Many Thousands Mark Year's Holiest Week

Christian communities the length and breadth of Ireland have been gathering to mark what for many is the most sacred week of the year. 

Several hundred joined the Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Diarmuid Martin yesterday in a public acknowledgement of faith, walking behind the cross through the Phoenix Park in Dublin doing the 'Way of the Cross'. This annual event organised by the Communion and Liberation movement has become a huge manifestation of public faith.

In other villages outside the capital, many people took the streets to take part in outdoor ‘stations of the cross’.  In Prosperous, Co Kildare, men, women and children processed behind a wooden cross from the local cemetery to the Church of Our Lady and St Joseph stopping along the way to recall the stages of Jesus’ passion, reciting the rosary and taking it in turns to carry the cross, in an atmosphere of deep recollection."It was very prayerful,"  Bernadette O'Connor from Prosperous told ciNews.

Last night in Malahide, many people joined the annual Follow the Way of the Cross procession at 6.30pm from one church in Malahide, the Sacred Heart Church, Yellow Walls to another, St. Sylvester’s Church. Afterwards people stayed on to pray around the cross.

In Dublin, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin joined the Church of Ireland Archbishop of Dublin, Dr Michael Jackson to lead an Ecumenical procession through Dublin city centre.  The walk began at Christ Church Cathedral after a moment of prayer at 7.15pm and then participants carried a Taizé Cross to the Pro Cathedral. 

The long tradition in the Church of gathering in the darkness on Easter morning for a dawn Mass will be followed in dioceses across Ireland.  In Co Clare, at 6.30am tomorrow Mass will be offered in the open air on a rock behind Doolin Pier overlooking the Cliffs of Moher. Organisers say if the weather is  “exceptionally stormy” this Mass may be transferred to Doolin Church at the later time of 6.45am.

In Kildare the parish of Bagnelstown is organising a dawn Mass on Mount Leinster and an Ecumenical Dawn Service will take place at the Moat of Ardscull, Athy.  Dawn Mass will also take place at 6am in St. Conleth’s Church Garden, Newbridge, Co Kildare on Easter Sunday morning.

In the west of Ireland, a dawn mass in Irish will take place overlooking Dingle Bay at 6.00am at Baile Riabhach (Ballymoreigh),  while on the east coast of Ireland, an annual Sunrise Celebration of Prayer and Reflection will happen at 6.25am in Howth and on the south beach of Arklow at 6.15am.


Susan Gately - Catholic Ireland




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