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Diocese of

Hexham and Newcastle

Bishop Robert Byrne CO

Bishop Robert introduces the Synod & Year of the Eucharist

Watch Bishop Robert as he introduces the Synod & Year of the Eucharist in the Diocese in this video:.

Keeping Christ at the heart of the post-pandemic Catholic Church

Bishops’ Conference have released a video by Bishop Robert as we are about to embark on a ‘Year of the Eucharist’. It's an opportunity, he says, to re–connect with the Sacramental Church – Christ in the Eucharist at the source and summit of our Catholic faith.

“We're having a year of the Eucharist, linked with the synodal process that the Holy Father has asked us to engage with. It's an opportunity for all of us to reflect on how we listen to the Lord in the power of the Holy Spirit.”

“We need to consider how we emerge from the pandemic. What kind of Church do we want to be? A listening Church? An active Church? A Church that's ready to go to the margins? A Church that is always focused on Christ and can only be fed on Christ? It's only Christ that adequately feeds us, and we only really get to know Him through the Eucharist.”

Watch the full video here.

Pope Francis and the Synod office in Rome are inviting the whole Church to become Synodal.

We are invited to journey together, listening to the promptings of the Holy Spirit in our lives and in the lives of the people we meet.

The whole ‘Synod’ will be a two-year process beginning in every diocese in October 2021 and moving on to a national then international listening exercise.

Click here to read more about the Synod.

Diocesan Year of the Eucharist

Throughout the year we have the following aims:

Our Hopes

In this 'Year of the Eucharist' we hope to:

Revitalise and renew our faith through a deepening prayer and devotion of the Eucharist.

Grow as a Diocese in our love and appreciation of the Eucharist.

Deepen our appreciation of the liturgical celebration of the Eucharist through the rites.

Celebrate Eucharist as being at the heart of the life and mission of the Church, gathering people back.

Go out to love and serve the world nourished by the Eucharist.

Various events, invitations, publications and resources will be available this coming year. To receive these directly to your inbox sign up to the mailing list by email and keep an eye on the Diocesan website for the adverts as the year unfolds.

Black History Month

Black History Month started in England on 1 October 1987 to challenge racism and ignorance and acknowledge the history of peoples from Africa, the Caribbean and South Asia. It has grown in popularity despite two concerns: that the focus on black history should be year long and not limited to one month and that this can separate black history from being embedded in British history. It also soon slipped into being the history of people from the African diaspora only as in the USA model.

Despite these concerns Black History Month can provide opportunities to learn about the history of African descended peoples and challenge the view that African descended peoples are new arrivals who have not contributed to British society.

One such opportunity is the publication of ‘African Lives in Northern England’, which has been supported by the Catholic Association for Racial Justice. The 54 people featured include a Roman emperor, the first professional black footballer, first black woman magistrate, notable orators against enslavement and racism as well as more ordinary lives as soldiers, sailors, servants, engineers, physicians and community builders.

Read more here.

Tyne & Wear Citizens short–listed for North East Charity Award

Tyne & Wear Citizens have been shortlisted for a North East Charity Award, in the new category ‘Outstanding Contribution to Social Change’. Sponsored by the Millfield House Foundation.

They are shortlisted alongside Children North East & Thrive Teesside. The winner will be announced at an award ceremony on Wednesday 20 October, which the Leadership Group Team will attend.

You can read the announcement in the Chronicle here.

The Diocese of Hexham & Newcastle are one of Tyne & Wear Citizens strategic partners.

Protecting the Health of Our Clergy and Congregations. (Updated guidance September 2021)

As part of a review in September 2021, Bishop Robert Byrne CO, in consultation with the Episcopal Council, has taken both Clergy and Lay advice with regards to our Diocesan COVID Control Measures.

Please click here to read the statement in full.

Additional Resources:

Please click here to view a statement from the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales.

Please click here to view a list of churches that are live streaming their weekend services.

Please click here for a Prayer Resources for those visiting our churches or those that remain at home.

Afghan Resettlement

As you will be aware the UK Government has announced a resettlement program for Afghans. It will be up to Local Authorities to accept and co-ordinate this and they may well need help and support from community groups.

Fr. Adrian Tuckwell, Episcopal Vicar for Caritas, is trying to attain some clarity on what help may be required, but is aware that this may differ across the Diocese and that a local approach is necessary. Fr. Adrian will make known any requests for help that he becomes aware of, but please do look out for local appeals in your area.

Please do also remember that already in our region we have a large number of people seeking asylum and refugees, many of whom are destitute. If you are in a position to help those in the Newcastle area please click here and in Stockton there is RASPS (Refugee and Asylum Seekers Project, Stockton), address and contact details here.

