The Roman Catholic Parish of Lady, Star of the Sea, Weymouth, Dorset, UK

Our Parish Groups

In his book 'After Virtue' the philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre compares the circumstances of those persons today, having traditional beliefs about virtue, to the men and women in the so-called "Dark Ages." He argues that we are in a new dark age, and this time the barbarians are not at the gates, they have been ruling us for some time. MacIntyre's book was written in 1984; since then our age has become even darker.

According to ++Charles Chaput, until recently Archbishop of Philadelphia, (click here to read his talk "Law and Morality in Public Discourse"), MacIntyre is suggesting that one of the ways we might begin to live more fruitfully in a world that seems so deeply conflicted is to create parishes, seminaries, clubs, colleges and families that are real schools of sanctification. These would be vital in building up society, changing the culture, and trying to build a renewed sense of Christian community.

In this regard, Parish Groups therefore are an important witness to the Christian life and Catholic Teaching.

Finding the Groups in the Parish

Click on one of the icons below to learn more about what a group does.

(Meeting times and venues for ‘Holy Hour’,‘The Charismatic Prayer Group’, ‘Meditation’ and ‘Scripture Sharing Groups’ are listed together under the ‘Prayer Groups’ Icon)

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One World Group (1WG)

We are a lively group of about 30 members. Our main aim is to raise money for CAFOD and other charities and to achieve this we organise at least one fund‐raising activity per month. Our activities last year included a monthly coffee morning with cakes and bric‐a‐brac, two Auctions, St Patrick’s Night, a Quiz Night, a Sea Front Stall and other events.

We find that most of these events have a social character to them which we feel benefits the parish and the local community. Coming events are advertised well in advance in the Parish Newsletter.

We are also involved in issues such as Live Simply, Fair‐trade, and Trade Justice. We also organise the Family Fast Day collections.

To download the minutes of the most recent meeting, please click here. More information can be obtained from the Secretary:

John Jenkins: email

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Apostleship of the Sea (AOS)

95% of British imports and exports travel by sea. 150,000 merchant ships visit Britain each year. Over one million men and women earn their living onboard ship yet many Britons are unaware of their existence.

Seafarers are a hidden workforce separated from home and community. They originate from all over the world but many are now recruited in countries where labour is cheap. Seafaring is a challenging profession in which harsh weather conditions, long hours and minimal manning levels combine with the psychological pressures of loneliness and isolation.

To most people seafarers are invisible. But they are our brothers and sisters and the presence of Christ in our midst.

Seafarers often work away from home for up to 12 months and face loneliness, danger and exploitation. In today’s global maritime industry, turn around in port is very short, putting seafarers under stress and limiting time ashore

AOS GB offers pastoral and practical support to the seafarers who visit our shores. As part of the international network of the Apostleship of the Sea, under the patronage of Our Lady Stella Maris, we work to alleviate the loneliness of seafarers by extending a hand of friendship.

Our pastoral teams of port chaplains and ship visitors approach seafarers as friends, whatever their origin and beliefs. AOS reaches out to all seafarers in the name of Christ and enables Catholics among them to attend Mass on board ship or in a local parish.

Through effective Christian witness, personal contact and the distribution of Christian literature, AOS works to encourage Christian life aboard ship.

For more information, see our parish webpage AOS news which gives news of the work done by the local group.

For details of AOS in the UK go to our National Website

Your local representatives are

Ship visitor Mark Kemis-Bettey, Tel:

Ian Hollows Tel:

Allen Ford Email: , Tel:

Contact either of these to find out about volunteering and support activities.

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The Brownies

The Brownies meet in St Augustine’s Hall every Wednesday (except school holidays) between 5:30pm and 7 pm.

For information please contact Lorna Charnock, email: or . Lorna’s telephone number is . Alternatively, Joan Heslop can be reached on

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The Catenian Association is an international brotherhood of Catholic laymen, who meet once a month in local branches known as ‘circles’. The Catenian Association was founded in 1908.

To join us you must be, and remain a practising member of the Church.

Joining gives you the following opportunities:

  • Meet other Catholics who share your Catholic values, belief and practice
  • Become part of a community offering lifelong support and friendship
  • Mix with other Catholics in business, commerce, public service and the professions
  • Be part of a group that helps each other and their families in all aspects of life
  • Provide your family with opportunities for friendship and social activity.

Meetings take place on the first Thursday of each month in the Avenue Restaurant, Weymouth College

For more information email our membership officer and/or we will be delighted to welcome you to attend one of our an evening meals/meetings by way of an introduction to The Catenians (without cost and no commitment on your part)

The President for 2021 is Vern Palmer

For further information visit our our National Website

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The Catholic Women’s League (CWL)

The Catholic Women’s League, founded in 1906 by Margaret Fletcher is an international organisation with 5 million members. We are a registered charity.

The objectives of the C.W.L. are to promote and support (under the guidance of the Hierarchy) charitable works at parish, diocesan, national and international levels and to ensure Catholic representation of those interests on major bodies. St. Margaret Clitherow is the patron saint of the League.

