Parish News 2017

For Music news and accounts of events, please see the Music part of the website. For all forthcoming events see our Calendar and Future Events page.

Solemnity of Easter – The Resurrection of the Lord.

From Fr. Anthony Glaysher (parish priest)

I wish you all a very happy and a holy Easter. Do remember that Easter has just started and that we will celebrate the Octave of Easter with a Solemn Mass each day in St. Mary’s.
I take this opportunity of thanking you all once again for your generous donations and good wishes at Easter

You can see some Easter prayers and an Easter poem (written by parishioners) on our Invocations page; also some photos of Holy Week / Easter Services in our Gallery page.

May – Month of Mary

May is the Month of Mary, the Mother of God. Fr. Glaysher reminds us that we should make a special place for Our Lady in our lives, particularly this month. It is more significant this year as May 13th marls the centenary of the apparition of Our Blessed Lady at Fatima. May Devotions will be held in St. Mary’s every Tuesday at 6-00pm and the annual May Procession will be on Sunday, 7th May.

Holy Week in Ryde

All the services during Holy Week this year drew sizeable congregations. It was noticeable that there was an increase in the numbers of people availing themselves of the Sacrament of Confession.

On Palm Sunday, the palms were blessed in the church hall and carried in procession into the church before the Mass. The congregation walked in procession into the church while singing “Sing Hosanna to the King of kings”. In addition to St. Mary’s, there was an internal procession this year at St. Michael’s in Bembridge after the blessing of palms at the rear of the church.

For Maundy Thursday the church hall (in the old Presentation Convent) was used for the altar of repose. The word ‘Maundy’ is derived from the Latin word for ‘Command’. The ‘Maundy’ in Maundy Thursday refers to the command Jesus gave to the disciples at the Last Supper: that they should love and serve one another. Jesus washed the disciples’ feet as an act of humility and service, thereby setting an example that we should love and serve one another in humility [John 13 : 3-17]. In his sermon, Fr. Ken Rimini spoke of the institution of the Mass and the inauguration of the Priesthood on Maundy Thursday at the Last Supper. Christ’s love is clearly shown in his unaffected humility when he washed their feet. This was repeated by Fr. Glaysher who washed the feet of twelve men; emphasising both Christ’s humility and the fact that He chose twelve men as His apostles. At the end of Mass, the Blessed Sacrament was carried in procession and placed in the tabernacle at the altar of repose, while the congregation sang the “Tantum Ergo”. Many remained “watching” until the conclusion with night prayer at midnight. During this time, the formal stripping of the altar was performed in the sanctuary whilst the antiphon, “Dividunt sibi vestimenta mea” and the psalm, “My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me ….” was recited.

Good Friday saw a good congregation in St. Mary’s for the Solemn Passion Service led by Fr. Glaysher. After the traditional readings and the intercessions, the veiled crucifix was carried from the back of the church and venerated by all present as they approached the sanctuary steps. (See Gallery – Holy Week / Easter page for photographs).

Holy Communion was then brought from the altar of repose and distributed in the usual way.

Earlier in the day the children of the parish had their own Service of meditation on Christ’s Passion as they went around St. Mary’s to each Station of the Cross.

The ecumenical Walk of Witness this year was at Bembridge, where people assembled outside St. Michael’s, after the Stations of the Cross, to walk to the Parish Church in the village. Christians of all denominations were present giving witness to the Crucifixion with Readings and hymns.

The Service of Tenebrae was held once again at St. Michael’s on the evening of Good Friday. This is the name given to the service of Matins and Lauds belonging to the last three days of Holy Week. On Good Friday evening the psalms with antiphons were sung on this occasion at St. Michael’s in Bembridge.

The Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday commenced in the church garden.

The impressive Easter Vigil ceremony began with the blessing of the new fire and the Easter candle, which was then carried in procession into the church with Fr. Glaysher announcing “the Light of Christ” as the congregation entered the darkened church. This was followed by the traditional singing of the “Exultet”, and the seven readings.

