Parish newsletter

The Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ

Dear Parishioners

Meals are important, but so many of us have lost sight of that in today’s fast food society when it is rare for people to sit down to a meal together. It’s often much easier to put a ready meal in the microwave or to order a delivery online and then to eat it in front of the TV.

For Jesus meals were very significant, as the second reading heard at Mass this weekend reminds us. (1 Cor 11:23-26). That moment when Jesus gave us the central act of Catholic worship, a sacred meal, by which his followers would be nourished by his own Body and Blood foreshadowing the banquet of heaven.

To receive the Body that was given for us and the Blood that was shed for us is not an excuse for a party or getting dressed up. It is to be called to follow the example of Jesus’ act of total self-giving; to be strengthened to live holy lives, devoted to God and the needs of our brothers and sisters.

That is why the Mass matters and should be at the centre of our lives as Catholic people for it calls us to live in tune with the sacred meal that is set before us.  

May the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ bring eternal life to those who receive it. 

Fr Patterson

Eucharistic Festival at Ushaw  –  Fully Booked

This event which is being held on Sunday is now fully booked. You are asked not to attend unless you have registered and have received an acknowledgement of your booking.

Refreshments after Mass

Refreshments will be served in St. Patrick’s parish centre after Mass this Sunday, 19th June.

Could you join the rota to help make tea and coffee?

All are welcome

Everyone is welcome to join us for the celebration of Mass in St. Patrick’s church. In recent times, it is has been a joy to welcome those people of other faiths or none who have come to join us in worship.

Currently, only baptised Catholic people are able to receive Holy Communion and we ask that when you approach the altar you extend your hands towards the minister who will place the sacred host in your hand which you should then immediately consume before returning to your place.

If you are not a Catholic or are indisposed to receive Holy Communion, you are invited to come forward at the appropriate time and receive a blessing, indicating your desire by folding an arm across your chest.

 Mass Intentions

Fr. Patterson will celebrate Mass for the following Intentions during the coming week. You may wish to wear a face covering when attending Church.

  • MondayNo Mass
  • Tuesday: 10am in St. Patrick’s Church – Patsy and Rose Wright and Patricia Jameson
  • Wednesday: (Private Mass) – Fr. Peter Smith
  • Thursday10am in St. Patrick’s Church – LDM Makepeace and Shanks Family                            
  • Friday: (Private Mass) – Fr. Richard Harriott
  • Saturday: 6pm in St. Alban’s Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners
  • Sunday:10am in St. Patrick’s Church – John Donald 

Mass to view on line

Mass is live streamed from our Cathedral on a Sunday. Visit the Cathedral website.

Alternatively, you may like to follow Mass from the Holy Name, Jesmond. Visit the website for Mass times this week.

When you are unable to celebrate Mass with us 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:

  • all our parishioners who are sick, housebound or in hospital
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time and,
  • George Owens who has died. May he rest in peace. 

A Prayer for those who have died from Covid

Gracious God, as we remember before you all those people who have died from the coronavirus, surround us and all who mourn with your compassion. Be gentle with us in our grief, protect us from despair and give us grace to persevere and face the future with hope. We make this prayer in Jesus Christ our risen Lord. 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.

A Prayer for the Ukraine

Lord God, hold the people of Ukraine deep in your heart. Protect them from violence, from political gamesmanship, from being used and abused. Give the nations of the world the courage and the wisdom to stand up for justice and the courage to care generously. Take from us those traits that see us pursuing our own needs and wants before those of others. Teach us how to live in love and dignity and respect, following your ways. We ask this in your name and for your sake. Amen

A Prayer for Corpus Christi

Gracious and merciful God, in a wonderful Sacrament you have given us a memorial of the passion of your Son. Grant that we who receive this great Sacrament, may grow to be like him in all things until we come to your eternal joy; through our Saviour Jesus Christ who is alive with you and the Holy Spirit, God now and for ever. Amen.

