Synod: Spiritual Conversation

The Archdiocesan Synodal Team invites you to Spiritual Conversation, an event taking place at Ss John Cantius & Nicholas, Broxburn, on Saturday 4 May

Event schedule

1030: Holy Mass

1110: Synod 2024: Where are we now?

1125: Meet Fr John Deighan & the Synod team

1140: Spiritual conversation in groups

1240: Sharing the fruits (feedback)

1300: End

The conversation

The overall theme of our Spiritual Conversation will be The Role of the Laity in the Context of Our Archdiocese.

To help us explore this theme, we have formulated four questions, drawing on A Synodal Church in Mission, the synthesis document of the October 2023 Synod. We recommend downloading the event guide which has all the information you need.

Here are the questions:

(1) “In their immense variety, the charisms of the laity represent distinct gifts to the Church from the Holy Spirit that must be called forth, recognized, and fully appreciated” (from A Synodal Church in Mission). To what extent are we already doing this? How could we do it more effectively at parish and diocesan level?

(2) The Synthesis proposes an expansion of existing lay ministries (such as the ministries of lector and acolyte) as well as the creation of new ones (such as a ministry assigned to married couples to support marriage and family life, and a ministry of “listening and accompanying”). In the context of our Archdiocese, would this be an effective way of calling forth and recognizing the charisms of the laity?

(3) Are we doing enough to equip our lay people to be confident witnesses to Christ in today’s world? If not, what more could be done?

(4) The Synthesis proposes that the role of women in the Church be expanded, especially with regard to decision-making (although it does not open up the possibility of female priests). To what extent has this already happened in our Archdiocese? To what extent do we still have work to do?

The Format

In the first round of discussion, each person will have an initial two minutes in their group to offer their views on any of the above questions. That’s a short time, so we recommend you pick one question to focus on.

In any event, your two minutes will be more beneficial to those who are listening if you have an idea of what you want to say in advance. Therefore, prior to this event please prayerfully reflect on the questions. Then come along and speak from the heart!

When considering what you want to say, please remember that the scope of the Conversation is limited to our Archdiocese.


The reading material in the event guide will to help you prepare. 

So please take time ahead of the event for prayerful reading and reflection.

In this way, our Spiritual Conversation will be (a) as informed as possible and (b) infused with prayer.

Spiritual Conversation will be explained to you at the event, however you may wish to read about how it works here.

We look forward to seeing you!

Spiritual Conversation is a synodal event organised by the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh. It takes place on Saturday 4 May 2024 at Ss John Cantius & Nicholas, 34 West Main Street, Broxburn. Register here. Event guide here.

Parish Communicators Training Session

Join us for a 90 minute online session full of tips and advice on how to ensure that your parish Facebook page is the best it can be.


- Tips and guidance on content for Facebook and other social media platforms.

- Ideas and advice for other media forms - parish newsletters, posters/pamphlets and websites.

- A chance to hear from, and share, experiences and tips with other parish communicators.

- Follow-up practical support from the Archdiocesan communications director.

This event is for those who are administrators of a Parish Facebook page and/or who assist their parish priest in comms related work, such as compiling the parish newsletter. It's main focus will be Facebook. Please confirm your attendance with your parish priest.

The session will be hosted by Matt Meade, the communications director of the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh. There are 15 spots available at this session. One person per parish.

To register, email, stating your parish.

Mass for Married & Engaged Couples

The annual Mass for Married and Engaged Couples is on Wednesday 29 May 2024, 7.15pm, at Mary's Cathedral, Edinburgh.

Come and celebrate the gift of marriage, renew your commitment and receive God's blessing upon your love.

Enquiries and requests for special invitations to be posted to couples celebrating significant anniversaries may be sent to or by calling 0131 334 1693.

Deeply Devoted

This event will throw light on the background and efficacy of the prayers and practices in bringing us closer to God and helping us to live a life of holiness.

From the Holy Rosary, to Eucharistic Adoration, to the simple act of lighting a candle for a loved one, the Catholic tradition is rich in devotional practices.

The main speaker is Fr Kevin Douglas, who will speak on Devotions in the morning. We will also hear from Deacon Paul Brady of Glasgow Archdiocese.

Register here for this FREE event.

The event takes place on Saturday 27 April 2024 at The Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB (map below).




