The Rector writes ‘ We are almost there. A whole year has gone by since we began our Bicentennial celebrations for St Mary’s Church. It has been such a busy year hasn’t it! Thank you to everyone in the entire parish who worked so hard to make it so special. It will be another 8 years before St John’s Church celebrates it’s Bicentennial in 2032 so hopefully we will have recovered our energy by then!
In our penultimate activity, today we will be burying a Time Capsule in St Mary’s Churchyard, along with planting an Oak Tree.
On Wednesday, we will have the final Service for our celebration year. Our Bishop, the Rt Revd Dr Paul Colton, will be joined by the Most Revd John McDowell, Archbishop of Armagh, who will be our preacher at the 7:30pm Choral Evensong. The 7th February 2024 marks exactly 200 years to the day since St Mary’s Church was consecrated for worship and we are delighted to welcome the wonderful Choir of St Fin Barre’s Cathedral to sing. We will also have children from St Mary’s National School, our Parish School, to sing a specially written piece by Mr Peter Stobart, St Fin Barre’s Director of Music.
As well as dedicating the refurbished Reredos gifted to us from the now derelict St Paul’s Church, Ballymoney, the new Credence table and the lovely Bicentennial Quilt of squares created by parishioners and friends, the Bishop will also plant an Oak tree in the Churchyard to commemorate 25 years since he was consecrated bishop. The Bishop intends planting a total of 25 indigenous trees throughout the diocese in the coming year to mark this occasion. It is looking like being a very special evening indeed. ‘
Random Notes CDXLVII
Mary Cowhig has such a wonderful, colourful imagination and she wrote this version of “In the Bleak Midwinter” after the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carol’s in St John’s Church, Monkstown in December 2023. The arrangement that Monkstown Chamber Choir sing during the service, is by Harold Darke. He was organist at King’s College, Cambridge during the Second World War, when all the glass windows had been removed for their own protection.
As we say in Cork, it must have been “Baltic” during those years, and Mary’s words reflect a similar condition in St John’s on that cold, December afternoon!!
In the bleak midwinter
the heating failed, and so
St John’s Church was freezing,
as cold as any snow.
The choir and congregation
sang out in good voices
as their toes and fingers
turned to ice.
When the service ended
they didn’t hang about,
but fled in search of cozy nooks
where they could thaw out.
When they reached the hostelries
in the hour that followed
various types of liquid
Mary Cowhig, December 2023
We need Bellringers for 2024
Would you like to learn how to ring the Church Bells?
Please contact Joy Keefe
Whist evening in aid of St John’s Church Window Repair Fund
8pm Saturday 10th February
Canon McCrea Hall
St Mary’s School
Donations/Spot Prizes much appreciated,
Please talk to the organisers Barney Deane 087-2185197 Henry Forbes 087-203500
Dates for your Diary
4th After 11am Service today Zoe will plant our Bicentennial Oak tree along with a Time Capsule in St Mary’s Churchyard.
7th Closing Service of St Mary’s Bicentennial Year 7:30pm
The Bishop will dedicate the renovated Reredos, the new Credence Table and the Bicentennial Quilt. The Archbishop of Armagh will preach. St Fin Barre’s Choir will sing the Choral Evensong.
10th Charity Whist evening in Canon McCrea Hall 8pm
12th Mens’ Coffee 10am Carrigaline Court Hotel
14th Ash Wednesday
10:30am & 7:30pm Holy Communion and Imposition of Ashes Services in St Mary’s Church
28th Lenten Study begins – Reading the Apocrypha over 4 weeks. 8pm each Wednesday by Zoom beginning Wednesday 28th February