The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Southwark covers the London boroughs south of the Thames,
the County of Kent and the Medway Unitary Authority


Archbishop Peter Smith

Our Archbishop is
Archbishop Peter Smith
who was installed
at Saint George's Cathedral on 10th June 2010


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Born for This

CJM’s 'Born for This' was presented by Southwark Catholic Youth Service and the Order of the Carmelites in partnership with Catholic Secondary Schools at the Aylesford Priory on Saturday 5th April and St George’s Cathedral on Sunday 6th April.

It was a very moving and prayerful depiction of the Stations of the Cross which was valued by all present.

The shrine of St. Augustine of England, Ramsgate

The shrine of St. Augustine of England, Ramsgate, will open to visitors seven days a week from 1st April. This is made possible by volunteers from the Parish and from the Pugin Society, and is in addition to the daily worship that already takes place there.
The new opening times are 10am – 4pm every day. Daily Mass is held at 12pm, followed by devotions.
The new opening times will open up access to the church for the increasing number of visitors who come from around the world.
St. Augustine’s is developing an Education, Research, and Visitor Centre, with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, and the new opening times are key to bringing more visitors to St. Augustine’s and to Thanet.
Rector, Fr. Marcus Holden, said, “Recently daytrippers visited from London, expecting such a major building to be open each day. Such an important place for England and the world – religiously, historically, and architecturally – should be open, and we are delighted to be able to meet this expectation.”
St. Augustine’s has several cultural events planned for this year, as well as numerous pilgrimages, and architectural and archaeological visits. In the last week of May the site is hosting the annual St. Augustine Week. In September, the site will host the inaugural Pugin Festival.
St. Augustine’s was designated a diocesan shrine of St. Augustine on
1st March 2012 by Archbishop Peter Smith, and contains one of two known relics of St. Augustine. This is the first shrine to the founder of English Christianity since his tomb at St. Augustine’s, Canterbury, was destroyed during the Reformation. 
St Augustine Ramsgate volunteers 2014-3

Archbishop Visits St Joseph's Primary, Surbiton

Archbishop Peter paid a visit to the Primary School in Surbiton to bless their new chapel. The pupils gathered for an assembly with hymns and scripture readings. Archbishop Peter explained to the children the reasons we have special places for prayer, and encouraged them to use their new chapel.

140404 - Blessing of the new Chapel at St Jospeh's Primary School - Surbiton

140404 - Blessing of the new Chapel at St Jospeh's Primary School - Surbiton
Archbishop Peter speaking to the children
(the entrance to the new chapel can be seen on the left)

After the assembly Archbishop Peter spent some time with the School, visiting the pupils in their class rooms.
Futher photos of the Assembly on the Flickr Page

Start of Parish Jubilee Year

The Parish of The Annunciation and St. Augustine, Beckenham Hill and Bellingham, have begun a special year of celebrations as they begin to mark the Golden jubilee of the dedication of the Church. Bishop Pat Lynch joined the parish and Fr Mark Odion for the Inaugural Mass of their Jubilee Year, together with other priests and deacons from the diocese.

140322 - Inaugural Mass to mark the beginning of the Jubilee Year of Beckenham Hill and Bellingham

140322 - Inaugural Mass to mark the beginning of the Jubilee Year of Beckenham Hill and Bellingham

140322 - Inaugural Mass to mark the beginning of the Jubilee Year of Beckenham Hill and Bellingham
Bishop Pat speaks with some of the parishioners
as the celebrations continue

The following day parishioners gathered for a Parish Stewardship Conference. This day helped those who attended to recognise their role as stewards of God's gifts; including "Time, Talents and Treasure."

140323 - Stewardship Conference at Beckenham Hill and Bellingham

For further photos of these events visit our Flickr Page:
    Inaugural Mass
    Stewardship Conference

Pope appoints Mgr Nicholas Hudson
as new Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster

It has been announced in Rome today
(31st March) that the Holy Father has appointed Mgr Nicholas Hudson as an Auxiliary Bishop in Westminster, Titular Bishop of Saint Germans. The Bishop-Elect is currently Parish Priest of the Sacred Heart Parish, Wimbledon, having taken up the appointment in January, following on from his post as Rector of the Venerable English College, Rome.

Mgr Nicholas Hudson’s episcopal ordination will take place in Westminster Cathedral at 11am on Wednesday 4th June.

Archbishop Peter was very pleased when he heard news of the appointment and said:
"On behalf of the Bishops, clergy, religious and laity in the Archdiocese of Southwark, I offer my hearty congratulations to Mgr. Nicholas Hudson on his appointment as Auxiliary Bishop in Westminster.

I am very sorry that we will be losing him from Southwark but I know that Westminster will be very fortunate to have a new Auxiliary Bishop with a wide experience of dedicated priestly ministry over the past 28 years; in Canterbury Parish, at the Diocesan Christian Education Centre and as Vice Rector and Rector of the Venerable English College in Rome from 2000 until 2013. He will be missed especially by the parishioners of the Sacred Heart parish, Wimbledon, his home parish, to which he was appointed parish priest only this January. However, Southwark’s loss is Westminster’s gain - and will be very blessed to have him as one of their Auxiliary Bishops.

(Archbishop Peter with Mgr Nicholas)

I assure Mgr. Nicholas of our prayers and good wishes as he prepares to take up his Episcopal appointment in Westminster in the near future."

