Diploma in Catechetics - Mass and Graduation

Holy Mass at St Margaret’s Chapel, with Archbishop Leo Cushley, followed by presentation of Diploma Certificates. Free parking onsite.

Erroll Bursary gives boost to theology students in Edinburgh!

A generous donation has led to the launch of a new bursary that will support students of a Catholic theology course in Edinburgh.

The Erroll Bursary Fund will contribute £500 towards fees on the two-year Master’s Degree in Theology at St Mary's University's Gillis Centre Campus.

The University itself will match each successful bursary application with a further £500.

It comes following a donation of £8,000 from the Honourable Peregrine Moncreiffe to the university's Gillis Campus.

Investment banker Peregrine Hay (main image, inset) became chief of Clan Moncreiffe in 1998.

A practicing Catholic, he is known as Moncreiffe of that Ilk after his clan link was recognised by the Lord Lyon. He is also the feudal baron of Easter Moncreiffe, the clan seat, in Perthshire.

Angus Hay (main image, right) representing his kinsman, made the donation this week at St Bennet's, the home of Archbishop Leo Cushley.

Mr Hay said: "This theology course is a wonderful way for people to advance in their knowledge and love of the Catholic faith.

“Peregrine became aware of it and wanted to make a donation so that the Erroll Bursary could be set up to give a helping hand to prospective students.”

I am very grateful to the Honourable Peregrine Moncreiffe for this kind and timely donation.

The fund is so-called due to the Hay family’s links with the Earl of Erroll title which goes back many centuries (Peregrine’s brother is the present 24th Earl of Erroll).

Archbishop Leo Cushley (main image, left) said: "The cost of fees for the Master's course can be a challenge for some students, so the Erroll Bursary Fund will allow us to offer them a contribution to the cost.

“That means greater accessibility to a qualification that provides an invaluable way for Catholics to hone and widen their understanding of the Catholic Faith at our Gillis Campus.

"I am very grateful to the Honourable Peregrine Moncreiffe for this kind and timely donation."

A spokesperson for St Mary's University said: “We are delighted and honoured by the generosity of the Hon. Peregrine Moncreiffe.

"Enabling people to study on the MA in Applied Catholic Theology will greatly aid the shared endeavour of St Mary’s University with the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, to equip the faithful to be of service to the Church and the world – an exciting opportunity we want to be open to as many people as possible.”

The MA in Applied Catholic Theology is a partnership between St Mary's University, Twickenham, and the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh.

It provides a thorough grounding in key aspects of Catholic theology, whilst developing the key skills to apply Catholic theology to the challenges and opportunities of the contemporary world. Teaching is flexible and the course is suitable for graduates of most academic disciplines.

To apply for the course and to find out more about the Errol Bursary Fund, visit stmarys.ac.uk/Edinburgh


Faith formation events announced

Discover the beauty and richness of the Catholic Faith with events to help inspire you to greater love of Jesus and His Church.

Our Catechetics events leaflet for 2022/23 will be in parishes soon (along with our annual events diary). Download a copy here.

Catechetics events 2022/23

 22-27 Aug Catechesis of the Good Shepherd

3 Sep Altar Servers’ Day

10 Sep Children’s Liturgy Day

8 Oct Day for Readers: Gospel of John

22 Oct Day for Musicians and Choirs

29 Oct Reflection Day for Diploma Students

5 Nov Talk on Family Relationships

28 Nov Advent Talk Series begins - Zoom event

28 Jan Called and Gifted Workshop

4 Feb Day for Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion

18-19 Feb Intentional Disciples Workshop

27 Feb Lent Talk Series begins - Zoom event

4 Mar Catechists’ Day

1 May Easter Talk series begins - Zoom event

All events at the Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Rd, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB (unless otherwise stated). Details of events will be published on this website and on our social media in due course. Events organised by the Catechetics Commission of the Archdiocese. The Archdiocesan Events Diary can be viewed and downloaded here (trifold format).

WATCH: Discover the MA Theology course

St Mary's University, Twickenham, invites YOU to study the MA in Applied Catholic Theology at the Gillis Centre Campus in Edinburgh this September.

To tell you all about it we teamed up with St Mary's University to host an online open evening. You can hear about what's involved, how it's taught and the support you'll receive. Watch it below or on YouTube (where video is divided into chapters)

What students say

The Course

The MA in Applied Catholic Theology provides a thorough grounding in key aspects of Catholic theology, whilst developing the key skills to apply Catholic theology to the challenges and opportunities of the contemporary world.

Teaching is flexible and adaptable and the course is suitable for graduates of most academic disciplines. Find out more at stmarys.ac.uk/Edinburgh


Pro-life Mass celebrates 'the goodness of life'

Parishioners from across the Archdiocese came together to “celebrate the innocence, the goodness of life” in Edinburgh recently.

They attended the annual pro-life Mass on the Feast of the Holy Innocents, at St Margaret's Chapel at the Gillis Centre.

In his homily, Archbishop Leo Cushley said: “Our business is to propose the goodness of life. It falls to you and me to do that in season and out of season, and to do it positively with a smile on our face.”

He added that “life is a gift from God to be protected in all circumstances” and called abortion "a tragedy, a shame on our culture. Pray for those involved in the abortion industry that they will come to see the goodness of life.”

Paul Atkin, pro-life officer for the Archdiocese said: "It was great to see St Margaret's Chapel full for the Innocents Mass and people came from as far as Stirling and the Borders.

"The event was organised by the parish pro-life group St David’s, Dalkeith, thanks also to the Knights of St Columba who did a great job stewarding."

If you want to be involved in helping protect the children in the womb and supporting their mothers in our Archdiocese contact Paul Atkin at prolife@staned.org.uk.

