Parish newsletter

The Feast of Pentecost

Dear Parishioners

We are fortunate that our volunteers have offered to open St. Patrick’s Church for Mass on Tuesday at 10 am when no booking will be needed, and on Sunday at 10.30 am when booking will be required.

There are a few places remaining for this Sunday, 23rd May, offered on a first come first served basis. Please bring Test and Trace details if you haven’t reserved a place. You will receive a warm and reassuring welcome.

To reserve a place for Mass next Sunday, 30th May, please telephone 07526 232124 on

Wednesday, 26th May between 5.30pm – 6.30pm

Friday, 28th May between 5.30pm – 7pm.

This number will be unavailable outside of the above 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 any other dates. Text messages cannot be accepted as a method of booking.

You will be encouraged 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. You should only sit with members of your own household or bubble. On arrival at the church you will be welcomed by a steward and your name will be checked against the booking list.

For Mass on Tuesday, where booking is not required, you are invited to bring your Test and Trace details in an envelope and place them in the box in church.

You may still be feeling a little hesitant about coming to Mass and that is perfectly understandable. The Sunday obligation is still suspended so you are under no obligation to attend Mass. You must not come to Church if you are experiencing any signs of Covid-19 or feeling unwell in any way.

The easing of restrictions which came into force on 17th May do not effect our Church. The mandatory wearing of face coverings, sanitising your hands, 2 metre social distancing and cleaning the church after each celebration remain in place within our church and the maximum capacity for a parish Mass remains at 70. So the church is as safe as we can possibly make it for you.

A shared Parish Roadmap has been prepared and distributed via email and at Mass in St. Patrick’s Church on Tuesdays and Sundays. It is designed to look at how we might be able to reopen St. Alban’s Church and fully reopen St. Patrick’s Church and parish centre once all the Covid restrictions have been removed.

I would like to thank those parishioners who have already responded to our Parish Roadmap and look forward to hearing from more of you by the end of May.

When reflecting on the proposals in the Roadmap, please remember that you are not being asked to take up the role of volunteering until all the Covid Restrictions have been removed for churches (whenever that may be). However it is important for us to have a bank of volunteers in place to enable us to determine whether we can reopen St. Alban’s Church and fully reopen St. Patrick’s Church and parish centre when the time comes. If you haven’t received a copy of the Roadmap, please contact me on

In the meantime please do all you can to look after each other in the coming weeks and months exercising caution as the Indian variant of Covid-19 continues to spread. Pray too that the Lord will watch over us and keep us safe.

May God bless you all on this great Feast of Pentecost

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 Sunday or anytime later. There are no weekday Masses at the Holy Name this week.

Mass Intentions for the coming week

With the exception of Sunday and Tuesday, Fr. Patterson will celebrate Mass privately during the week remembering the following Intentions:

  • Monday – Jim Connolly
  • Tuesday:  10.00 in St. Patrick’s Church – Jim and Michael McErlane
  • Wednesday – Harry Harvey
  • Thursday – The sick, their families, NHS staff & Care Workers
  • Friday –  Private Intention (G)
  • Saturday –  Fr “P’s” intentions
  • Sunday: 10.30 in St Patrick’s Church – For the intentions of all our parishioners – booking required

 When you are unable to celebrate Mass with 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 are not aware, a parish priest is obliged to celebrate Mass for the “Intentions of the Parishioners” every Sunday or Holydaywhich 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 and,
  • all those near and dear to us whose memories we cherish at this time

 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 time to pray

Please join together in prayer for the 127,710 people who have died in our country from the coronavirus. (Friday’s figure).

Gracious God, as we remember before you the thousands 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.

Pray for an end to the pandemic

Pope Francis encourages Catholics across the globe to dedicate the month of May to praying for an end to the pandemic by reciting the Rosary.  Each day will see Vatican News broadcast the recitation of the Rosary at 6pm Rome time  (5pm UK time) from the various Shines taking part in the initiative.

A God who speaks

This short video by Fr. Stephen Wang is the third in a series of videos, more of which will be shared with you over the next few weeks.

This video is entitled “A God who speaks.” Click here to view

Funerals in Church

The Government has announced that from 17th May, the number of people able to attend a funeral will depend on how many people can be accommodated safely within an individual place of worship with social distancing and where, in our case, the Diocese has carried out a risk assessment of the individual church and taken all reasonable measures to limit the risk of transmission of Covid-19.

In the case of St. Patrick’s Church the risk assessment carried out by the Diocesan Health and Safety Adviser has determined that a maximum of 70 people may attend a Funeral Mass or Service by invitation only. The numbers permitted in other churches will vary according to their own risk assessment.

To minimise the risk of viral transmission, the Government continues to advise that only the following should attend a funeral: members of the deceased person’s household, close family members and close friends.

For “Test and Trace” purposes, families will still be asked to provide the parish with a list of those people they will be inviting to attend a funeral who must also adhere to the Covid-19 protocols which are in place for the safety and well-being of everyone. The Funeral Director will explain these protocols to the bereaved family.

