The Laying of the Foundation Stone at Our Lady of Lourdes Parish Hall

At Our Lady of Lourdes, Leigh-on-Sea, we have been busily building a Parish Centre:


It's no Parish 'hall', a far more substantial project which will undoubtedly stand for generations to come. As such it demonstrates our Parish community's commitment to Leigh-on-Sea and indeed, to the young people of the future.

On Sunday, we had our Parish AGM, followed by the Blessing and laying of the Foundation Stone for the Parish Centre. It was great, and Father Kevin asked me to take some pictures for the sake of posterity. Of course, this has the added advantage of allowing me the privilege of posting the pictures here. For friends and parishioners, I have numbered the photos, so if there is one or more you would like copies of, please email me with the number(s) and I will endeavour to send you them. If you leave a comment at the bottom of this post I will get in touch with you that way.

This is Fr. Kevin's message from Sunday's Newsletter:

Dear Friends in Christ

Next Sunday - 14th - is the occasion of the Annual Parish Meeting and Garden Party. This year it will include the Blessing and laying of the Foundation Stone of the Parish Centre. I propose that we will have a short meeting, for the presentation of the reports of the various Parish groups, in the Lady Chapel, and then proceed to the Blessing and laying of the Stone. Because of the obvious Health and Safety restrictions it won't be possible to have everyone present go on-site for the actual laying so, we will bless the Stone in church and then a group of us with the Builder and Architect will proceed to the outer wall near the entrance to the new Centre for actual placing of it. We can then all repair to The Presbytery garden for the social gathering; weather permitting!

To have arrived at this day is a tribute to all the tremendous hard work and enthusiasm of very many of you: those who have been so encouraging of this project from its inception, the professional teams, and most of all to those of you who are making this possible by continued generosity each week and in our particular Fundraising endeavours. We now need to think seriously about funding the various 'white goods' that are required before the Centre can open for normal Parish business again. A list of what is still needed will be available next Sunday evening and I would ask you to consider if you are in a position to provide any of these items. I look forward to joining with you all next Sunday for what will be an enjoyable and significant milestone in the life of the Parish Family. Do pray that it will at least be a dry evening!

God bless you!


Fr Kevin Hale



For my family and I, the day began with Mass. I was in the choir loft, which provides a somewhat unique perspective of the proceedings if you have never been up there. Here is Father Kevin preaching:


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John Joe, my youngest son, enraptured by the homily, as one would expect.

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After Mass, we returned to the Church at 5:30pm for Vespers & Benediction.

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After the Parish AGM, a quick change of outfit, and Fr. Kevin was ready for the next part of the liturgy:

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How do I look?

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There was a short procession to the Lady chapel

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The Architect (A Knight of St. John of the Hospital of Jerusalem no less) and the builder attended the blessing of the stone:

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Next, we processed to the new Parish Centre singing:

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Father Kevin then cemented in the foundation stone. He demonstrated considerable aptitude for the task, and may even start moon-lighting as a bricky!

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Next, we headed off to the presbytery garden for a glass of Prosecco and a nibble or two

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This picture was to capture the golden trowel sticking out of the builder's back pocket

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