Mgr Nicholas Hudson said:
“I feel both honoured and humbled to have been appointed by the Holy Father, Pope Francis, as Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster. I will do everything in my capacity to serve and assist His Eminence Cardinal Nichols in his ministry as Pastor of the Diocese.
“Coming from the south side of the Thames, I have always felt at home in both Westminster and Southwark. I look forward now to getting to know the Diocese of Westminster very much better: the great number of clergy, laity, religious, parishes, schools, and colleges; the many people of other Christian denominations and of other faith traditions – and help them in our shared journey of faith.
“It is exciting to be a Catholic in this second year of the pontificate of Pope Francis.  I pray that I might emulate the Holy Father’s radical simplicity and outreach to those on the margins of society and of the Church.  Of all the many gifts received as a priest of Southwark most precious has been the privilege of knowing people with severe disabilities, who call us to make a place always for the poor at the heart of the Church. 
“As I prepare to cross the river, my heart is full of gratitude to my home diocese, not least the Parish of the Sacred Heart, Wimbledon, where I first received the Faith.  It has been a joy to serve there since January as parish priest: I am only sorry I cannot not stay there longer.  I thank my family; thank the priests and people of the parish where I was first a priest, in Canterbury; thank all those with whom I worked in the field of R.E. and Catechesis at the Southwark Christian Education Centre.  I would wish to thank as well the staff and students of the Venerable English College: years of helping to form future priests in Rome rekindled within me that sense of mission with which I first offered myself for the priesthood some twenty-seven years ago, a mission which I feel privileged now to share with the people and clergy of Westminster.”

In the Sacristy after Mass
Photograph after Mgr Nicholas' Induction Mass at Wimbledon
(left to right) Bishop Elect Nicholas, with Fr Dermott Preston SJ(Jesuit Provincial), Archbishop Peter Smith, Bishop John Arnold (Auxiliary in Westminster), Bishop Howard Tripp (Retired Southwark Auxiliary)

Recent News added to the website:

Below you will find several new items of recent news from over the last few weeks:
Presentation of Awards in Morden Parish
Opening of new Retreat Centre in Ramsgate
"Mark Cross" Reunion
New Deacon for Aylesford Carmelite Community
Induction of New Parish Priest at Tenterden

Please pray for our regular "Web Technician" who has been very seriously ill in hospital. Has improved slightly, but is still in hospital.
Mary and The Website Team

Induction of New Parish Priest at Tenterden

Archbishop Peter celebrated Mass in Parish of St Andrew, Tenterden, and inducted the new Parish Priest. Inductions are not unusual in the diocese, however this particular induction was a first for the Archbishop: the first time he had inducted a Bishop as a parish priest - Bishop John Hine.

140323 - Mass and Induction of Bishop John - Tenterten
Archbishop Peter (left) received Bishop John's commitment to the Parish

Following Bishop John reaching his 75th birthday last summer, he stepped down from his day to day responsibilities for the Kent and Medway areas of the Diocese. He did not, however, to completely retire, and so offered to look after Tenterden Parish, following the resignation on health grounds of Mgr Ted Hill.

140323 - Mass and Induction of Bishop John - Tenterten
After Mass (left to right):
Deacon Jolyon Vickers (Parish Deacon), Bishop John Hine (Parish Priest),
Archbishop Peter, Fr Paul Mason (Episcopal Vicar for Kent)
and Canon John Clark (Dean of the Maidstone Deanery).

New Deacon for Aylesford Carmelite Community

140319 - Ordination of Deacon Paul Jenkins
Fr Wilfrid (Provincial), Deacon Paul & Archbishop Peter after Mass

Br Paul Jenkins O.Carm. was ordained to the Diaconate by
Archbishop Peter during a Mass on the afternoon of 19th March, the Solemnity of St Joseph, in the Relic Chapel at Aylesford Priory.
Please pray for Br Paul, as he begins his diaconal ministry and continues his discernment for ordination to the priesthood.

140319 - Ordination of Deacon Paul Jenkins

For more pictures "click here" see our Flick page

"Mark Cross" Reunion

Mark Cross Reunion 2014
On Tuesday 19 March 2014, the Solemnity of St Joseph, there was a reunion of past students and staff of the former Junior Seminary,
St Joseph’s, College, Mark Cross.  Over 100 people gathered for the Reunion in the Amigo Hall, next to the Cathedral.  Following coffee
Tony Castle gave an outline of the story of Mark Cross.  Mass was celebrated in St George’s Cathedral at which Bishop Tripp presided along with Bishop Francis Walmsley (both former Mark Cross students from the 1940s) and some 20 concelebrants.  After lunch in the Amigo Hall Fr Peter Soper paid an affectionate tribute to Monsignor Westlake by recalling some of his words of wisdom in the style of the ‘Scratch Concerts’ well known to Mark Cross and Wonersh alumni.

Mark Cross Reunion 2014
The gathered Alumni,
including Fr Peter Soper standing in for the late "Monsignor Westlake"

The day was a great success and many have sent emails to express their thanks and appreciation for the reunion.  Bishop Tripp emailed to say;
It was a great turnout – and good to realize that so many appreciate the part played by St Joseph’s College  in their education, formation and development.”  

St Joseph’s College opened as a Junior Seminary on Friday 7th November 1924 and closed on Tuesday 16 June 1970.  During the 46-years of its existence it had only two Rectors – Monsignor Ernest Corbishley (1924-59) and Monsignor William Westlake (1959-1970).

In Monsignor Corbishley’s Journal for Friday 7 November 1924 he wrote the following:
The Junior Students from St John’s Seminary, Wonersh, arrived at their new ‘Alma Mater’ – St Joseph’s College – on Friday November 7th 1924 at 5.30pm. In spite of a definite guarantee that the electric lights would be installed by this date, the much desired light was not forthcoming and consequently the students had their first glimpse of their new ‘Alma Mater’ by candlelight.  St Joseph’s College opened with 73 students (twenty new students).”