CAFOD responding to multiple emergencies across the world

CAFOD is responding to significant crises across the world this week. We are working with local Church organisations in Haiti to deliver emergency aid to people affected by the catastrophic earthquake and tropical storm. In the tragic situation in Afghanistan, we are working to ensure the safety of our local partners and their communities. We are supporting local aid workers to deliver urgent food and water supplies to hundreds of thousands of people facing extreme hunger in Tigray in Ethiopia, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria. You can read more about how we can all express solidarity with our sisters and brothers affected by these emergencies on the CAFOD website. Your compassion, generosity and prayers have helped us to stand together and enable us to continue to support communities in these difficult times. Thank you.

Global Healing 2021

Global Healing is an initiative that highlights our need to care for our common home, the earth. It supports Laudato Si' the encyclical written by Pope Francis on how our faith calls us to urgent action to care for the earth.

A Global Healing course was organised by Laudato Si’ Animators in the UK to run during Lent in 2021. It was very well attended by over 900 individuals with the following feedback gathered (read here). Additionally, a useful Toolkit has also been created bringing together handouts and resources from the course that can be used (access here).

You can read more about Laudato Si' and Global Healing here.

A community inspired by the vision of Pope Francis in Fratelli tutti during the pandemic

A blog by Fr. Chris Hughes has been published in The Tablet reflecting on Pope Francis vision, ‘Fratelli Tutti’ and the ongoing relationship between Tyne & Wear Citizens and the Diocese of Hexham & Newcastle.

To read the article in full click here.

COVID–19 (Coronavirus) Pandemic – Church Response

‘Where the Hell is God?’

In these trying times, many people are led to ask the big questions of life. Where is God in the midst of Covid-19? Seeking God, questioning God are very natural responses to times of trial and grief and they are not new questions to the Catholic Church. In this Irish Jesuit's podcast, Fr. Richard Leonard shares his journey in asking ‘Where the Hell is God’ in the face of tragedy and he provides some solid advice on how to support others facing distress.

Watch this introduction by Fr. Sean Hall:

Do you need to speak to someone for support?

For those who are seeking a Priest with whom they can speak at this time, could you please contact the Parish Priest at your local Church. You can find your local Church telephone number by visiting our Church directory and selecting the link for your church. This link will display the Church contact details.

Dedicated counsellors and listeners are also available at the Cathedral Listening Service on 0191 232 6953 and on the Northumberland Listening Service on 07732 980740.

Vicariate for Faith & Mission:

Marriage & Family Life:

Pope Francis has announced that on 19 March 2021 the Church will celebrate five years of his Apostolic Exhortation “Amoris Laetitia”, on the beauty and joy of love in the family. On the same day he will launch the Year “Amoris Laetitia Family” which will conclude on 26 June 2022, on the occasion of the X World Meeting of Families in Rome with the Holy Father (22 - 26 June 2022).

Pope Francis has decided to institute throughout the Church the celebration of World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly, which will be held beginning this year on the fourth Sunday in July (25 July 2021), near the liturgical memory of Saints Joachim and Anne, grandparents of Jesus (26 July 2021).


A request from the Diocesan Church Music Association:

A call–out to all those who help in any way with liturgical music in their parish.

As the Coronavirus restrictions continue, particularly here in the North–East, the DCMA would love to know how parish musicians have been coping. Are you perhaps recording at home? Or maybe you are lucky enough to be back in church, and if so, what are you able to provide to enhance the Liturgy at this difficult time when there is still no congregational singing?

Please email us your comments.

We hope that this may lead to a potential Zoom meeting where we can share our ideas and support each other through this strangest of times.


Fr. Adrian Dixon's Reflection for Extraordinary Ministers:

Fr. Adrian Dixon has produced a short reflection for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion ahead of Corpus Christi; the usual time when ministers renew their commitment.


Fr. Sean Hall's Reflections on the Readings for week 30 of Ordinary Time can be read here.

Pat Kennedy MPS has shared a Reflection (Soup and the Stone), which you can read here.


Healthy Couple Relationships and support when they are not

All relationships have their ups and downs and sometimes a positive solution is hard to find. In these extraordinary days in which we experience lives of enforced isolation such difficulties may become enhanced and overriding. MarriageCare, a charity with which this Diocese collaborates on preparing engaged couples for marriage, provides a counselling service for couples or individuals experiencing difficulties in their relationship which one or both find challenging and problematic. You can access support through the MarriageCare website in the ‘How we help’ section, ‘Relationship counselling’. Full contact details are provided for further enquiries and venues, and include FAQ’s.

Domestic Abuse, Family Support and Support for Children in Domestic Abuse

MarriageCare also provides many useful links under the ‘How we help’ section; Relationship support organisations; Debt and Finance; Family support organisations; Domestic abuse – here there are many links under the ‘domestic violence help resources’ including support for women, men and children.


