Welcome to the Church of Our Lady of Walsingham with St. Cuthbert Mayne, Chelston, Torbay – Ad maiorem Dei Gloriam!!

Our Lady of Walsingham and St Cuthbert Mayne, Chelston - June 2015

In the last half hour it was announced officially: the former Methodist Church in Chelston, Torbay is now the Ordinariate Church of Our Lady of Walsingham with St. Cuthbert Mayne, Chelston. Fr. David’s wife, Liz Lashbrooke, commented on facebookYes it’s official…whoop whoop….

The full SW Ordinariate facebook page announcement reads:

Congratulations to Fr Lashbrooke and all his people; they now have a Catholic church under the jurisdiction of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. The Ordinariate’s Torbay Mission has a headquarters!! And thanks be to God for all the generous benefactors throughout the country who made it possible, and also the Methodist Church, who were so pleased a Christian community would be taking on their old chapel. May God the Holy Spirit give them the necessary gifts to transmit the Faith and witness to the Gospel of our Saviour in Torbay. Deo gratias. Our Lady of Walsingham and St Cuthbert Mayne pray for them.

So far just over £100,000 has been raised out of a total projected capital requirement of £269,000 for the purchase of the buildings, refurbishment and transformation into a Catholic place of worship as well as alteration of some parish rooms into a presbytery for the pastor and his family. So there is still quite a long way to go. You can play your part in helping the Torbay Mission by donating online using the mydonate button in the right hand column. Thank you very much.

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7 Responses to Welcome to the Church of Our Lady of Walsingham with St. Cuthbert Mayne, Chelston, Torbay – Ad maiorem Dei Gloriam!!

  1. Jeff Hirst says:

    Fantastic news! And its not the first time the Methodists have shown kindness to Catholics. A few years ago, when the old Catholic church in Walsingham had been demolished and the new one was being built, the local Methodist community put their lovely, historic chapel at the entire disposal of the Catholic parish for as long as was needed, with no restrictions.

  2. Paul Waddington says:

    This is a very significant step forward for the Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham. It shows what can be done by an enthusiastic team. Let us hope that the money can be found to complete the project.

  3. godfrey1099 says:

    Deo gratias!
    In the similar spirit, recently a presbyterian church (merged with another one) donated a valuable pipe organ to St Barnaba’s (Omaha) just for the cost of removal, despite several paying offers, because they were happy that it would still be used to give glory to God.

  4. Rev22:17 says:

    David,

    You wrote: In the last half hour it was announced officially: the former Methodist Church in Chelston, Torbay is now the Ordinariate Church of Our Lady of Walsingham with St. Cuthbert Mayne, Chelston.

    This clearly is very good news, indeed!

    My real concern is that the community that acquires property has the resources (financial means and talent) required to maintain it. Older church buildings are often very poorly insulated, and thus costly to heat in the winter and to cool in the summer, and they also often require a LOT of physical maintenance due to deterioration associated with their age.

    IIRC, this is the first property to which the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham and its congregations have acquired the deed. My understanding is that the deeds of both churches entrusted to the ordinariate in London remain with the respective archdioceses and the deed of St. Agatha’s in Portsmouth rests with a historic trust. Both the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter and the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of the Southern Cross have congregations that brought their facilities with them when they joined the respective ordinariates.

    Norm.

  5. EPMS says:

    While it would have been discouraging to set a fundraising goal and fail to meet it, I nonetheless share Norm’s reservations about this project and similar capital campaigns undertaken by relatively small groups. The risk of becoming “house poor” seems very great, with the corresponding loss of resources for other parish activity, or in the case of the OCSP, Ordinariate activity. The OOLW does not own a showy Chancery on a five million dollar site, yet it seems able to maintain a website and put out a monthly periodical of professional quality, organise national events, and support an Ordinary whose entire job is to co-ordinate the activities of the OOLW and its staff while maintaining visibility on the UK Catholic scene.

  6. Fr Masaki says:

    Hope it’s the start of many such initiatives. Pembury, the home of Tunbridge Wells Ordinariate group, has just completed the refurbishing of its building at it’s own expense, though the plant is still owned by the Archdiocese of Southwark. While the question of maintenance and running cost should not be sidestepped, a wise planner will have taken them into account before investing a large sum into a historical building. Also modern building technology can mitigate the higher-than-average running cost.

    • Rev22:17 says:

      Fr. Masaki,

      You wrote: While the question of maintenance and running cost should not be sidestepped, a wise planner will have taken them into account before investing a large sum into a historical building.

      I agree.

      Unfortunately, the majority of clergy are not exactly experts in the area of financial planning. I have seen more than a few Catholic pastors pack their parish pastoral and financial councils with “‘Yes!’ men” and “‘Yes!’ women” — people who would not question the pastor’s proposals, no matter how hair-brained they might have been. The consequences invariably were disastrous for the parish.

      You wrote: Also modern building technology can mitigate the higher-than-average running cost.

      Yes, but not without significant additional investment of the very capital that the parish lacks due to the cost of operating its inefficient physical plant.

      Norm.

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