Page 1

D I O C E S E O F T U A M , K I L L A L A A N D A C H O N RY


Headmaster: John D. Rafter, B.A.(Mod), B.Sc., HDipEd.

Unlimited Opportunities Co-educational, Church of Ireland governed, Boarding & Day school

Since 1669, The King’s Hospital has carefully maintained traditional values and combined them with modern, cutting-edge education and facilities to create a welcoming, holistic environment. This enhances every students’ academic, cultural, creative, sporting and social development. Students discover and reach their full potential with the assistance of dedicated staff who offer individual personal, academic and pastoral support throughout their time in school and with the transition to 3rd level education and beyond. A beautiful and inspirational 80 acre campus with modern en-suite boarding facilities provides opportunities for elite achievers in all disciplines, while promoting positive health, welfare, fitness and fun for all students.

• 28 academic subjects • Form 1 subject sampling • Dedicated 1 to 1 study and career advice • 20+ sports on campus • Extensive art, music and drama programmes • 5 & 7 day Boarding options • Easy access to all motorways at M50 and N4 junction in West Dublin

For more information or to make an appointment, please contact our Admissions Department at (01) 643 6564 or email: Please also check out our updated website at



The Bishop writes . . . that Archdeacon Gary Hastings is leaving us for a parish in Dublin. Gary has served all his mtry in the West of Ireland and he and Caitriona have made an enormous contribution over many years. They will be sorely missed. In thanking them and wishing them God’s blessing for all that lies ahead in Killiney, Easter reminds us that there is always hope and light. As a change will be both challenging and refreshing for them, so too for the people and parishes they leave behind.


The magazine of the Church of Ireland Diocese of Tuam, Killala and Achonry


All submissions for the Summer issue of Tidings, including advertisements, must be in by 8 June 2018


Views expressed in Tidings are those of the contributors and are not necessarily the views of the Editor or the magazine committee.


All advertising enquiries should be directed to: Provost Stan Evans


Provost Stan Evans


Revd Dr Andrew Ison


Design: Amanda Moore Design Printing: KPS Colourprint Ltd Knock, Co. Mayo

You will read elsewhere in this issue of the continuing deliberations of our joint working group with Limerick and Welcome to the Easter issue of Tidings. Killaloe Diocese. Despite real progress, Easter and the Resurrection comes at many uncertainties remain. Some are the end of the Penitential Season of unhappy with the idea of any kind of Lent and Holy Week, when, in our amalgamation. Others see it as an Christian calendar we recall Christ’s opportunity. Whatever our fears or long and tortuous journey of regrets, and we will all have some, let temptation and trial culminating in the us not lose sight of the bigger picture Cross. Hence, in the light of our Lord’s – and the knowledge that Christ experience in the run-up to that first understands what it is to confront Easter Day, we reflect on the difficulties difficulties and that he offers the of life that we all face in one form or example of all things made new in another and the demands they make union with him. upon us. It is a time of challenge when we determine as followers of Christ to A concern for those of us who put our best foot forward in the hope travelled to Kenya in November is that of something better. For Christ, the the local politicians who promised the misery of the Cross and all that went final amount of funding to complete the before it was replaced by the joy of the work on the three water tanks has not Resurrection. Thus Lent and Holy yet been forthcoming. As we all know, Week have become reminders of political promises are easily made in darkness leading to light; of despair the run-up to an election! For those of being replaced by hope, of death us who have seen what a difference the completed project would make and overcome by life in all its beauty. who feel we know some of the people We all have our moments of darkness who will benefit from it, this is to confront. For some, it is the particularly disappointing. For now, we devastating news of a serious, life- must simply wait and see, but we must changing illness. For others, it is perhaps also be mindful of the Easter hope. May the messiness of a difficult relationship goodness and generosity replace or situation, over which we appear to broken promises so that Christ’s will have little or no control. So often, for his people may flourish. caught in the trauma of such challenges, it is difficult to see clearly. Hope seems Enjoy the Easter Season. May it truly be useless. Clouds of darkness overwhelm. a time of new beginnings for you in But our Christian faith offers us both your life. May hope be renewed. The hope and light at such times, as Easter stretch of daylight in the evenings along with the early growth of Summer, reminds us. reflects the changing seasons, both In our Diocese at this time we have a environmentally and in our own lives. number of uncertain situations. The parishioners of Galway and Kilcummin, +Patrick and indeed people across the Diocese were shocked and saddened to hear 1

Whats On


MARCH Sun 4th Sun 11th Mon 12th Thurs 15th Wed 21st Wed 21st Thurs 22nd Fri 23rd Sun 25th

Service in Claremorris, 12noon Mothering Sunday RB Week, Dublin Diocesan Interviews for Ordained Local Ministry Clergy Farewell to the Ven and Mrs Hastings, Westport, 1pm Magazine Committee Meeting, Westport, 3pm ICC AGM, Drogheda Joint Working Group Meeting, Ballinasloe, 11am Palm Sunday – start of Holy Week

APRIL Sun 1st Sun 1st Thurs 19th Thurs 19th Thurs 19th Fri 20th Sat 21st Sat 21st Sun 22nd Wed 25th Fri 27th Sun 29th Sun 29th

Sunday 1st Easter Day, Dawn Service, Dunmoran Strand, 7.30am Service in Claremorris, 12noon Diocesan Finance Committee, Claremorris, 4pm Diocesan Glebes Committee, Claremorris, 5pm Diocesan Council Meeting, Claremorris, 7pm Institution of Ven Gary Hastings, Holy Trinity Killiney, 8pm MU Diocesan Council, Bishop’s House, 10.30am Confirmation Day at Croagh Patrick, 11am Confirmation in Skreen Group, Dromore West, 11.30am Inter Diocesan Learning Event, Leixlip, Joint Meeting of Diocesan Councils, Lady Gregory Hotel, Gort, 10.30am Confirmation in Ballisodare Group, Ballisodare, 11am MU Diocesan Service, Tubbercurry, 4pm

MAY Sat 5th Sun 6th Sun 6th Thurs 10th Thurs 17th Fri 18th Sun 20th Sat 26th Sun 27th

Diocesan Fun Day to Innisbofin Island, Time TBD Confirmation in Kilmoremoy Union, Easkey, 11am Service in Claremorris, 12noon Saturday 6th General Synod, Armagh Wardens of Readers Meeting, Dublin, 11am Clergy Bookclub, Crossmolina Rectory, 11am Confirmation in Galway Group, Galway 11am MU ‘Mums-in-May’ Tea Party, Bishop’s House, 2.30pm Confirmation in Aughaval Group, Westport, 11.30am

JUNE Sun 3rd Thurs 7th Thurs 7th Thurs 7th Thurs 7th Mon 11th Sat 16th Sun 17th

Service in Claremorris, 12noon Board of Education Meeting, Claremorris, 2pm Diocesan Finance Committee, Claremorris, 4pm Diocesan Glebes Committee, Claremorris, 5pm Diocesan Council Meeting, Claremorris, 7pm RB Week, Dublin Diocesan Greenway Cycle from Ballina to Killala, Meet 10.30am Choristers’ Service, Galway 11.30am


Appointments The Venerable Gary Hastings,Archdeacon of Tuam and Rector of Galway and Kilcummin Parishes, to be Rector of Holy Trinity Parish, Killiney in the Diocese of Dublin. Archdeacon Hastings will be instituted by the Archbishop of Dublin on Friday 20th April at 8pm in Holy Trinity Church.

The Rev Dr Andrew Ison, Rector of the Ballisodare Group of Parishes and Rural Dean of Killala and Achonry, to be also Assistant Editor of Tidings.

Mrs Maebh O’Herlihy, Diocesan Lay Reader, to be also Co-ordinator of the Tuam, Killala and Achonry ‘Centre for Spirituality’ initiative.

The Rev Canon Noel Regan, acting Priest in-charge of the Skreen Group until 31st March 2018, to remain in post until 31st December 2018. Special thanks to Canon Regan for the ministry he is offering to the parishioners of Dromard, Dromore West and Skreen.

STATEMENT ON THE PROPOSAL TO REPEAL THE 8TH AMENDMENT TO THE IRISH CONSTITUTION FROM THE ARCHBISHOP OF ARMAGH AND THE ARCHBISHOP OF DUBLIN The following statement is from The Most Revd Dr Richard Clarke, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, and The Most Revd Dr Michael Jackson, Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland: The tradition of the Church of Ireland would reject an unrestricted access to abortion, while being concerned to ensure provision for hopefully rare circumstances and in a secure medical setting. Where individuals draw such a line will inevitably differ. Instances where the life of the woman is at serious risk have long been regarded within Church of Ireland teaching as situations where termination of a pregnancy would be justifiable. For some, pregnancy after sexual crime or the medical certainty of fatal foetal abnormality might also be seen as circumstances where abortion could be considered as justified. In every situation, however, the church seeks to offer pastoral care sensitive to the physical, mental and spiritual wellbeing of women and families who find themselves in such difficult situations. With respect to current proposals:

• We favour a modification of the Article 40.3.3 in such a way that allows for the Oireachtas to have legislative responsibility to address termination of pregnancy, any rights of the unborn and the rights of the pregnant woman within clearly defined boundaries and parameters. • We recognise the dilemma faced both by legislators and by medical, nursing and healthcare practitioners with regards to access to unrestricted abortion during the early months of pregnancy. However, unrestricted access to abortion in the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, or indeed at any stage, is not an ethical position we can accept.  • We would suggest that current legislation should be strengthened to ensure that the needs of pregnant women facing difficult situations can be addressed quickly and comprehensively through improved support services. This will require significant and sustained investment in both medical and mental health services. • We acknowledge that too often in this debate the voice of women has not been heard.The church will seek to continue to care for and pastorally stand alongside women, and their partners and families, who face immensely difficult situations and dilemmas. Issued 5th February 2018


Message from Samara

Message from sAMARA in syria Dear Stan, It is hard to find words or comprehend the unending violence and suffering in Syria, especially when we are confronted by the multitude of heart breaking and disturbing images and messages in our media.Yet there is so much that is left unsaid about what is happening on the ground or why.