10:30am: Doors open/ tea & coffee

11:00am: Unpacking Catholic Devotions, with Fr Kevin Douglas

11:45am: Choice of sessions led by Catechetical Commission members:

1. Delving into the Divine Mercy: origins and practice of this beautiful and increasingly popular devotion.

2. A Saint for all Seasons: exploring devotion to saints - and how to find the one for you.

12:30pm: Lunch (light lunch provided).*


1:15pm: Talk and Q&A session led by Deacon Paul Brady on Sacramentals: exploring why Catholics use candles, statues, prayer cards, holy medals, rituals and lots more.

2:00pm: There’s Something about Mary: exploring Marian devotion.

2:30pm: Guided devotional prayer in St Margaret’s Chapel: The Divine Mercy followed by a decade of the Rosary and Marian prayers.

3:00pm: End.

This a free event, open to all. There is free parking onsite.

*Free lunch provided (small sandwiches and fruit). If you have food allergies/intolerances please being a packed lunch.

Deeply Devoted is organised by the Catechetics Commission of the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh. Queries: please email Christine Clark at

Easter Triduum at St Mary's Cathedral

The Sacred Triduum begins on Thursday. While Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday are not holy days of obligation, all are encouraged to attend these special liturgies in preparation for Easter.

On Holy Thursday, the Mass of the Lord’s Supper is at 7:00pm with Archbishop Cushley, and is followed by a procession with the Blessed Sacrament to the Altar of Repose, with watching until Night Prayer at 11:00pm.

Good Friday is a day of fasting and abstinence which means that all Catholics are obliged to abstain from meat, and all adults between 16 and 65 are obliged to fast. The Passion Liturgy will be held at 3:00pm by Archbishop Cushley. For those who cannot attend, there will be Stations of the Cross at 7:00pm.

On Holy Saturday His Grace will celebrate the Easter Vigil Mass at 7:00pm and 19 catechumens and candidates will be received into Full Communion with the Catholic Church at this Mass.


Thursday 28 March | 7:00pm Mass of the Lord's Supper.

Friday 29 March | 3:00pm The Passion Liturgy.

Saturday 30 March | 7:00pm Holy Saturday at the Tomb of Christ.

Sunday 31 March | Noon Easter Sunday of the Ressurection of the Lord.

For more details of services and Masses over Easter at St Mary's Cathedral please visit:

Vocations Mass

The next Mass to pray for vocations to the priesthood and religious life in the Archdiocese is on Monday 22 April at Our Lady & St Andrew, 63 Stirling Street, Galashiels, TD1 1BS at 6:00pm.

TALK: Sir James MacMillan at St Mary's Cathedral

Join Sir James MacMillan, one of the world’s most successful living composers and Scotland’s best known Catholic musician, for a unique talk hosted by Friends of St Mary's Cathedral.

Sir James will explore how chant, as the music of Faith, has influenced the history of music.

Sir James MacMillan: Chant, the music of Faith and its influence on the history of music is a rare opportunity to hear insights from the Cathedral's Patron of Music, and one of the world’s most acclaimed classical music composers.

The event is FREE. Register here:

Chrism Mass

The Chrism Mass takes place at St Mary's Cathedral in Edinburgh on Tuesday 26 March at 7:00pm.
Archbishop Cushley will consecrate/bless the holy oils that will be given to parishes and clergy will renew their priestly promises to serve God & His people.
No registration required.
Clergy only can let the Cathedral know they are coming at this link:

Euthanasia: A Warning from Canada

Alex Schadenberg is one of the world’s premier opponents of euthanasia and assisted suicide.

With Liam McArthur MSP planning to publish his proposed Assisted Dying for Terminally Ill Adults (Scotland) Bill imminently, Alex will warn of the dangers of Scotland following the example of Canada in legalising assisted suicide and euthanasia.

This 30 minute free webinar is brought to you by Care Not Killing and the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh. Register here.

The Passion in St John's Gospel (Webinar)

Join Monsignor Patrick Burke, from St Mary’s Cathedral, to meditate on the Passion of Christ as written in the Gospel of St John.

This Zoom event is at 6:00pm on Palm Sunday (24 March). Join us and start Holy Week in a spirit of reflection.  

Register at here.