Welcome to the website for Our Lady and St Joseph, Kirkwall, Orkney

Fr Peter Kelly and our Bishop, the Rt Rev. Hugh Gilbert OSB.

 Fr Peter Kelly and our Bishop

Italian Chapel


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Church location Click for our location

Interesting Links

Web Site for Parish of Thurso and Wick, Caithness.

http://www.weekdaymasses.org.uk - a site showing a Google map of the UK, with the locations of Catholic churches identified. By clicking on the location icon, you will find out the times of Masses there.

http://www.scalan.co.uk The Scalan Trail - a description of the development of the parishes in the Diocese.

Welcome to our website!

Welcome to the Orkney Islands and to our little Catholic outpost of Our Lady and St Joseph's.

We are the only Roman Catholic parish in the Orkney Islands located off the north coast of Scotland.  We are members of the Diocese of Aberdeen.  and part of St. Joseph's Highland Deanery.

Whether you are young or old, Christian or just curious, you would be very welcome to visit our Church.

The Catholic Community here consists of:
Permanent residents on the mainland including those who reside for only a few months in the year;
Residents on the smaller islands;
Holiday visitors;and casual visitors such as seamen and itinerant contract workers.

"The Sacred Heart of Jesus" Chapel, Saville, Sanday. This Chapel is at Saville, the home of two parishioners, Maurice and Jean Soord. Special permission has been given by the Bishop, for Reservation of the Blessed Sacrament The Chapel is open to all who wish to pray there.
Once a month, the Parish Priest visits from Kirkwall to celebrate Mass. Because he is unable to celebrate Mass frequently there is a Liturgy of the Word and Holy Communion Service each Sunday at 10.00am. For details of other services in the Chapel please contact Maurice or Jean on 01857 600409.

Not to be missed during the summer months is Mass said at the world famous Italian Chapel on Lambs Holm. The first Sunday of the month, traditionally at 3:30 p.m. is the place to be - an unforgettable experience. This is a place of peace and reconciliation now, where visitors can rest a while, ponder and say a prayer.
It remains to this day a marvel of faith and devotion to God, to Our Lady and the Saints.

"Congregation of the Sons of the Most Holy Redeemer" is a recognised Institute of Consecrated or Religious Life within the Catholic Church. As an Institute of Diocesan Right it is subject to the special care of the Diocesan Bishop. The community, consisting of priests and brothers, celebrates the Liturgy in Latin, according to the Extraordinary Form, with full approval of the Holy See. The community are resident on the island of Papa Stronsay.

Parish Life

The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass For Catholics, the Eucharist is the source and summit of the whole Christian life. It is the vital centre of all that the Church is and does, because at its heart is the real presence of the crucified, risen and glorified Lord, continuing and making available his saving work among us.

1) Guidelines for receiving Holy Communion for Catholics
For Catholics the climax of participating in the Mass is receiving Holy Communion, in obedience to Christ's command. Take this...and eat it. This is my Body, which will be given up for you... In order to be properly disposed to receive Holy Communion communicants should not be conscious of grave sin, should have fasted for one  hour (or 15mins if sick) and seek to live in peace and charity with their neighbours. Those conscious of grave sin must first be reconciled to God and the Church through the sacrament of Penance. A frequent reception of this often neglected Sacrament is recommended to all.
2) For other Christians
Other Christians are welcome to attend Mass and other Catholic Services and join in the prayers. It is however a consequence of the sad divisions in Christianity that we cannot share Holy Communion with you. Catholics believe that the Eucharist is an action of the celebrating community expressing its oneness in faith, life and worship with the Catholic Church throughout the world. Reception of Holy Communion by Christians not fully united with us would imply a oneness which does not yet exist, and for which we all of us must pray.
Those who are not able to receive Holy Communion are encouraged to express in their hearts a prayerful desire for unity with Jesus, the Lord, and with one another.

Parishioners are involved in this regular celebration in many ways:

Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharistare trained, and commissioned, to assist the priest at Mass. In exceptional circumstances, for example when the priest is not available, they take Holy Communion to our sick, housebound and hospitalised parishioners.

The Ministry of Reading: readers are organised on a rota basis.

Music Ministry: we love to sing especially with our Organist!

Altar Servers: assist the priest at Sunday Mass and receive on the job training.

Children's liturgy: Children have their own Liturgy of the Word during Sunday Mass led by our Catechists.

Care of the Sanctuary and Church: A parishioner looks after the altar linens; a team looks after the floral decorations and church cleanliness.