Part of the Rugby Deanery and Roman Catholic Arch-Diocese of Birmingham.



Requiem of Michael Furlong 11.45am


St. Benedict’s Church is situated in the historic market town of Atherstone, North Warwickshire, serving the town and surrounding villages. In the past the area has been predominately agricultural, with coal mining and hatting playing an important part in the lives of its population. With the demise of the coalfields and the manufacture of hats, many new industries have been established in the area which has excellent road, rail and air transport links. People also commute to the nearby cities of Birmingham, Coventry and Leicester.


Our vision is for a community of equals which aims to love God and to love our neighbour:
with all our HEART, in the welcome and care we show to all,
with all our SOUL, in the way we worship,
with all our STRENGTH, in the way we use our gifts for the good of others,
with all our MIND, in the way we bring the message of the Gospel to all those around us.

“That in all things God may be glorified”

St. Benedict

church interior

frosty colour


The Trustees would like to thank all those who supported Frosty’s Festive Fayre on December 2nd. Together with very generous donations and the sale of Christmas cards the total realised £2,373. 35. All of this money will go towards the building of the two new classrooms in the village school. The school is very successful and at present there are 1,113 pupils on role. Without the help of people like yourselves these children would not be receiving an education. Thank you.

lent 2


Lent Soup Lunches will take place in the Church Hall every Friday at 12.30pm. If you have problems in getting to the Church, please let us know and someone will come and collect you. Please phone 01827 704858.

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John Lewis
Only M&S



You may remember that I started writing these letters to the Benedictines, while I was away from the parish and living in Harborne during a period of recovery after some major surgeries on my cancer. It was a way of staying in touch with you and assuring you of my prayers,, and perhaps of reminding you, or asking you, to pray for me.

This year since Easter, I have been completely out of circulation, and it is a measure of how sick I have been that I have felt unable even to write the letter each week. As I feel a little better this week, I am taking the opportunity of writing and letting you all know what has been happening!

By the time Easter came around, and Holy Week, I was pretty sick. I’ve known for a long time that I had a tumour again and that it was growing fairly rapidly. By Easter it was causing some major symptoms. For several months, I have been unable to eat properly. Food was making me ill, so I became less and less inclined to eat anything and so have lost a lot of weight. The source of the problem was the tumour pressing on my stomach create all sorts of problems with the normal functioning of my stomach and digestive system. Also I was steadily losing energy and strength, again caused by the tumour, but compounded by my lack of adequate eating. I went right down to rock bottom, such that my muscles were beginning to waste. I was seriously ill.

On top of this, my surgeon was saying that further surgery is much less of an option for dealing with the tumour. It would be too risky!

At that very same time, a real moment of grace, a door opened for me on a drug trial in London at the Royal Marsden Hospital. A drug that could specifically treat my condition! I was accepted for the trial, and have been taking the tablets for the last 2 months. During this time, I have been extremely poorly – sometimes barely managing to get to London – one time they sent me home because I was too run down to take part in the tests. I developed a chest infection and then had a bout of Pneumonia! I have been in a pretty deep valley, and with my eating a little bit more under control, I am very slowly climbing up the side of the valley to a better place. But is has been fraught with difficulty and utter weakness.

And now for the good news! On Wednesday during this last week I went to London for a whole-body CaT Scan. On Thursday, I was back in London again to hear the results!

It is a complete miracle – but after two months of taking the drug (including one week in which they stopped me taking it, on account of my extreme illness), the scan showed that my tumour has reduced by almost 40%. One of the biggest reductions in that period of time that the Hospital has known!! They are so pleased and happy!

So, here we are, I am still taking what is turning out to be a miracle drug for me. It has been the most amazing moment of God’s grace for me as well. There is every chance that the tumour will continue to reduce and that the drug may even eliminate the cancer from my body altogether. Although this remains to be seen.

I want to share this Good News with you! And I want to thank you for your continued prayers while I have bee out of circulation. I still have something of a mountain to climb to get anything like well again. I am very grateful to those parishioners who have been helping my eating problem by regularly bring me food. I’ve been able to make a little bit of contact with the School, and I’m grateful for the children’s concern for me and their prayers. I’m still a part of what is happening in School in spite of very infrequent appearances. I can only say that I would like you to join with me in thanking God for his goodness, for holding me in his hands, and for seemingly having more that he wants me to do!

God bless you all. Fr Paul.




Born 21st February 1949
Ordained 12th January 1974
Served in these areas
King’s Norton 1974-76
Cotton College !976-77
Maryvale 1977-82
St Chad’s Cathedral 1982-85
Stafford 1985-87
Rome 1987-89
Stoke on Trent 1989-97
Alridge 1997-99
Maryvale Institute 1999-20013 (Director 2000-2012)
St Benedict’s Atherstone 2014-





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