The current parish of St. Ignatius was set up in an era not long after Catholic emancipation, which saw rapid social change driven by industrial growth, urbanisation and immigration. Soon after Herbert Vaughan became Archbishop of Westminster in 1892 he was petitioned by nearly 300 people for a parish to be set up in the Stamford Hill area, where the population had greatly increased since the building of the suburban railways between 1871 and 1891. In response, Cardinal Vaughan invited the Society of Jesus (Jesuits) to open a parish, an elementary (primary) school and a secondary school for boys. For the Jesuits, this was a missionary endeavour – the development of a pastoral and social outreach to new communities with many needs and the eventual construction of community, church and school buildings on a landmark site. The first Mass was celebrated in Morecambe Lodge, a large house on the site of the present waste land. The following year, Burleigh House, the villa next door, was also bought. It was used to house the Jesuit community until the present presbytery opened in 1928.
A chapel was constructed out of stables, the coach house and stable yard of Morecambe Lodge, but soon it became clear that a proper church was needed. Largely for financial reasons, St Ignatius church was built in two stages. The first part, which included the sanctuary, was opened in 1903 and the building was completed in 1911.
The architect was Benedict Williamson, who was responsible for several other churches in the south-east of England. He said the church was designed in the spirit of the early Middle Ages, but with a view to the needs of the 20th century. The old churches of Spain, France and Belgium had a considerable influence on Williamson and the exterior of the church is faced in Belgium bricks similar to those used in the old churches of Bruges.
The interior embellishments of the church were not completed until 1925. There is some fine mosaic work to be seen in the Stations of the Cross, the Sanctuary, the Sacred Heart chapel and the Lady chapel. The chapel of St Joseph at the back of the church is dedicated to the men of the parish who died in the First World War and their names are inscribed on the front of the altar. The High Altar and the communion rails are also outstanding features of the church.
St Ignatius College opened in Morecambe Lodge in September 1894, but soon needed more space. Four classrooms were built at the end of the playground, but it was not until 1909 that the college was adequately housed in the new building facing the High Road. By the 1960’s it needed more room and it moved to Enfield in 1968, leaving behind the present St Ignatius Primary School, now entrusted to the diocese.
The primary school began life in the building, now dedicated to St Ann Line, in 1901, but when the college moved it took over one of its buildings (dedicated to St Alexander Briant) and a third building (dedicated to St Edmund Campion) was added.
We are grateful to the dedication of so many parishioners who came before us and who have provided us with such a wonderful church in which we give glory to God. We now take up the challenge of renewing the fabric of this heritage and of continually renewing the faith of this community of believers.
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Parish Council: This
meets every 3rd Sunday at 4.30pm. The Parish Council advises the Parish
Priest on major decisions relating to the parish. It also receives
reports on all parish activities. All are welcome to these
meetings. Council Chair: Inno Amad, Vice Chair: Kathy Mulvey, Secretary: Sr. Eugenia Geraghty
Annual General Meeting of the parish meets each year in March. It
elects officers for the following year, receives the Parish Priest’s
report and the accounts of the previous year. See the Newsletter for
exact date each year.
Finance Committee: This
committee assists the Parish Priest in all matters relating to parish
finance. It meets once a month and sets the parish budget.
Planned Giving/Gift Aid: The
coordinator is responsible for the planned-giving scheme of the parish
and for reclaiming Gift Aid. Contact: Sr. Theresa Ryden 0208 800 2121
Parish Database: A database of parishioners is kept by the Parish Office.
Notice Boards: There
are a number of notice boards at the back of the Church providing
information on mass times and other liturgies, parish news, pastoral
services and social outreach activity. If you want a notice displayed,
please contact the Sacristan.
Keeping the Church Open: A
rota of volunteers enables the church to be kept open from 7.00 am to
6.15 pm, Monday-Saturday. If the church is closed, it is usually
because sufficient numbers to assist in this service are not available.
Please contact Fr Peter if you can sit-in on a regular basis, or on an
is a vibrant tradition of volunteering to help with the work of the
Parish, and this provides an excellent way of getting to know people as
well as making a real contribution to Parish Life. There are volunteer
opportunities with most of the groups in the parish, and we always
need help with daily Parish work, such as church sitting, door duty in
the Presbytery, etc.
