Parish newsletter

3rd Sunday of the Year

Dear Parishioners

The rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine has been part of the headline news this week and a topic of conversation in our own community where I know some of you have “had your jab!”

The Bishops of England and Wales are encouraging Catholics to get vaccinated against the Coronavirus.

The development of a vaccine against Covid-19 presents an important breakthrough in protecting others as well as oneself from the virus; a virus which has not only caused a global pandemic and led to a huge loss of life but has also placed a great burden on healthcare workers and systems.

Speaking on behalf of the Bishops of England and Wales, Bishop Richard Moth, pointed out that each person has a duty to protect others from infection with its danger of serious illness, and for some, death. He noted that a vaccine is the most effective way to achieve this unless one decides to self-isolate and therefore Catholics may in good conscience receive any of the three vaccines for the good of others and themselves.

At the same time, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith recalls that “vaccination is not, as a rule, a moral obligation and that, therefore, it must be voluntary.” The morality of vaccination, it notes, depends both on the duty to protect one’s own health and the pursuit of the common good. “In the absence of other means to stop or even prevent the epidemic, the common good may recommend vaccination, especially to protect the weakest and most exposed.” Those who for reasons of conscience reject vaccines must “do their utmost to avoid, by other prophylactic means and appropriate behaviour, becoming vehicles for the transmission of the infectious agent.”

In the light of the Bishops’ statement, I hope you will all feel able to accept the invitation to receive the vaccine when it is offered to you.

Please continue to look after each other and pray that the Lord will watch over us and keep us safe from harm.

May God bless you all

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 am and on weekdays at 12.05 pm. These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 am on Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays.


Mass Intentions for the coming week

In keeping with the public health message that the movement and gathering of people should be minimised and that as many people as possible stay at home for the sake of health, life and the Common Good, St. Patrick’s Church will remain closed until the situation improves.

Fr. Patterson will continue to celebrate Mass privately each day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week.

  • Monday – Vin Blackwood
  • Tuesday – Bishop Hugh Lindsay
  • Wednesday – Peter Sloan
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – Denis Patrick Lenehan
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners

As you are unable to celebrate Mass with him in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Paul McCourt and Fr. Kevin Daly who are currently unwell
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Bishop Hugh Lindsay, Vin Blackwood and Denis Patrick Lenehan and,
  • Patricia Britton who has died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the soul of your servant whom you have called from this life. May she be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united.

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Sunday of the Word of God

Pope Francis is encouraging us to devote this Sunday, 24th January to the Word of God, so that we can ‘experience anew how the risen Lord opens up for us the treasury of his word and enables us to proclaim its unfathomable riches before the world’ (from Pope Francis’ Apostolic Letter Aperuit Illis).

Fr Sean Hall has posted two talks on St Mark’s Gospel (about 12 minutes each) on the diocesan website. As we begin the Year of Mark, these resources may  assist you to read the Sunday Gospel with greater insight.  If you have the facility, you may view the talks on the YouTube channel here: Talk one and Talk two.


Holocaust Memorial Day

Be the Light in the Darkness” is a film of remembrance, which will be available from 8.00 on Monday, 25th January to mark Holocaust Memorial Day. The theme, ‘Be the light in the darkness,’ encourages everyone to reflect on the depths humanity can sink to, but also the ways individuals and communities resisted that darkness to ‘be the light’ before, during and after genocide.

This year, the Interreligious Department of the Diocese is releasing a film of remembrance as a resource for schools, and local parish communities. Bishop Robert offers further thought and reflection in remembering with sorrow the victims of the Holocaust, before lighting a candle as we remember the genocides and atrocities that have taking place in recent memory. We can all stand in solidarity. We can choose to be the light in the darkness in a variety of ways and places – at home, in public, and online. If you have the facility, you may wish to view this film of remembrance at Be the Light in the Darkness.


Parish News by Email

If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to email Fr. Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk and they will be added to our contact list.


Thank you

Fr. Patterson is very grateful for a Gift Aided donation of  £40.00 recently received for St. Patrick’s parish funds.


Your ongoing financial support is welcomed and needed

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your offerings during these difficult times. He is particularly grateful to those parishioners who regularly contribute to parish funds by bank transfer which helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

Whilst we are being urged to “Stay at Home,” it may not be wise to drop your envelopes through the presbytery letterbox, unless your daily exercise route happens to take you past the presbytery. Please be sensible. For security reason, envelopes should not be put through the letterbox of St. Alban’s Presbytery.

The parish is still able to reclaim the tax from Gift Aided offertory contributions made by bank transfer. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Parish newsletter

Dear Parishioner

I suspect many of us may have been struggling this week with the prospect of the Lockdown having to be in place for quite some time, a fact confirmed by the Prime Minister at the Downing Street Briefing on Friday evening.

Staying at Home is the underlying message which we must try to observe, not only for our own well-being but for that of the community and, of course, for the sake of the staff of our local hospitals.

For those of us living on our own, and I include myself in this, I know how difficult it can be at times. However when we hear of the ever growing number of new cases of the virus, along with the increasing number of people dying in our region and throughout the country – the sense of isolation and loneliness we may sometimes feel, fades into the background.

Last Friday, 15th January, 55,761 people tested positive in our country, 108 of those were in Gateshead. In the last 7 days to 10th January, there were 116 people who tested positive living within the boundary of our shared parish.

Throughout the UK, 1,280 people were reported as having died of Covid on 15th January, with 10 people dying in the last seven days in Gateshead. There are 37,282 Covid patients in our hospitals, 74 in the Gateshead NHS Trust.

The Prime Minister also spoke of the importance of Washing our hands regularly as the virus “can be passed on, not just by standing too near someone in a supermarket queue, but also by handling something touched by an infected person.”

On a more positive note he also spoke of the progress of the vaccination programme, encouraging us, “when the call comes, to get a jab but, in the meantime, Stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.”

So we must continue to remain vigilant and do what we can to help to reduce the number of cases and deaths in our community.

Please continue to look after each other and pray that the Lord will watch over us and keep us safe from harm

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30am and on weekdays at 12.05pm. These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00. Mass may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions for the coming week

In keeping with the public health message that the movement and gathering of people should be minimised and that as many people as possible stay at home for the sake of health, life and the Common Good, St. Patrick’s Church will remain closed until the situation improves.

Fr. Patterson will continue to celebrate Mass privately each day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week.

  • Monday – Annie and John Donald
  • Tuesday -Margaret and Brian Pankhurst
  • Wednesday – LDM Makepeace and Shanks Families
  • Thursday -The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday -Patsy Rafferty
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners

As you are unable to celebrate Mass with him in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.


Please keep in your prayers this week

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Annie Donald and Patsy Rafferty and,
  • Frank McCarron who has died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the soul of your servant whom you have called from this life. May he be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united.”

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Your ongoing financial support is welcomed and needed

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your offerings during these difficult times. He is particularly grateful to those parishioners who regularly contribute to parish funds by bank transfer which helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

Whilst we are being urged to “Stay at Home,” it may not be wise to drop your envelopes through the presbytery letterbox, unless your daily exercise route happens to take you past the presbytery. Please be sensible. For security reason, envelopes should not be put through the letterbox of St. Alban’s Presbytery.

