St Werburgh's Roman Catholic Parish, Chester

Parish Newsletter




Procession: Matthew 21, 1-11; Isaiah 50, 4-7; Psalm 21; Philippians 2, 6-11; Matthew 26,14 – 27,66

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Kathleen and Ray Wilbraham (Birthday Remembrances)


Monday 6th April: Monday of Holy Week: Isaiah 42, 1-7; Psalm 26; John 12, 1-11

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Piotr Voronko (L.D. Belarus)


Tuesday 7th April: Tuesday of Holy Week: Isaiah 49, 1-6; Psalm 70; John 13, 21-38

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Gregory Stuart Phillips (L.D.)


 Wednesday 8th April: Wednesday of Holy Week: Isaiah 50, 4-9; Psalm 68; Matthew 26, 14-25

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: James Donovan (L.D.)

1.20 pm: Blacon: Funeral Service for Bridget (Bridie) Williams, late of Curzon House NH


Thursday 9th April: Maundy Thursday: Evening Mass of the Lord’s Supper

Exodus 12, 1-14; Psalm 115; I Corinthians 11, 23-26; John 13, 1-15

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Barbara Galvin (L.D. Calgary, Alberta)


Friday 10th April: Good Friday: Celebration of the Lord’s Passion

Isaiah 52,13 – 53,12; Psalm 30; Hebrews 4,14 – 5,9; John 18,1 – 19,42


Saturday 11th April: Holy Saturday: Easter Vigil and First Mass of Easter

Genesis 1,1 – 2,2; Psalm 103; Genesis 22, 1-8; Psalm 15; Exodus 14,15 – 15,1; Psalm Exodus 15; Isaiah 54, 5-14; Psalm 29; Isaiah 55, 1-11; Psalm Isaiah 12; Baruch 3,9 – 4,4; Psalm 18;

Ezekiel 36, 16-28; Psalm 41; Romans 6, 3-11; Psalm 117; Matthew 28, 1-10

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today: Mae Kay

Fr Paul’s Private Midnight Mass Intention:  Matthew Robinson



Acts 10, 34-43; Psalm 117; Colossians 3, 1-4; John 20, 1-9

Fr Paul’s Private Mass Intention today (Morning): Ken Lawley and Kathleen Hargreaves

Evening: Private Intention (JA)


Prayer Intentions

Your prayers are asked for the following who are sick: Pauline Hackett, Kerry Woodbury, Tina Johnson, Laura Chadwick, Elisabeth, Stuart Clark, Keith Hayes, Sheila Winder, James Catterson, Joe and Ruth O’Kane, Henri Diacono, Garth Stocking and Kevin Maguire; and for all the sick of the Parish; and for those who have died recently, especially Kevin Smyth, Bridget (Bridie) Williams, Barbara Galvin, James Donovan and Patrick Elliott; and for those whose anniversaries occur about this time: Winifred Boucke, Eddie Ronayne, John Henry Allman, Honora Short, Herbert Kerrison, Jean Hogan, Peter Hoban, Beryl Whittaker, James Daley, Kenneth Lawley, Peter Bullen, Winifred Tonks, George Bolland, Leo Maguire, Bernard Carr and Emiliana Manfredi-Lewis. May They All Rest in Peace.


Parish events

 St Werburgh’s Church Closed

In common with all public buildings and places where people gather together, St Werburgh’s has had to be closed for the duration of this Coronavirus outbreak. We all regret this hugely, the first time in our history we have needed to close our church: but we also recognise we must play our part in preventing the spread of this killer virus, by avoiding gathering together and, wherever possible, staying in our own homes. We know that, both as individuals and as a community, we will co-operate to the full in these instructions. The sooner we get on top of this infection, the sooner normal life can return, and our Churches once again be open.


