The Oxford Oratory is a vibrant centre of Catholic life. Our church is open every day: join us for Mass, pop in for some quiet prayer, or come and discover more at one of our groups. Our historic church of St Aloysius has been a key feature in the lives of the city’s Catholics for 150 years, attracting people of all ages and from every walk of life. We use beauty to raise hearts and minds to God, faithful to the traditions of St Philip Neri and St John Henry Newman.

Sunday 14 August 2022

“A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun.” (Rev. 12:1)

A happy feast of the Assumption!

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Saturday 13 August 2022

Oratory Groups Survey

We are doing some research to help open our Oratory groups for adults and children to as many people as possible. Please help by filling out our short online surveys.

It doesn’t matter whether you have attended any of these groups in the past. We will welcome all feedback. But please only complete the surveys that are relevant to you!

There are different surveys for our groups for adults and children. Each survey is very short and will only take about a minute to complete.

Men’s Oratory Survey

Women’s Oratory Survey

Little Oratory Survey (ages 8–11)

Young Oratory Survey (ages 11–15)

Gaeta Survey (ages 15–17)

Wednesday 10 August 2022

How to pray (6)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

6. Pray with your soul and your body

If you were asked to picture someone praying, you’d probably imagine a person kneeling down with hands joined and eyes closed. There’s no rule that says we have to pray kneeling down, but having particular prayer postures (whatever they may be) as part of our prayer routine will help us to focus. Human beings are bodies and souls, so prayer is going to involve our bodies too. And sometimes when we can’t find the words to pray, we might find that we can express our prayer better with our bodies than with our minds. That said, prayer is above all about raising our hearts and minds to God. That means sharing with him honestly all our thoughts, feelings, memories and desires.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Wednesday 3 August 2022

How to pray (5)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

5. Keep things the same

Forming good prayer habits isn’t just about praying at the same time every day, but it’s also about forming a routine. Find a way of praying that works for you and stick to it. A routine doesn’t make things boring—it means we can skip the boring task of getting started and can give our attention to what really matters. A routine of prayer means we don’t have to think about prayer itself all the time, and can focus on God instead.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Monday 1 August 2022

We recently had the sisters of the Spiritual Family The Work to tea, to say farewell to one sister who is moving to another of their houses and to welcome another sister who is newly arrived in Oxford. The sisters live in Newman’s College in Littlemore, where they welcome pilgrims and visitors.

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Monday 1 August 2022

August Music

Sunday 7 August Solemn Mass 11:00
19th Sunday of the Year
Missa Hic est praecursor Lobo
Credo quod Redemptor Lobo
Sic Deus dilexit mundum Gabrieli
Fugue in D major BWV 532ii Bach

Sunday 14 August Solemn Mass 11:00
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Missa Vidi speciosam Victoria
Assumpta est Maria Palestrina
Ave virgo sanctissma Guerrero
Fuga sopra il Magnificat BWV 733 Bach

Sunday 21 August Solemn Mass 11:00
21st Sunday of the Year
Missa Aeterna Christi munera Palestrina
Transfige dulcissime Biordi
O sacrum convivium d’Evry
Prelude in C BWV 547i Bach

Sunday 28 August Solemn Mass 11:00
22nd Sunday of the Year
Mass for five voices Byrd
Inclina Domine Sheppard
Sacris solemnis Sheppard
Prélude Op. 29 No. 1 Pierné

Wednesday 27 July 2022

How to pray (4)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

4. Prepare a place

It’s easy to get distracted from prayer, so a great help in forming good prayer habits is to have a place for prayer where you can focus on God. You don’t need to build a chapel: it might be a particular part of your bedroom where you always pray. A crucifix or some other holy image can also help to focus on God. Don’t be put off by distractions. If there’s something you can’t help thinking about, turn it into a prayer by bringing it before God. He’ll know what to do with it.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Monday 25 July 2022

Br Alexander is visiting us from the Oratory in Philadelphia. He learnt how to subdeacon this weekend.

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Sunday 24 July 2022

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A post shared by The Oxford Oratory (@oxford.oratory)


Saturday 23 July 2022

Congratulations to Fr Rupert, clothed as a novice in the habit of St Philip today, the feast of Our Lady of Oxford.

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Saturday 23 July 2022

The Relic Chapel in 1908, newly fitted out with the contents of Grissell’s chapel, with our Lady of Oxford above the altar.