Father thanked everyone in the parish who had contributed to the Liturgy; the cleaners and flower arrangers who had made the churches so beautiful; the servers and the choirs; and all those who had quietly, without seeking recognition, undertaken any work to prepare for the celebration of Easter.


The annual Chrism Mass and the blessing of the holy oils for the individual parishes took place on the Tuesday of Holy Week at the cathedral. This was Bishop Philip Egan’s first Chrism Mass for the Diocese. Bishop Egan’s Homily can be read on the Diocesan web site.

Isle of Wight Martyrs

Parishioners are reminded that April 26th marks the anniversary of the martyrdom of Blessed Robert Anderton and Blessed William Marsden, who were martyred for the Faith at Cowes in 1586. Their courage and their faith in adversity is a wonderful example to us all.

Bishop Philip Egan asks for our prayers for:-

The repose of the souls of all who have died recently. Requiescant in pace.
For all the sick clergy and for all in our Diocese who are sick and in need of our prayers.
All preparing for Baptism, Confirmation and Reception into the Church at Easter.
Archbishop Cornelius and the clergy and people of our twin diocese of Bamenda.
Peace in the world and for those who govern the nations that they may do so wisely and justly.
All those suffering in the world through hunger, disease, persecution and natural disaster.
For Vocations to the Priesthood, Diaconate and Religious Life and for all currently discerning their vocation. Also for those preparing for ordination to the priesthood and diaconate this year.
The work of all Evangelisation Strategy Teams across our Diocese and for those entering the "Called and Gifted" process.
The success of the Convocation of Clergy to be held 13th - 15th June.
All the faithful of the Diocese that they may share their time and talents for the good of the Church and discern how God is calling them in a particular way to be more intentional disciples.

Divine Mercy

The Sunday after Easter is LOW SUNDAY. It is also Divine Mercy Sunday. The monthly Divine Mercy Services move around to the different churches on the Island. On Divine Mercy Sunday (23rd April) the Service is at Quarr Abbey, commencing at 2-30pm

40 Hours Exposition

Fr. Glaysher expresses his thanks and appreciation to all those who supported the annual 40 Hours Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in St. Mary’s over the Passion Sunday weekend. He was pleased that there was a steady flow of parishioners and visitors coming into the church to pray and to meditate before Our Blessed Lord, truly present in the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance. See photograph in Gallery – Events page

Solemnity of the Annunciation.

Solemn Mass was offered in St. Mary’s, Ryde on this feast, followed by Marian devotions and the veneration of a rare relic of Our Lady (one of the few that exists in England).

In his sermon, the parish priest, Fr. Anthony Glaysher spoke about “Mary’s positive reply to the angel Gabriel when she agreed to be the Mother of God’s Son, Jesus; the second Person of the Blessed Trinity; the same person who by His Passion and death on the Cross, opened the way for the salvation of all those who believe in Him ………… We often see images of the Blessed Virgin holding a lily; a sign of her virginal purity; but to us, this feast means much more. It means that we recognize Mary as the Immaculate Conception. This was the privilege given to her by God, as the Mother of His Son, Jesus”.

Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady

During this Centenary year of the Fatima apparitions the National Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady of Fatima will be visiting 18 Cathedrals, Abbeys and Churches in England and Wales (Portsmouth Cathedral 26-27 August). On Saturday 18 February, Cardinal Vincent Nichols blessed the statue and renewed the consecration of England and Wales to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Here in Ryde we have our own blessed Pilgrim Statue, depicting the Immaculate Heart of Mary. She has been on continuous pilgrimage in the parish since Mothering Sunday 2014 and has a regular, devoted following. You are encouraged to honour our Blessed Mother by hosting the statue for two weeks. By entrusting to her loving care all the struggles and difficulties, joys and sorrows which we experience day by day, may we deserve to experience Our Blessed Mother’s powerful and consoling assistance in our lives. Our Lady’s visiting schedule is at the back of the church and there are still some slots available from the end of July onwards.

