Welcome to our new website!
Saint Mary’s Catholic Church is located in the very heart of Hexham, situated at the top of Battle Hill, it has been the centre of worship for the Catholic Community since 1822. However, Catholic worship has continuously been offered for many centuries in various locations around the town, both prominent and hidden, during times of peace and turmoil. When lands were granted to Saint Wilfrid by Saint Etheldreda in the seventh century, he established a monastic community and the Faith established deep roots in the hearts and lives of the people of Hexham. This has continued to the present day and has down the centuries seen many raised to the altars; several bishops in times of peace and fearless martyrs who died for the Mass and to preserve the strong links established with the Holy See.
When the current Church was opened, Catholics were treated with suspicion and the opening of such a prominent building reflected a definite thawing of relations between the Catholic Community and their neighbours. Today, as a member of Churches Together in Hexham we work with the members of other churches and ecclesial communities witnessing to the Gospel and working for the common good. Our desire is to see the full and visible communion of the Church and we strive on with that aim.
In 1832, Saint Mary’s opened a school which has continued to offer Catholic Education to those who choose it ever since, currently children attend St. Mary’s Nursery, First School and Saint Joseph’s Middle School the continuity of a long tradition of Catholic Education.
With the Restoration of the Hierarchy in 1850, the historic importance of the Church in this small town was highlighted when the Diocese of Hexham was erected. However, given the immense changes in regional demography brought about by the Industrial Revolution and the subsequent influx of workers into Tyneside, many of whom were Catholic, a short time later it was renamed the Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle.
Our website reflects the beauty of our Church which whilst constructed in stone and mortar, is alive in community, worship, service and the witness of her many members. The celebration of the Sacraments, particularly the Sacrifice of the Mass is the beating heart of our community which allows us to share the life of Christ in our families, community and world.
Please enjoy browsing our website and, if you are planning to visit us, please be assured that a warm welcome awaits you here at Saint Mary’s.
With every prayer and blessing,
Fr Christopher Warren