I read this sad bit of news about my former parish today:
Parish Future: The Future of Ss. Peter and Paul Church Longbenton
After consultation with parishioners and with his Council the Bishop has decided that the church at Ss. Peter and Paul should close. Among the reasons for this decision are the declining numbers in the congregation, such that the parish is not able to meet its annual running costs, as well as the impact of the relocation of St Stephen’s School. In the light of this very sad decision it is important over the next few months for people in the community to reflect on how best their pastoral needs for Sunday Mass and the sacraments might best be secured. This is something to be discussed with the Parish Council and at a further consultation meeting with the Vicar General and the Epsicopal Vicar in the autumn.
I hate it when Catholic churches close. St Wilfrid`s Gateshead was given a reprieve two weeks ago today in the light of the work done and money raised by parishioners. However we have just had an electrical inspection and although I haven`t seen the report as yet I hear that the estimate is for tens of thousands of pounds. My first reaction was `Who needs electricity?` given we flourished without it for 1900 years or so. However there are still hard times ahead for St Wilfrid`s I fear. The parishioners continue to impress with their dedication to saving the church. If you are in Gateshead on August 9th do come to this: