Pastor's Desk: 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time
Welcome everyone. Today at the 12.30pm Family Mass we celebrate the annual Mass for the new school year and there will be participation by the 6 primary schools that are within our parish boundary. Schools are very much at the heart of any community because of the vital role they play in educating our children not only in the subjects of the curriculum but also in the interpersonal skills the children will need in their adult lives. Schools are therefore a microcosm of the community they serve. We are very blessed with the quality of educators who work in our schools and they should never be taken for granted.
I was at the New School Year Mass that Archbishop Martin celebrated in Clonliffe College a little over a week ago and at that Mass he spoke of the interesting year that lies ahead. As you will be aware, Minister Ruairi Quinn has initiated a survey of 47 communities across the country, 11 of which are in the Dublin diocese, with a view to seeing what schools should change from Catholic Patronage to other forms of patronage. Five areas of the 47 will be selected as a pilot programme next month to see how it should work. In this Deanery, the areas of Portmarnock/Malahide have been selected in the 47 but we are still to find out who the first five will be.
Needless to say there are a variety of views on this proposal and all of us interested in education will be watching how things unfold very carefully. Suffice to say that in this parish we value the work of all our schools and the fact that there is a choice in Patronage. Our prayer today is that the Lord will bless the pupils, teachers, Principals, staff, parents’ associations and Boards of Management who form our school communities, today and throughout the new school year.