Parish Safeguarding Coordinator: Jo
McNicholas is the parish Safeguarding Coordinator. It is the
parish’s policy to provide a safe environment in which all children and vulnerable adults may
participate fully in every aspect of their Church life. Jo McNicholas,
together with the coordinators of groups, will make sure that all of
those who work with children and vulnerable adults have a police check and that appropriate
references have been taken up. Contact: Jo McNicholas on (020) 8800
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Infant and Child Baptism (up to 7 years of age): A four part preparation course is required for the baptism of a couple's first child or if it has been more than 2 years since last attending the course. Call to
arrange an interview and to sign up. Some parents come during
pregnancy as life gets very busy after birth. Babies are baptised
during a Sunday Mass or at a special ceremony on a Sunday afternoon. Contact: Rosemary Byrne 0208 800 2202
Adults and children for Baptism and/or entry into the Church: The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA)and the Christian Initiation of Children of Catechetical Age (CICCA) meets weekly on Saturdays in the Presbytery. If
you are interested in joining the Catholic Church, or having your child (age 7 or older) baptised, then contact Rosemary Byrne who will explain the process of initiation. Baptism and reception into the Church for adults and children normally take place at the Easter Vigil Mass (the Saturday evening before Easter.) Contact: Rosemary Byrne 0208 800 2202
First Communion and Reconciliation: Children should be 7 years of age or older before September and entering year 3 or over. Registration occurs in early September for the coming year. Contact: Rosemary Byrne 0208 800 2202
Confirmation: Candidates for Confirmation should be 14 years of age or older and entering year 10 or over in September. Registration occurs in September for the coming year. Contact: Rosemary Byrne 0208 800 2202
you wish to marry in St Ignatius Church, please see one of the priests
at least six months before your intended wedding day. This time is
essential to complete the necessary preparation. Contact: Information
is available from any of the priests.
Priesthood and Religious Life: If
you wish to discuss your own vocation in life, or are interested in the
priesthood or religious life, please see any one of the clergy or a
member of a religious community.
Permanent Deacons: The
diocese now has a programme for the training of lay men for the
permanent deaconate. Candidates will be already working
collaboratively with priests and lay-people in the local church and
will be men of faith and prayer with a desire to serve others for the
sake of God’s Kingdom. They must be prepared to undertake a 3-year
course of formation and to make a life-long commitment, once called to
ordination as Deacon. The deaconate is open to single men over 35 and
married men over 40. Contact: Diocesan coordinator, Fr Pat Browne.
Tel: (020) 7834 6965.
Sacrament of the sick: Please
notify one of the priests if you or someone known to you is sick or
housebound, and would appreciate a visit from a priest. Do not wait
until the sickness is advanced! Similarly Holy Communion can be brought
to anyone unable to come to church for an extended period.
someone goes into hospital, please let the priests know and they will
inform the hospital chaplain. Due to new legislation, chaplains no
longer have access to records of the religion of the patient. It is
important, therefore, that the family or patient let us know so that
they can receive the spiritual care they need.
are by arrangement. Please let the parish clergy know of anyone who
has died, then the Funeral Directors will make the arrangements with
the church for the funeral Mass or service.
Admissions Policy for Catholic Schools: Our
Catholic schools are very popular and consequently over-subscribed,
especially at the Secondary level. In order to facilitate the
selection process among applicants, school governors take into
consideration parents’ active participation in parish life as a helpful criterion for assessing their Catholic commitment.
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- To promote more involvement of children and youth
- To promote the formation, education, and training of those involved in the Liturgy
- To target age ranges for individual celebrations
Eucharistic Ministers: This
group serves the parish by assisting with Holy Communion at Mass and
bringing the Blessed Sacrament to the sick and housebound. We also
share periodic retreats and days of recollection. Ministers are
recommissioned at a special Mass each year. Contact: Clara Akainyah
(020) 8809 3568.
try to be “ministers of the Word” proclaiming the scripture passages
appointed for each Mass as well as deepening our own knowledge of the
Bible through personal prayer and days of recollection. There are
occasional training sessions to help in reflecting on the Word and
public speaking. Contact: Marj McDaid and Tony Wren (020) 7923 4929.
