Bishop MacDaid: Blessing of New School St. Macartan’s Church, Aghadrumsee

Posted on 05. Feb, 2013

Blessing of New School

&

Mass of Thanksgiving

at

St. Macartan’s Church, Aghadrumsee,

Friday, 1 February 2013, 10.30am.

Introduction

 

My dear friends,

I welcome you all this morning to St. Macartan’s Church in Aghadrumsee.  It is the first of February, the first day of Spring.  What an appropriate day to be celebrating the opening of a new school.  Today is the feast of St. Brigid the patroness of Ireland.  She was famous for her hospitality, and her care of the sick.  She founded a monastery in Kildare and it was there she lived and died.  Your new school is dedicated, like this church, to St. Macartan.  He lived in this part of our country, was a companion of St. Patrick and is the Patron of our diocese.  So we bring a lot of memories and intentions to our altar this morning and to prepare ourselves to celebrate this Mass more worthily let us ask pardon for our sins.  

  

Blessing of New School

&

Mass of Thanksgiving

at

St. Macartan’s Church, Aghadrumsee,

Friday, 1 February 2013, 10.30am.

Homily

My dear children,

I would like to address a few words of reflection to you first of all.  When we are given something special, normally our first need and urge is to acknowledge it.  You are old enough now to appreciate that you have been given something special for your use.  Your new school would not have existed but for the vision of Canon Macartan MacQuaid and the hard work of Eamon Mulligan and Deirdre Boyle.  All the staff and Board of Governors played their part.  The architect and builders changed plans into buildings and Fr. Owen Gorman, Canon Larry Duffy and Fr. Cathal Deery made their contribution too.  Your parents and the local community gave whatever support was needed, including financial support, to see the project through.  So can I ask you privileged pupils of this fine school to show your appreciation of what has been given to you by a round of applause for all those who have worked so hard to provide it for your benefit?

Turning for a moment to the adults present : can we dare take the risk of reminding ourselves that along the border where you live and work some terrible things happened?  For many families there were dark days that left behind crushed spirits, anger, depression, suspicion and loneliness.  There were hearts so dispirited that the people to whom they belonged despaired of reviving them.  But the human spirit has enormous capacity to bounce back and there is no stronger motivator for change than our children.  “The child can be father to the man.” “Let them come to me for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs.”

Thank heavens, the mist is beginning to scatter, and the light is finding its way in through the chinks and the cracks.  In the improved light, eyes are seeing more clearly, and hearts that had turned to stone are softening.  Smiles are reappearing and where once eyes kept looking downwards, they are beginning to lift, and these smiles are now winging their way towards those who walk on the other side of the road.  Thank God, our children are not weighed down by some of the experiences witnessed by our adults.  Mercifully, they are not burdened with that baggage.  It is to the credit of our schools that they have been agents of enlightenment.  They have given our children from different traditions the opportunity to dance and sing together.  They are shaping a new society, a healthier environment.  I think we should express our gratitude to the teachers and our children for leading us towards the light.

+Liam S. MacDaid

Feast of St. Brigid
1 February 2013

                   

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