The corporate media do not tell the whole story or give a balanced or neutral explanation, they simply circulate the videos, interviews, information and images that are made and given to them by groups with very clear political and military motives, and who have a track record of creating emotive videos by means that we would all consider to be unacceptable and sickening on every level. These cannot be trusted. It is the ordinary and the poor people who pay the highest price as a result.They don’t need more military intervention, bombs, rockets or guns. They need real peace, they need real love and they need real hope.

The outside world gives the impression that it should decide the future of Syria, but this disregards the voice of the Syrian people living inside Syria, which has not been heard by the outside world. This should not come as a surprise as the most significant groups who are fighting against the Syrian Army are funded by nations and groups outside Syria, and have been since the beginning of the conflict. This in itself speaks volumes about the real motives behind this conflict and the real actors and parties to the violence, even if they hide behind the groups who are doing most of the fighting on the group.

visited Syria during the course of the conflict. Instead they are based on the testimonies of groups in Syria who give themselves names which suggest an altruistic motive but who are clearly linked to the groups involved in the fighting. Many of these are the same groups that created the most horrifying and bloody situations in the first place, and who have a political or military motive and a vested interest in stirring up and influencing international opinion.This is how they do their PR and raise their support.

For the tiny minority of people in the West who have visited Syria during the conflict, it is so clear that the ordinary people living in the free and freed areas of Syria have lived very different experiences of the war in their country compared with the one created by the media. It is also so clear that the people who have lived under the control of groups that are called "rebels" by our media paint a completely different picture than the one created by our media . The one thing that is universally true is that the levels of suffering in Syria are beyond anything that can be imagined by anyone outside the country.

Many people are living in areas which were previously under siege, or were living their ordinary lives when extremist armies took their neighbourhoods, mercilessly, and with brutal force. These extremist armies have told the outside world that they are fighting for freedom, but the people in Syria report that they have instead brought a reign of greater tyranny and terror than anything they have experienced in their lifetimes. I spoke to so many of these people while I was in Syria. They came from all Governments outside Syria, have supplied arms, walks of life: wealthy and poor, professionals and physical and financial support whether directly or unskilled workers, young and old, well educated and indirectly, to the groups which they call "rebels" inside less educated and from all of the main religious groups. Syria but who the people of Syria call terrorists. It is But they were ordinary civilian people just living their hard for the Syrians to find another name for armies lives when this started. This is just one of dozens and who take whole districts killing civilians, beheading dozens of people I met in Syria who tell the same people, taking people as slaves, raping the girls and story of everything that they have lived through. He women and firing rockets into the other civilian parts was affected by the same group in Aleppo who are of the city. These groups take people's homes, their currently controlling East Ghouta. businesses and keep the civilians who don't flee in time under siege for years. But our mainstream media Compassion is our call to action, and from the rarely tell the whole story about this, and by comfort of our different world here in the West with neglecting very important facts that demonstrate both free and accessible healthcare, it should be our sides of the story and how and why the situation has priority to show love and generosity to our brothers come about, it creates a very distorted picture of and sisters in need. Please pray for these dear people what is really happening as well as who is to blame. and our teams as they work tirelessly to bring relief It is disturbing that most of the articles and reports about Syria are written by people who have not


Best wishes Samara .............March 2018

When it feels irreplaceable, trust Ecclesiastical Providing specialist insurance since 1887.


Contact us on: +353 1 619 0300 or email us:

Faith | Heritage | Fine Art | Charity | Education | Property Owners

Ecclesiastical Insurance O ce plc (EIO) Reg. No. 24869. Registered in England at Beaufort House, Brunswick Road, Gloucester, GL1 1JZ, UK. Registered Branch in Dublin, Ireland. Reg. No. 902180. 2nd Floor, Block F2, EastPoint, Dublin 3, D03 T6P8. In the Republic of Ireland: Ecclesiastical Insurance O ce plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority in the United Kingdom, and is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland for Conduct of Business rules. In Northern Ireland: Ecclesiastical Insurance O ce plc is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.

The illusion of a rising Economic Tide

The illusion of a rising economic tide. (Or why the statistics can never tell us the real story). Geoff Scargill I often wonder what it must be like for someone living in poverty, deprivation or need to read the optimistic articles in our daily newspapers about how unemployment has fallen, that property prices are once again on the rise and that finally, the sun is beginning to shine on a newly invigorated and prosperous Ireland. To most people this is just ‘news’ but to many, it is simply a pack of lies. Not because it isn’t true, but because it is not true for them. The Irish business employers group, IBEC, advised recently that, as a nation our ‘net wealth position’ had never been better, but that is like me standing beside the latest Euro Millions Lotto winner with an observer remarking on our high average net worth. Nothing to do with me, mate! In 2017, a year when unemployment was down to circa 6%, Protestant Aid still received over 1000 General Grant Applications – many of those seeking help were actually employed confirming the need to eliminate the notion that ‘having a job’ insulates one from all forms of deprivation. The problem is that some were on minimum wage, others deserted by their partners, bereaved, ill (mentally or physically) or had some other element in their lives that caused severe financial distress. The buoyant statistics don’t show the pain and misery caused by the above, neither do they show the problems caused by the almost boom-time high house prices or more pertinently, by record rent levels. The prospect of saving for a home has for many, become a long-forgotten dream and while most of Europe is perplexed by our obsession with owning a home, it can be devastating to have this aspiration crushed from our DNA. When the result of this is having to pay astronomical rents, further reducing the possibility of home ownership, the outlook can seem bleak. According to the CSO Yearbook of Ireland 2016, the average industrial wage was €45,075 per annum for someone working full-time – after tax this results in monthly take home pay of approximately €2800 – considering that it can cost €2000 per month to rent a twobedroom apartment in Dublin 8 or a three bed-room house in Killester, you begin to see the problem. That would leave €800 per month for utilities, child-care, 6

transport, food etc – and what about all of those earning below the average industrial wage, of which there are many? The financial crises has also left its mark with, in many cases, high levels of household debt putting numerous families on the back-foot when it comes to restoring fiscal normality, with pressure from banks for some, leading to a deterioration in mental and physical wellbeing. While the concept of personal responsibility must be a part of the equation, most of the General Grant cases received by Protestant Aid describe situations that are driven by circumstances over which our applicants have no control. The family who have become homeless because their landlord needed to sell or the home where illness or bereavement has struck. People apply for assistance for many reasons and they can vary greatly from case to case, but behind each application is a voice calling for help, an individual or family needing reassurance and support. In that context, each of us has a social responsibility an obligation to act for the benefit of society at large and even a cursory knowledge of our bibles will remind us that we also have responsibilities as Christians to each other The Greek word allelon gives us a valuable steer to the ways in which Christians should serve each other, because it means “one another”, “mutually” or “reciprocally” and is often used to describe our shared obligations — the responsibility that all Christians have towards one another. Our donors have certainly grasped that concept as they continue to support our vision with consistent generosity – they realise, as we all should do, that while many household incomes have improved over the last few years, the ‘recovery’ for some, is nothing more than a teasing meaningless word that bears no reality in their day to day lives. Geoff Scargill is Head of Charitable Services at Protestant Aid (see

Holy Trinity Church Westport

In aid of Church Organ Restoration

Sunday 15th April at 3pm Featuring DIVA VOCES Award winning female voice choir Conductor: Duncan Brickenden WESTPORT CHILDREN’S CHOIR Conductor: Eriko Hopkinson

CODA Male voice a capella group THE OCTAGON TRIO Patrick Dexter: Cello Pat Early: Violin Christian Cooke: Viola

Tickets â‚Ź10 Steve Brickenden 087 6961329

Harry, a West Highland Terrier, was rescued from the rocks last week by a very keen sighted fisherman. He was in such a state that from a distance he looked like a seal!! The second photo shows him after been shaved. His ears were very seriously infected and as a result he is probably going to be permanently deaf. His sight is fairly ok. He was covered in so much hair it was impossible to tell what breed of a dog he is. This is obviously an extreme case of neglect. Harry has received excellent care at the Western Veterinary Clinic in Clifden and is doing quite well now, but he needs a home or a long term fosterer. He is about eleven, possibly twelve and he has suffered. We at RCDR hope that somebody might be willing to give this old boy a chance to enjoy his remaining years. If you think you could offer

him a chance at restoring his faith in the human race, please ring 087 9616586 The Renvyle Cat & Dog Rescue fund raiser is at 10am on the 1st April. We always need help and support to run the RCADR and are looking for foster homes, so if you can foster a Dog or Cat please ring 087 9616586


Dear Members This Winter has been a hard one and I suspect that like myself you are all looking forward to some light and sunshine as the days lengthen and Spring makes its long- awaited appearance. We have much to look forward to! On Saturday 26th May we are holding a tea-party and Bring and Buy sale in the Bishop's House in Castlebar and since all MU members throughout the Diocese are invited, including our Indoor Members, this should be a lively and very special time together. From my own point of view this is my last year as Diocesan President as I am now completing my second term of office and six year stint, so this event, being held in our home, in a sense marks this. There will also be a change of positions in other MU Diocesan roles but more about all that later on the year! Our Diocesan service will be held this year, by kind invitation of Canon Derek Swan, in St George's Church Tobercurry at 4 pm. I ask members to make every effort to attend as again this is one of the few occasions when we can all join together to worship which is of course central to the work and witness of the MU organisation. This has been a very encouraging year for MU with some exciting projects in the pipeline and can I also remind clergy and Branch Chairwomen of our AFIA scheme which provides resources to enable people to very literally 'Get Away From It All' Please contact me or Mrs Mildred Gilmore if you feel you know a family or individual who could benefit. Meantime love to you all Alison Rooke

Mums in May 2018 Mums in May, Mothers' Union Triennial Fundraising project has enabled us to reach out into our communities and share the vision, the excitement and the support which Mothers’ Union brings to those who are most vulnerable in our society, both locally and globally.


S H D Pr v S


Funds raised have allowed us to: • Support families affected by Domestic Abuse and Homelessness. • Develop the ‘Away From It All’ scheme in many dioceses. • Provide training and support for Diocesan and AllIreland volunteers. • Support Family Days. • Raise awareness in the wider community of the work ofMothers’ Union both locally and globally. • Extend our giving to Mothers’ Union Worldwide and to the Centenary Fund.

