About Sclerder

Our Lady of Light, Sclerder Lane, Looe , PL13 2JD

Our Lady of Light Sclerder Abbey, Looe, Cornwall

The inaugural Mass and Vespers took place at Sclerder on 6th October 1843. Fr. Marc Oleron, of Rennes, was the first cleric in charge of Sclerder. During his ministry, the patron of the Church was St. Charles Borromeo, possibly because Fr. Marc was an Oblate of St. Charles. In the middle of the nineteenth century Sclerder was served from other parishes and in due time it was decided to invite a Religious Order to Sclerder. From 1851 - 1852, the French Order, Dames de la Retraite, from Lannion in Brittany lived at Sclerder. When they left, Sclerder became an abode for priests needing a rest. According to the Records, in 1856, the title for the Mission was the "Church of St. Mary and Sclerder". A year later, however, the dedication was formally altered to "Our Lady of Light". From 1858 - 1864, a Community of Franciscan Recollect Fathers from Belgium lived at Sclerder. Their departure made room for the first Carmelite Foundation, who stayed for seven years and then moved on. The Carmelites place was then taken from 1904 - 1910 by Sisters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary (French refugees from a Convent at St. Quay in Brittany). From 1914 - 1920 another French Community took up residence, the Poor Clares from Rennes. They were succeeded in 1922 by Poor Clares from Bullingham, Hereford, who remained at the Abbey for nearly sixty years. On 30th May 1981, a second Foundation of Carmelites, from Quidenham, Norfolk, moved to Sclerder, where they remained until August 2014.

The Abbey is now home to the Chemin Neuf and parish masses continue as normal. 

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