Diocese of

Hexham and Newcastle

Bishop Robert Byrne CO

Vocations: Seminarians Training for the Priesthood


Current Seminarians in our Diocese:

The Diocese is giving each of our current seminarians an opportunity to share with you a personal summary of their journey to priesthood and this information will be updated periodically.

Jonathon Bowes

My name is Jonathon Bowes and I'm a seminarian for the Diocese in my fifth year of formation. During the past year I have completed a time of extended placement within the Diocese in Hartlepool. This was a grace filled time with many blessings. It gave me the possibility to reflect more on what it means to be a priest within our Diocese, but also what that will mean for future ministry within a Church that is in need of renewal. At the end of the academic year I receive Candidacy which is the formal recognition by the Church that God is calling me to be ordained to the Diaconate and Priesthood.

Jonathon Bowes - Ordination to the Diaconate

On Saturday 29 June 2019, I was ordained to the Diaconate for the Diocese at at St. Mary's College, Oscott, the feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Jonathon Bowes was ordained deacon for the Diocese. The Mass was celebrated by Archbishop Bernard Longley and attended by Fr. Chris Warren (Vocational Director), Fr. Jim Angus, Fr. Michael Griffiths and Fr. Nick Jennings (priests of Holy Family Parish, Hartlepool).

Please God, this will be followed by myordination to the Priesthood in 2020 in Newcastle. I ask for your continued prayers for myself and for Luke and Joe, as we prepare to serve the Diocese as priests.

"O Mary, teach us always to say 'Yes' to the Lord, every moment of our life"

Last update July 2019.

Luke Wilkinson

My name is Luke Wilkinson and I'm a seminarian for the Diocese in my fourth year. I’m currently on my extended pastoral placement serving the people of English Martyrs, Ss. Peter and Paul’s, Stockton; St. Bede’s, Stockton and St. Joseph’s, Norton. Prior to offering myself to the Church I trained as a secondary school religious education teacher and after having been accepted by the Diocese I spent a year in Valladolid, Spain at St. Alban's Royal English College. This year in Spain was comprised of prayer, study and most of all discernment. My years at Oscott have been happy and I’m very glad for the opportunity to spend an extended period in a parish which the Oscott system affords. I was born in Gateshead and converted to Catholicism when I was in my early teens. It is my ardent desire to serve the people of Hexham and Newcastle; to grow with them in love and service of the Lord.

Last update - October 2018.

Joseph O'Brien

My name is Joseph O'Brien. I am 20 and I hail from Whitley Bay. I have just started my studies at the Venerable English College, England and Wales' seminary in Rome. In 2016 I completed my A-Levels at St. Thomas More Academy in North Shields and decided to take some time to discern my potential vocation to the Priesthood. I spent ten months in India working in an orphanage with the Salesians of Don Bosco, returning in February this year. I am thankful to God for all of the opportunities He has given me and I am ever grateful to the people of the Diocese; it is only through their help, support and prayers that I am able to be embarking on this wonderful journey with God. Please keep me in your prayers as I begin my studies and training.

Last update October 2018.