This Week's Newsletter
Publishedon Wednesday 24th March 2021
A FEW WORDS FROM FR JOE……….
Carrying the coffin of my uncle John from the hearse to his grave on Tuesday felt like the end of an era. He was 87, a wonderful man, bursting with energy and full of love and goodness. He was the last of the four Curran brothers to die, and four of his five sisters, my mother among them, have gone before him, leaving just one of the nine behind. I felt so sad for Aunty Barbara, now a frail older woman who has stood at the open graves of both her parents and all her siblings. “I’d like to go quietly when my time comes” she whispered to me as we walked back to the car, a quiet humble woman, she wouldn’t care for all the drama that he generated!
It’s been four years since the last family funeral and I’d forgotten the emotional roller coaster that the days after death bring us on. I was sad for uncle John, but to be honest his light was dimming in the few years since his beloved wife died. A picture on the Mass leaflet, probably taken at a wedding a few years ago, showed them together, finely dressed, beaming and beautiful, a memory of better days. Meeting his children, my cousins, was tearful and sad, they had done so much to make his final years and days comfortable and uplifting. Now they face life without either of their parents, they will learn to lean even more on each other. The wider family turned out in good numbers and it was such a relief to be able to have a couple of hundred people in the church for the Mass, there was even a small choir.
Listening to many anecdotes about his life was fascinating. As always you have one perspective on a relative, but his work colleagues, sporting pals, the other members of the chorus of the Belfast Opera, have all sorts of stories, everyone infused with admiration, appreciation and affection.
Every one of the nine siblings were people of faith, strong Catholics, active in the church and committed to all kinds of charitable works here and abroad. John read at Mass on Tuesdays when his name was on the rota, he believed in the Word that he proclaimed and held himself to the high standards that the followers of Jesus are called to. He had deep pockets and was extraordinarily generous. The Gospel chosen for his requiem was The Last Judgement, appropriate for a man who sat on the bench and administered justice, surely he will be found among the sheep, among those he helped, fed, clothed, visited and gave shelter to.
All of this affirms the place of faith and religious practice in our lives, hearing the Word and actively seeking to love God and our neighbour, can and does lead to a full and active life. We are all so grateful for the witness and example of his generation and all they have taught us.
Thank you for your generous support of the Crosscare annual appeal which replaced the Share collection last weekend. The total amount realised was €1235.
Safeguarding Sunday 2021
We are all indebted to the Safe Guarding Representatives in the parish and to each other for following the diocesan policies and making our parish as safe as possible for children and vulnerable adults. As we come back together again for Mass and parish activities please renew your commitment to these standards and encourage others to do the same.
The Archbishop’s letter on Safeguarding is available at the church and it is available to download below. It is well worth reading!
Archbishop Farrell’s Pastoral Letter: The Cry of the Earth—The Cry of the Poor
At this time every person on our planet is confronted with two interconnected crises: the coronavirus pandemic and the ecological crisis. Both define our age. Both require urgent action. But it is the reality of climate change that is ‘humanity’s defining challenge.’ Over the coming decades, the havoc of the pandemic will pale when compared to that of climate change.
To respond to the climate crisis, and to mark the Season of Creation—which began on September 1st and continues until the Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi on October 4th—Archbishop Farrell has published a pastoral letter, The Cry of the Earth—The Cry of the Poor: the Climate Catastrophe—Creation’s Urgent Call for Change. This pastoral is an invitation to all people—those in the Church and those beyond—to reflect on the climate crisis in new ways, so that the baptised may live the life of faith more vibrantly, and everyone may respond more actively to the serious situation in which the world finds itself. The pastoral letter is available on online, as well as in hardcopy from Veritas.
PRAYING FOR VOCATIONS
Archbishop Farrell is asking for people and priests to pray for vocations to the Priesthood and Religious Life on a regular basis. As you are well aware, the need is great, so let’s answer God’s call and “Pray the Lord of the harvest to send labourers into his harvest”
NEW VOCATIONS TEAM FOR THE PRIESTHOOD IN DUBLIN
Archbishop Dermot Farrell has appointed a New Team for Vocations to the Priesthood for the Archdiocese of Dublin. Fr. Séamus McEntee is now the new Director of Vocation to the Priesthood with Fr. Bill O'Shaughnessy as the new Assistant Vocations Director. Fr. Séamus has assisted on the vocations team for the past seven years and is delighted to be working alongside Fr. Bill in this exciting role of assisting men discern their call to priesthood as well as vocations promotion. Let us pray that God will continue to call enthusiastic men to the priesthood for our Archdiocese. If you know of anyone who thinks they might have a vocation to be a priest or is interested in finding out more about being a priest for the Archdiocese of Dublin, please ask them to contact either Fr. Séamus or Fr. Bill on the Vocations Team at: firstname.lastname@example.org or check out: Vocations | Archdiocese of Dublin (dublindiocese.ie)
PATHWAYS: EXPLORING FAITH AS AN ADULT
Pathways is a two-year, one evening a week, Adult Faith Development course on Thursday evenings. Run by the Archdiocese of Dublin in DCU St. Patrick’s Campus (MDCCE), Drumcondra Road. Late September to May (7.00 p.m. – 9.30 p.m) Application now open for September 2021. Early application advised. Contact: Pathways Director, Eileen Houlahan at 01 8087594 or email@example.com. Web: www.evangelisation.ie See flyer below for more information.