Blessing of School Extension
Scoil Naomh Pádraig, Corracrin.
Friday, 4 May 2012
Fellow priests and friends,
I’m very happy to be with you this morning to bless this new and fine extension to your school. I am aware of the respect and affection which you have for your school and this is to be commended. I know you have every reason to be proud of your school and it staff, both teaching and auxiliary, and in this respect your community is privileged.
I would like to offer my own thanks and congratulations to the Principal, Michael Boyce, to the teaching staff and to the Board of Management. You have served the children well, you have served the community well and you have played a key role in the provision of these new facilities. I know that to meet the standards you considered appropriate involved an overspend and going into debt. I know that the debt involved is manageable and I am confident that the support you will receive from parents and community will enable you to clear that debt within a matter of years without over burdening anyone.
In this respect I would like to say that for many years I have admired your parish community here in Donagh. You are fortunate in having many members who are not only skilled in leadership qualities but are generous in giving of their time and energy for the common good. You are fortunate in having so many with vision and with a will to see things through. Passing through Emyvale and Glaslough you can see the result in your Churches, Community Centres, Cemeteries, Schools and in many other facilities. Well done and I hope that community spirit never wilts.
It would not be right to let the occasion pass without acknowledging the contribution of your priests to the welfare of your community. Many of those who served you so well in the past have accepted your kind invitation to be with you today and I know you would be happy to acknowledge and thank them for their legacy of generous service. Fr. Martin is off duty at the moment but I know the affection in which he is held and I know that I can say to him that few communities will be as happy as the people of Donagh when they welcome back their parish priest in a few months’ time. You are fortunate in his absence to have the services of such a wise and experienced shepherd as Canon McQuaid. He has given excellent service to the diocese in a variety of roles and I would like to thank him for sharing the riches of his experience with the people of the parish of Donagh in their time of need.
Finally to the children who will benefit most from these enhanced facilities, I can say to you that you are very fortunate children. You can show your gratitude for what has been provided for you by using these facilities as fully as possible. Learn as much as you can take and develop all the skills you can. That is the best preparation you can make for your life ahead. When you grow up, I would like to think you will give back to the community some of the care and attention which you have received. And remember God is continually sending out calls for helpers in his fields. It would be nice to think that some of you will take the place of the priests who are assembled here and that you will be there to baptise, to say Mass, to offer the sacrament of penance and all the other services which will be required by the children and families of the future. In the meantime may God be with you all to guide and direct you and to bless the good work of the school
+Liam S. MacDaid