Our Lady of Lourdes Jan 18

PARISH NEWS: The next meeting of the Parish Pastoral Council will be held on Tuesday, January 21 at 7.30pm. Parish envelopes for 2014 have been distributed. If you have not received your box of envelopes, please contact the Sacristy. We acknowledge all who give to the parish in whatever way that suits. We wish to acknowledge and thank all who have returned their Christmas Offering Envelopes for the Priests and the Sacristan and all who are in the process of doing so.

PARISH NEWS: The next meeting of the Parish Pastoral Council will be held on Tuesday, January 21 at 7.30pm. Parish envelopes for 2014 have been distributed. If you have not received your box of envelopes, please contact the Sacristy. We acknowledge all who give to the parish in whatever way that suits. We wish to acknowledge and thank all who have returned their Christmas Offering Envelopes for the Priests and the Sacristan and all who are in the process of doing so.

The recent raffle to raise funds for the Parish Centre was won by Marie Barry, Clareview. First Prize was a beautiful knitted Christmas Crib donated by Evan Callaghan. A big Thank You to all who donated prizes and to those who kindly bought raffle tickets. We raised €423. A very special Thank You also to Santa and all who helped on the day. Bishop Brendan Leahy celebrated Mass in our Parish on New Year’s Day. Afterwards, he joined members of the congregation for an enjoyable cup of tea and a chat in the Parish Centre.

Our Lady of the Rosary Parish Liturgy Group was formed in 1996. The group meets monthly and consists of the Priests of the Parish and representatives of all the active ministry groups in the Parish. The Role of the Liturgy Group is to: Plan the liturgical year ahead, short term/medium term/long term; Be aware of the different moods/ times/senses of the liturgical year; Connect with other active ministry groups to ensure good communication. Evaluate our liturgical celebrations and make whatever decisions are needed for our upcoming celebrations. It is important for the liturgy group to nourish itself, as prayer is a central part of each meeting. For more information please contact Maud Ryan.

The Salesian Infant school is now enrolling for 2014-2015. Enrolment for children in the parish is now closing, as there is a waiting list for children from outside the parish. If you are living in the parish and have a child/children who will be 4 years of age on or before 1 September 2014, please enrol them now. Closing date for same is Friday, February 7. Please bring your child’s Birth Certificate with you.

At the heart of Pope Francis’ Homily, on the Feast of the Epiphany, was the message that we must never be blinded by the forces of darkness, but instead be transformed by the light of Christ. The Pope was referring to the journey the Magi made, whose path was illuminated by a star which brought them in search of the great light of the Lord Jesus.

LIMERICK WALKING CLUB: Limerick Walking Club will meet in Na Piarsiagh GAA Club, Caherdavin every Satuday at 11.30am and all walks commence at 12 noon. You can also go to Cratloe Woods at 11.30am and walk for 5 miles with the group. The club also meet at 11.30am each Sunday at the carpark in the University of Limerick. If you can’t make any of these dates, please come along to Fenesseys Bar in New Street on Wednesday evenings at 7.30, where you will meet a group who enjoy a good walk and a cup of tea afterwards. All new members are welcome. We’re looking forward to seeing you all there.

MARANATHA MONTHLY RETREAT: The Maranatha Monthly Retreat will be held on Sunday, January, 2014 in St Paul’s Church, Dooradoyle, Limerick. It will commence at 2.30pm. The retreat will be conducted by Fr Michael O Shea- PP Fedamore. The Guest speaker for the retreat will be John Delaney from Portlaoise. All are welcome to attend.

HISTORY LECTURE: Thomond Archaeological and Historical Society Spring Lecture Series 2014 - The Founding of the Irish Volunteers in Limerick 1914 takes place on Monday, January 20 from 8pm in Room T.1.17 in the Tara Building at Mary Immaculate College, South Circular Road, Limerick.

ARD SCOIL RÍS 50TH YEAR CELEBRATIONS: The Parents Council of Ard Scoil Rís extends a warm welcome to past Parents Council members, to join them for a Social Occasion and Tour of the new school building on Sunday, January, 26. We look forward to meeting you to discuss stories of times past and view some memorabilia and photos on display. Venue: Ardscoil Rís, North Circular Road. Time: 3.00pm to 4.30pm. For further information, please telephone 087 2848 155, 086 8184 616 or 087 284 1238.

WORLD MIGRANT SUNDAY: Sunday, January 19 marks World Migrant Sunday, a day when the Church invites us to reflect on the millions of people who leave their homeland, some by choice, some by force, and some out of sheer desperation, to seek out safety, opportunity, and the dream of a new beginning. Our history as a country is steeped in stories of migration. And sadly, recent years have seen the return of the heartbreak of forced migration, with thousands of Irish people travelling abroad each month to seek out new opportunities. Equally, the last twenty years or so have seen our community become home to many migrants from all over the world, who have come to make their life among us, and who have brought a rich new diversity to our parish – a diversity that is to be embraced and celebrated. Sadly, our newspapers all too frequently carry stories where the dream of a new beginning has ended in tragedy. Last October over 130 African migrants – men, women and children – drowned off the coast of Italy and that tragedy is relived in different forms each day all over the world.

It is worth remembering that the story of Christmas ends with Joseph, Mary and the child Jesus fleeing their homeland, fleeing for their very lives, seeking refuge in Egypt. It’s a sobering thought to think that the God whose birth we have celebrated with such joy at Christmas, began His life as a refugee. In his message for World Migrant Sunday, Pope Francis, who has made defence of the poor a cornerstone of his papacy, writes: “Not infrequently, the arrival of migrants, displaced persons, asylum-seekers and refugees gives rise to suspicion and hostility. There is a fear that society will become less secure, that identity and culture will be lost and that competition for jobs will become stiffer and even that criminal activity will increase. A change of attitude towards migrants and refugees is needed on the part of everyone, moving away from defensiveness and fear, indifference and marginalisation, towards attitudes based on a culture of encounter, the only culture capable of building a better, more just and fraternal world.” He calls on all of us to work to eliminate prejudices and presuppositions in our attitude towards migration, and prays that all migrants will encounter an outstretched hand and the warmth of friendship and welcome in their journey. All of us have a part to play, if that prayer is to be realised.

DOCHAS ANNUAL CHURCH GATE COLLECTION: The annual Church Gate Collection for Dóchas (Hope for people with Autism), takes place this weekend January 18 and 19 at all churches. We would very much appreciate your support.