Newcastle Diocese Generosity Week recap

First published on: 11th October 2021

As we reflect on a rigorous week of gift-giving, podcast listening and meeting new people, let’s look back at some of the wonderful ways people rose to the challenge and gave back during Generosity Week.

So many amazing parishes dedicated sermons to the cause, while some individuals took charge and came up with personal, innovative ways to reflect on God’s generosity and share that around the community.

Joanne Christie, Generous Giving Advisor, said: “Over the course of Newcastle Diocese Generosity Week, I’ve been absolutely overwhelmed and uplifted to hear yet more wonderful stories of generosity coming from our parishes.

“There have been celebrations, fundraisers - both for our churches and other charitable organisations, acts of kindness from young and old alike, not to mention huge amounts of preaching and teaching about God’s generosity to us!

“As people have been touched and inspired by what they’ve heard I’ve also learned of some wonderfully generous and in fact sacrificial acts of individual giving in response. We have so much to be thankful for!”

To celebrate Generosity Week, Barbara Golightly of St John’s, Backworth created 200 bouquets of mini paper flowers. These lovely handcrafted gifts were given to attendees of the church’s Sunday morning worship, each receiving six bouquets to share as they see fit. These brilliant designs came with a tag reading ‘Do good and be rich in good deeds. Be generous and willing to share.’ Barbara made 70 bouquets for her sister church St Alban’s, Earsdon. They were laid out on each person’s Order of Service titled ‘Celebrating Generosity’.

St Alban's Earsdon and St John’s Backworth also managed to raise over £900 during their Harvest Festival service to pay for two outreach workers for one year to help Tanzanian farmers increase the yield of their harvest. This was more than double their original target! Their generosity didn’t end there, as they went on to fill two wheelbarrows full of supplies for The People’s Kitchen!

Young people from Newburn Parish took to the generous message by weeding, tidying and planting bulbs in the parish churchyard. They also started feeding their birds every week as part of ‘eco-church’, an initiative that the youth are keen to keep up.

The adults at Newburn Parish are generous with their time too! Roz Cant, a member of the congregation, has a very busy schedule but volunteers as a street pastor at weekends. You can listen to her story here.

Church of the Good Shepherd, Battle Hill organised a ‘Pink Night’ – a night of fun and fellowship with a raffle and tombola in the run up to Generosity Week, raising over £450 for Breast Cancer Now.

During its Harvest Service celebrating generosity and thanksgiving to God, Church of the Good Shepherd also made gifts to North Tyneside charity Walking With, donating money as well as two full car loads of food.

At the same service, a flower stand was generously donated by the family of a very dear and faithful late church member who was not only part of the flower team but also the eldest member of the congregation at aged 103.

To conclude Generosity Week and as a ‘thank you’ for all the generosity shown, a church supper was organised by Revd Julie Mooney.

Holy Cross, Haltwhistle held an autumn fayre during Generosity Week and raised over £600, thanks to the generosity of those who donated cakes, crafts and food for the event. Churchwarden Sheila Williams said the support of the local community was “overwhelming”. 

St Mark's, Shiremoor launched Generosity Week with a Celebration of Generosity service. To thank everyone who supports St Mark’s, cake and prosecco was served after the service!

As part of Generosity Week activities, St Aidan’s Church, Morpeth Parish used the ‘Day Five Challenge’ to look at how it can serve others. The church rose to the occasion by hosting a ‘Soup and Song’ event for the local community where members of the parish were generous with their gifts: playing the organ, singing, soup-making or providing a listening ear. It was such a success that St Aidan’s is hoping to repeat the event!

The church also created a fantastic video shown during Generosity Week about how we respond to Gods abundant generosity.

St Paul’s, Whitley Bay raised £400 for the Soroptimists’ ‘Toilet Twinning Project’, in which a new toilet is donated to a deprived location when one is built in the local community.  The three toilets at St Paul's have been twinned with a church and community toilet block in Nigeria, a tap in Ethiopia and a tap in Nepal. The generosity of this parish will undoubtably change the lives of three communities with poor sanitation.

At St John’s, Wallsend, a parish pilgrimage up Roseberry Topping saw over £1000 raised to repair damage to the church roof, thanks to the generosity of sponsors.

At Embleton Vincent Edwards C of E Primary School , students in ‘Orca class’ let their creativity flow while designing some wonderful watercolours.

These watercolours were then used to make cards and sold locally to raise funds for their local church, Holy Trinity Church, Embleton. These cards and postcards are available for purchase in the church and in the parish rooms.

Pupils at Warkworth Church of England Primary School were also inspired to be generous after seeing the shocking scenes on the news about the ongoing unrest in Afghanistan. They were moved to fill their school hall with donations for the refugees who have made it safely to the UK.

You can view some of our photos from Newcastle Diocese Generosity Week below...
Plenty of colourful items were for sale as part of Haltwhistle’s Autumn Fayre
Revd John Vilaseca and Soroptimist Linda Johnson helped raise more than £400 as part of a ‘toilet twinning' project

Church of the Good Shepherd hosting their ‘Pink Night’ fundraiser

The youth of Newburn Parish were hard at work weeding in the church garden
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