Holy Week

The Pope and all our Bishops have decided that Easter cannot be postponed until after this Coronavirus outbreak is ended, and so we must celebrate each and every day of this holiest week in our life together as reverently and meaningfully as we can. Sadly, the church cannot be open and there can be no public gatherings. But FP will celebrate each day, as fully as possible in the absence of a congregation. Palm Sunday tomorrow: no palms at this stage, of course, because of the risk of infectivity. But we have them all ready and waiting, for the happy day this is all over and they can be blessed and distributed. Thursday Evening, Maundy Thursday, I will say the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at our normal time, 7.30 pm, and invite you to join in prayer or live streaming one of the many excellent Masses available on-line. I will then watch myself in front of the Blessed Sacrament until midnight, so do join me in prayer at any time if you can, finishing with Compline, as ever at 11.55 pm. Good Friday will be the Liturgy of the Passion at 3.00 pm: again, a wonderful opportunity to join in with many of the amazing live streamed Liturgies from our own Cathedral or dozens of other Cathedrals and churches all over the world. The Easter Vigil will be celebrated here at 8.30 pm, again, alas, privately, with another Private Mass at Midnight, as usual. Easter Morning Mass at 10.45 am, with a second one at 6.00 pm, again on my own, but I know you are with me in prayer. And then, after Evening Mass on Easter Sunday…


On-Line Catholic Resources at our Cathedral

We have compiled as complete a list as we can of on-line resources. Our own Cathedral in Shrewsbury has many excellent ways of keeping in touch with the church, including live streaming of Mass. The website which takes you straight through is:


Welsh Railways Trip: All Full Now!

Wednesday 6th May: All 48 places have now been taken. At the moment it is still going ahead, but we will almost certainly need to make a decision this coming week, depending on the Railway. If we need to postpone, we will let you know via this Newsletter immediately. No cheques or cash have been banked.


Keeping in Touch during this Period

Newsletters and Information Sheets will be available two ways, as usual: hard copies, in the Newsletter Box on the Front Door of the Church; and on the website, as you’ve always done. Log on to: On the home page, you will see two links: one takes you to all the official statements that have come out from Bishop Mark, the Bishops’ Conference of England & Wales, and our own Information Sheet; the other takes you to the increasingly irritating Parish Priest’s Daily Blog. You log on at your peril…


CAFOD Lent Fast Day Envelopes

They’re in the Newsletter Box on the Front Door of Church: if you can make your contribution, CAFOD will be very grateful, and you can pop them back through the Parish House Letter Box.


That Perennial Question, Asked Every Year…

“So, Father, when exactly does Lent end?” You know the answer, my children, and just try it on asking it again and again. Sunday Evening, 7.05 pm. OK? If ends then for me, it flaming does for you too. And I mean that lovingly and pastorally, of course. This year, with fewer cars on the road, an ideal time to hear one of the great Sounds of Old Chester, Easter Evening, 7.05 on the dot. Gather in Grosvenor Park, a safe six feet apart and you will hear that most beautiful of sounds: Clink, clink, clink, glug, glug, fizzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.


Parish Council Meeting Last Wednesday

We had a very useful “Virtual Meeting” last Wednesday at 7.00 pm. I know trendy parishes now have skype and conferencing facilities, but when was St Werburgh’s ever trendy? So we all stood in the front garden, six feet apart, and shouted at each other. What was wrong with that?


Collection Money During this Emergency

Probably the last thing on anyone’s mind at the moment; but, like all Parishes, we will take a huge hit during this emergency in terms of our income. If you make your contribution by Standing Order, you can have a ‘Smug Very’ badge. If you use envelopes, please keep using them and let us have them when convenient, even after this is all over. If you make a cash contribution, please continue to put it in your jam jar on the mantle-piece and let’s have it when this is over. If you’re a posh kid, you could always send us a cheque. Thanks, everybody!


First Holy Communion Masses in May

Still going ahead at present but watch this space!


Self-Isolating Contact List

The joint List we are operating between the Parish and the SVP seems to be working well. If you know of anyone – including you yourself – who would like to go on the “Please Contact” list, do let us know. Alternatively, if you’re willing to go on the “Willing to Contact” List, we’d love to hear from you.


Photo of the Week: Pantasaph

Our own beautiful Franciscan Monastery just down the road. Well worth a visit if you haven’t been recently, the church, the grounds, the cemetery.