- I wish to get my child baptised/Christened. How do I go about it?
- I would like my child to go to a Catholic school. Does he/she have to be baptised first?
- I would like to attend Mass, but am afraid my baby/toddler may become restless. Would we be made welcome?
- My child is at a non-Catholic school. Can he/she join your Sacramental Programme for First Holy Communion?
- I may be interested in becoming a Catholic as an adult. What is the first step?
- My elderly relative is housebound in your parish. Can he/she receive Holy Communion at home?
- I am going into hospital. Can a visit from a priest be arranged?
- What times are weekday Masses, and where are they when the church door seems to be locked?
- What time is midnight Mass at Christmas?
- How do I volunteer to help in the parish?
- Do you have disabled facilities at your churches?
- My eyesight is poor. Can I have a large-print version of the newsletter?
- I asked for something three weeks ago and I have not received a reply. Why not?
- I have a complaint. What should I do about it?
A: Baptism is about bringing your child into the Family of God. Your first step is simply to come along to Mass at the weekend and make yourself known to the priest (or the Parish Sister) afterwards. Sunday's Masses are probably the best as there are better family facilities (expecially Children's Liturgy at Holy Cross) and refreshments are served after Sunday morning Mass at Holy Cross (and as announced at St Mary's), so you can get to know some of that "Family of God" that you are asking for your child to join.
A: The simple answer is "no" - whilst Catholic schools give priority to baptised Catholic children, there may well be other places which are available to non-Catholic children. The important thing to remember is that Baptism is a life-commitment, not simply a ticket to a Catholic school. Contact the schools for full details of their admissions policies.
Q: I would like to attend Mass, but am afraid my baby/toddler may become restless. Would we be made welcome?
A: Yes. We welcome families at our Masses, and this means we must be tolerant, within reason, of a certain amount of noise from children. But if they need a break, we have a space in the foyer at the back of St Mary's, and a box with children's books etc at the back of Holy Cross, where you can take them for a short "time out" (but do, please, supervise them at all times). If you really need somewhere soundproof for a while, the foyers of both churches are comfortable and heated in the winter.
Q: My child is at a non-Catholic school. Can he/she join your Sacramental Programme for First Holy Communion?
A: Yes. Most hospitals have a chaplaincy service, but you will need to let the nursing staff know you would like a visit from the chaplain - they are unlikely to ask you if you do not speak to them first. If you would like your own parish priest to come and visit, again just let him know.
A: Always a popular question!! This will normally be well before midnight on Christmas Eve, but the best thing to do is simply check the newsletter near the time.
A: Holy Cross Church is better equipped in this regard at present, following recent building works, but we hope to make improvements in the near future at St Mary's too. Both churches have a loop system for the hard of hearing, and ramped access. Holy Cross also has accessible toilet facilities.
A: Sorry! We do make mistakes, and will not be offended by a reminder.