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St Michael and All Angels


Did you know …………St Michael and All Angels was one of the first Vatican II-inspired churches in the Diocese, designed to focus the attention of all who entered on the central altar. Its design was also a response to the need to provide a landmark at the end of a long axial avenue through the centre of the planned settlement of Woodchurch. The form of the building with its open plan, high tent-like roof clad in aluminium, and horizontal base of ribbed concrete was a bold and innovative statement that symbolised the progressive spirit enshrined in the new liturgy. It is a Grade II listed building.

The parish of St Michael and All Angels was founded to serve the Catholic community of Woodchurch and Prenton in 1952, and for the first four years, the Mass was said at the chapel of Landican Cemetery. After the opening of the school buildings at Woodchurch in 1956, the school hall became the centre of parochial activity until the opening of the church in September 1965. The building was awarded an RIBA Bronze Medal in 1967.

The church was designed by Richard O’Mahony of the F. X. Velarde Partnership, and was commissioned in 1962. The site of the church at the end of a wide avenue almost one mile long through the planned settlement of Woodchurch, led to the concept of a building with a certain dominance, placed symmetrically on the axis of the avenue.

Dominance is achieved by the lines of the great tented roof, which springs from the four corners of the nave in a series of folded planes that culminate in a point above the altar. The roof, which is steel framed and clad in sheet aluminium, rises to a height of 26 metres and is louvred on the west face to throw light onto the sanctuary below. A horizontal slot in the east face of the roof casts light into the Blessed Sacrament chapel. The enclosing walls are of ribbed reinforced concrete, with the roof lifted above a horizontal clerestory to provide a sensation that it is floating.

On entering the church, attention is centred on the altar, set in a spacious sanctuary and lit from above. The congregation gathers on three sides of the altar, the main nave, and two transepts of unequal size, one used by the choir, and the other now a day chapel. Behind the sanctuary, and separated by a textured concrete screen within inset glass blocks is the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, whose altar supports the tabernacle. The tabernacle, which is of silver, was designed by the late F. X. Velarde, and was made so as to be clearly visible on entering the church.

The altars, font and lectern are constructed of Mourne granite, with polished tops but left matt on the vertical surfaces. A black brick tower to the west of the day chapel, framed by glazed slots in the roof, was intended to act as an organ loft, but the organ was never built. Instead a nineteenth century organ in a discordant Gothic organ case was introduced in the 1990s. A small concrete base projects from the lower part of the tower's north wall and is surmounted by a life-size sculpture by Norman Dilworth entitled 'Mother and Child' with gold-coloured, textured, abstract backdrop panels behind.

The church was designed to accommodate 650 people, and is the largest Catholic Church in Wirral. The contractors were Mohin of Bebington, and the cost excluding fees was £75,000. All the sanctuary and sacristy furniture and fittings were designed by the architect and cost a further £6,900.

Sources of information –

“Taking Stock – Catholic Churches England and Wales” Website

“British Listed Buildings” Website  

-edited by John Birch

Local Pastoral Area Web Site

 St Joseph, Birkenhead.



I am the bread of life.

Whoever comes to Me

will never hunger,

and whoever believes in Me

will never thirst.



Are you human?



0151 232 4134




St Michael and All Angels

New Hey Road


CH49 5LE

Parish Priest

Fr. Chris Matthews

Deacons:   Patrick Regan &

        Paul D’Ambrogio

Sister:       Mary Hill CSN


and All Angels



Love the Lord with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind... and love your neighbour as yourself









Word and Communion



Word and Communion






Word and Communion




Word and Communion

Vigil Mass

Regular Services

Morning Prayer of the Church (at both churches):  9.00am, Monday to Friday.

Charismatic Prayer (St Joseph’s) Friday 7:30 – 9:00pm. ———————————————————————————

Holy Hour  (St Michael’s)  1st Friday of the month at 7pm

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament   

(St Joseph’s) Saturday 11am to 12 noon

(St Michael’s) Weds 8.30am to 9am

Sacrament of Reconciliation   

(St Joseph’s) 11am -12noon on Saturdays.   

