The Bishop Writes
Writing in October, Christmas seems a long way off. Soon, however, the sense of expectation and the frenzy of activity that we associate with the Festive Season will be upon us. Already many of the shops have their Christmas merchandise tastefully displayed.
I don’t need to remind you, there will be many preparations to be made as Christmas Day approaches. Perhaps I do need to remind you that Christmas is a Christian Festival.
How easy it is to get so caught up in the trappings of Christmas that we forget its true meaning. The lead-up is such a busy time, such an expensive time; buying presents, writing cards, attending events – so much to arrange and to do that many people are glad when its over. But it shouldn’t be like this – and we must not allow the rush and hassle to push out of our hearts and minds the things that really belong to Christmas. That is the purpose of Advent, which begins this year on Sunday 1st December.
Christmas is celebrated because something happened that changed the course of history. The Creator God came down in His Son to the ‘little things’ of this world. Christmas then is proof that there are no depths of my life, and of yours, to which He is not familiar. He knows the frailty and failings of human beings. But He also knows our strengths and what it is to serve and sacrifice on behalf of others.
This is the true meaning and joy of Christmas. That there is one who cares enough to save us and all the world from destroying ourselves and yes, is able to save us: “As many as receive Him, to them gave He power to become Sons of God.”
How important that we don’t lose sight of what it’s all about. With so many bad news stories we all need to hear and know this ‘Good News.’
To all our clergy and parishioners around the Diocese, to those who will worship with us in our churches this Christmas and to anyone who has the opportunity to pick up this edition of Tidings for a quiet read, I wish you a very happy and blessed Christmas.
I don’t know about ‘Deck the halls’, the shops are ‘decked’ full with Christmas gifts and goodies, shop speakers blare out canned carols, ‘tis the season to be jolly’ don’t you know? How can you feel jolly, when dark cold nights have arrived, money is scarce, ‘wish lists’ are long, and the diary is bulging at the seams? Time to stop, time to pause, time to listen, time to reconnect to God and His love and what Christmas or rather WHO Christmas is about, and remember everything we do is in celebration of Him. When we think of Him, give thanks for Him, and are filled with His Love, that truly is worth being jolly about, truly the Greatest gift of all, which will outlast any and all others.
Speaking of lasting love, we send congratulations and every blessing to Wendy Sherlock and Adrian, recently married in Tubbercurry, we hope that they will be very happy.
The harvest of happiness comes in many forms, not least when reminded of what Harvest is about, thanking God for his gifts and looking after others, by both Dean Arfon Williams and the Bishop in their respective sermons and the children’s part in Tubbercurry’s service, particularly one child who ran eagerly up the church, when it came to her turn! Smiles all around then and at the supper that followed in Tubbercurry, where the Bishop and family were able to join us for a time. Once the sumptuous hot buffet was finished, tables were cleared and Henry Gawley got toes a tapping and the floor a jumping with dancing feet!
Wellied feet and waterproofs donned, the hardy folks of all ages, set out in teams to follow clues and win the coveted treasure, in Rathbarron’s annual treasure hunt walk, organised by Tom and Hazel. Enthusiasm, dedication and a little craziness ensured even a couple of downpours didn’t deter or dampen spirits in pursuit of a prize. The sight and smells of bangers, burgers, hot tea and cupcakes galore, were reward enough, but Shirley and her team proved to be the overall winners. For all who braved the elements: better luck next year, and better weather, hopefully!
We hoped people would come to Tubbercurry’s Social on 26 September in Cawley’s, dancing once more to Henry Gawley and his partner, forming the group Unity, and people didn’t disappoint, nor were they disappointed with the great music, a veritable feast of food, and pleasant surroundings. What could be better? Nothing! And we can’t wait for the next – watch this space.
If you can’t wait for the next social to hear Henry again, try the concert in Rathbarron on 6 December at 8pm starring Sligo Gospel Choir and other local talent, including members of the congregation. Mince pies and mulled wine will follow and donations welcome for the church. Donations of recycled clothes will be welcomed in aid of Tubbercurry, mid November, a chance to make wardrobe room and a good excuse for some retail therapy! We do what we can!!
Doing is what Mothers’ Union have been up to – first there was the Diocesan Coffee Evening, not well attended but enjoyable and profitable, next was the inspirational opening service with ‘buzzing’ planning session, then some ‘hands on’ activity in putting together the collected items for the 22 shoeboxes, an opportunity to make a child happy at Christmas.
Rewards, something different and a possible recruitment drive in Claire Goulden’s evening, when she enlightened us all about style ‘do’s and don’ts’, a great night and we hope more fun at our Christmas dinner in December – phew!
GFS & BB’s have been equally busy, see their separate report, and Sunday School too, the Advent travelling Crib set, visiting homes, telling the story of Christmas, finishing with the Crib Service, Tubbercurry, Christmas Eve at 4pm.
Designing the Parish Christmas Card, practising nativity plays for Carol Service in Tubbercurry on December 22nd at 7pm, and eagerly awaiting ‘Santa Reindeer and Elves Christmas’ party, 14 December from 2pm, with games, crafts, cooking AND Santa!
Other Christmas Services: Rathbarron’s Carol Service, 20 December at 8pm,
Midnight Communion, 24 December at 11.30pm,
Christmas Day at 10am (Rathbarron) and 11.30am (Tubbercurry).
Wishing all Tidings’ Readers a happy and blessed Christmas
There has been talk in the Dublin Synod, in the Irish Times and elsewhere, that our Church of Ireland can be a cold house for Anglican and other immigrants to Ireland, and for Irish people brave enough to join us from other denominations for common prayer and common life. Cases ‘for’ and ‘against’ are cited. The poem below, as if from God in school inspector mode, is apt:
Possible Answers to Prayer
Your petitions —though they continue to bear
just the one signature —have been duly recorded.
Your anxieties —despite their constant,
relatively narrow scope and inadvertent
entertainment value — nonetheless serve
to bring your person vividly to mind.
Your repentance — all but obscured beneath
a burgeoning, yellow fog of frankly more
conspicuous resentment — is sufficient.
Your intermittent concern for the sick,
the suffering, the needy poor is sometimes
recognizable to me, if not to them.
Your angers, your zeal, your lipsmackingly
righteous indignation toward the many
whose habits and sympathies offend you —
these must burn away before you’ll apprehend
how near I am, with what fervour I adore
precisely these, the several who rouse your passion.
Scott Cairns, Compass of Affection (Brewster, Massachusetts:
Paraclete Press, 2006), p. 91.
Little Oscar Kilroy was pictured in the last issue at his baptism, aged two weeks. A tumour was found on his windpipe. He has coped well with chemo and has just had the tumour removed in a five hour operation. Keep praying, please.
Parishioners Bernie Murray and Lil Hall died since our last issue. As have beloved sibs of several parishioners in other parts of Ireland and Britain. We give thanks for them all and commend them, and their families, to God.
Our third Taizé service in Dugort recently passed a turningpoint. Several of us, new to the format, had been a bit preoccupied by the format at first. But suddenly it has become unobtrusive, enabling deep prayer and communion. That this is so for those already involved will make it easier for those who join us. We are encouraged and grateful.
Dec 07 Holy Trinity Social + Restoration Fundraiser in Wyatt
Hotel Westport, 9pm. Octagon Quartet. Tickets €10
from Steve Brickenden and Rectory. Raffle on the night.
Dec 15 The Church of Ireland: an Illustrated History. €35, or
€25 if paid through diocesan sec. Heather Sherlock,
Stonehall House, Ballisodare, Co Sligo by Dec 15. A
large-format book of 400+ pages, the work of over 60
historians and photographers.
Dec 16 Castlebar Christ Church Carols 8pm
Dec 20 Dugort St Thomas’s Carols 8pm
Dec 22 W estport Carols: Holy Trinity 11.30am, 5pm St Mary’s
Dec 24 Christmas Eve: Turlough 6.30pm, HT 8.00pm
Dec 25 Christmas Day: Castlebar 10.00am, HT 11.30am.