Feast of St. Joseph

The statue of St. Joseph beside the Lady Chapel shows him holding a lily, a sign of purity. St. Joseph, the husband of Mary, foster father of Jesus, and patron saint of a happy death, was declared patron of the Universal Church by Pope Pius lX in 1870 and the patron saint of workers by Pius XII in 1955. He is also the patron of husbands, fathers, workers and many parishes across our Diocese. Nothing is known of St Joseph except what is said of him in the Gospels. He was a carpenter; he accepted the will of God; and he supported Mary and brought up Jesus. From the human character of his Son we can see that he was a good and responsible father.

After Mass for this feast, Fr. Glaysher incensed the statue of St. Joseph (a gift of the Countess of Clare; foundress of the church). He recited a prayer in his honour and the congregation sang “Hail Holy Joseph Hail”.

Confirmation 2017

Application forms for the Sacrament of Confirmation are now available at the back of the church. Please take and complete a form if you wish to be considered for this Sacrament.

Isle of Wight Pastoral Area Evangelisation

Parishioners will find letters at the back of the church, which set out the aims and strategies of this group. They are responding to the bishop’s call for evangelisation to be an issue which is addressed throughout the diocese.

Prayers of the Faithful

Fr. Glaysher welcomes parishioners who would like to write the Bidding Prayers for Sunday Mass. Please talk to him about this. You can see a sample of these prayers, written by various parishioners for the Season of Lent, on the Invocations page.

Headteacher of St. Mary’s School

The school governors will soon be seeking to appoint a new Headteacher at our Catholic Primary school. Please pray that a good, committed Catholic will be appointed, who will actively lead staff and seek to promote the Catholic faith in our children.

Shrove Tuesday – Pancake Party

Fr. Glaysher thanks all those who supported the annual Pancake Party in any way. It was a great success and enjoyed by all. Congratulations to Caroline Burt and her group who won the quiz.

Photographs of the event can be seen in our Gallery – Community page. The “County Press” also reported on the events with an appropriate photograph of the festivities.

Confraternity of St. Peter

The Ryde group of this society met for Mass at St. Mary’s on the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter (22nd February) to renew their commitment to the apostolate and to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the inauguration of the society, which weeks to support with prayers, the Priestly Society of St. Peter.

Consecration of England to the Immaculate Heart of Mary

Saturday, 18th February was a significant day for the history of the Catholic church in England, as Cardinal Vincent Nicholls consecrated England to Mary’s Immaculate Heart in Westminster Cathedral, before 3000 people. It is especially significant to us here in Ryde, as our own beautiful church was the first in England to be dedicated to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary. Her love for us, her children, was promoted through the message of Our Lady at Fatima. In May 1917, she appeared to three shepherd children. She told them of a coming upheaval in the world, linked especially to Russia, which would cause terrible suffering. She also reminded the children of the danger of hell, and asked them to pray the rosary and make sacrifices for sinners.

She explained that there would be a great event on October 13th. That day, vast crowds gathered, and the “Miracle of the Sun” took place, at which many onlookers saw the sun dance.

Catholics are not obliged to believe in the Fátima revelations, but the Church has officially declared them “worthy of belief”, and Our Lady of Fátima has a central place in Marian devotion.

In his homily, Cardinal Nichols said the apparitions presented a “considerable challenge”, and that Catholics must ask themselves: “How well do we express our discipleship of Christ every day? How are we getting on in those two ways of giving time to the Lord and to others: in those areas of prayer and sacrifice?”

The cardinal recommended the rosary as a prayer to help one to say “yes” to God, which was, he said the essence of devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Prayers in honour of the Immaculate Heart of Mary can be found at the back of our two churches.

St. Therese Hall display

Many thanks to the IoW Catholic History Society for the interesting display of photographs now in the hall, which show St. Mary’s Church at different stages of its history. Please take a look when you are next in the hall.

Pilgrim statue of Our Lady

Have you volunteered to have this statue of Our Lady in your home for a period of two weeks? Please see the leaflet regarding this devotion at the back of the church and consider volunteering to have the statue in your home as a focal point of your prayers to Our Lady.

“Mass of Ages”

The quarterly magazine produced by the Latin Mass Society is available at the back of the church. It contains many interesting articles, including a report on the Day of Recollection held in St. Mary’s in January.

Sir John Simeon

The Isle of Wight Catholic History Society are pleased to announce the publication of another new booklet. This one is on the life and times of Sir John Simeon (1815 – 1870); the Catholic MP for the Isle of Wight. Islanders will be familiar with the Simeon Arms and Simeon Street in Ryde; - named after the local politician. He resigned as the Liberal MP for the Island, when he became a Catholic in 1851. Such was his popularity that even as a Catholic in Victorian Protestant England, he was elected when he stood for Parliament again in 1865. This new booklet, written by Yvonne Rowles of Bembridge is an excellent account of his life and his conversion. It is available at £2-00 from the IoW Catholic History Society or from St. Mary’s church crypt or repository.

Abbot Cuthbert OSB

Fr. Glaysher regrets that he was unable to attend the Solemn Requiem recently for Abbot Cuthbert Johnson OSB. Quite a few people from the parish were able to attend however. You will find an obituary to Abbot Cuthbert on the obituary page of the Isle of Wight Catholic History Society web site. Requiescat in pace

St. Mary’s School visit

The parish was pleased to welcome children from St. Mary’s School to the church on 27th January. They were given a guided tour by Peter Clarke. Sadly, not all children are as familiar with liturgical and devotional items in a church as they once were. During this visit, the children were reminded of the nature of a church as a place where Our Lord resides in the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle, where people come to pray, light a candle and meditate on the Word of God.

150th anniversary of St. Dominic's Priory, Carisbrooke

On 12th December Mass was offered at St. Dominic's Priory, Carisbrooke to mark the 150th anniversary of the arrival of the Dominican nuns and the first Mass to be offered there. The preacher at the Mass is Fr. Neil Ferguson O.P., who reminded the congregation of the vision of the Countess of Clare, who founded the priory in 1866 and the labours of love of the early Dominican nuns, who made vestments and became skilled embroiderers.

The following evening an Ecumenical Carol Service was held. Speakers related the story of the priory between the carols, from its inauguration to the present day.

Parish Directory

The new, updated parish directory is now available. It contains useful information on all groups / societies that contribute to the life of the parish.

West Grinstead Pilgrimage

This Year of Mercy Pilgrimage took place on the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. The pilgrims were welcomed once again by Fr. David Goddard (parish priest / shrine custodian). The day included Holy Mass offered by Fr. Jonathan Redvers Harris, Fr. Emmanuel from Newport and his Nigerian friend, Fr. Cajetan. Afterwards there was an opportunity to visit the museum and the secret chapel, where Mass was offered throughout the penal days and to visit the grave of the poet and writer, Hilaire Belloc. In the afternoon there was a Holy Hour with Exposition and Confessions and the Dolours Rosary was recited. On the return journey the pilgrims visited Arundel Cathedral and prayed at the tomb / shrine of St. Philip Howard.

See photos on our Gallery - Pilgrimages page. Read a more detailed account of West Grinstead and Arundel Cathedral on our Pilgrimages page.

Canonization of Mother Teresa

Cecilia Herbing and Annie Knowlson (from this parish) attended the canonisation in Rome in September. Whilst there, they assisted other pilgrims who had special needs. Their report on the momentous event will be included at a later date. See pictures on our Gallery – Events page.

Future Parish Events

For a complete list of future events in the parish, visit our Calendar and Future Events page.

