Contact

Parish Contacts:

  Parish Priest

Fr Robbie O’Callaghan    (01629) 582804

  Parish Office

New Opening Times: 9:00am until 1:30pm Monday & Friday

  Parish Assistant

Justine Hall   (01629) 582804

email: info@matlockcatholicchurch.org.uk

  Parish Deacon

Rev Richard Walsh             (via parish office)

  Parish Sister

Sr Frederica Britto             (via parish office)

Fr Robbie O'Callaghan

My journey to the priesthood was somewhat different to many young men. Born in Leicester in 1970, I attended both Holy Cross Priory and School. Then in 1978 moved house and attended Mother of God Church/St Peter's Parishes and attended Christ the King Junior School and then English Martyrs Secondary.

When I left school at sixteen I began an old fashioned apprenticeship as a Horologist (watchmaker/repairer) and worked in the industry until my late twenties. After being made redundant from this trade, I retrained in Sales and Marketing and lived and worked in London.

My first vocation, calling in life, was to marry my wife Angela on 21 August 1999 whom I had known for many years. Unfortunately Angela died after only 11 months of marriage on 2nd August 2000 of Meningitis. As you can imagine this was to be a time of severe trauma and grief. It saw my relationship with God come to be slightly strained to say the least. Eventually though I recovered, as much as anyone could, and embarked on rebuilding my life.

Part of that rebuilding was to go on many retreats to improve my relationship with God. I found a great convent in South Wales which is situated close to the sea. For the next few years I would travel from London on retreat every three months. It was on one of these trips that I continued my own discernment process and heard the Lord calling me to discern a priestly vocation. To be honest, it was a conversion experience for me, through the entire trauma of life I was being called to the priesthood. One day whilst walking on the beach, I fell to my knees and begged the Lord to let these feeling pass me by, but it wasn't to be. On my next visit to Leicester I stopped off at the vocation director's house and the rest is history.

I entered my priestly formation at Campion House, Osterley to do my A Level English Literature and Theology and moved onto the Pontifical Beda College, Rome for four years. What a place to train to be a priest in the Eternal City, I felt truly blessed. At the end of this formation I was ordained a Deacon at St Paul's Outside the Walls. Bishop Malcolm McMahon ordained me on the 26th July 2008 at the Most Blessed Sacrament Church, Leicester. What a glorious occasion to have family, friends, the parish and my fellow priests and religious there to join me in offering up my life to God in service.

I can honestly say that becoming a priest has been the most blessed thing. I have come to realise in these past few years that my journey is only starting. The gifts that come my way each day I never dreamt were possible. My life experience and my love of God have made me realise that the Lord has been walking with me all my life. I hope to take that life experience and continue to give it in service to the faithful of the parish