The John Bradburne Memorial Society are hosting a concert on September 25 in Manchester.

The Centenary celebration will be an event filled with music, song, poetry and prayers to celebrate John Bradburne’s extraordinary life.

The programme will comprise of a selection of John’s poems set to music specially composed by Frederick Stocken, Gareth Treseder, Father Dominic White, Kim Porter, Philip Berthoud and many more.

Their compositions will have their world premiere at the event and will be performed at The Holy Name by The Bury Choral Society, The Zimbabwean Community Choir England & Wales, The Didsbury String Quartet, The Gurkha Band and much more.

There will be poetry read by Professor David Crystal, Maria Apichelle and David Tibet and a talk given by the Bishop of Lancaster, The Right Reverend Paul Swarbrick and prayers by the Bishop of Salford, The Right Reverend John Arnold.

John Bradburne was born at Skirwith in Cumbria on June 14 1921 and was the son of an Anglican vicar. He served with the Gurkhas and Chindits in the Second World War and after a conversion experience in Malaya, he became a Catholic in 1947.

After many years wandering England, Italy and the Middle East, he finally found his calling as a lay Franciscan missionary in Zimbabwe and he devoted the latter part of his life to helping forgotten leprosy patients at the Mutemwa Leprosy Settlement.

He refused to leave the settlement during the Zimbabwean civil war and was abducted and shot dead on September 5 1979.

In 2019, the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in Rome formally began the cause of his beatification.

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