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St. Mark's Friary, Ipswich 1973 - 1994

St. Mark's Church and Presbytery, formerly the Friary
The Church Entrance on its Golden Jubilee

When the friars left East Bergholt in 1973, where they had also provided a parish priest for the parish of Brantham and a chaplain to the Royal Hospital School, they offered a community of four priest friars to the Bishop of East Anglia.  He decided that they would be best used by taking over the parish of St. Mark's in Ipswich, with the boundaries redrawn to include the parish of Brantham and parts of the existing parish of St. Pancras, so that East Bergholt, Brantham, Capel St. Mary and the Royal Hospital School remained in Franciscan care.  The friars were able to maintain the community, although towards the end with fewer friars, until 1994, when the ever decreasing number of friars in the Province forced them to leave Ipswich and hand back the pastoral care of St. Mark's to the diocese.

The parish of St. Mark's celebrated its Golden Jubilee on Saturday, 30th May 2009, with a Mass celebrated by the Bishop of East Anglia, the Rt Rev Michael Evans, M.Th., and many parishioners.  The friars were represented by Fr Boniface, O.F.M., now at Woodford Green as Secretary of the Province, and the Bishop recalled their 21 years in Ipswich.

The Church Interior decorated for its Jubilee





The Hall next to the church is a new addition since the friars left
The Bishop of East Anglia mingled with the people
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