Cork, Cloyne and Ross Diocese commemorates the End of the War of Independence

The 11th July marked the Centenary of the Truce and the End of the War of Independence in Ireland.  It came into effect at 12 noon on that day and, although many people thought it would be a temporary halt in hostilities, it ended the conflict.

As part of the Cork, Cloyne and Ross Centenaries Commemoration and Reconciliation Project churches and chapels throughout the Diocese commemorated this event last Sunday. 

The Liturgical Advisory Committee created a special Order of Service focussing on remembrance and peace. Parishes used this Order of Service and memorial prayers in their churches, and read out lists of names of people who died in their area, compiled by local historians. 

Left Parishioners praying outside Novohal Church Right Rev. Hazel Minion leading the Commemoration Service in St Luke’s Church, Douglas

Just one of many examples took place in St Mary’s Church, Carrigaline where Canon Elaine Murray remembered Martha Nowlan, the great-aunt of current church organist Hilary Dring, who was killed on the 13th January 1921, before the Truce and at the hight of the atrocities committed against the civilian population. Canon Murray added Martha Nowlan’s name to the Carrigaline Union Remembrance Book during the service. 

Martha Nowlan

Bishop Paul Colton explained: 

This centenary was always ear-marked as a significant one in our Cork, Cloyne and Ross Centenaries Commemoration and Reconciliation Project.

The Government’s Decade of Centenaries Expert Group had identified this as a date of national importance, and, in commemorating this period, we were motivated by that recommendation. Our project in this Diocese covers the centenaries of the period 1914 to 1923 and, so far, in addition to participation in many local events, there have been commemorations of the First World War, the Easter Rising, the Battle of the Somme, Armistice, women’s suffrage, the Spanish Flu, the first Dáil, and now, the end of the War of Independence. Cork was at the heart of this period in our history; one hundred years is not that long ago.  Stories and memories have been passed down through families. Our project is about what the Christian Gospel brings to bear on us, as followers of Jesus Christ, in community with everyone else, as we commemorate.

You can watch a video of some of our clergy praying here.

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Walks for Charities in Crosshaven

The parishioners of the Templebreedy Group of Parishes met for the third time on Tuesday 6th July to walk together and raise money for charities. In May 2021 they raised €1,300 for Christian Aid and in June another €700 for the Alzheimer’s Society. The group walks from The Royal Yacht Club in Crosshaven to Rabbit Island where they all have tea, coffee, and cake. 

Rev. Isobel Jackson and her group of walkers

Rev. Isobel Jackson, Rector of Templebreedy Group, said: 

Many of our parishioners would walk this way on different days of the week, especially throughout the pandemic, so we thought it would be a nice idea to all meet together once a month. 

John Sweetnam and his mother Hazel, parishioners of the Glanmire and Cobh Union of Parishes, joined this walk in support of the Mother’s Union in Ireland. John is doing 21 walks as part of the “21 in 21” challenge created by June Butler, the All-Ireland President of the MU. John has raised money for ongoing projects such as supplies for local women’s refuges (CriTiCall), support for the Prison Resource Centre and Away From It All hampers and vouchers. 

Hazel and John Sweetnam

This month the Templebreedy Group of Parishes met simply to socialise but donations from this event and others in the future will go towards the Royal National Lifeboat Institution. 

Debbie Boyd, Norman Jackson, Rev. Isobel Jackson, John Sweetnam and Violet Chambers
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Take part in Climate Sunday!

In order to sustain and renew the life of the earth (one of the Five Marks of Mission of the Anglican Church) the Churches Together in Britain and Ireland are raising awareness for climate change. 

Climate Sunday is an initiative which is calling on local parishes to hold a climate-focused service ahead of the UN Climate Change Summit which takes place on 31st October 2021. 

Drone footage by David Wright

Canon Andrew Orr, recently appointed Honorary Canon at St Fin Barre’s Cathedral, Cork with special responsibility to raise awareness across the Diocese for environmental issues is the Chair of Eco-Congregation Ireland and member of the Church and Society Commission. On behalf of this Commission, he has worked together with many other voices to create the short video below encouraging local parishes to support Climate Sunday.

As a parish, you can register your interest and find information at These pledges will be presented to the UK Government at a Nations Climate Sunday Service in Glasgow on Sunday, 5th September 2021.

You can read the full article by the Church of Ireland here

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Model pupils of Dunmanway raise funds for charity and awareness of climate change

The pupils of the Model School Dunmanway raised over €300 in a sponsored walk for Christian Aid Ireland. 

Lisa Fagan, the Christian Aid Ireland Communication Officer, writes:

A sponsored walk by pupils of a historic school in west Cork has raised more than €300 for Christian Aid Ireland and highlighted the impact of climate change on some of the world’s poorest people.

Children at the Model School in Dunmanway walked around the grounds of their school for 5 kms while carrying a basin or bucket, symbolising the long journeys made by women and girls in drought-affected regions, in search of water.

Their walk was inspired by Rose Jonathan (68), a widowed grandmother from the Kitui region of eastern Kenya where severe drought and a changing climate mean that she must spend up to seven hours a day walking to fetch water for her family and livestock. Rose has been the sole carer for her six grandchildren since her husband died and her daughters moved to the city for work.

In the rural areas of many African countries, it falls to women and girls to collect water for their families and farm animals, and in drought-affected regions this can involve long and often dangerous journeys on foot. In Kenya, Christian Aid is responding to the crisis by funding the building of earth dams (low-tech community ponds) which capture and store water when the rains do come.

Pupils of Dunmanway Model School

Andrew Coleman, Christian Aid Ireland’s Bandon-based Church and Community Officer, said:

The Model School in Dunmanway is rightly proud of its most famous past-pupil, Sam Maguire, after whom Gaelic football’s most prestigious trophy is named. But we reckon they should be just as proud of this generation of young people for their compassion for those on the frontline of the climate crisis.

Our thanks go to all the children and their parents as well as their teacher Mrs Buckley. We don’t have a silver cup to give you but in our eyes, you’re champions!

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Open-air beach service in Kilgariffe Union

An open-air service was held at Courtmacsherry Beach on Sunday 4th July at 11am. Around 80 parishioners, visitors, and passers-by joined Rev. Kingsley Sutton from St John the Evangelist Church, Kilgariffe Union.

A service on the beach seemed to be the obvious response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The church holds approximately 16 people with social distancing in place which prevents it from holding services with larger numbers attending.

Morning worshippers at Courtmacsherry Beach

After the service Rev. Kingsley Sutton said:

The feedback has been very good and I think people have been very positive … the wind was a bit of a challenge, but thankfully it didn’t rain and everyone left with big smiles on their faces. There are some children making sandcastles over here … and it’s great to see a mixture of generations gathering again for worship. 

I hear people saying that they go for a walk on a Sunday morning and that’s where they spend their time with God and not necessarily in the church building. Part of me is sad because it is important for us to meet together as Christians … but of course people can meet with God outdoors in the beauty of creation. To bring the two together and to have a congregation outside here on the beach is hopefully a way of linking in to people’s spirituality so that they can make the connections themselves … Maybe even next week, someone might walk past and remember that we had a prayer meeting here, and maybe their thoughts will be taken to their faith and God.

Rev. Kingsley Sutton

With people turning up from as far away as Northern Ireland, Rev. Sutton said that seeing so many people worshipping again really affected him. 

That says to me that our Christian faith is alive and well even in the midst of this pandemic and that people are still keeping their faith in God going. That’s a great encouragement to everybody.

There will be another open-air beach service on Sunday 25th July and again at the end of August. 

Rev. Kingsley Sutton leading worship
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