Further photos on the Diocesan "Flickr" page

Opening of new Retreat Centre in Ramsgate

On Sunday 16th March, Archbishop Peter was invited to celebrate Mass at the opening of the new "Divine Retreat Centre" in Ramsgate. The new centre is a foundation of "The Potta-Divine retreat ministry" which is part of the renewal movement of the Vincentian Congregation of India (Marymatha Province), based on the spiritual traditions bequeathed by Saint Vincent de Paul. The opening follows the completion of the purchase of the site in Ramsgate formerly occupied by the Benedictine Monks (who moved to Chilworth, near Guildford).

Mass to Inaugurate and Bless the "Divine Retreat Centre" Ramsgate
Archbishop Peter delivering his homily

The Mass was celebrated in a large marquee which held the congregation of over 1,300 people (and, as can be seen in the photographs, a Tree). The Centre will also provide a home and studio for the European work of their Divine TV Ministry (a satellite and internet based service). Among those who joined the Archbishop for Mass were Rev. Dr. Paul Puthuva VC, Provincial Superior, Marymatha Province, Vincentian Congregation andf Mgr. John Armitage, Vicar General of Brentwood. After the Mass and the blessing of the building words of thanks and support were given by some of the Vincentian community and guests.

Mass to Inaugurate and Bless the "Divine Retreat Centre" Ramsgate
Mgr. John Armitage addressing the assembly after Mass

More photos on our Flickr page
More photos on the Divine Retreat Centre website
Link to an overview of the work of the Divine Retreat Centre

Presentation of Awards in Morden Parish

Archbishop Peter celebrated Mass in the Parish of Saint Teresa of the Child Jesus, Morden on Sunday 9th March, during which he presented four parishioners with awards in recognition of their dedicated service to the Parish and the local community. Margaret O’Donovan, David O’Connor, Winnie Mann and William Hanrahan, together with friends and family met with the Archbishop after Mass.

Mass at St Teresa's, Morden, and the giving of 3 Diocean awards and a Papal award
Archbishop Peter with the award recipients  and Fr John Mulligan.

Visit our Flickr page for more photographs of the Mass and presentation.

Sense and Nonsense on ‘Assisted Dying’

An Assisted Dying Bill to legalise assisted suicide is currently before Parliament. There is often confusion about what ‘assisted dying’ means. The Bishops' Conference has compiled a briefing note which explains simply and clearly what the issues are, and what the Church says. Copies of this short briefing note can be found on the Bishops' Conference website:

Upcoming International Conference in Rome
on Human Trafficking

Bishop Pat visited Fr Michael Branch and Parishioners in St. Peter's Parish, Woolwich, to bless a new picture of
St Josephine Bakhita, who was the victim of human trafficking, and to ask parishioners to pray for the success of the upcoming International Conference in Rome on Human Trafficking which will take place on April 9th and 10th.
It is expected that the Holy Father will himself will join the conference for a short period to meet the participants - some victims of human trafficking, some bishops from around the world and up to twenty heads of police from different countries.  We ask that you keep the success of the conference in your prayers.

In related news The Holy See signed a joint statment, which announced the goal of eradicating modern slavery and human trafficking across the world by 2020. Signed on the Feast of St Patrick, who was himself a slave for part of his life, the joint statement was issued on behalf of:
the Holy Father, Pope Francis;
the Grand Imam of Al Azhar, Egypt Dr Mahmoud Azab;
the Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend Justin Welby;
and the Walk Free Foundation.
The statement began "Modern slavery and human trafficking are crimes against humanity." Click here for the Vatican Press Release and full text.

Jubilee Celebrations
at Holy Family Parish, Sutton Green

On Sunday 2nd March Archbishop Peter joined the congregation of a packed Holy Family Church, Sutton Green, as they celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Dedication of their church building. Fr Julian Shurgold, the current parish priest, and Canon Luke Verhees concelebrated the anniversary Mass with the Archbishop.

Holy Family Church, Sutton Green during the Anniversary Mass

At the end of Mass Fr Barry Angus who had been parish priest when Archbishop Bowen dedicated the church, joined the Archbishop and parishioners as the celebrations continued in the Parish Hall.

Visit our Flickr page for more photographs of this day.

Archbishop Peter meets parishioners after Mass,
with Fr Julian Shurgold and Fr Barry Angus

National Week of Prayer and Awareness of Dementia (12 - 19 March)

With over 800,000 people in the UK diagnosed with having a form of dementia, raising awareness and enabling others to help in some small way can make such a difference. The organisers of this initiative recognise that response in recent years has been encouraging, and hope that this year on each of the days there will be times of prayer in parishes and schools throughout the UK and Ireland. We are all invited to get involved in the week of prayer 12-19th March 2014.
Archbishop Peter is supporting this initiative, and will celebrate the 12.30pm Mass in the Cathedral on Tuesday 18th March for “those who suffer from Dementia and those who care for them
Prayer and Awareness Week resources are available to download from the website of the "Pastoral Care Project"

"Today’s Mass" newsletter inserts

A new series of these popular newsletter inserts - written by Fr David Gibbons, Director of the diocesan Centre for Catholic Formation - is available for Lent 2014.  Simply click on the link on the left toolbar .  Alternatively, visit the ‘Downloads’ page of the CCF website or email the CCF office.  The insert for each Sunday can easily be copied and pasted into newsletters.

lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Father Patrick (Ambrose) McLoughlin

who died on 9th March 2014

His Funeral Mass will be 
in the Church of the Immaculate Conception,
Bonniconlon, Co Mayo
on Wednesday, 12th March, at 12 noon

May he rest in peace


A joyful step on the journey of faith

On Saturday, 8th March 2014, Archbishop Peter presided at the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion at Saint George's Cathedral.