E Cent

A huge thank you to everyone who supported our 2012 and 2015 programmes and we hope that you will have an opportunity to share in our 2018 schedule which will see members and friends take part in sponsored walks, fireside quizzes, craft competitions and or course the Tea Party! “Dear Lord…..” a new prayer resource from MU We are delighted to introduce a brand new prayer book from Mothers’ Union. ‘Dear Lord’ is a collection


Mothers Union

of over 150 prayers and reflections, contributed by Mothers’ Union members all over the world, offering words for every occasion to encourage and inspire, whether in public services or personal prayer time ‘I am delighted to commend this wonderful new resource

to you as an inspirational prayer tool.’ Lynne Tembey, Worldwide President, Mothers’ Union Price is just £3.00 / €3.50 To order please contact your local branch or order directly from

Tuam Killala & Achonry Report Mothers’ Union as a worldwide organization supports families in Ireland and across the world in a variety of ways.The Diocesan Prayer Vigil in association with the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-based Violence campaign took place in St. Nicholas Collegiate Church, Galway on Saturday 9th December. In continuance and furthering the outreach and education in relation to this campaign, after Sunday worship the next day, the congregation was shown a power-point presentation. A prayer tree and friendship bracelets were available in the church for the duration of the 16 days. Mothers Union, via the Galway Branch, is continuing to assist women who are moving from Osterely Lodge, the Cope Women’s Refuge Centre, into their own home.

individual quizzes and tea parties. The funds raised support the work of Mothers Union. Let’s get going!!!! Advance Notice • Holy Communion Christ Church, Dublin – Thursday 1stMarch at 11.15am. Members of Clogher Diocese will join TKA Members. • MU Diocesan Council – Saturday 21st April, Bishop’s House Castlebar at 10.30am. • MU Diocesan Service - Sunday 29th April, St George’s Church, Tubbercurry at 4.00pm • ‘Mums-in-May’ Tea Party –Saturday 26th May, Bishop’s House, Castlebar at 2.00pm.

This is a “Mums in May” fundraising year and in association with this and our current theme “In Mary Sumners Footsteps” we are all encouraged to Signed: Diocesan Fundraising & Communications participate as individuals and as branches in any one Co-ordinator. or more of fundraising ideas.These ideas are designed to suit everybody. They range from sponsored walks, knitting competitions, creative writing competitions,


Working Group

Joint Inter-Diocesan Working Group on Episcopal Ministry and Structures A meeting of the Inter-Diocesan Working Group was held in Gullanes Hotel, Ballinasloe on Wednesday 10th January. Fourteen members were present, including both bishops, seven members from Tuam, Killala and Achonry and five members from Limerick and Killaloe.

The meeting was opened with prayer by the Revd John Godfrey.

Reports were submitted by the two sub-committees appointed on Wednesday, 8th November:

Sub-committee ‘A’ had been charged with looking at various options for Area Bishops in the Anglican Communion. Three examples in the United Kingdom, one in New Zealand and one in Canada were being examined and it could be two months before the subcommittee would be in a position to report.The point was made that numbers and circumstances in the examples being considered were very different to our own and it would not be easy to find one to replicate in a united diocese of Tuam and Limerick.The question was posed ‘what would the united diocese look like with a single bishop?’

Sub-committee ‘B’ had been charged with making the case for an Area Bishop and had produced a written report. Their report recognised the progress that had been made to date and noted the similarities between the two dioceses. They faced similar challenges in ministry and mission and both laity and clergy in the two dioceses see their future as being together, although some parishes closer to Sligo might seek to explore closer relationships with Elphin Diocese.

There was a great deal of discussion on the subcommittee’s observation on the difficulties for a Diocesan Bishop in the new amalgamated diocese. It was felt that it was unrealistic to talk of travel time from Skreen to Tralee but rather from Limerick to Skreen or Limerick to Tralee.The possibility of accommodation being available to the bishop in the Tuam, Killala and Achonry portion of the new diocese was discussed. It was also emphasised that there was no need for the Bishop to be in attendance at every minor event in the Diocese. The importance of the Bishop’s ‘civic’ role in the City of Limerick was also emphasised.There was a

consensus that it was most unlikely that an Area Bishop was a real possibility. It was unlikely to gain the support of the House of Bishops and General Synod.

The meeting then went on to consider what was needed to make progress at General Synod 2018. Bishop Patrick and Bishop Kenneth would be having discussions with the Archbishops of Armagh and Dublin and the Assessor of General Synod. It was hoped that these discussions would lead to the drawing up of two resolutions to be put before both Diocesan Councils in February and approval for a Draft Bill to be put to General Synod 2018. At the meeting of the Diocesan Council of Tuam, Killala and Achonry on Thursday, 1st February 2018 Bishop Patrick, Dean Grimason and Archdeacon McWhirter reported on the discussions at the Inter-Diocesan meeting.

Two resolutions were then put to the Diocesan Council.The first was an agreement, in principle, to the amalgamation of the two united diocese at a future date, subject to a successful conclusion of the conversations. This resolution was passed with 21 members voting for the resolution, none against, and three abstentions.

The second resolution dealt with the possibility of an episcopal vacancy occurring in either diocese before the work on an amalgamation was complete. This would allow the relevant Archbishops to be empowered by General Synod to delay calling an Episcopal Electoral College. Such a delay would allow for the completion of the Joint Inter-Diocesan Conversations and for their recommendations, endorsed by both Diocesan Synods, to be brought before General Synod, potentially in 2019. This resolution was put to the meeting along with a Draft Bill which would give effect to such a delay to be brought to General Synod in May 2018. 21 members voted for this resolution, none voted against and three members abstained. Members were informed that the Diocesan Council of Limerick and Killaloe will consider both resolutions and the Draft Bill at their meeting later in February.

Joint Meeting of Diocesan Councils

A meeting of the Diocesan Councils of Tuam, Killala and Achonry and of Limerick and Killaloe will be held in the Lady Gregory Hotel, Gort on Saturday 28th April at 11am. All members are asked to note the date and make every effort to attend as this is an important opportunity to meet clergy and laity from our neighbouring diocese. Lunch will be provided. 10

Data Protection

Important Notice for all re Data Protection The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation is coming into effect on 25th May 2018. GDPR will affect us all as it replaces existing law on data protection and gives individuals more rights and protection in how their personal data is being used by organisations.

Personal data is information about a living person which is capable of identifying them, e.g. Name, date of birth, PPSN/NIN number and address.   

Parishes must comply with its requirements, just like any other charity or organisation.  If charities are not compliant, they can face a fine of up to 4% of their turnover or €20m, whichever is larger. Charities will face fines if they cannot tell individuals what information they are holding about them.  There are a number of steps to becoming compliant  and the RCB has developed an information pack to support


Quality Service for all decorating & painting requirements in both Residential & Commercial properties Glebe l Oughterard l Co Galway Contact Dermot: 087 2993660

you in doing this. This pack is available on the Parish Resources section of the website and includes a guide to GDPR; an Information Poster; compliance checklist; sample templates and forms. 

If you have any questions please contact Rebekah Fozzard, Manager – Special Projects, at:

Further information is also available from: • Data Protection Commissioner (Ireland)

• The Information Commissioner (UK)  

• European Parliament

FISH n TACKLE We can supply with all the Equipment to Catch them, but if that fails, You can get the finest quality Fish at Tiernan Brothers Foxford

CONTACT US T: 094-92567312 E: 11

Clergy and Readers Quiet Day

Clergy and Readers Quiet Day The clergy and readers of TKA met for their annual Quiet Day in Saint Mary's Cathedral in Tuam on 28th February.

It was a nasty day, weather wise, and many of those who had planned to attend stayed at home in deference to the snow and ice. But almost 30 brave


souls ventured to drive to Tuam for this day of reflection and contemplation.

After coffee, we started with a celebration of the Eucharist led by bishop Patrick and the Dean. Bishop Kenneth of Limerick then took over and directed our thoughts. Either side of an excellent lunch, his four talks encouraged us to revisit our vocation. Bishop Kenneth spoke about the support we received from family and friends and parishioners. He aksed us to consider the priviledge and responsibility of preaching and leading others in prayer and worship. He spoke about the wider context of our ministry to the local community and to those who are travelling on their faith journey by a different route than we have chosen. In all of this he used the contents of his robes case to

Clergy and Readers Quiet Day

illustrate his points in a easy manner which none less held us all captivated. By the time we finished the weather was beginning to close in so most headed home directly. But a brave

few stayed to chat over a quick cuppa provided by the Cathedral team who deserve our thanks for hosting us in their usual exemplary manner.

Ballina Churches Together

The Big Blue Bus!

On the 21st January last at the service for” Christian Unity “ held in St Muredach’s Cathedral  Ballina. The Big Blue Bus was commissioned and launched. It was lovely to see a large turnout from all four Churches including some people there from housing estates where we have been working. Printed on the outside of the Big Blue Bus is, ‘Mobile Community Centre’ and on the rear it states:  “The Big Blue Bus is a” Ballina Churches Together Initiative of the Church of Ireland, Roman Catholic Church, Presbyterian Church in Ireland,Methodist Church in Ireland in partnership with Church Army.”

At the event, the Catholic Bishop John Fleming said, “The four churches here in the Ballina area have a very good relationship and all agreed that we should have social outreach together in this area as a sign of our" common christian commitment and purpose,” “The problem was to identify what that would be. After years of surveys, research, meetings, and the forming and re-forming of committees, and now with the involvement of Church Army- Ballina Churches Together, has finally reached the stage with the launch of the "Big Blue Bus”.


Ballina Churches Together

Bishop Patrick Rooke of Tuam, Killala and Achonry said, “We have talked about having a drop-in centre for some time. On weighing up the costings and the availabilities of suitable properties, and whether people would  be keen to come from the estates around Ballina to a drop-in centre…we thought it would be more practical and sensible to have a vehicle to go out to where the people live which might prove a more suitable option”.



Over the past 22 months I have gathered volunteers from the four churches. We have been meeting, planning and praying.We hope to use the bus to bring people together and reach out to share the Gospel in interactive ways.  Such as music nights, puppet shows, workshops and prayer ministry. It has a lot of potential. There will also be a referral system in place linking those in need to a counsellor and to other agencies as required.



