Faced with falling offertory income during the Covid-19 lockdown, sadly, many dioceses are looking to close churches. However, the diocese of East Anglia has bucked that trend by opening a beautiful new chapel, at Withermarsh Green.
This previously little used private chapel will now be open for public worship and Masses.
The new Mass community has been established at Withermarsh Green with the appointment of Fr Henry Whisenant as chaplain for the celebration of the Mass and sacraments in the Extraordinary Form (Latin Mass). It sits in the privately owned Chapel of Our Lady Immaculate and St Edmund, near Ipswich.
It is a bold decision: from January to June, the diocese has estimated that its offertory income fell by 30 per cent, forcing many parishes to suspend building work or reduce expenditure in order to save money.
Overall the Diocese is also planning to reduce its central budgets for 2021 by 10 per cent, it reported.
Picture: The Chapel of Our Lady Immaculate and St Edmund, near Ipswich.