Parish newsletter

5th Sunday of Lent

Lent at Home

We are striving to reach out to everyone during Lent inviting you to engage in a “Personal Pilgrimage” in your own homes knowing that your fellow parishioners are doing the same.

It is a time to reflect and identify with Christ’s forty days of solitude in the wilderness; his personal journey to Jerusalem, then on to his death on the Cross from which he would rise to offer us the gift of the new life of the Resurrection. Our “Personal Pilgrimage” will prepare us to celebrate and enjoy that new life at Easter.

Do try to set aside some extra time each day for prayer and reflection in the “solitude” of your own home or room, knowing that we do so as a parish family and that praying apart can help to bring us together.

You may also like to “Share a Prayer” with other members of the parish, so that although we pray and read in private, we know we share our prayers with one another. Thanks to those who are sending us prayers. If you would like to share a prayer with other parishioners please email your prayers to or drop them through the letterbox of St. Patrick’s presbytery by Thursday. We will produce our own prayer sheet based on the prayers that you send, which will be published on line and also included as printed copies with the Parish Newsletter in our churches.

Please let us have your prayers for Palm  Sunday by Thursday.

Becoming more fully alive in God – a thought for Lent

Lent is an old English word for spring. In the life of the Church it is a time which calls us to seek out and receive again God’s grace that we need so that we can flourish and grow and become more fully alive in God.

Often our sins, our weaknesses, frailties, anxieties and addictions entomb us – we become like Lazarus. Christ who is the ‘resurrection and the life’ calls us forth from the tomb to do some personal spring cleaning and to consider what needs changing in our lives so that charity and kindness and gentleness can replace those dry bones and dry hearts that can obscure the light of God shining within us.

So let us try, in this fifth week of Lent to take to heart the words of St Paul from the second reading read in our churches this weekend: ‘If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit who dwells in you.’

All are welcome

Everyone is welcome to join us for the celebration of Mass in St. Patrick’s and St. Alban’s churches. It is a joy to welcome people of other faiths or none who 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 consume immediately 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.

Covid 19

Fr. Patterson is making little progress recovering from post Covid systems. He continues to be advised to rest as much as possible. He seeks your understanding and patience and remains grateful for your prayers and kind wishes.

Celebrations during the coming week.

  • Monday:  No Mass
  • Tuesday: 10am Mass in St. Patrick’s Church – Funeral Mass for Pat Maddison
  • Wednesday: No Mass
  • Thursday: 10am Mass in St. Patrick’s parish centre – In Thanksgiving (IW)
  • Friday: No Mass
  • Saturday: 6pm Mass in St. Alban’s Church – For the Intentions of all our parishioners
  • Sunday: 10am Mass in St. Patrick’s Church – Jimmy Connolly

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 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 and Fr John Reid, one of our retired priests, who is currently unwell
  • all those whose memories we cherish at this time, especially Ken and Brida Clay, Jimmy Connolly and Brian Gilmore and,
  • Pat Maddison and Thomas Conway who have died. May they rest in the peace of the Risen Lord.

Holy Week and Easter Services

As the Solemn Celebration of the Vigil of Easter takes place in St. Patrick’s Church, Fr. Patterson had hoped to be able to celebrate Mass on Easter Sunday in St. Alban’s Church. Unfortunately his slow recovery from the effects of Covid, which considerably limit his strength and energy, will prevent him from doing so.

The following services will take place in St. Patrick’s Church. 

  •  A Reflection on the journey of Jesus to his crucifixion (Stations of the Cross) on Wednesday, 5th April at 10am in St. Patrick’s parish centre
  • The Mass of the Lord’s Supper on Holy Thursday (6th April) at 6pm
  • The Solemn Celebration of the Lord’s Passion on Good Friday (7th April) at 3pm
  • The Solemn Celebration of the Vigil of Easter on Holy Saturday (8th April) at 6pm
  •  The Mass of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday (9th April) at 10am.

In the neighbourhood

As well as Mass in St. Patrick’s on Easter Sunday at 10am, Mass will also be celebrated in St. James, Hebburn at 9.15am and in St. Aloysius, Hebburn at 11am. There is no Mass on Easter Sunday in St. Augustine’s, Leam Lane.

