Tuesday, June 04, 2013

The Forest to Murmur no more.

At the weekend I was able to reveal that the bishop has asked me to move parish. I have been eight years in Forest Hall and wondered if I might be reaching my sell-by date. However I was surprised to hear I will be moving back to my former parishes in Gateshead: St Wilfrid`s and St Joseph`s although this time I`ll be living at St Joseph`s. A community of sisters now lives at St Wilfrid`s presbytery.

Not being in Forest Hall made me think that it would be pointless still to continue Forest Murmurs. As this year we are celebrating Wagner`s two hundredth anniversary of his birth he might like his title back again!

Things are changing on Tyneside with the Extraordinary Form. The Mass which started at St Dominic`s in Newcastle in 1992 and which I used to celebrate twice a month for the first couple of years is going to stop. This means the only Sunday Mass on Tyneside will be the Gateshead one which I started at St Wilfrid`s in about 1997 before moving it to St Joseph`s where it has carried on being said by my successor Fr Adrian Dixon. Fr Dixon is having a sabbatical year so I`ll be taking on the weekly Sunday Mass again which I am happy to do. If the St Dominic`s congregation transfers across the river then there should be a sizeable congregation.

I will miss life at Forest Hall and Longbenton. My successor here will be Fr Sean Hall. While it has been a bit bumpy at times here I have also had good support and will miss many people. However I`m only going across the river to Gateshead. I look forward to working again with my former parishioners.
Bishop Seamus Cunningham at St Joseph`s

I will continue to blog but I need another title. Ite ad Joseph occurred to me first but it seems to be too general. One feature of St Joseph`s is that the site of the martyrdom of Blessed John Ingram is in the parish and his death is commemorated each year with a procession from Newcastle so `Doing the Ingram Walk` occurred to me but might be thought of as flippant. So I`m still waiting for inspiration. 

This isn`t the last post here. I`ve had in mind to do one on The Disappearing Glories of Killingworth but it requires me getting out with my camera and I`ve not got round to it as yet.

I move parish about the end of August. Going back to where you were seems popular at the moment


Regular at Thornley said...

Sorry Father, but there is still a weekly Sunday Mass at Thornley, Durham. It's disappointed that this Mass is not on your radar.

EF Supporter said...


There is also a Mass at Thornley and one in Barnard Castle on Sundays. I do hope we aren't becoming parochial as EF congregations, and failing to see beyond our own borders.

God bless you in your move.

Fr Michael Brown said...

I`m fully aware of the Mass at Thornley and at Barnard Castle but I wouldn`t class them as being on Tyneside. I`ve emended the post to make that clearer.

Fr Dickson said...

To Regular at Thornley:

Father Brown is speaking about Tyneside, but I understand where you are coming from in that the Diocese being named ‘Hexham and Newcastle’, readers might get the impression that the Diocese extends up from the Tyne but not below. As I’m sure you know if you come to me regularly, all those who say the EF in the Diocese work together –note our co-operation from Solemn High Masses.
Fr Dickson

Fr Michael Brown said...

Thanks Fr Dixon. I thought I had made it clear first time I was talking about Tyneside and was rather disappointed that the only comments I got were complaints about not mentioning Thornley (and Barnard Castle).

I would very much like to see an EF Mass in the diocese in each of our major towns on a Sunday.

Rachel said...

would the EF Mass at St.Joseph's still be at 12 noon on a sunday or do you intend to change the time?

Fr Michael Brown said...

Rachel, I`ve not decided anything as there is a lot to consider.12 wouldn`t be a time I would choose to have Mass but we need to see what works best for the whole parish.

Gertrude said...

Well Father, I wish you God's speed, and would thank you for your 'murmerings' for which I have thoroughly enjoyed, been edified, informed, and sometimes amused!

Where ever you go your parishioners shall surely be blessed.

Zephyrinus said...

Fresh pastures. Fresh challenges. I'm sure your present Parishioners will miss you, Fr, and your future Parishioners will welcome you.

May God continue to Bless you.

Anonymous said...

Every good wish for your new move. May it be full of blessings for you and your new community.

1569 Rising said...


You had lots of support at Gateshead first time round, and you have made your mark on Forest Hall.
Personally, I welcome your transfer - not so far for me to travel, but the noon Sunday Mass time is extremely difficult for me due to domestic circumstances.
But, you will make your own decision based on circumstances as you find them.
Personally again, I am very grateful to you for your help. support and guidance.
God Bless

Catholic Coffee said...

Fr., you'll be missed at Longbenton and Forest Hall. May the Lord bless you and your ministry in Gateshead. New blog title: maybe it could be something pertaining to you rather than your location? That way we'd always know where to find you!

Malcolm said...

I wish you well Michael in your forthcoming move. Nearer to sunny south of H&N again.

Rubricarius said...

Bon voyage!

Anonymous said...


I am absolutely thrilled that you are coming back "home"!


Fr Michael Brown said...

Thanks PT. I`ve not heard v much from Gateshead so far so your comment is appreciated even as I try to work out PT!

Fr Michael Brown said...

It`s ok I`ve got PT!