Magnificent send-off for three Mercy Sisters in County Limerick village

Donal O'Regan

Reporter:

Donal O'Regan

Email:

donal.oregan@limerickleader.ie

Magnificent send-off for three Mercy Sisters in County Limerick village

Sisters of Mercy, Cappamore 9-6-2019 Sr Mercy O'Dea, St Assumpta White and Sr Joan Bradshaw outside the Convent of Mercy, Cappamore | Picture by Dave Gaynor

THE SISTERS of Mercy may be leaving Cappamore but their contribution will never be forgotten.

Over 300 attended a Mass of thanksgiving and farewell on Sunday to mark their departure. The nuns have been living and working in the heart of the village since 1896. The remaining three - Sr Mercy O’Dea, Sr Assumpta White and Sr Joan Bradshaw - will move to a convent in Tipperary. Or as parish priest, Fr Dick Browne, put it - going back to the Premier County!

“As we reach this sad turn in the road we trust that God in his wisdom has a purpose to this day,” said Fr Browne.

A group of locals came together to organise the events. Maura Walsh said the symbols brought to the altar reflected the numerous ways the Mercy Sisters have contributed to the parish.

A candle represented the light of education that will continue to shine bright through Scoil Chaitriona. A Celtic Cross reflected Sr Mercy’s tireless work in the day care centre. A treble clef symbolised the legacy of music and song.

An old roll book showed the tens of thousands who were given a free education. A Cappamore ICA guild yearbook because the local ICA was set up by Sr Carmel Moylan. A plant was for all who worked in the school and convent. Concelebrating the Mass were two former convent school pupils, Fr Brendan Duggan and Fr Piaras Jackson.

Sliabh Feilim Singers sang hymns with special significance to the Mercy Order; Scoil Chaitriona pupils did a liturgical dance and Cappamore Youth Choir also sang.

Everybody retired to the community centre for a fantastic spread, special cake and presentations by Cappamore Development Association. Most importantly of all the three Mercy Sisters saw how much they are loved.