The parish is still able to reclaim the tax from Gift Aided offertory contributions made by bank transfer. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


The Year of St. Joseph

Pope Francis has proclaimed a special “Year of St Joseph.” It began on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception 2020 and extends to the same Feast this year.  The Pope shares with us these, his thoughts:-

Saint Joseph, expressed his fatherhood by placing himself at the service of the Messiah who was growing to maturity in his home. In St. Joseph, “Jesus saw the tender love of God,” the love that helps us accept our weakness, because “it is through” and despite “our fears, our frailties, and our weakness” that God’s will for us is realised.

Joseph is also a father in obedience to God: with his ‘fiat’ he protects Mary and Jesus and teaches his Son to “do the will of the Father.” Called by God to serve the mission of Jesus, he “cooperated… in the great mystery of Redemption.”

Joseph is a father who teaches the value, dignity and joy of work. “A carpenter who earned an honest living to provide for his family.” This aspect of Joseph’s character enables Pope Francis to encourage everyone “to rediscover the value, the importance and the necessity of work for bringing about a new ‘normal’ from which no one is excluded.” Especially in light of rising unemployment due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Pope calls everyone to “review our priorities” and to express our firm conviction that no young person, no person at all, no family should be without work!”

“Fathers are not born, but made,” says Pope Francis. “A man does not become a father simply by bringing a child into the world, but by taking up the responsibility to care for that child.” Unfortunately, in today’s society, children “often seem orphans, lacking fathers” who are able to introduce them “to life and reality.” Children, the Pope says, need fathers who will not try to dominate them, but instead raise them to be “capable of deciding for themselves, enjoying freedom and exploring new possibilities.”

Joseph, says Pope Francis, “knew how to love with extraordinary freedom.  He never made himself the centre of things.  He did not think of himself, but focused instead on the lives of Mary and Jesus.” Joseph stands out, therefore, as an exemplary figure for our time.

Pope Francis offers us the following prayer to St. Joseph:

Hail, Guardian of the Redeemer,
spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
To you God entrusted his only Son;
in you Mary placed her trust;
with you Christ became man.
Blessed Joseph, to us too, show yourself a father
and guide us in the path of life.
Obtain for us grace, mercy, and courage,
and defend us from every evil.  Amen


Parish newsletter

The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

Dear Parishioner

I suspect few of us were surprised at the Government’s decision earlier this week to impose a National Lockdown on our country in the light of the rapid growth in the transmission of the coronavirus, the increasing number of people dying and the threat the spread of the virus poses, not only to ourselves, but to our National Health Service.

The message is very clear. The single most important action we can all take is to Stay at Home, to protect the NHS and to help to save lives.

One of the anomalies in the Government Guidance is that Places of Worship may remain open for communal worship.

Since St. Patrick’s Church reopened in September 2020, we have taken all the appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities, the Bishops’ Conference and the Diocese to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe.

However we should be aware that when we enter any public space we assume the risk of contracting Covid-19. Our Church is no exception despite the precautions we have put in place which cannot totally eliminate the risk of infection. As the new variant of the coronavirus is more easily transmissible, this risk of infection is heightened which is why we are all being asked to “Stay at Home” and limit our contact with members of other households.

As the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 continues to rise in our neighbourhood, there have been 995 confirmed cases in Gateshead since 1st January, I have consulted with some parishioners, some of our volunteer stewards, fellow priests and I have spoken to Bishop Robert and I feel it would be prudent, until the national restrictions ease, to suspend the celebration of Mass in St. Patrick’s Church with the exception of Funerals. Some of you may be aware that the churches in Washington, and the churches in Penshaw and Birtley have already closed as have some in Sunderland.

I have also taken into consideration the following statement issued by the Bishops of Northern Ireland:

“…we are very concerned at the current serious public health position in which Northern Ireland finds itself: with the extremely high level of transmission of the Covid-19 virus; the continuing escalation of numbers in hospital and intensive care; the number of associated deaths; and, the increasingly unsustainable pressure on our healthcare staff. The clear message from health officials is that this situation is going to worsen significantly over the coming weeks.

We recognise the efforts of so many in our parishes who have been working to ensure that our gatherings for public worship are as safe as possible….. At this time, however, we acknowledge and support the unequivocal message from public health authorities that the movement and gathering of people should be minimised and that as many people as possible stay at home for the sake of health, life and the Common Good.

In light of…. the current serious and worsening situation, and in line with clear public health guidance that people should stay at home, we have decided that for a limited period….. the celebration of Mass and other liturgies should take place without the physical presence of the faithful.

We make this decision reluctantly, conscious that not being able to gather for public worship can cause pain for all the faithful, but in the hope that this limited period of sacrifice will be for the protection of life and health and for the greater good of all.”

It has not been an easy decision for me to make, but I do this with your spiritual and physical well-being in mind and that of our local community. I also have to consider the well-being of our volunteer stewards and their families. A team of five must be present for any service held in the Church to ensure your safety and to sanitise the Church afterwards and I am anxious about having to place them in a potentially vulnerable environment.

As the situation in our own country is similar, if not worse, than the situation in Northern Ireland, St. Patrick’s Church will be closed from 12 noon on Monday, 11th January, for all acts of communal worship with the exception of funerals until the situation eases. I will monitor the situation on a regular basis and keep you informed via the Newsletter.

In the meantime I urge all of you to:

Stay at home | Protect the NHS | Save lives

May the Lord continue to watch over us and protect us from harm.

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line over the Christmas period

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 am and on weekdays at 12.05 pm. These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 am. Mass may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions for the coming week

  • Monday – Emma Hindes (Private Funeral Mass by invitation only due to Covid-19 restrictions)
  • Tuesday – Brian Quigley
  • Wednesday – Vincent McCormack
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – Kathleen and Bill Harland
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners

As you are unable to celebrate Mass with me in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
  • Fr. David Milburn, one of our retired priests, Ralph Curry and Emma Hindes who have died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the souls of your servants whom you have called from this life. May they be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united.

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Your financial support

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your offerings during the Christmas season and continues to be grateful to those parishioners who regularly contribute to parish funds either by bank transfer, bringing their offerings to Mass or by dropping  their envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Parish newsletter

The Second Sunday of Christmas

Dear Parishioners

With the promising news this week of the approval of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine, might I take this opportunity to wish you a New Year filled with hope!

At the same time we have been reminded by our Government that we must not drop our guard as the new variant of the coronavirus is spreading rapidly through the country putting a great strain on the NHS and resulting in more people dying.

As such, might I encourage you all to follow the Tier 4 Restrictions which were placed on our region last Thursday especially the 2 metre social distancing rule.

The basic message of these restrictions is “you must not leave or be outside of your home or garden except where you have a ‘reasonable excuse.’ These are listed on the Government’s website.

Attending communal worship is deemed to be a ‘reasonable excuse,’ to leave your home, but the Restrictions stress that “we must not mingle with anyone outside of our household or support bubble and should maintain strict social distancing at all times.”  Places of Worship may remain open for communal worship so long as they continue to follow the established guidelines they already have in place.

With the agreement of our stewards, Mass in St. Patrick’s Church will be celebrated on Tuesdays at 10.00 am and on Sundays at 10.30 am. You must reserve a place for Sunday Mass. Information on what you need to do is on page 2 of the Newsletter.

However, in the light of the Tier 4 Restrictions, I would urge you to give serious consideration as to whether or not you should be attending Church at this present time especially if you are in any of the vulnerable categories and you should not attend Church if you are deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable.

