Clifton Diocese

Clifton Diocese is the Catholic diocese covering the West of England and includes the City and County of Bristol, the counties of Gloucestershire, Somerset, Wiltshire, North Somerset, South Gloucestershire and Bath and North East Somerset.

Clifton Cathedral


Clifton Cathedral (The Cathedral Church of Saints Peter and Paul) in Bristol is the Mother Church of the Diocese of Clifton and the Seat of Bishop Declan Lang, the ninth Bishop of Clifton.

Bishop Declan Lang

is the ninth Bishop of Clifton. Within the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, he is Chair of the Department of International Affairs

A Future full of Hope

The Year of Communion we will focus on a Spirituality of Communion and how we are called and saved, not as individuals but as God’s people. 

Clifton Diocese

We welcome all to join us!

Sacred space

Discover a wealth of prayer resources to support and enhance your daily prayer                                     .


Tasked by our Bishop with implementing the vision of the Liturgy Constitution of the Second Vatican Council

Laudato ‘Si

.On the Care for our Common Home is the Pope’s Encyclical Letter on the environment and human ecology.

Resources and information for ‘The year of the Word’ – the God who Speaks. See how you can get involved                                                        .

Pope Francis

The Pope’s Monthly Intentions videos are to assist in the dissemination of monthly intentions of the Holy Father

Faith & Formation

Catholicism is the most ancient and enduring Christian Church. Jesus established his Apostles under the authority of St Peter to go and proclaim his love to the world.

Youth Ministry

Clifton Diocese Youth Ministry provides opportunities for young people to further their involvement in the Catholic Church


Find all the information about our Diocesan pilgrimages: Lourdes, Glastonbury and the Holy Land


“Being loved and being kept safe go to the very core of the Church’s Ministry to children and vulnerable adults

Live Daily Mass

You can watch a daily Mass live from Clifton Cathedral below at 9.30am

If you would like to donate to Clifton Diocese or the Clifton Cathedral in this testing time and while our churches are closed, please do so below:

Clifton Diocese

Clifton Cathedral

Clifton Diocese

Our Latest News

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Missio, the Pope’s official charity for world mission, is providing alternative ways for supporters to donate to the Red Box scheme during lockdown. Due to COVID-19, supporters are unable to get their iconic Red Boxes, of which there are over 200,000 in homes across...

CYMFed To Host Online Series Of Youth Ministry Talks 

CYMFed To Host Online Series Of Youth Ministry Talks 

CYMFed, the Catholic Youth Ministry Federation of England and Wales, is hosting a series of online talks for the youth ministry community featuring expert speakers from across the globe.  “Journeying Together” aims to inspire, inform and encourage youth ministers as...

Extract from Guidance for the Celebration of Mass

This guidance has been issued by the Catholic Bishops’ of England and Wales for the celebration of Mass. It assumes that the general guidance published by the Conference, based on Government Guidance on the safe opening of Places of Worship for individual prayer, is in place. In particular, the maximum safe operating capacity of the church, based on social distancing guidelines, should be clearly signposted at the door and the number and position within the church of people attending at any one time should be overseen by volunteer stewards.

Social Distancing

The Government maintains that the 2m social distancing requirements should be applied where possible. However, the Government has said it is possible to go to “1m plus”. This option may be considered in order to increase the capacity in the church. This means you can space people more closely (with a minimum of 1m) providing a mitigation of risk is also applied. In the case of 1m plus, this would mean the compulsory wearing of a face covering for members of the congregation. If those on the sanctuary are sufficiently distant from the congregation, there is no need to wear face coverings.

Worshippers should limit their interactions with anyone they are not attending church with, i.e. if they are attending corporate worship with one other household, wherever possible they should maintain social distancing with anyone outside of this group. Priests should remain mindful of their own personal situation with respect to potential exposure of virus transmission. It is strongly advised that those in the 70+ age group, and those who are vulnerable to infection do not distribute Holy Communion and take particular care to be constantly socially distant from the congregation. They should return to the sacristy directly after Mass has ended.

Face Coverings

Face coverings are currently mandatory on public transport and will be mandatory in shops and in supermarkets from 24th July 2020. People are also strongly encouraged to wear face coverings in enclosed public spaces where there are people they do not normally meet, such as a church

Celebration of Mass within Church Buildings

During the Mass

Any worship aids (missalettes etc) should be for single use and taken with the user when the Mass ends. They should not be left in the church at the end of Mass.

The priest, and if present, the deacon and server, should remain socially distant at all times on the sanctuary during the celebration of Mass. This is particularly important at the Gospel (for the deacon’s blessing), the Preparation of the Gifts, and the Liturgy of the Eucharist.

Readers should sanitise their hands before and after reading or be supplied with single-use gloves and should avoid touching the microphones or the Lectionary during the Liturgy of the Word, apart from page turning. The homily should be brief, to minimise the time that people are congregated in a church building. The Prayer of the Faithful should be omitted.

There should be no offertory procession of the gifts of bread and wine. The priest should have these on a credence table or the altar before Mass begins. There should be no sharing of the collection plates or bags. People should be encouraged to make their donation to the church online or via standing order. Plates or other collecting boxes for cash offerings should be placed at the entrance and exit of the church and this should be overseen by the stewards.

The Communion Rite

Members of the congregation should not exchange the sign of peace. After the prayer and its response “Behold the Lamb of God…… Lord I am not worthy,” the priest should hold up the Host to the congregation and say audibly “The Body of Christ” to which the people should respond “Amen.” In the same way, he elevates the chalice and says, “The Blood of Christ” and again the people respond “Amen.” The priests should receive Holy Communion under both kinds using his own Host and chalice.

Distribution of Holy Communion

As the congregation have already acclaimed the presence of the Lord at the Priest’s Communion, the People’s Communion is in silence with no dialogue between minister and communicant.

Once the priest has received Holy Communion, he should cleanse his hands with alcohol sanitiser before opening the pre-prepared ciborium for the Communion of the people. If there is a deacon assisting, or any other Minister of Holy Communion, they should similarly cleanse their hands and then receive communion from the priest from the people’s ciborium, and under one kind only. They should then cleanse their hands again before receiving their ciborium from which they remove the covering or pall if it is still in place.

Communion must be given silently in the hand only, with the communicant standing, and avoiding any physical contact. People should wait in their pews until instructed to move forward for Holy Communion by the stewards, always aware of the regulations on social distancing. When they approach the priest, deacon or minister of Holy Communion they should do so with arms at “full stretch” so that there is a good distance between the priest and the communicant. Their hands, palms upwards, one of top of the other, should be extended as flatly as possible. Having received Holy Communion, communicants should move back to their pews or chairs.

Once Communion is complete, the priest returns to the altar and places the unused Hosts, without touching them, into the Tabernacle and he cleanses the sacred vessels himself in the usual way.

After the Celebration of Mass

The procession from the sanctuary at the end of the Mass should ensure good social distancing. The sanctuary party should return to the sacristy after Mass. If the clergy wish to greet the people, they should remove their vestments first and not engage in any physical contact with parishioners.

The church should be closed after the Mass has finished in order to clean the space according to the Bishops’ Conference guidelines on individual prayer.

Further information

The obligation to celebrate Mass on a Sunday is still suspended. If people are unable to get to Sunday Mass, they may wish to attend a weekday Mass or follow Mass online via live streaming.

Those in early adulthood share their hopes for the Church after lockdown, recognising Pope Francis’ call to contribute their gifts and energies to the Church.

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