Prayer of Consecration to the Mother of Mercy
by Saint John Paul II

O Mother of Mercy, we entrust to your loving heart the entire people and Church of this land. Keep us from all injustice, division, violence and war. Protect us from temptation and slavery of sin and evil. Be with us! Help us to overcome doubt by faith, egoism by service, pride by meekness, and hatred by love. Help us to live the Gospel with the "folly" of the Cross, giving testimony to Christ who died on it, so that we may rise with your Son to the true life with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit. O Mother of Christ, comfort and strengthen all those who suffer: the poor, the lonely, the frightened, the unloved, the oppressed and the forgotten. Bless us! Pray for us with St Joseph, and unite us in love. Grant peace to our divided earth and the light of hope to all. Show us the blessed fruit of your womb, Jesus!

Novena Prayer

O Immaculate Virgin Mary,
Mother of our Lord Jesus and our Mother,
penetrated with the most lively confidence
in your all-powerful and never-failing intercession,
we your loving children implore you to obtain for us
the graces and favours we ask in these devotions,
if they be beneficial to our immortal souls,
and the souls for whom we pray.
(Here make your petitions.)
You know, O Mary,
how often our souls have been the sanctuaries of your Son,
who hates iniquity.
Obtain for us then a deep hatred of sin
and that purity of heart which will attach us to God alone,
so that our every thought, word and deed
may tend to his greater glory.
Obtain for us a spirit of prayer and self-denial,
that we may recover by penance what we have lost by sin,
and at length attain to that blessed abode
where you are the Queen of angels and of men.
Amen.

The devotions end with the Salve Regina.

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Friday 22 July 2022

Devotion to Our Lady of Oxford began in the private chapel of Hartwell de la Garde Grissell on the High Street. When he died, he left his collection to our church. Many of the items in this photo are now in our relic chapel.

The Litany of Our Lady of Mercy

Lord, have mercy. R. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, have mercy. R. Christ, have mercy.
Lord, have mercy. R. Lord, have mercy.
Christ, hear us. R. Christ, graciously hear us.
God the Father of heaven. R. Have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the World, R. Have mercy on us.
God the Holy Spirit, R. Have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, R. Have mercy on us.
Holy Mary, R. Pray for us.
Chosen daughter of the Father,
Glory of the Holy Spirit,
Virgin consecrated to God,
Virgin poor and humble,
Virgin gentle and obedient,
Handmaid of the Lord,
Helper of the Redeemer,
Our Mother,
Full of grace,
Fullness of virtue,
Chosen fruit of redemption,
Perfect disciple of Christ,
Untarnished image of the Church,
Blessed woman,
Woman of the new covenant,
Joy of Israel,
Honour of the human race,
Splendour of the Church,
Model of perfect commitment,
Mother of hope,
Mother of fidelity,
Mother of mercy,
Hope of slaves,
Strength of the suffering,
Help of sinners,
Relief in difficult times,
Model of fortitude,
Advocate of grace,
Champion of God's people,
Queen of love,
Queen of peace,
Queen of heaven,
Queen of the universe,
Our Lady of Oxford,

Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, R. Spare us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, R. Graciously hear us, O Lord.
Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, R. Have mercy on us.

V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God:
R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Let us pray.
Merciful Father and God of all consolation,
you have shown yourself to be wonderful
in the glorious Virgin Mary, Mother of Christ,
and have given her to us as the Mother of Mercy.
May all of us who venerate her with devotion,
always experience her powerful intercession
and enjoy your immense mercy.
Through Christ our Lord. R. Amen.

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Thursday 21 July 2022

This Saturday is the feast of Our Lady of Oxford, Mother of Mercy.

There will be the usual devotions to Our Lady of Oxford after the 10am Mass on Saturday and a procession and prayers to Our Lady after the 11am Solemn Mass on Sunday.

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Wednesday 20 July 2022

How to pray (3)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

3. Spend time praying

God is always there waiting to listen to us, so we need to be ready to speak! Spending time in prayer might mean giving up time that we use for other things. Pick a time for prayer and set it aside. Treat it as the special time you have reserved for God, and remember that choosing a regular time will help to form a habit of praying. It is always good to spend the first and last moments of the day in God’s presence, which is why this book contains prayers for the morning and the evening. If you can afford it, there might be other moments you can spend with God. You might pass a church during your daily routine, or have a break in the middle or at the end of the day that you can give to God. Pick a time and offer it to God.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Sunday 17 July 2022

Today we welcomed the newly-ordained Fr Albert from Blackfriars to celebrate the Solemn Mass.