We are all becoming tired of yet more restrictions and the next few months will continue to challenge us. Whilst we hope the vaccine will gradually help to relieve the situation, we must remain ever watchful and not drop our guard – even those of you who have already received your first “jab.”

May God continue to bless us all and keep us safe now and throughout the coming year

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line over the Christmas period

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 am and on weekdays at 12.05. These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 am. Mass may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions for the coming week

  • Monday – Pat McDonough
  • Tuesday: 10.00 in Church – In Thanksgiving (MS)
  • Wednesday – Carol Belton
  • ThursdayThe sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday -Paul Hughes
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday: 10.30 in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – booking is necessary

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

In case you were not aware, a parish priest is obliged to celebrate Mass for the “Intentions of the Parishioners” every Sunday or Holyday, which prevents him from fulfilling personal intentions on those occasions.


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially

 A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Should I come to church?  Tier 4 update

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising under Tier 4 Restrictions that you should stay at home as much as possible, except to go outdoors for exercise or to attend health appointments as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 70 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to be especially careful to follow the rules and minimise their contact with others.

If you fall into either of these categories, you need to consider the wisdom of attending Mass.

Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church……..if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, change or a lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection.


Mass in St. Patrick’s Church during this coming week:

Thanks to the generosity of our volunteer stewards whose presence is necessary if we are able to open the St. Patrick’s Church for Mass we will be able to return to our pre-Christmas programme namely:

  • Tuesdays at 10.00 am- no booking is necessary
  • Sundays, at 10.30 am- for which booking is necessary

To reserve a place for Mass on Sunday, 10th January, please telephone:

07526 232124

on either Wednesday, 6th January between 10 am and 12 pm or on Friday, 8th January between 5.30 pm and 7 pm.

This number will be unavailable outside of these booking times.

Bookings can’t be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 4 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench.

For Masses where booking is not required please bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place them in the box in Church.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your Christmas Offerings.

He continues to be grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches. Thank you for your Christmas Offerings too.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Parish newsletter

The Feast of the Holy Family

Dear Parishioners

I do hope your celebration of Christmas brought you peace, joy and hope.

I would like to thank you for your cards and gifts but more especially for your understanding and support as we have journeyed together throughout this year with all the frustrations and uncertainties of the Coronavirus pandemic. I don’t think any of us are finding these current times easy!

A special word of thanks must go to those parishioners who volunteer to act as stewards and cleaners in  St. Patrick’s Church. They are essential if a church is to open for the celebration of Mass to take place. Their commitment and dedication is no mean achievement.

As the restrictions will go on well into 2021, if there are any of you who would like to join our team of volunteers, please email me on felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk. It is preferable that you are not in a vulnerable category. Anyone who is extremely clinically vulnerable is unable to act as a steward. Training will be given.

I am particularly grateful to those of you who have access to the internet for printing off copies of our parish Newsletters and passing them on to those who can’t receive them by email. It is a most valued method of keeping one another informed. Should you wish to receive the Newsletter by email, send your request to the email address above. Please remember that  the Newsletter is also published on our parish website and I wish to thank our “parish webmaster” for uploading it each week.

I am also grateful to those of you who ring from time to time to ensure that I am “still in one piece” and for your emails enquiring of my well-being. They mean a great deal to me and help to brighten up the occasional dark day.

The next few months will continue to challenge us and whilst we hope the vaccine will gradually help to relieve the situation, we must remain ever watchful and not drop our guard – even those of you who have already received your first “jab.”

May God continue to bless us all and keep us safe now and throughout the coming year.Happy New Year

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line over the Christmas period

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 and on weekdays at 12.05. These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00. Mass may also be viewed any time later on the Holy Name website.


Mass Intentions

  • Monday – Peter Sloan
  • Tuesday:  10.00 am in Church – Gerry Toberty
  • Wednesday – Tom and Kathleen McKenna
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • New Year’s Day10.00 am in Church – Allan Lavin
  • Saturday: Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday: 10.30 am in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – booking is necessary .

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

In case you were not aware, a parish priest is obliged to celebrate Mass for the “Intentions of the Parishioners” every Sunday or Holyday, which prevents him from fulfilling personal intentions on those occasions.


Please keep in your prayers this week

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Allan Lavin and Gerry Toberty.

 A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.

Fr. Patterson will offer Mass on Christmas morning for all those who are sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers and all who have died of Covid-19.


Should I come to church?

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 60 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection.


Mass in St. Patrick’s Church during this coming week:

  • Sunday, 27th December – booking is now closed
  • Tuesday, 29th December at 10.00 – no booking is necessary
  • Friday, 1st January at 10.00 – no booking is necessary
  • Sunday, 3rd January 2021  at 10.30 – booking is necessary

To reserve a place please telephone:

07526 232124

on either Wednesday, 30th December between  10.00 am – 12.00 pm or on Friday, 1st January between 5.30 pm – 7.00 pm.

This number will be unavailable outside of these booking times.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 3 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench.

For Masses where booking is not required please bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope with you and place them in the box in Church.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank you for your Christmas Offerings.

He continues to be grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches. Thank you for your Christmas Offerings too.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:-

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.


Parish newsletter


4th Sunday of Advent

Dear Parishioners

Although we are celebrating the Fourth Sunday of Advent this weekend, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a Christmas filled with peace, joy and hope.

I urge you to make considered decisions as to how you will celebrate the time with family and friends. Remember the coronavirus does not know it is Christmas and thrives in situations where we get close to others.

When planning your Christmas celebrations please consider Professor Chris Whitty’s advice given on Wednesday at a Downing Street Briefing: “Keep it small, keep it short, keep it local and think of the most vulnerable. The smaller the number of households that meet, the less transmission there will be. The shorter the period that people are together, the less risk there is of transmission. Keep it local because people travelling from high incidence areas to lower incidence areas have the risk of passing on the virus. Nobody has hidden that there is a risk at Christmas but if we do this, we can reduce the risk for everybody.”

These two images remind us of Christmas past when we were able to celebrate Mass together in both of our churches.

Nativity scenes from our parishes
Nativity scenes from our parishes

Sadly it is not possible to celebrate Mass in St. Alban’s Church at present as we are unable to make it Covid secure and Mass in St. Patrick’s Church will be very different due to the protocols we must have in place to keep you safe and well.

As a result of these restrictions we have had to ask you to reserve a place should you wish to come to Mass on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day as we are limited to 70 people at a Mass in our Church.

Mass on Christmas Eve is fully booked. So please do not come to Mass unless you have reserved a space as we will be unable to welcome you into our Church.

There are still a few places available for Mass on Christmas morning at 9.45 am. You may reserve a place by telephoning:

07526 232124 

on Monday, 21st December between 5.30 pm and 7:00pm.

Mass will be celebrated on Boxing Day at 10.00 am for which you do not have to book.

Should you wish to attend Mass on Sunday, 27th December at 10.30 am, you will need to reserve a place if you haven’t already done so, by telephoning

07526 232124

on Monday, 21st December between 5.30 pm and 7.00 pm

Thanks to the generosity of our stewards, as well as Mass at 10.00 am on Tuesday, 29th December, Mass will also be celebrated on New Year’s Day at 10.00 am. You do not need to book for these Masses. Seats will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

May God bless you and your friends and families at Christmas and in the year ahead and may he keep you safe in his care.