Guild of St Stephen:Altar
Serving is a privilege and a wonderful opportunity - and all youth in
the Parish are invited to get involved. The parish's Guild was
affiliated to the Archconfraternity of St. Stephen on 1 January 1945
and has been encouraging reverence, regularity and understanding among
altar servers ever since. Membership is open to men and women, boys and
girls, who normally have made their First Holy Communion and wish to
serve God and His Church at the Altar. Children who would like to start
serving begin a period of six months probation, normally after making
their First Holy Communion, before being enrolled into the Guild. The
Guild also offers opportunities to network with altar servers from
other parishes, and pilgrimages are held (e.g. to Rome) for altar
servers and their families.Contact: The Parish Priest on (020) 8800-2121.
Choirs at St Ignatius: Please contact the Director of Music, Ms Ann Carey (077) 93751261 if you are interested in any of the choirs.
St Ignatius Parish Choir: A
dedicated and competent choir has been a part of St Ignatius from the
beginnings of the parish. The fact that we have a fine organ and the
existence of a choir library going back many decades shows the
enthusiasm and seriousness of our predecessors for a high standard of
liturgical music. We sing at the 11.30am Mass most Sundays and on all
the major Holy Days. As well as leading the congregational singing, we
prepare plainsong selections, occasional motets and short choral items
in four-part harmony. To join you need a good voice, enthusiasm and
commitment. You do not need to read music and there are no auditions.
Contact: Ann Carey (077) 93751261.
Junior and Youth Choirs: Since
1997 there has been a Junior Choir at St Ignatius, and there is now
also a Youth Choir. These groups practice on Fridays and sing at the
10am Mass on Sundays, as well as for some special events. Anyone
between the ages of 7 and 10 can apply to join the Junior Choir, and
anyone between the ages of 11 and 16 can apply to join the youth choir
- but you have to like singing! Entrance to both choirs is by
audition. Contact: Ann Carey (020) 8801 9878.
The St Ignatius Caribbean Choir: The
Caribbean Choir was started in 1985 and its membership has increased
over the years. We are from the Caribbean, Africa, Asia and Europe and
new members are always welcome (especially men!). The mission of the
Choir is "evangelisation through the music ministry". We lead the
singing at the 11.30am Mass on the third Sunday of every month. We also
sing at other venues and at weddings. Rehearsals are in the Presbytery
every Wednesday night (8- 10 pm) so come and join us and let us sing
the Lord's praise! Contact: Maxine Sullivan 07956 815018.
Africa Society Choir: The
Africa Choir assists in the celebration of Mass by providing an African liturgical flavour. We sing at the 7pm Mass on the first Sundays of the
month and on special occasions. Contact: Pat Enebli (020) 8802 7443.
Latin American Choir: There is a Latin American Choir that sings at the Spanish Mass at 4.30pm on Sundays. Contact: Alexander González SJ (020) 8442-5253.
Polish Choir: There is a Polish Choir
that sings at the Polish Mass at 7.30pm on Sundays. Contact: Fr Adam Tomasqewski
St Ignatius Day Celebrations: The
Parish Council organises the patronal feast of the parish on the Sunday
nearest to 31st July. At the special Mass on that day many of our
parish groups participate, and the Mass concludes with a procession of
national flags. The Mass is followed by a fiesta where we can enjoy
many different foods. Contact: Inno Amadi
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- To prepare people for the reception of the sacraments
- To develop strategies for the follow-up of our catechetical programmes.
Contact: Rosemary Byrne is the co-ordinator for the extensive catechetical programmes of
the parish. Anyone who wishes to share their faith with the adults or children of the parish and are confirmed Catholics are welcome to apply to join our group of dedicated catechists. All catechists must be CRB certified to work with children and vulnerable adults. Teens are welcome to apply to volunteer as Catechist Aides. Contact Rosemary Tuesday-Friday in the Presbytery and on weekends by appointment only. Tel: (020) 8800 2202 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
First Communion Catechists: This
group assists parents with the preparation of their children for First
Holy Communion. The programme involves monthly meetings of the children
and their parents and a corresponding Mass celebrating the topic for the month.
Sunday School Catechists: These
are teachers of the faith for children attending non-Catholic schools.
The Sunday School meets most Sundays in term time after the 10am Mass.