Internationally, the C.W.L. is a founder member of the World Union of Catholic Women's Organisations (WUCWO) which brings together 36 million women of all nations who work for the advancement of women and supports Human Rights worldwide. WUCWO has consultative status at the Vatican and is an N.G.O. at the United Nations.

Our meetings are held in St Joseph’s Parish Hall, Stavordale Road on the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 2.00 p.m. New Members are always welcome. For details, please contact our Secretary, Mrs June Rust, telephone

For reports of our meetings, see our Parish Web Page

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Eucharistic Ministers of Holy Communion


The highpoint of Catholic worship is the celebration of the Eucharist, for in it Christ associates his Church and all her members with his sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving offered once for all upon the cross to his Father. The culmination of the Eucharist is our reception of the gifts of the Lord's Body and Blood in Holy Communion.

At Mass it is important that the connection between our Communion and the Sacrifice of the Mass is made clear. One of the ways in which this is achieved is by Holy Communion being distributed by the priest celebrant. Other priests or deacons will assist the priest, if necessary. When there not enough other ‘ordinary’ ministers present, then the priest celebrant may be assisted by ‘extraordinary’ ministers. The word ‘extraordinary’ is used to distinguish the ‘extraordinary’ minister from the ‘ordinary’ or ‘normal’ minister, i.e. Bishops, Priests and Deacons.

Eucharistic Ministers taking Holy Communion to the Sick and Housebound in our Parish do so after the 6pm Mass on Saturday evening and the 8am and 10am Masses on the Sunday. They are all asked to go straight from the Church to the recipients. All those people receiving Holy Communion from us have a prayer book, designed and produced in the parish, which includes a short service and has, in addition, other prayers which they may like to use. If those Ministers going out after the 8am Mass have recipients in both nursing homes and their own homes they are usually asked to go to the nursing homes first, as those people in the nursing homes will have been got ready by the staff; those in their own homes, possibly living on their own, will have greater difficulty getting ready early.

Currently we take Holy Communion to more than 30 people on Sunday. One of our deacons takes Communion to an additional 9 people some of whom live on Portland. The lay Ministers operate in teams of 4 working to a rota provided for them. It has to be said of them that they are excellent in arranging to cover for each other so that no recipients are without Holy Communion. They all see this as a very important Ministry. All lay Ministers are aware of the need to ensure that any request from a recipient for a visit from the priest must be given to our Parish Priest immediately. They are also aware of the need to report any deterioration in health so that the sacrament of the sick can be administered quickly.

For the full version of this article, please click here

If you are interested in becoming an Eucharistic Minister of Holy Communion, please contact Tony Adams in the Parish Office.

Tony can be reached between 9am and 12 noon, from Monday to Thursday on or email

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The Flower Group


This small group arrange the flowers during the liturgical year for the glory of God and the adornment of His church. We have a rota and would welcome newcomers.

For further details please ring Anne Bywater on

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The Knights of St Columba

The Knights of St Columba are an Order of Catholic Gentlemen dedicated to the service of the Church and fellow man.

The Order exists to support the mission of the Catholic Church and at the same time to work for the spiritual and material good of its members and their families. It is non political and democratic. Members of the Order are part of the Lay Apostolate.

Any practising Catholic man over the age of 16 years is welcome to join our organisation. See the link to our national website for more details.

Currently the officers of the Weymouth Branch of the Knights of St Columba are:

Grand Knight: John Jenkins, email address

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The Mercy Associates

Mercy Associates

The Mercy Associates meet at 2.30 pm at the Convent on the first Sunday of every month (with a break in August).

The meeting consists of a Talk followed by time in the Chapel.

The meeting ends with tea.

To learn more about the Mercy Associates, visit the information page on the Mercy Associates Website

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The Mother's Circle of the Infant Jesus of Prague

Infant Jesus of Prague

The Mother’s Circle of the Infant Jesus of Prague was founded in 1963 by Alma Stocklin, the wife of an American scientist working in NATO. Mother’s Circle 1 increased in numbers and by 1978 Mother’s Circle 2 was formed.

This is a group of ladies (Mums, Grans, whatever!) who meet the first Tuesday of each month, the meetings taking place at one of the member’s homes.

No fundraising is done. It is a confidential forum for members to talk about anything or everything.

Meetings normally start at 8pm. There is no ‘joining’ – just turn up on the night.

The Rosary is said and a relevant reading discussed.

The address appears in the Newsletter each month, normally with a contact phone number for anyone wanting to find out more.

Otherwise, those interested could email Judith Boichot at , telephone or Angela Smith , telephone

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Music Groups

It would be wonderful if you could join us in lifting up peoples’ hearts to worshipping God.

To join the Choir at 8 a.m. Mass on Sunday morning, please contact Sister Cecily at the Convent of Mercy

This music group meets for practice on Tuesdays at 5.45 pm and on Fridays at 11.45 a.m. (after the Friday Mass)

For the 6 pm Vigil Mass, contact Jane Ayles on

For the 10 am Mass on Sundays, please contact Sarita on

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Prayer Groups

The following Prayer Groups meeting regularly in the Parish

Holy Hour is held every Wednesday (except in August) at the Convent between 8pm and 9pm. There is Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament with Readings for the upcoming Sunday’s Mass

Contact: the Convent of Mercy

The Charismatic Prayer Group meets every Thursday in the Parish Hall from 7:30 - 9pm.