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line over the Christmas period

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on:

  • Sunday at 11.30 am
  • weekdays at 12.05 pm
  • Christmas Eve at 7.30 pm
  • Christmas Day at 11.30 am.

These Masses may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 am each day. Mass on Christmas Eve will be live streamed at 5.00 pm and on Christmas Morning at 10.00 am. Mass may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions

  • Monday – Margaret Freeman & LDM Foster & Freeman Families
  • Tuesday: 10.00 am in Church – Jim Murray & LDM Murray & McCabe Families
  • Wednesday – Ellen Farrell
  • Christmas Eve: 5.30 pm in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – fully booked
  • Christmas Day: 9.45 am in Church – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers and all who have died of Covid-19 – booking is necessary
  • Saturday: 10.00 am in Church – Nellie Armstrong
  • Sunday: 10.30 am in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – booking is necessary

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me in Church, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen.

In case you were not aware, a parish priest is obliged to celebrate Mass for the “Intentions of the Parishioners” every Sunday or Holyday, which prevents him from fulfilling personal intentions on those occasions.


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Nellie Armstrong, Ellen Farrell, Margaret Freeman, Pat McDonagh, Jim Murray and Gerry Toberty.

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.

Fr. Patterson will offer Mass on Christmas morning for all those who are sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers and all who have died of Covid-19.


Should I come to church?

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 60 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection.


The celebration of Mass during the coming week

We are all aware that Christmas is going to be very different this year, socially and spiritually. The Tier 3 Restrictions which we must follow, to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus, will impact on us all. What is important is that we continue to adhere to them for the sake of the common good – a message which lies at the heart of our Christian faith.

As our numbers are restricted to 70 people at each Mass, you will need to book a place to be able to attend Mass on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

The following Masses will be celebrated in St. Patrick’s Church during the coming week:

  • Sunday, 20th December at 10.30 am booking is now closed for this Mass
  • Tuesday, 22nd December at 10.00 am – no booking is required
  • Christmas Eve – fully booked – please do not come to Mass unless you have reserved a space as we will be unable to welcome you into our Church
  • Christmas Day at 9.45 am – there are a few places still available – you must reserve a place following the procedure outlined below
  • Boxing Day, the Feast of St. Stephen at 10.00 am – no booking is required. Places will be allocated on a first come first served basis
  • Sunday, 27th December at 10.30 am booking is required. Please follow the procedure below.

You may reserve a place for Christmas Morning and Sunday, 27th December by telephoning:

07526 232124 

on Monday, 21st December between  5.30 pm – 7.00pm.

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking time.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 3 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

The Church doors will open 20 minutes before Mass is due to begin. Please do not come any earlier but do allow yourself sufficient time to complete the necessary health and safety protocols. You may have to form a socially distanced queue outside. The attached document “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during Tier 3 Restrictions”  will help you.

Whilst we would always wish to welcome families back to Church, due to the Covid-19 Health and Safety requirements, we would suggest that children should only be brought to Mass if they are old enough to be able to adhere to the guidelines and can remain seated in their place at all times


Sincere Thanks

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank our volunteer stewards and cleaners whose presence is necessary for St. Patrick’s Church to be open for the celebration of Mass at any time including the Christmas period. Without their dedication and commitment we would not be able to open the Church for Mass as they ensure all the protocols for your safety and well-being are in place on every occasion. Thank you. Thanks also to our telephone booking operator who gives of her time to ensure we do not breach our limited seating capacity.


Northern Catholic Calendar

Copies of our Diocesan Year Book will be available to collect after Mass on Sunday at a cost of £3.00. Please bring the correct money in an envelope and place it in the box provided.


Message from Bishop Robert

As we approach Christmas, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your hard work for your parish and the diocese in this time of pandemic. To those who have helped to keep our churches open for Mass and those who have reached out to the less fortunate I want to say a big thank you. It is by our faith and unity that we can be a sign to the world of the love Christ showed us in becoming one of us in the holy season. I would like to wish you and your family a happy and peaceful Christmas and a blessed New Year.


Advent Alms 2020

Moira Ashman, the Chief Executive of St Cuthbert’s Care has sent the following note:

“This year, due to the very trying ongoing circumstances, St Cuthbert’s Care has been invited to deliver an online Advent Appeal via the Diocesan website. If you would like to support our charity’s work, the diocesan link can be accessed St Cuthberts Care   I am mindful of the financial pressures the pandemic has placed on many, so please, only support us if you feel able to do so. Thank you.”


On leaving the Church – Please be responsible and adhere to the law.

Under Tier 3 Restrictions, you must not mingle outside the Church after Mass. Parishioners are asked to disperse immediately on leaving the Church. Fr. Patterson urges those of you who come to Mass to follow this advice and in doing so set an example for others to follow and, of course, prevent the possible transmission of the coronavirus.


Parish News by Email

If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to contact Father Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk and they will be added to our contact list.

Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson continues to be so grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Donation

Fr. Patterson is very grateful for a Gift Aided Donation of £100.00 recently received for St. Patrick’s parish funds. 


Protect your loved ones

If you have downloaded the NHS App, it may be used to register your track and trace details when coming to Mass in St. Patrick’s Church. Simply scan the QR Code which is displayed in the Church and is specific to St. Patrick’s Church only. Please have your phone ready and the App open before entering the Church so that you do not create a “pinch point” by having to search for your phone in your pocket or bag.

Should you choose to “sign in” using the App, you should leave your phone switched on whilst you are in the Church, but please ensure it is in silent mode! You may of course continue to bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place it in the box at the front of the Church. The choice is yours to make.

Those who choose not to download the App or are unable to, should continue to bring their Test and Trace details in the usual way by means of an envelope.


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.


Parish newsletter

3rd Sunday of Advent

Dear Parishioners

Whilst it is welcome news that we are able to celebrate a public Mass in those of our churches that are able to reopen, we must still follow the Government and Diocesan guidelines which are in place for your safety and well-being.

For St. Patrick’s Church, this involves adhering to the maximum capacity of 70 people for a parish Mass and the need to provide a team of five volunteer stewards, to welcome you, look after you whilst in the Church and clean the Church afterwards.

I am afraid we are still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.

For the foreseeable future we are able to offer you Mass in St. Patrick’s Church on:

Tuesday mornings at 10.00 (no booking required)

Sunday mornings at 10.30 (booking is required)

Booking for this Sunday, 13th December is now closed, so please do not attend unless you have been assured of a place as we will be unable to welcome you into the Church.

You must reserve a place for Sunday Mass in advance

To ensure your health and safety and to prevent breaching our maximum capacity of 70 parishioners in the Church for a parish Mass, we will follow Government and Diocesan Guidelines and ask parishioners, who wish to attend Mass on a Sunday, to reserve a place in advance. This should prevent anyone having to be turned away, which I am afraid would have to happen if our capacity is reached. This system has been adopted in many parishes in our Diocese and seems to work satisfactorily.

To reserve a place for Mass next Sunday, 20th December, telephone

07526 232124 

on

  • Tuesday, 15th December between  5.30 pm – 7.00 pm
  • Wednesday, 16th December between 10.00 am – 12.00 pm
  • Thursday, 17th December between 5.30 pm – 7.00 pm
  • Friday, 18th December between 5.30 pm – 7.00 pm

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking times.


