Friday, April 17, 2009

Palm Sunday, 5th April 2009

Fast-forwarding Pain
Why fast-forward Jesus’ suffering and death to Palm Sunday? Why can’t we wait for Good Friday? Today’s celebration is joyous, even triumphal. Why spoil it by anticipating Jesus’ suffering and death? Strange that Christianity, a religion of joy, can’t celebrate today’s joyous event without insisting on a long reading of Jesus’ suffering and death in its liturgy. Today’s First Reading says, ‘the Lord has opened my ear’ – and I hear a question: Why not allow Jesus his moment of glory, and us our moment of joy? For a moment only it is. The triumph doesn’t last long. We know that. Time enough to focus on suffering when Good Friday comes. Then it would have even greater impact as we moved from the exuberance of Palm Sunday and the cosiness of Holy Thursday to the horror of Good Friday, then soar to the elation of Easter Sunday. Too quickly focusing on suffering, perhaps thinking it God-willed, presents a false image of God. Anyone inclined to do so should recall God’s words to the prophet Ezekiel, ‘Say to them, “As I live,” says the Lord God, “I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked but that the wicked turn from their ways and live …”’ Neither, does God take pleasure in the sinner’s suffering. And most definitely, not in his Son’s. It’s important that we be people of joy, even when faced with suffering. Let us celebrate joy exclusively when the occasion merits it. Palm Sunday is one such occasion.
Fr Tom Cahill SVD

Westcourt News
The April Mass for the canonization of Blessed Edmund Rice will be celebrated in Westcourt on Monday, 6th April at 7.30pm. The members of Callan Credit Union are preparing the liturgy for this Mass. All are cordially invited to join in this celebration.

The rosary will be recited at the statue of Our Lady of Kilkenny, James’ Green on this Sunday, 5th April at 3pm. All welcome.

Questions People Ask
Q. Was there any special reason why people chose palm branches to welcome Jesus to Jerusalem?
A. The date palm, valued for its nutritious fruit, was depicted on the walls of the Temple. A palm tree grows as a single trunk, tall and straight. At the top it spreads out a crown of fronds or short branches which bear leaves and fruit. Its upright standing inspired the psalmist to picture the just flourishing like the palm tree. It is a symbol of prayer, as one stands before God, with arms outstretched and bearing fruit. In the Apocalypse the Christian martyrs are clad in white garments, waving palm branches before the throne of God. We speak of the palm of martyrdom.
Fr Silvester O’Flynn OFM Cap

Pray for Our Deceased Friends
Recently Deceased: Neil Cooke, 22 Marble Crest. Funeral prayers at Hehir’s Funeral Home at 6.15pm on Monday followed by removal to Gowran Church. Requiem Mass on Tuesday at 11am followed by burial at Gowran Cemetery. Rosary at Hehir’s Funeral Home at 8pm on Sunday. Larry Malone, Wellington Square & Dublin. Geoff Nolan, Newmarket.
Months Mind: Johanna Fanning (Sun 12.30). Mick Brophy.
Anniversaries: Oliver Kelly (Sat 6.15), Denis Kavanagh (Sat 7.00), Ellen Pattison (Sun 9.30), Eileen Byrne (Sun 10.00), Margaret (Daisy) Phelan, Dr. W.J. Phelan, Moya Bligh (Sun 11.00), Brigid Currid (Mon 6:15), John & Mary Conway (Tues 6.15), Pat Holohan, Patrick Shortall, Johnny Cullen., Kathleen Esmonde, Laurence O’Donoghue, Christina Walsh, Bridget Donnelly, Patrick Massey, Ellen & Alan Kelly.

Mass for Lent
Thanks to all who attended the extra 6.15pm Mass at St. Fiacre’s Church during Lent. Please note there will not be a 6.15pm Mass on Wednesday to enable priests and people attend the Chrism Mass at the cathedral.

Holy Week Ceremonies
We appeal to all to make a special effort to join with our Christian Community in celebrating Holy Week. We have a wide range of celebrations at various times in our parish and we invite you to come along. We particularly invite all to the Solemn Easter Vigil on Saturday evening. This should be the highlight of the year for those who believe that Christ died for our sins and rose again to save us from eternal damnation.

Chrism Mass
The annual Chrism Mass will be celebrated at St. Mary’s Cathedral on Wednesday, 8th April at 7.30pm. Sacred Oils, for use in the diocese during the coming year, will be consecrated during the liturgy. Bishop Séamus invites all to attend.

