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Chance to attend Celebrate East Anglia renewal weekend

The seventh annual Celebrate East Anglia weekend will be held on June 1 and 2 at St Benedict’s High School in Bury St Edmunds organised for the Catholic community by people who have found renewal in their faith.

 Many families have experienced the joy of celebrating their faith together over the last six years, with lively music, inspiring talks, Mass and Reconciliation and a special programme for children and young people according to co-organiser Philip Walters.

“Although Celebrate provides for families, including a creche, there is a warm welcome and a different timetable for people of all ages, so whether you are young or old, joining us for the first time or returning, coming on your own or with a group or family – you are very welcome.

“Our vision is to offer a faith-filled and fun event, which combines good Catholic teaching, inspirational speakers and celebration of the liturgy, where young and old alike join together in a vibrant atmosphere to celebrate the love of God.”

Bishop Alan Hopes will be there again this year and saying Mass on Sunday.  He is very enthusiastic and encourages everyone: “to come back again next year and bring someone with you.”

Speakers this year include:

Charles Whitehead: who along with his wife Sue, is the founder of Celebrate. He is a director of Premier Christian Radio and the Christian Healing Mission. He is a past president of International Catholic Charismatic Renewal Services and received a Papal Knighthood from Pope St Jean-Paul II in 2003.

Fr Chris Thomas: ordained priest in 1985, he has been a full-time youth chaplain, a university chaplain, a parish priest and is now the director of the Irenaeus project.  Chris has spoken at conferences in England, Ireland, and mainland Europe.  He is a Trustee of CREW Trust (Catholic Renewal in England and Wales) and is a regular contributor to Good News magazine, where he is part of the editorial committee. He is on the executive of the Catholic Spirituality Network and is a core team member of Harvesters Men’s Network.

Mary Hardiman: a former high school teacher, Mary is a Person-Centred Counsellor and Head of Wellbeing at a Pupil Health Referral Unit in Salford for teenagers with mental health problems. She spends some of her time each week giving voluntary counselling to adults in recovery from drug and alcohol addiction. Mary has a great gift for unwrapping the Scriptures and presenting them in ways that are inspiring. Her insightful reflections are full of faith, humanity and humour.

A choice of workshops will run each day and these will include:  “Prayer”, “Walking in the Spirit”, “Writing your own testimony”, “Alive in Christ”, “Spreading the Good News”, “Mothers’ Prayers”, “Ways of using the Bible”, “Renewing our Baptismal commitment” and several others.

If you would like more information about how to book visit or contact Philip Walters on 07910157584 or at