Bishop Dermot Farrell
Bishop Dermot Farrell has announced the following clerical appointments for the Diocese of Ossory which are to come into effect on 25 September:
· Very Reverend Frank Purcell, Team Leader Saint John’s Parish, Kilkenny City to become PP Inistioge.
· Very Reverend Dan Carroll, PP, Danesfort to become Team Leader Saint John’s Parish, Kilkenny City.
· Reverend Mark Condon, returning from studies abroad to become PP Danesfort.
· Very Reverend Raymond Dempsey PP Inistioge to further studies.
· Very Reverend Eamonn O’Gorman PP Ballyragget and Conahy, appointed PP Lisdowney, residing in Ballyragget.
· Very Reverend Pat O’Farrell retires as PP Lisdowney to become CC to the Pastoral Area of Ballyragget, Conahy and Lisdowney
· Very Reverend William Hennessy, PP Castletown appointed PP Camross, residing in Castletown. Camross is grouped within the pastoral area of Borris-in-Ossory, Castletown and Seir Kieran.
· Very Reverend Liam Taylor PP Ballycallan appointed Administrator Tullaroan in succession to Monsignor Kieron Kennedy. Tullaroan is grouped in the pastoral area with the parishes of Freshford and Ballycallan.
· Very Reverend Dean Seamus McEvoy retires as Administrator of Seir Kieran (retirement effective 5 July 2020).
Commenting on the appointments Bishop Farrell said, “As you know very well, the past four months have been a very difficult time for people in our country and all across the world. People of faith, as individuals and communities, have not been immune to the challenges, the difficulties, and the pain of this time. Both people and priests have found themselves in a situation of significant spiritual and pastoral challenge. The difficulty of the situation has been compounded by the additional age-related and necessary restrictions on parishioners and priests. Even if the initial crisis has passed - and our gratitude is due to the significant dedication and sacrifice of those on the ‘front line’ - the pandemic is not over, and continues to have a big impact on how we relate to each other, how we work in our parishes, and how we pray together. In sum, the pandemic continues to affect how we carry out our sacramental and pastoral mission in the parish and in the Church. Notwithstanding fear, tiredness, and grief, priests endeavoured to stand with those bereaved and suffering even in the midst of the many restrictions and limitations imposed by the Government to curtail the spread of the virus. We have been blessed by their generosity, and by the openness of both national and local media to use modern technology in all its forms, so that many people were able to continue to pray the Mass together, and to profess the faith which they feel in the depths of their hearts.
“The very real challenges and risks of the pandemic may not be allowed to blind us to the broader pastoral situation in which we find ourselves, and which had concerned us all long before the current crisis. It is important that parishes remain alert to the possibility that a priest who retires or is moved to another parish might not be replaced. While parishes in that situation will be looked after pastorally and administratively by the priests in the pastoral area, the loss of their priest, is a very significant change in a parish. These challenges call us, both laity and ordained, to discover new ways to serve and support each other as we seek to follow the Lord in a new time.
“While I am concerned about the lack of candidates coming forward to offer themselves for diocesan priesthood, and to serve the sacramental and pastoral needs of our Church, I also know that our call is not to lose heart, but to hold on to the Lord’s promise to “be with us until the end of the age” (see Matthew 28:20). Like the beloved disciple at the Last Supper, we are held close to the Lord (see John 13:23), always in his providential embrace. He is the one who guides our feet on the way of discipleship and peace (see Luke 1:79). And so, although we are beset by many well founded concerns, let us lose neither hope nor trust in the Lord’s loving care for us, and his closeness to every one of us, and to his Church.”