Sunday, December 2, 2012

A United Pro Life Vigil is to take place in Dublin next Tuesday (December 4) at 4:30pm at the Dáil.  The vigil will bring together people from a range of groups, and individuals who support a pro-life ethos.
“We are asking as many people as possible who consider themselves pro-life to come forward for this event,” Claire Moore from the Pro Life Campaign (PLC), one of the organisers of the event, told ciNews.
“We will stand together in respect for life in a peaceful atmosphere,” she added.
Ms Moore admitted that it might be difficult for people to make it to Dublin on a Tuesday for the 4:30pm vigil but appealed to the public to do just that.
“We are asking people to make a special effort at such a crucial time,” she said.
So far they have been encouraged by the response the initiative has gained.  “People are making great efforts to be free to come,” she said.
The organisers are expecting groups from around Ireland, and are coordinating buses travelling to the capital.  Those organising buses from outside the Dublin, should notify Clare at  (087) 266 8702 or Katie (087) 702 0255 and they will pass on the information about the buses to others in the area wishing to attend.  The vigil is due to last one hour, from 4:30pm to 5:30pm on Tuesday. 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Day for Life (2012): Choose Life

Parishes and individuals are invited to pray a special ‘Prayer for the Child in the Womb’ during Masses throughout the month of prayer which will end on the Feast of All the Saints of Ireland on 6th November next.  The prayer asks us to open our hearts to welcome every child as a unique and wonderful gift, and to help those who make our laws to uphold the uniqueness and sacredness of every human life from the moment of conception to natural death.

The Irish Episcopal Conference has asked that annual Day for Life in Ireland this year, on Sunday 7th October, will mark the beginning of a special month of prayer dedicated to theme ‘Choose Life!’

Please click here for more information

Friday, August 17, 2012

Year of Faith

With the Apostolic Letter of 11 October 2011, Porta fidei, Pope Benedict XVI declared a Year of Faith. This year will begin on 11 October 2012, on the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Ecumenical Vatican Council, and will conclude on 24 November 2013, the Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, Universal King.
This year will be a propitious occasion for the faithful to understand more profoundly that the foundation of Christian faith is “the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.”[1] Founded on the encounter with the Risen Christ, faith can be rediscovered in its wholeness and all its splendor. “In our days too faith is a gift to rediscover, to cultivate and to bear witness to” because the Lord “grants each one of us to live the beauty and joy of being Christians.”[2]
The beginning of the Year of Faith coincides with the anniversaries of two great events which have marked the life of the Church in our days: the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council, called by Blessed PopeJohn XXIII (11 October 1962), and the twentieth of the promulgation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, given to the Church by Blessed Pope John Paul II (11 October 1992).
The Year of Faith is intended to contribute to a renewed conversion to the Lord Jesus and to the rediscovery of faith, so that the members of the Church will be credible and joy-filled witnesses to the Risen Lord in the world of today – capable of leading those many people who are seeking it to the “door of faith.” This “door” opens wide man’s gaze to Jesus Christ, present among us “always, until the end of the age” (Mt 28:20). He shows us how “the art of living” is learned “in an intense relationship with him.”[13] “Through his love, Jesus Christ attracts to himself the people of every generation: in every age he convokes the Church, entrusting her with the proclamation of the Gospel by a mandate that is ever new. Today too, there is a need for stronger ecclesial commitment to new evangelization in order to rediscover the joy of believing and the enthusiasm for communicating the faith.”[14]
Apostolic Letter from Pope Benedict XVI for the Year of Faith
“The “door of faith” (Acts 14:27) is always open for us, ushering us into the life of communion with God and offering entry into his Church. It is possible to cross that threshold when the word of God is proclaimed and the heart allows itself to be shaped by transforming grace. To enter through that door is to set out on a journey that lasts a lifetime. It begins with baptism (cf. Rom 6:4), through which we can address God as Father, and it ends with the passage through death to eternal life, fruit of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, whose will it was, by the gift of the Holy Spirit, to draw those who believe in him into his own glory (cf. Jn 17:22). To profess faith in the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – is to believe in one God who is Love (cf. 1 Jn 4:8): the Father, who in the fullness of time sent his Son for our salvation; Jesus Christ, who in the mystery of his death and resurrection redeemed the world; the Holy Spirit, who leads the Church across the centuries as we await the Lord’s glorious return.” – Pope Benedict XVI, Apostolic Letter from Pope Benedict XVI for the Year of Faith
Click on the following link to read the full text of the Holy Father’s Apostolic Letter which was issued on 11 October 2011.

Monday, May 7, 2012

IEC: Whats happening in our parish

A sub-committee of the Parish Pastoral Council (a handful of brave volunteers, let it be said) has been planning events to mark the Eucharistic Congress here in the parishes of Saggart/Rathcoole/Brittas and Newcastle. Here is the programme so far:

1.   Sunday 27th May :  A Pilgrim Walk, under the banner 'Parishioners Together for IEC 2012'

The walk will start from the green in Newcastle at 2.30, proceed to Rathcoole church and end in Saggart church.
All parishioners in the two parishes, both Roman Catholic and Church of Ireland, are invited. The walk will retrace the growth of Christianity in the area, from the oldest church (the Church of Ireland, Newcastle) on to the newest, Rathcoole, ending with the church in Saggart dating from the 19th century but going back to the medieval church whose remains can still be seen in the graveyard opposite. Two of these churches will be celebrating big moments in their history next year, Newcastle's bicentenary and Rathcoole's 25th. A walk through our local area, then, while renewing our sense of a Christian faith dating back centuries, a walk along the roads and by the fields and a walk going back in time.  The purpose of the walk is to awaken a more lively sense of the faith we have received from our forebears here in the parishes that we belong to, live in, and will, finally one day, rest in.

2.   Sunday 10th to Sunday 17th June

This is the week of the Congress. Plans are still ongoing and any ideas will be very gratefully received.
A talk on the history of the parishes will be given by John Bradley of the History Department, NUI Maynooth.
There will be Mass on certain evenings too.

'Parishioners' Stories'.  Wouldn't it be interesting to hear some parishioners tell their story?  Parishioners both old and young, both long-standing and newly arrived (i.e. 'blow-ins'), both Irish-born and born abroad?  I have in mind a five-minute talk on any aspect of parish life: reminiscences, impressions of parish life today, appreciations of our churches, old photographs etc. etc. It depends on volunteers if this is going to happen. Such stories could maybe be collected afterwards and published in some format as a mark of our common endeavour for IEC 2012. If you would be interested in taking part, please contact me (Donal McMahon) at

A programme/booklet is being prepared entitled  Parishioners Together /
Saggart, Rathcoole, Brittas, Newcastle   /   Celebrate  /   The 50th Eucharistic Congress, Dublin 2012.