Dec 29 3pm, St Thomas’s Dugort: Baptism of Kerrie and
Mossie Murphy’s bab, Florence and, if a certain dear
godmother is available, of Linda and Paul Kilkelly’s little
Matilda. Kerrie and Linda are sisters, née Turner.
With every encouragement in walking Christ’s way, and in sharing the hope and love that are in you: Val R
It seems only a few weeks ago that we celebrated Harvest,thanking God for his bounty and provision. We now turn to Advent, an often overlooked season in the church’s calendar. It is one that I believe we need to recover, a time for preparation and reflection for the arrival of Jesus with an eye on the future for the return of Jesus. Here are a few words from the age-old Advent hymn:
Oh, come, oh, come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to you, O Israel!
It anticipates the arrival of Jesus that first Christmas. The long awaited anticipated messiah, the one anointed by God to bring the people back to God. A present if you will but more than the tokens that we exchange, this is a gift of hope, forgiveness and restoration. Quite a message and one that is too often lost in the tinsel and turkey. So again a very good reason for the season of Advent to prepare for Christmas and to keep the baby in Christmas as he needs to be. The hymn concludes with hope and joy, what better way to look forward to Christmas.
Oh, bid our sad divisions cease,
And be yourself our King of Peace.
And finally concludes
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel’
Shall come to you, O Israel!
Rev Adam Pullen Rector
Some news from around the group: May I begin by expressing my sympathies and prayers with the family and friends on the death of Iris Shannon née Browne, who passed away after a sudden illness. Iris, whose funeral and burial was at Holy Trinity Ballisodare, was wife of Jim, mother to Jason and Nadine and sister of Mary.
Our continued prayers for the health and healing of Mrs Carroll and Ivan Craig.
Congratulations to Ronnie Gillanders on his walk on The Great Wall of China in aid of the Parkinsons Society.
Congratulations also to Jill (née Gilmore Hewitt) and Sean on their marriage in Emlaghfad Ballymote.
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY
6 Dec. Carol Singing (to be confirmed) Singers from the all the churches singing carols in Ballisodare & Collooney, collecting for charity
7 Dec. Messy Christmas, All ages, all family Christmas event Teeling Centre, 2:30-4:30pm
8 Dec. St Paul’s Collooney, Carol Service, 7pm
15 Dec. Holy Trinity Ballisodare, Carol Service 10:30am St Paul’s School Collooney, Christmas Nativity Service
15 Dec. Carol Service Ballymote, Immaculate Conception 8pm
24 Dec. Christmas Eve, Holy Communion 11:30pm Holy Trinity Ballisodare
25 Dec. Christmas Day, St Paul’s Collooney, Holy Communion, 9:30am
Holy Trinity Ballisodare, Holy Communion 10:45am
Ballymote Holy Communion Midday
29 Dec. Holy Trinity Ballisodare, United Service, 10:30am
As our rector moves into the third month of his sabbatical, we
continue to pray that Gary and Caitriona will be refreshed in
the weeks ahead, as we look forward to welcoming them back
on December 5th – just in time for the Christmas Fayre! We
are deeply indebted to Dean Alistair Grimason and Canon
Maureen Ryan, who have done so much to ensure the smooth
running of our parishes in Gary’s absence. As curate, may I wish
you all every blessing for the coming Advent season, as we watch
and wait for the light of Christ to break afresh into our lives.
Baptisms: David Matthew Valkenau, son of Ivan and
Ann, was baptised in St Nicholas’ on September 8th; and
Savannah Summer Hanley, daughter of Alan and Kathleen,
was baptised there on November 3rd.
Harvest: Many thanks go to all who made our services
of Harvest Thanksgiving so joyful and colourful on October
6th. Special thanks to all who decorated the churches, to our
preacher Dr Paddy Delaney, and to the young readers who
were such a credit to the parish school.
A Season of Remembrance: On October 5th,
University Hospital Galway hosted the third annual ecumenical
remembrance service for those who have died in Galway’s
hospitals. Mary-Anne Wangari organised a special Kenyan
Service on October 27th, as St Nicholas’ joined with the Kenyan
community in remembering those who died in the attacks on
the Westgate Shopping Centre in Nairobi. The new Parish
Priest of St Augustine’s, Father John Hughes, helped to lead the
annual Service of Remembrance for the Faithful Departed in
St Nicholas’ on November 2nd. Galway Cathedral hosted an
ecumenical service for the Irish Cancer Society on November
9th. Kilcummin and St Nicholas’ held annual Remembrance
Day services on November 10th. St Nicholas’ Singers will lead
a special Rembrancetide Concert with poetry readings at 5pm
in St Nicholas’ on November 17th. The Glenard Residents
Association will hold their annual ecumenical service of
remembrance on Nov 28th at 8pm in Aras Bóthar na Trá.
Choirs: We welcomed new Choristers to the Schola
Cantorum at their first Eucharist of the season on October
20th. Similarly swelled by new enrolment, the Choral
Scholars followed up their first Eucharist on November 3rd
with a series of Complines at 9pm on November 7th, 14th
and 21st. The Parish Choir led Evensong for Michelmas on
September 29th and a special Evensong for NUIG students
on October 23rd.
Upcoming Events :
The Civic Carol Service is on December 22nd at 4pm.
The Kilcummin Carol Service takes place on Monday 23rd December at 8pm.
Christmas Eve will be marked in St Nicholas’ by Carols around the
Christmas Tree at 4pm and a Christmas Eve Eucharist at 11.30pm.
Christmas Day services will be at 11am in Kilcummin and St Nicholas’.
At the request of the local community as part of the week of
festivities in Ballycastle, the Church of St. John’s was festooned
with bouquets and displays of flowers on the first Sunday
in August this year. More than 200 people passed through
the doors of the church in two days, a great success by any
standards. The flower-fest was concluded with a short service,
extolling the theme of God’s creation. The two pictures offered
to the editorial staff of the Tidings show the communion table
bedecked with sunflowers, God’s gift to the deep fat fryer; and
the second shows a lady catching two minutes peace among
God’s Eden in the west. Congratulations to all those who
made the day possible.
I would like to add my voice to those who welcome with
open arms the Revd’s Stan Evans and Jacob (Jake) Worley
to the Diocese. There is no doubt that there are challenging
times ahead, not only in the Church of Ireland but in the
Christian church as a whole, and their gifts and insights will
be welcomed. Lest I forget, I would also like to congratulate
Rev’d Andrea Wills on her new appointment as Priest-incharge
of the Parish of Foxford.
The three Roman Catholic schools of the Killala area; Cooneel,
Killala and Templemary together with Newtownwhite
Primary School each Christmas gather together for a carol
service. The service rotates in each of their respective churches
and this year it is the turn of St. Patrick’s Cathedral to welcome
the 100 to 200 enthusiastic, vocally voluble school children
with their accompanying teachers, parents and guardians. It
is one of the times in the year when my heart skips a beat
at the enthusiasm and fervour of the children as they sing
and pray and welcome the Baby Jesus into the mayhem we
call Christmas. This year the school’s carol service happens on
Friday 13th (no jokes please) and you are most welcome to
come and join-in in the fun.
Speaking of carol services, the Killala Union parish Carol
Services are as follows:
St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Sunday 15th at 8pm;
St. Mary’s Church Crossmolina at 8pm on Friday 20th
St. John’s Church Ballycastle on Sunday 22nd at 8pm.
Services for Christmas:
Tuesday 24th with the Christmas Eve Service at 10pm in St. Patrick’s Cathedral.
Christmas Day Services are as follows.
Holy Communion at 9am in St. John’s, Ballycastle
Holy Communion in St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Killala at 10:30am
Holy Communion in St. Mary’s, Crossmolina at noon
In finishing, may I wish you a very happy and Christ-filled Christmastide, and a prosperous and recession-free 2014.
Till we talk again, keep the faith, Canon Neal.
