Our Chaplaincy team is here for everyone. We are based in the Winton Building, room 30, next door to the Chapel and are here to provide support for all members of the University community.
Olena Waskiewicz first encountered Buddhism more than two decades ago and has since practiced with various teachers in UK and Europe. Her core practice is Zen and she is currently engaged in a formal programme of traditional Koan study. She is an official student of Roshi Sunya Kjolhede, the founder and co-abbot of Windhorse Zen Centre in Asheville, North Carolina, as well as a member of Bodhidharma Zen Centre in Falenica, Poland.
Weekly drop-in guided meditation practice session for staff: 1-2pm on Wednesdays in West Downs Contemplation Space
Weekly drop-in guided meditation practice session for students: 3-4pm on Wednesdays in Chapel (The Anchorage)
Introduction to Meditation event during Welcome Week
Half-day retreat on campus in May/June
Who we are
University Chaplain: Revd Fiona Gibbs
Fiona studied for a BA in Christian Ministry in Lancaster, and then an MA in Theological Studies in Nottingham, before being ordained in 2000. She has served in three parishes in Winchester Diocese, along with other leadership responsibilities, before taking a role in an Academy in Southampton as a Pastoral Leader. She is passionate about finding the full potential in every individual person, and pastorally connecting and sharing in life’s journeys with them, as they experience the endless gift of God’s grace.
Catholic Chaplain: Father Marco
Father Marco belongs to the Priestly Fraternity of the Missionaries of Saint Charles Borromeo, a society of apostolic life present in seventeen countries in the world. He was ordained priest in 2017 in Rome and he was sent to England in 2019. He is Assistant Priest of St Swithun Wells Parish, which brings together the six worshipping communities of Our Lady Queen of the Apostles in Bishops Waltham, St Edward the Confessor in Chandlers Ford, Holy Cross in Eastleigh, St Swithun Wells in Fair Oak, St Joseph’s in Romsey, and St Andrew’s in North Baddesley.
Each week there are different activities:
- Monday 9 - 10am Chapel – Breakfast and Bible Study
- Monday 1 - 2pm Chapel - Art Cafe with Music
- Tuesday 1 - 2pm Chapel - Come and walk the labyrinth.
- Tuesday 2 - 3pm Chapel - Christian prayers for students hosted by local churches.
- Tuesday 5.30pm Chapel - Catholic Evening Prayer with Fr Marco. Afterwards, dinner and chat locally.
- Wednesday 1 - 2pm Chapel - The University Eucharist followed by a free informal soup and bread lunch.
- Wednesday 1 - 2pm West Downs Contemplation Space - Buddhist meditation/ mindfulness for staff.
- Wednesday 2 - 3pm Anchorage (Chapel) - Contemplative Community Meeting.
- Wednesday 3 - 4pm Anchorage (Chapel) - Buddhist meditation/ mindfulness for students.
- Thursday 2 - 3pm Chapel - Christian prayers for students hosted by local churches.
- Thursday 6 - 8pm Chapel - Student Christian Movement with supper
SHAYKH RIZWAN AL AZHARI
Shaykh Rizwan is an Islamic scholar and teacher. He is a graduate of Al Karam school and its Islamic Studies Department, Al Azhar University in Cairo and Cambridge Muslim College. He is currently the Head Imam in Bashir Ahmed Mosque in Southampton and serves as religious advisor to the Muslim Council of Southampton.
There is a Muslim Prayer Room located at the rear of Winton Building in the King Alfred Quarter. The room is segregated to ensure a dedicated space for both brothers and sisters.
There are ablution and shoe storage facilities, as well as copies of the Qur’an and some pieces of Islamic text. To provide some extra comfort there are also beanbags, coat hooks and a wall mirror available.
The Muslim Prayer Room is open Monday to Friday 6am-9pm. If you wish to worship outside of these hours, our Site Stewards can provide suitable access. Please phone them on 01962 827666 to make arrangements.
Want to join a shared community along with your fellow sisters and brothers? Join the University of Winchester’s Islamic Society. The society is open to all students who are interested in learning more about Islam. The society is also keen to host a variety of community, social and academically engaging events throughout the year.
Halal Food at the University of Winchester
Although Halal food is not served in the Food Hall, the Student Union shop serves a selection of certified Halal samosas and sandwiches, such as the URBAN eat range.
In Winchester city centre there are several establishments and restaurants that serve Halal meat.