Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, 31st January 2010

Catholic Schools Week 2010
31st January – 7th February

To Parents, Chairperson and Members of Boards of Management, Principals and Teachers
Priests of the Diocese and all involved in Catholic Schools in Ossory

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

In these difficult days for the Church community in Ireland it is good that we can take time to reflect on the very positive contribution that all who are involved in Catholic Education continue to make to the mission of the local Church and to society in general. The coming week heralds the commencement of Catholic Schools Week an initiative which focuses on the identity of the Catholic School as a centre of education and formation of the young person in every aspect of their lives. This event is also an important time for Catholics in Ireland to express their solidarity with all of those involved in schools. The theme of Catholic Schools Week this year is ‘The Catholic School - A light for every generation’. This light is especially visible when it is expressed through an ethos that promotes; a profound respect for the dignity & giftedness of the human person, prayer, appropriate catechesis, and a fruitful partnership with the home and local parish. It reminds us that we are constantly challenged to let the light of Christ shine for the present generation and this will remain part of our task for future generations also.

The Second Vatican Council’s declaration on Education states ‘Beautiful indeed and of great importance is the vocation of all those who aid parents in fulfilling their duties and who, as representatives of the human community, undertake the task of education in schools’. We are truly blessed in the diocese of Ossory that so many people give of themselves generously in the service of Catholic Education. I know I speak for all the people of the diocese when I express sincere thanks to all of you; to parents who continually entrust the formation of their children academically, spiritually, and as good human beings to our Catholic Schools; to principals and teachers who day after day are involved in the formation of children and young people; to all who serve on boards of management and parent’s councils; those who act as special needs assistants, people who work as secretaries and all who are involved in the cleaning and maintenance of our schools. During this year of the Priest a special word of thanks for the commitment of our priests who through their involvement in boards of management, visitation of the classroom, and through encouraging teachers and parents in the ways of faith fulfil their mission given at ordination to be educators of the faith.

Finally I pray that the celebration of Catholic Schools Week and all our endeavours to promote a Catholic ethos will help us to appreciate the great treasure our Catholic faith is and the light it has been for past generations and that which it will be for future followers of Jesus Christ.

With every good wish.

Bishop Seamus Freeman SAC

Catholic Schools Week
Catholic Schools Week gives us the opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the tremendous contribution that our Catholic primary and post-primary schools make, not just to Irish society, but to the mission of the Church.
In our parish we give thanks for parents and teachers, members of the boards of management and parent’s associations, special needs assistants, people who work as secretaries, all who are involved in cleaning and maintenance, priests and the many others who give their time and energy in ensuring that our children receive the best education possible and are given the ability to realise their full potential as human beings and as children of God.
This year the theme for the week is ‘Catholic Schools - A Light for Every Generation’. Catholic schools are committed to the education and formation of the young person in every aspect of their lives. Thus Catholic schools are a light for parents, pupils, family members, staff and society in every generation.

St. God of God Girls’ School
The St. John of God Girls’ School will celebrate Catholic Schools Week with a Mass at St. Patrick’s Church at 1.15pm on Friday next. Parents and grandparents of the children are especially invited to attend as are all members of our parish community.

We Celebrate Consecrated Life
World Day of Consecrated Life is the day we celebrate the gift of Religious Life to the Church. Initiated by the Vatican in 1997, this day is an opportunity to celebrate the life and work of religious women and men and to pray for vocations to consecrated life. In St. Patrick’s Parish we have several communities of the St. John of God Sisters, members of the Sisters of Charity and Mill Hill Fathers, a missionary congregation.
Bishop Freeman will be principal celebrant at the Mass of Consecrated Life in St. Mary's Cathedral on Tuesday, 2nd February at 7.30pm. All are welcome to join in this celebration of thanksgiving for consecrated life.

