Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time 10th August 2008

In his Hymn of the Universe (p. 24) Teilhard de Chardin prays: “Shatter, my God, through the daring of your revelation the childishly timid outlook that can conceive of nothing greater or more vital in the world than the pitiable perfection of our human organism.” Today’s First Reading and the Gospel put me in mind of that prayer. They shatter the dubious certainties of small minds. They shatter the shaky security of a mind trapped inside predictable parameters, bound by the banal, fearful of the unknown, unable to probe the eternal. Those two readings come with thoughts and imagery nearly too powerful to comprehend and too incredible to accept. You have Elijah meeting God at Horeb. And how does God appear? In a mighty rock-splitting wind? No. In a terrifying earthquake? No. In a ferocious fire? No. But in the most unlikely sound of sheer silence. When the clutter goes, God comes. Then in the Gospel reading you have Jesus walking on water. Another epiphany of God’s presence in the creation of calm. The imagery of Psalm 107:29 is used here: he made the storm be still, and the waves of the seas were hushed. When the noise and turmoil stops God’s presence begins to be felt. This is the something greater and more vital than Teilhard prayed for: the realization that God is never far away, but is active within his creation, and for a purpose. Only an outlook shattered by revelation can hope to grasp its implications.
Fr. Tom Cahill

Vincentian Annual Pilgrimage
Join the Vincentian Fathers, Daughters of Charity, Society of St. Vincent De Paul and the Sisters of the Holy Faith as they pilgrimage to Knock to honour Our Blessed Lady and give thanks for the many blessings we receive. Pilgrimage will take place on Saturday, 13th September 2008. Further details when they come to hand.

Questions People Ask
Q. I like to go to Knock every year but my son insists that these apparitions are hallucinations or imaginary voices. How can I answer him?
A. The best test of any alleged apparition is what Jesus said: By their fruits you shall know them. Here are three tests: Is the teaching in accord with scripture and sound faith? Does it strengthen and improve the moral life of people? Is there evidence here of God’s healing power? Knock passes on all three criteria. The apparition there is a deep, silent contemplation of the sacrifice of Jesus, Lamb of God, in the company of Mary and the saints.
Fr. Silvester O’Flynn OFM Cap

Castlecomer District Hospital
There will be a night of music and dance in aid of the Castlecomer District Hospital on Friday, 22nd of August in Castlecomer Community Hall at 8pm. Performances will include African Drumming, IrishDancing, Hip Hop and contemporary dance. For further information, contact Alan Gleeson on 087 645 2015

Pray for the Deceased
Recently Deceased: Ellen Spencer, Cullohill, Co. Laois. Con O’Shea, Vicar Street, Joe Woodlock, St. Fiacre’s Place.
Months Mind: Mary Norris (Sun 10.00), Theresa Delahunty (Sun 12.30).
Anniversaries: Mary Coogan (Sat 6.15), Sr. Catherine Fennessy (Sun 9.30), Ellen McEvoy (Sun 10.30), Tony Henderson (Sun 11.00), Gabriel Warde (Sun 12.00), Patrick Brophy, Peter Keenan, Diane Keenan, Jim Keenan, Nance O’Neill, Walter Kavanagh, Breda O’Hara, William Deegan, Joe Delaney.
Intentions of next weekend: Evelyn Hughes (Sat 6.15), Margaret Shanahan & Joe Maher (Sat 7.00), Denis Treacy (Sun 10.00), James & Mary Brennan (Sun 11.00), Jack Bolger (Sun 12.00), Joseph McHugh (Sun 12.30).

Divine Mercy Prayer
In honour of Divine Mercy there will be an hour of prayer and adoration in St. Mary’s Cathedral on Sunday, 10th August between 3 and 4.00pm. All welcome.

Good Luck to the Cats!
We join in wishing the Kilkenny hurlers all the best this weekend. We especially wish every success to those from our parish involved with the teams.

Year of Vocation Pilgrim Walk
The focus for the month of August for the Year of Vocation is pilgrimage. On Sunday 24th August there will be a Year of Vocation pilgrim walk from Shannonbridge to Clonmacnois, Co Offaly. People are invited from across the country to join with us to make this walk and to pray for vocations. The event is being organised in conjunction with the Ursulines in Shannonbridge. The pilgrim walk will start at 2.00pm sharp on Sunday, 24th August at the church car park in Shannonbridge. The route from there to Clonmacnois is approximately four miles. There will be several stops along the route for prayers and reflection at the coffin trees, the Mass Rock, St Ciaran’s Well and then into the monastic site for prayer and reflection at the Cross of Scriptures and Temple Ciarán. Parishes around the country are encouraged to invite pilgrims to this event.
People are also invited to send in their prayer petitions which will be prayed for during the pilgrimage on August 24th. Petitions can be emailed to the following address: bdrumm@catholiccommunications.ie or posted to - Year of Vocation Office, Columba Centre, Maynooth, Co Kildare.