Our new Rector :
We all welcome Rev Jake Worley, his wife, Kelly, and children
Asher, Elias and Elithia, to the West of Ireland and to our Union
of parishes. We pray and hope that they will be happy living here
and we look forward to working with them.
In September we welcomed Amelia Rolston into the family of
God, the Church and the Community in Kilglass Church. Her
parents, Edel and Clarence, along with her godparents, made
their promises to bring this little baby up as a Christian, by
example and teaching. Then in October, her 1st cousin, and one
day younger, Hayden Rolston, son of Randolph and Beatrice,
was also baptised by Canon Doris at the morning service.
Parents, godparents and the congregation made the same
promises. It was good to have the oldest Kilglass parishioner,
Madeleine Close, in her 80s, present, and to remember her and
her twin sister, Maude’s, baptisms in our prayers. Unfortunately,
Maude was unable to attend as she is ill at home.
Ryan Hugh Bradley, from Belfast, was received and welcomed
by Canon Doris, into Killanley Church and the Church of
Ireland community at a special service in September.
Ryan’s grandmother, Louise, née Anderson, hails from Killlanley and
is a frequent visitor from Belfast. As this was also the Harvest
Thanksgiving, it was good to give thanks for all God’s gifts to us,
including food, families and children.
Mothers ’ Union:
The new season opened for our Branch with a HC service
conducted by Rev. Andrea Wills. It was good to see so many
present for this. Then, in October, Canon Doris gave a
Powerpoint presentation on the present MU themes, ‘The
Seeds we Sow 2013’, and ‘Sowing the Future together 2014’.
Using a video about the Church and MU in Burundi, our Link
Diocese, information about our Diocesan Church Project,
MabWeNi, and information from the International Anglican
Womens’ Network, of which she is the Irish link, she aptly
demonstrated how each member is already ‘sowing seeds’. In
November, we look forward to seeing slides and hearing about
Rev Andrea’s visit to the war graves in France, followed by a
short service of remembrance.
The people came and were thankful for all God’s goodness to us
in this harvest season. The churches were tastefully decorated,
the singing superb and the fellowship much appreciated. Thanks
are offered to all who provided the flowers, fruit, vegetables, time
and expertise to decorate our churches so beautifully. Also to all
our guest preachers who provided the food for our souls and to
the bakers who provided so well for our bodies!!
It was good to hear St. Anne’s Church, Easky, named as the
participating Church of Ireland Church for October, on MidWest
Radio. Although recorded in the studio in Ballyhaunis, it almost
seemed as if it was live with Canon Doris conducting the service
and preaching and Canon Aean Ferguson, a parishioner, reading
the lessons and taking part.
Revd. Andrea Wills Writes:
October was a busy month in Foxford Church. On Friday
4th a Service of Introduction was held where Bishop Patrick
introduced me as priest in charge of the parish with special
responsibility for the monthly service in Claremorris. I
really appreciated that so many people came to support me
on that night and especially to Denzil Auchmuty for reading
the Old Testament lesson. He always encouraged me. It was
a joy for me that Fr. Padraig Costello P.P. in Foxford read
the second lesson. Dean Tom Gordon who lectured me in
Theological College, now Institute, and who was a great
help to me, preached. Thank you to everyone who helped
with the tea afterwards in the Admiral Brown Hall.
On Sunday 13th October James Kilbane performed a
concert of spiritual music. This was a very special evening
and was well supported. It was also a success financially.
Thank you to all who sold tickets and helped.
Harvest Thanksgiving Service was held on 20th October.
We are grateful to our neighbours and friends and members
of other parishes for supporting us and helping to swell our
congregation. The church looked beautiful and I didn’t lift
On 25th October Rev. Jake was instituted as Rector
of Kilmoremoy Union. A wonderful evening with such
goodwill and support in evidence. Our love and prayers are
with him and Kelly and the family as they settle into the
Rectory in Ballina.
We look forward to Bishop Patrick’s visit to Foxford on
Sunday 10th November. After the service at 10.00 a.m. he
will visit the Blackrocks Nursing Home and join us for a
parish lunch in the Mayfly Hotel.
Carol Service: Our ecumenical Carol Service will be held
on Sunday 22nd December at 5.00 p.m.
Christmas Day: Holy Communion 10.00 a.m.
Message from Revd Stan
Rosemary and I thank not only the people of this parish
but all throughout the Diocese for the wonderful welcome
you have given us. Our move has been made so easy as we
have been carried along on such a wave of love and support.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a
Happy, Peaceful and Holy Christmas.
News from the parish
Moyard will close for the winter months with the last service
of 2013 being on Sunday 17th November at 10.00am.
Errislannon – delighted to report that a new lease has been
agreed and is being finalized with the RCB securing the
future of this very special church.
Roundstone hosted the annual Harvest Thanksgiving service
on 29th September and the church was looking magnificent with
a good number of visitors making a huge effort to be with us.
The work on the tower is now well advanced and we look
forward to our Advent and Christmas services, with this year a
special candle-lit Christingle service on Dec. 29th at 4.00pm.
Christ Church, Clifden – the Working Group of the Christ
Church Development Project have been working hard to
move the agenda forward on what will be an exciting reordering
initiative. This will see this wonderful church being
sensitively developed to bring the very best to its liturgies whilst
also being flexible to accommodate the many community
activities from the wider community. The church is a focal
point for numerous events through the year, especially during
the Clifden Arts Festival, and with an increasing number of
visitors accessing Clifden, the church needs to be equipped to
further its welcoming ministry over the coming years.
The fundraising group in the parish is organizing two
special events over the coming weeks:
Thursday 28th November in the Station House Hotel at
7.30pm sees the annual charity auction. Proceeds will be
shared between Christ Church, Clifden Sheltered Housing, and
St Vincent de Paul. Admission is €10 to include finger food.
Saturday 28th December – Christmas Crunch:
12.30pm –2.30pm in Christ Church for a post-Christmas
get together. Tickets €15 – definitely not turkey curry,
sandwiches or soup!
Dec. 19 – 7.30pm – Christ Church – Christingle Service
Dec. 22 – Roundstone – Holy Communion 10.00am
Dec. 22 – Christ Church – 11.30am – Holy Communion
Dec. 24 – Christ Church – 11.30pm – Holy Eucharist
Dec. 25 – 10.00am Roundstone – Christmas Eucharist
Dec. 25 – 11.30am – Christ Church – Christmas Eucharist
Dec. 29 – 11.30am – Christ Church – Holy Communion
Dec. 29 – 4.00pm – Roundstone – Christingle service
Connecting Connemara – First Anniversary
Connecting Connemara celebrates its first birthday with a
presentation by Chris Shanahan – President of Connemara’s
Chamber of Commerce on Wednesday 13th November.
Connecting Connemara was created to bring businesses, of
all types, together to encourage and motivate them to share
knowledge, network and create a positive direction that benefits
everyone in Connemara whether resident here or a visitor. It is
a forum where people support each other, and thankfully one
outcome for Christ Church is that Revd Stan has been offered
support to build a web page for Omey which will keep people
well informed of services and happenings in our churches.
The meetings for CC are every two weeks on a Wednesday
morning for breakfast at 8.00am in the Atlantic Coast
Hotel, Clifden – with the meeting starting at 9.00am with a
guarantee of finishing by 10.00am so that everyone can get
on with their day. Cost is €15 including a super breakfast.
Everyone is welcome.
The Harvest Thanksgiving Services and Halloween are just
finished so naturally I’m writing notes for Christmas. Thank
you to everyone who has contributed to our Harvest season,
Canons Trimby, Bourke and Swann as well as those who
provided music and decorated the churches. It was a year of
great challenge when the spring seemed forever stuck in winter
and fodder was scarce and we all held our breath as gloom and
despair spread through the farming community. Then we were
blessed with that most rare thing in Ireland, a good, no a great
summer; “Praise to the Lord, the almighty, the King of creation!”
Terrible tragedy was visited upon the home of Peter and Martina
Johnston when their beloved daughter Chloe died on Friday
27th September 2013 just weeks before her fifth birthday.