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 and on weekdays at 12.05. These services may be viewed live or anytime later at

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 or which may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions

With the exception of Tuesday and Sunday, when there is a public Mass in St. Patrick’s Church, I continue to celebrate Mass privately each day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week.

  • Monday – Joan and Eddie McAtominey
  • Tuesday: 10.00 in Church – Hughes, Knock and Kelly Families
  • Wednesday – LDM Brannigan Family
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – George, Molly & Lindsay Bradley
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday: 10.30 in Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen


Please keep in your prayers this week

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Kathleen Hughes and Joan McAtominey and,
  • Peter Morley who has died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the soul of your servant whom you have called from this life. May he be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united.

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Should I come to church?

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 60 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection.


Planning for Christmas

We are all aware that Christmas is going to be very different this year, socially and spiritually. The Tier 3 Restrictions which we must follow, to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus, will impact on us all. What is important is that we continue to adhere to them for the sake of the common good – a message which lies at the heart of our Christian faith.

As you are aware no Mass nor Service can take place in any Church without the presence of stewards to ensure all the guidelines for your safety and well-being are in place and being followed. After each service the Church must also be sanitised. A team of six stewards must be present for Mass to take place safely in St. Patrick’s Church.

Having consulted with our volunteer stewards about their willingness and availability to assist us over Christmas, we are able to offer :

Mass on Christmas Eve at 5.30 pm

Mass on Christmas Morning at 9.45 am

As our numbers are restricted to 70 people at each Mass, you will need to book a place to be able to attend Mass on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The facility to book for this period is outlined below. To enable as many people to attend as possible given the restrictions imposed on us, you may only book for either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, not both.

There is a possibility that we will not be able to accommodate everyone who wishes to attend on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. If that is the case, the Bishops of England and Wales urge those who cannot be accommodated to attend Mass on Boxing Day (The Feast of St. Stephen) or on Sunday, 27th December.

Once again, thanks to the generosity of our stewards, we will be able to offer Mass on Boxing Day, the Feast of St. Stephen, at 10.00 for which booking will not be necessary—but seating will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Booking will be necessary for Mass on Sunday, 27th December.

Remember too our Christmas Masses will be very different. As for every Mass currently celebrated in our churches, the restrictions mean that there will be no singing of carols or hymns, no offertory procession, no sign of peace, no readers nor servers and no children’s liturgy. The protocols you are asked to follow are in the attached document “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during Tier 3 Restrictions.”

Unfortunately it will not be possible to celebrate a Mass in St. Alban’s Church this Christmas. Fr. Patterson is still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.


You will need to reserve your place at the following Masses over the Christmas period:

  • Sunday, 20th December at 10.30 am
  • Christmas Eve, 24th December at 5.30 pm
  • Christmas Day, 25th December at 9.45 am
  • Sunday, 27th December at 10.30 am

Reserving places for Masses during the Christmas period

To book your place, please call:

07526 232124 

Please note, the booking line is only open for calls at the following times:

  • Tuesday, 15th December between 5.30 pm – 7pm
  • Wednesday, 16th December between 10.00 am – 12.00 noon
  • Thursday, 17th December between 5.30 pm – 7 pm
  • Friday, 18th December between 5.30 pm – 7 pm

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking times.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 3 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

The Church doors will open 20 minutes before Mass is due to begin. Please do not come any earlier but do allow yourself sufficient time to complete the necessary health and safety protocols. You may have to form a socially distanced queue outside.

Whilst we would always wish to welcome families back to Church, due to the Covid-19 Health and Safety requirements, we would suggest that children should only be brought to Mass if they are old enough to be able to adhere to the guidelines and can remain seated in their place at all times.

Please enjoy Christmas by Staying Safe and behaving sensibly

As we are aware, from 23rd to 27th December, people are allowed to form a Christmas bubble of three households.

At a recent Downing Street Press Conference, Professor Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer for England, who revealed he would be “on the wards” over Christmas said: “Would I want someone to see their family? Of course, that’s what Christmas is about. But would I encourage someone to hug and kiss their elderly relatives? No, I would not.”

“It’s not against the law – and that’s the whole point. You can do it within the rules that are there, but it does not make sense, because you could be carrying the virus and if you’ve got an elderly relative, that would not be the thing you’d want to do in the period where we are running up to a point where we actually might be able to protect older people. So I think people just have to have sense. The fact that you can do something – this is true across so many other areas of life – doesn’t mean you should.”

Professor Whitty also said it was “not a secret” that Christmas would increase the risk of transmission. “Take it really seriously during Christmas. Don’t do stupid things. Don’t do unnecessary things just because the rules say you can. Think sensibly.”


News from our School

This week, we would like to share a prayer with you written by Jude, aged 8.

Dear God,  I am so happy that Jesus is coming this Christmas.
He will show us how to forgive, care and love each other.
He will bless the sick and teach us to treat others with kindness.
I hope that the poor and homeless, will be fed and have shelter this Christmas.   

Advent Alms 2020

Moira Ashman, the Chief Executive of St Cuthbert’s Care has sent the following note:

This year, due to the very trying ongoing circumstances, St Cuthbert’s Care has been invited to deliver an online Advent Appeal via the Diocesan website. If you would like to support our charity’s work, the diocesan link can be accessed St Cuthberts Care. I am mindful of the financial pressures the pandemic has placed on many, so please, only support us if you feel able to do so. Thank you.


On leaving the Church – Please be responsible and adhere to the law

Under Tier 3 Restrictions, you must not mingle outside the Church after Mass. Parishioners are asked todisperse immediately on leaving the Church. Fr. Patterson urges those of you who come to Mass to follow this advice and in doing so set an example for others to follow and, of course, prevent the possible transmission of the coronavirus.


Northern Catholic Calendar

Copies of our Diocesan Year Book will be available to collect after Mass next Tuesday at a cost of £3.00. Please bring the correct money in an envelope and place it in the box provided.


Parish News by Email

If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to contact Father Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk and they will be added to our contact list.


Volunteers

A church can only reopen or stay open if there are sufficient volunteers to assist as stewards and cleaners at every celebration.

It is very easy to “sit back and let others do the work” but no church can fulfil the Government and Bishops’ Guidelines without an adequate number of volunteers.

If you would be able to help as a volunteer, and haven’t already done so, please email Fr. Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk. Ideally you should not be in a vulnerable category to assist as a volunteer and must not be deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable. The more volunteers we have, the less demanding it will be on your time, as it appears these  restrictions are going to be with us well into next year.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson continues to be so grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:-

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Donation

Fr. Patterson is very grateful for a Donation of £40.00 recently received for St. Patrick’s parish funds. 


Protect your loved ones

If you have downloaded the NHS App, it may be used to register your track and trace details when coming to Mass in St. Patrick’s Church. Simply scan the QR Code which is displayed in the Church and is specific to St. Patrick’s Church only. Please have your phone ready and the App open before entering the Church so that you do not create a “pinch point” by having to search for your phone in your pocket or bag.

Should you choose to “sign in” using the App, you should leave your phone switched on whilst you are in the Church, but please ensure it is in silent mode! You may of course continue to bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place it in the box at the front of the Church. The choice is yours to make. Those who choose not to download the App or are unable to, should continue to bring their Test and Trace details in the usual way by means of an envelope.


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.