Day for Life – A Prayer for the Elderly

I thank you, Lord, for the comfort of your presence. Even in times of loneliness you are my hope and my confidence, my rock and my fortress since my youth!

I thank you for having given me a family and for having blessed me with a long life. I thank you for moments of joy and difficulty, for the dreams that have already come true in my life and for those that are still ahead of me. I thank you for this time of renewed fruitfulness to which you call me.

Increase, O Lord, my faith, make me a channel of your peace, teach me to embrace those who suffer more than me, to never stop dreaming and to tell of your wonders to new generations. Sustain me in weakness and help me to live life to the full in each moment that you give me, in the certainty that you are with me every day until the end of time.     

Bishop Barron’s Sunday Sermons

Each week Bishop Barron offers a Sunday sermon.

It was recently announced that Pope Francis has appointed Bishop Barron as the new Bishop of the Diocese of Winona-Rochester (Minnesota).

The Past Two Years  –  Moving On – 23rd June, 2002 at 18.30 – St. Patrick’s Parish Centre

We have all been affected one way or another by the Covid pandemic and life will never be quite the same.

If you would value an opportunity to pause, reflect on your experiences, thoughts, feelings and memories of the past two years we invite you to join together in St Patrick’s parish centre on Thursday, 23rd June at 6.30pm.

In a gentle and non threatening way, we will try to link our feelings to the “Road to Emmaus” where the two disciples walked and talked with Jesus sharing their joys, their challenges, their fears and their grief. Then there was Thomas who, from a place of fear and vulnerability, discovered Jesus inviting him to touch his wounds.

Maybe we need to be more accepting of our own vulnerability and, like Thomas, share our woundedness with Jesus.

We offer this opportunity where you can feel safe, can be heard and also be a listener for others in sharing our stories from the past two years. Maybe now is the time to lay our fears aside so that like the disciples walking to Emmaus, we might recognise that Jesus was and is walking alongside us

You may like to bring a friend, relative or neighbour.

Mass sheets

For a trial period, we shall offer you a Mass sheet when you enter church which provides the text of the prayers and readings for Mass. This sheet will replace the Parish Mass Books which we have used in the past.

St. Patrick’s Church Cleaning

Thanks to those parishioners who came along to clean the church last Friday evening. Your time and effort were greatly appreciated.

Are you able to support the Diocesan Refugee Project?

 Your ongoing support of this project would be welcomed.  It supports over 400 asylum seekers. The project tries to provide them all with a bag of food and those who are destitute also receive a supermarket voucher. Donations of sugar, biscuits, tinned fish in oil, tins of tomatoes and chick peas may be left on the table to your right as you enter the front of St. Patrick’s Church or on any table if you enter by the rear door. A basket is also available in the porch at St. Alban’s. They are particularly in need of toiletries and shampoo. Please note: baked beans and tinned meat are not required.

Vigil Mass on Saturdays in St. Alban’s Church.

St. Alban’s Church is now reopen for a Vigil Mass on Saturdays at 6pm.

Following Bishop Robert’s advice with the current level of help we have available to us, we are only able to open the church on a Saturday evening. For the time being, it will remain closed during the week for all services. Bishop Robert has asked Fr. Patterson to review the situation after the summer to assess the level of need and support.

If you are attending Mass in St. Alban’s Church, please note the following:

  • Parishioners are asked to enter and leave the church by the main doors only. The side door should only be used as an emergency exit.
  • You are invited to sanitise your hands as you enter the church
  • You may wear a face covering during Mass
  • Due to the low ceilings over the congregation, we must ensure adequate ventilation to help dilute and disperse viral particles.  Both inner doors at the rear of the church will remain open throughout Mass (the outer doors will normally be closed) and the side windows will be open. Please dress accordingly as there may be a draught in some areas of the church.
  • No collection will be taken during Mass, by way of passing baskets along the benches, but we do hope you will support our parish financially by placing your offering in the offering box as you enter the church.  Alternatively you may consider contributing by standing order, the details for which are:  
    Account name: DHN Pelaw St Alban, Sort code: 40-34-18, Account No: 92010984

St. Patrick’s Church needs more support from you

Fr. Patterson wishes to thank those parishioners who have already offered their support in various aspects of parish life, but it is insufficient to be able to rebuild our future.

