Mgr Madders emptied churches on Sunday, March 6, by organising a retreat day

Mgr Richard Madders startled his parish one Sunday in November when he said at all Masses: “I love you dearly but I want empty churches on Sunday, March 6.”

Having got their attention he then went on to invite everybody to attend the Camberley and Bagshot parish retreat day organised for Sunday, March 6.

On the day, 130 parishioners gathered at St Augustine’s Primary School in Frimley, Surrey, by kind permission of the head, Carmel Smith. David Payne, director of Catholic Faith Exploration (CaFE), led morning and afternoon sessions on the subject of love, powerfully supported by Steve Murray, who expressed the same message through the medium of mime.

The children had their own special time and after lunch presented everybody with pictures and song centred on the Gospel of the day. A joyful celebration of Mass concluded the retreat. After Mass it was gifts all round as Mr Payne and Mr Murray were thanked, as were members of the parish evangelisation group.