(St Michael’s)  5.15-5.45pm on Saturdays.

Syro-Malabar Rite Mass

every 2nd & 3rd Sunday of the Month  at 3.30pm in St Joseph’s Upton


Usual Mass times

Check newsletter for variations

Holy Family 2017[963].pdf

Download Full Newsletter with mass times

The Church under construction 1965

Ladies Group

Welcome Ministry

Minister Rotas

Saturday Mass Sunday Mass
Holy Week services leaflet now available on line, find it next to the newsletter.

Shrewsbury Diocese -

Registered Charity Number 234025

Saints Club Winners February   1st St Charles Lwanga                 Teresa Devon    2nd Our Lady of Walsingham        Maeve Regan    3rd St Kevin                                Doreen Joyce    £20

St Michael & All Angels

Catholic Primary School

Headteacher: Mrs S Ralph

New Hey Rd

CH49 5LE

0151 677 4088

Music Ministry

St Vincent De Paul

Photo Gallery

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Mass Readings

Holy Week 2018

Service times

Father Chris writes... just a few words to say a massive THANK YOU for all your greetings, cards, and gifts for my 40th birthday last Sunday. I am truly humbled by your generosity and kindness. Thank you too to all those who were able to join us for the party in the Centre, thank you to Cathy Rigg and 'her team' for the amazing food and thank you to Margaret Boyle for the fabulous cake! It made turning 40 all the better!!!

Holy Week This Sunday marks the beginning of the great week. Please take note of the times and venues for our Holy Week events and the Sacred Triduum. The Triduum is the three days from Holy Thursday to Holy Saturday and are the most important days in our Catholic calendar. Do make every effort to come along and celebrate the story of our salvation and the great things the Lord Jesus has done for you. This year the Easter Vigil is at the earlier time of 8pm (it has to begin after dark) so please come and join us.

Looking Ahead why not pick up a copy of Wednesday Word from the back of church and take an opportunity to reflect upon next weekends scriptures.

A Sedar Meal On Monday at 7:00pm in St Michael’s there is an opportunity to reflect upon the Jewish Passover Meal that Jesus sat down to celebrate with the disciples.

Chrism Mass This year the Mass is being held at Shrewsbury Cathedral this Wednesday, 28th March, beginning at 7:00pm. All are welcome.

On Maundy Thursday 5.30 - 6.30 pm, in the Parish Centre Children’s Liturgy symbolism of Hot Cross Buns

Rehearsal at St Michael’s for Altar servers at 6.30pm

Good Friday Remember that Good Friday is a day of fasting and abstinence. Morning Prayer at St Michael’s at 9.15am.

There is a Walk of Witness on the Woodchurch starting from Holy Cross church at 10am and in Birkenhead town centre, starting at the Salvation Army Citadel in Salisbury Street at 10.30am.

There is a rehearsal at 11:30am for altar servers in St Joseph’s.

At 12 noon there is a Children’s Stations of the Cross at St Michael’s.

At 3.00 pm the Passion Service will take place in both churches. Children’s Liturgy at St Joseph’s

At 6.30pm there is a Tenebrae Service in St Michael’s.

At 8pm there are Prayers at the Cross in St Joseph’s

Holy Saturday Morning Prayer and Office at 10am in St Joseph’s.

11.30am: Rehearsal for all altar servers in St Joseph’s.

12noon: “Swieconka” ie. the Blessing of Easter food baskets for the Polish community.

Repository: Saint Michael’s have Easter cards, and First Holy Communion cards and gifts available.

CTS The CTS book stand at the back of Saint Joseph’s church has been restocked: please do have a look—ideal Easter gifts!

Children’s Missals: There are now a number of children’s Missals available at the back of both churches to borrow during Mass. Why not borrow one and help your child grow in understanding of the Mass?