We need more volunteers for the following:-

  • preparing light refreshments in the parish centre after Sunday Mass
  • joining the music ministry, whether as an instrumentalist or singer
  • assisting with the children’s liturgy when we are in a position to restart it
  • offering to help with the opening of the church for Mass and tidying up afterwards on weekdays
  • reading at Mass on Tuesdays and/or Thursdays

The more support you give will make it less demanding on any individual or group/team. It is important that we should all play our part in helping to rebuild our shared parish family.

Please indicate your offer of support by emailing the parish office at

 Current Diocesan COVID Controls

In keeping with the National Guidelines for Churches issued by the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales the following  arrangements for St. Patrick’s Church are as follows:

  • If you are displaying any symptoms of Covid-19 you should stay at home.
  • Hand sanitiser will continue to be offered as you enter and leave church.
  • You may wear a face covering during the celebration of Mass.
  • Indoor congregational singing can take place with a general encouragement that face coverings are worn.
  • Although there is no formal social distancing by way of seating, we ask that when you take your seat, you are sensitive to the needs of other people who are already in a bench and may not be comfortable if you “snuggle up” to them. We have plenty of seating space.
  • We will, for the time being, continue to invite you to come forward for Holy Communion, row by row from the front. Holy Communion will continue to be distributed under one kind only. At the end of Mass, you may leave at your leisure.
  • It is still important to ventilate our buildings. This has the effect of diluting and dispersing viral particles.
  • Welcomers will be on hand to greet you and care for you.

Are you on a rota?  –  please read on……..

If you have joined one of our rotas in either St. Alban’s or St. Patrick’s churches and find you are unable to fulfil your role on a particular occasion, would you please arrange a substitute. Telephone numbers of other volunteers are printed on each rota.

This is particularly important to ensure that our liturgy and parish activities flow smoothly. With reduced numbers attending our churches, it cannot be presumed that someone can just be “plucked out of the congregation” to take your place. Many thanks.

An Invitation

Bishop Robert Byrne cordially invites you to a Mass to mark the 80th birthday of Bishop Seamus Cunningham which will be held on Thursday, 30th June at 12.05pm in St Mary’s Cathedral.  All are most welcome to attend.

Peter’s Pence

The annual collection for Peter’s Pence takes place next Sunday, 26th June, 2022.  Offerings are designated for the Pope’s apostolic and charitable ministry. Should you wish to support this you may put your donation in an envelope marked “Peter’s Pence” and place it in the offering boxes in both churches. Those of you with boxes of envelopes should find an envelope in your box.

Day for Life Message from Pope Francis

Pope Francis sends cordial greetings and good wishes to those participating in the 2022 Day for Life which is celebrated in Scotland, England and Wales, and Ireland under the theme “Caring for the Older Person”. His Holiness prays that the efforts in the defence of the God-given value and dignity of every human life, in all its stages, will be fruitful in drawing attention to the particular worth of our elderly brothers and sisters, for they “are not outcasts to be shunned but living signs of the goodness of God who bestows life in abundance.”He likewise trusts that a greater awareness of the essential contribution the elderly make to the spiritual and material wellbeing of every society will help to counter the “throwaway culture” and foster the bonds of charity and fraternity between the generations. With these sentiments and the assurance of his closeness in prayer, the Holy Father sends his blessing as a pledge of joy and peace in Jesus who is the way, the truth and the life. 

Day for Life collection

Should you wish to support the work of the Anscombe Bioethics Centre ( and other life-related activities supported by the Church you may put your donation in an envelope marked “Day for Life” and place it in the offering boxes in both churches. Those of you with boxes of envelopes should find an envelope in your box.