The Sacrament of Baptism

Covid restrictions and limited human resources to enable us to comply with these restrictions, prevent us being able to open St. Patrick’s Church for anything other than Mass on a Sunday and Tuesday and for funerals at present.

We are still unable to reopen the parish centre which prevents us offering the necessary baptismal preparation for parents who are considering presenting their child to the Church for Baptism.

As such, we are still unable to offer the Sacrament of Baptism in St. Patrick’s Church.

Mission Boxes

Thanks to those parishioners who support the work of the Missions by way of the Red Mission boxes you have in your homes. During the past twelve months you have raised £1,569.00 (St. Patrick’s) and £648.00 (St. Alban’s).

If you need to have your mission box emptied, this can be arranged in accordance with Covid restrictions by contacting Kathleen on 0191 440 5324.

Community Counselling Service

Bheith Ann is a brand-new Community Counselling Service available to all residents of Felling and the wider Gateshead area. It is supported by the Felling Irish Association and is taking referrals for those individuals with issues such as Bereavement and Grief, Loneliness, Stress, Anxiety, Depression, Relationship Problems, Post-Trauma Experiences and Bullying.

This is a free confidential service. It is delivered by a team of dedicated, trained counsellors and strictly in line with national, professional Codes of Ethical Practice. The sessions themselves are undertaken in one of the following ways – Face-to-Face (locally and safely within current covid regulations), Phone or via Zoom or Skype. In addition, the Bheith Ann Community Counselling Service also provides free access to the Anambron Specialist Counselling Service for Families bereaved by suicide.

All referrals are treated with the utmost respect, confidentiality, compassion and care. To make a referral, please ring the Bheith Ann Referral Helpline on 07425 768 957. If you simply want more information about the Service and how it works, please ring Neil Campbell (Service Co-Ordinator) on 07903 239 983.

Diocesan Justice and Peace Group

In October this year, the UK government plans to open an Immigration Removal Centre at Hassockfield on the site of the former Medomsley Detention Centre, near Consett. This will be for 80 women seeking asylum in the UK. A campaign group has described this proposal as “inhumane, unjust and incompatible with our faith which calls us to recognise the intrinsic dignity of each person. These women are not criminals to be locked up, but people like ourselves who have the right to a place of safety and to be treated with respect and compassion”. An interfaith prayer service will take place on Sunday 23rd May at 3pm as part of a united faith response. The Youth Ministry Team will join with the Faith Witness and will go live at the same time on YMT’s Facebook page on 23 May at 3pm.

Proud Catholics

Bishop Robert has asked that we draw your attention to “Proud Catholics,” established in November 2018, which is a support group for Catholics in the Diocese who identify as LGBT+ or who are questioning their sexual or gender identity. Members seek to encourage one another both in faith and in acceptance of their identity, with meetings on the third Tuesday of the month at St Andrew’s, Worswick Street, Newcastle, or by Zoom. Meetings include Mass, prayer, reflection on the Scriptures, discussion of topics connected with faith and/or sexual/gender identity, and social time. Meetings are open to anybody supportive of the aims of the group. Proud Catholics also offers confidential advice and support to people who are questioning their sexual or gender identity, and to their families. For more information, please phone Isabel on 07858 934457, email, or visit the Proud Catholics website.

Roadmap Step 3  (from 17 May)

These are the changes  that came into effect on 17th May.

The Prime Minister offers us this sound advice:-  whilst social distancing with close family and friends is now a matter of personal judgement, we are asked to remain cautious around close contact, like hugging. Remember too that you should always make space for other people to keep their distance if they want to.

We are not permitted to interact with anyone outside of our group of six (or two households) indoors, or outside of our group of 30 outdoors, unless an exemption applies.

In some settings, there will be specific guidance that we will need to follow even when we are with friends and family. This is important to reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19 to other people such as staff and other members of the public. You should always follow guidance associated with the setting you are in (for example in a place of worship).

Covid-secure rules, including social distancing requirements, continue to apply in the workplace, and in businesses and public venues including places of worship. This guidance does not affect a site owner’s responsibility to calculate the number of people that can be accommodated with social distancing in place.

 Regional update

You may find this data from our region of interest. Figures are as of 21st May, 2021.

New cases in the last 7 daysDeaths in last 7 days1st jab –
% of adults
2nd jab – % of adults
South Tyneside15070943
North Tyneside9707138

CAFOD Covid-19 in India

India is facing a devastating second wave of coronavirus. The country has confirmed more than 20 million cases and more than 200,000 deaths, with some reports concerned that the number of deaths is just the tip of the iceberg, because of under reporting. The pandemic has put a strain on the medical infrastructure of the country, with hospitals unable to cope with the influx of patients. Our Catholic aid agencies will be distributing medical kits and setting up temporary treatment centres as well as providing PPE to frontline health workers. You can help by donating online via CAFOD.

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 and they will be added to our contact list.

Your ongoing financial support is welcomed and needed

Fr. Patterson continues to be grateful for your offerings during these difficult times and is especially grateful to those parishioners who regularly contribute to parish funds by standing order helping us meet the regular financial  commitments of our churches.

You may bring your envelopes to Mass on Tuesdays or Sundays or drop them through the presbytery letterbox. 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

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