Abbatial Blessing of Dom Xavier Perrin OSB

Solemn Abbatial Blessing and Installation of Dom Xavier Perrin OSB as Abbot of Quarr on the Feast of the Transfiguration, 2016. The abbey church was packed for this wonderful occasion, which was attended by the Archbishop of Toulouse, Bishop Philip Egan, around 15 abbots from other Benedictine abbeys in England and France and over twenty priests, together with the monks and brothers of Quarr Abbey. Several abbesses and prioresses were present, including Mother Ninian from St. Cecilia's Abbey in Ryde; together with various Island civic dignitaries.

After the Gospel the Abbot-Elect was led to the bishop for examination. After the invitation to prayer, the Litany of the Saints was sung, followed by the Prayer of Blessing, the presentation of the Rule of St. Benedict and the Pontifical Insignia.

In his homily Bishop Egan reminded the congregation that:-

“the Transfiguration is about the Mystery of God and the revelation of the splendour of God the Son. The Father said: “ This is my beloved Son. Listen to Him”. Indeed, we must all listen to the Word of God.

In the Transfiguration Jesus revealed His future glorified humanity. He showed us what we will hopefully become. An abbey is somewhere where we can be reminded of this and where we can encounter God.

We pray today for Father Xavier, that he will be a good Father to the Benedictine community. We pray also for this Abbey of Our Lady of Quarr. We pray that the Gregorian chant and the beauty of the Liturgy here, will assist us to encounter Almighty God.

Let us remember at this point that humans can never be fully happy without a relationship with God. Our secular society of today need to be aware of this fact.

When I became a bishop almost four years ago, I prepared to lay down my life for the priests and the people of the Diocese. In the same way an abbot must lay down his life for his monastic community. He will need to lead them with wisdom and prudence. I hope and pray that Quarr will continue to be a praying community; praying for the needs of the Church and the Diocese”.

At the end of the Mass, a message of goodwill from Pope Francis was read by the Abbot of Solesmes, and an Apostolic Blessing was imparted to all those present. (See photographs on our Gallery – Events page).

Abbot Xavier asked for the prayers of the people present. It was apt that in this Year of Mercy, he should speak about his confidence in a God of Mercy, who will give him courage and fortitude in his mission ahead.

"Day with Mary"

On Saturday 16 July, the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, six parishioners from St. Mary's Church Ryde, attended the Day with Mary in Portsmouth Cathedral. Mass was concelebrated by Canon Dominic Golding, the Vicar General, and Father John Paul Lyttle, another priest from the Cathedral parish. Canon Golding preached about the place of Our Lady in our lives, particularly under the title of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. He reminded us of the Scapular devotion. He talked about Blessed Titus Brandsma, the Dutch Carmelite, who was executed by the Nazis in Dachau. At the beatification ceremony in 1985, Pope John Paul II said that he, too, had worn the brown scapular next to his heart for many years.

After lunch, Father Lyttle preached on the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary, emphasising that we must be open to the Holy Spirit as the power for change in our lives. We must listen to the Lord and ask for the grace to see things as they really are and not as we wish them. The Mysteries of Light should enlighten our whole life, encouraging us to live a life of grace and holiness.

Our third preacher was Father Serafino Lanzetta, from St. Mary's Church Gosport. He spoke on the message of Fatima. Mary is the Mother of God and of each of us and we need to consecrate ourselves to her Immaculate Heart. He drew parallels between Mary's fiat at the annunciation, allowing God to accomplish His plan of salvation, reinforced by the presentation in the temple of the Baby Jesus to God; and the fiats of Jesus 'Thy will be done' 'It is accomplished.' The fiats of Mother and Son came together in the supreme sacrifice on Calvary where, at the foot of the Cross, Mary receives her future role: a unique spiritual motherhood of each of us.

Our relationship with Our Lady is not an optional extra. By consecrating ourselves to her Immaculate Heart, we are acknowledging her role in our life. We need simply say: 'Our Lady, my Mother, I want to give myself wholly to you'.

It was a very full day, very well attended and spiritually uplifting.

“The Rosary: England’s Prayer”

This is a new booklet by Edmund Matyjaszek, a parishioner of St. Mary’s, to accompany his earlier “Walsingham: England’s Nazareth”, published this summer in association with the Catholic History Society.