Signing the Book of the Elect
One of the Catechumens Signing the Book of the Elect

The Cathedral was full as the almost 296 Catechumens, who will be baptised and the 211 Candidates, who will be received into full communion with the Catholic Church in their parishes at the Easter Vigil gathered with their god-parents, sponsors and families for this joyful occasion. They came from 82 parishes throughout the diocese.

The Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion is a highlight of the Church's year and the Archbishop was joined for the service by our Auxiliary Bishops, the Episcopal Vicar for Kent, the Vicar General and the Director of the Centre for Catholic Formation. The music was led by Canon Alan McLean and the diocesan choir and the altar servers were from the parish of Saint Bartholomew, Norbury.

Visit our Flickr page for more photos

During the Service
Inside the full Cathedral during the Rite of Election

Outside the Cathedral after the Service
Archbishop Peter speaks to the people after the Rite of Election

Catholic MP Visits Diocesan Vocations Centre

On Saturday 22nd February Julian Brazier, the MP for Canterbury, who is a practising Catholic visited the Vocations Centre in Whitstable. After meeting the residents and a number of young men taking part in a vocations weekend, Julian had a chance to be shown round the centre before joining the group for lunch. In the get-together that followed he spoke encouragingly of the importance of the priestly vocation and also of the things that had led him to enter politics. We were impressed by his knowledge of the writings of Blessed John Henry Newman and some of the Fathers of the Church and were grateful to him for taking questions and coming up with some suggestions for things to study to help broaden our cultural awareness and understanding of the issues facing society today.

Vocation Centre February 2014

Archbishop Peter wrote  a Pastoral Letter for the Season of Lent which was to be read on Sunday 2nd March 2014.

In it he writes that Lent is: 'an opportunity the Church gives us every year for conversion and renewal - conversion of mind, heart and action
so that we can better fulfil the two great commandments: “You must love the Lord your God with your whole heart, mind and strength... You must love your neighbour as yourself.” (Mk 12:30-31)'

Full text of the Pastoral Letter (.pdf available)


lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Father Joseph Whooley

who died on 1st March 2014

His body will be received
on Wednesday, 19th March, at 7:30 pm
at Saint Francis Church,
126 Week Street, Maidstone, ME14 1RH (01622 756217)
followed immediately by a vigil Mass

His Funeral Mass will be offered there
on Thursday, 20th March, at 12 noon

May he rest in peace


Our new Cardinal

© Mazur/

Pope Francis conferred the scarlet biretta on Cardinal Vincent at the Public Consistory in Saint Peter's Basilica on Saturday, 22nd February 2014. The Pope announced that his titular church would be the Church of the Most Holy Redeemer and Saint Alphonsus Liguori in the Via Merulana on the Esquiline Hill of Rome.

© Mazur/
Cardinal Vincent greets Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

After the Consistory, a festive lunch was held at the Venerable English College and then Cardinal Vincent attended the Visite di Calore at the Apostolic Palace, where the new Cardinals had the opportunity of meeting those who were in Rome to wish them well.

More photos of the Consistory on CCEW Flickr page


© Mazur/
Cardinal Designate Archbishop Vincent Nichols

On Saturday, 22nd February 2014, the Feast of the Chair of St Peter, Pope Francis will create nineteen new cardinals. Archbishop Vincent will be among those receiving the 'red hat' from the Pope.

The Consistory will take place in St Peter's Basilica from 9:55 am. And there on Sunday, 23rd February, the Pope will concelebrate Mass with the new cardinals at 8:50 am.

Archbishop Peter has travelled to Rome to represent the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales at the Consistory.

CCEW website is carrying the live broadcasts from CTV of the major ceremonies

Coverage on the CCEW web site

We congratulate our new cardinal and keep him in our prayers.

Father, we pray for Cardinal Vincent Nichols.
Through the power of your Holy Spirit,
give him wisdom and courage to do your will and to fulfil his role.
We ask this through Jesus Christ, Our Lord.

(posted 21-02-14)


Chemin Neuf Community welcomed at Lambeth Palace

On Thursday, 20th February 2014, Archbishop Peter and Archbishop Kevin were guests at a service in the chapel of Lambeth Palace at which  Archbishop Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury, welcomed four members of the international ecumenical foundation Chemin Neuf who will live at Lambeth Palace.

The community consists of a married Anglican couple, Ione and Alan Morley-Fletcher, a Lutheran training for ministry, Oliver Matri, and a Catholic consecrated sister, Ula Michlowicz.

Together they will share in the daily round of prayer that underpins the Archbishop's ministry, and further the ecumenical and international dimensions of his work.

Archbishop Kevin, Archbishop Peter, Father Laurent Fabre (founder of Chemin Neuf), Archbishop Justin Welby, Oliver Matri, Ula Michlowicz, and Ione and Alan Morley-Fletcher

News report on the Lambeth Palace web site

Visit the Chemin Neuf (UK) web site


lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Father Cyril Williams

who died on 8th February 2014

His body will be received
on Thursday, 6th March, at 4:00 pm
at Our Lady Immaculate Church, Whitstable CT5 2DE
(01227 272758)
where Mass will be offered at 7:30 pm

His Funeral Mass will be offered there
on Friday, 7th March, at 12 noon

May he rest in peace


Father Deodat installed as Parochial Administrator

On Sunday, 2nd February 2014, Bishop Patrick was welcomed at St Bartholomew's, Norbuy, where he installed Father Deodat Msahala as Parochial Administrator.   

