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A time to say Thanks.

Tuesday last, September eighth was the Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary; a day when the church celebrates the great gift that Mary was and is in our lives. For us, in the parish of St. Mary’s, Mary’s birthday this year also marked another great occasion and that was the official blessing of the recently erected Statue of Our Lady outside of Our Lady, Queen of Peace Church in Coosan. The statue was gifted to our parish by the Sisters of La Sainte Union in Mont Vista and many who are familiar with Mont Vista will recall seeing the statue outside of the former nursing home on Retreat Road. Unfortunately, the recent government restrictions implemented because of Covid-19 meant that we could only have fifteen people in attendance at the outside gathering. We were however heartened that so many of the sisters of La Sainte Union could attend as well as a limited number of representatives of our parish community.     

After the sale of the Nursing Home, the Sisters generously offered the statue to our parish and needless to say, we were very happy to accept their generous gift. The Parish Pastoral Council discussed, at great length, where the statue might be best placed and a fitting home was found for it outside of Our Lady, Queen of Peace church in Coosan. Taking the turn for the Coosan Point Road, the Statue stands proudly at an angle facing the road and just behind the rock that bears the name of the church.

We are deeply indebted to the sisters for their generosity, not just for the statue but for gifting the parish with a rich legacy of education for many generations as well a number of other religious artefacts that you will see in our parish; the Statue of the Sacred Heart between St. Mary’s Church and Presbytery, the Sanctuary Light in St. Mary’s Church and the Statue of the Sacred Heart inside of Our Lady, Queen of Peace Church. On behalf of the priests on our parish team and the parishioners of our parish, I want to take this opportunity to record our gratitude and appreciation to the Sisters of La Sainte Union for their great generosity and support.

I also want to take this opportunity of acknowledging a number of other people who were instrumental in both the erecting and the enhancement of the Statue; David Lowe and his son Harry for helping to remove and transport the pedestal, Brendan, Stephen, John McEnroe and Alan Furey for the endless hours they spent in laying the foundation, sandblasting and repairing the pedestal and erecting both the pedestal, statue and sign, Liam O’Connor for carrying out the necessary repairs to the statue, Maurice Flynn, Joe Johnson and the staff of E. Clarke for illuminating the statue, Mark Rode and his wife Jacinta Guinan for cleaning, sanding, sealing and painting the statue, Danielle and the staff of Spectrum Signs for the sign that acknowledges the donors and Ian, Bart and John Paul on our Community Employment Scheme for their meticulous gardening around the Statue.

All of whom have played their part and used their God-given talents to help ensure that this beautiful statue, fashioned to the honour of Our Lady, will act as a fitting reminder of the protective presence of Mary in our lives as our Mother and as an intercessor to her Son, Jesus Christ. May Mary our Mother cast her protective mantle on us, her children, helping us in every decision we make and in every journey we undertake.

Fr. Declan

September 11th 2020.