It has a foreword by Bishop Philip Egan of Portsmouth, and looks at the rosary from three viewpoints: modern poems responding to the traditional 15 mysteries with a note on St John-Paul’s Luminous Mysteries; old master and other paintings of the mysteries; and, most tellingly, quotations from English writers from Chaucer through Shakespeare, Keats and Tennyson up to TS Eliot, Seamus Heaney and Ted Hughes that show the extraordinary tenacity on the English imagination of this beloved prayer that was suppressed in law for over 250 years and yet never disappeared from private devotion or public acknowledgement. Priced at £2-50 and available from the Catholic History Society, this is a booklet to learn from, enjoy and treasure.

Vocations to the Holy Priesthood

Bishop Philip Egan reminds us about the need to pray for Vocations:-

“Without Priests we would have no Catholic Church. There would be no Mass, no Reconciliation and no Anointing of the Sick! We need more Priests.

Please pray for the young men in your parishes that some of them may hear and answer God's call to serve his Church in the Sacred Priesthood”

The bishop recommends this prayer for us to say:-

”Grant, Lord, that those whom you call to enter the priesthood or the religious life may have the generosity to answer your call, so that those who need your help may always find it. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen”.

Fr. Jonathan Redvers Harris

Please remember Fr. Jonathan in your prayers as he celebrates the 5th anniversary of his Ordination to the Holy Priesthood on 25th June. Before he moved as parish priest to East Cowes, Father was resident here in Ryde, assisting in the parish, as well as ministering to the Ordinariate group, who joined the Catholic church with him in 2011. He now offers a monthly Ordinariate Mass at 5-00pm in St. Mary’s on the second Sunday of each month.

Walsingham Pilgrimage

19 of our parishioners joined the Island Pilgrimage to Walsingham last week. It was a truly uplifting and most enjoyable pilgrimage. Mass was offered for all parishioners and for the needs of the parish and the wider Church at the shrine. In addition to walking along the Holy Mile from Walsingham to the Slipper Chapel, the pilgrims visited the Medieval abbey ruins, the Anglican shrine and Oxburg Hall, a Catholic family house (with a priest’s hole) where the Faith was never lost throughout the penal times.

Visit the Catholic History Society website for more details and photographs of the pilgrimage –

For more information on the history of Walsingham click on the link below:-

Pilgrim Statue of Our Lady

The statue of Our Lady of Sorrows (known in our parish as the Pilgrim Statue) is allocated to different families / individuals throughout the year. It becomes a focal point for prayers to Our Lady in the home.

There is a new list at the back of the church for parishioners to sign in order to select a two week period during 2016, when they can have the statue in their home.

150th anniversary of the visit of Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman to Ryde

There were celebrations in Ryde over the weekend of 12th / 13th September to mark the 150th anniversary of the visit of Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman. He spent a week on the Island, mainly visiting old friends from his Anglican days. There were two talks on Newman’s life. Fr. Richard Duncan (from Birmingham Oratory) spoke on Newman as a priest and an Oratorian and the influence that St. Philip Neri had on his conversion. Secondly, Monsignor Keith Newton (Ordinary of the Ordinariate) led a Service of commemoration followed by Benediction. In his homily he spoke of the many people who had been inspired to convert by the writings of Newman, especially in recent times, those in the Ordinariate. He said that:-

“Newman’s beliefs were nurtured by his Anglican background and were matured by his Catholic priesthood. Like Newman, we in the Ordinariate have had to experience the parting of friends in our journey to the One True Faith ………………… Despite this, and like many of us in the Ordinariate today, Newman, retained a strong affection for his former Anglican colleagues, whilst his writings and his preaching encouraged many to follow his path”.

Afterwards, visitors were given a tour of the church and the private chapel of the foundress, Elizabeth, Countess of Clare. This is where Newman spent much of his time whilst in Ryde, in private prayer, mediation and devotion.

