Welcome to the Catholic Parish of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart with St Edmund Campion of Wellingborough in the Northampton Diocese.

Find Us

Our Lady Of The Sacred Heart RC Church

82 Knox Road

St Edmund Campion R C Church

Henshaw road

Until further notice
there will be no Public Masses

Fr Paul’s Ascension Day and Pentecost Parish Letter

Dear Friends,
These times, which have brought worry, loss or grief to so many people around the world, bring the best and the worst out of us all. Perhaps with humility we are relearning just who and what really matters in our lives and in the well being of our communities and of our world. We are renewing a sense of deep respect for those who are prepared to sacrifice themselves for the good of others.
Ascension Day (21st May) is approaching. It is, of course the day when the Risen Christ ascends into heaven in the presence of his disciples, who were to wait for the baptism of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost (31st May). Christ is risen and ascends to the Father and:
“where the Head has gone before in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope”
(words from the opening prayer for Ascension Day)
This is the same Jesus who first went down in the descent of humility.
“...though in the form of God, he humbled himself taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a Cross. Therefore, God has highly exalted him...”
(Philippians 2:6-9)
Before he ascends, we see the “going down” of Christ’s in his crucifixion. In the Apostles Creed we declare that he “descended into hell”. Where the Head has gone, we, the Body, are called to follow in hope. This is the self-sacrificing call that so many saints, martyrs and ordinary Christians have fearlessly responded to around the world. In seeking out, accompanying and offering hope to those who maybe, are living today in a kind of hell. This hell of isolation, overcrowded prisons, addiction, poverty, abuse, lack of affordable healthcare, modern day slavery and forced migration that tempts so many to escape through substitutes offered by a world alienated from God, only to find themselves more entangled in it than before.
The movement of descent brings us to the place of sacrifice. Jesus is called the Lamb of sacrifice. You will be familiar with the words of the priest to the people at every Mass:
“Pray brothers and sisters, that my sacrifice and yours
may be acceptable to God, the almighty Father.”
The notion of sacrifice had almost been extinguished from modern life. But once again with our coming together in solidarity to protect lives and in our celebrating of VE Day during the Church seasons of Lent and Easter, we see around us once again the nobility of humble sacrifice for the sick, those in care homes, the vulnerable, the homeless, the neighbour, the country and so on. People once overlooked, such as carers, cleaners, nurses, porters, shop workers and bus drivers overnight became “essential” and “keyworkers”. And selfless service has cost some of them their lives.
By the power of the Holy Spirit we are given the possibility of following the Lord in humble descent and thereby making our own the Pentecostal gifts of the Spirit which poured out from the Lord’s ascent. Yes, we still want pleasure. We want delight. We want comfort. There is no greater delight than in the gift of the Holy Spirit. There is no greater comfort than that of the Comforter. This is the gift of Pentecost. But we must always warn people, or remind ourselves, that this is only truly and lastingly achieved by putting ourselves on the way of the Cross.
Fr. Paul

Donation for the Parish

By Telephone: Giving Tuesday

If you wish to donate by telephone, each Tuesday between 10:00am and 4:00pm, you can call 01604 712065, and donate to your parish.
They will require your debit or credit card to hand in when you call. You can make a one-off donation to cover your missed Sunday offerings or call each week knowing your offering is going to the parish you wish.
As only one person will be taking these calls, if the line is engaged, you can either call back a little later or leave your contact details on the answer machine and they will get back to you.

Online Donations: Virgin Money Giving

The Northampton Diocese provides a donation facility through Virgin Money Giving.
If you use the online donation option, please indicate "Donation to Our Lady of the Sacred Heart - Wellingborough" in the "Leave a message" section.
Please note that there is the facility to Gift Aid for any donation to the parish.

Make a donation using Virgin Money Giving

Standing Order

You can set up a standing order for donations to the parish using either your on line bank account or in branch.
The information required to make the donation is as follows.

