Church Reopening – How Do I Book To Attend Mass?

  • There will be Mass at 10am on Sundays.
  • There is a booking system which you will need to use in order to attend Sunday Mass starting the week of 5 July 2021.
  • You can do this on our website by going to the ‘events’ tab and selecting the mass you wish to book for. The booking system will let you know how many spaces are available for each mass.
  • It is important that you enter how many people will be coming for mass in your booking under the ‘participants’ section and that you enter all of your details in the booking system. You will then receive an email confirming your booking for mass.
  • If you any questions please call 020 8478 1895 or email [email protected] Our office hours are Monday 10.30-5.30 Thursday 10.30 – 3.30 and Friday 10.30-1.00.
  • Please ensure you read the below guidance before you come to the church for mass.

Guidelines for return to Mass

Applying the guidelines from the Church to our own circumstances, we have put everything we can in place in order to minimise the risk of the spread of COVID-19.
Please remember that if you or a member of your household are displaying Covid-19 symptoms, you must not come to Mass.
In respect of all of the below, we ask for your respectful cooperation during Mass with Fr. Sean/Fr. Liam, the ushers and stewards.

  • The maximum number we can have in the church for mass is 80.
  • Please arrive on time.
  • Please work with and respect the stewards and ushers and follow their guidance.
  • Mass duration is approximately 35-40 minutes.
  • You will not be able to light candles and move around before and after Mass.
  • In line with COVID-19 guidelines you must wear a face covering unless you are exempt.
  • In line with COVID-19 guidelines the toilet will be closed. Please ensure you go to the toilet before you attend Mass.
  • In line with COVID-19 guidelines the kneelers are not to be used during Mass.
  • Please note that the Mass inside the church is being filmed and will be shown live on YouTube for our online streaming of Mass. This means that film/photos of you will be transmitted on our YouTube online streaming
    service of Mass. If you are attending Mass in the church and have any concerns about being filmed or wish to be exempt from the filming then please speak to Father Sean/Father Liam or one of the ushers.

On Arrival

  • When you arrive at the church your temperature will be checked. If your temperature is over 37.5°C then you will be asked to sit down for a while and then your temperature will be checked again. If your temperature is still above 37.5°C we will not be able to allow you to enter the church for mass. This is in line with COVID-19 and government guidelines for large venues.
  • You will be required to confirm your booking to us for Track & Trace purposes (your contact information will be held confidentially for 21 days for public health records). This is in line with the government guidelines.
  • We would also like to encourage you to download the government’s NHS Track & Trace app as there will be a QR code to scan when you arrive in the church as part of the Track & Trace system in line with the government guidelines.
  • You will be required to sanitise your hands as you enter the Church.

Seating for Mass

  • As in a restaurant, when you come to Mass, you will have to wait to be seated by one of the ushers in order to ensure social and physical distancing is maintained. You must sit where you are asked to sit and you will not be able to sit wherever you please. It is important that you come to Mass in very good time so that you can be seated and that Mass can start promptly.
  • Once St. Stephen’s Catholic Church reaches its capacity of 80 you will not be able to attend Mass on this occasion and we will kindly ask that you book for another Mass. If you are late and there is capacity for you to be seated then the usher will guide you to be seated safely.

During Mass

  • There will be no singing for the duration of Mass.
  • There will be no use of the hymn books/mass books.
  • There will be no sign of peace or passing of the collection baskets.
  • Kneelers are not to be used.


  • For communion, to ensure safe distancing please wait to be guided by the stewards to come to communion and respect the markings on the floor.
  • Communion will be received in the hand (outstretched) only ensuring a safe distance. The priest will not say “Body of Christ” and we receive in silence.

Leaving The Church

  • You will be asked to leave at the end of Mass. Please wait to be shown to the exit by the stewards and maintain safe distancing as you leave.
  • Please hand sanitise as you leave the Church.
  • There will be collection baskets at the back of the church when you exit if you would like to leave your donation or you can also make an online donation through the parish or diocese website.
  • If you would like to use our church shop then please let one of the stewards know at the end of mass and they will make sure that you are able to access it. Please follow the guidance of the stewards when using the shop for everyone’s safety.

All the measures that we are putting in place will be continually assessed and reviewed. These circumstances are unprecedented, and we appreciate your understanding and patience as we work hard to ensure the safety of all people who will gather again in the presence of Jesus, truly present to us in His Living Word and Holy Communion.