PAST MEMBERS OF THE COMMUNITY

Very Rev. Fr HENRY VINCENT HUGH POPE, S.T.M.

Born at Kenilworth 5 August, 1869, son of Thomas Vercoe Pope. Educated at the Oratory School, Birmingham, and at Queen's College, Birmingham, where he studied medicine. Received the habit at Woodchester 29 September, 1891 and professed on the same day, 1891 Studied philosophy at Woodchester until 1894 when he was transferred to the newly erected house of studies at Hawkesyard, being a member of the first community there. Ordained priest by Bishop Ilsley of Birmingham in September, 1896, and sent to complete his theological course at Louvain, where in 1898 he passed the examination for the lectorate in sacred theology. Assigned to Hawkesyard as professor of sacred Scripture in 1898 and appointed librarian. Subprior of Hawkesyard, 1904-7. Passed the examination for the licentiate of sacred Scripture before the Biblical Commission in Rome in 1908 and the doctorate in 1909.

In the same year the Master General, Fr Cormier, appointed him professor of Scripture in the newly founded Dominican University of the Angelicum in Rome and created him a master in theology in 1911. Returned to Hawkesyard in 1913 and spent his time in literary work and preaching. In 1914 elected Prior of Woodchester where he began a course of open-air preaching which was later to grow into a nation-wide movement under the name of the Catholic Evidence Guild. After a second term as prior he was nominated regent of studies at Hawkesyard and when the theological studies were transferred in 1929 to Oxford he went to that centre, still as regent of both houses. He vacated this office in 1932 and once more returned to Hawkesyard where he continued his work as a writer and preacher, but in 1934 at the request of the governors of the Oratory School and of the archbishop of Birmingham, he went for a year to act as chaplain at the school's new quarters at Caversham, near Reading. In 1935 he was elected prior of Hawkesyard and continued in that office until 194I. He remained a member of the community there during 1941-2 but spent about six months in Ireland on sick leave. Finally he went to Edinburgh as superior of St Albert's and died there in the 78th year of his age, the 55th of his profession and the 51st of his priesthood on the 23 of November 1946.

His literary output was an extensive one, including contributions to many Catholic Reviews throughout the English-speaking world, and several pamphlets for the Catholic Truth Society. His major works were:

  • Father Thomas Burke, O.P., 1893;
  • The Date of the Book of Deuteronomy, Rome, 1911;
  • St Thomas on Prayer and the Contemplative Life, 1914;
  • Catholic Student's Aids to the Bible, 1911-38, 5 vols., several editions;
  • The Layman's New Testament, 1927 and 1929;
  • The Church and the Bible, 1928;
  • Translation of Gasparri's Catechism, 1931;
  • Life and Times of Saint Augustine, 1937.