Rwanda Statement from our Bishops

Bishop Paul McAleenan, who has special responsibility for migrants and is Chair of the Office for Migration Policy at the Catholic Bishops’ Conference made this statement on June 14th 2022:

“The UK’s plans to forcibly deport to Rwanda some of those seeking refuge in our country is shamefully illustrative of what Pope Francis has called the ‘loss of that sense of responsibility for our brothers and sisters on which every civil society is based.

The plan is presented as a humanitarian response to combat people trafficking and smuggling yet the result will compound the suffering of those who are already victims. Crime is defeated by confronting the perpetrators not by punishing victims. This scheme will increase the difficulties of those hoping for a new beginning, and it does nothing to address the problems which cause people to flee their homes.

Migration is a complex issue, but it is not resolved by delegating our roles and responsibilities to other countries. Our starting point should be the innate dignity of every person, created in the image and likeness of God. Our Christian faith demands that we respond generously to asylum seekers whose dignity must be protected and upheld.

Whether or not the flight to Rwanda takes off today we are now in a new situation. With greater force we insist that asylum seekers are not commodities for profit, nor are they problems to be rejected and deported by government. Instead we should be guided by the four verbs provided by Pope Francis in our approach to migrants and refugees, ‘Welcome, protect, promote and integrate’.

The Parish Newsletter by email

Could you help to offset the cost of printing paper copies of the Newsletter by having it sent to you by email? Many of you have been receiving it electronically throughout the pandemic and continue to do so. If you do not already receive it in this way and would like to receive the Newsletter and other news from the parish by email, please send your request to and you will be added to our contact list.

A few printed copies will still be available from St. Patrick’s and St. Alban’s churches, on the days they are open for Mass, for those of you who do not have access to email.

Thanksgiving Mass

A Mass of Thanksgiving for NHS Staff, chaplains and Carers will be celebrated by Bishop Robert on Thursday, 14th July, 2022 at 7pm in St. Mary’s Cathedral. This Celebration will be the opportunity to express the gratitude of the Diocese to medical, nursing and healthcare staff and chaplains as we continue to emerge from the COVID Pandemic.

Taking the collection during Mass

Although no collection is taken during Mass, by way of passing baskets along the benches, we do hope you will support our church financially by placing your offering in the boxes at the entrances to the church. Alternatively you may consider contributing by standing order the details for which are found below.

Your Offertory contributions

To reduce the demands on parish administration, we invite those of you who feel able, to consider making your weekly offering by Standing Order.  The bank details you require for this are printed below. 

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

If you are a tax payer and are not a member of the parish gift aid scheme please consider joining the scheme, it costs you nothing and the parish benefits by being able to reclaim the tax you have already paid on your offering. The parish receives 25p of every £1.00 you give from HMRC. All that is required, is for you to complete a simple form which does not involve you disclosing any personal financial information and is held securely by the Diocesan Finance Office. To obtain a form, or for more information, please email St. Patrick’s Gift Aid organiser at

For the time being, enquiries concerning the Gift Aid scheme for St. Albans Church should be directed to Fr. Patterson at

Covid cases on the rise after Platinum Jubilee Celebrations

The Office of National Statistics has published figures to show that in the most recent week (ending 11 June for England, Wales and Northern Ireland; week ending 10 June for Scotland), there was an increase in the percentage of people testing positive for COVID-19 in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland likely caused by infections compatible with Omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5. In England, the estimated number of people testing positive for COVID-19 was 1,131,000 equating to around 1 in 50 people.

Please get vaccinated

The Catholic Church continues to promote the participation of everyone in the Covid vaccination programme as part of its mitigation of virus transmission in church and ancillary buildings.

Pope Francis also urges us to do so.

ZOE Covid fortnightly update.

This week Professor Tim Spector shares some research on Long COVID by his colleagues at Kings College London using ZOE Health Study data, as well as the initial results of the menopause and food survey. He also shares the latest COVID updates, as well as news on monkeypox. 

In a separate blog, the updated symptoms of Omicron are discussed.

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