Parish newsletter


2nd Sunday of Advent

Dear Parishioners

Now that St. Patrick’s Church has been able to reopen following the end of the National Lockdown and thanks to the generosity of our volunteer stewards, we are  now able to offer Mass on:

Tuesday mornings at 10.00 (no booking required)

and

Sunday mornings at 10.30 (booking is required)

Booking for this Sunday, 6th December is now closed, So, please do not attend unless you have been assured of a place as we will be unable to welcome you into the Church.

I am afraid we are still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.

You must reserve a place for Sunday Mass in advance

To ensure the safety and well-being of everyone, and  to prevent breaching our maximum capacity of 70 parishioners in the church for a parish Mass, we will follow Government and Diocesan Guidelines and ask parishioners, who wish to attend Mass on a Sunday, to reserve a place in advance. This should prevent anyone having to be turned away, which I am afraid would have to happen if our capacity is reached. This system has been adopted in many parishes in our Diocese and seems to work satisfactorily.

To reserve a place for Mass next Sunday, 13th December, please telephone

07526 232124 

on Wednesday, 9th December between  10.00 – 12.00 or on Friday, 11th December between 5pm – 7pm.

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking times.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email and can only be made for the approaching Sunday and not for dates in advance. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. For everyone’s safety, the rule of six still applies in our Church. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

Mass is at 10.30

The Church doors will open 20 minutes before Mass is due to begin. Please allow yourself sufficient time to complete the necessary health and safety protocols. You may have to form a socially distanced queue outside. Please read the Information sheet “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during Tier 3 Restrictions” which is attached to this Newsletter.

Initially we ask those parishioners who are able to attend Mass on a Tuesday, to consider not attending the Sunday Mass in order to provide the opportunity for those who can only attend on a Sunday to do so. This is only a suggestion and will be reviewed on a weekly basis depending on the demand for places on a Sunday. Do remember that Sunday obligation remains suspended. Due to the restrictions, the format of Sunday Mass will be exactly the same as Mass on Tuesdays. You do not need to reserve a place for 10.00 Mass on a Tuesday morning.

Whilst we would always wish to welcome families back to Church, due to the Covid-19 Health and Safety requirements, we would suggest that children should only be brought to Mass if they are old enough to be able to adhere to the guidelines and can remain seated in their place at all times. 

May God bless you and your family 

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 and on weekdays at 12.05. These services may be viewed live or anytime later at

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 or which may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions

With the exception of Tuesday and Sunday, when there is a public Mass in St. Patrick’s Church, I continue to celebrate Mass privately each day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week:

  • Monday – In Thanksgiving (AGW)
  • Tuesday10.00 in St. Patrick’s Church – Billy Knowles
  • Wednesday – John Earl
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – Andrew Sloan
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday: 10:30 in St Patrick’s Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners (telephone booking required)

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Billy Knowles and,
  • Ellen McFarling and Joan Powell who have died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the souls of your servants whom you have called from this life. May they be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united.”

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Should I come to church?

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 60 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection


Planning for Christmas

We are all aware that Christmas is going to be very different this year, socially and spiritually. The Tier 3 Restrictions which we must follow, to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus, will impact on us all. What is important is that we continue to adhere to them for the sake of the common good – a message which lies at the heart of our Christian faith.

As you are aware no Mass nor Service can take place in any Church without the presence of stewards to ensure all the guidelines for your safety and well-being are in place and being followed. After each service the Church must also be sanitised. A team of six stewards must be present for Mass to take place safely in St. Patrick’s Church.

Having consulted with our volunteer stewards about their willingness and availability to assist us over Christmas, we are able to offer:

Mass on Christmas Eve at 5.30pm and,

Mass on Christmas Morning at 9.45


As our numbers are restricted to 70 people at each Mass, you will need to book a place to be able to attend Mass on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The facility to book for this period is outlined below. To enable as many people to attend as possible given the restrictions imposed on us, you may only book for either Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, not both.

There is a possibility that we will not be able to accommodate everyone who wishes to attend on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. If that is the case, the Bishops of England and Wales urge those who cannot be accommodated to attend Mass on Boxing Day (The Feast of St. Stephen) or on Sunday, 27th December.

Once again, thanks to the generosity of our stewards, we will be able to offer Mass on Boxing Day, the Feast of St. Stephen, at 10.00 for which booking will not be necessary—but seating will be allocated on a first come first served basis. Booking will be necessary for Mass on Sunday, 27th December.

Remember too our Christmas Masses will be very different. As for every Mass currently celebrated in our churches, the restrictions mean that there will be no singing of carols or hymns, no offertory procession, no sign of peace, no readers nor servers and no children’s liturgy. The protocols you are asked to follow are in the attached document “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during Tier 3 Restrictions.”

Unfortunately it will not be possible to celebrate a Mass in St. Alban’s Church this Christmas. Fr. Patterson is still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.


You will need to reserve your place at the following Masses over the Christmas period:

  • Sunday, 20th December at 10.30 am
  • Christmas Eve, 24th December at 5.30 pm
  • Christmas Day, 25th December at 9.45 am
  • Sunday, 27th December at 10.30 am

Reserving places for Masses during the Christmas period

To book your place, please call:

07526 232124 

Please note, the booking line is only open for calls at the following times:

  • Tuesday, 15th December between 5.30 pm – 7pm
  • Wednesday, 16th December between 10.00am – 12.00noon
  • Thursday, 17th December between 5.30 pm – 7 pm
  • Friday, 18th December between 5.30pm – 7pm

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking times.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number nor by email. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. Under Tier 3 Restrictions you must only sit with members of your own household or bubble—the rule of six being the limit in any one bench. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

The Church doors will open 20 minutes before Mass is due to begin. Please do not come any earlier but do allow yourself sufficient time to complete the necessary health and safety protocols. You may have to form a socially distanced queue outside.

Whilst we would always wish to welcome families back to Church, due to the Covid-19 Health and Safety requirements, we would suggest that children should only be brought to Mass if they are old enough to be able to adhere to the guidelines and can remain seated in their place at all times


News from our School

The children at school continue to share prayer services online during Advent for all the other classes as well as for their parents and families. Year 4 reflected on this Sunday’s Gospel as they gathered around the advent wreath.

As we approach the end of term, our families have shown huge generosity in donating items of food to create hampers for families in our school community. We offer our heartfelt thanks to everyone who contributed. As always, we received far more items than we asked for which just reminds us how caring our families are, even in these difficult times.

Advent Alms 2020

Moira Ashman, the Chief Executive of St Cuthbert’s Care has sent the following note:

“This year, due to the very trying ongoing circumstances, St Cuthbert’s Care has been invited to deliver an online Advent Appeal via the Diocesan website. If you would like to support our charity’s work, the diocesan link can be accessed St Cuthberts Care   I am mindful of the financial pressures the pandemic has placed on many, so please, only support us if you feel able to do so. Thank you.”


On leaving the Church – Please be responsible and adhere to the law.

Under Tier 3 Restrictions, you must not mingle outside the Church after Mass. Parishioners are asked todisperse immediately on leaving the Church. Fr. Patterson urges those of you who come to Mass to follow this advice and in doing so set an example for others to follow and, of course, prevent the possible transmission of the coronavirus.

Parish News by Email

If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to contact Father Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk and they will be added to our contact list.


Volunteers

A church can only reopen or stay open if there are sufficient volunteers to assist as stewards and cleaners at every celebration.

It is very easy to “sit back and let others do the work” but no church can fulfil the Government and Bishops’ Guidelines without an adequate number of volunteers.

