Pastor's Desk: Fourth Sunday of Advent
Welcome everyone, as we mark the Fourth Sunday of Advent. This Fourth Sunday, our celebrations are overshadowed by the release of Chapter 19 of the Murphy Report which details how the diocese responded to the crimes of Tony Walsh when he was a priest of this diocese. Archbishop Martin has issued a forthright statement in relation to this and you can read his statement here.
For myself there are many things going through my head in relation to what the report says. As parishioners know, I am from Ballyfermot and all the people named in the Report are familiar to me. I was 13 years old when Tony Walsh was appointed to Ballyfermot and I was in first year in the local Vocational School. Thank God I never had any dealings with Walsh. The priests I knew were good priests who were a very positive influence on me. While I am from the Assumption parish, I was never involved in that parish but in St. Matthew’s Parish in Upper Ballyfermot. There I joined the Young Christian Workers movement and became very involved in parish life as a teenage volunteer. When I went into seminary, I still kept my contact with St. Matthew’s Parish as all my friends were there. With hindsight, I am very thankful that my involvement in Church did not bring me into contact with Tony Walsh or any other abusing priest. The Report makes for shocking reading as it lays out how complaints about Walsh were dealt with. Nothing can ever make up for what was done to my fellow parishioners in Ballyfermot but we must help them achieve justice and healing. We also need to be vigilant so that such abuse cannot occur again. If parishioners have any concerns regarding Child Protection in this parish they should contact our Child Protection Representatives on 087 318 3066, the Gardaí in Coolock 01 666 4200 or the local HSE Social Worker 01 816 4200. The number for the Dublin Diocese Child Safeguarding and Protection Service is 01 836 0314.
Church Notices: 19th December 2010
- During the past week, the Christmas Newsletter, the Parish Christmas card (with Timetable of all ceremonies) and the Dues Envelope have been delivered to homes in the community. We would like to say Thank You to all who assisted with deliveries. If you did not receive one, there are spare packs at the doors of the church.
- The Parish Advent Penance Service with individual confessions will take place on Tuesday at 7.30pm. There will be visiting confessors in attendance. Confessions will also be heard on Friday morning, Christmas Eve, from 10.30am-11.30am. The church will close after confessions to prepare for the Christmas Ceremonies.
- The Volunteers who signed up for the new choral choir are asked to come to an introductory rehearsal on Wednesday, 22nd December at 7.30pm here in the church.
- CHRISTMAS MASSES: The Vigil Mass of Christmas will be celebrated at 7.30 p.m. on Friday evening, Christmas Eve. The Solemn Night Mass with the blessing of the Crib will take place at 10.00pm. Masses on Christmas Morning will be at 9.30am (Family Mass), 11.00am and 12.30pm. The church will close after the 12.30 Mass, as there is no Evening Mass on Christmas Day. Please arrive early to the Masses as there can be difficulties finding seats especially the 7.30pm Vigil Mass.
- Masses for next Sunday 26th December, the Feast of the Holy Family, are at 9.30am, 11.00am and 12.30pm. There will be no Vigil Mass the evening before.
- A reminder that Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament will not take place (tomorrow) Monday. Adoration will resume in the New Year.
- New rosters for the Ministers of the Eucharist and Ministers of the Word are available for collection from the Sacristy porch notice board.