England and Wales NEWS

Catholic Bishop's Conference

The website for the Catholic Bishop's Conference of England and Wales can be found by clicking on the image alongside. It provides up to date information on news, commentary and events.


UK Day of Prayer for the Holy Land

Cardinal Vincent Nichols in his message writes:


“As we are all aware, the situation in the Holy Land has not improved, with failed negotiations, increasing humanitarian distress and a rising death toll. As Lent begins, I would like to urge that we continue our efforts, not least in prayer. So, I ask that, on Friday 8 March, there is a special focus of prayer for the Holy Land. This could take the form of a dedicated time of prayer, perhaps before the Blessed Sacrament, for peace in the Holy Land. It could be as simple as making any regular Lenten devotions you may be having on that day for this intention." He asks priests to make their “parishioners aware and encourage them to make a special effort to take part.”


For the peace of Jerusalem, (let us) pray.


The Archdiocese joined with global voices on this day of prayer and offered Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament starting at 4pm. Archbishop Malcolm then offered Holy Mass at 5pm for the intention of peace in the Holy Land.


Here at St. Peter and St. Michael, Our Friday morning Mass at 09.30 was offered for Peace in the Holy Land and we followed Mass with Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament to offer our own reflections between 10.00 and 10.30.

Visit from Fr Gabriel, Parish Priest at Holy Family in Gaza - Sunday 28 April 

Fr Gabriel Romanelli, the parish priest of Holy Family Parish, Gaza, has accepted an invitation from the Catholic Bishops to visit the UK at the end of April. During the visit, Fr Gabriel will meet the Bishops to thank them for their continued support; he will speak to MPs and Lords in Parliament before a brief visit to Glasgow. He will spend a few days in English Martyrs parish, Litherland, before returning to the Holy Land. On Sunday, 28 April, he will join the parish for Mass at 10.30; Bishop Tom Neylon will be the principal celebrant and Knights & Dames of the Holy Sepulchre will also attend. All are welcome.


Oasis of Silence Retreats

St Hilda's Priory, Whitby, North Yorkshire, are hosting a contemplative retreat programme called Oasis of Silence. 


"The Oasis of Silence programme at St. Hilda´s Priory offers space and stillness to seek God with loving awareness in the present moment. It offers a variety of opportunities to make retreats of different lengths in a peaceful and welcoming environment, away from our busy everyday lives. It is for everyone seeking stillness and silence and who is interested in getting to know or to deepening the practice of contemplative prayer."


They are offering 4 day or 10 day courses, and a course over Lent. For more information, see the leaflet attached below.

World Communications Day 2023

Please find below a copy of the Catholic Bishops of England and Wales message about World Communications Day which this year is on Sunday 21st May.

Prayer card for the coronation of King Charles


The Bishops’ Conference have prepared a prayer card for the coronation of King Charles III, it can be viewed and downloaded here: https://www.cbcew.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2023/04/prayer-card-Coronation-of-King-Charles-V2.pdf or via the embedded page shown below.



Information from the Conference of Catholic Bishops of England and Wales.


The Bishops recognise the complexity of the causes, both short and long-term, that bring about the crisis now affecting so many. 


A briefing paper from the Bishops' Conference Department for Social Justice on the cost of living crisis. The briefing looks at the current context and invites a response based on the key principles of Catholic Social Teaching. The briefing can be read here.

HM Queen Elizabeth II


The Bishops' Conference  have a prayers and psalms on their website: Prayers for the Repose of the Soul of HM Queen Elizabeth II - Catholic Bishops' Conference (cbcew.org.uk)


In Memoriam

In her official role as ‘Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England’, the Queen, through her words and actions, always showed herself to be a woman of a deep Christian faith.


Throughout her reign Queen Elizabeth II also ensured a relationship of mutual respect between the Church of England and the Catholic Church. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was an extraordinary woman who will not be forgotten by her people. May she rest in peace.


Bishop Egan

Evangelii Gaudium (Home Mission): Sunday, 18 September 2022

The Third Sunday in September, formerly called Home Mission Sunday, is now Evangelii Gaudium Sunday.

Named after Pope Francis’ first (solo) Apostolic Exhortation on the Joy of the Gospel, the day offers the Catholic community in England and Wales the opportunity to celebrate the beauty of our faith and our commitment to witness to the fullness of life in Christ. Fr Jan Nowotnik, Director of Mission at the Bishops’ Conference, tells us more about the day (below) and how you can support this important work. Evangelii Gaudium Sunday will be celebrated in Catholic parishes throughout England and Wales on Sunday, 18 September 2022.

Marriage Law Changes

In April 2022 Parliament passed legislation (Marriage and Civil Partnership (Minimum Age) Act 2022) declaring that Marriage and Civil Partnerships for those under 18 years of age is unlawful.  However, the Act requires Regulations to put that ban into effect. Those regulations have not been published yet, and there is no indication when they will be. It is strongly advised that clergy do not organise Marriages for under 18’s in case they fall foul of the law on the wedding day. Explanatory notes are attached for information.