Parishioners campaign to reopen their church

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PARISHIONERS fighting to re-open a Lowton church are staging a protest service this weekend.

They are to hold a special Rosary outside the locked and barred doors of St Catherine of Siena in Lowton at 3pm on Sunday.

The event has been organised to coincide with the commemorations of the anniversary of the death in Rome in 1380 of the saint after whom their parish is named.

However the congregation’s determined campaign committee is hoping that as many former church goers as possible will attend to show Dicocesan chiefs : “We have not gone away.”

St Catherine of Siena Church was closed a year ago after the church authorities in Liverpool decided it faced such significant structural issues – including the need for a full electrical rewiring – that it was uneconomic to keep it going, despite the healthy looking 250-plus attendence over the week at Mass.

Many parishioners, who were urged to join the congregation at their sister All Saints RC Church in Golborne instead, claim the maintenance argument is a “red herring” to cover up for the church’s operational problems due to the national shortage of parish priests.

Chairman of the St Catherine of Siena parish committee, Jim Wright, said that they were keen to encourage as many of the congregation as possible to support the Anniversary Rosary,

However, with the church authorities not responding to their e-mails, they were not expecting any clergy to be in attendance .

He said: “Our Church of St Catherine was closed down at the end of last July and since then to be honest we have had very very little information about what may happen in the future and what will happen going forward.

“Our message is ‘come and join in and bring a friend to show your support’ because the higher attendence the better. We want to show we have’t gone away and are determined to see the church re-opened.”