“The Rock” Youth Project
We are very grateful to all who helped or supported so generously with bag-filling at Supervalu. Over €2,800 was collected.

Our Lady’s Island, Wexford
Each day of the pilgrimage season, 15th August to 8th September: Mass at 3.00pm and 8.00pm. Pilgrims are invited to make their own way around the island reflecting on the mysteries of the Most Holy Rosary.
· Friday, 15th August: Feast of the Assumption: Mass at 3.00pm. Eucharistic Procession at 3.45pm concluding with benediction.
· Sunday, 17th August: Mass and General Anointing of the Sick at 3.00pm.
· Sunday, 24th August: Liturgy of Light at 8.30pm.
· Sunday, 31st August: Mass at 3.00pm and 8.00pm.
· Sunday, 7th September: Mass at 3.00pm and 8.00pm.

Assumption of Our Lady
Next Friday, 15th August is the feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin into Heaven. Beginning with the Vigil Masses on Thursday evening services in our parish will follow the usual weekend timetable. There will be no Mass on Friday evening.

Clonmacnois Youth Festival
The Youth 2000 Summer Festival will take place near the ancient ruins of the Clonmacnois monastic site in Co. Offaly. The festival is for young people age 16 - 35 and will take place over the weekend of Thursday, 14th - Sunday, 17th August 2008. The weekend will include inspiring talks, dramas, a concert, prayer, Mass, games, and times of sharing. It promises to be a great opportunity for young people for all around Ireland to explore their Catholic faith, meet new friends and have some craic! This is a donation-only retreat. Free buses are available throughout the country - just bring a sleeping bag and a pair of wellies. (Over 18s may like to bring their own tent.) For further information see posters at the back of the church or www.youth2000.ie or 01 675 3690.

St. Fiacre’s Well Novena
The annual St. Fiacre’s Well novena begins at 8.00pm on Saturday, 23rd August and continues each evening at the same time. Bishop Freeman has accepted our invitation to be principal celebrant at this year’s open-air Mass on Sunday, 31st August.
St. Fiacre’s Well is approached through the grounds of Sheastown House a few miles out the Bennettsbridge Road.

Organ Recital
Ronan Murray - organist, pianist, songwriter, sacred, classical, pop, improvisation - accompanied by his sister Niamh Murray - soprano (widely regarded as one of Ireland’s most versatile talented and charismatic artists). St. John’s Catholic Church, Dublin Road at 3pm on Sunday afternoon, 17th August. Donations in aid of Church Centenary Fund.

Golden Jubilee
We join in wishing Monsignor Francis Pattison all the best as he celebrates the golden jubilee of his ordination to the priesthood. Monsignor Pattison, who is a native of the parish, was ordained at St. Mary’s Cathedral in 1958 before going to work in San Diego, California. He is brother of former Ceann Comhairle Séamus Pattison and is a regular visitor to our parish. All are welcome to join in a special Golden Jubilee Mass at St. Patrick’s Church at 12.30pm on next Saturday.

Mayor of the Village
In aid of St. Patrick’s Houses for the Elderly. Would you or do you know of someone who would like to be Mayor/Mayoress of the Village? We are looking for people to nominate or place their own names forward for this competition. Names can be given at the Parish Office and for further information contact the Parish Office at 056 776 4400

National Grandparents Pilgrimage
The National Grandparents’ Pilgrimage takes place in Knock this year on Sunday, 14th September. This is the second year of the pilgrimage which was launched last year by Catherine Wiley. The 2007 pilgrimage was a resounding success with almost 6,000 people in attendance at the event in Knock. The Chief Celebrant at this year’s Pilgrimage Mass will be Bishop John Fleming, Bishop of Killala. Liam Lawton will be guest singer at the event and David Quinn from the Iona Institute is the keynote speaker.
There will be a link up this year between the Year of Vocation initiative and the National Grandparents’ Pilgrimage. The importance of grandparents in the lives of young people is something that needs to be highlighted and applauded. Grandparents play a unique role in the lives of their grandchildren. They have had an invaluable role in passing on tradition, culture and most of all the Christian faith to countless generations of people.
Last year’s Grandparents’ Pilgrimage saw children from all over the country writing prayers for their grandparents. A selection of these prayers as well as additional information on the pilgrimage is available on the official website for the pilgrimage — www.nationalgrandparentspilgrimage.com

Redecorating St. Fiacre’s Church
As the building work approaches an end at St. Fiacre’s Church we are about to redecorate the building itself. The walls outside and inside will be washed and painted shortly. Preparatory work will begin soon - we ask your patience as we try some colour samples.
We also intend to recover the floors in the church and this will be attended to as soon as the other ’dirtier’ work is completed.
Thanks to all who have been so patient during the past 14 months. The work will be completed very soon.