Sacramental Preparation

A Sacrament is an efficacious sign of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, by which divine life is given to us. Full and active participation in the sacramental life of the Church requires a period of preparation of both mind and heart to be receptive to the grace of new life in Christ.  We offer a number of programmes for children and adults at various stages in their life journeys, the details of which are listed below.


Baptism is the beginning of the journey of faith and provision is made for on-going formation for both parents and god-parents before the celebration of the Sacrament. If you would like to have your child baptised at St Mary’s you will need to attend Baptism Preparation. To register your attendance at our next class please email the parish office at and you will be sent a registration form.

We only ask new parents to do the preparation for baptism. If you have previously attended but feel you need a refresher then you are more than welcome to come along. Baptisms are celebrated every 4 to 6 weeks on a Saturday at 12 Noon and with up to four families. The baptism date is secured after you have attended the preparation class, or once you have returned the form if this is not your first child.

NB: If you live in a Parish outside the Deanery of Kensington and Chelsea or in another Diocese for example, we require a permission letter from the Priest where you live, giving his permission for the baptism to take place at St Mary’s. This is required even if you regularly attend Sunday Mass in our church.


This course is for children who are in Year 2 and attend a non Catholic school; it runs from January to May.  We invite parents to register for the course in late autumn and the maximum number of children permitted is 8. A photocopy of your child’s baptism certificate will need to be submitted with the application form and course fee.


From 2019/20 we will no longer deliver catechesis directly to the children. Instead our catechists will work with parents who will then work with their children in order to prepare them for First Reconciliation and First Holy Communion. This will mean that parents will be able to be refreshed with the teachings of our Faith. Parents will meet together to support and encourage one another and they will know that they are fulfilling the responsibilities which they took on at their child’s baptism. Fr Shaun will work with the diocese and our volunteer catechists to take on this new way of doing things. If you feel that you could help then please contact Fr Shaun at

Enquiries about the 2019/20 programme should be made to Fr Shaun or to the Parish Office in the summer of  2019.


For teenagers in Year 9 or aged 14-17 at the time of receiving the Sacrament.  The course usually begins in January and Registration opens in the Autumn. A photocopy of your child’s baptism certificate will need to be submitted with the application form and course fee.

Older Catholics who are not Confirmed should make enquiries to Fr Shaun about RCIA.


This programme is for adults who wish to be received into the Catholic Church or, who were baptised Catholic but have not received First Holy Communion/have not been Confirmed.  Please email Fr Shaun or the Parish Office in the first instance.


If the bride to be lives in our Parish and you are planning to get married at St Mary’s or elsewhere, a minimum of six months notice is required to complete the necessary paperwork. Please contact Fr Shaun or the Parish Office to make your initial enquiry.  If you do not live in our parish you need to make contact with a priest at the local catholic church where you are resident. He will be responsible for your paperwork, and for guiding you through the process on a practical and spiritual level.

You will also need to attend a Marriage Preparation Course.  Please visit for details of courses in the Diocese of Westminster.


This takes place during the 10am Family Mass on Sundays (term-time only) for all children at nursery and up to age 7 (Year 2).  Please email the Parish Office at and your enquiry will be forwarded to the course leader, or simply approach one of the leaders before/after Sunday Mass.

Interested in becoming a Catechist?  We need to recruit more people to help with this valuable ministry to help our children and young adults prepare for First Holy Communion and Confirmation.  If you feel you could help please contact Fr Shaun who would be delighted to talk to you about the programmes that we offer. Training and support are given and you will work with experienced people so please do think and pray about whether you could help hand on our faith to the next generation.