Liturgy and Prayer

Liturgy and Prayer

Liturgy and Prayer

Music and Singing
At Holy Rood music is a integral part of many of our regular liturgies including 4 of the Sunday Masses (Saturday 6.15pm, and Sundays at 9.30am, 11am and 5.30pm); weddings and funerals, First Holy Communion and Confirmation and liturgies during Advent, Christmas, Lent and Easter. We are served by four groups:
The 9.30 choir sing at the 9.30am Mass on Sundays: a combination of contemporary and traditional music.
Holy Rood Choir, sing at 11.00am Mass: Traditional hymns accompanied by the organ.
Laudate music group sing at 5.30pm Mass on a Sunday evening. A new group now sing fortnightly at the 6.15 Saturday evening vigil mass. Holy Rood Children’s Choir alternate between the 9.30am and 11.00am Masses on the last Sunday of the month. The New Life Choir lead music at the penitential services in Advent and Lent, the first Mass of Christmas (on Christmas Eve),  the Easter Vigil and the Confirmation Masses.

All our choirs welcome new members. Please do look at their individual pages to find out more.

Holy Rood Choir – at 11am Mass

The 11 o’clock Choir is a formal traditional choir catering for those who enjoy a sung Mass in the serious standard mode.  We sing the order of service, 4 hymns and a communion anthem. The Choir is led by Bob Maskell, organist Anthony Hall and deputy organist, Claire Beaton and our rehearsals are usually on Saturday midday in preparation for the next Sunday and sometimes for the subsequent Sunday.  New members are always welcome.

Resources: we have two folders containing our music, black for the Mass and regularly sung anthems and blue for Christmas and Easter Services.  These are maintained, brought out and gathered back in by a small number of people in the choir who team up to copy music for them.

The Choir sings at Weddings – where a fee is charged, and a pro-forma of suggested hymns is given to the potential bride and groom, which they can decide from and add to, on agreement with us (we need to check licences prior to singing anything) different hymns.  They choose what is sung when the register is being signed, sometimes this is a simple anthem from us right through to soloists on their request.  Marion Aspell, who is now based in Wootton Bassett with her husband Terry who is a Deacon, is often requested. Bookings for the organist and choir for weddings are taken by Christine Hall.

We also sing, unobtrusively from the front row, at funerals.

The Choir Treasurers are jointly Anne Johnstone and John Hewlett.  The money we raise does not go to pay the choir members, we attend voluntarily and feel it to be a great privilege.  The proceeds go towards appropriate causes as they arise and annually agreed charities. Choir money is also used for Easter eggs on Easter Sunday which are very welcome after all the practices leading up to Easter and the busy Easter week.  At Christmas, gifts are bought in the name of the choir for people in more need than we are, typically the Oxfam village gift projects.  The funds are also used to purchase new music, plus parish training and singing events for those who wish to attend.

Laudate - the Sunday 5.30 Music Group

This group formed in Autumn 2012 out of the desire of the Holy Rood Young Adults group in the parish to reach out to younger parishioners via more modern Christian worship songs. We meet to practice and to learn new songs before 5.30 mass every week. New musicians and singers are always welcome. Please contact us via the parish office or come and say hello after mass. 



New Life Choir

The New Life Choir is a ‘part- time’ choir. We gather a few times a year to support the some of the Advent, Christmas, Lenten & Easter services; and the Confirmation Masses. We sing a variety of material including traditional hymns and modern worship songs. We have some regular core members but are always keen to welcome new members. Do come and give us a try – no audition needed, just enthusiasm for singing God’s praises!

Marguerite, Deana and Ruth

Please help us out with the music for the Easter Vigil 2021

Thanks for visiting the New Life Choir page and for helping us to record some music, via the Virtual Choir Recorder app, for the Easter Vigil this year. The parts we would like you to sing are the Holy Holy, Memorial Acclamation, the lamb of God and the great Amen. (The app was free when we started this project but there is now a small fee of 99p per month linked to using this app. We hope that this will not put you off. If you intend to use the app just once for Easter – simply unsubscribe once you have made the recordings). 

Here’s what to do:

  1. Download the Virtual Choir Recorder App. Link here
  2. Open the app and register as a choir member (not director) following the instructions. You can use New Life Choir as the name and ps100 as the choir code.
  3. To add your voice to the tracks:
  • Open the app. Put a set of earphones into your ear and plug into the phone (or laptop) and use throughout recording.
  • Go to New Recordings and then hit the arrow ‘choose track to sing’ (a few titles will appear)
  • You can press ‘play’ to listen to the track as often as you want before starting to record
  • When you are ready click ‘start recording’
  • You will be asked to ‘enter which part to sing’ – you can just type in ‘melody’ or ‘harmony’. This is not too important.
  • You can find/ download the words to the hymns and mass parts here.
  • Sing or play your part and hit stop when you’re done.
  • You can listen to your part and hit Save Recording. The app will automatically save your name and the song for you.
  • Go to View My Recordings and press Upload
That’s it. Please record as many of the songs as you would like, singing, or on an instrument. (Music can be supplied via the parish office). If you would like some help with the process – please leave your name and contact details with the parish office and one of us will get in touch.
We will try and add a few more tracks soon. Thank you very much for supporting the music this Easter. Maybe you will feel able to come and join one of the parish choirs once we are all up and running again?
Sunday 9.30am Choir and Music Group
We support the singing at 9.30 mass on Sundays throughout the year, taking a break during the summer holidays. The group was started in 1999 to develop one of the Sunday masses towards being more family friendly. It comprises adults and young people – with the emphasis being on facilitating young people in sharing and developing their musical and singing talents. The music is a mix of old and new – but chosen to fit with readings of the day and liturgical seasons. The group is led by Frances Corrigan.


