St Wilfrid’s, Duncombe Place, YO1 7EF
Confessions are heard before all Masses
St Wilfrid's Church, York, was originally built in the medieval era and once stood where the Assembly Rooms are now. The church fell into disuse and was demolished in the sixteenth century. From 1760, a priest’s house and chapel operated quietly on Little Blake Street, and a small chapel opened on the present site of St Wilfrid’s in 1802.
In 1864 the new St Wilfrid’s Church opened. Its prominent position was possible because of the clearing of the streets in front of the Minster and the creation of Duncombe Place. For the first thirteen years of its life, St Wilfrid's Church was the cathedral of the Diocese of Beverley, after which the diocese was split in to Leeds and Middlesbrough Dioceses. St Wilfrid’s is still known as the Mother Church of the City of York and is the spiritual heart of the Catholic faith in our city.
In 2013, Bishop Terence Patrick Drainey invited the Congregation of the Oratory to make a foundation at St Wilfrid’s. The first Fathers arrived in October that year. In November 2019, Pope Francis permanently established the Congregation of the Oratory in York at St Wilfrid’s Church.
St Wilfrid’s is a visible sign of the Gospel to all those who visit York. It is open every day from 8am to 6pm as a place of prayer and pilgrimage.
If you aren’t sure how to read the Bible or it seems confusing, come along to the Upper Room at the Oratory, on Tuesday at 1pm (we also hold sessions on Monday at 7:30pm). Fr Daniel will read and explain a few chapters of the scriptures with opportunities to ask questions. Tea and coffee will be available and you can bring your lunch.
The peal of ten bells in the Oratory Tower is rung by an experienced and enthusiastic band of volunteers. They ensure that the faithful are called to worship at the 10:30am and 12 noon Masses every Sunday and come together when weddings are proclaimed and significant civic and national events are celebrated.
The Schola sing the chant for the 12 noon Mass on Sundays and rehearse in the Oratory's Upper Room. The Schola is open to new members so please contact us if you are interested in joining!
The choir sings a variety of chants, motets, and hymns. If you are interested in joining please get in touch. Rehearsals usually take place at the Oratory Church.
Our founder St Philip Neri gathered men around him, teaching them to pray and encouraging them in holiness. Today, the Brothers of the Little Oratory meet at 2.30pm on the 4th Sunday of the month. If you would like to come along, please get in touch with us. Those who wish to be more closely joined to the Oratorian life may make a formal commitment, while others can take part as they wish. Note, we don't meet in August.
If you aren’t sure how to read the Bible or it seems confusing, come along to the Upper Room at the Oratory, on Mondays at 7:30pm (we also hold sessions on Tuesdays at 1pm). Fr Daniel will read and explain a few chapters of the scriptures with opportunities to ask questions. Tea and coffee will be available.
Sunday Oratory takes place in the Oratory Upper Room after our 12 noon Sunday Mass and refreshments are provided. Following this, there are various activities that you can get involved in, such as Latin classes or the Dante Reading Group. Vespers are at 4pm, and are followed by tea. Note this is term time only.
The Newman Group is for young adults, aged 18-35, and meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of the month at the Oratory Church. The group shares a time of silent prayer followed by a talk and socialising. Please contact Fr Stephen to learn more. Note the Newman Group doesn't meet during the month of August.
Explore our latest news and events.
Get involved in the life of our community.