Induction of Fr Gerry Walsh as Parish Priest of  Saint Augustine’s of Canterbury Matson and English Martyrs Tuffley Feast of St John Fisher, Bishop and St Thomas More, Martyrs 22nd June 2016

Fr Gerry was appointed Parish Priest of St Augustine of Canterbury, Matson and English Martyrs, Tuffley by Bishop Declan in his letter of appointment dated 1st January 2016. He began his ministry 3 days later on 4th January whilst still living at St Peter’s where he had been Assistant Priest for the last couple of years.

Teams from both Parishes began work almost immediately to redecorate the Presbytery at St Augustine’s to make it a home. Fr Gerry was able to move in on Monday 14th March.

Just over 3 months later after careful preparation with representatives from both parishes and some of Fr Gerry’s family and friends his Induction Mass was celebrated St Augustine’s of Canterbury Church which had been adorned with beautifully arranged flowers. Gathered in the full church were parishioners, former parishioners from where Fr Gerry has also be based St Peter’s Gloucester, St Joseph’s Portishead and Holy Rood Swindon as well as some of Fr Gerry’s family and friends. The date chosen also marked the 20th Anniversary of Fr Gerry’s ordination to the Priesthood at St John the Baptist Trowbridge by Bishop Mervyn Alexander.

A large poster size picture of the reredos from English Martyrs Church with the two principal English martyrs John Fisher and Thomas More being on either side with their coats of arms was placed under the altar, the large processional cross from English Martyrs was also used as was a ciborium and a chalice.

The music led by a friend of Fr Gerry Tony Wadley was coordinated by Moira Pratt and drew musicians form both parishes. Throughout this was spiritually uplifting and inspiring.

The readings were read clearly by Carol Cooper from St Augustine’s Fr Gerry’s mum Fleur and the Prayers of the Faithful were read by Flit Rodgers from English Martyrs.     

Mgr Liam Slattery VG gave an inspiring homily managing to reflect on the readings despite the challenge of the first reading for the feast being about whether or not to pretend to eat pigs flesh and the resulting consequences.


Click here to read the homily from Mgr Liam Slattery


The Induction was carried out by the Dean of Gloucester, Fr Barnabas Page VF who using the 2009 rite of induction took Fr Gerry through the sacraments and other responsibilities he has as Parish Priest. His response to each station of induction was ‘I will with the Help of God.’ At each station the people of the parishes were also addressed they responded ‘We will with the Help of God’. For further details click here for the order of service/click on icon to left.

After completing the rite of Induction Fr Gerry took over from the Dean as principal celebrate and immediately pledged to work with Ecumenical colleagues and representatives from both Parishes who were present for the Mass of Induction.

After Holy Communion Fr Gerry gave a few words at the end which he briefly reflected upon ‘Please, Thank You, Sorry, Unworthy Servant, Together, God Bless.’ For his comments click here/click on icon to the left.    

After the Mass refreshments prepared by teams from both parishes and a fruit cake made especially for the occasion by Kathy Harkin were thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Throughout the Mass of Induction and at the reception Tony Sharpe was taking photos which can be viewed and ordered here.

The next weekend Fr Gerry expressed his sincere thanks during the Sunday homily to all who had given so generously of their time for a spirit filled beautiful induction celebration.


Click here to read a copy of what Fr Gerry said during the Induction Mass


Click here to see a copy of the booklet produced for the Induction Mass