Archbishop Francis Duffy
Last Sunday Archbishop Francis Duffy was installed as Archbishop of Tuam. A native of Co. Cavan Archbishop Francis was ordained a priest in 1982 and worked in his native diocese of Kilmore until he became Bishop of Ardagh and Clonmacnois in 2013. During his eight years in Longford he has overseen many initiatives in that diocese and we here in the Archdiocese of Tuam look forward to working with him in the years ahead.
The parishioners of Balla and Belcarra welcome Archbishop Francis and we look forward to his first visit to the parish when Covid restrictions allow. We assure him of our support and our prayers as he takes on the role of Archbishop.
Archbishop Michael Neary
After twenty-seven years of leading our Archdiocese, Archbishop Michael Neary has retired. We thank him for the leadership that he has shown as Archbishop and for the support and encouragement that he gave to so many initiatives throughout the archdiocese. We thank him for his many visits to our parish and in particular for his kindness to our young people when he celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation.
We pray that the Lord will bless him with good health to enjoy his well earned rest.
NEW YEAR GREETINGS
As we begin a New Year we do so with the Covid pandemic still bringing us many challenges.
Please God 2022 will see it decline, so that we can return to many of the activities that we were used to, in our homes, churches, and community.
May the Lord bless us all throughout the year as we seek to live out our Christian calling-loving, supporting and caring for one another.
May the year be good to us and may it bring us health, peace, and happiness.
May 2022 bring you and yours many blessings.
Happy New Year
ST CRONAN’S CENTENARY BOOK
St Cronan’s Centenary Book was launched on Sunday December 1st immediately after 11am Mass by Michael Commins of Mid -West Radio and The Mayo News.
This 96 page colour production contains a variety of articles that detail the history of St. Cronan’s, Balla and its people as well as happenings in the other areas of our parish, namely Belcarra, Clogher and Manulla.
The publication has some marvellous photographs of the beautiful windows and sanctuary. It is very well produced and sells at €10. It is a must for people in the area and for those whose roots are in Balla. The committee responsible for its publication deserve great credit for what they have achieved. We are indebted to them.
All were welcomed to come along on Sunday for the launch and to join in light refreshments afterwards in the nearby Community Room.
MODEL OF ST. CRONAN’S CHURCH
This amazing model is made of matches which was very kindly donated to mark the centenary is now on display in the porch. Sincere thanks to the donor, the Monaghan Brothers who donated the table and John Killeen who assembled it free of charge. It is a beautiful display and legacy of the centenary.
‘This day was made by the Lord let us rejoice and be glad’ is a line taken from the Psalms. It could well sum up the celebration taking place within our parish this Sunday May 27th. We celebrate the centenary of our beautiful St. Cronan’s church. It is indeed a noble structure with its many outstanding features. It is a truly fitting place of worship and today we celebrate and honour the people who in very hard times funded and built the it.
We think of our many emigrants in the United States and elsewhere who donated hard earned money to ensure that St. Cronan’s became a reality. We honour and give thanks for all those who worked hard and long hours to build it. We thin too of all those who have gathered within its hallowed walls to pray over the decades, those who were baptised here, those who were sealed with the oil of chrism on confirmation day, those who committed themselves in love through the sacrament of marriage, those who prostrated themselves before the altar on ordination day and all those who welcomed the Lord’s mercy in the sacrament of reconciliation and His presence in the Eucharist. We also commend to the Lord today all whose funeral liturgies have taken place here. We pray that they now rejoice in the halls of heaven .We think too of all those who have sat in these seats and lifted up their hearts to the Lord in times of petition and likewise in thanksgiving.
Today we give thanks for all who have passed on this beautiful building to us. As a community let us commit to ensuring that this sacred place is maintained as a fitting monument to generations past. Let us pray also that we will be true to our faith and ensure that it is passed on to those that come after us. Faith inspired the people of Balla to build this church 100 years ago. May our faith enable us to appreciate it and ensure that it remains a place where we continue to lift up our hearts in prayer to God.
On this day of celebration I would also like to remember all the priests who have ministered in this parish over the years and the priests and religious who have left here to share the Christian message with other people at home and abroad, and to acknowledge the tremendous work that over 300 people do in various ministries in both Balla and Belcarra. Without their generosity of service our parish could not operate.
On this centenary celebration day I thank all who are helping to make it a happy and positive occasion for everyone and I pray that God will pour down many blessings on us and on our parish as we give thanks for the past, celebrate the present and pray for the future.
‘This day was made by the Lord let us rejoice and be glad.’ Psalm 117:V24/
27th May 2018.
Photos courtesy of Colin Redmond, Kathy Lyons and Michael Durkan.
WORK ON THE CHURCH is continuing. Most of the raking out of the joints is now done. It is very slow work – as particularly it has revealed that a lot of water has been trapped within the gable wall for some time. That water has to be removed before grouting and repointing begins. The coping stones at the top of the gable wall will be lifted off and all the damaged lead replaced. Our Architect is very happy with the work carried out. Again many thanks to all who are contributing extra in the weekly envelope and to the individuals, families and organisations that have made specific donations. It is this generosity that is enabling this essential work to take place.
Please click hereto see a fascinating up close and personal report where you will see images of the work in the December report to the parish.
WORK ON ST CRONAN’S
The raking out of all joints on the east gable has begun after permission was granted by the Mayo County Council Heritage Office. Some of the coping on the gable will be lifted to see if there is any water ingress there. This is very slow work.
When this is done the repointing will start and work on the window externally can commence. At the end of that work a full conservation plan for the entire church will have to be drawn up.
As the work progresses we will keep everyone one fully informed. A sincere thank you to allwho have increased their weekly contributions and to those who have made specific donations.
It is much appreciated I can assure you.
Sincere Thanks to Michael Durkan and John McEllin for their photos to keep us all updated on the fabulous work being done to preserve St Cronan’s for its next 100 years.