Confirmation Catechists: This group helps prepare our young adults for the completion of initiation into the Catholic Church by sharing their own faith. Confirmation classes meet monthly and have several weekend activities such as retreats, special Masses, and outings.
RCIA Catechists: The
“Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults” helps prepare adults and older
children for baptism or reception into the Catholic Church.
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Altar Servers: Please see Guild of St. Stephen in the Liturgy section.
Youth Choir: Please see the Junior and Youth Choir in the Liturgy section.
Scouts and Guides: These
well-established organisations offer young people varied and
well-supervised programmes for learning new skills, developing
initiative, and making friends. Open to all!
- 9th Tottenham Cubs: (age 8 to 10½) meet Mondays in the School Hall 6.30-8pm. Leader: Judith Harris (020) 8801 3097.
- 9th Tottenham Scouts: (age 10+) meet Mondays in the School Hall 7.30-9.30pm. Leader: Lawrence Crawley (020) 8884 4412.
- 9th South Tottenham Brownie Pack: (age 7-10) meet Wednesdays in the School Hall, 6.00-7.30pm. Leader: Kathleen Mulvey (020) 8806 1712.
- 9th South Tottenham Guide Unit: (age 10-15) meets Wednesdays in the Presbytery, 7.30-9pm. Captain: Kathleen Mulvey (020) 8806 1712<
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- To develop our Social Outreach office
- To coordinate pastoral care of the sick
- To make assistance to immigrants a priority
- To provide support for families
Book of the Sick: This
is kept by the Our Lady altar and contains the names of all the sick of
the parish. These are prayed for by the rosary group every day.
Those more seriously sick are prayed for in the parish newsletter.
Please let either Fr Peter know of anyone to be added to
these lists on (020) 8800 2121.
St Ignatius North London Citizens Group: The
parish is a member of the North London Citizens chapter,
a diverse alliance of active citizens and community leaders organising
for change and committed to action for the common good. It consists of
faith groups, schools, student organisations, union branches and
charities across 5 North London boroughs. Recent key campaigns have
included the Living Wage, Strangers into Citizens, Affordable Housing,
and CitySafe. Along with 7 other chapters throughout London, North London Citizens is a member of Citizens UK. Contact: Fr
Peter Randall SJ 0208 800 2121
Justice and Peace Group: This
group began over twenty years ago. It meets with the aim of reflecting
on the social teaching of the church and raising awareness among
parishioners of social issues both at home and abroad. The Group is
also involved in the promotion of Fair Trade, and Fair Trade goods are
on sale in the church on the last Sunday of the month. Meetings are on
the first Sunday of the month at 4 pm. New members are welcome!
Contact: Sr Ellen (020) 8800 4623.
St Ignatius Housing Association: The
Association provides housing and support for single homeless persons up
to retirement age. A management committee is responsible for its
affairs and its five full-time staff. It currently provides
accommodation for 49 homeless people. Contact: Richard Taylor (020)
Soup Run: For
20 years this group has provided tea and sandwiches to the homeless in
the Strand area. Consisting of teams of sandwich-makers, drivers and
helpers on site, the group also collects clothing and organises a
Christmas dinner each year for the needy. The soup run takes place
every Saturday leaving the Presbytery at 8 pm. Contact: Dressman
Kousin-Ezewu (079 5866 2044).
Night Shelter: Sixteen
Hackney churches participate to provide food and shelter for homeless
people each night of the week from January to March. This work depends
on a committed team of organisers and helpers. Even limited assistance
is appreciated. In the past, St Ignatius Primary School has provided
much needed items for the homeless such as toothpaste etc. Contact:
Richard Taylor (020) 8800 5030.
Annual Dinner for the Homeless: Each year the parish organizes a dinner for the homeless on a Saturday in January. Contact: Pauline Daly (020) 8808 1268
The Wednesday Club: This
thriving club for “senior citizens” (and others!) meets each Wednesday
at 2.30pm to share friendship, tea, conversation and bingo. We have a
Thanksgiving Mass each year, bring-and-buy sales, two summer outings, a
Christmas Dinner and a Healing Mass in October. Newcomers are welcome!
Contact: Bridie O'Mahoney.