Rehearsals: 2 weekly on Saturday afternoons

New members are always welcome, and we are particularly looking out for those who would like to try their hand at leading.


Since the beginning of the Church, communities have chosen people for the task of reading the Scriptures within the liturgy. Yet being a Reader is more than simply fulfilling a task. At its best, Reading is a calling, vocation and a spiritual discipline. It is a commitment to preparing oneself so that one’s reading becomes a vehicle for God’s word. Today we take the proclamation of the word of God for granted, but perhaps do not recognise that Reading is an act of proclamation and the key instrument of that proclamation is the Minister of Reader.

During Mass we have four distinct encounters with Christ – in the people gathered together, in the presiding priest or bishop, in the word of God, which is ‘alive and active’ (Heb 4:12) and in the Body and Blood of Christ. The proclamation of the word is thus integral to the Mass and at its very heart.

In proclaiming the word of God from Sacred Scripture, Readers exercise their responsibility in mediating the presence of Christ. God speaks to the assembly through them, and the impact of God’s message will depend significantly on their conviction, their preparation, and their delivery. The Reader has responsibility for not simply reading the word, but assisting the assembly to hear the word, which requires the Reader to be attentive to the assembly, allowing times of pause and silence as the assembly prepares to listen and takes the word of God to heart.

If you would like to be considered for this ministry please contact the parish priest. Our readers are invited to attend some form of training/ retreat on an annual basis.

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion

The ordinary minister of Holy Communion is the bishop, priest or deacon. If a large number of lay faithful is present at Mass, the ordinary minister(s) may frequently require the assistance of lay faithful, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, ministering Christ’s Body and Blood to their sisters and brothers. Such ministers will normally be approved by the bishop, having been carefully chosen and formed, and will be formally commissioned to exercise this ministry within their community.

Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion are lay people – members of the community, ministers who co-operate in the sacred ministry of the priest when they exercise their ministry at Mass. They should therefore prepare for this prayerfully, with the utmost respect and reverence for what they are about to undertake. They should be seated in the assembly and should not be part of the opening or closing processions. It is a powerful sign of calling to see them coming from the midst of the community and returning to that community having served.

If you would like to be considered for this ministry please contact the parish priest.




Altar Servers

For information regarding Altar Serving at Mass please contact the parish office – 01793 522062

Children's Liturgy

We run a Children’s Liturgy of the Word at the 9.30am Mass most Sundays throughout school term time, currently just for those in school years Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. The sessions are held in the adjoining Holy Rood Primary School main hall.
Each group is hosted by at least 2 people (DBS-checked) and the sessions run for about 20 minutes. The priest invites the children up to the front of the church to meet with the group leaders just after the opening prayer, and the children are brought back to join their families during the preparation of the gifts /collection.
Often, the group puts together a board covering the topic of the Sunday (normally covering the Gospel, but it could be one of the readings if they were easier to grasp for the children) and the board is brought up by the children as part of the Offertory Procession.
The leaders put together the sessions themselves, using either online materials from places such as CAFOD or Sermons For Kids, or using books provided, which are kept in the Parish Room. In terms of numbers of volunteers, we try to have 4 groups of 4 people so that volunteers are on a 1 week in 6 rota. We provide basic materials tool (e.g. crayons, paper) and also we can use the photocopier in the presbytery.
New helpers & catechists are always needed, especially at present since we would like to get re-start our ministry to the children in school years 3-6. We will offer you a full induction and training. Do speak to Peter if you are interested. He can be contacted via the parish office.

Divine Office

Morning Prayer in the Church:  Monday, Tuesday & Saturday after 8am Mass
Evening Prayer in the Church:  Wednesday at 5.20pm

Eucharistic Adoration

Holy Rood parish is delighted to be able to offer a number of opportunites for adoration of the blessed sacrament. We still have slots to fill for our perpetual adoration. Please contact the coordinator via the parish office if you are interested in offering an hour of your time each week to support this ministry. 

Perpetual Adoration:  There is exposition of the Blessed Sacrament Monday to Friday from 7am – 10pm.  Please check the newsletter before coming to adore as the Blessed Sacrament is reposed during Mass and funerals.

Holy Hour for Vocations: 2-3pm, last Thursday of the month.  There is exposition on the main altar with readings, hymns, prayers, periods of silence, ending with a simple benediction if there is a priest or deacon available.  Dates may change so please keep an eye on the newsletter for updates.

First Friday of the Month: Normally a time of exposition of the Blessed Sacrament during the Goan Charismatic Prayer group, after the 5.45pm Mass.

Prayer Groups

Morning Prayer in the Church:
Monday, Tuesday & Saturday after 8am Mass
Evening Prayer in the Church:
Wednesday at 5.20pm

INTERCESSORY PRAYER GROUP: A time of prayer & gospel reflection, Mondays at 9.15am in theParish Room

MOTHERS’ PRAYERS: Thursday mornings at St Mary’s Convent, 34, Groundwell Road after 9am Mass.

MULTI NATIONAL Holy Ghost Catholic Charismatic Renewal Group, Thursdays 5pm-7pm in the Parish Room

LECTIO DIVINA: Group reflection on next Sunday’s gospel: Friday 8.45-9.30am in the Parish Room

GOAN KONKANI PRAYER GROUP after 5:45pm Mass on Fridays until 7:30pm. In the Church