Sacramental Preparation

Information about receiving the Sacraments of the Church:

The Sacrament of Reconciliation

Reconciliation is available regularly every Saturday in both churches.

St Bernard’s: 10.15 – 10.45am

St Gabriel’s: 5.15 – 5.45pm

The Sacrament can be celebrated at any other convenient time. Please contact the clergy.

The Sacrament of the Sick

Anointing of the sick can be celebrated at any time as appropriate, for those facing particular illness, going into hospital for surgery etc, or of course as Viaticum (Food for the Journey) in preparation for the end of life in this world. (Celebrating the Sacrament of the Sick includes the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Please contact the clergy at any time.

Holy Matrimony

A baptised Catholic must marry according to the rites of the Church.  Couples preparing for marriage to take place either in this parish or to be married elsewhere are required by the Diocese of Westminster to give at least six months’ notice of an intended wedding so that the necessary preparation can be undertaken.  It is advisable to give as much notice as possible, for no date can be set for a wedding until the process of preparation is in place.  Speak with the Parish Priest to arrange a first meeting so that he can guide you in the process.

Information about Christian Initiation:

Baptism of Infants

Expectant parents, or parents of infants, are asked to contact one of the clergy after Sunday Mass to make an appointment to meet with him to begin the process of preparation for Baptism.  Parents need to attend a preparation course before any date for Baptism can be arranged.  The guidance of the Code of Canon Law is that infants should be baptised “within the first weeks” of life outside the womb.

Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)

This is for adults who want to explore the meaning of commitment to Catholic faith.  First it is for adults who have not been baptised, or those baptised in a non-Catholic ecclesial community, who wish to become Catholics.  Then it is for those who have been baptised a Catholic but who have, for whatever reason, never completed their initiation or who have fallen away from practising the faith and wish to return.  For further information, please speak with one of the clergy.

Sacraments Of Initiation For Younger People

  • Reconciliation And First Holy Communion (For children in Year 3 and above at school).
  • Confirmation.  (For young people in Year 9 and above at school).

Preparation for these sacraments is open to candidates from families who habitually live and practice the faith in this parish (See Catechism of the Catholic Church paragraphs 2041-2046), or exceptionally to candidates who worship here independent of parent or guardian. Children who are not pupils in a Catholic School need to complete the Parish R.E. Programme during the year before preparing for Reconciliation and First Holy Communion.

All practical information about the programmes of preparation for these sacraments is given at Sunday Mass at the appropriate time.