Meditation Groups There are two groups meeting on Monday in the Convent, one at 2.30pm, the other at 7pm.

Meditation Groups are affiliated to the World Community for Christian Meditation UK.

John Main rediscovered the spiritual practice of meditation in the Christian tradition, promoted now by Lawrence Freeman O.S.B. who writes: "the important aim in Christian meditation is to allow God's mysterious and silent presence within us to become more and more not only a reality but the reality which gives meaning and purpose to everything we do, everything we are."

Contact: Sr Kate

Scripture Sharing There are three Scripture Sharing Groups that meet weekly.

Scripture Sharing

Wednesday morning, at 10.45 - 11.45 in the Parish Hall. Contact: Sr Jacqueline

Wednesday evening, at 19.30 - 20.30 at the home of Cynthia Drinkhill (Dorchester Road area) Contact:

Thursday morning, at 11.00 - 12.00 noon at the home of Ann Liles (Preston area) Contact:

The groups follow the Liturgical Calendar to read and reflect on the scripture readings of the Sundays throughout the year. They invite us to ponder on the teaching of Jesus, the issues of life and help us to grow in faith. They are the food for the journey which we pray for in the Our Father and they prepare us for a fuller participation of the Eucharist.

Contact Sr Jacqueline if you would like help to start a group in your area.

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Preparation for the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion

Preparation for the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Communion for all Catholic children in the Weymouth and Portland area takes place in St Augustine's School and is parish based for those children who do not attend a Catholic school.

The Programme used is “God’s Greatest Gift” comprising of a personal workbook for the children and a helpful guide for parents. The course is split into ten themes and each one links to the Mass, the source and summit of our Catholic faith. Each theme takes a month to work through, apart from Forgiveness/Peace (two months) during which the children are prepared to receive the Sacrament of Penance during Lent.

In addition to the work at St Augustine’s School and in the Parish, beginning this year all the children preparing, with their group of dedicated Catechists, will come together for one session a month at the Convent of Mercy, learning through a variety of interesting activities such as listening, role play, quiet prayer, stories from Scripture and art work.

The parents will meet together each month at the same time as the children, supported by the Clergy/Catechist in order to deepen their faith and work with their children at home.

At the end of each theme, parents and children celebrate together at our 10am Sunday Mass so parishioners too can pray for them and support them on their journey of faith.

The children receive their First Holy Communion on or around the feast of Corpus Christi each year.

The Course Coordinator is Tony Adams.

Tony can be reached between 9am and 12 noon, from Monday to Thursday on or email

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Sao Paolo Children – Nest of Hope

St Patricks Missionary Society

In 2012 four parishioner friends attended the yearly meeting with St. Patrick's Missionaries at Buckfast Abbey. We met Fr. Eddie McGettrick who had spent all is priestly life in Sao Paulo in Brazil but now he had been brought to England for four years to run their office in Sussex.

We heard from Father that Sao Paolo was one of the poorest places, next to one of the richest places on earth. The people had makeshift homes, some proper houses needed repair, there was no work for them, and there were no proper roads and no sanitation. There was no health care. As he was speaking it was obvious that Father Eddie loved the people he lived with and did not want to leave them.

We watched a video - made by another organisation - of where Father lived among the people and it affected all of us - the conditions they lived in, the little they had, how much they loved their Priest and how happy they were.

We decided on the way home that we had to do something to help - but what? We had heard that Father had started "The Nest of Hope" for one day a week for physically and mentally handicapped children - it is the only help they get. For it to succeed we realised he would need financial help. As usual we knew we could make money from a jumble sale. So with the help of friends we raised our first donation. The money gradually mounted up and Father then knew the Nest was safe.

Three years later, back in Brazil he was able to expand and included days for young people and then the elder. Many friends in and out of the Parish help with to raise money with 'New to you Sales' and donate new handbags, new clothes, ornaments, costume jewellery sometimes 'good jewellery' and unwanted presents. A member of the original group and her son made professional greetings cards which continue to raise money. The costume jewellery made £2000 over the years and was bought by parishioners after every 11 o'clock Mass.

The small group we started with has changed over the last year as we have aged but money is still being raised by a dedicated few, always with the help of others in the Parish. Fr. Eddie has been in England twice since returning to San Paulo and comes to see us. He always tells the people in The Nest about us and they have a special prayer for us.

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St Vincent de Paul (SVP)

The aim of the group is to bring social justice and the friendship of true charity to all those in need.

There is no need which is outside of our concern – be it sickness or disability, mental or physical; family problems, social or economic; loneliness in old age: the alcoholic, the drug addict, the social misfit.

Our work is the Gospel message in action: "I was hungry, I was thirsty, I was a stranger, I was naked, I was sick, I was in prison"

Meetings take place once per month on the last Thursday – visits to clients are normally weekly

For details or if you wish to volunteer, please contact Jim Logan email

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