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St Michael and All Angels

Woodchurch

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.

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I am the bread of life.

Whoever comes to Me

will never hunger,

and whoever believes in Me

will never thirst.

CONTACT DETAILS

CONTACT FORM





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OUR CHURCH

Telephone

0151 522  0231

email

saintmichaelandallangels@hotmail.com


website

www.stmaaa.co.uk

ST MICHAEL & ALL ANGELS

St Michael and All Angels

New Hey Road
Woodchurch

Wirral

CH49 5LE


Parish Priest

Reverend Father Chris Matthews

Deacons:    Reverend Patrick Regan

         Reverend Paul D’Ambrogio

         Reverend John Birch

    Sister:    Sr Mary Hill CSN


St.Michael

and All Angels

Woodchurch

Wirral


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

Sunday

11am

Mass

Monday

9:15am

Mass

Tuesday

9:15am

Word and Communion

Wednesday

09:15am

Word and Communion

Thursday

9:15am

Mass

Friday

9:15am

Word and Communion

Saturday

9am

6pm

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


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Registered Charity Number 234025


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St Michael & All Angels

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Headteacher: Mrs S Ralph

New Hey Rd

CH49 5LE

0151 677 4088

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Mass Readings

  Words to Reflect…. Trust 


The beatitudes confront us with choices concerning temporal or earthly possessions. They challenge us to purify our hearts, to embrace the values of God that are completely opposed to those of the world. The things that we think we need to be happy and successful are exposed as being of no value at all in God's economy. The beatitudes provide us with the heart of the Christian way of life. It takes complete trust to live the beatitudes. Jesus is asking us for that complete trust in God, no matter what our condition in life. Jesus did not say that it was wrong to own things, have enough to eat or a comfortable home, but his sermon reminds us that this should not be our sole focus in life. What steps might you take this week to focus more attention on spiritual values?


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Clare Williams clare.williams@dioceseofshrewsbury.org 0780 341 4669