 (St. Mary Magdalen) at 7pm, you are all very warmly invited.

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