More about our church
There has been a place of worship in The Avenue since 1934. The dual purpose Hall was used as a Church for Sunday Services and for Community events during the remainder of the week. Parishioners decide that a permanent Church was needed and the first turf was cut on 3rd May 1953 with the Foundation Stone laid in December the same year. The completed Church was consecrated on 8th December 1954 by the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Geoffrey Fisher.
A statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary located by the Baptistry is carved from solid oak and is a replica of that in the Parish Church of Tideswell near Bakewell in Derbyshire. This was first seen by Mr Rev & Mrs Waghorne (1st Vicar). The statue was presented to the Church jointly by Mrs L. Savage and The Mother’s Union.
The sign of the fish, a link with the early Christian Church is to be found in the Altar steps. They are carved from Purbeck Marble and contain what is thought to be the fossils of ancient fish reputed to be over 100 million years old.
The Lady Chapel of the Annunciation was dedicated on the 11th December 1962 by Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Michael Ramsey. The Chapel contains two original Altar panels from the dual purpose Church/Hall.
St Mary’s is a joint benefice with St Francis of Assisi, which is located just off West Wickham High Street.
List of Incumbents since 1942
Fr. F.C.Waghorne 1942 – 1964
Rev. Robert Skillern 1964 – 1978 (Ret’d)
Rev. Francis Madge 1978 – 2000 (Ret’d)
Rev. Canon Merv McKinney 2000 – 2015 (Ret'd)
Rev. Hazel O'Sullivan 2015 - to date
8am - 1st & 3rd Sundays of the month Holy Communion
8am - 2nd & 4th Sundays of the month Holy Communion at St Francis
9.15a.m. Holy Communion with Sunday Club
2nd Sundays of the month
9.15a.m. Family Service
On the last Sunday of the month, St Mary's & St Francis will alternately host a joint Holy Communion Service at 10am.
The 8.00a.m. Holy Communion Service will be held at the Church not hosting the joint Service.
Sunday Club meets each Sunday at 9.15a.m. except the 2nd Sunday which is a special Family orientated Service.
Tuesdays at 7:30am - Morning Prayers
Wednesdays at 10:45am - Holy Communion at St Francis
2nd Friday of each month - Messy Church at 3:45pm
The Church Hall
The Church Hall is available for private parties as well as dance or drama lessons. However no discos or loud late night events are permitted in order to respect the peace of the neighbours.
The Hall has a kitchen with cooker, microwave, water heater, hot water urn crockery and cutlery. There are 17 trestle tables and 100 stackable chairs for meetings etc. a small stage, changing areas and male/female toilets. We have recently added a ramp for access and a toilet facility for the disabled.
Some vacancies exist in our booking schedule and all enquiries should be made to:
Mrs Jackie Greatorex at [email protected]