Chloe had health issues all her short life but the swiftness of her
passing has left all of us numbed and in a state of deep shock.
Words are inadequate and platitudes unwelcome but the tender
compassion shown by so many people from near and far spoke
volumes in a handshake or hug. United in the love of Christ let
us carry each other’s burdens a and so fulfil his call to care for the
shattered and desolate.
It was my privilege to assist at the wedding of Kim and Linda
Williams in Mullingar on Friday 4th October 2013. It was a
most joyous occasion and we congratulate them at the beginning
of this new chapter in their lives. On a personal note I wish to
thank Linda’s rector for including me in the service in a most
beautiful and unusual church.
Equally joyous was the baptism of Cathal Joseph Casey in St
Mary’s Kilmacshalgan on Sunday 8th September 2013. Cathal
was on his very best behaviour on this his special day as we
recognised his place in God’s grace and love.
Advent is upon us as we anticipate the celebration of
the Incarnation of our Lord, it is a time of spiritual reflection
and, dare I say it, abstinence. Not many of us will manage the
latter but let us take time to prepare our hearts as we prepare for
our festivities. Our carol services will be as follows:
Sunday 15th December at 8:00pm: St Mary’s Kilmacshalgan
Friday 20th December at 8:00pm Skreen
Sunday 22nd December at 8:00pm Christ Church Dromard
Christmas tree party time and date to be confirmed.
Christmas Day Services:
Kilmacshalgan 8.30am HC
Dromard 10.00am HC
Skreen 11.15am HC
Skreen New Year Dance
The fine details need to be ironed out but the time and place is
self evident, Skreen Community Centre New Year’s Eve. See in
2014 with music, dancing, raffles, supper and prizes. Listen out
for announcements in church and in bulletins.
Our Services of Harvest Thanksgiving were held in Tuam and
Cong at the end of September and both were well attended.
Our thanks go to our preachers, Paddy Delaney and Canon
Kathy Trimby. Thanks are also due to all those who cleaned
and decorated the churches and provided the tea afterwards.
TKA Synod was held in the Cathedral again this year. All
went superbly smoothly through the unceasing and willing
efforts of the cathedral family. The Dean would like to record
his emphatic thanks to all involved. They are, in his books,
‘Simply the Best’! So much so, in fact, that TKA was voted
by the visiting stall-holders as providing ‘The Best Synod
Lunch in the C of I’.
A magnificent effort this. Organised and run by Venetia,
Mary and Sorcha, our Cong Parish Quiz, held in Lydons
Lodge on 11th October, was a real fun evening and raised
almost €700. It also almost wrecked the Dean’s vocal chords!
Microphone, please ladies, for the next time or the service
the following Sunday will be done in sign language.
It was with great sadness that the parishioners of Cong learned
of the death of Catherine Fitzpatrick, mother of our People’s
Churchwarden Robert Williams. Catherine’s funeral was
held in St Mary’s on 16th October. We extend our prayerful
condolences to Robert, his brother Terry, Catherine’s grandson
Bobby and to all the family and friends.
We also extend our sympathy to Jarlath Canney of Tuam
whose brother died in London in mid October.
Our best wishes go to Carrie and Christopher Penny of Long
Island, NYC whose wedding blessing was held in Cong on
Prayers for a speedy recovery go to Margaret Paxton of Tuam
and Mary Gandy of Cong.
The Institution of Revd Jake Worley took place in St
Michael’s, Ballina at the end of October. We welcome Jake
and his family to the household of TKA.
20th December, Ecumenical Carols, Aasleagh, 7.30pm
22nd December, Tuam Carols, St Mary’s Cathedral, 12 noon
22nd December, Cong Carols, St Mary’s Church, 4.00pm
25th December, Cong Christmas HC, 10.00am
25th December, Tuam Christmas HC, 12 noon
6th January, Epiphany HC, Tuam, 7.30pm (Followed by Epiphany Supper)
BISHOP ROOKE WRITES
Memories of Summer 2013 are already beginning to fade. The onset of Autumn is well and truly upon us. Diocesan and parish life are back in full swing and the harvest, a good one this year, is safely gathered in. The seasons come and go; such it has ever been.
Comings and goings are part and parcel of life for us all. In July we said a very sad farewell to one who had served our united Dioceses with loyalty and dedication for more than twenty years. Over that time, Ben Bradish, with the minimum of fuss, had taken charge of and guided our diocesan finances. We had come to rely on his considerable accountancy expertise and knowledge. As he had lived so he died – quietly and peacefully, surrounded by Maria and the family. Our loss is as nothing to theirs and we extend our deepest and heartfelt sympathy to them all.
The Summer months heralded the arrival of two new clergy to the Diocese. The Reverend Stan Evans was appointed to take charge of the Omey Group and he and his wife Rosemary have taken up residence in the Rectory at Clifden; Stan was installed on Friday 20th September. They come among us from Limerick and Killaloe Diocese where Stan, a banker by profession, has been an accomplished and enthusiastic pastor, most recently in the Killaloe Cathedral Group. We extend a warm welcome to Mr and Mrs Evans and wish them many years of contentment and fulfilled ministry in Connemara.
The Reverend Jacob (Jake) Worley, from New Mexico who has been serving in British Columbia, Canada has been appointed Incumbent of the Kilmoremoy Union. He and his wife Kelly and three of their five children are currently preparing to make the journey across the Atlantic in good time for Jake’s institution in Ballina on Friday 25th October. This is a major undertaking for the Worley family and we look forward to having them among us. They will no doubt receive a hearty welcome from the various congregations within the Kilmoremoy Union and from the wider community. We trust that they will be happy among us.
I am delighted that the Reverend Andrea Wills has agreed to take charge of Straid Parish, Foxford. Her appointment has been warmly welcomed by the parishioners and her many friends in the Foxford area. Andrea’s Service of Installation is on Friday 4th October. Others taking on added responsibilities are the members of our respective Cathedral Chapters – both Chapters are now made up of the same individuals. Special good wishes to the Dean of Tuam, Dean Alistair Grimason who also assumes the duties of Dean of Killala and Achonry.
I trust that in all the comings and goings in your life, however challenging they may seem, you will know the presence of Christ with you.
With all good wishes,
Only a few months ago there was concern about whether there would be a harvest worth celebrating. Fast forward to now, and it’s time to celebrate that all is indeed gathered in, and what a harvest! God is good.
We celebrated the part that animals play in our lives and in creation when we held our annual service of animal blessing, with fabulous ‘live’ music followed by the bring and share picnic, both 2 and 4 legged animals behaved and got along.
But it’s not just the fruit of the earth worth celebrating. Over the last few months some of the parish’s young people have turned 21, Lovell Carroll turned 40, and yet another parishioner, who asked to remain nameless, celebrated another milestone birthday, congratulations to all of them.
Congratulations too to all our young people who recently did well in exams and are about to embark on new adventures, we wish them well and look forward to seeing them from time to time.
Speaking of new adventures, congratulations to those who recently married: Jason Gawley to Kathy Durkan, and Madeleine Henry to Nigel McCutcheon, wishing them well as they journey on through life together.
Beginning his Christian life-journey is Andrew Ashley Patrick Byrd who was recently baptised. We pray that, with the help of his family and the Church family, he will continue according to this beginning.
WE look forward to a new beginning in the Diocese for Revd Stan Evan and Revd Jake Worley who are joining our Diocesan family. We welcome them and their families and hope they will be very happy among us.
Andrea also begins a new chapter in her ministry and we ask for God to bless and enrich both her and Foxford.
Both cathedrals are to see some changes as the Bills of General Synod are implemented, and new canons are to be installed. In effect this means there will be one chapter, even though there are two cathedrals. Congratulations to the new canons. Now the hard work begins.