Carpentry Cast iron Leadwork Limework Masonry Sash windows HISTORIC ROOF REPAIR Ballinlig, Beltra Co Sligo M: 087–2447542 E:

Silage making • Round Bale Silage Whole Crop Silage • Ploughing /re–seeding Slurry/Muck spreading • Lime Spreading Tree Felling • Hedgecutting Tree surgery • Plant Hire

• Mobile: 087 2644518 087 9254255 087 2679919

TKA Youth

Dundrum on ice This trip, which had been scheduled for 2nd January unfortunately didn’t go ahead due to lack of interest. There were only 8 young people who had signed up for the trip, which meant the difficult decision was taken to cancel the outing. We hope to run this event net year and will do all we can to ensure it goes ahead. CIYD youth forum On the 20th of January the Church of Ireland Youth Department (CIYD), held a youth forum in City North Hotel, Gormanstown Co. Meath.Young people from nearly every diocese attended. Many Diocesan Officers and youth leaders were also present. Amy Sherlock went to represent the young people of TKA and she writes:

questions and shows how deeply our young people want to become more involved in the church. The question now falls back on us. What are we doing to help them fulfil these aspirations? Order of Malta training Both Revd Jen and Steve Brickenden completed an 8 week Order of Malta accredited First Aid Responder course in Aghagower at the end of last year. The course, which was concluded with a written and practical exam, means that our first aid training is up to date and while we hope we never have to use this knowledge at a youth event or trip, we’ll be on hand if needed. The certificates were presented in Aghagower on 21st February. Emma Rodrigues from BCT also completed this course.

The conference was opened by Archbishop of Armagh, the Most Revd Dr Richard Clarke. The Archbishop also launched ‘Fuel’ which is a resource for young people to track their thoughts and journey with Christ throughout Lent. Captain Nic Shepherd of Church Army and Mrs Sally Shepherd ran the activities on the day.They organised engaging tasks which encouraged young people to discuss issues that affect them, ways to support them in their spiritual journey and their vision of the church for the future. Towards the end of the forum there was a feedback session which detailed young people’s aspirations for the church in the future. Many topics were highlighted including, greater equality in the church, involvement of young people in church services, provision for people with disabilities, welcome for groups on the fringes, ways for young people to express their faith, increased variety for youth groups, all age sermons, greater use of technology and more leadership opportunities for young people. It was heartening to see detailed responses to these


Diary dates The next few months are busy with events which we hope as many of you as possible will be able to support. Details below: Easter Sunday Our annual Easter Sunday dawn service will be held on Dunmoran Strand at 7.30am, followed by breakfast

TKA Youth

in Skreen Schoolhouse. We look forward to seeing you there as we celebrate what is a most special day in the church year.


Diocesan Confirmation Day

Confirmation day Our confirmation day will be held at Croagh Patrick on Saturday 21st April, meeting at 10.30am for an 11.00am start. Wet weather activities are organised in case of inclement weather. The day concludes at 3.00pm. Fun day The TKA diocesan fun day will be held on Saturday 5th May. This year we are planning to go on a trip to Inishbofin, which offers several looped walks, great opportunities for birdwatching, bicycle hire and a heritage museum amongst other things. More details will be available to rectors for publication once the ferry from Cleggan Pier has been arranged. Diocesan cycle This year sees a return to the diocesan cycle, after we went walking last year. We plan to cycle the 10km ‘Monasteries of the Moy’ greenway from Ballina to Killala and back again. More information will be available to rectors nearer the time, along with sponsorship forms. Kenya Talk Steve Brickenden presenting a talk on Kenya in Holy Trinity National School, Westport.

CROAGH PATRICK CLIMB Saturday 21st April 2018

Meet in car park at the base of Croagh Patrick 10.30a.m. for preparations for climb at 11.00am.

Refreshments in hall above café in car park. Games and talk after with Bishop Patrick.

This is not an easy climb, light lunch in back pack, good walking shoes/boots, water and stick.

Contact Steve Brickenden

Please tick if you do not want photographs of your child included in future Diocesan publications


Address: Tel:




Special dietary / medication requirements: CONSENT FORM (To be completed by parents/guardians of participants under 18) I confirm that I give my permission for to participate in the Tuam Killala and Achonry Diocesan Youth Council event. In the event of my son / daughter being ill or injured so that medical attention becomes necessary, I hereby authorise the leader in charge to sign on my behalf any forms of consent required. Signed:



Contact No:


TKA Diocesan Easter Dawn Service

DUNMORAN STRAND Sunday 1st April 2018 at 7.30am

HOLY COMMUNION ON THE BEACH CELEBRATED BY THE BISHOP Followed by a hearty breakfast at Skreen Schoolhouse - All welcome!

D I O C E S E O F T U A M , K I L L A L A A N D A C H O N RY

Advertise your Business with us Full Page Half page Quarter page Single column

Single Issue

4 issues

150 75 50 35

500 250 165 125

Contact: Revd Stan Evans T: 095 21147

• Most suitably Appointed Funeral Parlour Facilities Available • All Preparations & Arrangement Made • Repatriation to and from Ireland • Cremation Service • Member of I.A.F.D. Telephone (091) 582349 Fax (091) 584469 Funeral Parlour: Munster Avenue, Galway

VxÄxuÜtàx |Ç áàçÄx tà à{x TuuxçzÄxÇ VtáàÄx [ÉàxÄ What better place to celebrate your Connemara Wedding than with us at Abbeyglen Castle. Our packages are fully customizable, to give you the Castle Wedding you always dreamed of. Our Castle Gardens make a fantastic setting for your wedding photos, a lasting memory of an unforgettable day. Why not extend your stay and let us spoil you for a honeymoon you will never forget. We offer wedding packages from October to February, and cater for parties of up to 100 people. e Abbeyglen Castle Hotel is located on the aptly named Sky Road overlooking the quaint alpine like town of Clifden, Connemara. e castle is nestled in the romantic setting of the Twelve Bens with beautiful views overlooking Clifden Bay, offering you a truly unique location to celebrate your special day. e warm and friendly staff is always at hand to make your stay special, guaranteeing you an unforgettable experience.

For information please call Abbeyglen at 095-21201 /

Abbeyglen Castle Hotel S K Y ROA D





Festival of Flowers & Memorabilia 200th Anniversary Celebrations

Taunagh Parish Church, Riverstown, Co. Sligo

17th to 19th August 2018

PLEASE JOIN US FOR THIS VERY SPECIAL WEEKEND OF EVENTS, INCLUDING: Festival of Flowers and Memorabilia in Taunagh Parish Church and the Cooper Memorial Hall Friday 17th August: 10 am to 8 pm Saturday 18th August: 10 am to 5 pm

Country & Gospel Music Concert with James Kilbane Saturday 18th August at 8 pm in Taunagh Parish Church Tickets: €15

€5 entry €5 (tea/coffee, sandwich & traybake)

Bicentenary Service of Thanksgiving Sunday 19th August at 4 pm in Taunagh Parish Church



Ballylahan Bridge, Foxford, Co. Mayo Tel. (094) 9256221


Quinn car sales

Labane Ardrahรกn Galway

John Quinn

M: 087 225 5411 T: 091 635 231

E: W:

The HiddenTreasure in the Heart of Connemara Cashel House Hotel

Steal away to the perfect place for that Special Break, Celebration or an idyllic Connemara Wedding Special 2 to 5 day breaks available Open for Bar Lunch, Afternoon Tea and Dinner Daily Gift Vouchers are available and make the ideal present for Birthdays, Anniversaries, Special Occasions T: 095 31001 • F: 095 31077 • E:


suffering from financial difficulties which are causing hardship and distress? Pact is an accredited agency under the 2010 Adoption Act to provide the following services: • Intercountry Adoption Assessment Service • Post Placement Report Service for Intercountry Adoption • Domestic Adoption Assessment Service

Help is at hand

• Post Adoption Service for domestic Adoption

Talk to your Rector about what relief Protestant Aid can provide, or contact Protestant Aid directly on

• A Pre–Adoption Foster–Care Service.

01 668 4298

Phone: 01 2962200 Fax: 01 2964049 Email:

g d.or i a t n testa o r p . w ww

Parish News Digest

ACHONRY GROUP St Crumnathy’s Cathedral, Achonry St George’s, Tubbercurry Rathbarron Priest-in-charge: Canon Derick Swann T: 071 919 7097 M: 087 067 5880

Congratulations Congratulations and best wishes to Robert Hall and Fiona McHugh who were married in Rathbarron Church on Saturday, 16th December 2017. We wish them every blessing and happiness in their married life together!

Sympathy Sympathy is extended to Jean and Raymond Goulden Thanks on the death of Jean’s mother Iris. Iris had been in a We are very grateful to those who decorated both St. Nursing Home in Dublin for some time.We pray that George’s and Rathbarron so tastefully for our Almighty God will sustain and comfort Jean and the Christmas services. The services were all very well family circle in their loss. attended and the seasonal decorations added greatly to our worship. Easter Vestries Annual Easter Vestries will be held as follows: Tubbercurry - Tuesday, 20th March at 8pm in the Schoolhouse Rathbarron - Wednesday, 21st March at 8pm in the Coach-house All Registered Vestry-persons should make every effort to be present. Holy Week and Easter Services Good Friday, 30th March Services in Rathbarron at 10.30am in Rathbarron and 2pm in St. George's Tubbercurry Boys from 1st Achonry Boys Brigade pictured with their Christmas craft work

Gifts in memory of John Allen and Sarah Jane (Jenny),Taylor A brass Alms Dish and collecting plates were dedicated during the Holy Communion Service in St. George’s on Sunday, 31st December 2017.These were the gift of their son Alan, daughter-in-law Alison and their family. There was a large attendance for the service and it was wonderful to see so many of John and Jenny’s extended family present. Refreshment were provided by the family in the Schoolhouse at the conclusion of the service.

Easter Day, Sunday 1st April 10am Holy Communion in Rathbarron 11.30am Holy Communion in St. George's Tubbercurry Marriage 16th December – in Rathbarron Church Robert Frederick Hall, Templehouse, Ballymote and Fiona Margaret McHugh, Caragh, Collaney Burial 27th December Richard Lawson, St. Anthony’s Crescent, Tubbercurry 4th January Iris Nolan, late of Walkinstown, Dublin 23

Parish News Digest

Carrowbeg House – a particularly simple and encouraging interchurch Lenten exercise.

