Guidance for Parishioners as Saint John Henry Newman Parish Churches reopen for Public Masses

In our Parish public Mass has resumed! Below is full guidance about behaviour in our Churches and before, during and after masses.

For latest updates just read our NEWSLETTER. You can open the latest newsletter using the link at the top of this page.

Please, wear face coverings when you attend Mass in our churches. Thank you.

Capacity per church

St Wulstan’s:

  • 44 Faithful = 36 single seats & x2 housegolds (up to 4 members each)
  • 2 Stewards
  • 2 Clergy
  • Total: 48

Our Lady’s:

  • x2  households (up to 3 members)
  • x4 households (up to 2 members)
  • 2 Stewards
  • 2 Clergy
  • Total: 48

In our Parish public Mass resumed from Sat 11th July with the Vigil Mass at 5pm at Our Lady of Grace. Many Catholic churches are already open for private prayer and the same safety measures will be in place plus more specific guidelines for Masses, funerals, weddings and baptisms.

To ease concerns regarding overcrowding, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales have maintained the dispensation for the obligation to attend Mass on Sundays and the Diocese of Northampton has asked Mass goers to attend during the week and on Saturdays rather than busy Sunday mornings.

Mass Times from Sat 11th July

Sunday Masses:

5:00pm Saturday Vigil Holy Mass at Our Lady of Grace

9:00am Sunday Holy Mass at St Wulstan’s

11:30am Sunday Holy Mass Our Lady of Grace

During the Week:

9.30am Monday Holy Mass at Our Lady of Grace

9.30am Tuesday Holy Mass at St Wulstan’s

7.30pm Thursday Holy Mass at St Wulstan’s

9.30am Friday Holy Mass at Our Lady of Grace

Guidance on choosing which Mass to attend

  • If you do not work during the week please try to attend one of the weekday Masses.

After the first week or so these Mass times might be reviewed to accommodate eventual pastoral needs that might arise.

  • We are not introducing a booking system yet but if we need one, we will try to work out something. As we reopen for Mass, please let us be patient with one another, especially with those more vulnerable.
  • If you have received a letter from either the Government or the NHS, inviting you to maintain shielding and avoid public places, please continue to do so.
  • No one is to set out to Mass if they have any of the symptoms of Covid-19 such as a fever, a sore throat, a cough or a loss of a sense of taste or smell.


Before Mass starts

  • If you arrive by car, please park your car 2m apart from other cars if you can. This will not always be possible, especially at St Wulstan’s, so don’t worry.
  • As you approach the church entrance please respect 2 metres social distancing and the markings on the ground near the door.
  • When you arrive at the church entrance please be prepared to find that a steward may refuse you entry if the congregation is already at the maximum permitted capacity. You will be asked whether you or any within your household or “social bubble” have any Covid-19 symptoms.
  • In the Narthex please use the hand sanitiser provided.
  • The interior of the church will have been thoroughly cleaned before and after each Mass, each private prayer session and any other service. As far as possible please avoid touching surfaces inside the building.
  • There will be no newsletters, hymn books, holy water fonts nor Mass response cards
  • The repository will not be available.
  • A steward will guide you to your seat. Please avoid moving around the church and do not spend much time by the candle stands. If you would like to light a candle, inform the steward and do it before you are shown to your seat.
  • Inside the church follow the one-way system highlighted on the floor by arrows.
  • Please do not touch statues and do not access the sanctuary or any other room attached to the church.
  • Toilets are closed and will not be available for use.
  • The side rooms at OLG and the Parish Room at St Wulstan’s will not be available

During Mass

  • Remain by your seat when you stand or kneel.
  • The seating area will be just bare wooden pews (at St Wulstan’s) and plastic (at Our Lady of Grace). If you need a cushion, please bring one from home. At OLG your cushion could be used as a kneeler too.

  • There will be no singing either by a choir or by members of the congregation
  • Please be patient and cooperate with guidance from stewards and the Priest who will be acting to protect the safety of everyone.

Liturgy of the Word

  • We are going to have just one reader per Mass, when possible. There will be no rotas. Fr Benedetto will call for a show of hands and choose a reader before Mass starts.
  • The reader will be supplied with single-use gloves and should avoid touching the microphone or the Lectionary, apart for page turning.

Mass continues normally

  • There will be no procession of the gifts
  • There will be no collection
  • There will be a basket at the exit for your donation.

Liturgy of the Eucharist

  • There will be no exchange of the Sign of Peace so the congregation will say together the Lamb of God.
  • After we all say “Lord I am not worthy…”, as the Priest holds up the Sacred Host and Chalice and says: “The Body and Blood of Christ!”, the whole congregation will reply “Amen!”


  • The Priest will receive Communion as usual. The Deacon and extraordinary ministers (if there are any) and the whole congregation may receive Communion.
  • Communion will be only under one kind.
  • If you are receiving Communion please stand at your seat with arms at full stretch, hands positioned one above the other with their palms upward and flat as possible.

Wait for the Priest or for the extraordinary minister to put the Sacred Host on your hand before you pick it up and bring it to your mouth. Consume any little pieces that might be still on your hand, before kneeling or sitting down.

  • NB: there will be no blessings at communion as the blessing at the end of Mass is the only one needed.
  • Please do not light candles at this stage.
  • After the blessing, please wait for the priest to leave the church. A steward will prompt you when to approach the exit.

After Mass

  • Please spend as little time as possible in church and please respect 2m social distancing as you leave.
  • Do not expect to leave by the door you used on your way in.
  • The way out at Our Lady’s is the fire exit opposite to the normal entrance.
  • The way out at St Wulstan’s is the fire exit on the left-hand side near the statue of the Sacred Heart.
  • Sanitise your hands using the sanitiser provided by the exit door.

The use of Masks or face coverings

• As we are maintaining the 2 metres distance rule in our churches, there is no enforcement of wearing a face covering. The parish provides face masks only for clergy, extraordinary ministers, stewards and cleaners. If you want to wear a face covering in church, you are free to do so, but bring it from home.


  • You will find a basket by the exit door for any cash or envelope donation.

Live streaming from St Wulstan’s church in the Parish of St John Henry Newman

Sunday Holy Mass at 9.00am

Tuesday Holy Mass at 10.00am

Thursday Holy Mass at 7.30pm

Please, check Newsletter for Mass times on weekdays and eventual changes