Relics of St Crescentia placed for veneration in St Margaret's Chapel

The relics of the little-known St Crescentia were today placed for veneration in St Margaret's Chapel at the Gillis Centre, Edinburgh.

We don't know very much about the saint, other than that she was a Roman girl Canonized by Pope Gregory XVI as a Virgin Martyr.

Her tomb was opened in Rome in 1781, and in 1839 - along with St Veronica Giuliani (a poor Clare nun) - the remains were deemed to be unquestionably those of one of the first witnesses of Christianity.

By special permission of Pope Gregory, her feast day is kept on 10th October, when traditionally the relics are exposed.

They were obtained for the then convent at St Margaret's by Mrs Colonel Hutchison, who had been received into the church there.

While granting Mrs Hutchison an audience, Pope Gregory asked what she would like as a gift. Mrs Hutchison replied that she would like the relics of a saint for her “eldest daughter", meaning the community of St Margaret's.

The reliquary of St Crescentia was designed by Augustus WN Pugin and made by Messrs Bonnar and Carfraw under the supervision of Bishop Gillis.

The Latin on it reads: "Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his holy ones."

St Crescentia, pray for us!

Altar servers make history

Altar servers made history by becoming the first members of the Guild of St Cuthbert in the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh.

Nearly 150 attended the Gillis Centre, Edinburgh, in brilliant sunshine last Saturday. They enjoyed training, testimonials and games before attending Mass together in St Margaret’s Chapel.

Named after a local saint, the guild encourages and rewards faithful altar servers throughout the Archdiocese.

To qualify for membership, each altar server had to serve at ten Sunday Masses, attend a training session and write a short essay. Just over 100 of them were awarded a medal featuring the St Cuthbert’s Cross.

Archbishop Leo Cushley said: “It was a real blessing to see so many young people happy to serve the Lord and being an example to their peers and their parents.

“This was a great day, full of fun.”

Father Daniel Doherty, Vicar Episcopal for Catechism, said: “There were servers from the four corners of the Archdiocese. It’s so uplifting and encouraging to see such a great turnout.”

See more pics on our Facebook.

Enthusiastic group on the road to teaching the faith

More pupils will benefit from learning the faith as a group of teachers earn their Catholic Teaching Certificate.

They attended the Gillis Centre in Edinburgh for the ‘Setting Out on the Road’ course, delivered by The St Andrew’s Foundation at the University of Glasgow.

The Foundation is responsible for Catholic Teacher Education in Scotland and its courses develop and promote Catholic teaching in schools across the country. Dr Roisín Coll, Director of the Foundation, said: "We are delighted to be teaching this course here in Edinburgh and continuing our work to ensure that there are appropriately qualified teachers for our schools. The hospitality and support from the Archdiocese has been wonderful."

Eileen Rafferty, RE advisor for Schools in the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh, said: “This is the first time the Catholic Teaching Certificate via the Setting Out on the Road course has been delivered in Edinburgh.

“It equips those taking part to teach and explain the Catholic faith. We now look forward to a continuation of this fruitful partnership in years to come.”

Megan McGhee, a teacher at St Andrew’s Primary in Dundee, agreed, saying: “Children can often come up with bizarre questions, so today we’ve been learning about the Word of God and how to portray and explain this to them."

Paul Flanigan, a teacher at St Parick’s Primary in Denny, agreed saying: “The questions can also be quite deep so it’s important to be equipped with an understanding to give the right answers.”

Ellen McBride, Honorary Teaching Fellow of the University of Glasgow, said: “This group are enthusiastic and willing to learn. We need people like that - who know their faith and who are confident and willing to share it.”

This Saturday: come to our music day!

How important is music to Mass?

"It's a really a crucial aspect of the liturgy," says Michael Ferguson, Director of Music at St Mary's Catholic Cathedral in Edinburgh. "It add to the holiness of Mass and the majesty of the liturgy."

That's why he's joining James Greechan, Director of Music at St Patrick's, Kilsyth, to host this special free event. It's for anyone who contributes (or wants to contribute) music to Mass, either by singing, leading a choir or playing an instrument.

James, a student of music, said: "It's a gorgeous way of praying, to help our fellow parishioners to grow in holiness through the music that we play. It's great joy to do as well.

"This day is to give them the sense that they are not alone, that there's help and that great things can be achieved in a parish.

Michael added: "The day is open to everybody, whether or not you're actively involved in music.

Both men will be giving advice on how to improve your music offering while you can share your own tips on what works in your parish. Book your place now at eventbrite by clicking here.

Living Church Music, 10:30am - 3:00pm, Saturday 14 September, Gillis Centre, 100 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh, EH9 1BB.



Altar servers invited for day of training, games and testimonials

Altar boys and girls can look forward to games and activities at a free annual training event this month.

Servers from across the Archdiocese of St Andrews & Edinburgh are being invited to the Altar Servers’ Day at the Gillis Centre in Edinburgh.

Fr Daniel Doherty, who is organising the event, said: “Altar servers play an important role in parishes and are valued by priests and church communities for their role at Mass.

“This is a chance for the Archdiocese to say thanks while giving them some extra training in a fun and relaxed atmosphere.”

Servers should bring a packed lunch, comfortable clothes and the robes they normally wear at Mass. Parishes are responsible for completing parental consent forms, available from parish priests.

The day will conclude with Mass, during which Archbishop Leo Cushley will present medals for those participating in the Guild of St Cuthbert.

To sign up, search ‘Altar Servers Day’ at evenbrite.co.uk or call 0131 623 8900.

Day for Altar Servers, Saturday 21st September, 10:30am-3pm, Gillis Centre, 10 Strathearn Road, Edinburgh.