Life After the Pandemic - Pope Francis

The Vatican Publishing House has released a free eBook, “Life After the Pandemic”, a collection of interventions by Pope Francis, with a preface by Cardinal Michael Czerny, to reflect on the vision of the world that is emerging after the pandemic and to which we are called to accompany. It is now available to read or download.


Strong in the Face of Tribulation, The Church in Communion: A Sure Support in Time of Trial

The Dicastery for Communication of the Holy See have produced a book intended to be a little help offered to all, so as to know how to discern and experience God’s closeness and tenderness in pain, in suffering, in solitude and in fear. Of course, faith does not eliminate pain; ecclesial communion does not eliminate anguish. Rather, it does illuminate reality and reveal that it is pervaded by the love and hope based not on our abilities, but on the One Who is faithful and never abandons us.

It is divided into three sections; prayers, rituals and supplications for difficult moments.

It is available now to read or download.

Mgr. Andrew Faley, Vicariate for Faith & Mission (email: evfaithandmission@diocesehn.org.uk).


Pope Francis – Prayer to Mary for Protection during the COVID–19 Pandemic.

O Mary, you shine continuously on our journey as a sign of salvation and hope.
We entrust ourselves to you, Health of the Sick.
At the foot of the Cross you participated in Jesus’ pain,
with steadfast faith.
You, Salvation of the Roman People, know what we need.
We are certain that you will provide, so that,
as you did at Cana of Galilee,
joy and feasting might return after this moment of trial.
Help us, Mother of Divine Love,
to conform ourselves to the Father’s will
and to do what Jesus tells us:
He who took our sufferings upon Himself, and bore our sorrows to bring us,
through the Cross, to the joy of the Resurrection. Amen.
We seek refuge under your protection, O Holy Mother of God.
Do not despise our pleas – we who are put to the test –
and deliver us from every danger,
O glorious and blessed Virgin.

Young Adult Prayer Group

Young Adults (including uni students) from across the area are invited for a time of Adoration before the Blessed Sacrament with some music and reflection. Held every Monday in term time from 7.00pm to 8.00pm at St. Andrew's Church, Worswick Street, Newcastle followed by social time in a local pub. Drop in for a few minutes even if you cannot stay for the whole hour!

Diocesan Bereavement Support

The Bereavement Support team has created resources to support you and your loved ones during times of bereavement and loss. We offer these prayers in solidarity, and we want you to know that the Church community is praying with you, and you are not alone.

Visit our new Bereavement page.

Safeguarding: Delivering Change and Building Trust

For the latest news on the implementation of recommendations from the IICSA and Ian Elliott Review please click here.

The Vicariate for Caritas and The Road Centre

Caritas, in partnership with The Road Centre, is offering a number of resources to help adults, young people, and children cope with stress and anxiety during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Resource for adults (pdf).
Resource for young people (pdf).
Resource for children (pdf).

Vicariate for Faith & Mission

The Vicariate for Faith & Mission are able to provide copies of our lockdown prayer resources to those without internet access. Please contact the Vicariate by ringing 07375 934713 or click on the poster for alternative contact details. Please pass this information onto those without internet access.

Mass by Phone Service

During these times when our churches are closed and masses are being streamed online, the Diocese of Middlesbrough have set up a system to allow people who do not have internet access to listen to Mass over the telephone.

If you would like to access, the telephone number to call is 01642 130120.

If you know anyone who may benefit from this service, you can download and print a poster with details.

Live Streaming of Masses

A number of parishes have set up a live stream of their Masses.

For more details of frequency and timings please click here.

Government Coronavirus Guidelines

Where do I get more information? Here are some helpful links:

NHS website

Government website

Stay Home | Protect the NHS | Save Lives


Coronavirus (COVID–19) Guidelines

The Bishops' Conference of England and Wales have issued some guidelines to enable Catholic churches and organisations to find the relevant information in one place. Visit their website for the latest guidance and advice.

The Liturgy Office of the Bishops' Conference has compiled a prayer resource for people affected by the Covid–19 virus. Read it here.

Coronavirus (COVID–19)

For further information and how we are responding to the Coronavirus pandemic please click here.

Click here to find out more about The God Who Speaks – The Year of the Word.

Diocesan Events:

See also full screen calendar


Diocesan Vision

Read the new Diocesan Vision.


Pastoral Letter

Year of the Eucharist / Synod Pastoral Letter – 28th Sunday of Ordinary Time


Diocesan E-Newsletter

Read latest newsletter and subscribe


Noticeboard

Posters for events in the Diocese.

Local events.

Posters for non-Diocesan events.


Northern Cross

The October edition of Northern Cross is out. Read Page 1.



Last updated on 22/10/21

Patrons of the Diocese: St Cuthbert, Bishop and Confessor and Our Blessed Lady Immaculate