On Tuesday, August 17th, St Robert’s welcomed the Refugee and Asylum Seekers Group from my former parish of St Cuthbert’s, Kenton, Newcastle. This was their annual outing. The support group was established some years ago when a number of Refugee’s and Asylum Seekers were been given council housing in Kenton. These individuals and families needed a lot of support and so St Cuthbert’s parish began a Drop-in Service on Monday afternoons where people could meet and socialise as well as receive help from various support agencies. The group had a wonderful day here at St Robert’s and they thoroughly enjoyed visiting our beautiful town. They had a great time in Carlisle Park. The children especially enjoyed the paddling pool.
St Robert’s had unexpected visitors on the night of Saturday 21st August. It was after 8.00pm when the door bell went and as I looked through the net curtain I could make out some scrawly looking character whom I thought was the vagabond who had been begging at the door earlier in the day. I was just going to tell him to get lost when I realised that it was in fact Fr Peter Kravos. What a surprise! Fr Peter is the Catholic Chaplain at Leeds University and he was passing through Morpeth with a group of students. The group of students from various nations had not gone home for the summer and so Fr Peter decided to take them away for a few days to explore Holy Island and Northumberland. They called into Morpeth to visit their fellow student, John David Laux, who is also studying at Leeds University. They had arranged to meet him at the Riverside Lodge. It was then that Fr Peter knocked on the door and invited me to join them for a drink. It didn’t take much persuasion! Fr Peter and myself trained together at Ushaw College many moons ago. I then invited them back for a night cap and to meet Fr Jim. Here is the photo I took of the group with Fr Jim. Fr Peter is first on the left with John David in the middle at the back. I can’t remember the names of the students but I know they were from the Cezch Republic, India, Uganda and Malaysia.
Fr Lawrence Jones