Celebrating being part of the diocese, part of Catholic Exeter, and one with the historic Catholic Church in the city
Together with Blessed Sacrament parish we form Catholic Exeter. We try to do together what we can do better together, and we try to co-operate and co-ordinate everything else to support each other. As the number of priests declines over the next 15 years, it may be that the priests from both our parishes will have to help provide the sacraments at outlying chapels of ease as well. If this comes to pass we share all the resources we have willingly as part of the diocese of Plymouth under one bishop.
We are also one with the historic catholic church in Exeter and the surrounding area, with the same faith and sacraments that they had. Our great link with the past that stands out above all others is our connection with St Boniface, the principal patron saint of our diocese, and the patron saint of Devon.
The earliest geographical reference made in the records of St Boniface is his association with Exeter
where he was schooled by the Benedictine monks at the monastery which once stood almost next to
where our church now is. The site of the monastery was later taken over by the church of St Mary Major
and whose location is marked by the iron cross on the cathedral green, about 150m to the north of our
church. Only in much later records about St Boniface is Crediton mentioned.
Our link with our diocesan patron saint is therefore strong. We are only yards from the site of the monastery
where he came as a child oblate and where he started his monastic and clerical life, and we are the successors
of the catholic faith and life of that monastery. It is right that we have in our church an altar and a window
dedicated to St Boniface, and we ought to make more of our association with our Saint.
It may be that there already is a relic of St Boniface in the altar dedicated to him, but there is no record
of this to be sure. We are able however to obtain a (second) relic of St Boniface, and we plan to house it in
a reliquary on the altar for the prayers and veneration of those who come to our church. A mock up of what the
reliquary might look like is shown below. We hope to install the reliquary in the 2025 jubilee year.
This mock up and some more drawings have been given to an award winning metal worker for him to
produce some designs for the reliquary.