If you would be able to help as a volunteer, and haven’t already done so, please email Fr. Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk. Ideally you should not be in a vulnerable category to assist as a volunteer and must not be deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable. The more volunteers we have, the less demanding it will be on your time, as it appears these  restrictions are going to be with us well into next year.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson continues to be so grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.


The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:-

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Protect your loved ones

If you have downloaded the NHS App, it may be used to register your track and trace details when coming to Mass in St. Patrick’s Church. Simply scan the QR Code which is displayed in the Church and is specific to St. Patrick’s Church only. Please have your phone ready and the App open before entering the Church so that you do not create a “pinch point” by having to search for your phone in your pocket or bag.

Should you choose to “sign in” using the App, you should leave your phone switched on whilst you are in the Church, but please ensure it is in silent mode! You may of course continue to bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place it in the box at the front of the Church. The choice is yours to make.

Those who choose not to download the App or are unable to, should continue to bring their Test and Trace details in the usual way by means of an envelope.


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.


Parish newsletter

Parish Newsletter; 1st Sunday of Advent

Dear Parishioners

You may remember that just before the current lockdown, with the agreement of our stewards, we decided to discontinue the Thursday evening Mass and replace it with a Mass on Sundays in St. Patrick’s Church at 10.30. I am grateful to our stewards for agreeing to this proposal—for without their support and commitment, we are unable to open the Church for Mass.

Introducing a Sunday Mass alongside the Tuesday morning Mass is still in keeping with the Government guidelines of limiting social contact as much as possible and minimising interactions with other households as we will be offering two Masses each week as we originally planned.

As Places of Worship may reopen for public worship from 2nd December, St. Patrick’s Church will reopen for Mass  at 10.30 on Sunday, 6th December.

I am afraid we are still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.

You must reserve a place for Sunday Mass in advance

To ensure the safety and well-being of everyone, and  to prevent breaching our maximum capacity of 70 parishioners in the church for a parish Mass, we will follow Government and Diocesan Guidelines and ask parishioners, who wish to attend Mass on a Sunday, to reserve a place in advance. This should prevent anyone having to be turned away, which I am afraid would have to happen if our capacity is reached. This system has been adopted in many parishes in our Diocese and seems to work satisfactorily.

To reserve a place for Sunday Mass please telephone

07526 232124 

on Wednesday, 2nd December between  10.00 – 12.00 or on Friday, 4th December between 17.30 – 19.00. 

This number will be unavailable outside of the above booking times.

Bookings cannot be made via the presbytery telephone number and can only be made for the approaching Sunday and not for dates in advance. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be asked to provide your name and telephone number to comply with the NHS Test and Trace system and also the number in your family if you are attending as a household. For everyone’s safety, the rule of six still applies in our Church. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

Mass is at 10.30. The Church doors will open 20 minutes before Mass is due to begin. Please allow yourself sufficient time to complete the necessary health and safety protocols. You may have to form a socially distanced queue outside. Please read the Information sheet “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during Tier 3 Restrictions” which is attached to this Newsletter.

Initially we ask those parishioners who are able to attend Mass on a Tuesday, to consider not attending the Sunday Mass in order to provide the opportunity for those who can only attend on a Sunday to do so. This is only a suggestion and will be reviewed on a weekly basis depending on the demand for places on a Sunday. Do remember that Sunday obligation remains suspended. Due to the restrictions, the format of Sunday Mass will be exactly the same as Mass on Tuesdays. You do not need to reserve a place for 10.00 Mass on a Tuesday morning.

Whilst we would always wish to welcome families back to Church, due to the Covid-19 Health and Safety requirements, we would suggest that children should only be brought to Mass if they are old enough to be able to adhere to the guidelines and can remain seated in their place at all times.       

May God bless you and your family 

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 and on weekdays at 12.05. These services may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 or which may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions

During the lockdown I will continue to celebrate Mass privately every day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week

  • Monday – Hughes, Knock and Kelly Families
  • Tuesday – Brian Grace Snr and Brian Grace Jnr
  • Wednesday – Brian Quigley
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – Private Intention (NF)
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen

Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly and,
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially Maurice Brown, Peter Hughes and John Knock.

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Should I come to church?

If you have been confirmed as clinically extremely vulnerable the government is advising that you do not need to shield at the moment, but if you are in this category, you should still try to keep your overall social interactions low, as outlined in the Government Guidance.

Some people, including those aged 60 and over, are described as being clinically vulnerable, meaning that they are at a higher risk of severe illness from the coronavirus. Individuals who fall within this group are advised to minimise contact with others outside their household.

If you fall into either of these categories, or if you feel unsure about returning to Mass, you need to consider the wisdom of doing so. Please remember, you are not obliged to attend Mass. Sunday obligation is suspended.

You must not come to Church if you are feeling unwell or if you suspect that you have Covid-19, (high temperature, new persistent cough, lack of taste or smell) or if you are living with someone who has or is suspected of having Covid-19. You MUST self-isolate in accordance with HM Government guidance and arrange for testing.

Please note, that while we will attempt to take all appropriate precautions consistent with the advice of public health authorities to ensure our Church is Covid-19 safe, parishioners should understand that they assume the risk of contracting Covid-19 any time they enter a public space, since such precautions do not eliminate the risk of infection.


Planning for Christmas

Christmas is going to be very different this year, socially and spiritually. The restrictions we must follow, to reduce the transmission of the coronavirus, will impact on us all. What is important is that we continue to adhere to them for the sake of the common good – a message which lies at the heart of our Christian faith.

It is hoped to have a Mass on Christmas Eve and one on Christmas Day in St. Patrick’s Church this year. However we are only able to do so with the help of our Volunteer stewards. As you are aware no service can take place without the presence of stewards and the church must be sanitised after each celebration.

Until such time as Fr. Patterson is able to determine the availability of our stewards, it is still uncertain as to what Masses will take place and at what time they will be celebrated. As our numbers will be restricted to 70 you will need to book a place to be able to attend Mass on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day. Further details will hopefully be available next weekend.

Remember too that Mass will be very different. As for every Mass currently celebrated in our churches, the restrictions mean that there will be no singing of carols or hymns, no offertory processions, no sign of peace, no readers nor servers and no children’s’ liturgy. The details are in the attached document “Attending St. Patrick’s Church during tier 3 restrictions.”

There is a possibility that we will not be able to accommodate everyone on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. If that is the case, Bishop Robert urges those who cannot be accommodated to attend Mass on Boxing Day (The Feast of St. Stephen) or on Sunday, 27th December for which booking would be necessary.

Unfortunately it will not be possible to celebrate a Mass in St. Alban’s Church this Christmas. Fr. Patterson is still unable to reopen St. Alban’s Church as we cannot at present provide a Covid safe environment which is deemed essential by the Government and the Diocese before a church can open. The situation will continue to be reviewed.


News from our School

Year 3 led our first Advent prayer service and shared it online with all classes and all our parents too. It was lovely to be together to begin our Advent journey.


Parish News by Email

If you are aware of parishioners who would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please ask them to contact Father Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk and they will be added to our contact list.


Volunteers

A church can only reopen or stay open if there are sufficient volunteers to assist as stewards and cleaners at every celebration.

It is very easy to “sit back and let others do the work” but no church can fulfil the Government and Bishops’ Guidelines without an adequate number of volunteers.

