News Extra

News Extra

Due to limited space on our paper newsletter additional items will be published here.  This will include articles surrounding the wider church and global issues as well as any charity and social justice initiatives. Please check back regularly for updates and keep an eye on our main newsletter and social media pages for more information.

Synod 2021 – 2021

Pope Francis has provided the universal church with a wonderful opportunity to play their part in determining the shape of the church in the light of the corona virus. He’s not looking simply to those who love their church but to those also who in their dreaming visualise a very different looking church in which all will be embraced and energised. Now is the time for all God’s people to ask themselves what part they want to play at the local level in creating something new if indeed that is required. 

As part of the discussion each of us are called to participate in an examination of the traditional exclusive position of power and separation as we look forward in fellowship. All people are invited to speak with courage, freedom and truth, and charity and must all take responsibility for the future growth of our own communities and as part of the wider church.  The Synod is very much about listening and we invite you to have an open heart and open ears as we enter into this process of “Journeying Together” as this is only possible if it is based on communal listening. Find out how your prayers, thoughts and dreams for the future of the Church can be fed into our Diocese; over the coming months, the questions and the themes will be unpacked and there will be opportunities for you to speak in your own community or you can contribute your individual responses about what is being revealed to you and can find out more about the consultation process and what is being asked of us below. This diocesan stage only lasts until January 2022, so we are asked to make this one of our priorities for the next three months. ‘Synodality is not a corporate strategic exercise. Rather it is a spiritual process that is led by the Holy Spirit’

The Tynemouth Priory Partnership will meet on on Saturday 29th January 2022 to discuss how we as a partnership can give feedback to the Diocese on the themes and questions of the synodal process.  More information will follow. If you would like to attend the meeting please contact Fr David who will pass on your request – please bear in mind that the COVID situation may impact how many people can attend.

There is documentation available on the diocesan website and this can be accessed via the link below:

The United Nations is marking the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-based Violence from 25 November to 10 December 2021. 

Nearly 1 in 3 women have been abused in their lifetime. Violence against women and girls is one of the world’s most prevalent human rights violations, taking place every day, many times over, in every corner of the globe. It has serious short- and long-term physical, economic and psychological consequences on women and girls, preventing their full and equal participation in society. The magnitude of its impact, both in the lives of individuals and families and society as a whole, is immeasurable. Conditions created by the pandemic – including lockdowns, reduced mobility, heightened isolation, stress and economic uncertainty – have led to an alarming spike in domestic violence and have further exposed women and girls to other forms of violence, from child marriage to sexual harassment online.  Only 1 in 10 women said that victims would go to the police for help.

For further information click the link below: 

As part of the North Tyneside Council’s domestic abuse strategy we are taking part in 16 days of action with a range of events and awareness-raising activities.  During the 16 days the White Ribbon flag will be flown outside Quadrant and St. Mary’s Lighthouse will be illuminated. The main event will the the council’s annual DIVA (Don’t Ignore Violence and Abuse) Walk, which takes place on Sunday 28 November, starting at Tynemouth Priory at 11am

If you are affected by any of the issues outlined please click the button below for more information around emergency contacts and local support available.


The Vicariate for Caritas was established by Bishop Robert in January 2020. A prophetic step as three months later the church, along with the whole of society, was in lockdown, experiencing great loneliness, fear and need. Caritas Hexham and Newcastle helped to overcome these issues and continues to help us make real the vision of Pope Francis within our diocese, that of being one people, interdependent upon one another. It has seldom been more needed than right now.  

If you follow the links you will discover the great work which is taking place, in your name, by a few dedicated staff and so many volunteers. If what you see moves you, then please respond. Perhaps you can offer your time and talents to one of the groups mentioned. You may be inspired to establish a local group or take up the call to advocate on behalf of someone in need. You may be able to support or lead a campaign to address injustice. You may be in a position to contribute financially to our work or you may be in need of the help and support that one of our groups provides. If I may speak on behalf of all involved we need your help and truly look forward to hearing from you.

Please follow the links below to read the stories, open your hearts so that together we can live out our Diocesan values and build God’s kingdom here on earth – Trust, Service, Respect, Integrity and Compassion.