Sort Code:60-06-11
Account Name:46898093
Account Name:Northampton Roman Catholic Diocesan Trust
Payment Ref:Our Lady - Wellingborough

Newsletter for the Diocese

"Father, I abandon myself into your hands!"

Dear Friends!
We keep hearing that these are unprecedented times. They are indeed! And when we come before the Lord in prayer, we may well find ourselves asking him, ‘what are you saying to us Lord in all of this?’ We all have our own circumstances in which to ask this question and seek a reply. I know my own situation. No sooner did I arrive in Northampton and be ordained bishop then the lockdown began. To be honest with you, it is all very frustrating! I really do want to visit communities and begin to know the parishes and the clergy, the religious and the schools. All that said, I appreciate the many blessings I have and I worry about those who are less fortunate, those who are feeling very enclosed at the moment, unsafe and vulnerable, those who are missing the sacraments.
One thing is for sure, the Lord is speaking to us from the midst of this terrible pestilence. Personally, I am being forced to reflect on some important truths. I am all too comfortable at times with activity rather than being still and listening to God. Too often, I want to tell God my plans and ask him to bless them, rather than seeking his agenda in my life. And yes, it has to be said, I have discovered zoom conferencing!
Every day, for most of my forty years of priesthood, I have prayed the Prayer of Abandonment, inspired by a meditation of Blessed Charles de Foucauld. (I will share this with you at the end of this reflection.) Well I may have said the words, but did I really mean them? A microscopic virus is certainly challenging my sense of really abandoning myself to the Father’s will. Our civil and ecclesial societies has been forced to consider unprecedented measures (that word unprecedented again!) to deal with all this.
So how do I feel about it all? I have always been a fan of Fr Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher to the Papal household. Here are some of the words he preached in St Peter’s Basilica on Good Friday:
‘But there is one effect that the current situation can help us to grasp in particular. The cross of Christ has changed the meaning of pain and human suffering—of every kind of suffering, physical and moral. It is no longer punishment, a curse. It was redeemed at its root when the Son of God took it upon himself. What is the surest proof that the drink someone offers you is not poisoned? It is if that person drinks from the same cup before you do. This is what God has done: on the cross he drank, in front of the whole world, the cup of pain down to its dregs. This is how he showed us it is not poisoned, but that there is a pearl at the bottom of this chalice.’
I can’t stop reading these words! And now for the Prayer of Abandonment. I invite you to join me in praying this regularly:
I abandon myself into your hands;
do with me what you will.
Whatever you may do, I thank you:
I am ready for all, I accept all.
Let only your will be done in me,
and in all your creatures –
I wish no more than this, O Lord.
Into your hands I commend my soul:
I offer it to you with all the love of my heart,
for I love you, Lord, and so need to give myself,
to surrender myself into your hands without reserve,
and with boundless confidence,
for you are my Father.’
Bishop of Northampton
Dear Brothers and Sisters,

