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Pupils uncover the story of St John Southworth

A new film tells the story of St John Southworth’s mission to the poor, his trial and execution at Tyburn, and the discovery of his body in France

By on Thursday, 15 December 2011

Douay Martyrs pupils with the film crew which shot a short film about St John Southworth (Eddie Tulasiewicz)

Douay Martyrs pupils with the film crew which shot a short film about St John Southworth (Eddie Tulasiewicz)

Filmed on location in London, and aimed for use in schools, a new film tells the story of St John Southworth’s mission to the poor, his trial and execution at Tyburn in London and how his body was discovered in France in the early 20th century.

The 22-minute film then explains that the saint’s remains were returned to England and received into Westminster Cathedral in 1936.

In Search of St John Southworth follows four secondary school children from Douay Martyrs School in Ickenham, Middlesex, on a pilgrimage around London as they find out more about the life and work of St John Southworth.

The pilgrimage is led by Fr Paolo Bagini, who at the time of filming was about to be ordained a Catholic priest.

An interview with Archbishop Vincent Nichols forms part of the film in which he talks about how St John Southworth continues to inspire Catholics in their faith and vocations to the priesthood.

Born in 1592, St John devoted his life to caring for and administering the sacraments to the poor and plague victims in and around the area of London where Westminster Cathedral now stands. He was martyred on June 28 1654. His remains are now kept in the Chapel of St George and the English Martyrs in Westminster Cathedral. He was beatified in 1929 and canonised as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales by Pope Paul VI in 1970.