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Wednesday 13 July 2022

How to pray (2)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

2. Walk before you run

If your prayer time is going to fit into your routine, it has to be short enough to fit into your timetable. It is much better to have a short but regular time of prayer than to spend hours trying to catch up. Many people take on too much when they begin to pray, like someone beginning a new exercise routine with a marathon. But when they can’t keep up their new routine, they give up all together. Start slowly—walk before you run—and once you form a habit of praying regularly, your time of prayer can grow naturally.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Tuesday 12 July 2022

Congratulations to Fr Albert Robertson OP who was ordained priest in Blackfriars this Sunday!

Fr Nicholas preached at his first Mass the next day.

Fr Albert will celebrate the Solemn Mass for us this Sunday.

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Friday 8 July 2022

July Music

Sunday 3 July Solemn Mass 11:00
14th Sunday of the Year
Missa Cara la vita mia de Monte
Populum humilem Lassus
Tu solus qui facis mirabilia Josquin
Fugue sur le nom Alain Duruflé

Sunday 10 July Solemn Mass 11:00
15th Sunday of the Year
Mass in the Dorian Mode Howells
Ad te, Domine, levavi Scarlatti
Ego sum panis vivus Byrd
Paean Howells

Sunday 17 July Solemn Mass 11:00
16th Sunday of the Year
Missa Beati omnes Gombert
Iustitiae Domini Mendelssohn
Ave verum Mozart
Prelude in C minor Mendelssohn

Sunday 24 July Solemn Mass 11:00
17th Sunday of the Year
Missa Primi toni Porta
Gaude Virgo Maria Porta
Salve Regina Obrecht
Offertoire sur les Grands Jeux Couperin

Sunday 31 July Solemn Mass 11:00
18th Sunday of the Year
Missa in illo tempore Monteverdi
Precatus est Moyses Palestrina
Adoramus te Christe Monteverdi
Tiento de falsas 2º tono Bruna

Wednesday 6 July 2022

How to pray (1)

Our weekly reflections are paused for the summer, so in their place there will be a short extract from how to pray in ten easy steps. This guide is taken from The Oratory Prayer Book, a new prayer book of old prayers that we are publishing and will be available in the coming months.

1. Make prayer a habit

We very rarely have to be reminded to eat, drink or sleep. They are part of our daily routines. We do them out of habit. We always make sure there is time to do them each day because we don’t want to go without them. Prayer should be something special because it is time spent with someone important to us, not because it is something rare. If you want your friendship with God to grow, you need to spend time with him. Make a routine and form habits of praying at set times. Put prayer first so that it doesn’t get forgotten. Form a habit, and you won’t have to spend time thinking about praying every time you want to pray.


These reflections are sent out each Wednesday to all those on our mailing list. Click here to sign up to our mailing list, and receive our Sunday E-newsletter and these reflections straight to your inbox.

Tuesday 5 July 2022

Celebrating the feast of our local martyrs.

“The executions took place at Oxford in July 1589. The two priests were each dragged through the streets on a horse-drawn hurdle. The first to die was Fr George Nichols. Having been refused permission to address the crowd, he made his profession of faith. He made it clear that he was being executed merely because he was a priest. Climbing the ladder to the gallows, he made the sign of the cross on each rung and kissed it. Then he was thrown off to his death.

“Fr Richard Yaxley was the next to die. He embraced the body of his dead colleague, then climbed the ladder and started to make his own profession of faith. But, before he could finish, he too was pushed off.

“It was now Thomas Belson’s turn to die. He hugged the bodies of the two priests and prayed that he would share their courage. He climbed the ladder, started his profession of faith and, like Fr Yaxley, was executed before he could finish. He was twenty-six years old.

“Finally, it was the turn of Humphrey Prichard, the servant from the Catherine Wheel. At the top of the ladder, he told the crowd that he died for ‘being a Catholic and faithful Christian of Holy Church’. A Puritan minister mocked him for being ignorant. Prichard replied that ‘what I cannot explain by mouth, I am ready and prepared to explain and testify to you at the cost of my blood.’ Whereupon he was thrown from the ladder.

“The priests were decapitated and quartered, their heads and quarters being parboiled in a cauldron. Their remains were then fixed to the wall of Oxford Castle, where they were mutilated by Puritan extremists. A couple of days later, the remains were fixed to the town gates. The right arm of Fr Nichols is reported to have swivelled round of its own accord. Some said it pointed accusingly at the city.” (From ‘Thames Valley Papists’ by Tony Hadland)

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