OUR LADY STAR OF THE SEA CATHOLIC CHURCH, LOWESTOFT
NEWS & EVENTS
The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has responded to the government’s document released today, 11 May, titled ‘Our plan to rebuild: The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy’.
The timing and the manner of the opening of churches touches profound sensitivities and spiritual needs. The Government’s document and statements fail to recognise this.
The Government’s position, established today, includes these steps aimed at opening churches as soon as possible: the establishment of a task force for places of worship, to work closely with ‘stakeholders’ in ensuring that premises are COVID-19 secure; and heeding the experience of other countries in which churches are already open for worship.
In dialogue with the Government, the Catholic Church will continue its engagement in this process and has already submitted a detailed plan, in full accordance with public health guidelines, for churches to be opened for private prayer.
The Church is ready to play its full part in the task force, understanding that this includes the possible earlier use of churches for private prayer, as a first safe step towards their use for public worship.
Q How can I watch Livestream Masses?
A Parishioners who are on Facebook can join our parish community group: www.facebook.com/groups/ourladylowestoft
Alternatively, recordings of the Livestream Masses are available below for a limited time shortly after their broadcast.
Our Lady Star of the Sea is the most easterly Roman Catholic Church in England, situated in the town of Lowestoft, Suffolk in the Diocese of East Anglia. All are very welcome at our regular Masses and during church opening times for quiet prayer and reflection.
Our mission is to serve those who share the Catholic faith and reach out to others in ways which will encourage and develop their interest in and understanding of Christianity. We are blessed to have a thriving weekly congregation of around 400 parishioners composed of several nationalities including English, Irish, Polish, Portugese, Spanish, Sri Lankan and Indian.
Mass at Our Lady's is said daily during the week and twice at weekends (currently online only at present_. Please see the Mass Times page for more details. Mass is also said every Sunday and once during the week at St Nicholas Chapel of Ease in Pakefield (no masses at present). The Sunday masses are normally sung, led either by the organ or instrumental group (see Music page for more about the church's Music ministry).
There are several active groups within the church: Knights of St Columba, Catholic Womens’ League, Childrens’ Liturgy Group, Stella Maris Toddlers’ Group, Adult Explorers and Prayer Group. Members of the church also assist with collecting and delivering items for the local Foodbank.
Modern Catholic life began in Lowestoft in 1867 with a Jesuit Mission, the Parish being established in 1881. Masses were initially celebrated in a fishing net loft but thanks to fundraising and donations it was possible in 1899 to start building the church we have today. The doors to Our Lady's were opened to the public in June 1902.
Our Lady's is regarded by many as the most beautiful Catholic church in Suffolk and contains some of the best examples of a restrained 'arts and crafts' style of decoration. It is a Grade 2 Listed building but unfortunately did suffer some bomb damage during Word War II.
Our Lady Star of the Sea Catholic Church
19 Gordon Road
Suffolk NR32 1NL
Tel: 01502 572453 (answerphone);
Fr Paul 07414 735102 (text only)
Above: Clergy of the Parish (L to R): Rev Stephen Pomeroy (Deacon), Rev Paul Chanh (Parish Priest), Fr Neville McClement
St Mary's R C Primary School on Kirkley Cliff was established in 1967 and has always maintained strong links with the church. Children from the parish can attend here with an option to apply for admission to Notre Dame High School in Norwich at age 11+.
St Nicholas Church, which is also part of the Parish, was originally built as a Congregational Church and purchased in the 1990s to replace a former billiard hall which had been used as a Chapel of Ease since 1955. This building is also in the 'arts and crafts' style, the work of the same architects of Our Lady's: Baines and Richards.