On 18 December 2021, Corpus Christi Church in Gateshead hosted the formal launch of Caritas Hexham and Newcastle. Bishop Robert Byrne CO began the event, taking place in the Diocese’s Year of the Eucharist, by celebrating the Eucharist as an act of thanksgiving for all the work that happens in the Vicariate for Caritas, especially that of dedicated lay people who live out the call of Christ to serve all in need (Mt 25:40). In his homily, Bishop Byrne recalled the teaching of St Thomas Aquinas that, for Christians, love is a choice we make. We choose to love those in need just as the Good Samaritan chose to stop and help the man left on the roadside.
Raymond Friel, Chief Executive of CSAN, spoke at the event on the place of Caritas in the Catholic Church and how CSAN is developing within England and Wales. He recalled the words of Cardinal Tagle, ‘We are blessed to learn about life from the poor we serve. That is how to be Caritas.’
The event concluded with words of thanks from Fr Adrian Tuckwell, Episcopal Vicar for Caritas in the Diocese, to all who give so much of their time in social mission.
Caritas Hexham and Newcastle brings to 17 the number of dioceses in England and Wales that have formally launched a diocesan Caritas structure.
Picture: CSAN CEO speaks at the launch of Caritas Hexham and Newcastle, December 2021. Credit – Diocese of Hexham and Newcastle.