Diocese of

Hexham and Newcastle

Bishop Séamus Cunningham

Religious in our Diocese

Sisters of Mercy, Seaham Harbour

contact details

Address and Telephone:

Mercy Centre for Prayer and Mission, 1 Antrim Gardens, Dene House Road
Tel: (0191) 581 3249

foundation and history


The Sisters of Mercy came to Sunderland from Cork, Ireland in October 1843 at the request of Canon Kearney who was then Parish Priest of St Mary’s Parish Sunderland, and the “walking nuns” as they were soon to become called became the first Religious presence in the town since the time of Bede and Benet.

From the outset there was a steady stream of girls wishing to dedicate their lives to God as Sisters of Mercy, and in no time at all the community of Sisters of Mercy grew and flourished in Sunderland.  In due course the Sisters were invited to open branch houses in other parts of the Diocese. 

To this day the Sunderland Sisters of mercy can be found working in Sunderland, Gosforth, Hexham, Seaham and Wolsingham.

Work of the Order in this diocese

Centre for Prayer and Mission
Sister Michael at the Mercy Centre for Prayer and Mission in Sunderland

The Centre for Prayer and Mission at Seaham is a spiritual resource for the Diocese—for individuals, groups or parishes.

The Centre offers:

  • Days of Recollection
  • A venue for Meetings
  • Training and Support for Evangelising Groups
  • Prayer Opportunities

There are two comfortable Conference Rooms for 25 and 30 people, a dining room and a Chapel. An added attraction is the sea—only 5 minutes away.

Sister Michael is an experienced teacher. For the past five years she has worked in many parishes in the diocese, particularly in the area of Parish Development, Prayer and Evangelisation. She has an M.A. in Pastoral Studies and is an honorary member of the Sion Community, involved in Parish Missions.
e-mail: srmichael@hotmail.co.uk

All Religious Houses in Diocese