Saint Michael’s SVP Last chance for Tickets for our Grand Easter Raffle, with the star prize being a giant Easter Egg. The draw will be held after Mass this Sunday morning (Palm Sunday).

Easter Offerings Thank you in anticipation for your support of the Easter collection. This goes into the parish stipend fund to pay Father Chris' stipend during the year, so please be as generous as you can. Don't forget the annual Good Friday collection in aid of the Holy Places in Jerusalem.

Deepening our Faith—Knowing Jesus Better are opportunities to learn more about our shared faith and to grow as disciples of the Lord. Throughout our lives we should develop in our relationship with Jesus Christ. Please see the flyers and poster at the back of church and put the dates in your diary. The Creed is a six session look at the profession of faith starting on Wednesday 18 April at 7.30pm in Saint Joseph's Parish Centre. There will be another opportunity to join us for Alpha from Thursday 19th April at 2pm in Saint Michael's Parish Room. Why not seize these opportunities?

1918 to 2018 This year is the hundredth anniversary of the end of World War I. Near the War Memorial in Saint Joseph’s Church you will notice the silhouette of a man sitting on one of our benches. He is there to remind us of those who never returned. ‘At the going down of the sun and in the morning we will remember them.’

Fish 'n' Chip Supper Come and celebrate Saint George at Saint Michael & All Angels on Friday 27th April from 7.30pm. Tickets £6 to include musical entertainment provided by Blackthorn Root. Bring your own drinks!

Save the date! Father Denis McBride and David Wells are coming to our Local Pastoral Area on Saturday 5th May to talk about Discipleship. The day begins at 11am and will be finished for 2.30pm See poster for more details.

Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes 2018 This year marks the 160th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady to Bernadette in Lourdes. The Diocesan Pilgrimage will take place from 26 July-3 August overland and 27 July-2 August by air. Brochures/booking forms can be downloaded from the Pilgrimage Website or from the Pilgrimage Office: St Alban's, 30 Mill Lane, Wallasey, CH44 5UD.

Calling all Gift Aid Donors Please collect your NEW OFFERTORY BOXES are at the back of church. If as a tax payer you are not enrolled in the gift aid scheme you might consider the benefits the church would gain by doing so. There is no extra expense to you in time or money. We can just claim back the tax you have already paid on the money that you contribute

Caritas Shrewsbury requires a Volunteer Co-ordinator. Application packs can also be downloaded from our website Closing date for applications is the 4th April 2018.

Deputy Director of Schools (Salary circa £65,000 - £70,000)

The Diocese of Shrewsbury is looking to appoint a full-time, permanent Deputy Director of Schools, who will support the Director of Schools. Further details and an application form are available from the Diocesan website and completed applications should be returned to

Closing date 13 April 2018.

Diocesan Symposium on The Eucharist The Symposium will now take place on Saturday 9th June and Sunday 10th June. Please put these dates in your diary! Info to follow.

Wirral Foodbank For those who contribute to the foodbank, please leave your donations at the back of church.

Churches Together In Saint Joseph’s parish we are praying this week for those in the following roads:

Dickens Ave, Dickens Close, Durley Dr, Harrowby Rd South, Harrowby Rd, Hawthorne Rd & Heathbank Rd.



Please pray for the repose of the souls of

Eric James Leeds whose funeral service is on Wednesday 28th March at 12:30 at Landican

Sean Joseph Brady whose funeral service is on Tuesday 3rd April at 2:00 at Landican South Chapel

Teresa Dobbing whose funeral service is on Wednesday 4th April at 9:30 at Landican South Chapel

James Christopher McDonagh whose funeral service is on Wednesday 4th April at 10:30 at Landican South Chapel

Terrence Grundy whose funeral service is on Wednesday 4th April at 12:30 in Saint Michael’s

Tommy Moore whose requiem is in St Michaels’ at 11am on Friday 6th April