Two new rectors in the United Dioceses of Cork, Cloyne and Ross had their first opportunity since their arrival in the Diocese to worship together with their parishioners in person in their local churches in recent days. Both had been instituted by the Bishop, Dr Paul Colton, during the post-Christmas lockdown.
The Reverend Meurig Williams was instituted on the Feast of the Epiphany (6th January) to Mallow Union and the Reverend Ivan Ruiters was instituted to Kinneigh Union on 4th February.
As well as celebrating the Eucharist in Saint James’ Church, Mallow for parishioners on Ascension Day, the Reverend Meurig Williams welcomed the Reverend Tony Murphy who was passing through Mallow on his sponsored walk across the Diocese in aid of the Diocesan Maize Project in Burundi.
In his Sermon, Meurig emphasised ‘…how the risen Christ takes our broken humanity to the heart of God: not just our achievements and triumphs; but our wounds, our flaws, our sickness and grief.’
Afterwards he said:
It was a particular delight for all to be able to gather again, even in a socially distanced way, after such a demanding period of lockdown. At least parishioners could now see that their new Rector was more than a virtual reality!
Sunday, 16th May was the first occasion on which the Reverend Ivan Ruiters had the opportunity to journey to the churches of his parish in mid-west Cork for Sunday worship.
Speaking about is afterwards, Ivan said:
Today was an absolutely wonderful experience for me as I began conducting my first services in church. We had a good turnout at both services and everyone expressed how pleased they were to be able to worship in church again.