A&B Crest Saint Anselms Catholic Church, Churt Road, Beacon Hill, Hindhead GU26 6PD

History

St Anselm 2St Anselm

Saint Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109) was the outstanding Christian philosopher and theologian of the eleventh century.

Anselm of Canterbury (Aosta c. 1033 – Canterbury 21 April 1109), also called of Aosta for his birthplace, and of Bec for his home monastery, was a Benedictine monk, a philosopher, and a prelate of the church who held the office of Archbishop of Canterbury from 1093 to 1109. Called the founder of scholasticism, he is famous as the originator of the ontological argument for the existence of God.

Born into the noble family of Candia, he entered the Benedictine order at the Abbey of Bec at the age of twenty-seven, where he became abbot in 1079. He became Archbishop of Canterbury under William II of England, and was exiled from England from 1097 to 1100, and again from 1105 to 1107 under Henry I of England as a result of the investiture controversy, the most significant conflict between Church and State in Medieval Europe.

Anselm was proclaimed a Doctor of the Church in 1720 by a Papal Bull of Pope Clement XI

(taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anselm_of_Canterbury)

more information about St Anselm and his philosophical thinking/teaching at http://www.iep.utm.edu/anselm/

 

Past to Present of St Anselm’s Church here in Beacon Hill, Hindhead

(Please feel free to e-mail me - see my e-mail address on the contacts page if you have any details which could be added to this section - my information is sketchy and I would love to add the interesting details of the history and development of St Anselms community from its beginnings to the present day)


In 1934, Major Arthur and Mrs Hunt of Hale House, Churt, converted an old barn on their property into a private chapel and then a monthly mass was established. Then, in 1937, the chapel was open for weekly Sunday Mass.
In 1950, when Churt – Hindhead was still part of Haslemere, the Parish Priest, Fr Pitts called a meeting of the community at which it was announced that Sunday Mass would be said at Pineacres at the invitation of Mr and Mrs Callanan. Following the meeting, the site of St Anselm’s was purchased for the sum of £700.
In was in 1954 that St Anselm’s was created as an independent parish with Fr Tanner as its Parish Priest. Fr Tanner was ordered by the Bishop to find proper accommodation and he moved to Beacon Hill Park. The Priest’s house was built in 1955 and a year later the statue of Our Lady and the Holy Child was designed and carved by Michael Lindsey-Clark.

 

St Anselm’s in Uganda

In 1998, St Anselm’s, Beacon Hill, decided to mark the Millennium by supporting an African priest, Fr Larry Ssendegeya, in building two church/community centres way out in the bush in Eastern Uganda in the Parish of Butebo.  The parish was over 400 sq km in size, with 25 ‘out-stations’, where Fr Larry offered Mass as often as he could.  These Masses were often offered in the open air, as shown.  Our efforts helped him build St Anselm’s at Kapunyasi and St Anthony’s at Kasiebai.  Shown is the Bishop consecrating the churches.

Afterwards, our work with Fr Larry continued and we helped him build a new Presbytery for himself and other priests.  He was a charismatic personality and several of the parishioners at Beacon Hill went out to Uganda to meet and stay with him.  Sadly, Fr Larry died young, aged 57, in 2008.  His legacy is immense.

 

One of the things he did before he died was to encourage us to sponsor one of his parishioners, Wekona Rogers, who had started to train for the priesthood.  Wekona came from a very poor family, with no hope of proceeding without help.  This we have done ever since.

St Anselm’s Developing World Group

Our Group, which has been operating since the late 80’s, took on the role of acting as the support channel for St Anselm’s to Wekona Rogers.  For the last three years we have been supporting him in his journey to the Priesthood through prayers and finance.

Having completed his ‘A’ levels in Mbale in Eastern Uganda, Wekona started his training at Gulu in the north of the country.  He has recently graduated from there with a 2.1 and now moves to the National Seminary at Fort Portal in Western Uganda.  The pictures show him at his graduation ceremony.  He is now embarking on a very ambitious programme: a final Diploma from the Seminary; a Degree from the Urbanian Pontifical University in Rome; and then a Masters from Makerere University in Uganda in Theological and Pastoral Studies.  God willing, he will achieve his Deaconate in July 2013 and Priesthood in July 2014.

Besides support to Wekona, St Anselm’s Developing World Group, over the years, has been providing financial support and prayers for people in many countries, including Zimbabwe, India, Nepal, Madagascar and Sri Lanka.

 

More recent history of St Anselm's, Beacon Hill, Hindhead - the parish became part of the Parish of Haslemere, Hindhead & Chiddingfold in (Date)

A mass trial looking at how to integrate the three parish communities and provide a regular mass time resulted in the recent change in our Mass time to a regular Saturday evening slot - the Parish Community of St Anselms is currently adapting to that change and how best to provide for the social aspect that has always been a special part our community now that the Mass finishes so much later. Lighting is being looked at - and how best to provide the best "Welcome" - to Mass and to our Parish room for refreshments and a chat after mass - for our previous Parish Community - and our newer Community - we are looking forward to getting to know our New Mass Attendees since the changeover!

 

A REFLECTION ON THE RECENT CHANGE

by one of our parishioners - Cecilia Douglas

Saint Anselm December 2011

Sadly no more streaming sunlight
Casting beautiful shades so bright
Pouring in through stained glass
As Father Chris says Holy Mass
We must not feel doom and gloom
We have each other and for more make room
Christ is still with us whatever the hour
Our community will survive we have the power
Though Saint Anselm Mass now on Saturdays
The Spirit will still be casting down his rays
Light and joy in this sacred beautiful place
We will meet for chat and coffee with God’s grace
Spring returns so sun light we will attain
The Dove of Peace will once more reflect again

Cecilia Douglas

 

A look at the Parish Priests of St Anselms

Terence Tanner 1954 - 58
Michael Fahey 1958 - 60
Leonard Walmore 1960 - 66
William Parker 1966 - 66
Walter Quinlan 1966 - 75
Jeremiah Corcoran 1975 - 79
Edmund Daly 1979 - 83
John Metcalf 1983 - 85
Francis McHugh 1985 - 87
Leonard Turner 1987 - 92
Kevin Griffin 1992 - 95
John Haugh 1995 - 97
Patrick Emmanuel 1997 - 98
Anthony Lovegrove 1998 - 01
Christopher Benyon 2001 - 07
Stephen Hardaker 2007 - 10
Christopher Bergin 2010 - Current Parish Priest

 

Look at our Gallery page for "Photos then and now" - as per above - if you've got any photos you'd like in our gallery please send them via e-mail