The LUP newsletter, In the LUPe, contains regular information about churches and mass outings from the rectors and student minister, and arriving students will find maps of local churches in their flats.
St Anselm’s chapel in Fischer Hall is available at all times when the building is over for quiet reflection.
NEWMAN HOUSE, the University Catholic Chaplaincy (111 Gower St, London WC1 6AR www.universitycatholic.net) are an international chaplaincy centre. You will always be welcome to go there, meet other students and get involved. Sunday Mass is at 10.30am and 7.30pm.
Going to a local parish church or cathedral is a great way to burst out of the Notre Dame bubble, meet friendly people and experience more of the everyday life of where you are living.
Catholicism is not a dominant religion in London and the vast majority of the churches in the city are Anglican. Owing to the strong English cathedral tradition that retained ‘high’ worship, it can be hard to tell the difference between Anglican and Catholic churches. If a church advertises ‘Evensong’ (as opposed to nothing or ‘Vespers’) then it is probably Anglican.
Some Catholic churches in London:
St Patrick’s, Cornwall Road, Waterloo – the nearest church to Conway Hall, right around the corner away from the river. Sunday Masses: 9am,11am, and Saturday 5.30pm (vigil). Run by Franciscans, this is the smallest church in the Archdiocese of Southwark and known for its friendly cultural diversity. Go and experience global Catholicism in London and a real parish of local people.
St George’s RC Cathedral, Southwark – where we sometimes have our opening Mass of the semester. This is right by the grand Imperial War Museum, the other side of Waterloo Station. Not to be confused with the Anglican Cathedral in Southwark, which is right by London Bridge Station. Sunday Masses: 8am, 10am (Family Mass), 11.30am (Sung Mass), 1pm (Spanish Mass), 6pm (Contemporary Music), and Saturday 6pm (vigil).
Westminster Cathedral – NOT Westminster Abbey by the Houses of Parliament, but instead further up Victoria St on the left hand side behind a ‘piazza’ or square. It is instantly identifiable by its distinctive Byzantine style and red-and-white stripes. It is home to a wonderful organ and world-class choir that offer arguably the best Catholic music in England. If you want to hear the full choir, aim for the 10.30am Sunday Mass or Vespers at 3.30pm on Sunday (which is followed by a free organ recital). During the week Vespers is sung at 5pm (without the boy choristers on Wed), with Mass at 5.30pm. The choristers will be on holiday until early September.
Corpus Christi, Maiden Lane – unassuming from the outside, this beautiful church is right by Covent Garden. Sunday Masses: 9.30am, 11.30am and Saturday 6pm (vigil). Latin Mass, 6.30pm Mondays; weekday Masses 1.05pm.
St Etheldreda’s, Ely Place – the oldest Catholic Church in England. Sunday Masses: 9am and 11am (Sung Latin)
St Patrick’s, Soho is a popular church for young Catholics in the city. They have daily Mass at 12.45pm and their music at the weekend is renowned for being particularly fine. Sunday Masses: 11am, 5pm, 6pm (Spanish), and Saturday 6pm (vigil).
The Brompton Oratory – traditional liturgy in upmarket South Kensington, perfect for a Sunday of museum-visiting down Exhibition Road, which is home to the Natural History Museum, Science Museum, and the Victoria and Albert Museum. Sunday Masses: 8am, 9am (1962 Missal), 10am, 11am (solemn Latin), 12.30pm, 4.30pm, 7pm, and Saturday 6pm (vigil).
Some Protestant churches in London:
St John’s Church at Waterloo – Conway Hall is right next to St John’s. Morning prayer 8.30am Monday to Friday. Sunday Masses: 9am and 10.30am.
Westminster Abbey – used for the coronations of monarchs and home to the tombs of kings, queens and notable national figures. There is an admission fee for tourists, but entry for services is free. There is always a major celebration at the Abbey on 13 October in commemoration of the translation of Edward the Confessor’s body to the shrine in the Abbey (the church that he had built as king). Holy Communion 8am on Sundays and weekdays, and 12.30pm on weekdays.
Oasis Church Waterloo – This is a church with a long history and a variety of names, where many Christian societies and initiatives were born. It initially had two buildings – Christ Church and Upton Chapel – both of which were bombed in 1940. Consequently the churches worked together to form a united congregation, Christ Church and Upton Chapel, which in 2003 joined the Oasis Trust, an organization which provides education, housing, health care, employment and training for church leaders around the world. Sunday Masses: 11am and 6.30pm.
St Paul’s Cathedral – across the Millennium Bridge from Tate Modern, this is the famous church built on a grand scale after the Great Fire of London in 1665. Sunday Masses: 8am, 10.15am, 11.30am, 3.15pm, 6pm.
St Martin’s in the Fields, Trafalgar Square – famous for its homeless outreach project (The Connection), the cafe in its crypt, and its wonderful lunchtime and evening concerts. It has an active Chinese-speaking congregation. Sunday Masses: 8am, 10am, 5pm, 6.30pm.