People become Christians through opening their heart to God and then by belonging to God’s family, the Church. We become members of the worldwide Church through our Baptism (also known as a Christening). Like the Mass and Confession, Baptism is a sacrament. In Baptism, we receive grace from God to become his adopted sons and daughters and inheritors of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Being a Christian doesn’t stop with Baptism.
We must live out our faith in our daily lives.
We can do this by:
We should attend Mass every Sunday and if possible, other times during the week. By attending Mass, we are making time to praise God for his greatness and give thanks to him for his goodness despite our sins.
When we were baptised, we were baptised into new life with Jesus, a life that is characterised by LOVE – love of God, of friends and family and of our neighbours. We should always think therefore about how we can live our lives to reflect the love that God showed us by giving his Son.
There are a variety of reasons why people come to church for the first time. Perhaps they are new to the area or maybe they visited the church for a service like a baptism, wedding, funeral or services at Christmas or Easter. They may have been moved by something that was said, or maybe they are interested in connecting with God. Many people come into church because they feel they are being drawn in by a feeling inside of them. They may be looking for answers to life’s big questions, or seeking a place to belong. You might have attended church in the past and lapsed or you might be totally new to it. Don’t worry – you will be made to feel welcome, whatever your reasons are for coming. We will be delighted to see you. If you would like to talk to a priest, please contact us.
Setting foot into a new place can be daunting especially if you don’t know what to expect, but as the angel said to Mary, ‘Do not be afraid’. As you walk through the doors of St Mary's or St Matthew’s, you will be greeted by a friendly smile by one of our welcoming team who will hand you a mass booklet and direct you where to go. They are there to help, so please feel free to ask questions. Our Sunday morning services are just over an hour long and are followed by coffee at the back of church, which you are most welcome to join. This is a time of fellowship as we are able to chat to people and meet new members of the congregation after our worship. If you don’t want to stay for coffee, that is also fine, but do introduce yourself we will be very pleased to meet you.
Try coming to church for a few weeks and see for yourself what it is like. You will find a warm and welcoming community and it will not take long for you to feel at home. We’d love to see you!
As Anglo-Catholics, we are rooted firmly in the Catholic Tradition in the Church of England. We see the Mass as the heart of our worship, which is very similar to that of wider Catholic Church. The words and prayers in our liturgy are the same, and the use of bells and incense creates a more profound and enhanced experience of worship.
By singing hymns, we are able to connect emotionally through the stories or prayers that lie in their text. The Homily (sermon) from the priest encourages us to reflect on the scripture readings that we listen to and helps us to live out what we have heard in our lives.
The Sunday early Mass (08:00) is said, with no hymns, making it shorter at around 35 minutes. Many people are drawn to this Mass as it is quieter and more intimate.
The weekday Masses (Tues - 19:00, Wednesday 12:30, Thursday 10:00 and Friday 19:00) are also said and are a great way to attend for the first time.
There are prayer groups, group prayer on Wednesday evenings and the Rosary on Saturday morning. These groups are led by members of the congregation and are incredibly supportive.