The Isle of Wight Catholic History Society, in co-operation with Fr. Anthony Glaysher, (parish priest of St. Mary’s, Ryde), organized the celebrations and have produced a commemorative booklet to mark this anniversary. It is available at £1-50 from St. Mary’s crypt and repository.

Ordinariate Masses at St Mary's.

Please read below the message from Fr. Jonathan Redvers Harris regarding changes to the Ordinariate Masses:-

Because of Fr Jonathan's appointment to the parish of Cowes next month, while continuing also as parish priest at East Cowes, very sadly a weekly Sunday Ordinariate Mass will no longer, at present, be possible at St Mary's.  So, as from Sunday 20th September, there will be no 9am Sunday Mass with the Ordinariate liturgy at St Mary's.  However there will be a monthly Sunday Ordinariate sung Solemn Mass on the second Sunday of each month at 5pm at St Mary's (the first three being 11th October, 8th November and 13th December), together with occasional choral Evensongs.  The Ordinariate community is extremely grateful for Fr Anthony's continued hospitality in agreeing to this.  A weekly Ordinariate Mass will, from Saturday 26th September, be offered at St David's East Cowes, as a 5pm Vigil Mass."

Friday Abstinence

We often need to remind ourselves of the obligation to abstain from meat on all Fridays throughout the year, as a simple but profound act of penance. By the practice of penance every Catholic identifies with Christ in His death on the Cross. We do so in prayer, through uniting the sufferings and sacrifices in our lives with those of Christ's Passion; in fasting, by dying to self in order to be close to Christ; and in almsgiving, by demonstrating our solidarity with the sufferings of Christ in those in need.

The English Bishops encourage us to recognise the Friday Abstinence: “……… as a clear and distinctive mark of their own Catholic identity ………. and as part of a common resolve and common witness. It is important that all the Faithful be united in a common celebration of Friday penance.

Those who do not eat meat as part of their normal diet should abstain from some other food of which they regularly partake.

Future Parish events

See our updated Calendar page and Future Events page for a comprehensive list of all parish events up until Christmas.

Fr. Jonathan Redvers Harris

Congratulations to Fr. Jonathan who has just been appointed as the Vice Chancellor of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. He will take over as Chancellor later in the year, whilst still continuing with his ministry both here and at East Cowes. Please remember Father in your prayers as he undertakes this additional ministry.

Dolour Rosary

Dolour Rosary is meditations on the Seven Sorrows of Our Lady at the Statue of Our Lady of Sorrows at the back of the church. Participants reflect on the sorrowful events in Mary’s life. (See below)

Mysteries of the Dolour Rosary
1st Sorrow – Prophecy of Simeon
2nd Sorrow - Flight into Egypt
3rd Sorrow – The loss of Jesus for three days
4th Sorrow - The meeting of Jesus and Mary
5th Sorrow - The Crucifixion
6th Sorrow - Jesus in the arms of Mary
7th Sorrow - The burial of Jesus

Pilgrim Statue of the Immaculate Heart of Mary

The Pilgrim statue of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, which was purchased by two parishioners last year, will continue to “tour” the homes of parishioners in 2015. The statue emphasises the dedication of our church to the “Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary” and it acts as a bond of unity in prayer across the parish. Parishioners are encouraged to sign the list at the back of the church in order to book the Statue of Our Lady for a fortnight, when it will become the focal point of prayer in their homes.

Associated with the statue are pamphlets, written and produced by the Island Catholic History Society, which give a history of devotion to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.

Mass Ad Orientem

Many Catholics simply see Mass Ad Orientem as the priest having his back to the people and they cannot understand the significance of eastward facing. Here a simple explanation of the importance of “Mass Ad Orientem” (facing east), which is becoming more common not only here in Ryde, with Ordinariate and E.F. Masses, but also elsewhere in the Diocese.