Al Anon: This
is a self-supporting group for people with a member of the family who
is having alcohol problems. It meets every Monday in the Presbytery at
Narcotics Anon: This is a self-supporting group for people with a drug related problem. It meets in the presbytery every Tuesday at 7.30pm
SPUC (Society for the Protection of Unborn Children): The
Society seeks to defend the rights of the vulnerable through
influencing UK law, public policy and opinion. It also gives practical
support to individuals. There is a regular Pro-Life newspaper and an
annual White Flower Appeal to raise public awareness of life and death
Latin-American Chaplaincy: A
large Spanish-speaking community has been an active part of our parish
life for a number of years. The church provides facilities for a
Spanish Mass at 4.30pm on Sunday and the Presbytery offers a welcome to
its ancillary groups. The chaplaincy supplies its own priests who, in
addition to Mass, help in all aspects of sacramental preparation.
Contact: Fr Carlos
Knights of St Columba: Dating
from the First World War, this men’s association is devoted to the
spiritual growth of its members and to charitable works. Its strong
emphasis on service keeps it close to the chivalric ideals of yore
while a practical application of time and skills keeps the members
fully involved in parish life. Contact: Hillary Odu-Obi (020) 8800 2792
Ghanaian Catholic Association: There
is an active parish branch of this national chaplaincy. Meetings are
every second Sunday of the month after the 11.30am Mass. The aim of
the Association is to bring Ghanaians together in a social context, to
discuss matters of common interest and to assist the work of the Church
in a variety of ways. Contact: Osei Boateng (020) 8885 5119.
Nigerian Catholic Association: This
association was formed to bring Nigerians together within the
framework of the parish and to participate actively with other
communities of St Ignatius parish, promoting our catholic values and
national heritage. We meet on the last Sunday of the month in the
parish Old Refectory after the 11.30 Mass. Contact: Attracta Asika
Sponsored Walk: The
sponsored walk (10 miles along the River Lea) occurs each year on the
last Sunday in April. The event raises money for charities close to the hearts of parishioners. Recent sums have topped £10,000 and have helped
such causes as Jesuit Missions, Macmillan Nurses, St Ann’s Hospital
Stroke Unit, local Mental Health projects, Diabetes UK and the Sickle
Cell Society. Contact: Pauline Daly: (020) 8808 1268.
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build on parish prayer experiences, especially from the perspective of
Ignatian spirituality: Week of Guided Prayer, Novena of Grace, and Away
Days for Catechists, Eucharistic Ministers and Readers
- Possible future expansion: 19th Annotation Retreats and Away Day Retreats for the parish.
Apostleship of Prayer: The mission of the Apostleship of Prayer is to encourage Christians to make a daily offering of themselves to the Lord for the coming of God's Kingdom and for the Holy Father's monthly intentions. This habit of prayer develops a Eucharistic spirituality of solidarity with the Body of Christ and loving service to others. Nourishing this spiritual program is the love of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Leaflets are available at the back of the Church. More information at http://www.apostleshipofprayer.org/.
Novena of Grace to St Francis Xavier: Held in the parish each year from 4 – 12 March, it includes a special
Mass each evening with a themed homily. The special novena prayer is
Week of Guided Prayer: This
annual event provides an opportunity for members of the parish to meet
daily with a trained prayer guide while making a retreat in daily life.
The Well: Home
to our parish community of Servite Sisters, “The Well” (90, Suffolk
Road) is a house of hospitality and welcome for those looking for
refreshment on their spiritual journey. Set in lovely grounds behind
the old Convent in St Ann’s Road, the house provides a place of rest or
meeting for individuals and groups. Spiritual guidance is available.
Contact: Sr Eugenia (020) 8211 0851
Mass for Religious: Each
year, on the feast of the Presentation of the Lord (2nd February) there
is a Mass for all the religious of the parish to thank God for their
New Year’s Eve Mass: We
have the tradition of seeing in the New Year with a Mass at Midnight.
This is a very popular Mass and a wonderful way of thanking God for the
graces of the year past and looking forward to the year to come.
Parish Pilgrimages: Annual
pilgrimages to Lourdes, Fatima, Knock, Aylesford and other destinations
are organised by groups and individuals from the parish. Information is
always available on the notice board and in the newsletter.