Speaking of hard work, parishioners have been hard at work over the summer raising much needed funds. First was Rathbarron’s Parish lunch on Father’s Day which saw over 300 people sitting down to a cooked lunch. Food and weather held out and the church was the real winner. The weather wasn’t quite so kind for the Summer Festival in Coolaney but thankfully the cake stall was in the newly refurbished Community Centre and Karen was under a gazebo for her face-painting! A clothes collection to recycle completed the hat trick of fundraising events, with the October sponsored walk still to come and the concert in December. Not to be outdone, Tubbercurry have a Social on 26 October in Cawley’s with music by Henry Gawley and a clothes collection on 16 November, not to mention Harvest.
The Bishop is preaching in Tubbercurry on 29 September at 6.30pm, which will be followed by a hot buffet supper and desert for 10 Euros. There will also be some entertainment. Dean Arfon Williams is preaching at Rathbarron’s Harvest at 8pm on 27 September.
GFS & Boys Brigade will probably be after the harvest. As well as their action packed programmes, they will come together for their service based on ‘All Saints’ on 3 November .
In the parish, Mothers Union will start with their opening service and planning meeting on 30 September in Tubbercurry. BUT please remember that we will host the Diocesan Coffee evening on 21 September from 7pm in the Coach House, Rathbarron. Any and all welcome.
Much done and much to look forward to, til next time…
The Rooke family settled in Breaffy on August 05. On the 8th, 30 women from our mainland parishes welcomed Alison and Suzie at afternoon tea in Breaffy House.
Harvest Thanksgivings: Sep 27, Westport 8pm. Sep 28, Turlough 8pm. Sep 29, Castlebar 10am and Dugort 3pm. We will thank God for the miracle of the world; for our food; and for all else that land and sea provide. We will pray that we and our neighbours will have enough, and commit ourselves to a fair sharing of the world’s goods.
Our preacher in Dugort, Westport and Castlebar is the warm, profound and renowned poet and writer John F Deane. John was born at the crossroads in Bunnacurry. In his book, The Works of Love, he said, ”Turn left when you go out the front gate and you are heading ‘back the island’, towards Keel, Dooagh and Keem Bay. Turn right and you are heading ‘out the island’ towards Cashel and Achill Sound and the mainland. Straight across, the road heads ‘down the island’ towards Bunnacurry church, Dooniver and The Bull’s Mouth, The Valley, Dugort and ultimately round to Keel.” In a recent email he said, “It is an honour and a grace to be trusted to speak at your Harvest Festivals, especially in the towns and island of my young years”. Canon Neal O’Raw preaches in Turlough. We are honoured to have them both.
St Thomas’s: Our inimitable Brian Sheridan died on 23rd June in the love of God and expecting the Resurrection, aged 87.
Thanks to our clergy, readers and parishioners for St Thomas’s Summer Services.
Our second Taizé gathering in St Thomas’s on Sep 11 at 8pm will be an opportunity for refreshment, meditation, prayer, or whatever people call their quiet times with the truth of things and with God. Simple, repetitive phrases of prayer are sung from time to time. There is a reading or two, the Lord’s Prayer, a blessing, and a sign of peace.
Roger Schutz began his work of prayer, reconciliation and healing in the village of Taizé in eastern France after WWII. Aware of this, many who attend pray for peace and the healing of hurts of every kind: personal, communal, ethnic, inter-religious and international.
Christ Church: Trevor and Carmel Ardill, in Toronto last month for the death of Trevor’s brother Allan, had the further shock of the sudden death there of their nephew Ross, who had flown there with Carmel. Ross, in his mid-40’s, leaves a wife and young family in Dublin.
Castlebar, and Christ Church not least, grieved at the killing of the defenceless Blaine brothers during the Summer and at the depth of disfunction in their young attacker.
Turlough: Turlough gave pastoral care to their rector on the Saturday night of a long weekend recently. He had been daft enough to put petrol in his diesel engine.
Patrick Butler and others are meeting with the RTA to press that the proposed road around Turlough Church be a circle, not a noose.
Westport: Congratulations to Sarah Smith + Justin Cullen, married on June 1st; to Ava and Lilli Guthrie and Róisín de Bhaldraithe, confirmed on June 2nd; and to Thomas and Gretta Bourke, who celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary on August 18th.
Holy Trinity hosts three concerts of Westport’s Chamber Music Festival on 7th and 8th Sept. And another on 6th Oct during the Westport Arts Festival.
Masahiko Yahata writes in this year’s Cathair na Mart magazine about Westport’s former Rector, Canon James Hannay, who wrote under the name of George A Birmingham, concerning Hannay’s/ Birmingham’s nationalism, role in the Gaelic League, and efforts to appraise Nationalist and Unionist concerns and enable mutual sympathy between their upholders. Hannay’s efforts didn’t always work out but that didn’t stop him, thank God. The article is at http://geo-birmin.com/index_english.html
School’s back! Blessings on our new children, all our pupils, teachers, parents and board, and on our graduates starting secondary school.
As the summer fades and a new term starts for many, now is a time for looking back and looking forward.
We have had a summer! yippee!
In our group we have also had a good summer. The highlight was in July with help from a team from New Wine Ireland and Willowfield church. We held a summer camp ‘Kingdom Conquerers’ for 50 Children in the Telling Centre in Collooney. I don’t think it is an exaggeration to say that they had a great time and we saw so many children, some we knew and some new to us. A big thank you to the teams, both the visiting team and the home team for all their hard work. Thanks also to John Banks and the people in the Telling Centre for their help, to ‘Tidings’ Jane Stark for the Logo, to Orbicon print, to many others who helped make this possible and a big thank you to Priorities Fund whose grant made all this possible. Here are a couple of comments from happy parents
“Camp has been very enjoyable and well organized. Thank you for providing this for the children of the area. Great way of reaching out to children in the community. Do it again next year.”
“the really loves the camp, they came back everyday saying how great it was!”
I would like to include in these Tidings my sadness at the passing of John Lawson who is missed by Phyils, Alan and Elaine, his mother Muriel and his brother Robert. John had battled with cancer a number of times and it had returned. While it was not easy for him he didn’t complain. He had worked in Denny’s and then in Connaght Gold in the Mart in Ballymote and latterly in head office in Tubbercury. I would pop into him in the General and at home and we would watch my name sake ‘Adam the Farmer’ on his favorite program ‘Country File’. He always loved the farm. John had, for many years, been treasurer of St Paul’s Collooney. Being treasurer is never and an easy job. John devoted himself to it and took his position as treasurer very seriously. Thanks are due to him for many years of faithful service and our continued prayers for the family.
Here are just some of the things that have been happening in our group over the summer. In Ballymote, Caroline Hodgins has started nursing in UCD. Aisling Hodgins has started primary school in St Paul’s Collooney. Congratulations to Marie Davey Nee Maxwell & Lionel Davey on the birth of Jade Davey. Congratulations to Jill Gilmore Hewitt & Sean Murphy on their marriage.
In Collooney we send our condolences to the family Tom Crean from Dromahair who passed away. Our thoughts and prayers are with, Daivd, Sara and Eve. We wish the best to Loraine Craig as she starts nursing in St Angela’s, Darren Bourke as he starts history in UCD, and Craig Devany as he starts Law and Business in Griffith College. And congratulations to Karen Clarke on achieving her Leaving. Also congratulations on the baptism of Dylan Cole newest son of Hilary Cole Nee Barber and Alan Cole.
In Ballisodare, congratulations to Linda Bellew nee Parke and Gerard Bellew on the birth of their son.
For your diaries:
Concert in Emlaghfad Church Ballymote , Friday 20th September, 7:30pm, featuring Sligo Gospel Choir, & Fr James Mc Donnagh and band.
Calling teddies! A teddy Bears picnic for pre-school children, Holy Trinity Hall Ballisodare, 2:30-4:30pm, Saturday 21st September
Holy Trinity, Ballisodare Sunday 8th September 7pm, preacher, Ven Richard Dadswell
Emalghafad Ballymote, Sunday 29th September 7pm, preacher Canon Fr James Finan
St Paul’s Colllooney, Harvest Praise, Sunday 13th September 4pm, preacher Canon Neil O Raw
All that remains for me is to wish you a good new term and a blessed harvest.
