Monthly Archives: February 2017
Next Wednesday (! March) is Ash Wednesday, the first day of the season of Lent.
It is a day of fast and abstinence. Mass including the blessing and distribution of ashes will be celebrated in St Mary’ Church, Cranny on Wednesday at 9.30am and in St Michael’s Church, Kildysart at 8pm.
Christ spent 40 days fasting in the desert, where he was tempted by Satan. Lent originated as a mirroring of this, fasting 40 days as preparation for Easter. Every Sunday is a commemoration of the Sunday of Christ’s resurrection and so as a feast day on which fasting was inappropriate.
Ash Wednesday derives its name from the practice of blessing ashes made from the palm branches blessed on the previous year’s Palm Sunday, and placing them on the foreheads of Christians to the accompaniment of the words “Repent, and believe in the Gospel” or “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return”.
Bishop Fintan Monahan will lead his first Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes on 26 June. The 61st Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes will leave Shannon on Monday 26June, returning on Saturday 1July. The cost this year is €692 per person sharing and there will be a €10 discount for online booking at http://www.joewalshtours.ie
Booking forms can be obtained from: Joe Walsh Tours, 143 Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2. Telephone: (01) 2410810
A limited number of sick pilgrims will be accommodated in the Sanctuary of Lourdes at a cost of €595. Applications for sick pilgrims only to Fr. Tom Ryan, Pilgrimage Director, SS John & Paul Presbytery, Shannon, Co. Clare. Telephone: (061) 364133
Families or individuals often sponsor a family member, parents, or a friend on the occasion of an anniversary or Jubilee with a visit to Lourdes. Sponsorship for sick people is always welcome.
The Feast of our Lady of Lourdes (Saturday, 11 February) was chosen as the annual day of prayer for and with the sick by Pope John Paul II in 1992.
We will celebrate the feast day with Mass and the anointing of the sick in St Mary’s Church, Cranny on Saturday, 11 February at 7.00pm.
All members of our parish are welcome to attend the Mass and anybody suffering from an illness or old age is welcome to receive the sacrament of the sick.
Pope Francis’ message centred on the theme of ‘The Almighty has done great things for me ….’ (Luke 1:49) may be found here
The blessing of throats will take place on Friday, 3 February at 6.30pm in St Benedict’s Church, Coolmeen; at 7.00pm in St Mary’s Church, Cranny and after 8pm Mass in St Michael’s Church, Kildysart.
Using two crossed, blessed, unlit candles the minister touches the throat of each person using the following prayer of blessing:
Through the intercession of St Blaise, Bishop and Martyr,
may the Lord preserve you from aliments of the throat and every other illness.
In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen
Very few facts are known about Saint Blaise. It is believed that he was a bishop of Sebastea in Armenia who was martyred in the early fourth century.
The legend of his life that sprang up in the eighth century tells us that he was born in to a noble family who raised him as a Christian. After becoming a bishop, a new persecution of Christians began. He received a message from God to go into the hills to escape persecution. Men hunting in the mountains discovered a cave surrounded by wild animals who were sick. Among them Blaise walked unafraid, curing them of their illnesses. Recognizing Blaise as a bishop, they captured him to take him back for trial. On the way back, he talked a wolf into releasing a pig that belonged to a poor woman. When Blaise was sentenced to be starved to death, the woman, in gratitude, sneaked into the prison with food and candles. Finally Blaise was killed by the governor.