Faith Matters Lent 2014

What is the Church for?
50 years after Vatican II

in the light of Pope Francis' Evangelii Gaudium


The following sessions are held in Central London and are widely accessible. Video and audio recordings are available online and broadcasted by Premier Christian Radio. For full list of available audio/video talks click HERE 


LOCATION: Vaughan House, 46 Francis Street, SW1P 1QN (behind the Cathedral).

TIME: 7.00-8.30pm.

These are public lectures and all are welcome. There will be an opportunity to discuss the talks with tea and coffee provided. Registration is required. Please register at or 020 7931 6078 or at or follow the links on this page.Suggested donation £3.

Faith Matters is an initiative of the Agency for Evangelisation in conjunction with the Mount St Jesuit Centre.


13th March "The Church is missionary: principles and practices since the Second Vatican Council" by Fr Philip Knights, Marychurch, Hatfield

The Second Vatican Council declared that the ‘Church is missionary by her very nature’ (Ad Gentes 2). This presentation explores what that means in terms of the theology of missio Dei and the consequent being and purpose of the Church and its impact in how the Church lives out her missionary vocation. We shall explore some of the rich elements which comprise the evangelising mission of the Church. Not least we shall explore something of what is meant by the ‘New Evangelisation’ and how this may be expressed in the parish context.


Fr Philip Knights is a priest of the Diocese of Westminster. He is Priest administrator of Marychurch, Hatfield and Diocesan Director of Missio. He is also a member of the Mission Theology Advisory Group a joint working group of Churches Together in Britain and Ireland and the Church of England and an Executive Member of the British and Irish Association for Mission Studies. He did teach at the Missionary Institute London and was a member of the Catholic Missionary Society and subsequently the Catholic Agency to Support Evangelisation. His publications include Evangelisation in England and Wales: A report to the Catholic Bishops (2002), Changing Evangelisation: themes and stories from Catholics in local Mission (2007) and contributing to Foundations for Mission: a study of language, theology and praxis from the UK and Ireland perspective (2010). His doctoral studies focussed on mission and indigenisation in Southern Africa.


20th March “The Church is Feminine” by Dr Gemma Simmonds CJ, Heythrop College



Register for 20th March


27th March 'The Church of the Poor'? by Dr Helen Costigane SHCJ, Heythrop College

In Evangelii Gaudium, Pope Francis says: ‘Each individual Christian and every community is called to be an instrument for the liberation and promotion of the poor, and for enabling them to be fully a part of society’ (para 187). A review of the work of the Church, from an historical perspective and in the present day, reveals that there has been, and still is, a significant degree of activity on behalf of those identified as ‘poor’. In the light of the Pope’s exhortation, what else do we need to reflect and act on to respond to his words?

Helen Costigane is a member of the Society of the Holy Child Jesus and teaches canon law and Christian ethics at Heythrop College, University of London.







 Register for 27th March

3rd April ‘The Church in the midst of a secular culture’ by Bishop John Sherrington, Westminster


Bishop John Sherrington was ordained as an Auxiliary Bishop of Westminster and Titular Bishop of Hilta on 14th September 2011. He has responsibility for the pastoral care of Hertfordshire and is Chairman of the Westminster Diocese Education Service. As a member of the Bishops’ Conference, he is a member of the Department of Catholic Education and Formation and Co-Chair of the British Methodist-Catholic Committee.

Bishop Sherrington was ordained a priest for the Diocese of Nottingham in 1987. He lectured at All Hallows College, Dublin (1990-1998) and St John’s Seminary, Wonersh (1998-2004) in moral theology. He also served as a Parish Priest in Derby and Nottingham. He is a keen photographer and enjoys hill-walking. He is developing his culinary skills.

Register for 3rd April

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