AUGHAVAL GROUP Holy Trinity, Westport Christ Church, Castlebar Turlough St Thomas’, Dugort Rector: Canon Val Rogers Tel: 098 25127

Our own Cloud of Witnesses: Great saints are honoured in our community’s calendar between now and our next Tidings issue. Among them, Patrick, Joseph, Thomas Cranmer, Oscar Romero, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Mark, Philip and James, Mathias, Barnabas, Jn Baptist, Peter and Paul. Let me park the shameful lack of great women in the list; all I want to say here is that consciously or unconsciously we revere and relate to those whose lives speak to our own and our society’s situation, and whose stories get the best out of us. It strengthened me to purposefully gather and attend to my own cloud of witnesses, from all sorts of cultures, religions and eras, including my own. In my case it was a late-night, kitchen-table, pen-and-ink process over a period, the list then sifted and updated over the years. Fred Pratt Green’s hymn says it well – Rejoice in God's saints, today and all days: A world without saints forgets how to praise. In loving, in living, they prove it is true: their way of self-giving, Lord, leads us to you.

Tell it like it is

Poor, brave Jn Baptist...

Confirmations for our Group will be on Sun May 27 at 11.30am by Bishop Patrick in Holy Trinity Westport. For our seven confirmees from Turlough and Westport, this programme: • Parents’ Meeting 7.30pm Tue Feb 27 at in Rectory, • Nine Classes 7.30pm Tuesdays for our young candidates, led in the Rectory by Maebh O’Herlihy March 6, 13 and 20; April 10, 17 and 24; May 1, 8 and 15. • Presentation of Bibles 8pm Sat Mar 24 in Turlough Service • Diocesan Gathering 11am Sat Apl 21 for Confirmees at Murrisk and the Reek • Rehearsal 4pm [time TBC] Sat May 26 in Holy Trinity

St Patrick, C of I Larne,Wilhelmina Geddes

Time with the Scriptures: St Mary’s priests and people in Westport invite us to join them in a lectio divina time with the scriptures on Wednesdays at 7pm in 24

Green shoots: • Earth Hour will be marked on Mar 24 Sat from 8pm. Homes and businesses are invited to turn off their lights to show a shared concern for a sustainable environment. There will be public events that evening in Westport on this subject – details to be announced. • The National EcoCongregation Award 2018 won by Westport’s churches will be presented on Sun Apl 22 at 11.30am in Holy Trinity its Chairperson, Brid McAuley Smith. Refreshments after church today will be in St Mary’s Carrowbeg House

Parish News Digest

Mar 11 Sun Mar 18 Sun

Mothering Sunday St Patrick +461

HOLY WEEK Mar 24 Sat Palm Sun Eve 8.00pm Turlough Mar 25 Sun Palm Sunday 10.00am Castlebar, 11.30am Westport Mar 29 Thu Maundy Thurs 7.30pm Westport Mar 30 Fri Good Friday 11.30am Westport Mar 31 Sat Easter Vigil 8.00pm Turlough Apl 01 Sun Easter Day 10.00am Castlebar, 11.30am Westport, and 3pm Dugort

Jun 10 Sun

11.30am Gospel Music Service within Westport Folk and Bluegrass Festival

Jun 03 Sun

Weekly summertime 11.30am Services begin in Dugort – till end of August.

Four great characters from our Group, Dickie Mairs, Annie Gallagher, George Meade and Harriet Bourke, have gone to God since our last issue. Each had a great story, each was greatly loved, each deserves a picture. The one available photo is of Harrie and her late husband Bertie.

May 13 Sun Ascension May 20 Sun Pentecost May 27 Sun Trinity Confirmations this day in Holy Trinity – see above Holy Trinity music: Apl 15 Sun 3.00pm Diva Voces in Concert, supported by CODA, Westport Youth Choir and string trio: Patrick Early, Patrick Dexter + Christian. 10 euros - for organ restoration Apl 29 Sun 11.30am Belgrave Singers sing the Mozart Missa Brevis in B flat major

Bertie + Harriet Bourke


Ireland’s longest established fully insured steeplejack company, our rope access techniques have evolved from old traditional steeplejack skills.


Roofing contractors with over 60 years experience specialising in restoration of high architectural buildings.

Lightning Protection

We are the largest installer of lightning protection and earthing systems in Ireland.


Our stonework expertise and extensive history of restoration has earned us many conservation accolades.

Dublin Office: Balheary Road, Swords, Dublin, Ireland. Tel. +353 (1) 840 1515 Fax +353 (1) 840 2919 Email: Belfast Office: 3A Upper Dunmurry Lane, Belfast, N. Ireland. Tel: +44 2890 351515 Fax +44 2890 351991 Email:

Parish News Digest


Holy Trinity, Ballisodare St Paul’s, Collooney Emlaghfad, Ballymote Rector: Revd Dr Andrew Ison Tel: 071 9133217

Mother’s Union - Ballisodare Branch Annual Lunch 2018 began with a new venture for our annual lunch when we joined and shared with our neighbouring branches in Elphin diocese for a grand lunch at the Sligo Park Hotel. It was most enjoyable, as not only was there great craic and banter at the tables but there was an after lunch quiz and party pieces as well. All went home with happy faces and a gift pack of homemade cookies to boot!

Life Stories Our short course which explores how Christianity works in the nitty-gritty of real life by watching inspiring stories of people who have put the teachings of Jesus into practice and seeing how faith changes their life and their world was a great success in engaging in real stories with real people of faith. St Paul’s School School Nativity Play: The Match Girl's Christmas While it may seem that Christmas is long gone the school production of ‘The Match Girl's Christmas’ in church just before Christmas was as usual, a great and moving twist on the nativity story. The ‘Match Girl's Christmas’ reminded us of the need to care for the poorest in our society, as well as pointing to the love and hope that Christmas brings. Well done to all the children that took part!

Regular Meetings In January our first meeting of the year was to plan the months ahead and we kicked off in February with a talk from our Rector, Andrew Ison on “Sex, “Drugs” and “Rock and Roll. The talk was based on the 1977 song by Ian Drury and the Blockheads that launched the phrase into our vocabulary and looked at a Christian response to these three topics in society today. We are looking forward to Canon Doris Clements in April telling about her participation in the diocesan trip to Kenya. In addition in May we are hoping for evening sunshine on 17th May when it is planned to don our walking shoes in support of “Mums in May” fundraising. World Day of Prayer The “World Day of Prayer” this year took place in St Brigid’s Church, Corhownagh on the outskirts of Ballisodare with a great ecumenical group of people coming together, united in prayer for the world. Up and coming events Lady Day Service will take place in Emlaghfad Church, Ballymote on 22nd March at 8pm Myrtle Nairn Occasional Offices This has been a quiet time for occasional offices across the group but we remember those at this time are recalling an anniversary of the loss of a loved one. Our prayers go out to the family of Ballisodare resident, Andrew Ellis whose mother Kate, died in England with Andrew being too unwell to attend the funeral.


Thank you to everyone who made donations at the Carol Service and Nativity play. The school raised €267.95 for Protestant Aid and €267.95 for St.Vincent De Paul. Peace Proms 2018 The children from 2nd - 6th class travelled to the National Indoor Arena in Blanchardstown to the rehearsal for Peace Proms 2018. Peace Proms

Parish News Digest

engages children in music and enriches their lives through exceptional musical experiences and performances. The Peace Proms celebrates culture and diversity and promotes peace, unity and tolerance through music. The children were dancing and singing along with hundreds of other children from all around Ireland. Lots of singing in preparation for the Peace Proms concert that occurred on Saturday 3rd February! Also, school members will be performing with the Cross Border Orchestra of Ireland and a host of top soloists, making history for our school!

Spelling Bee Marie O’Donnell represented St. Paul’s in the Sligo County Final of the Easons Spelling Bee on 21st February. The photo shows Marie with her supporters.

Pancake Day We prepared for Lent with a celebration of pancakes in Shrove Tuesday and event enjoyed by all.

Up and Coming Events Eggplosion, Saturday March 31st, 10.00am-12.30pm Our annual Easter activity including games, crafts, bible stories, Easter egg hunt and lots more! Check out our website for further details.


Parish News Digest

GRAY’S guest house

  

   

 

 PO

Self–catering available • Special rates available for groups of 8

DUGORT, ACHILL ISLAND CO. MAYO e–mail: phone: (00353) 098 43244 www.grays–


 B

 

 

Parish News Digest

GALWAY & KILCUMMIN Collegiate Church of St Nicholas Kilcummin Church, Oughterard Rector: The Ven Gary Hastings Tel: 091 521914

Funerals We sympathise with Helga Leonard, on death of her brother Gero Muehlpfordt in November, and also with Ronan de Burca on the loss of his mother Teresa at Christmas. Please also remember Pauline Ellis’ family, and Eni Adekeye’s family as their anniversaries fall at this time.

was necessary on the door once again! The community Carol Service in Kilcummin raised €850 for the Vincent De Paul and Meals on wheels and was very well attended. Many thanks to all who provided refreshments on those evenings, and all who decorated both churches so beautifully. A service organised before Christmas in St Nicholas’ by the Scouts in Galway, with over 200 attending, was to greet and spread the Peace Flame from Bethlehem. The various Scout troops took the flame back to their own homes and parish churches.