The Art of Dying Well

What do we mean when we talk about ‘dying well’? This is one of life’s greatest questions. Dying well, or what constitutes a ‘good’ death will mean different things to us all. Our understanding is informed by a multitude of influences drawn from our individual journeys through life. But there are many universal questions, here we’ll explore some of the biggest questions and ideas, including what the Church says about death. The process of coming to terms with death and dying, can bring to the surface deeper questions about what life is all about. These questions can occur in relation to your own mortality, or surrounding the death of a loved one. It is quite natural to have these spiritual concerns.

In the Catholic faith it is believed that life is a precious gift from God and death simply opens the way to new life. Planning ahead can help to overcome fear and anxiety. Perhaps it is possible to take the sting out of death and encourage acceptance of it as a part of life itself.  This service contains advice and options, and answers to frequently asked questions which will help guide you through what is often a very difficult time.

The Art of Dying Well offers practical and spiritual support to those faced with the prospect of death and dying. It is a site for everyone, please click the link below for further information:

Justice and Peace Refugee Project
Kindness is more important today than it has ever been. The isolation of the past year or so has underlined how even the smallest acts of consideration can break down barriers and brighten the lives of the people around us. We all know that #OneKindWord can transform someone’s day and make it brighter. In contrast, one unkind word has the power to unravel someone’s hopes and happiness in a split second. 
Asylum seekers and refugees bear the weight of unkind words regularly. After all they have been through, being forced to leave their homes and travelling through unimaginable hardships to reach sanctuary, they deserve to feel safe here. Unkind words, however, can completely undermine their sense of safety and belonging. In a world that can sometimes feel like it’s filled with negativity, one kind word can provide a moment of hope. It can be a turning point. It can change someone’s perspective. It can change their day. It can change the course of a conversation and break the cycle one kind word leads to another.
Kindness fuels kindness. So from the playground to Parliament, and from our phones to our homes, together, our actions can fire a chain reaction that powers positivity. We invite you to be the good voice – to take opportunities to share kind words that seek to give hope, show solidarity and offer support to people in your community. Be the start of a kindness chain reaction today….it starts with one kind word. It starts today. We live in a troubled world where people are having to flee from persecution and danger on a daily basis. Your support can help bring Christ’s healing love into some very difficult situations.
The Diocesan Justice and Peace Refugee Project offers a warm welcome and provides basic support for those seeking asylum and refuge in our community and has offered a caring heart, a listening ear and a helping hand to some of our region’s most vulnerable people.
Click below for more information:
Illuminating Ushaw 2021

Tis’ the season to be jolly, join us for dazzling lights and festive fun as Illuminating Ushaw returns for a bigger and better throughout December!

Follow the Illuminated Christmas Trail, stroll through Christmas Tree Avenue, marvel at the Illuminated Historic House, visit the Traditional Nativity Scene, gaze up at the Giant Gnome Trees, explore our Willow Tunnel, indulge in Seasonal Treats and be blown away by the Largest Festive Light Installation in the North of England at over 150 metres long!

Tickets start from £8 – click below for further details:


Proud Catholics

We are a support group for and run by Catholics in the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle, who identify as LGBT+ or who are questioning their sexual or gender identity. Friends and family members are welcome to join us.  We meet on the third Tuesday of each month for a varied programme. We are back to meeting at St. Andrew’s RC Church in Newcastle, but it is also possible to connect through Zoom. 

We welcome you!  
You are especially invited to come along if:
– you are a LGBT+ Catholic who wants to meet other LGBT+ Catholics and share spiritual reflection, prayer, social time
– you are an LGBT+ person and you are wondering whether there is a place for you in the Catholic Church
– you are an LGBT+ ally
– it seems the right place for you.
Our next meeting is on Tuesday 21st December at 7:30pm – click below for further information.
Hexham & Newcastle Diocesan Lourdes Pilgrimage

As preparations begin for our annual Pilgrimage to Lourdes from Friday 29th July to Friday 5th August 2022, it is hoped that this year, we will be able to travel together as a Diocese once more. In order to aid the planning stages, it would be helpful if you could indicate your interest in travelling to Lourdes next summer and state if you would be willing to offer any help or volunteer for any of the roles that support the smooth running of the Pilgrimage. Thank you so much for your service and support.  Please click below for further information and the expression of interest form: 

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