Our Lady of the Assumption

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Our Lady of the Assumption


The Roman Catholic chapel of Our Lady of the Assumption, which operated in a former cinema and badminton hall in Gorey for 60 years, closed in 2013

The Catholic Church closed the chapel in Gorey because there were not enough priests to provide services, after retirement at 85 of Father Brian Sandeman.

'We cannot justify mass for a congregation of only 40 people on average, Monsignor Nicholas France, Catholic Dean of Jersey said: "I thank Father Brian for the way he has devotedly cared for those who have attended our Gorey Mass.

'However, as each Sunday, in our churches across the island, we celebrate mass for a few hundred people, and usually many more, we cannot justify mass for a congregation of only 40 people on average."

He said the other Catholic priests in the island already had three or four masses to celebrate for different congregations each Sunday and after review it was decided Gorey was the only one they could not sustain.

Congregational chapel

Originally built as a Bible Christian Chapel in 1864, the building served as a small cinema for Gorey Village. It was converted into a cinema in 1916. It is unclear when this closed, but the building became a badminton hall then, in 1953, a Roman Catholic church.

For many years, Father Brian Sandeman, who was ordained in 1993, at the age of 65, after the death of his wife, former Senator Jane Sandeman, had responsibility for the chapel as part of his work in the east of the island.

The closing of the chapel proved to be highly controversial in Gorey Village and there was even a petition to the Pope to stop it being knocked down for houses.

But the Catholic Church maintained its view that houses were the best option for the site, because over the years, no one had shown an interest in using the building for purposes other than Catholic worship. Eventually, despite opposition in the village, plans were passed for cottages to be built in place of the old building.

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