The images of death, suffering and consequent fear from Barcelona have shocked people during the past week. The physical suffering and bereavement for individuals and families are impossible to comprehend or imagine. It surely is beyond words and description. Our faith in God is shaken and virtually unable to cope with, or scarcely comprehend, such events. However, at the centre of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the triumph of hope over despair and love over fear. We have to dig very hard to reach this truth in the light of our own personal suffering and the irrationality of terrorist attacks. We dig deep and we call out to God to help us in our own lives, to comfort the bereaved in Barcelona and ultimately to reach the hardened hearts of those intent on destruction of people’s lives. God, our Father, we call on you at our Mass this weekend, in our parish, in our families to reach out to the bereaved and truly show us your triumph over fear and death. May those who have died so tragically rest in the peace of the Lord.
All in Our Lady Crowned parish warmly congratulate Fr. Dermot Brennan OP. as he celebrates fifty years of service as a priest in the Dominican order this weekend. In those years, he has worked in Trinidad and Tobago, in hospital ministry, in clinical pastoral education, has served as prior in Cork, Limerick and Drogheda houses of the Dominican. Above all, Fr, Dermot has been an ever present in the lives of Mayfield people through family events, happy days and sad days. This weekend, we salute his work and his unbreakable bond to the people of Mayfield, the Dominican order and all the ministries which he has fulfilled with dedication, zeal and a great love of God. We all wish, Fr. Dermot ‘ad multos annos’ i.e. many more years in the service of the Lord.
There was a fantastic response to the display of old photographs of previous school events in St. John the Apostle school during the week. There was a real sense of nostalgia and genuine appreciation from former pupils, parents and families in the community. Indeed, some past pupils made huge efforts to be present coming from throughout Cork and different parts of the country. There was also an evident appreciation that the building will be retained by the parish and for educational use. Plans are accelerating for the refurbishment of the building to accommodate St. Killian’s Special School in September. There was also a great attendance of current parents and prospective parents in the hall of Scoil Mhuire Banríon on last Thursday morning to make final and detailed preparations for the newly amalgamated school, Scoil Mhuire agus Eoin in September. The number of Junior Infants enrolled for next September has already exceeded 40 and continues to grow. This illustrates the level of support for the amalgamation process and the provision of a co-educational school. The next phase of the amalgamation process will be to honour the rich traditions of both Scoil Mhuire Banríon and Scoil Eoin Aspal contributing to an even stronger sense of identity for the new school. There will be a special Mass in Scoil Eoin Aspal on Tue. Jun. 20th. The school community of Scoil Mhuire Banríon will participate in the vigil Mass in Our Lady Crowned on Sat. Jun. 24th. The last and final step will be the building and refurbishment works scheduled for both school buildings from early July onwards. The Department of Education and Skills is investing substantial funds in both school buildings ensuring the best of accommodation for both Scoil Mhuire agus Eoin and St.Killian’s Special School. May God bless the work of all those planning for the future of our schools, our parish and our community. These are exciting days for our schools and our parish.
This past week, and this weekend, we mark the closure of two chapters of the history and life of Mayfield in honouring Scoil Mhuire Banríon and Scoil Eoin Aspal. As we do so, we mark the opening of a wonderful new chapter in the future of our community and our parish with the opening of Scoil Mhuire agus Eoin. There is evident nostalgia and sadness around the closure of these enormous chapters of education and life in our parish. I have compared our two schools as the two lungs of our parish. Scoil Mhuire agus Eoin will be a new chapter and will become the heart of our parish. It will be a special place for children and families. The two lungs will become one beating heart. These special Masses which we celebrate are emotional moments evoking wonderful memories especially in memory of pupils, parents and staff members who have gone to their eternal reward. However, progress is to be embraced and the future is bright. May God bless all those who passed through the doors of Scoil Eoin Aspal since 1973 and Scoil Mhuire Banríon since 1962. May God bless the children, the families and staff members of Scoil Mhuire agus Eoin who will walk through the door for the first time on next Tue. Jun. 27th and then for the new school year in September. Another wonderful chapter will also open when the children from St. Killian’s School will cross the threshold of the current building of Scoil Eoin Aspal in the Autumn. May God bless them, their families, their teachers and their school.
Welcome to Fr. Rafal Zielonka who has been appointed as curate to our parish by Bishop Buckley. While Fr. Rafal has been appointed to Our Lady Crowned, he will also assist in St. Patrick’s/Holy Family and St. Joseph’s. Fr. Rafal is from the diocese of Tarnow in southern Poland. He is currently resident in St. Augustine’s in Washington Street which is the home of the Polish community here in Cork. He has been assisting Fr. Piotr Galus there for several months and will move to our parish in the next few weeks. Fr. Rafal will reside in the presbytery in St. Joseph’s. I know that Our Lady Crowned and the wider Mayfield community will take Fr. Rafal to their hearts and make him warmly welcome. The appointment of Fr. Rafal is yet another positive step for the Mayfield area in 2017. We also look forward to the ordination of David Lane to the permanent deaconate on 10th Sept next and the golden jubilee celebrations for Fr. Dermot Brennan OP on Sat. Jul. 8th @ 7pm. 2017 will be a great year for our parish and community and we are delighted that Fr. Rafal will now be part of our parish and our story.