On 14th January, a visiting choir, Pacific University Chamber Singers from Oregon, sang the 11am service, and gave a short recital afterwards in the church.Very impressive! Also in January, members of the Vestry and Brent Parker, 13th Jan in St Nicholas’. A well known people from other areas of our parish life underwent classical composer living in Achill, Brent received a fire training. You’ll hear more about that! On 25th of respectful and prayerful musical send off. Our prayers Jan in the Methodist/Presbyterian church we had our are with Shiela and Connor, and all the family. annual Service for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, this time a healing service and many thanks to Rev Helen for her hospitality. Evensong for Candlemas Holy Matrimony: on 4th Feb was very pleasant, and beautifully sung. On Robyn Ingram and Ross Doran. St Nicholas’ 28th 11th Feb, the new Bishop of Galway diocese, Bishop Dec. Brendan Kelly, was installed at a special service in the The Festive season was survived without damage or Cathedral. Our best wishes to him in his new see! On injury. The initial onslaught began with the Christmas 13th Feb the rector was invited to be at the Seas Suas Fayre, which raised a record amount, over €18,000, awards in NUIG. The programme is facilitated by the and a hearty congratulations to all who had a hand in Chaplaincy in NUI Galway, and offers workshops on it at whatever level! Very impressive work, done with contemporary issues such as developing positive a good heart. The Advent Procession on Advent mental health, cyberbullying and suicide prevention Sunday was once again a beautiful and moving service, among other topics. It’s designed to equip students to sung by the Parish Choir, and our compliments to successfully manage the challenges experienced in their trainers and keepers! daily life and to help them assist others. A great idea. On the 22nd Feb, the Rector attended the Anatomy On 7th of Dec the Rector was asked, along with the Service in NUIG where the medical students conduct other hospital chaplains, to the opening of a a service of thanksgiving and remembrance for all bereavement room in the maternity department. A those who have given their remains to medical sadly necessary thing, and very well planned and set science. A very moving experience. Our annual out. On the same day, the School Carol service was Children’s party was held in the school on 18th Feb, held in St Nicholas’, an impressive and impeccable and was a great success and many thanks to the social musical nativity, a credit to teachers and young people committee and all who organised it! alike. On 9th December, the Mothers’ Union organised a Diocesan Vigil service in St Nicholas’ for By now, the word that we’re going to be moving to the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender- Based Killiney Parish in Dublin in the middle of April will have Violence, Sinéad Fahy was our speaker and there were got round so this won’t be a shock to many! We’ve refreshments afterwards. Many thanks to all involved been in Galway and Kilcummin for nearly 9 years, and in setting it up. the Rector has said all he’s going to say, and is now Our Civic Carol service in St Nicholas’ and Carols Round the Christmas Tree between them raised over €6000 for various charities, and the ‘House Full’ sign

repeating himself. My final service in the parish will be on Easter Sunday.We’ll get the chance to say goodbye to people individually before then all being well.We’ve been in these dioceses for 25 years now, and it’s time


Parish News Digest

to move on. This has been a major part of the life of our family, and we’ll miss being in the West. Many thanks, and God’s blessing on all those who we have worked with, prayed with, lived with, helped and annoyed during that time. Go mbeannaí agus go gcumhdaí Dia sibh san am atá le theacht! Forthcoming Attractions! The Bishop will be coming to conduct a confirmation service on the 20th of May. Does your child intend to come to the confirmation classes this year? This is when a person takes their baptismal promises in their own name, and lays claim to the Christian faith, so the decision should be informed and well thought out by both parents and child. Classes will be held in the Parochial School at Waterside, on Thursday afternoons at 3.00pm, beginning on the 12th of April. Classes will take 35 mins approx and will be taught by Mrs Walsh. There will be a very short meeting for parents after the 11am service on 11th March. Please arrange for at least one parent to be present on that day if possible. If not, please send names and contacts to the rector so that you can be included on the list.

Easter Services: Palm Sunday: Kilcummin, Holy Communion, 9.30. St Nicholas’, Holy Communion, 11am.

Maundy Thurs: St Nicholas’, Holy Communion. 8pm

Good Friday: Kilcummin, 12 noon. St Nicholas’, The Way of the Cross with the Augustinian Parish. 12 noon.

Easter Eve:

Easter Day:

St Nicholas’, Holy Communion, Service of Light. 9pm

Kilcummin, Holy Communion, 11am St Nicholas’, Holy Communion, 11am

KILLALA St Patrick’s Cathedral, Killala St John’s, Ballycastle (Dunfeeney) St Mary’s, Crossmolina Priest-in-charge: The Revd Jennifer McWhirter Tel: 096 31384

It is hard to believe as I sit here writing that spring is on the way, and Christmas seems like a distant memory. My newly planted borders, although frost encrusted this morning, are starting to produce the first signs of life, with green shoots peaking up from the bulbs planted last year. Some daffodil bulbs planted during the winter aren’t faring as well, as some bird or other has dug them up and proceeded to try to eat them. If anybody knows who the culprit might be, perhaps you could let me know!!! I love this time of year, looking forward to all the signs of new life as the earth begins to produce in abundance. My thoughts are with all farmers who are busy in what the Archdeacon calls ‘labour wards.’ It is a busy time of year and I trust and pray all would be well with your livestock in the coming weeks. For today, I am content to enjoy the sunshine after such a lot of rain. Ballycastle During the past few months we have replaced the kneelers and pew runners in Ballycastle thanks in part to an anonymous donation. This has brightened the church considerably and made services more comfortable for parishioners. There is considerable 30

Parish News Digest

work to be done to repair the tower and this will, all being well, be carried out over the next while.

St John’s Dunfeeny - 10.00am St Patrick’s Cathedral, Killala - 10.00am St Mary’s, Crossmolina - 12 noon

Freewill offering It has been pointed out at Diocesan Council that some churches are not yet benefitting from tax efficient giving. Killala Union has now registered all three parishes for this scheme and it will mean increased income for the union. Once you have given €250 or more in any given year to the parish, and are still paying income tax, your giving is tax eligible. It costs you nothing and will not affect your tax status. It means that the parishes can claim a rebate on monies donated which is never a bad thing!! If you’d like the parish to be able to claim this on your giving, please ask a treasurer for a form to fill in.

I would also encourage anyone interested to come to the dawn service at 7.30am on Dunmoran Strand. This is a diocesan service and is well worth attending, and is followed by breakfast in Skreen schoolhouse.

Confirmation classes Confirmation classes are being run jointly with Kilmoremoy Union this year. Classes will run at the rectory in Ballina on 18th and 25th March and 8th, 15th and 22nd April from 3.00-4.00pm and in St Michael’s, Ballina on Good Friday, 30th March, from 4.00-5.00pm. Confirmation will be on Sunday 6th May, see more information below. If anyone is interested in confirmation classes please see Revd Jen. Preacher On Sunday 11th February we were pleased to welcome Steve Brickenden as our guest speaker in both Killala and Crossmolina. He spoke about his time in Kenya with the TKA team last November and how this has impacted him. We’d like to thank him for making the journey to be with us on what was a very snowy morning. Jam jar appeal This year once again we will be running the jam jar scheme to raise money for the Maji Appeal. Each parish union or group has been tasked by the diocese with raising €1000 by the end of this year for this appeal and at the most recent Select Vestry meeting it was agreed that we would once again run the jam jar collections during Lent. I would ask everyone to take part in this appeal and bring your jam jars to church on Easter Sunday. Easter services We are pleased that Bishop Patrick will once again be in Killala on Easter Sunday, which will allow all three churches to have an Easter Sunday service. Service times are as follows:

Dates for the diary Lady day MU service - Wednesday 14th March in Killanley Parish Church at 8.00pm Messy Church - Good Friday, 30th March, in St Michael’s, Ballina 10.00-11.30am. Open to all children of national School age. Mothers’ Union enrolment service - Sunday 22nd April in St Michael’s, Ballina. Confirmation (joint service with Kilmoremoy Union) - Sunday 6th May, 11.00am in St Anne’s Church, Easkey From the registers Christian Burial Harry Ryan, Ballysokeery, Killala, aged 71. Saturday 2nd December 2017 at 1.00pm in Killala Cathedral followed by interment in Mullafarry graveyard. Lily Foster, Newtownwhite, Killala, aged 91.Tuesday 9th January 2018 at 2.00pm in Killala Cathedral, followed by interment in Ballysokeery graveyard. “Promoted to glory.”

KILMOREMOY UNION St Michael’s, Ballina (Kilmoremoy) Killanley Church, Castleconnor Kilglass, St Anne’s, Easkey Rector:Ven. Stephen McWhirter Tel: 096 60829 & 085 875 9921. www.kilmoremoy.killala.

It’s been a very fast start to the new year and with only one week of ‘ordinary time’ between the seasons of Epiphany and Lent, Easter will be upon us in no time.The evenings are stretching and the first signs of Spring have appeared. In St Michael’s we look forward to the arrival of insects to our newly installed Bug Hotel, which was kindly constructed and donated by Mr. Peter McKenna and the Men’s Shed, Ballina. Who knows we may have our own honey soon!


Parish News Digest

Over Lent we hope to be supporting the Bishops’ Appeal ‘jars4journeys’ campaign, by which, in supporting environmental projects through Bishops Appeal, we hope to in some way compensate for our own carbon footprint by putting a coin or note in a jar every time we make a journey.

I will be having my usual ‘sit in’ in St Michael’s from Good Friday to Easter Day and look forward to your visits and support over the weekend. In Holy Week itself we have a full programme of services, noted below, and I would encourage as many of you as possible to attend some or all of these services, as there is a service in each parish throughout Holy Week. Our Readers will be leading or taking part in these services. Services also take place each Tuesday night during Lent at 8.00pm in St Michael’s. There will be different services each week and this time offers our Readers opportunity for further training. We are delighted to have been able to invite Arthur Sweeney from St Patrick’s, Killala, as he continues his training to be a parish reader - the first service in Lent was lead by the Revd. Jen and Arthur.

of Drumcliffe Parish, is the coordinator of Church Army in Ireland. After the service the congregation moved into the carpark for the launch and blessing of BCT Big Blue Bus. We can look forward to seeing Emma and her team of volunteers around the area in the coming weeks. Please do look out for the bus and call in to see Emma when you see her around the town.

Shortly after this on the 8th February a good crowd gathered in the Manor Hotel for the BCT Table Quiz organised by Caroline Morrow and Mike Herron, both members of the BCT management committee. Mr John Cummins hosted the evening as Quiz Master and a great night was had by all who attended.