The St Nicholas’ Garden Fete took place June 8th on a grand day, entirely, with the usual St. Patrick’s Brass Band (who surpassed themselves) and all the other stalls. We raised nearly €15,000, which is very, very impressive! Thank you everybody.
On June 24th Tony MacMahon launched a CD for Tunes in the Church, the traditional music summer concerts which take place three nights a week during the summer. The CD features musicians from the performances. Attendance this summer was up tremendously on previous years.
School end of Term Service took place on June 26th. We said goodbye to 6th class and gave thanks for the year just passed in a very colourful musical service taken by the young people.
We welcome Rev Helen Freeburn who was ordained June 28th for the Presbyterian/Methodist Church here in Galway. We wish her every blessing for her time in Galway.
A Parish Outing and Teddy Bear’s Picnic in Bridget’s garden, Moycullen, was a great success by all accounts, and the experience is to be repeated!
On 16th August, we had a concert in Kilcummin church by the Contempo Quartet, the proceeds going to the repairs to the tower. This raised over €1,100. A very pleasant evening and a good turnout. A second concert, by Legatos and Fortissimos choirs from Newfoundland, in aid of the same fund was held September 21st. 8pm.
Fr Dick Lyng from the Augustinian parish is moving to Dublin to take up new responsibilities there. He has been a great help, support and friend to me, as well as to my predecessor, and the relationship between the two parish communities stemming from the sharing of our church has been very fruitful. It is a great understatement to say he will be missed.
Finally, the Rector for the time being has been 21 years in the ministry, and has been given the chance to go on Sabbatical for 3 months. I’ve some writing I would like to do, and I’ll be back at the beginning of December. Rev John will be running the show, under the directorship of the Dean of Tuam, who will be officially in charge of the parish, aided and abetted by Canon Maureen Ryan and a host of supporting Diocesan Readers and the like. A cast of thousands!
Deaths: 17th July: Ben Bradish. Ben will be very sorely missed from St Nicholas’, from our Diocese, and from the RCB where he did so much work. Our prayers are with his wife, Maria, and all their family.
July 19th David Thaxter’s funeral was in St Nicholas and the burial at MoycullenChurch. Our prayers are with David’s wife Constance and all the family29th July: Iris Yate, mother of Johanna Tyrrell. The funeral was in St Nicholas’ and the burial was at FurboChurch, where we said goodbye to a very special lady. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a n-anam naofa.
Baptism: 27th July in St Nicholas’, Leyton Colin, son of Sarah and Colin Bane, Athenry.
Marriages: May 18th: Joseph Patterson (Virginia) and Christine Yates (Kansas) in St Nicholas’ 7th June, Donal [‘Dobs’] O’Brian, and Kelly Burow had their civil wedding blessed in St Nicholas in a very colourful service!
We all look forward to the arrival of our new Rector, Rev Jake Worley. He will be instituted (hopefully) on October 25th. Jake will be arriving shortly before that from the other side of the Atlantic. His two oldest are in 3rd Level education so will remain in the US. It will be exciting to have Rev. Jake, his wife and three youngest children in the Rectory!
Baby Lottie Gallagher was baptized and welcomed into the Church Family at morning service in Killanley in June by Canon Doris. English born, her grandmother lives nearby. It was good to see the church almost full to welcome this baby. We look forward to welcoming Ryan Hugh Bradley on September 29th in a service of blessing as he has already been baptized in Belfast. His grandmother, an Anderson, hails from Killanley. Our congratulations to the Gallagher and Anderson families.
A very sad funeral took place in Killanley, in August, when Evans Boland was laid to rest. Rev Andrea Wills organised and conducted the prayers in the house and the service in the church. Canon Doris gave the address and did the committal. Our sympathies and prayers are with the Boland family, especially Richard, Pauline and their sons.
Well done to all our young people who sat examinations in the summer. We wish them well in their chosen paths of study. Best wishes too to all who transferred to Second level or who commenced their education at Primary level. Our 2 Primary schools have re-opened and our prayers are with those who teach in them, or help in any way, to ensure that these schools are the best that any parent could wish for. Unfortunately, we had to say goodbye to Mrs. Geraldine Gavin in Leaffoney NS, in June. Numbers fell from the new required number of 20 for a second teacher and so she was made redundant. She will be greatly missed by all, especially Mrs. Nairn, the Principal.
Wedding: A wonderfully international wedding took place in St. Michael’s Church on Saturday 31st August conducted by Rev. Andrea. Riona Nicholls from Northern Ireland married Nikolaus Grubeck from Austria. Riona works in the British Embassy in Kabul and Nik is a barrister in London.
Congratulations and thanks to Canon Doris on her fundraising Ladies Mini-Marathon in Dublin, in June. She raised €945 for the Mabweni school project in Kenya. A big thankyou to all who sponsored her in the Union of Parishes.
Harvest Thanksgiving Services
Killanley Church: Friday 13th September. 8pm. Preacher – Archdeacon Alan Synott.
St. Michael’s, Ballina: Sunday 29th September. 7.00 p.m. Preacher – Archdeacon Alan Synott - Please note: no morning service
Kilglass: Friday 11th October. 8pm.. Preacher – Rev. Molly Deatherage
Easky: Sunday 20th October. 7.30pm.
A special service of remembrance was held for the poet and playwright F. R. Higgins in Foxford Church during the Gathering week-end at the beginning of August. Christopher and Aidan Gray, relatives of Frederick Robert Higgins, travelled from Co. Meath and Aidan recited one of his poems during the Service. In the evening Vivian Sheridan, a Foxford native now resident in Geneva, gave an illustrated talk in the church on the story of Foxford’s Iron Industry and the Church of Ireland families involved.
Baptism: Juliette Lita Maloney was baptised by Rev. Andrea and welcomed into the Christian Community on Sunday 4th August. Congratulations to Lita and Hugh and big sister Amelia.
Benefit Horse Ride: This very enjoyable event took place on Sunday 25th August unfortunately clashing with the big GAA match in Dublin when Mayo reached the Final. None-the-less, a considerable sum was raised towards the restoration of the Church. Great thanks to Barry Redmond and Cathal O’Hare for organising this annual event.
Farewell: In August, Foxford parishioners met at a function in Andrea and Charles’ house to bid farewell to Jean Rowan who had been a faithful member of the congregation for over six years. She was presented with a painting of the local area. Jean and her husband Tim are returning to England. She will be especially remembered for her most sympathetic and enlightening reading of the lessons. We wish them well in their new home near York.
A Service of Introduction for Rev. Andrea as priest-in-charge of Foxford Church will take place on Friday 4th October at 8.00 p.m. The preacher will be Very Rev. Tom Gordon who was in charge of non-stipendiary students at the Theological College when Andrea was there. Everyone is most welcome to attend this service.
Sunday 13th October: A Fund-raising concert of spiritual music will be performed in Foxford Church by James Kilbane at 8.00 p.m. Support would be appreciated.
Harvest Thanksgiving: Sunday 20th October. 7.00 p.m.
CLAREMORRIS: The monthly service in the McWilliam Park Hotel conducted by Rev. Andrea will recommence on 6th October.
Please note change of time to 12 noon.
Firstly may I begin by giving my sincerest thanks to the Rev. George Trimby, Rev Andrea Wills and Enid Goode for taking services in the Union, and especially to Rev George for being on call for any pastoral emergencies, while I was abroad on my annual vacation. As an earthly thank you I am in the process of wrapping sticks of rock from my various ports of call, sugar and fat free of course, and prayers to the Boss will follow. Again, thank you George, Andrea and Enid.
A very special congratulations go to William (Billy) and Viola Cooke on reaching their 50th wedding anniversary. May they have many more years of married bliss surrounded by their family and friends.
The baptism of Baby Mia Lilian Bikerdike, daughter of Mark and Susan, took place in St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Saturday September 7th. Surrounded by family and friends, baby Mai was welcomed into Christ’s church, a joyous occasion for all.
