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25.04.2022

Celebrating a living community – 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church Castlemacadam

Anniversary service and concert bring year of celebration to a close.
Celebrating a living community – 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church Castlemacadam  - Anniversary service and concert bring year of celebration to a close.
A tree is planted to mark the 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church, Castlemacadam. Pictured – former Rector Canon George Butler, Bruce Middletown, Priest in Charge Suzanne Harris, Archbishop Michael Jackson, Janet Kirwan and Uta Raab.

Parishioners of Castlemacadam, Ballinaclash and Aughrim gathered on Sunday morning to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church in Castlemacadam. The service, at which Archbishop Michael Jackson was the preacher, was part of a weekend of festivities which saw about 300 people attending a concert in the church on Friday evening.

Over €2,000 was raised at the concert for the Irish Red Cross’s work for the people of Ukraine. The programme included the Avondale Voices choir, Karla and Avril from Avoca Parish, Emily from Greystones Community College and parishioners Becky, Bruce and John. Erica and Elsa sang a duet and Venetia did a poetry reading.

On Sunday morning, parishioners gave thanks for all who had gone before them and for the worship and witness which has taken place in the area since 1430. After the service a tree was placed in the church grounds to mark the occasion.

In his sermon, the Archbishop said it was wonderful to celebrate the anniversary of the church. “The church as a living and a sharing community of people, knit together within the love of God the Holy Trinity, carries on throughout and in the face of political events, regardless of wars and rumours of wars; and for countless generations, the church has offered a constancy and a stability in the lives of so many people in joy and in sorrow. Events affect its working. Events do not distort its purpose. The church heralds God’s presence and God’s people in the world,” he said.

Reflecting on the Gospel reading [St John 20: 19 “… Jesus came and stood among them and said, Peace be with you…”], Archbishop Jackson said that the gift of peace was to be cherished and nurtured.

“We seek peace today as perhaps never before in the lifetime of our own generation with the brutality of warfare in Ukraine, with millions of women and children dispersed across the world and separated from their menfolk who have no option but to stay and fight. Having just emerged from the deepest and starkest Lockdown known to any of us through the ravages of Covid–19, we now find ourselves to be spectators in the arena of war, with instant communications so sophisticated as never before known, that we see atrocities as they happen; and also we are responders to human tragedy and helplessness such that we never expected to happen in a sophisticated and civilized Europe in 2022. Peace is more than the absence of war. Peace is a state of settled living that enables young and old to flourish without fear of their own destruction and that enables the common good to be much more than the quest for raw survival or trying in vain to secure dignified burial for the dead,” he stated.

He added that on the 150th anniversary of Castlemacadam Church, as they remembered with thanksgiving all who had gone before and their contributions to the life of the church and its community, the gift of peace had been expected but world history showed that it could change in an instant.

The Archbishop suggested that peace could be described in three words: harmony, relationships and ecology. He said that each generation had the chance to shape the inheritance of the church, not in its own image but in the image of God as reflected in the people of God and the people of the world and the world itself.

You can read the Archbishop’s sermon in full here.

Parishioners of Castlemacadam, Ballinaclash and Augrim watch the tree planting to mark the 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church, Castlemacadam.
Parishioners of Castlemacadam, Ballinaclash and Augrim watch the tree planting to mark the 150th anniversary of Holy Trinity Church, Castlemacadam.

 

Preparing to plant the commemorative tree outside Castlemacadam Church.
Preparing to plant the commemorative tree outside Castlemacadam Church.

 

 

 

 

 

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