Let The Lord wash your feet

When the ‘lockdown’ came in with sudden effect, I felt completely unable to get a grip and work out some effective strategy for the new situation I found myself working in. A few funeral visits. A few small gatherings by the graveside and at the crematorium came and went. Then it crept up on me unseen.
First a pain right up my back, so that I couldn’t sleep. Then the next day the pain went right up my front and stayed. My head felt as though clamped in a vice. My nose was blocked and all my muscles went weak. My taste buds were shot and my mouth tasted like a toxic waste dump. I was forced to self-diagnose the Coronavirus.
Days and nights passed with little change. Things eased and I slept continually. Then one evening I began to cough and I could feel my lungs were not good. For the first time I thought that I might not get through this.
And here I was pathetic and useless as Holy Week began. I wasn’t even praying properly! Getting to Maundy Thursday evening, sadly I ‘live streamed’ the Mass of the Last Supper celebrated by Pope Francis from St Peter’s in Rome. He quietly delivered his homily without any script, straight from the heart into the vast emptiness of the basilica. All I remember were his quietly firm word. “Let the Lord wash your feet”, repeated three times.
These words enter me at a deep level, expressing the inexpressible. They are with me when I lie down and they are with me when I wake up.
It is good to work for God and even better to do God’s work. But there are times when God must be allowed to work for us and within us – if we are to be transformed.
Let the Lord wash your feet.
This is the ‘letting go and letting God’. This is the struggle after many years of kneeling before God, to now let God (in Jesus) kneel before you and wash your feet. This useless pray-er is being drawn into still, loving attentiveness before the Lord. Easy – but difficult too, because of that guilty sense (fostered by the devil) that I should be doing something – that my ‘idleness’ may be an insult to God. This is the point to peacefully cooperate as the Lord works within. The experience of being useless is not a sign of failure, but of growth. The dark dryness is evidence that God is not absent but present in a deeper way. We have not lost our way even though we cannot see the Way. This is the faith of Holy Week that opens up in us the Risen life of Easter.
What an abyss confronts Mary Magdelene, as she loses the one she loves above all else, on the Cross. The feet that she had so lovingly knelt to wipe clean with her hair, now scarred by the nails of death.
What unexpected joy in the garden of her encounter with Him whom she recognises first not by sight, but by his calling of her name in the quiet dawn of her longing.
His Risen life fills her - consumes her, as she runs to tell her brothers.
P.S. I think I have more or less recovered, but I will now go “under the radar” for a week or two to get my physical strength back. The funeral directors have my mobile number if they need me.
A book to read is “Drinking from a dry well” by Thomas H Green S.J
I am grateful to Mgr John Broadhurst who kept the Mass going when I could not do so.
I am grateful to you all just for being there with me.
Fr. Paul

Holy Week and Easter at home

Click here to see Resources for Holy Week at Home
Two weeks into lockdown, and many of us are having to find a new rhythm to our lives. Things that we've taken for granted are just not possible. Holy Week and The Easter Triduum without going to church seems unimaginable. How can we journey with Christ through this most important and telling of weeks without Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, The Easter Vigil and all our Easter services? Here is a collection of resources, activities, and reflections to help us through this time. And hopefully you might find some new traditions to enrich your faith that you'll want to carry forward even after we're all back together again.

Pastoral Letter from Father Paul

Dear Friends in Christ,

I miss you all.
I have grown used to so many hands held out to offer and to receive the peace of Christ; so many ears listening to His Word, so many mouths opened to sing God’s praise and to speak His truth.
This Lent has become, for many Catholics, a time of fasting from the gathering of the faithful to receive Christ in the Holy Mass.
What Easter joy when once again, we will enter God’s house together and receive Him who first receives us, with a love that will never let us go!

A Prayer of Spiritual Communion. by St Alphonsus
My Jesus, I believe that You
are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.
I love you above all things
and I desire to receive You into my soul.
Since I cannot at this moment
receive You sacramentally,
come at least spiritually into my heart.
I embrace you as if You were already there
and unite myself wholly to You.
Never permit me to be separated from You.

With my daily prayers, especially for the lonely and the fearful among us.
Yours in Christ
Fr Paul

P. S.
Do remember your private devotions including the Rosary and the Stations of the Cross.
The daily Offices, rosary and stations can be downloaded on your phone with a brilliant app. Just google “Universalis” and buy for £10 from Amazon or Google stores.
Live streaming of Mass can be accessed from Northampton Cathedral via the Diocese of Northampton website and various other websites including the Vatican and Walsingham.

I continue to say Mass for the Parish, daily in Our Lady’s Church with a voice loud enough to encourage the angels and saints to join with me!

Pastoral Letter from Bishop David

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. These words of the Apostle Paul root us firmly where we belong, in the grace and peace of God. Things are not turning out . . . .

Live streaming of Mass from
Northampton Cathedral

Letter from
the President and Vice-President
of the Bishops' Conference