(posted 19-02-14)


lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Father David Rhys

who died on 16th February 2014

His body will be received
on Sunday, 2nd March, at 3:30 pm
at Christ the King,
3 Princes Road, Eastbourne, Sussex BN23 6HT

His Funeral Mass will be held there
on Monday, 3rd March, at 12:15 pm

May he rest in peace

Clergy who wish to attend are asked to let
Father Barry Anderson know by Friday, 28th February.
Email: - Phone: 01323 760048 



Understanding CAFOD Day

On Saturday, 1st February 2014, at the Amigo Hall, CAFOD hosted a very well-attended day to give potential volunteers and supporters a deeper understanding of its vital work tackling poverty and injustice across the world.

All interested in supporting CAFOD were invited to hear about the scope of its mission as the official Catholic aid agency for England and Wales and how they could become involved

Visit CAFOD's web site

(posted 13-02-14)



Last month, Mr Clive Webster, Chief Executive of the Kent Catholic Schools' Partnership (KCSP), reported: 'As of 1st January 2014 two Catholic schools assumed academy status as part of the Kent Catholic Schools’ Partnership (KCSP). St Joseph’s Primary in Aylesham (Dover Deanery) and St Simon Stock Secondary in Maidstone (Maidstone Deanery) became the first voluntary-aided Catholic schools in Kent to become academies as part of an academy conversion schedule agreed with Kent County Council (KCC).

This should result in up to a further twelve academies as part of KCSP by the end of this school year. Academy status will be used to enable schools to better support themselves and one another in an ever strengthening Catholic context so that children and families experience continuously improving learning and faith outcomes.'

Today the Kent Catholic Schools' Partnership website has gone online. It contains information about the KCSP and links to newsletters that chart its progress.

Visit the Kent Catholic Schools' Partnership web site

(posted 12-02-14)


lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Father Alphonsus Brennan, OCarm

who died on 10th February 2014

His Funeral Mass will be held
at The Friars, Aylesford,
on Monday, 17th February, at 11:30 am

May he rest in peace

Obituary notice on The British Province of Carmelite Friars web site


Brand new school building for Autumn 2015

Groundbreaking Ceremony at Saint John Bosco College


On Friday, 7th February 2014, Archbishop Peter joined Mr Simon Uttley, Headteacher of St John Bosco College, Battersea, Father Martin Coyle SDB, Provincial of the Salesians, and Mr Richard Cook, Lendlease - the builders, to put the first spade in the ground at the site of a new state-of-the-art school building.

The college is due to transfer to the new building in the Autumn of 2015.

Archbishop Peter and Father Martin are helped by the Head Boy and Girl

More photos of the occasion on RCSouthwark's Flickr page

Visit the St John Bosco College web site


Ashford's Confirmation Group 2014

On Saturday, 8th February 2014, the Confirmation Group from St Teresa's parish, Ashford, (15 children aged 11/12 years) put on a show for parishioners, family and friends as part of their Confirmation programme. The show was a great success, well supported with singing and dancing, magic tricks, impersonations, musical events, a quiz and 'I'm a priest get me out of here' supported gamely by Fr Joe Feeley.

During their retreat at Worth Abbey, the candidates decided to raise money for charity. They chose the Demelza Children's Hospice (as as one of the candidates has a friend there) and Mary's Meals. They raised £880 which will be divided between the two charities.


New Learning Lab at Holy Ghost School, Balham

On Friday, 24th January 2014, Bishop Paul was welcomed at the Holy Ghost Primary School in Balham where he blessed and opened the school's new Learning Lab.

Visit the Holy Ghost School web site

(posted 10-02-14)


Day of Prayer for Victims of Human Trafficking

Feast of Saint Josephine Bakhita
8th February 2014


News report on CCEW web site


St George's Cathedral is looking to recruit a Premises and Events Manager to manage the use of the Cathedral and Amigo Hall. Please click on the image above for job description and details.


Clergy Appointments and News

Announced February 2014


The Archbishop has appointed three new Canons of the
Saint George's Cathedral Chapter:

 - Canon Edward Perera

 - Canon Luke Smith

 - Canon John Weatherill


Plymouth has its new Bishop

© Mazur/

On the afternoon of Tuesday, 28th January 2014, in the Cathedral Church of Saint Mary and Saint Boniface, Plymouth, Monsignor Mark O'Toole, a former private secretary of Cardinal Cormac and Rector of Allen Hall Seminary, was ordained to the episcopate and installed as the ninth Bishop of Plymouth.

Plymouth's outgoing bishop since 1986, Bishop Christopher Budd, presided at the Ordination and handed the pastoral staff to his successor.

Bishop Mark received the warmest of welcomes from the clergy and people of his diocese.

Archbishop Peter and Bishops Patrick and Paul were among the bishops present and laid hands on the head of the new bishop as part of the Ordination Rite.

© Mazur/

Archbishop Peter wore the pallium as Metropolitan of the Southwark or 'Southern' Province which includes Plymouth as well as the Arundel and Brighton and Portsmouth dioceses.

© Mazur/
'... and welcome, too, to the Southwark Province'

More photos of Bishop Mark's Episcopal Ordination on CCEW Flickr page

(posted 04-02-14)



New Advisers at the Centre for Catholic Formation

Two new Advisers have started at the CCF in Tooting Bec.