Preachers Over the last few week we have been blessed with having guest preachers in the Union. Firstly Steve Brickenden came to reflect on the TKA team’s time in Kenya and in his reflection related his time there to Moses going up the mountain. Bishop Patrick preached in Kilglass, Killanley and St Michael’s on the First Sunday of Lent and encouraged us in our acts of It would be remiss of me not to take this opportunity self denial over the period, including our support for to thank our Parish Readers for all they do Bishops Appeal with the jars4journeys. The following throughout our Union, and in the individual parishes, week the Revd. Jason Kernaghan, who is Rector of in support of the congregations and worship. I value Eglantine Parish in the diocese of Connor, attended their personal support greatly and enjoy the collegial worship and preached in St Anne’s, Killanley and St dimension to ministry within the Kilmoremoy Union. Michael’s. Jason enjoyed a long weekend in the Kilmoremoy Union meeting parishioners and engaging in a context of ministry very different from his own. Confirmation Confirmation Classes begin for those involved this Jason enjoyed his time here and we enjoyed hosting year in the Kilmoremoy Rectory each Sunday him in a blustery West of Ireland weekend. afternoon from Sunday 18th March from 3-4pm. Our Service this year will take place in St Anne’s, Easkey, Farewell to Gary and Caitríona on Sunday 6th May at 11.00am. If you wish to be It was a surprise to hear that Ven. Gary and Caitríona confirmed this year please do speak with the Rector. will shortly be leaving us to minister in Holy Trinity, Killiney. They will be missed here in TKA but we wish them every blessing in this, a busy time of organisation RTE Broadcast After our successful broadcast on RTE Radio last year and packing. RTE have been in contact again inviting us to record a broadcast for television.This service will be recorded Parish Register in the RTE studio’s in Dublin on Sunday 27th May and Christian Burial broadcast on Sunday 10th June. We’ll be looking for 22nd December 2017 Arthur John Wills, aged 86, support for a choir, with Clergy and Readers from Ballyholan, Ballina. Service conducted by Ven. Stephen McWhirter and Revd. Canon Doris Clements in St both Kilmoremoy and Killala leading worship. Michael’s, Ballina, interment afterwards in the churchyard. Week of Prayer for Christian Unity & BCT We enjoyed an ecumenical service in St Muredach’s Cathedral for the Week of prayer for Christian Unity 3rd February 2018 William Ivan Walker, aged 87, on Sunday 21st January. This service was attended by Farrangarode, Ballina. Service conducted by Ven. both Bishop Patrick and Bishop John along with Stephen McWhirter and Revd. Canon Doris Clements members of the clergy and lay leaders from Ballina in St Michael’s, Ballina, interment afterwards in and the surrounding area.The speaker for the evening Killanley churchyard. was the Ven. Capt. Isaac Hanna who, as well as rector


Parish News Digest

Dates for the Diary Killanley, Castleconnor Mother’s Union Ladies Day Service 14th March, 8.00pm

Messy Church Good Friday Friday 30th March, 10.00am A morning of fun and activity, singing and the Easter Story for all children in the community of National School age.

Holy Week Monday St Anne’s, Easkey


Tuesday Kilglass Parish 8.00pm, Killanley, Castleconnor 8.00pm, St Michael’s, Ballina 8.00pm,

STRAID PARISH, FOXFORD & CLAREMORRIS Priest–in–charge: Canon Andrea Wills Tel: 094 9256403; Mobile 086 261 7572 Foxford: 10.00 a.m. every Sunday Claremorris: 12 noon in McWilliam Park Hotel – 1st Sunday of the month

Christmas Services: There was standing room only for the Carol Service on 17th December with the Brass Band. Quite a sight for us! This event really brings the whole community together in a very special way. Thank you to all who took part.

St Michael’s, Ballina Wednesday Wednesday 28th March, 8.00pm Tenebrae Service, a celebration of the passion of the cross and the extinguishing of the light. Maundy Thursday Thursday 29th March, 8.00pm A celebration of the institution of the Lord’s Supper Good Friday Messy Church Last Three Hours

Easter Day St Anne’s, Easkey Kilglass Parish Killanley, Castleconnor St Michael’s, Ballina Easter Vestry Easter Vestry Select Vestry HC

Friday 30th March 10.00am - 11.30am 12 noon - 3.00pm

11.00am, Holy Communion 9.30am, Holy Communion 10.45am Holy Communion 12 noon Holy Communion Tuesday 10th April, 8.00pm Monday 16th April, 8.00pm in St Michael’s

Songs of Praise St Michael’s, Ballina Sunday 15th April, 7.30pm An ecumenical service of hymn singing from the congregations and choirs throughout Ballina and the surrounding area. MU enrolment GFS service

Sunday 22nd April Speaker Alison Rooke

Confirmation St Anne’s, Easkey

Sunday 6th May, 11.00am


Parish News Digest

The Christmas Eve Service in the McWilliam Park Hotel proved to have a wider appeal than perhaps expected. We had a beautiful Christmas garland and candles. An atmosphere of prayerfulness, anticipation and upliftedness was present even in a hotel room. The time – 6 p.m. seemed to suit many people. Christmas Day encourages everyone into their finery and Foxford church was also tastefully decorated for all the festivities. Thank you for all the help. It was an honour to be asked to assist at the Revenue Commissioners’ annual Christmas Mass with Fr. Chas Guthrie in Davitt House and then join them for a delicious lunch. Thank you to Caroline Boyle for making the arrangements and providing the stunning hand knitted crib. Week of Prayer for Christian Unity The service for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity for the Cluster Group was hosted by Fr. Padraig Costello in St. Michael’s Church, Foxford on 18th January. The preacher was Bishop Brendan Kelly and it was his last duty in Foxford before his installation as Bishop of Galway.


And so it was an honour to be part of 2,500 strong congregation when Bishop Brendan was installed as Bishop of Galway in the Cathedral on 11th February. A memorable day filled with pomp, ceremony, wonderful music and yet humility. We wish him every blessing in this new phase on his journey with God. In Memoriam Trevor John Fortes from England retired to Ireland ostensibly because of his love of fishing but he so embraced the Irish way of life and was so busy with other things he hardly had any time for serious fishing. He was out cycling with his Cycling Club on the morning of 21st January when he became ill. Despite all the expert care on the spot and quick arrival at hospital he unfortunately slipped peacefully away later that day aged 67. His funeral service took place in O’Hora’s Funeral Home, Kiltimagh. To his wife Susan, his sons Oliver and Oscar, step children Nicola and Philip and grandchildren Oliver and Aaron we send our prayers and our love on your sad loss. Pride of Place Winner: The Fr. Peyton Centre was the venue for a wonderful evening of celebration on 21st January to mark Attymass winning the overall award in Category 1 in

Parish News Digest

the Pride of Place Competition for the 32 counties. It really is a wonderful achievement for a small community and we send our congratulations to all involved who worked so hard. Upcoming dates: 11th March – Mothering Sunday – 10.00 a.m. Foxford 29th March – Holy Thursday - Holy Communion 8.00 p.m. Foxford 30th March – Good Friday – Solemn Liturgy 12 noon - Foxford 1st April – Easter Day 10.00 a.m. Foxford 12 noon McWilliam Park Hotel, Claremorris.

Errislannan update As anyone connected with listed buildings and sacred sites will tell you it takes time to get all the various permissions and inspections completed before work can commence. Also I think we have had every storm that could be thrown at us in Connemara – not an ideal time for roof restoration. However, thankfully we now have a start date when contractors will begin and we will be on course for the church to be ready for the July and August services.

FUNDRAISING CONCERT: A special Concert with Max T. Barnes, renowned Country singer and friends will take place in the Mayfly Hotel, Foxford on Thursday 5th April in aid of the Church Restoration Fund.

OMEY GROUP Christ Church, Clifden St Thomas’, Ballinakill St Mary’s, Roundstone Priest–in–charge: The Very Revd Stan Evans Telephone 095 21147 Mobile: 087 636 9473

Death of Dr Michael Darling It was with great sadness that we received the news of the death of Dr Michael in South Africa. Michael was the former Master of the Rotunda in Dublin and so many owed so much to him. We send our sincere condolences to Fiona, and his children Christopher, Jonathan, Katie and Mitch. Michael’s funeral was in his home parish of Sandford and Milltown in Dublin and committal was in St Mary’s churchyard, Roundstone. A very dear, faithful and much loved friend – may he rest in peace.


Parish News Digest

From maintenance to mission...... As you read the above notes I am sure there are many who would question such expenditure on our churches. For a small community to devote such time to preserving the buildings when we are told that our Church congregations are under pressure. The joy of Omey is that our churches are seen as havens and places of peace and tranquillity where locals and visitors alike come together to give thanks and support for each other in times of joy and also when the going gets tough. Thankfully this sacred site will shortly be enhanced with attractive external seats offering the visitor a place to rest and absorb the beauty of this cherished spot.

Hehirs of Clifden Country Classic... Contemporary Chic... • Tel: 095 21282- Open 7days Scaffolding and more ........ Work continues on the restoration of the chancel in Christ Church and again this has been a long and arduous task. Then of course the treasured church of St Thomas’s has had its external render removed to let the building breathe before the work on the roof could begin. Again, permissions and inspections and waiting – but all will be worth it! St Mary’s Moyrus .......... Work continues here with the premises now complying with the latest electrical specifications and standards. Great teamwork by the three musketeers – Tinne, Teck and Freeman.


A welcome gift...... We give thanks to Diana Whitehead of Killaloe Cathedral who has kindly donated a beautiful organ to the parish.This will be used in Christ Church when our organ is able to be renovated, and then eventually the gifted organ will be moved to St Thomas’s Moyard to enhance worship there. Diana – thank you!! An Irish blessing...... Some years before coming to TKA I visited St Nicolas’s in Galway shortly after the Epiphany as I needed a short break on a busy Saturday morning. In one corner of the church were a small group of ladies packing away the Christmas decorations. One of the group soon engaged with me in conversation, welcomed me, and when she knew that I had travelled up from Limerick City Parish – shared in the experiences of the past Christmas and the hopes for the New Year. I now know that woman to be Catriona – wife of Archdeacon Gary and ‘curate’ of St Nics. From that moment we have been friends and following my move to Omey she has been the ‘Gaelic’ influence for me as Editor of Tidings. Catriona and Gary as we now know are heading for new pastures as Gary takes up his appointment as

Parish News Digest

Rector of Killiney. We bid them farewell with sincere thanks for all that they have done in Galway and TKA. May they enjoy health and happiness in their new parish. We pray also for the Galway team responsible for securing Gary’s successor as they begin their selection process. Dawn Service – 7.00am Easter Day – Clifden Lifeboat Slipway Greet this new dawn with joy and thanksgiving – and then as we were instructed – let us have breakfast! Thanks once again to Simon and his team at the Boat Club. Holy Week and Easter Services Palm Sunday 10.00am 11.30am Maundy Thursday 7.30pm

Roundstone HC with Liturgy of the Palms Clifden, Christ Church HC with Liturgy of the Palms Moyard, St Thomas’s The Last Supper

Good Friday 2.00pm – 3.00pm

Christ Church, Clifden At the foot of the Cross

Easter Day 10.00am

Roundstone, St Mary’ Easter Eucharist Christ Church, Clifden Easter Eucharist


Come on and Celebrate – for He is Risen, He is Risen Indeed, Alleluia

SKREEN GROUP Skreen Christ Church, Dromard St Mary’s, Kilmacshalgan, Dromore West Acting Priest in Charge: Canon Noel Regan Phone: 071 9166253 Mobile: 086 8875714 Email:

Services for Holy Week and Easter. Skreen Group. Sunday 25th March Palm Sunday Dromard 10 a.m. H.C. Skreen 11.15 M.P. Dromore West 12.30 M.P. Wednesday of Holy Week. Dromore West. 8.00 p m. L.E.O. Maundy Thursday Dromard.