We have reached that time of year again when we give thanks to God for his bountiful harvest of animal and tares.
Harvest services in the Killala Union will be celebrated in St. Patrick’s Cathedral Killala on Sunday 8th September at 8pm, the preacher being Canon Kathy Trimby.
The following Sunday, 15th, at 8pm the Rev Val Rogers will preach in St. Mary’s Church, Crossmolina.
Finally on Friday October 11th at 8pm Bishop Rooke will preach in St. John’s Church, Ballycastle.
On your behalf I would like extend a ‘Céad Mile Fáilte’ to our two new Diocesan Incumbents, the Rev Stan Evans in the Omey Union and the Rev Jake Worley in the Kilmoremoy Group of Parishes. Also congratulation to Rev Andrea Wills on her appointment to the Parish Of Foxford.
And finally, we are told that when the going gets tough, the tough get going. The ladies of Killala certainly took this maxim to heart and as a result sold, bartered and cajoled many items in their summer shop in the vestry of St. Patrick’s cathedral over the summer months. A whopping €4,000 was earned for the parish coffers. In our picture we can see the Aladdin’s Cave the vestry was transformed into.
CLIFDEN AND MOYARD NOTES:
A BBQ was held in Christ Church grounds on August 10th, with the proceeds going to our fund raising campaign and to St. Vincent de Paul. It was a very pleasant evening, well attended and even the rain held off! A big thank you to all those who helped out on the night, cooking, wine waitering, DJ-ing, raffling and to the ladies who supplied succulent salads and delicious desserts. The generosity of a local butcher, John Malone, and Walshe’s Bakery was also very much appreciated.
We were delighted to welcome our new Priest-in -Charge, the Rev. Stan Evans and his wife, Rosemary, to the barbecue. It was lovely meeting them for the first time in such an informal and fun setting. Rev Stan did a great job pulling the winning raffle tickets too. We are really looking forward to the next chapter in the Omey Group’s history under Rev. Stan’s leadership.
We have several more events lined up as part of our fundraising campaign. Two more concerts will be held in ChristChurch. On 22nd Sept. at 1.15pm three of the soloists from the previous evening’s Clifden Arts Festival performance of The Messiah by The Guinness Choir will sing a selection of musical works. On 19th October at 8.00pm, St. Cecelia’s Choir from Dublin will sing for us. A dinner and auction will be held on Saturday 30th November in the Station House Hotel and our annual Christmas Crunch will take place on Sat 28th at12.30pm in Christ Church.
If you haven’t yet purchased one of the Connemara 2014 calendars, they are available in Christ Church and a variety of shops in the area for €10 each. Proceeds for this beautiful calendar go to Christ Chruch and to St Vincent de Paul.
We are happy to announce the appointment of a new Priest in Charge of the Parishes of Clifden, Moyard and Roundstone. He is The Rev Stan Evans, and he is due to be installed in Clifden on Friday 20th September at 7.30p.m.
He will take his first services as our new rector on the 22nd at 10am in Roundstone and 11.30 in Clifden, where he hopes to attract as many parishioners from the Omey Union of Parishes as possible.
In the meantime redecoration and renovations have been carried out on the rectory under the guidance of the Rev Val Rogers, as Rural Dean. The rectory has been properly insulated for the first time ever (there was never any insulation in the walls), and the roof insulation has been doubled. It has also been painted throughout, and as this goes to press the new carpets are being laid.
A lot of work has also been done to tidy up the grounds and replace hinges on outside doors, and generally clean up the exterior, mostly by Stewart and Margaret Freeman, helped by other parishioners from Roundstone.
The new rector hopes to move in on the 12th September.
In Roundstone, the second concert failed to materialise, due to circumstances beyond our control.
The scaffolding is going up on the tower this week, and the lead capping on the parapet will go on next week. This should make an immediate difference to the amount of water which can filter down through the stone. There has been no sign of choughs nesting this year, although some were seen prospecting earlier in the spring.
The Harvest Thanksgiving for the Omey Union of Parishes will be held in Roundstone this year on the 29th September at 3.30p.m., followed by tea at The Roundstone House Hotel, courtesy of Dermot Vaughan.
We are sad to be losing Raymond and Minerva Mason, who are selling Ballynahinch and moving back to America. They have been generous supporters of St Mary’s over the years.
What a great summer it has been, it’s not often I can say that, the sun shone and shone and even when a more normal cycle of weather settled in it was pleasant and bearable. I must confess that back in April and May I asked myself “How are we going to give thanks this harvest season?” so deep and dangerous was the crisis. Now with hand on heart I will sing with fervour “Good is the Lord, our heavenly King”. The Harvest Thanksgiving season will be at full throttle by the time you read this, let’s give it some wellie this year.
This group of parishes has been a hive of activity this summer not least because of the Peace3 activities covered in my article elsewhere in this edition of Tidings.
Skreen parish lunch seemed to go through an upturn in early August with greater numbers in attendance, for a while we were almost at capacity with regard to seating but no one was left standing and there was plenty of food to go around. May I take this opportunity to thank all the people of the Skreen area who support us so well and those of you who travelled from parishes near and far to come and swell the ranks of hungry customers.
Gratitude is due also to local traders and suppliers without whose generosity the event would fail. We also thank the Skreen and Dromard community council for the use of this marvellous facility for this and so many other events.
Last but not least our noble army of workers who toil like Trojans before, during and after the event. After church that morning in Skreen I said to someone “We have a mountain to climb!” and surely we looked back from the peak that evening with a sense of real satisfaction for a job well done as we nursed our sore feet and tired backs. What a team!
A week later the kettles were boiling again this time for tea after our Walk of Christian Unity. It was Skreen’s turn to host this year and along with Fr Michael and his flock we were joined by Fr Tony Gillespie from Templeboy. The liturgy in both churches was very moving and the walk symbolises the reality of living here where Christians of all traditions walk the road of life daily in support of one another. Thanks again to the tireless tea making team.
As we look forward to welcoming the Reverend Jake Worley and Kelly to Kilmoremoy may I thank the team of clergy and parish readers who have conducted divine worship in the five churches. Retired and NSM clergy are voluntary and as the one tasked with covering the services may I say that I could not have had a more willing and cheerful bunch to work with. Our parish readers are also volunteers so thank you all for carrying us through this relatively short vacancy.
Now as Jake rides into the West we need to circle the wagons and welcome him with open arms and get behind him as you got behind all your former rectors.
CORNAMONA VOCATIONAL SCHOOL: The Minister of Education was on hand, though in Ministerial style late, for the official opening of the new wing of Gairmscoil Fheichín Naofa, Corr na Móna on 31st May. The Blessing of the Premises was presided over by The Dean and Fr. Peter Connolly, PP Cornamona.
CONG OUTING: This year the outing took the parishioners of Cong, and friends from the neighbouring area, to Achill Island. The rain pelted down which made for an interesting day. But the warmth of the folk of St Thomas’, Dugort and the beauty of the island more than made up for the inclement weather. Many thanks to Paul for his organisational skills.
CONG COMMUNITY FETE: This year, in contrast to the past two years, heaven smiled on us in Cong and the sun shone bright and warm on the Fete held in the grounds of St Mary’s Cong on 13th July. This added greatly to the atmosphere of the day and we had an increase in the number of people from all arts and parts passing through the gates. From the takings we were able to donate E1500 to the Community Council, E1000 to the Tidy Towns Committee and E2500 to St Mary’s Funds. Well done to everyone and especially to Sorcha Peirce.
ALL SAINTS CLONBUR: A reception was held in August to mark the ( almost ) completion of the renovation work on this little gem of a church in the village of Clonbur. The local Community Council, to which the church is leased by Cong Parish, has done amazing work to breathe new life into the building. The Dean was present and it was good to welcome a former Dean, Rector and Archdeacon of TKA, Antony Previtee, back to his old stomping ground for the occasion.
