This year’s ecumenical service for the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity was held in St. Cronan’s Church of Ireland last Friday evening when Bishop Kieran O’Reilly, Roman Catholic Bishop of Killaloe, preached to a large congregation comprising of members of all the Christian communities in the town.
Bishop O’Reilly received a very warm welcome on what was his first visit to the Church of Ireland in Roscrea, and he spoke of his delight at being present as he explored the theme of justice, based on a quotation from the prophecy of Micah. The service had been compiled by an ecumenical group in south India and the Bishop used his own experiences of India to talk about the need to break down existing barriers and open doors which remain closed on the journey to greater unity between the churches and to justice for all. The service was led by the Rev. Lesley Robinson, Church of Ireland Priest-in-Charge, assisted by Fr. Tom Corbett, PP., the Rev. Brian Griffin, Methodist Minister, Adrian Hewson, Lay Reader, and Pastor Ken Baker, of the Elim Pentecostal church.
Prayers and readings were done by members of all four communities. Roscrea Community Choir enhanced the music under the direction and accompaniment of Joan Murray, while Marjorie McCorduck played the organ for the congregational hymns. After the service the congregation enjoyed refreshments in the church, the friendly and relaxed atmosphere befitting the excellent ecumenical relations which exist between the different church communities in Roscrea.