8.00 p m. Holy Communion

Good Friday Skreen

8.00 p m. Reading of the Passion.

Sunday 1st April Easter Day. Dunmoran Strand 7.30 a m H.C. Celebrant: The Bishop. Everyone Welcome. Breakfast in Skreen Schoolhouse. Dromard Skreen Dromore West

10 a m H.C. 11.15 H.C. 12.30 H.C.

Confirmation: On Sunday 22nd April the Bishop will preside at a service of confirmation and Holy Communion in Dromore West at 11.30 a.m.This is a united service for


Parish News Digest

the Group as we come together to support the candidates for this important milestone in their lives. In preparation they join weekly with other candidates in Kilmoremoy Rectory under the leadership of the Archdeacon. This is an opportunity for all involved to get to know each other better and meet new friends. Please support the candidates and their families by joining them for this service on 22nd April. Christmas: Christmas is well and truly over, however as always it was a busy time for everyone. Attendances were good and we commenced with an Advent Carol Service in Skreen on the 2nd Sunday in Advent. This proved very popular and gave us an opportunity to learn some of the great Advent hymns.We were delighted to welcome visitors not only from our own parishes but also from the wider community. Our choir practices were most enjoyable and our best thanks to those who provided tea etc on these occasions. The organist on this occasion was Mrs. Barbara Roulston who challenged us and to whom we are most indebted. Christmas Carol services were held in all three churches. However the highlight for many people and especially those of our neighbours from the Roman Catholic community was the unique setting of Christ Church Dromard on the Sunday before Christmas. Unique because of its setting and the layout of the building with its box pews and lovely old brass standard oil lamps still in use. A special thanks to all our readers and to Fr. O’Hora who read the Gospel. The congregation retired to the hall at Beltra which in itself is also unique and worth a visit where we were treated to generous amount of mulled wine and mince pies. Bi Centenary: Skreen Parish Church celebrates its bi centenary this year and a special service is planned for the second Sunday in August.The annual parish lunch is planned for 5th August and the bi centenary service on Sunday 12th August at 4 p m. Preparations have already commenced with the choir meeting regularly to prepare for this service.

Mothers Union: The members of the Mothers Union extend sincere thanks to Mr. Stephen Brickenten, Diocesan Youth Officer who gave a very informative presentation of the Diocesan trip to Kenya .All agreed it was so worthwhile to see the work being done by the Church and the various agencies as they try to improve the quality of lives of people who exist in the most primitive conditions. The realisation that there is such hardship for people in providing the bare essentials and how access to clean drinking water can improve the quality of life immeasurably. Illness: At Christmas we learned of Jonathan Higgins’s unfortunate accident in Dubai.This caused great anxiety and concern within the whole community. We are delighted to hear that Jonathan is making good progress considering all that he had to deal with. We think of David, Daphne and the family as they travelled and stayed in Dubai in order to provide support for their son and brother. We extend good wishes to all the family and pray that all who are ill at this time will be restored to good health.

TUAM GROUP St Mary’s Cathedral, Tuam St Mary’s, Cong St John the Baptist, Aasleagh Rector:The Very Revd Alistair Grimason Tel: 094 9546909 Mob.: +353 85 2821073 Email:

CHRISTMASTIDE Many thanks to all who helped with and participated in our Christmas Carol Services, both in Cong and Tuam. Mary's Cong and St. Mary's Tuam were decorated beautifully which made it all the easier to 'make this place glad with our carols of praise.' A particular mention must be made of the children in Cong who read splendidly. And once more we must say a big 'Thank You' to Loraine Ormsby for helping to organnise this.

The robed choir from the Priory Church in Killadeas will be in attendance. 200 years have seen many changes and we wish to honour those who over the years have kept and maintained Christian worship on this ancient and historic site. The present church is dated 1818, however this site is pre reformation and goes back to Thank you also to those who provided the early medieval times. refreshments after each service. And a big thank you especially to Lydons Lodge who hosted us in Cong. 38

Parish News Digest

CHRISTMAS DAY We had our customary large congregations on the Day of the Festival. It is truly always a joy and a pleasure to welcome home so many 'children of the parish', our very own Wild Geese, who return to their roots and worship with us on the Great Day. It an equal joy to be able to welcome the many visiors who stay in the region over Christmas and come to one of the two St. Marys to worship the Christ Child. This year on Christmas day the Dean found himself (like so many others in the parish) stricken by the flu bug, so he was very far from 'top form'. He would like to thank heartily both Jim Stafford (Cong) and Judith Hesford ( Tuam) for stepping up the mark at litterally the last minute and assisting with communion. BAPTISMS Sunday 10th December was a fierce day with snow and ice on the roads. The Dean will remember his slippery drive to Tuam for quite a while. But better still will he remember that day for the occasion of the baptism of Oisin, son of Fiona and Sadie, in St. Mary's Cathedral. Family and friends had traveled quite a distance on that freezing day to help Oisin begin his Journey of Faith and they warmed the Cathedral in the best way possible. May God bless this little one and his parents in the years to come.

On New Years Eve, Sunday 31st December, we welcomed Matthew O'Loughlin into the household faith. Matthew was baptised in Saint Mary's Cong by the Dean in the presence of family and friends, and parishioners. David Rooke read a lesson in his wonderful Welsh accent. We wish Matthew, his parents Mary and David and his two brothers, every blessing as he begins his Christian journey. BIRTHS There were two excellent ' over and above' reasons for celebrations in the past couple of months with the birth of two children who, through family connections, now have associations with our little parish. Emma Jean Sandor, first grandchild of Ros and Canon David Williams, Cong parishioners, was born on 28th November in the USA. Evelyn Isabella Hall, niece of Jo Wright, a Tuam parishioner, was born in England on 23rd January. God bless them all mighily!


Parish News Digest

TABLE QUIZ A Table Quiz in aid of St. Mary's Cong (and a bit of social craic!) was held in Lydon's Lodge on 8th December. There was goodly number of contestants and some of those who were already in Lydons were gently press-ganged into participating. The Dean was the question setter and the quiz master on the night. Several ladies helped to organise and run the event, including the raffle, and it would be invidious to pick out one for single thanks so 'Thank you All'. A particular mention must be made of Lydons Lodge though who welcome us every year for this annual invasion. LEENANE It was with sadness that we heard of the death of Jim Tynan of Leenane. Jim was a frequent member of the congregation of St. John the Baptists at Aasleagh. This occured while the Dean was in Kenya and we thank Canon Val Rogers for representing him at Jim's funeral in St. Michael's Church, Leenane. We also send our prayerful sympathies to Jim's wife Ann, his sons and daughter, his mother Mary and all the family. We would also like to extend our thanks to all those who organised and contributed to the Annual Fundraisee for Aasleagh held in Gaynor's of Leenane on 8th December. ST BRIGIDSTIDE LUNCH Every year, in and around Saint Brigid's Day, members of the Cathedral Family get together for a celebratory lunch. This happens for no particular reason, no fund rasing or deep study. It is simply an occassion to break bread together, enjoy one anothers company, have a laugh and swap stories. This year it was held in Gathers restaurant just round the corner from St. Marys on Sunday 4th February after the celebration of the Holy Eucharist. And it was excellent. The food was excellent. The craic was excellent. The whole afternoon was excellent. Many thanks to Judith Hesford who organsied this bash! SERVICE OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY The Cathedral of the Assumption in Tuam was once again the venue for for this annual service.


Bishop Rooke and the Dean joined Archbishop Neary and the Cathedral Clergy, Fr. Pat Farragher and Fr. Sean Flynn for the celebration of our desire for closer unity across christendom. On behalf of St Mary's Cathedral, Mattie Masterson read a lesson and the Dean led the intercessions while Bishop Patrick offered considered words on the theme. The guest preacher was Fr. Francis Mitchell. CONCERT A concert in aid of St. Mary's Cong will be held in the church on Saturday 24th March at 8.00pm. 'Sing-On Ladies Choir' will be the principal performers with a string quartet and some solo pieces. Tickets will be available on the door. SAINT PATRICKS DAY: PLEASE NOTE. The Festival of our Patronal Saint falls this year on a Saturday. In consultation with parishioners it has been decided to celebrate the Saint's Day on Sunday 18th March with an All Age Service in Cong at 10am and a Festival Eucharist in Tuam at 12 noon. HOLY WEEK AND EASTER Holy Week will begin with a visit from Bishop Patrick on Palm Sunday, 25th March when he will preach and celebrate the Eucharist in both Cong and Tuam. Thereafter the programme will be as follows: Wednesday of Holy Week, 8pm St. Marys Cathedral, Compline Holy Thursday, 8pm, St Marys Cong, Holy Communion Good Friday, Passion Narative and The Litany: Cong 10am; Tuam 12 noon. Easter Day, Holy Communion Cong 10am, Tuam 12 noon. CONGRATULATIONS AND BEST WISHES It is with a heavy heart that we here note that The Archdeacon of Tuam, Ven. Gary Hastings, is on the move. Gary has been appointed to the Parish of Killiney in Dublin Diocese. He will be sorely missed in TKA. Our heaviness of heart notwithstanding, we send our genuine best wishes and blessings to him and Caitriona as they look forward to beginning their new sphere of ministry, albeit on the wrong side of the Shannon!.

Tidings Easter 2018 issue  
Tidings Easter 2018 issue  

Easter 2018 edition