If you would be able to help as a volunteer, and haven’t already done so, please email Fr. Patterson at felling.stpatrick@rcdhn.org.uk. Ideally you should not be in a vulnerable category to assist as a volunteer and must not be deemed to be clinically extremely vulnerable. The more volunteers we have, the less demanding it will be on your time, as it appears these  restrictions are going to be with us well into next year.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson continues to be so grateful to those parishioners who are able to regularly contribute to parish funds, either by bank transfer or by dropping  their  weekly offering envelopes  through the presbytery letterbox. This helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions and choose to make a bank transfer, the parish can still reclaim the tax on your offering. It would be helpful to enter your name and Gift Aid envelope number as the reference when making the transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when you feel able to come.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:-

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Protect your loved ones

If you have downloaded the NHS App, it may be used to register your track and trace details when coming to Mass in St. Patrick’s Church. Simply scan the QR Code which is displayed in the Church and is specific to St. Patrick’s Church only. Please have your phone ready and the App open before entering the Church so that you do not create a “pinch point” by having to search for your phone in your pocket or bag.

Should you choose to “sign in” using the App, you should leave your phone switched on whilst you are in the Church, but please ensure it is in silent mode! You may of course continue to bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place it in the box at the front of the Church. The choice is yours to make.

Those who choose not to download the App or are unable to, should continue to bring their Test and Trace details in the usual way by means of an envelope.


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.


Parish newsletter

33rd Sunday of the Year

Dear Parishioners

I do hope you are all coping with the restrictions of the current lockdown in an attempt to play our part in helping to reduce the spread of the coronavirus in our community. We should know in another couple of weeks if the current restrictions are being adhered to and thereby working.

Within the boundaries of St. Alban’s and St. Patrick’s parishes there have been 155 positive cases of Covid-19 recorded during the period 7th – 13th November. The figure for the entire Borough of Gateshead in the same period is 922 cases. All above the national average.

So we still have work to do as a community by staying at home, washing our hands regularly, wearing face coverings in enclosed spaces and reducing our contact with other people keeping 2 metres social distancing.

The development of vaccines has been headline news this week so maybe there is a glimmer of light in the tunnel, although Professor Jonathan Van-Tam’s comments should be heeded, so that we have a realistic approach to the months ahead.

When asked if the vaccines would provide a “get out clause” to the current wave of the virus he replied “absolutely not.” He went on to say, “We are going to have to push the second wave down by non-pharmaceutical interventions, social distancing, staying-at-home – all the things that we’re doing right now. There’s no short cut to the future that you and I both aspire to.”

He refused to estimate how soon a successful vaccine could result in a return to normal life, saying: “I’m very hopeful that over time, vaccines will make a very important difference to how we have to live with Covid-19 in the long run.”

So we need to remain patient but hopeful, continuing to look after one another by staying at home, protecting the NHS and in doing so, helping to save lives.

Pray for one another and  please pray for me. 

May God bless you and keep you safe

Fr. Patterson


Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on Sunday at 11.30 and on weekdays at 12.05. These services may be viewed live or anytime later.

Alternatively, you may like to follow daily Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond celebrated live at 10.00 or which may also be viewed any time later.


Mass Intentions

During the lockdown I will continue to celebrate Mass privately every day. The following Intentions will be remembered this week

  • Monday – Rose Brady
  • Tuesday – John and Annie Donald
  • Wednesday – David and Paul Clay
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday – John Clark
  • Saturday – Fr. “P’s” Intentions
  • Sunday – For the intentions of all our parishioners

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with me, you may wish to make this act of spiritual communion:

Lord Jesus, I believe that you are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive you into my soul. Since I cannot now receive you sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace you as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to you. Never permit me to be separated from you. Amen


Please keep in your prayers this week:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • Fr. Kevin Daly and Fr. Jim Dunne, both of whom are active priests in parishes, but are currently quite poorly
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time especially David and Paul Clay and,
  • Father Stephen Johnson, one of our retired priests, who has died. “Receive Lord into tranquillity and peace the soul of your servant whom you have called from this life. May he be taken up into glory with your Son in whose great mystery of love we are all united. Amen

A Prayer for Carers, Nurses and Doctors

Lord Jesus, who healed the sick and gave them new life, be with doctors, nurses and carers, as they act as agents of your healing touch. In desperate times, keep them strong yet loving; and when their work is done, be with them in their weariness and in their tears. Amen.


Mass for those who have died from Coronavirus

Bishop Robert will celebrate Mass in the Cathedral on Friday, 20th November at 12.05 for all who have died as a result of Covid-19. As we are in national lockdown, no one is able to attend in person, but Mass will be live-streamed.


Message from the Bishops

The Regulations passed into law by Parliament during the week prohibit the gathering of people for communal worship in churches and other religious buildings.

Cardinal Vincent Nichols and Archbishop Malcolm McMahon, on behalf of the Bishops’ Conference, urge us, as responsible citizens, to observe these Regulations, which have the force of law.

The Bishops go on to say: “We do this in solidarity with so many others on whom are being imposed restrictions which impact severely on their lives and livelihoods. It is also important to recognise that these Regulations are not an attack on religious belief.

At this difficult moment, we must sustain each other in our patterns of prayer……… observing the Vigil of Christ the King (21st November) as a day of prayer for the ending of this pandemic. And we encourage you all in your practical service and support of each other and those around you in need.”

In the words of St. Paul to Titus 3:1: ‘Remind them to be obedient to the officials in authority; to be ready to do good at every opportunity’.


Remember our Hindu brothers and Sisters

I suspect some of us may have half an eye on Christmas and be wondering how it may be celebrated. I think it is fairly safe to say it will not be what we are used to.

The Vatican sends heartfelt greetings to Hindu communities throughout the world for whom today, Saturday 14th November, marks the annual celebration of Dwali, the Hindu Festival of light, when families and friends would normally gather together for great festivities.

This year, due to Covid-19, it will be celebrated more intimately amongst households in an attempt to prevent the transmission of the coronavirus.

This may be a pointer to us as we ponder our own celebration of Christmas.


Third World Group

Thanks to those who continue to support our Third World Group who have sent £150.00 to Cafod this week for the Covid-19 Appeal.


Parish finances and offerings

Fr. Patterson continues to be grateful to those parishioners who, in these financially challenging times, regularly contribute to parish funds, which helps to meet the day to day financial  commitments of our churches.

During the lockdown, parishioners may choose to make their offering by bank transfer directly into the parish accounts or by cheque; the details of the accounts are below.

If you are taking your daily exercise, in keeping with the National Restrictions, you may choose to drop your envelope through St. Patrick’s Presbytery letterbox. For security reasons, please do not put any envelopes through St. Alban’s Presbytery door. Envelopes for St. Alban’s parish should be posted through St. Patrick’s Presbytery door only.

If you Gift Aid your offertory contributions, the parish can reclaim the tax on your offering should you wish to make a bank transfer.

Alternatively, you might wish to put aside your envelopes each week and bring them along to church when we are able to reopen.

The details for bank transfers and cheques are as follows:-

St. Alban’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s HSBC bank account name: DHN Felling St Patrick, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 52010453


Protect your loved ones

The NHS COVID-19 app is now available to download for free in England and Wales. It is the fastest way to see if you are at risk from coronavirus. The faster you know, the quicker you can alert and protect your loved ones and community.


Diocesan Website

More information and support may be found on our Diocesan website.