On Saturday 7th November, on the invitation of the Right Rev. Dr Paul Colton, Bishop of Cork, Cloyne and Ross, the Most Rev. Dr Fintan Gavin, Bishop of Cork and Ross, made his first visit as Bishop of Cork and Ross to St Fin Barre’s Cathedral Cork.
Welcoming Bishop Gavin to the Cathedral, the Very Reverend Nigel Dunne, Dean of Cork, said he was delighted that this visit could at last take place to the site where Cork was founded and where Christian worship has been offered since the 7th Century. The Dean described the occasion – the dedication of a new votive candle stand and prayers of remembrance for those who have died of Covid-19 – as sombre, but as, nonetheless, appropriate, given its focus on shared liturgy and common prayer.
Explaining the delay in bringing about the occasion Bishop Paul Colton said:
Not long after Bishop Gavin arrived in Cork I was in hospital. Then, earlier this year, the Coronavirus Pandemic took hold. When things did quieten down over the summer months I was out of action for a number of months following an accident and subsequent surgery. But here we are!
At the start of the visit, Bishop Colton presented Bishop Gavin with a replica of the head of St Fin Barre. The heads of significant bishops from the 7th century until the time of the consecration of St Fin Barre’s Cathedral in November 1870 (150 years ago this month) are carved in the Bishop’s seat (cathedra) in the Cathedral.
Presenting the replica, Bishop Colton said:
‘I welcome you, and this small gift is a token of not only our friendship but also, more important, of our common inheritance in the Christian history in this place and in the Gospel.