Update from the Vicariate

As we continue our journey through our diocesan Year of the Eucharist we have much to celebrate. The Corpus Christi procession was a beautiful celebration with a real sense of connection as a Diocesan body of the faithful. It was wonderful to be together in large numbers and to worship with one another. The spiritual openness and devotion was profound. We look forward to this becoming an annual event in the life of our Diocese. A gallery of the celebration is available to view. Our next Year of the Eucharist event will be a Mass of Thanksgiving on 14 July at St Mary’s Cathedral, see below for details.

July sees a number of other key events for the Vicariate for Faith and Mission. We have the second weekend in formation for those ‘accompanying people seeking healing.’ This course focuses on inner healing and how we walk alongside those in need. We also have the establishment of a ‘think tank’ exploring how we break open the new directory for Catechesis, looking to develop catechesis in the Diocese. We have a loud liturgy and lunch on the 10 July 2022 for families of all ages to come together to pray and to eat together – the first in a series we hope, you are all very welcome to join us – it will be loud and very child-centred. We also have the Lay Pastoral Forum meeting to unpack the Synod findings.

As I write this, we are waiting on the publication of the final draft of the National Synod Synthesis that will be sent on behalf of the Bishops of England and Wales. Reading other Diocesan synod reports and early drafts of the national synod report it is clear that there is synergy between what we have heard here in the North-East and the themes that have been heard all around the country. As a Diocese we are committed to growing as a synodal Church and we are working on the plans for the next phase. Watch this space for further information.

If you haven’t read our Diocesan synod report yet you can find it here.

Amy Cameron

Year of the Eucharist

This Diocesan Year aims to celebrate the Eucharist at the heart of the life and mission of the Church and to gather people back to the Mass and the Sacraments. The Diocesan vision for this time is that we grow in our love and appreciation of the Eucharist, that we deepen our appreciation of its celebration through the liturgy. We hope to revitalise and renew our faith through a deepening of prayer and Eucharistic devotion inspiring us to go out and to serve the world through the nourishment we receive.

Visit our website for more information about the Year of the Eucharist.

Time before the Blessed Sacrament is a series of reflections on the ways in which we can participate in Adoration. Each leaflet includes scripture, image, prayer and reflection and they are intended for a range of uses; for individuals during a time of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, for group reflection or as the basis of a holy hour. The reflections are available on the Year of the Eucharist page.

Mass of Thanksgiving for NHS Staff, Hospital Chaplains and Care Workers

Are you a Doctor, Nurse or other type of healthcare worker working in the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle? Bishop Robert Byrne invites you to attend a Mass of Thanksgiving for NHS Staff, Chaplains and Care Workers at 7.00pm on 14 July, the Feast of St Camillus, at St Mary’s, Newcastle. This Mass will be an opportunity for the Diocese to express their gratitude to all healthcare staff and chaplains as we continue to emerge from the COVID Pandemic.

Year of the Eucharist Reflections

The third Year of the Eucharist reflection bookletEncountering the Holy Spirit’ is available to download and read. The booklet contains reflections written by voices from across the Diocese and invite us to reflect on our relationship with the Holy Spirit. The first two booklets in the series ‘Encountering the Father’ and ‘Encountering the Son’ are still available online.

Bishop Robert’s Reflections are available on the Year of the Eucharist page.

The Association of the Eucharist invites you to join them for a Day of Recollection on Saturday 2 July 2022, 11.00am to 3.00pm. The day begins with Mass, followed by a talk and ending with Holy Hour. Please bring a packed lunch. Refreshments will be served.

Certificate for Pastoral Ministry

Certificate in Pastoral Ministry – starting in September 2022

  • Are you currently involved in Church ministry but wish you knew more about your faith?
  • Do you sometimes lack confidence and feel you could benefit from further training and formation?
  • Do you want to grow in your faith and ministry and perhaps find new ways to share your gifts with others?

If you answer ‘yes’ to these questions, then we have a course designed just for you.

The Certificate in Pastoral Ministry is an online, two-year learning experience created with the busy person in mind. It will take you on a journey of discovery about key aspects of the Catholic faith while helping you to reflect upon your own ministry and the ministry of others.

For further information please email adminfaith.mission@diocesehn.org.uk. More information about the Certificate in Pastoral Ministry can also be found the Diocesan website.

The closing date for applications is Thursday 21 July 2022.

Marriage & Family Life

World Meeting of Families 2022

The theme for the tenth World Meeting of Families (WMOF) is Family Love: a vocation and a path to Holiness. The World Meeting of Families was instituted by Pope St John Paul II in 1994. The week 22 – 26 June was organised and promoted by the Vatican Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life. Although physically hosted by the Diocese of Rome, in 2022 the event was multi-centred and spread out throughout the world’s Catholic dioceses. Watch the Pope’s video message or visit the WMOF22 website.

