Observing your faith in the UK

I think about this a lot because people ask where a good church is. I write this after returning from mass and listening to the church bells ring from the village church.

Where a good church is subjective and this is a chance that people can get a chance to see how your faith is observed overseas. I am Catholic and when I was in I went to mass onbase for a while but tried out the local church in Newmarket and loved it. I am an early riser and so the early mass at Kirtling Catholic Church suited me (lovely churhc built in 1886). They had tea and coffee afterwards and I joined in and that lead me to be accepted in a group of people. In fact, one attended my wedding ceremony. 

What the point is of this post is I suggest you google churches of your faith and attend them yourelves. You make the decision. I think it is probably better for you to attend a church in your village if they have your denomination and your children go to the local school because it builds bridges and that can help you integrate more. You will then see them out and about and it gives you a base to get to know the British. They like their clubs and faith and you will become a member like them. You have to attend a few times to get the feel and stay for the coffee, this allows people (the British) to be able to come to talk to you (or you them!). You can get involved in the events there and become part of their community.

Some faiths might find it harder to find a local church, I often joke with my husband that I will convert to  become an Anglican just so I can go to church in the village. Catholics might not have as many options because of the historical conflict all beginning with Henry VIII but in bigger towns like Ely, Bury St Edmunds and Cambridge have them. There are also some in villages where there are pockets of Catholics like in Newmarket with the Irish and Polish for the racing and Mildenhall. But if you google you should be able to locate them.

The reason why I think it is worth trying every church out because we all have different expectations. I go to a church that was 5 minutes walk from my house but now a 15 minute drive. There is a colleague at work that went to the same mass but now prefers the on in Cherry Hinton (a suburb of Cambridge) and there are a few Catholic Churches in Cambridge and one has a reputation of being "very academic" despite all Catholic Churches reading the same liturgy every day.

There are a lot of the other denominations of Christian churches because the English were more tolerant of other types as long as it wasn't Catholic.

People who are Jewish will probably find fewer places of worship but Norwich and Cambridge have synagogues. 

Also it gives you a break to not be anything military and be a normal person. I used to really like the break because the military defines you as a person and that is why when people retire or separate they struggle (I did). Experiencing my faith here has helped me be part of the community I live in and thought you might find that too.

All the Best!

American to Britain