Pray for our Deceased Friends
Recently Deceased: Maureen Teehan, Ballyfoyle. Sarah Kennedy, Cahir. Catherine Mahon, Paulstown. Sr. Canice Broderick, Mercy Convent, Callan: requiem Mass at 12.00pm on Sunday.
Anniversaries: Pauline English (Sat 6.15), Jim Loughlin (Sat 7.00), Noeleen Flood (Sun 10.00), John & Ann Waldron (Sun 10.30), Michael Moore (Sun 11.00), Jack Comerford (Sun 12.00), Michael Dollard (Sun 12.30, Months Mind), Catherine & Joseph Brennan (Tues 10.30), Patrick O’Keeffe (Wed 9.30), Lil, Billy & Eamon Costelloe (Wed 10.30), Con Noonan, John & Annie Free, William, Ellen & Liam Bergin, Derek De Loughrey, William Culleton, Maura Gaffney, Patrick Walsh, Margaret Fanning, Ned Larkin, May Morris Allen, Paddy Morris, Peter Browne, Jimmy Browne, Moya Bligh.
Intentions for next weekend: Catherine Dunphy (Sat 6.15 Months Mind), St. Theophane Duggan (Sat 7.00), Dr. Richard Purcell (Sun 9.30), Pat Kearney (Sun 10.30), Frances Costello (Sun 11.00), Peadar Flanagan (Sun 12.00), Jimmy McGrath (Sun 12.30).

Westcourt News
The February Mass for the blessings of Edmund Rice on our lives and for his canonisation will be celebrated in Westcourt on Monday, 1st February at 7.30pm.

St. Brigid of Kildare
Brigid of Kildare is the secondary patron of Ireland. Brigid was one of the first people to spread the light of the faith in Ireland. She was a woman who gave witness to her faith by her welcome, generosity and care for all with whom she came in contact. Brigid is celebrated on Monday of this week.

Presentation of the Lord
The feast of the Presentation of the Lord is celebrated on this Tuesday. This feast, also known as Candlemas Day, observes the ritual purification of Mary after the birth of Jesus as well as the presentation of Jesus in the Temple in Jerusalem. On this day candles are traditionally blessed for use in the church and family homes. Please feel free to bring family candles to the sacristy before our Masses on Tuesday.

Senior Citizens’ Parish Party
The annual party for the senior citizens in our parish will be held at the Parish Centre on Monday, 8th February. With music by Marble City Sound a great evening is promised in our new Parish Centre.
Tickets will be available at the Parish Office and sacristies in all our churches. Tickets cost €10 and booking is essential.

St. Blaise and Blessing of Throats
The blessing of St. Blaise will be celebrated at all Masses on Wednesday morning.

Hope for Haiti
Gala Concert hosted by the Kilkenny Gospel Choir. Monday 1st February, Venue: St. Mary’s Cathedral Kilkenny. Time: 8pm. Your support would be greatly appreciated.

Enrolments in Parish Schools
The St. John of God Girls’ School and the St. Patrick’s De La Salle Boys’ School are currently dealing with enrolment applications for September 2010. Please contact the schools for further details.
St. John of God School: 056 772 1290
St. Patrick’s De La Salle School: 056 776 1081

Young At Heart Club
The Club will reopen on Wednesday, 3rd February at the Parish Centre. 2.30pm - 4.30pm. All are welcome.

Kilkenny Ladies Friendship Club
The Ladies’ Friendship club will reopen on Wednesday, 3rd February in Social Services Centre, Waterford Road at 8pm. New and existing members most welcome.

Singers Wanted
Members of the Youth choir are holding guitar lessons in the Parish Centre every Monday Night. We have a group of 10 children who are learning to play the guitar but we are in need of some singers to help them. If you have an hour to spare please come along to the parish centre at 7pm on Monday night.

Questions People Ask
Q. I’m struggling with my faith. I’m full of worries and anxieties. I try to pray but I don’t think I really trust God. I feel guilty and I can’t let go of past sins even after confession. I go to Church but my mind is elsewhere. I’m all a mess. What can I do?
A. Look how often you’ve used the first person singular. You are locked up in yourself but the chains that bind you have no lock except your own tight grip. When you open yourself to God and other people the chains will drop off. You won’t find peace in self-analysis. Let your prayer be more adoration and less petition. And never do anything you know to be against God’s will. In his will is your peace.
Fr. Silvester O’Flynn OFM Cap