Dr Mark Nash (left) is the new Adviser for the Kent Area of the diocese.

Sebastian Morello (right) is the new Adviser for the South-West London Area; he is also the co-ordinator for the Rite of Election and the new Diocesan Diploma in Catechesis.

Marie Mann remains the Adviser for the South-East London Area and is also the Adviser on Disability issues.

Parishes, chaplaincies, deaneries and other organisations in the diocese should contact them at the Centre for advice and assistance in the areas of evangelization, catechesis and faith formation (see the link to the CCF on the right sidebar).

See the full team on the CCF web site


Franciscan Ordination at Erith

On Saturday, 25th January 2014, Archbishop Peter was welcomed at the Church of Our Lady of the Angels, Erith, where he presided at Mass and ordained Brother Martin Mikuskiewicz, OFMCap, to the priesthood. It was a great day of celebration for the Capuchin Province in Great Britain as well as the parish community.

Brother Martin’s family travelled from Poland and as far north as Dundee, and friends arrived from many places for the occasion, including a coach from the Institute of St Anselm in Cliftonville. It was a moment of great joy for Brother Martin and his family and friends.

He is very grateful for everyone’s support and prayers for him on that day and asks that we all keep him in our prayers as he embarks on his priestly ministry.

Archbishop Peter with Brother Martin and his parents and
Brother Paul Coleman, Provincial Minister

More photos of the Ordination on RCSouthwark's Flickr page

And yet more photos on the Capuchin Franciscans Facebook page


Missionaries of Saint Paul Mass of Thanksgiving

On the evening of Friday, 24th January 2014, the vigil of the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul, Cardinal-designate Vincent Nichols presided at a Mass of Thanksgiving with the Missionary Society of Saint Paul in Saint George's Cathedral.

The UK Mission of the Society started in 2000 and in that year Fr. Addison Okpeh joined the Archdiocese of Southwark. In 2002 Fr Eustace Durugbo (now the UK Mission Superior) and Fr Casmir Dike arrived to join Fr Addison in Southwark. Today the Society has nine priests in the diocese who have the care of six parishes: Beckenham Hill, Deptford, Gravesend, Norbiton, Nunhead and Stockwell.

Visit the MSP UK Mission web site


Cathedral Commissioning of
Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion

On Saturday, 25th January 2013, Bishop Paul commissioned a further 103 Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion from 31 parishes throughout the diocese.

The day included a talk on the Eucharist by Bishop Paul and an explanation of the role of the Extaordinary Minister by Mgr Matthew Dickens.

Mgr Matthew presided at a period of adoration before the Blessed Sacrament and gave Benediction.

Bishop Paul presided at Mass during which the Extraordinary Minsters were commissioned and received their certificates. Mgr Matthew and Mgr Gerry Ewing concelebrated at the Mass.

More photos of the Commissioning Day on RCSouthwark's Flickr page


Dedication of St Michael's, Pollards Hill

On the evening of Friday, 24th January 2014, Archbishop Peter was welcomed by Father Huebert Miranda MSFS, parish priest, and parishioners of Saint Michael's, Pollards Hill, where he dedicated the church and altar.

The church underwent extensive restoration last year which included the installation of a new permanent altar.

More photos of the Mass and Reception on RCSouthwark's Flickr page

Visit St Michael's parish web site


APF Certificate and Medal award at Margate

On Sunday, 26th January 2014, Mgr Canon James Cronin, National Director of Missio in England and Wales, presented Bernard McDermott with Missio's Certificate and Silver Medal in recognition and gratitude for 31 years service as parish organiser for the charity.

The presentation was made during Mass which Mgr Cronin concelebrated with Fr Luke Smith, parish priest of Ss Austin and Gregory with St Anne, Margate, assisted by Deacon Neville Gascoigne.

Bernard recalls being asked in 1983, by the parish priest at that time, if he would temporarily look after emptying and counting donations made by parishioners through the APF Red Boxes.

Mgr Cronin presents the certificate to Bernard

Mgr Cronin with Bernard

Bernard with Fr Luke, Mgr Cronin and Deacon Neville

Visit Missio's web site


SVP Society receives The Big Society Award

The Society of St Vincent de Paul has been recognised by the Prime Minister for the help it gives to the poor and disadvantaged through visits and practical assistance.

David Cameron has named the SVP Society as a recipient of the Big Society Award, which recognises individuals or groups for outstanding work in the community.

Demand for SVP care has increased recently. Last year the Society, working through 1,000 groups across the country, made 500,000 visits to 90,000 people, including the elderly, homeless and refugees. Its services include debt advice, soup runs, and the distribution of 'Vinnie Packs' to help those who are sleeping rough with hats, gloves and thermal blankets.

The SVP Society has at its heart the focus of Pope Francis on those who are on the peripheries of society.

The Society is a lay organisation initially formed in Paris in 1833 by Blessed Frédéric Ozanam and his companions and active in England and Wales since 1844. Last year it celebrated the 200th Anniversary of Blessed Frédéric Ozanam's birth.

Visit the SVP Society's web site


Bishop Richard: social media can banish January blues

Bishop Richard, the Bishops' Conference liaison bishop for Mental Health issues has urged people to use social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter to raise the spirits of those who suffer from 'seasonal mental stress'.

Recognising that many people suffer from anxiety about debt and loneliness after Christmas, he suggests that 'A simple loving gesture can help to alleviate their immediate symptoms.'

