Text onlyText-only Version
The Church of Ireland

The Church of Ireland
News Briefing

For Saturday 22nd September 2001

From: The RCB Library
Email: RCB Library

Summer in La Serenissima

Most Church of Ireland clergy, although they may move from parish to parish on a number of occasions, spend their careers within the island of Ireland. Some, however, do migrate to other provinces of the Anglican Communion and a small number are, at present, serving in the Diocese of Europe as chaplains to English speaking communities. Rupert Moreton is in Helsinki, Ian Sherwood in Istanbul, and Bryn Byrne in Lanzarote. Another of this company, the Revd John McKay, formerly vicar of St Bartholomew's, Dublin, is chaplain in Venice and during his summer break he was replaced by the Chaplain of Trinity College, Dublin, Dr Alan McCormack.

What were Dr McCormack's impressions of ministry in such an apparently exotic location? The immediate impression was of a city swarming with tourists and bursting at the seams, and so a key aspect of ministry at St George's Church was the simple, graceful, repetitive duty of hospitality and welcome. Sunday by Sunday there were new faces in the church to be welcomed and guided.

The regulars, perhaps a quarter of the congregation, are mostly from Britain and the USA, including a small smattering of the aristocracy. There are also some Venetians who are committed Anglicans and even a Serbian Orthodox organist and a Nigerian acolyte! Some live in Venice for only part of the year while others are full time residents - business executives, art critics, university lectures. Yet all are conscious of belonging to St George's, conscious that they form the Anglican Church in that place, and only too delighted to help with whatever needs to be done.

In Venice St George's welcomes those who visit and sustains those who reside. It is a distinctive Christian witness in an ecclesiastically saturated environment and one which values its close relationships with ecumenical partners. It is a church seeking to be of genuine service to anglophones on the move, and to any who find something valuable or attractive in the mix.

Today (Saturday) the Bishop of Cork will be the speaker at the 400th Anniversary of the Battle of Kinsale Dinner at which President McAleese will preside. In Redcross Church the GFS in Dublin and Glendalough will hold their Festival Service at which the preacher will be the Revd Sheila Zeitsman while in Wilson's Hospital, Multyfarnham, the Meath and Kildare Diocesan Synod will take place.

Tomorrow (Sunday) RTE will televise a Service of the Word with the Revd Michael Wooderson and the parishioners of Naas while BBC Radio Ulster will broadcast Morning Service from Dromore Cathedral where the rector is the Revd Stephen Lowry. The Mothers' Union Festival Service for the Dioceses of Tuam, Killala and Achonry will be held in St Nicholas' Collegiate Church, Galway, where the preacher will be the Revd Rab Mollan. In Christ Church, Tramore, the Bishop of Cashel and Ossory, will institute the Revd Derek Sargent as Vicar of the Waterford Cathedral group of parishes.

On Monday the Archbishop of Armagh will institute the Revd William Quigley as Rector of Killylea and Eglish and on Wednesday he will preside at the Mothers' Union Festival Service in Armagh Cathedral where the address will be given by Lady Eames.

On Wednesday the Archbishop of Dublin will licence student readers in the Theological College and on Friday he will preside at the Diocesan Service for Primary and Junior Schools, in Christ Church Cathedral, where the preacher will be the Revd Arthur Barrett, Rector of Booterstown and Mount Merrion. In Enniskillen the Bishop of Clogher will preside at his last Diocesan Synod before retirement.

Church of Ireland Notes appear in the Irish Times whose web site may be found at

Return to Newsbrief Index

Home | Latest Updates | Site Index | Search | Text only

Copyright © 1997-2007 Church of Ireland Central Communications Board

Contact us

Last update to this page was on 29 October, 2003