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Welcome to the Parish of Hampshire Downs

– combining the churches of St Peter and St Stephen in Winchester, St Gregory in Alresford, and St Thomas More in Stockbridge

We hope that members of the Parish can use the site to get information and updates about the life of the community, and that visitors can learn about us. Please explore the wepages using the tabs above,

We are part of the Catholic Diocese of Portsmouth and unite four worshipping communities – St Gregory the Great, Alresford; St Thomas More, Stockbridge; and St Peter’s and St Stephen’s, both in Winchester. Do come and join us, or please contact us if you need further information or if we can help or support you in any way.

16th Sunday of the Year: 20th July

Agape image (2)


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Margaret Berryman has worked hard and long to produce a brand new Parish Directory.  This contains all the information you could ever need on our Parish, and will be a long-term valuable resource. It’s main home will be on our website here – so, easily and instantly accessible, and also easy to update. To find it, click here or on the Parish Directory tab above.

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The new edition of Crosskeys, summer 14, is on the website now. Click here to see it.

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Neighbourhood Groups

This Project has now been launched in the Parish. As a new activity all of us have an opportunity to influence its development and, as a collaborative project, everyone’s support and co-operation is needed and counts.

Following the launch some very helpful and thoughtful responses have been received. A heartfelt thank you for these! As the first pilot networks are prepared for September please continue to send in your comments, thoughts and ideas. It is important that as the Project develops it continues to reflect your thinking and needs.

You can contact Sandra via the website or the Parish Office. Please keep this Project in your prayers.


15th Sunday of the Year: 13th July


Parable of sower

He said, ‘Imagine a sower going out to sow. As he sowed, some seeds fell on the edge of the path, and the birds came and ate them up. Others fell on patches of rock where they found little soil and sprang up straight away, because there was no depth of earth; but as soon as the sun came up they were scorched and, not having any roots, they withered away. Others fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked them. Others fell on rich soil and produced their crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty. Listen, anyone who has ears!’  Matthew Chapter 13

Picture from a mediaeval MS held at the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore

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Following 7.00pm Mass this Thursday (17th July) there will be a Holy Hour for Life until 8.30pm in respect of the proposed Assisted Dying Bill.

You can read Bishop Philip’s message on the Bill at the Diocesan website, along with links to other resources.

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The new edition of Crosskeys, summer 14, is on the website now. Click here to see it.

14th Sunday of the Year – 6th July



Jesus blesses children


Jesus exclaimed, ‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to mere children.’

Jesus blesses the children – from a 13th century Turkish manuscript in the Walters Art Museum Baltimore

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Monday 7th July – Winchester Catholic History Group

The Roy Wake Memorial Lecture given by Professor Gerard Kilroy,

Edmund Campion’s ‘Rationes Decem’: the Winchester .

7.30pm in the Pastoral Centre.

Members are welcome for drinks and canapés from 6.30pm. Visitors also welcome.

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Professor Ian McHardy, parishioner and  Head of Astronomy at the University of Southampton, recently gave an Adult Faith Formation talk at the Pastoral Centre, on  ‘That about wraps it up for God’ or ‘Life, the Universe and Everything’.  He has shared his talk with us: you can find it here.

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Celebrating Saints in Hampshire Downs Parish

Deacon Gerard writes: There has long been a desire to acknowledge key saints within our respective Parish Churches. At the most recent meeting of Hampshire Downs Liturgy Group a proposal was presented and now Canon Paul has agreed that we should mark a number of these during the year. It is proposed that in each of our Churches a special area will be set aside where people will be encouraged to pray and to learn more from the temporary profile / display that is available about the particular saint(s). We started this last Sunday with St Peter and St Paul. Currently, we have identified a number of Saints which reflect our communities and parishioners across the whole parish; undoubtedly there may be others, if so, you are welcome to share these ideas with Hampshire Downs Liturgy Group who will happily consider them.

 This Week’s Saint:

Saint Thomas the Apostle   – Feast Day July 3

St Thomas Tomb

Tomb of St Thomas the Apostle in Mylapore, India

St. Thomas was a Jew, called to be one of the twelve Apostles. He was a dedicated but impetuous follower of Christ. When Jesus said He was returning to Judea to visit His sick friend Lazarus, Thomas immediately exhorted the other Apostles to accompany Him on the trip which involved certain danger and possible death because of the mounting hostility of the authorities. At the Last Supper, when Christ told His Apostles that He was going to prepare a place for them to which they also might come because they knew both the place and the way, Thomas pleaded that they did not understand and received the beautiful assurance that Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. But St. Thomas is best known for his role in verifying the Resurrection of his Master. Thomas’ unwillingness to believe that the other Apostles had seen their risen Lord on the first Easter Sunday merited for him the title of “doubting Thomas.” …

To continue reading the story of St Thomas, and to find out about the crosses, click here.