Family Liturgy
Practice for the Family Liturgy during will take place in St. Fiacre’s Church on Wednesday, 8th April at 6.15pm. During this practice we will prepare the music, readings and prayers for Holy Thursday and for Easter Sunday. All are welcome.

Eucharistic Adoration
Because of the public holidays there will not be any Eucharistic Adoration on Friday, 10th April (Good Friday) or on Monday, 13th April (Easter Monday).

St. Joseph’s Young Priests Society
The next meeting of the St. Joseph’s Young Priests Society will take place on Friday, 8th May 2009. There will be no meeting on Friday, 10th April as it is Good Friday. New members very welcome.

Do This In Memory...
We welcome those from schools within our parish who are preparing to receive First Holy Communion and their families to our 10.30am and 11am Masses this weekend. Only a few short weeks until the great day.

Easter Sunday Night
St. Patrick’s Parish Lourdes Fund holds it’s annual Easter Sunday Night fundraising dance and cabaret at Springhill Court Hotel. The night has always been most enjoyable and the occasion presents an opportunity for camaraderie and mingling for parishioners and friends alike. Music is by Cupla and commences at 9pm. Admission is €10. Seven deserving people from the parish are being sent to Lourdes this year thanks to year long fundraising by the committee and the generosity of their fellow parishioners and your support on the night would be greatly appreciated. Tickets are available from any committee member, the Parish Centre or on the door on Easter Sunday night.

James Stephens Camogie Club
All U8s and U10s are welcome to training starting Monday, 6th April in Nuncio Road at 6-7pm. To our old members, welcome back: to anyone who is interested in playing, you will be most welcome. Any queries, please contact Ann Mulholland on 085 153 3200 or Helena O’Rourke on 086 271 6935.

New Parish Envelopes
New Parish Contribution Envelopes will be distributed in the coming weeks. We are grateful to all who use these envelopes or Standing Orders to contribute to the income of the parish and the priests. These are the chief sources of income for the parish and its priests.
If you are new to the parish, or haven’t received envelopes in the past and would like to receive them now, then please contact any of the priests or the Parish Office. Once again, thanks to all who support us and the work we do.

Parish Draw
Thanks to all who supported the parish draw. A comprehensive financial report is being prepared for next week’s newsletter.

Mother Mary Aikenhead
All in the parish join in congratulating the Religious Sisters of Charity and their collaborators at St. Patrick’s Centre, Kells Road as they celebrate the 150th anniversary of the death of their foundress Mother Mary Aikenhead. The sisters and their staff have provided an invaluable service to the local community for 130 years.

Monster Easter Egg Raffle
A Monster Easter Egg Raffle in aid of the St. Vincent de Paul Society will be held on Easter Saturday in the charity shop Fred's Fashions, Butts Green, Kilkenny. Tickets on sale from the shop at €2 a strip or 3 for €5. Telephone 056 770 2637. If you are not in you can't win. Happy Easter.

Work in St. Patrick’s Church
St. Patrick’s Church has been further enhanced by the fitting of a new sanctuary carpet during the week. This completes the redecorating programme begun last year.
Work continues on the installation of the reconditioned pipe organ. While the project will not be complete the organ will be in use during the Holy Week and Easter liturgies.

Kilkenny Medugorje Pilgrimage
Saturday, 30th May to Saturday, 6th June. Spiritual Director with group. Coach to airport. Cost €669 inclusive. Bookings: 056 776 5840, 086 882 5622.

Parish Centre Hours
The Parish Centre will be closed on Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Weekend including the Bank Holiday. Groups that use our facilities on these days are asked to take note. The priests can always be contacted by dialling 056 776 4400 and following the auto prompts.

Vocations Year Pilgrimage 2009
You are invited to join a pilgrimage to Ars, Taize, La Salette, Paray Le Monial and Lyon from 7th - 14th September. All in price of €775. Directors: Fr. Willie Purcell, Fr. Ray Dempsey and Fr. Tom Corcoran. Booking: Manning Travel Kilkenny, High Street Kilkenny. Telephone: 056 772 2950 / 772 1096.


As we have journeyed together this Lent we have prayed in solidarity with the 26 million people who have been displaced as a result of conflict around the world. We have heard their stories and found out some of the ways Trócaire seeks to be beacons of light for these our most vulnerable brothers and sisters. Today we invite you once again to consider Somalia and to hear an important invitation from Trócaire around a way you can help. Please sign Trócaire’s campaign postcards available from Maynooth (01 629 3333) or sign online at In doing so you are showing your desire to stand in solidarity with our brothers and sisters in need.