We have been advised to operate a booking system for Christmas Masses and, while it is not what I like doing, it means we won’t have to turn anyone away on the night/day if the numbers exceed what is safely allowed. We will begin taking bookings from Wednesday December 9th. Please phone 01424 421263 and we will do our best for everyone under the constraints in which we find ourselves.
Sadly, we will not be able to hold the usual 5pm children’s Mass with the Nativity play because the numbers would be impossible to manage. Instead, the church will be open on Christmas Eve from 1pm until 5pm and I invite young family groups to come and visit the crib in the church, family by family keeping the required distance between each family. There will be an opportunity for a brief prayer, to light a candle and take a photo. If the smaller children want to come dressed as angels or shepherds then that would be lovely.
The Masses on Christmas Eve December 24th will be at 6pm, 8pm and 10pm and on Christmas Day December 25th at 10am and 11.30am. The numbers attending Masses on Christmas Day are usually quite small so I would ask those who can to consider attending one of the those instead of Christmas Eve. For those who feel nervous of the Christmas crowds, it will suffice to attend Mass any day during the Christmas Octave which lasts until January 1st. On Christmas morning I will celebrate and record the dawn Mass privately for those who are confined to home and, being alone in the church, I will be allowed sing some of the Christmas hymns!
Congregational singing is not allowed but we will have Christmas music/hymns played at each of the Masses and throughout the afternoon on Christmas Eve.
To facilitate our spiritual preparation for Christmas I will be available for Confessions/Sacrament of Reconciliation after each Mass beginning December 12th until December 23rd, except when there is a funeral and also excluding December 18th and 19th when there will be no morning Mass.
Wishing you all the Love, Joy, Peace and Hope of the season.