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HomeAbout Us    March 23, 2017

 

About Us
 
Located in North Parade at its junction with Barrowby Road, the original church was opened in 1833. Since then its shape, orientation and decoration have been altered on several occasions, most recently in 2003.
The glass-fronted entrance lobby provides a welcoming space to regular worshippers and visitors alike. In the lobby various leaflets and books are available for purchase.
For further information, you can email stmarys_grantham@btconnect.com or leave a message for the Parish Priest, Father Chris O'Connor, on 01476 563935.

 

 

 

History
 
The foundation stone of Grantham's Catholic Church was laid in February 1831 and the completed Church was opened by Bishop Walsh in May 1833. The cost of about £4,000 was met by Father Thomas Peter Tempest who was from a recusant Yorkshire family.
 
The Architect was Edward Willson, a Lincoln man whose brother, Fr. Robert William Willson, (later first Bishop of Hobart, Tasmania) was responsible for the building of Nottingham Cathedral. Our Church was originally built in a classical style with a small cupola and cross with a statue of the Virgin Mary over the entrance.
 
Great alterations and additions took place in 1884 when a new chancel was added. Even greater changes took place during the mid-1960s, when the Church was remodelled and re-orientated inside.
 
At the time when the church was built, it was not actually in Grantham but in the Parish of Little Gonerby on the side of the Mowbeck stream.
 
The Parish Hall was built originally as the School and was used as such until 1928 when the new primary School was built in Sandon Road. The Hall was extensively altered and extended in 1995.
 
A new bell was cast and installed along with a new tower clock in summer 1999. The stonework was cleaned and repaired at that time. A new statue of Our Lady was commissioned as part of the millennium project and was installed in October 2000. The entrance to the Church and the internal decor were re-styled, with new stained glass windows being added behind the Sanctuary, in 2003/2004.
 
Beneath the floor of the Church there is a Crypt. It is located below the Choir Gallery. A plaque on the wall next to the statue of St. Anthony gives the names of those whose last remains rest in this place.

 

 
 

 

Memorial Window
There is now only one traditional stained-glass window in the church of St Mary the Immaculate, Grantham. It is in the south wall of the church, opposite the sanctuary, and depicts the Annunciation. However, all is not as it may seem.
 
Careful comparison of this window with those in the east wall of the church, which are unchanged since the church was built in 1832, gives the first clue. The Annunciation window is significantly shorter. This is a consequence of the works involved in the re-ordering of the church in 1965 following the Second Vatican Council.
 
The design of those works required the provision of a new porch and entrance/"crying" corridor and the breaching of the south wall in order to give new access to the re-designed church. The necessary headroom could only be achieved by raising the sills of the existing windows.
 
Sadly, in the case of the stained-glass window, this had the devastating effect not only of destroying about twenty percent of the design but also of obliterating the purpose and dedication of the window.

 

 
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God our Father, Shepherd and Guide, look with love on Francis, your servant, the pastor of your church. May his word and example continue to inspire and guide the Church and may he and all those entrusted to his care come to the joy of everlasting life. Amen.

 


 

 

 
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