AASLEAGH: Services in St John the Baptist, Aasleagh, were held during July and August. We welcomed parishioners, friends and visitors to the Sunday evening services and Bishop Rooke led the worship on 18th August. Yet again we extend our thanks to John and Bernie Clesham for all their care of St John’s.
APPOINTMENTS: Congratulations who all who will be assuming new positions in TKA this autumn. Rev Jake Worley in Kilmoremoy; Revd Stan Evans in Omey; Revd Andrea Wills in Foxford; The Dean who is now also Dean of Killala and Provost of Tuam and all the Prebends of TKA who find themselves occupying two stalls in our United Dioceses.
Cong: Sunday 29th September 4.00pm; Preacher Paddy Delaney
Tuam: Sunday 6th October 4.00pm; Preacher Canon Kathy Trimby
QUIZ NIGHT: A Fun Quiz Night in aid of St Mary’s Parish will be held in Lydons Lodge on Friday 11th October at 8pm. Table of 4, E10.
What connects, burgers, bedlam and the Bible? Summer Madness of course! And not just the usual everyday stuff. Rather, the annual get together on the Glenarm Castle Estate, earlier in the summer, exploring ‘The Good Life’, where fun and faith walk, run and play hand and hand. Friendships are formed and renewed and all who go, including our gang from TKA, have a ball, roll on next year…
For those of you who can’t wait that long, there’s always Anois coming up in October. This year Anois is celebrating its 10th anniversary. So if you are aged under 17 and may be interested contact Steve and make it a year to remember!
‘Remembering the importance of meals in our church history and faith’ was the theme of a youth service in Westport recently where members of the Sunday School introduced Exodus, whilst serving starters, and how hungry people were in Old Testament times. Members of Dig Youth Group followed with the main course and encouraged us to look at how Jesus shared interesting stories at mealtimes. Finally a desert of fruit was served by the Confirmation group, helping us consider the gifts of the Holy Spirit and how we can stay close. Everyone left full: in body, mind and spirit. Thanks to all who took part and helped.
Taking part, using our gifts, thanking and praising God, is what is hoped for when the newly formed Youth Band plays at the Harvest in Collooney in October. Hopefully it won’t end there! If you’d like us to come and play at your church or would like to join, contact Steve. The more the merrier!
All the different youth groups will be meeting up with Steve in the next few weeks to plan their programmes for the coming session. If you have any ideas or want to know more, please do contact him. He’d love to hear from you.
GFS: Another fun packed year is primed and on the starting blocks, ready for the off. Leaders have met and planned a session full of games, crafts, cookery, badge work, competition work, Bible Study, Drama and much, much more. The program is bursting at the seams, ready to get going. If you’d like to know more, or may be interested in joining, then contact Mrs Betty Price, the Diocesan President, on 071 9130773 and she will help. After all, the motto is ‘Bear one another’s Burdens and so Fulfill the Law of Christ’
BB: We are looking forward to a new season in 1st Achonry BB. There will be plenty to do, plenty to learn and plenty of activities to enjoy in the company of plenty of friends of all ages. We hope to host a regional event to include swimming and bowling in Carrick on Shannon in November. But that is only one such event.!
Nigel takes over as Captain from Carl this autumn and, with Hazel moving on to pastures new, we are short-handed. We have one person who has offered help but we could do with another. So, if you would like to know more or have a boy aged 6 and above and would like him to join, please speak to Canon Kathy or Nigel Bourke.
Children’s Ministry Group: Another training day in the Diocese early in 2014 is planned for children’s workers. The venue and date are to be confirmed. Ideas for topics would be appreciated and suggestions can be sent to Canon Kathy to aid in the planning and preparation. In the meantime, for a much broader spectrum of ideas and resources why not try the ‘Building Blocks’ Children’s Ministry Conference which will be held on 23rd November at All Hallows College, Dublin. She would also like to hear of any events or experiences from around the Dioceses, like the successful Holiday Club in the Ballisodare Group run in conjunction with New Wine, which hopefully will be an annual event and lead to other activities. Well done them and keep the info coming.
And Finally…Great news, Amy McCrea, from our own Diocese. She has recently been appointed Church of Ireland Youth Worker covering the Republic of Ireland. She will share with us her vision, contact details and more in the next edition of Tidings. So congratulations to her and watch this space…
If you wish more information on these or anything to do with young people then contact either Steve Brickenden (youth officer) or Canon Kathy
As every teacher knows, the New Year starts, not in January, but in September! And once a teacher, always a teacher! Consequently, Mothers’ Union begins again in the various branches throughout the Diocese. May I wish each individual branch a happy, interesting, entertaining and enriching year. I hope new members will be encouraged to come along and together we will do our best to enable the seeds we sow to come to a rich and plentiful harvest.
There is much to look forward to in our organisation this year. We are planning a Mothers’ Union Diocesan Garden Party next spring and of course the World Council meeting is to be held in Belfast at the end of the season. As committees know, MU meetings will only be as good as the thought and preparation which have gone into their planning. They do not just happen! Committees however, sometimes need the help and suggestions and encouragement from the branch members so, if you feel dissatisfied with what is on offer, do not be afraid to give recommendations – I can assure you they will be gratefully received. Get involved – that is my message at the beginning of this new season and together we will go forward confidently and expectantly into a new year of activity.
Alison Rooke: Diocesan President
Mothers’ Union Holy Communion Service In Christchuch ( by Mildred Gilmore )
I attended the Holy Communion Service at Christchurch Cathedral on the first Thursday in June on what was a glorious sunny day, the only representative from Tuam. I was greeted upon arrival by Jeffery McMaster (Karen Duignan’s brother), a native of Rathbarron who was the Cathedral Guide for the day.
Dublin & Glendalough Dioceses host the Service & they were joined by their Link Dioceses of Down & Dromore &, following the cuppa they were to have a tour of the Cathedral. Lunch together was followed by some retail therapy. Phyllis Crothier hopes other Dioceses will organise a similar outing & see the Mothers’ Union Chapel at the Cathedral. All members are welcome to attend the Service which is held on the first Thursday of every month at 11.15 except in July, August or December.
MU Outing to Killesher Church Flower Festival at Florencecourt A few members from Ballisodare Branch joined Sligo MU on their Outing to the Flower Festival at Florencecourt on May 24th. As always one is in awe of all the floral arrangements & wonder how imaginative the flower arranger is.
As we left the Church our bus was showing an unhealthy red light & to ensure our safe arrival at the LaceMuseum in Bellinaleck the driver arranged for us to be transported by the bus transporting our neighbouring Branch of Riverstown while they viewed the Flower Festival. The Museum is an interesting experience, but small, so it was fortunate that a coffee shop next door allowed us to hang around waiting for a replacement bus. Then it was off to Castle Coole & some shopping for an hour or so in Enniskillen before setting out for the Custom House Restaurant in Belcoo, a lovely meal in arelaxed atmosphere. Our only request at the end of the day was to make sure that the date of their outing in 2014 suited Ballisodare Members, testament of a very enjoyable day.
Teleconferencing On the second Monday of every month a group of six older ladies & 3 leaders (myself being one of them) speak to each other for almost an hour on the telephone. We commence with prayer & the leader has a particular topic for discussion, but the ladies don’t have any difficulty keeping the conversation going. We have just one Tuam lady participating at present. Anyone out there like to get involved?!
thought as we focus on what God has done for us through Jesus. What can we do for him?
Over Christmas, we tried thinking of our extended family and bringing something of the love of Christ there, as our travelling nativity crib set, visited a different home each night during Advent, bringing the message alive for young and old, for families and those who lived alone.
Thinking again of our Church family, we hope to invite those who have had baptisms, weddings or funerals to a service on Mothering Sunday in Rathbarron, and in Tubbercurry at Pentecost followed by refreshments, to let people know we still care about them.
Speaking of thoughts, our sympathies go to the family of the late Mary Middleton, who was a faithful member of Rathbarron church for many years, and contributed much to the community, to her large family and many friends. She will be sadly missed.
News of out Mothers’ Union activities is available on that page of Tidings.