Visit our website for prayer and resources about Family & Sacraments or visit the Diocesan social media channels on Facebook or Twitter.

World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly 2022

In old age they will still bear fruit.” (Psalm 92:15)

These words of the Psalmist are glad tidings, a true “gospel” that we can proclaim to all on this second World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly. They run counter to what the world thinks about this stage of life, but also to the attitude of grim resignation shown by some of us elderly people, who harbour few expectations for the future.

The second World day for grandparents and the elderly is on Sunday 24 July 2022.

Please visit our Family & Sacraments section for further information.

Liturgical Formation / Days of Reflection

The Liturgy team are planning more Liturgy courses for formation and Days of Reflection for the Autumn, including:

  • Courses for new Readers, Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion.
  • A study day for leaders of Children’s Liturgy of the Word.
  • Days of Reflection for Readers and Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion.
  • Refresher evenings for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion.

Liturgy Courses / Days confirmed:

Tuesday 13 September 2022 – Formation for new Readers (Day 2 on 17 September).
Saturday 24 September 2022 – Day of Reflection for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion (an alternative date will be offered in October).
Wednesday 28 September 2022 – Refresher evening for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion (this day will take place in the north of the Diocese with an alternative date
in the south of the Diocese to be offered in October).

Further information about each of the courses/events, along with booking information, is available on Liturgy and Prayer webpage.

CHARIS (Catholic Charismatic Renewal International Service)

Celebrating the Gifts of the Holy Spirit: A Mass for Pentecost at St Mary’s Cathedral Newcastle on 28 May 2022, served as a culmination of the work of the CDSC since we came together over a year ago. The music provided by the Emmanuel music group and the African singers and musicians was inspirational and uplifting. Intercessory prayers in different languages witnessed to the diversity of our Diocese, as did the presence of seven priests, with Fr O’Neill concelebrating with Fr Anthony, Fr Philip, Fr Abel, Fr Dodds, Fr Colahan and Fr Whalen. Many spoke of the Pentecostal blessing at the end of the Mass as being a time when they were especially touched by the Holy Spirit. Photos from the day can be seen on our gallery.

At this time of writing, we anticipate that our second newsletter will have been produced, shared with our mailing list and placed on the Diocesan website. If you would like to be added to our mailing list, please let us know by email: charis@diocesehn.org.uk.

Our next event is being planned for Saturday 22 October 2022 at St Augustine’s Church, Darlington. We are hoping that this will be the first of a series of events held in each of the five Vicariates, drawing on the communities in each particular Vicariate to provide a time of praise and worship, testimony and concluding with Mass.

Please visit the CHARIS section of the website for news and events.

John Wheeler
Charismatic Diocesan Service of Communion for the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle

Dialogue & Unity

Advance notice: As part of the Year of the Eucharist, we will also be holding a ‘Faith and Food’ event on Thursday 22 September, 7:00 – 9:00pm at English Martyrs Church Hall, Stamfordham Road. We look forward to sharing more details with you in due course.

Bereavement Support

Whilst bereavement is extremely hard at any time, the time spent in lockdown when funerals had to take place in very restricted circumstances have taken their toll on so many. Whilst family and friends can be immensely supportive, sometimes a bereaved person wants to talk to someone outside of their immediate circle. The Emmaus Bereavement Support Team, trained in the Ministry of Consolation, is available to support those who wish to talk about their loss. Due to current restrictions, such conversations will most likely take place on the phone, but we hope as restrictions ease, it may be possible for people to meet face-to-face again.

Since the launch of this service earlier this year, there have been a number of requests for support, and several of our listeners have been able to accompany others on their journey of loss and bereavement.

The Emmaus Bereavement Support Service number is 07732 980740 a member of the team will contact you promptly.


Father Sean Hall continues to offer his weekly reflections on the Sunday Readings and Pat Kennedy her monthly reflections, both available to read online or download in the Prayer Resources section.

A Compass for Renewal in the Church

The Emmanuel Catholic Charismatic Community invite you for a time of sharing and prayer on Saturday 5 November 2022 with the Right Reverend Bishop David Oakley, Bishop of Northampton. The event is taking place at St Mary’s Catholic School, Benton Park Road, Newcastle upon Tyne NE7 7PE. To book, please contact Pat Kennedy by email:  pat.kennedy42@icloud.com or tel: 0191 284 1690.

Contact Us

Contact the Vicariate of Faith & Mission by email: adminfaith.mission@diocesehn.org.uk or by telephone 0191 243 3316 / 07375 934713 during office hours.

Visit our vicariate homepage here.