News release on the CCEW web site


World Day for Migrants and Refugees

Sunday, 19th January 2014 


Full text of Bishop Patrick's homily at the Mass with the Filipino community on the Feast or Santo Niño at St George's Cathedral  (.pdf available) 

News release on the CCEW web site 

Pope Francis' message for Migration Day

Photos of the Santo Niño Mass and celebrations in our Ethnic Communities section


Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity begins on Saturday, 18th January, and closes on the Feast of the Conversion of Saint Paul on Saturday, 25th January 2014.

We join our prayers with those of Pope Francis whose January prayer intention for evangelization is 'that Christians of diverse denominations may walk toward the unity desired by Christ'.

Resources for these eight days are available on the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland web site.

Please visit the CTBI resources page

'Ecumenical dialogue': extract from Pope Francis' Evangelii Gaudium (.pdf)


Clergy Appointments and News

Announced January 2014


The Archbishop has made the following appointments:

Father Davis Thomas Vadakkumpadan, CMI, as Parish Priest of St Thomas a Becket, Wandsworth.

He succeeds Father Anto Chittilippilly CMI, who is returning to India to take up a new appointment.

Father Ponder Paulinus Ngilangwa, SDS, a Salvatorian Priest from Tanzania, as the Assistant Priest at St. Patrick’s, Plumstead.

He succeeds Father Auson Kamugisha, SDS, who is to be Assistant Priest in Stevenage, Diocese of Westminster.


World Day for Migrants and Refugees

© Mazur/

This Sunday, 19th January 2014, is the World Day of Prayer for Migrants and Refugees. It is also the Feast of Santo Niño de Cebú - The Holy Child of Cebú - which holds a special place in the hearts of the Filipino community. Bishop Patrick will join their celebration of the feast at a Mass in Saint George's Cathedral at 3:00 pm.

He will pray with them for families and especially children who have been affected by typhoon Haiyan which struck the Philippines with devastating consequences just two months ago.

Plea for British and EU governments
to receive Syrian Refugees

In his homily, Bishop Patrick will also make this appeal:

'I appeal especially to Her Majesty’s Government who have responded financially to the plight of the two million refugees from the civil war in Syria to renew it’s efforts to bring about a peaceful solution in Syria but also in conjunction with other European Governments to find a way in which countries within the E.U. can receive at least some of these refugees.'

We continue to pray for those in the Philippines who are faced with rebuilding their lives and their homes, for peace in Syria - Sunday is also the World Day of Prayer for Peace, and for all migrants and refugees.

The full text of Bishop Patrick's homily will be published on Sunday.


lease pray for the repose of the soul of

Deacon Joseph Parsons

who died on 10th January 2014

His Funeral Mass will be held
on Thursday, 23rd January at 10:00 am
at St Aidan's Church, Coulsdon

May he rest in peace


The Magi bless Archbishop's House

Last night, 12th January 2014, at the close of Christmastime, some German children ('Sternsinger', literally star-singers) dressed as the Magi came to visit Archbishop Peter and give, in words and music, a traditional blessing of Archbishop’s House for the coming year.

Symbols are chalked onto the front door of the house: 20*C+M+B+14. This represents the words Christus Mansionem Benedicat (may Christ bless this house) between the numbers for the current year. The star represents the star that guided the Magi and the three crosses represent Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It is also sometimes claimed that the letters stand for the supposed names of the Magi: Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar. These symbols are often to be found on the front doors of houses and churches in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

The Sternsinger will be visiting different households in the German-speaking Catholic community of London in the coming week. They request an offering at each house (including Archbishop’s House!) towards the outreach to refugee children undertaken by the Pontifical children’s relief organisation in Germany.


Pope Francis names Archbishop Vincent
a Cardinal

© Mazur/
Pope Francis with Archbishop Vincent in April 2013

After the Angelus on Sunday, 12th January 2014, Pope Francis named 19 new cardinals who will receive 'the red hat' at a Consistory - an assembly of the cardinals and the pope - on 22nd February, The Feast of the Chair of Saint Peter.

Among them is Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the Archbishop of Westminster and President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.

Archbishop Peter has welcomed the announcement:

‘I was delighted to hear the news this morning that Archbishop Vincent Nichols, recently appointed by Pope Francis as a member of the Congregation of Bishops, will be created a Cardinal at the next Consistory in Rome on the 22nd February.

'On behalf of his brother Bishops and the Catholic community in England and Wales, I offer Archbishop Vincent our heartiest congratulations as the 11th Archbishop of Westminster to be made a Cardinal.

'We assure him of our prayers and ask for God’s blessing as he generously takes on these new responsibilities in assisting the Holy Father in the governance of the universal Church.’

Archbishop of Southwark
Vice-President of the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales
12th January 2014 

Full list of the new Cardinals on the Vatican Radio web site

Press release on the CCEW web site


Gratitude and Welcome as Jesuits hand care of Wimbledon parish to the diocese

The Society of Jesus has been serving the parish of The Sacred Heart for 136 years - ever since Edith Arendrup came to live in Wimbledon in 1877 and invited the Jesuits from Manresa House, Roehampton - the Jesuit noviciate since 1861 - to establish a Mass Centre in her house.

Until then, the few Catholics in the area would attend Mass at Manresa House. Her generosity led to the opening of the nave of The Sacred Heart church in 1887: the church was completed during the next fourteen years. Under the dedicated service of the Jesuit Fathers, the parish has grown to one of the largest in the country.

It was therefore an historic evening on Friday, 10th January 2014, when Archbishop Peter presided at Mass in the church during which Father Dermot Preston, S.J., the Provincial of the British Province of Jesuits, formally handed the care of the parish into the hands of the diocese.

