Welcome to St Clement's
The Website of St Clement's Church, Jersey (Channel Islands)


At the time of the Reformation the beautiful font (pictured top right), said to date back from c.1400, was removed from the church and buried in the churchyard. It was later retrieved during the middle of the 19th Century.

 

The Reformation reached the island of Jersey in a severely Calvanistic form during 1550. As was the case with all Jersey Churches, and with the majority of the churches in England, all traces of the ancient worship were swept aside. The Rev G.R. Balleine gives a graphic account (it is almost as if he had been an eye-witness) of what happened in the case of St. Clement's -

 

“Altars, images, stained glass, all were smashed to pieces. Endowments for masses and lamps were confiscated to the Crown. Only one bell was left during this period.The first Protesant Rector (Soler) was a Dominican Friar and he did his work so thoroughly that nothing remains but one empty bracket. This bracket was called the piscina and was located in the chancel. It was here that the Priest cleansed his hands before Mass. In the North Chapel there was a much more primitive piscina and an ambry (or almery) which was the cupboard which contained the altar vessels, the consecrated oil for anointing the sick, and the reserved sacrament”.

 

During the hundred years following the Reformation the Church became a “Huguenot Temple”, that is to say the form of worship was that practised by the Protestants of France, except for the five years under Mary when the Catholic ritual was restored and for a short period during which Dean Bandinel secured a reluctant use of the Prayer Book. During this time the men entered through the West door and women by another door (now walled up) at the end of the North transept. The South door did not exist. In Commonwealth days a large gallery was erected at the West end of the Church. The altar was an oak table (now in the new vestry) and was set in front of the pulpit.


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