The Sacrament of Confirmation

The Sacrament of Confirmation will be celebrated in St. Patrick’s Church on the Feast of Christ the King (Youth Sunday) , 26th November, during the 10am Mass.

There will be an introductory evening for all those who are interested in being confirmed, along with their parents, on Friday, 12th May, in St. Patrick’s parish centre at 6.30pm.  This will be followed by a special celebration during Mass on Sunday, 28th May in St. Patrick’s Church which is the Feast of Pentecost.

Confirmation is open to young people from St. Alban’s and St. Patrick’s who will be in Year 8 and above from September, 2023. Prospective candidates should be regularly attending Mass and will need to take part in a period of preparation which will be outlined at our introductory gathering on 12th May.

If you haven’t already registered to be part of the programme please email your details to the parish office at

Holy Communion under Both Kinds

The Bishops’ of England and Wales have decided that, given the current situation regarding the spread of Covid and the fact that most people have had three or four vaccinations, now would be a suitable time to grant permission for the resumption of the distribution of Holy Communion under both species.

Please note that this is a permission and not a requirement. The decision as to whether or not to reintroduce this custom rests with each parish priest.

Taking into account the views of our Eucharistic Ministers from St. Alban’s and St. Patrick’s, who would be involved in the distribution of the Precious Blood and having to consume what remained after Holy Communion and considering the demographics of our parishes along with the high transmission rate of Covid,  Fr. Patterson does not feel it is appropriate to reintroduce this custom at the present time.

Please remember that the Doctrine of Concomitance, which we were all taught at school, affirms that Jesus is entirely present, body, blood, soul and divinity under the form of both bread and wine. It is also worth noting that Holy Communion under both kinds was only reintroduced into the Mass during the 1970s after having been discontinued in the thirteenth century.

Diocesan Review – Closing date Monday, 27th March

The investigation commissioned by the Dicastery for Bishops has issued a survey to be completed by parishioners.  This is an anonymous survey, all answers are provided in complete confidence, and you are asked to give your own individual views. 

The survey will run until Monday 27th March, 2023 and can be accessed at or through the Diocesan website.  Please complete the survey only once, even if you hold more than one role in the Diocese.  A paper copy of this survey, for those without internet access, is available from the sacristy after Mass.

Lenten Booklet of Reflections

The Diocesan Vicariate for Faith & Mission has produced the second booklet of Lenten reflections for this year. The reflections have been contributed by a range of clergy, religious and lay people to express the richness and variety of our Diocesan community. Unfortunately the booklet is only available online.

Love the Stranger

Last week the Bishops of England and Wales launched a booklet entitled “Love the Stranger”. It is a remarkably radical statement of Catholic Social Teaching on refugees and migrants. The booklet places the human being at the heart of our pastoral outreach, looking beyond statistics and policies to the person – each with a name, a face and a story. 

The Holy Places Collection

This collection was originally taken on Good Friday but in recent times has been taken on Palm Sunday (next Sunday, 2nd April). Should you wish to contribute to this collection, please place your offering in an envelope marked “Holy Places” and deposit it in one of the collection boxes at the entrance to our churches. Those of you with boxes of envelopes should find an envelope in your box.

Lenten Alms Appeal

The Appeal this year will help St. Cuthbert’s Care raise funds to purchase a small vehicle to be used across their two nursing homes. If you wish to support this appeal, please place your donation in an envelope marked “Lenten Alms” and place it in one of the collection boxes at the entrance to our churches.

Your Weekly Offering by Standing Order

Fr. Patterson has had several requests recently for the details required to make your weekly offering by Standing Order. They are set out 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

You are still able to Gift Aid your offering by Standing Order. If you are not already in the Gift Aid scheme and would like to join, please email John, the Gift Aid organiser for both of our churches who will send you the necessary form. You must be a tax payer to Gift aid you contribution. John’s email is

Petitions for Lourdes

One of our parishioners will be going on pilgrimage to Lourdes in Easter week and has offered to take any prayer petitions people may wish to send to be placed in the Grotto at Lourdes. Should you wish to send a prayer petition please place it in an envelope marked “Lourdes petition” and deposit it in one of the collecting boxes at the entrances to our churches before Good Friday. Please do not put money in your envelope as these are prayer petitions not Mass offerings. Your petitions are not opened in Lourdes and are burnt after a suitable period of time.

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