In his homily the Archbishop expressed his 'deep gratitude and that of the whole Archdiocese for the wonderful ministry the Society of Jesus has fulfilled over the last 136 years in building up and developing such a vibrant and faith filled community here at the Sacred Heart. I am particularly grateful for the way you have engaged the laity of the parish, encouraging a real sense of co-responsibility amongst the priests and people, men and women.'

He inducted the new parish priest, Monsignor Nicholas Hudson and welcomed the new assistant priest, Father Samuel Davey.

Among the concelebrants were Bishop Howard, Bishop John Arnold (Auxiliary in Westminster), Father Dermot Preston SJ, Father Keith McMillan SJ (former parish priest), former parish clergy and priest friends of Fathers Nick and Sam.

Archbishop Peter inducts Father Nick as parish priest

Father Dermot Preston SJ
(a portrait of Edith Arendrup before the pulpit)

In the Sacristy after Mass: Father Sam, Father Nick, Father Dermot Preston SJ, Archbishop Peter, Bishop John Arnold and Bishop Howard

After the Mass a reception was held in the hall, during which the parishioners gave gifts to the Jesuit priests who had served the parish and welcomed their new priests.

Full text of Archbishop Peter's homily (.pdf available)

More photos of the occasion on RCSouthwark's Flickr page

Parish Press release with additional photos

More photos from John Stone Photography

The Sacred Heart parish web site


Clergy Appointments and News

Announced January 2014


Episcopal Vicar for Kent

In July last year Bishop John Hine celebrated his 75th birthday, and, in accordance with Canon Law, submitted his resignation from Office to the Holy Father. The resignation was accepted and will come into effect when a successor Bishop is announced. In the meantime Archbishop Peter has allowed Bishop John to relinquish his special responsibilities for the Kent and Medway Area of the diocese. Bishop John has kindly offered to look after a parish, and has been appointed to be parish priest of St Andrew, Tenterden.

It is anticipated that the Holy Father will appoint a new Auxiliary Bishop for the Diocese, although this may not be for some time, and it is likely that this new Bishop would be given responsibility for Kent and Medway. Until such time as this happens Archbishop Peter has decided to appoint a priest as the “Episcopal Vicar for Kent”, to have a special oversight for the area. The Episcopal Vicar has executive powers in respect of the pastoral care of the clergy and faithful of the Diocese who live within the Kent Episcopal Area, with the same powers in the parishes of the Kent Deaneries entrusted to a Vicar General, in accordance with Canon 479 §1 and §2.

His Grace has appointed Father Paul Mason to this office. In accordance with Canon 137 §1 and Canon 884 §1, Archbishop Peter has granted Fr Paul the faculty to administer the Sacrament of Confirmation in the parishes of the Kent Episcopal Area.

Father Paul will reside at
Bishop's Flat, The Hermitage, More Park, West Malling, Kent ME19 6HN
Telephone: 01732 845486; Fax 01732 847888;

Clergy Appointments and News

Announced January 2014


The Archbishop has made the following appointments:

Monsignor Nicholas Hudson as Parish Priest of The Sacred Heart, Wimbledon. He will be inducted by Archbishop Peter on 10th January 2014. The Society of Jesus will formally hand over the Parish into the care of the Diocese on that day.

Father Samuel Davey as Assistant Priest at The Sacred Heart, Wimbledon.

The Jesuit community will continue to reside in the Wimbledon parish.


Responding to Pope Francis’ call
to be a Church for the Poor in Southwark

Caritas Social Action Network is the social action arm of the Catholic Church in England and Wales.

It has launched a survey in the Southwark diocese to document all work that is being undertaken by parishes, schools and Catholic communities in the service of others.

Announcing the launch of the survey, Helen O’Brien, Chief Executive of CSAN said: 'There are some fantastic and inspirational projects being undertaken across Southwark, working with children and families living in poverty, refugees, homeless people, people with disabilities, travellers and older people.

'This survey aims to chart the work taking place across the Archdiocese. We hope that this questionnaire will be a stepping stone to raise the profile of the work our charities do and a way of encouraging more Catholics to assist and become actively involved in these projects.'

In support of the project, Archbishop Peter said: 'This questionnaire is a timely opportunity to reflect on Pope Francis’ call to be a Church for the poor. I would encourage all Catholic schools, parishes, charities and projects to complete the survey.

'We hope that this survey will enable us to bring our projects closer together so that as a Catholic community we can coordinate our efforts in tackling the poverty and deprivation that exists on our doorstep.'

The Southwark diocese will also be holding a Caritas Social Action Roadshow on 19th June 2014 to bring together those working on social justice and social action projects.

Please read the full text of the news release (.pdf)


Seminarians gather with Bishop Patrick at Woolwich

Southwark Seminarians joined Bishop Patrick, Fr Stephen Langridge and the Vocations Team, together with clergy and parishioners of St Peter the Apostle in Woolwich on Saturday, 4th January 2014, for Mass and a post Christmas and New Year gathering.

It provided an opportunity for the seminarians from Wonersh and The Venerable English College to catch up with each other and to receive encouragement from Bishop Patrick who told them how each of them is valued for offering himself for formation for the priesthood in our Diocese.

Please continue to keep our seminarians in your prayers and pray to the Lord of the harvest to send more labourers into the vineyard of his Church.


The Diocesan Chancery

Southwark's Diocesan Chancery has revised and added information to its page on this site.

The Chancery forms for Marriage, Reception into full communion with the Church and the Commissioning of Extra-ordinary Ministers of the Eucharist are now available for priests and deacons to download from this page.

Please click on the logo above to visit this page.


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