Click on the You tube for this short, concise explanation. The simple link is:

Adoration and Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament

Bishop Egan reminds us this week of the words of Blessed Pope John-Paul II regarding attendance at Exposition:-

“The worship of the Eucharist outside of the Mass is of inestimable value for the life of the Church. ..
It is pleasant to spend time with him, to lie close to his breast like the Beloved Disciple and to feel the infinite love present in his heart. If in our time Christians must be distinguished above all by the ‘art of prayer’, how can we not feel a renewed need to spend time in spiritual converse, in silent adoration, in heartfelt love before Christ present in the Most Holy Sacrament? How often, dear brother and sisters, have I experienced this, and drawn from it strength, consolation and support!” (John Paul II Ecclesia de Eucharistia 25).

There is almost three hours of Exposition between our two churches each week. Times are on the newsletter. This is ample opportunity for private prayer and devotion (outside of the Mass) in praise and honour of Our Blessed Lord, truly present in the Blessed Sacrament of the altar.

Visitors to Ryde

It is always thoroughly rewarding giving guided tours at St. Mary's both to school parties and individuals, whether they are holiday makers or parishioners, simply wishing to find out more about this beautiful, early Victorian Catholic church. Two recent visitors were so impressed with St. Mary's that they took photographs and recorded what they saw and learnt on their blogspot. Click on to it (below) and see what they thought.

Church Crypt

In the church crypt you will find some of the latest Catholic History Society booklets on sale as well as some new greetings cards with depictions of Our Lady of Walsingham and the Sorrowful Heart of Mary. The crypt is the only church crypt on the Island, which is open on a regular basis. Why not call in on Wednesday, Thursday or Friday morning for tea / coffee and to meet fellow parishioners.

Friday Abstinence.

We often need to remind ourselves of the obligation to abstain from meat on all Fridays throughout the year, as a simple but profound act of penance. By the practice of penance every Catholic identifies with Christ in His death on the Cross. We do so in prayer, through uniting the sufferings and sacrifices in our lives with those of Christ's Passion; in fasting, by dying to self in order to be close to Christ; and in almsgiving, by demonstrating our solidarity with the sufferings of Christ in those in need.

The English Bishops encourage us to recognise the Friday Abstinence: “……… as a clear and distinctive mark of their own Catholic identity ………. and as part of a common resolve and common witness. It is important that all the Faithful be united in a common celebration of Friday penance.

Those who do not eat meat as part of their normal diet should abstain from some other food of which they regularly partake.

Open Arms Project

The Open Arms Project brings Christians of all denominations together in Ryde to provide a meal for those in need. At a meeting of Open Arms supporters, organisers and volunteers, held at the Methodist Church, Ryde, on Saturday, 7th February, an Article of Association was signed by a representative from each of the following organisations:- Open Arms (which includes the ‘Meeting Place’), Churches Together in Ryde and the Methodist Church, Ryde.

This document protects Open Arms and confirms that it can continue to operate from the present venue at the Methodist Church, Ryde, for as long as the organisers of Open Arms wish.

This was welcomed enthusiastically by all present.

St. Mary’s has always shown a keen interest in this project and a number of parishioners are actively involved each week.

St. Mary’s Church leaflet

The parish has produced a new leaflet (in liaison with the Island Catholic History Society), which gives a brief history and tour of our church. This leaflet (which is free) is ideal both for parishioners and for visitors, who wish to learn about our historic church. It is available at the back of the church and in the crypt.

Silence in church

Fr. Glaysher made an appeal for silence in church last weekend. He said: “As a part of the Year of Faith, it is an opportune time to remind ourselves of the importance of silence in church, in respect of the Blessed Sacrament - Our Blessed Lord present in the tabernacle and in respect of others in the church who wish to meditate and pray”.

Eucharistic Adoration

His Holiness Pope Benedict has appealed for the faithful to show their adoration of the Most Blessed Sacrament of the altar outside of the Mass. This is particularly relevant as we approach the inauguration of the Year of the Faith. Here in St. Mary's, we already have Exposition on four different days (see newsletter) in addition to the First Friday Holy Hour

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