First Friday Exposition: There
is monthly Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament with guided meditation
and prayers for Peace (after the 10am Mass) and for Vocations (after
the 6.30pm Mass).
Rosary Group: The
rosary is said in church every weekday after the 10am Mass. Everyone
is free to join in this prayer. The group prays for the sick and the
needs of the parish.
St Ignatius Charismatic Prayer Group: Founded
in 1982, the Prayer Group is an ecumenical charismatic group that meets
every Thursday evening at 7.30 in the church or small chapel. When Holy
Days of obligation fall on Thursday we join the Parish 7.30pm Mass
before commencing an abbreviated meeting. We seek to develop the Gifts
of the Spirit through celebration of Mass, faith-sharing, teaching,
intercession, and Bible study. We end each meeting with Exposition of
the Blessed Sacrament and the laying on of hands for healing. All
Welcome! Contacts: Amanda or Richard Taylor (020) 8800 5030
Legion Of Mary: The
Legion began as a lay apostolate in Dublin in 1921 and now has over a
million members world-wide. It meets at St Ignatius presbytery for
about one and a quarter hours on Wednesdays at 7.00pm. The weekly
prayers include saying the rosary, and work is assigned to members to
be done in the following week. Our work includes visiting the sick and
housebound, especially those in sheltered accommodation and visiting
anyone who requests prayer and rosary. We also carry Our Lady’s statue
to parishioners’ houses. Contact: Pat Enebeli (President) (020) 8802
St Michael and the Heavenly Host House of Prayer: This
is at 50 Tynmouth Road, N15, and has prayers at noon (Angelus and
Morning Prayer of the Church), 3pm (Divine Mercy and Sorrowful
Mysteries of the Rosary) and 6pm (Angelus and Evening Prayer of the
Church). There is a prayer group on Wednesday and Friday at 8pm and
prayer vigil every first Saturday from 10pm. All welcome. Contact:
Margaret Gallagher (020) 8808 0732.
CPM (Catholic Prayer Ministry of the Holy Spirit): This
is a world-wide association committed to adoration of Our Lord present
in the Blessed Sacrament and to promoting devotion to the Blessed
Virgin Mary. All are welcome to take part! We meet every third Sunday
of the month at 4pm in the small chapel and lead the singing at the 7pm
Mass in the church followed by Benediction. Contact: Eucharia Mbonu
(020) 8292 8592 or Biddy Nonkah (020) 8809 2597.
Divine Mercy: This
popular devotion has a strong following in the parish. Events are
publicised through the newsletter and notice board. We meet on the last
Tuesday of the month. Contact: Elizabeth Gomes 0208 800 1359.
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- To promote dialogue with other faiths near us (Muslim/Jewish /Hindu)
- To continue working closely with other Christian churches, strengthening joint projects and initiating new ones
Groups involved in this sector:
CTT (Christians Together in Tottenham): Involving
both pentecostal and mainstream churches, this group holds regular
meetings of clergy and lay people and is very active in local affairs.
We also promote the Good Friday Walk of Witness, One World Week and an
annual Open Air Service. Meetings are open to anyone. Contact: Fr
Bernard Charles (020) 8800 2121 or Dressman Kousin-Ezewu 079 5866 2044.
Night Shelter: Sixteen
Hackney churches co-operate to provide food and shelter for homeless
people each night of the week from January to March (see entry under
Social Outreach for more detail). Contact: Richard Taylor (020) 8800
Council of Christians and Jews: Stamford
Hill is a centre of Jewish life and our parish is very aware of the
importance of deepening our understanding of Judaism past and present,
and of building good community relations. The North London Branch of
CCJ meets regularly to discuss matters of common interest and to
organise events and projects. Contact: Fr Bernard Charles SJ (020) 8800
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- To promote Adult Education Seminars
- To find new ways of developing the skills and potential of those involved in Church life
Adult Education Seminars: Twice
a year the parish invites members of the Jesuit community and speakers
from outside to lead the parish in study and training. Past topics have
included Marriage, Counseling Skills, Other Faiths, Liturgy and
Scripture study. Participation is by enrolment and is free. Other
forms of Adult Formation are being investigated. Information about
individual courses available near the time. Contact: Fr Peter Randall,
SJ (020) 8800 2121
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