Starting on Sunday 30 September 2018, we began to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the opening of this church. Throughout the anniversary year, we have had the opportunity to reflect and celebrate what it means to be a member or friend of Holy Name today.

It is our hope that our various celebrations will have increased appreciation of the church itself and helped our community to continue to grow as a place where all – young or old, married, single or divorced, and whatever their sexuality – are welcomed and cherished.

Thank you so much to everyone who planned, prepared, participated in and celebrated the Anniversary celebrations, not least the Exhibition and the Fauré Requiem Mass on the weekend of 2/3 November 2019 which brought our celebrations to a close. All were exceptionally well done and truly memorable. I am immensely grateful for everyone’s contribution. Now here’s to the 100th! ~ Fr Michael Campion

Anniversary Events 2019

A Sign of Change

Helen Waddell, who works in TV production in London, made a film of 35 minutes about our parish which she has titled A Sign of Change. Helen explains: “A Sign of Change offers a window into how a modern, Catholic parish thinks and feels about Catholic identity, faith and the future. Filmed at Holy Name, we see how Fr Campion and the parishioners struggle with and draw strength from their Catholic faith at a time when the reputation of the Church is in crisis. The film will be screened in the hall on Saturday 23 March at 6pm – it will begin at 6pm sharp so please arrive early for drinks, snacks and seats!”

Centre for Catholic Studies (Durham) Lectures

We are delighted that the Centre for Catholic Studies at Durham University is working with us to celebrate our 90th anniversary. Four of their eminent scholars are giving presentations in our Church Hall over the next 12 months.

On Wednesday 8 MayGary Wade explored Seamus Heaney’s Catholic Sensibility

On Wednesday 5 June 2019 at 7pm Professor Paul Murray spoke on Catholicism Transfigured: The Current Catholic Moment and What It Requires of Us. In relation to a Catholic moment marked by widespread scandal, seemingly deepening divisions, and institutional diminishment, this lecture reflected on three key questions:
– What modes of response does this require of us?
– What does it require of us at the personal-spiritual level?
– What does it require of us at the ecclesial-theological level?

On Wednesday 2 October Professor Stephen Regan from Durham University will lecture on ‘English Literature and Catholicism: The Poetry of Devotion’, featuring poems by Francis Thompson, Gerard Manley Hopkins and Seamus Heaney. All are welcome.

History and Heritage

From Clare Roberts: Thanks to the award of Heritage Lottery funding, we are producing an exhibition and recording of voices in November to celebrate our church’s 90th anniversary. We now need as many members and friends of Holy Name as possible to be involved by sharing their personal memories of Holy Name. If you are willing to share photographs in hard copy or on a memory stick, please take an A4 envelope from the back of church, fill it with your memorabilia and bring it to the Memories Event on Sunday 9 June after 10am Mass. All will be returned to you. Please let me know if you can take part by contacting me either at or speak to me after Mass. Instructions are in the envelope.

Safeguarding and Abuse in the Church

How should a Catholic person respond to the continuing revelations of abuse and cover-ups in the Church? Do we remain silent, with heads down and hoping it will all just blow over? Many people, rightly, are left angry, hurt and bewildered. On Thursday 4 July at 7pm two parishioners – Sarah Woolrich and Nick Stonor – who are barristers with experience in family law, led a structured meeting in the hall to allow people to share their views and to discuss all the issues involved in the wider context of safeguarding and abuse in the Church.

Day of Reflection

On Saturday 7 September our spiritual Day of Reflection will be led by Fr Eamonn Mulcahy.

Fr. Eamonn is a Spiritan missionary from Manchester. A priest since 1980, he has been on mission in Congo-Brazzaville, Nigeria and Kenya. He has extensive experience of deepening the Faith Formation of Adults in the UK and leading spiritual retreats to priests, religious and lay-people in Europe, North America, Australia and Africa. Since summer 2013 Eamonn is back in the UK on the team of the inner-city Holy Spirit Parish in Manchester whilst working as one of the Episcopal Vicars for Religious in Salford Diocese. He teaches Systematic Theology one day a week in Oscott College Seminary, Birmingham, and still maintains active involvement in educating street kids back in the infamous slum of Kibera, Nairobi. He is passionate about communicating the beauty of our Faith and the interface between Theology and Spirituality.

Baptism Party

Parents who have had children baptised at Holy Name in the past three years are invited with all their children to a Party on Saturday 28 September.  Following a short Service in the church at 1pm for the blessing of the children and their parents, the Party will begin in the hall with refreshments, compliments of the parish, and some fun activities as well. If you are willing to help with this event, please contact Fr Campion or Barbara Cooper at the parish office.

Bishop’s Visit

Bishop Robert Byrne, installed as Bishop of Hexham and Newcastle at St Mary’s Cathedral on Monday 25 March, will celebrate Mass with us on Sunday 29 September at 10am. At the end of Mass he will dedicate the recently completed new church entrance (‘piazza’).

Requiem Mass

A Requiem Mass will be offered on Sunday 3 November for the deceased members and benefactors of our parish. The augmented Holy Name Choir will perform Gabriel Fauré’s Requiem in D Minor throughout the Mass.

Communal Anointing of the Sick

From Fr Campion: During this, our 90th anniversary, year we hope to have a communal celebration of the Anointing of the Sick. This will take place during a Prayer Service during the day in late spring or summer. This Sacrament is for people struggling with any form of pain, disability or illness. It … gives the grace of the Holy Spirit to those who are sick: by this grace the whole person is helped and saved, sustained by trust in God, and strengthened against temptations of the Evil One and against anxiety over death. Thus the sick person is able not only to bear suffering bravely, but also to fight against it. (Pastoral Care of the Sick, n. 6).

Previous Events

On Sunday 30th September 2018 we marked the 90th anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone for the church building with a simple Fizz and Cake reception after each Mass (just fizz in the evening). Many people took part – and said they’d like to see more occasions like this one!

The first of our celebrations took place on 23 June 2018 on HMS Calliope on the River Tyne. Guests began the evening with leisurely drinks on deck and in the Officer’s Mess while taking in the best views of the river. That very evening  they had the unique and privileged view of the spectacular water feature erected on the Tyne – as part of the Great Exhibition of the North – that was paying homage to one of the North East’s most famous landmarks, the Angel of the North.  Later, after enjoying sumptuous food prepared by the Navy’s chefs, they were able to dance the night away to a ‘live’ band.

Thanks to a generous sponsor (who wishes to remain anonymous) the cost of this unique celebration on the Tyne was about half what it normally would cost for such an event.

Other Events

Members and friends of Holy Name are invited to begin thinking of creative ways to celebrate the 90th within their own sphere of interest or activity in the parish. What does it mean to you to be a member or friend of this parish? And how would you like this to be celebrated and, perhaps, become better known for others to benefit?


In addition to fundraising for our parish, we are supporting a project in the parish of St Anthony in Walker to benefit young people. To the end of September nearly £10,,000 had been raised. So, if you can, you might host a small event in your home or workplace to support this very worthwhile project?


%d bloggers like this: