Wadham College Chapel welcomes all members of College as well as families and friends. The ethos of the chaplaincy is warm and friendly and seeks to provide a focus for the spiritual life of the whole College community. Chapel events are inclusive and gather students and staff with diverse perspectives on matters of faith without assuming any particular denominational affiliation. The Chapel is open all day and is a place where you can light a candle, offer prayers or simply take time out in stillness and peace. It is a holy space where we can enter into the search for meaning, comfort and rest.
The College Chaplain Wendy Wale is available to all members of the College community, including members of different faith traditions and those with no religious affiliation. She can be consulted in confidence about any matter of concern, whether personal, practical or spiritual – academic pressures, relationship difficulties, bereavement, anxiety, or simply to talk generally about life and what it brings up.
Through the life of the Chapel, the chaplain works to integrate the intellectual and the spiritual, and to this end organises speaker meetings, discussion forums and reading groups.
Attending Choral Evensong
The principal service in Chapel is Choral Evensong, sung by the Chapel Choir each Sunday during term time at 6pm. At Wadham, this traditional Church of England service provides the framework to gather a congregation that reflects the diversity of the College, including students, staff and friends who are members of a number of Christian denominations, who are atheist or agnostic, and who belong to different faith communities. The atmosphere in Chapel is friendly, welcoming and marked by a refreshing ‘relaxed formality’. We hope to provide a place where College members and friends can arrive at a greater understanding of others’ viewpoints in a spirit of open enquiry – both as part of the service itself, and as we share a meal or a drink together afterwards. Please see the term card, available in the antechapel, for details of services and visiting speakers.
Services and Events
During the week, join the Chaplain for informal chat and refreshments in room 3:1 All welcome.
- The Late Breakfast Club is on Tuesdays from 11am-12 noon; pastries, tea and coffee provided.
- Afternoon tea (with cake) is on Thursday from 4-5pm
There are weekly services and events in Chapel during term times, including times for shared silence, prayer and reflection and celebrations of Holy Communion. Please see the term card and the Chapel notice board in the lodge for details.
The College is delighted to host Weddings and Services of Blessing and Dedication for alumni and current members of the Wadham community. Please contact the Chaplain between 12 and 18 months in advance regarding available dates.
The Gothic style Chapel is part of the original College building, built between 1610 and 1613 to the design of William Arnold. It features an intricately carved screen, by William Bolton, and an original pulpit. The notable Father Willis organ, which dates from 1862, is one of his few instruments to survive without substantial modification of its tonal design. More
Chapel services and events
Meet our Chaplain
The Chapel Choir, and choral sacred music, play an important part in the strong Chapel community that exists at Wadham.
Our Choir is a mixed, auditioned choir that sings at weekly Sunday services during term. It is made up of people from many faiths and none, but its members are necessarily sympathetic with the Anglican tradition. In addition to leading hymns, the choir performs a varied range of sacred music from every era.
Led by Dr Katharine Pardee, Director of Chapel Music at Wadham, the choir rehearses at 4pm every Sunday for Evensong at 6.30pm. Anyone interested in joining the choir should contact Katharine (link below). The service is always followed by a free dinner in Hall.
Contact our Director of Chapel Music
Serving the Wider Community
Our Chapel community supports a variety of community projects.
If you are interested in volunteering for any of the Chapel community projects below, please get in touch with Wendy Wale. Projects include:
• The Gatehouse
We support ‘The Gatehouse’, an Oxford-based charity providing food, shelter and company to Oxford's homeless and poorly housed population. Join our volunteers to preparing sandwiches – equipment and food is all supplied.
• The Wadham–Tower Hamlets Tutoring Programme
Operating in the East End of London, in a largely Bangladeshi community, Wadham volunteers help children at Hermitage Primary School develop language skills by talking and reading with them. Volunteers visit the school on Friday afternoons and children from the school visit Wadham on a school trips.
• Ss Mary and John Primary School
Wadham students visit Ss Mary and John Primary School in Oxford to read with pupils for an hour each week.