St Thomas cross

Cross of St Thomas

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Solemnity of SS Peter and Paul – 29th June


St Peter

‘You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church. And the gates of the underworld can never hold out against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: whatever you bind on earth shall be considered bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth shall be considered loosed in heaven.’  Matthew Chapter 19

the photos of the statues and carvings of our patronal saint in St Peter’s church are  by Joe Low

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YOUTH GROUP’s current sessions finished on Sunday –

look out for more in the autumn – let us know if you want to add your name to the contact list


Youth Group Feb 14 Respect


Youth gp feb 14 boys

To see more and bigger pictures, and more about youth in the parish, see this page.

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Saturday 5th July – First Holy Communion Event

Presentation of Certificates and Family Picnic

from 11.00am to 2.00pm at St Peter’s School.

The First Holy Communion children and their families

are invited to pack a picnic and attend the presentation of the

certificates at 11.00am in St. Stephen’s, then relax and enjoy their

picnic in the school grounds. Dress code – casual.

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Minutes of the recent PPC meeting (17th June) can be found on the PPC page here.

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To read about Bishops Philip’s new  policy document on the Pastoral Areas, go to the Diocesan website here. The full report  -  Developing the Pastoral Areas in the Light of the New Evangelisation – and a letter from the Bishop can be found there.


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Canon Gerard Hetherington

celebrated his Golden Jubilee of Ordination recently, and marked the occasion with Mass and a party at St Peter’s. More pictures in the post below, and  on the Parish Events page, courtesy of John Thornhill.

Canon H service 2

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St Peter as Pope 3


Solemnity of Corpus Christi – 22nd June

bread of life 2

I am the living bread which has come down from heaven, says the Lord. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever.

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Year 7′s and Up

Our final session this coming Sunday, 29th June - completing our theme of ‘Respect’


Youth Group Feb 14 Respect

St Peter’s Youth Group this Sunday June 29th from 7pm-9pm at the Parish Centre Jewry Street.
Music, Pizza, Art, Donuts, Fun, Discussion, Games …. and much more.

A really friendly group with a warm welcome for all. Look forward to seeing you there. Bring a friend!


Youth gp feb 14 boys

To see more and bigger pictures, and more about youth in the parish, see this page.

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Two Vacancies for Foundation Governor, St Peter’s Primary School Winchester - scroll down to the post below for full details of the role, and how to apply.

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Canon Gerard Hetherington

celebrated his Golden Jubilee of Ordination recently, and marked the occasion with Mass and a party at St Peter’s. More pictures on the Parish Events page, courtesy of John Thornhill.

Canon Hetherington

Trinity Sunday – 15th June


Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;

the God who is, who was, and who is to come.


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youth group

BBQ – For year 6s, 7s, and up - This Sunday 22nd June 2-4pm

The youth group are having a BBQ on June 22nd at St. Peter’s School from 2pm – 4 pm.

This session will be open to any year 6′s interested in maybe joining the youth group  in the autumn.

It should be a really fun session with lots of games and activities planned and some yummy food too of course.


art session

A really friendly group with a warm welcome for all. Look forward to seeing you. Bring a friend.

Contact us with any questions or to check on weather-related changes….

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Two Vacancies for Foundation Governor, St Peter’s Primary School Winchester

Term of office four years. Foundation governors are personally appointed by Bishop Philip. Governors work together as a team in close co-operation with the head teacher and staff. In addition to all the legal responsibilities (including setting the strategic direction, budget approval and performance management), foundation governors have to ensure the religious character of the school is preserved and that religious education is in accordance with the Bishop’s policy for the diocese.

Commitment of time will be about 6 sessions each term including some evening meetings. Training and support is available. The school would also benefit from people with experience of working with or representing migrant communities.


To see the job advert click here.

To read a description of the ministry of Foundation Governor, click here.

To find the application form, click here.  You can download it and print it out.

Application forms are also available from the school office.

See also the diocesan and school websites.

Closing date Friday 27th June

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The Covenant with the Poor makes its new Pentecost appeal at all the Masses this weekend – the chosen charity is Headstart, doing wonderful work locally with families in crisis. You can find out more about the appeal, and about Headstart, in the regular CWP newsletter The Promise - click here to read this new issue.

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Also this week:

Tuesday 17th June: PPC meeting at 7pm in the Pastoral Centre.

Wednesday 18th June: Adult Formation talk, 7.30, Pastoral Centre - Professor Ian McHardy, Head of Astronomy at the University of Southampton will speak about:

‘That about wraps it up for God, or, Life, the Universe and Everything.’

Thursday 19th June: Meeting of the Catholic Women’s League (CWL) in the Pastoral Centre at 4.30 for 5 – guest speaker from the Grail Community. All welcome.

More details of these and all other events in the newsletter – click here.

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