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Catherine Wiley Homily Knock Pilgrimage

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MATHAIR AGUS SEAN ATHAIR NA EIREANN. FAILTE.

I would like to thank each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart, for coming here today. I would also like to thank everybody who has helped to make this Pilgrimage such a success.. A very very special thank you to Cardinal Sean, who has honoured us by his presence today and encouraged us immensely by his inspiring words.I would like to thank Our Priests, for without them we would have no faith No Eucharist. Remember them always in your prayers.

Pope John Paul 2nd, said that Shrines of Our Lady were the appropriate places for Families to come together to give thanks and to find their identity. So we are in the right place at the right time. We are here in our thousands united by a common goal. – to do the very best we can for our families and our grandchildren. This is the age of grandparents in the Church – the age when we are called upon to embrace our vocation to pass on the faith to the next generation. We are needed now, as never before, by our families, by the Church, by the world at large.

A great deal has happened since we met here last year and launched the beautiful prayer which our Holy Father wrote for us. We have kept our promise to share that prayer with grandparents all over the world. We first of all presented the Pope’s prayer to the Pontifical Council for the Family at its sixth world family congress in Mexico in January, where we distributed forty thousand copies, and with the help of the Pontifical Council we have had the prayer translated into all major languages. And as a result of our pilgrimage here in Knock we now have grandparents pilgrimages in Germany, the USA, Tanzania, Australia, and the Holy land. If you did not come here in your thousands, I could not go out there and tell other countries. So Irish grandparents are leading the world in this great work,. We are missionaries like our forefathers before us as well as being natural evangelists in our own families..

When I read that beautiful prayer in Mexico in front of all those prelates, Cardinals, Archbishops with wonderful robes and splendid titles I was struck by the titles that our Holy father bestowed on us grandparents- STRONG PILLARS OF GOSPEL FAITH, GUARDIANS OF NOBLE DOMESTIC IDEALS, LIVING TREASURIES OF SOUND RELIGIOUS TRADITIONS, THEM TEACHERS OF WISDOM AND COURAGE who pass on to future generations the fruits of their mature human and spiritual experience. These are titles of which anyone would be proud.

So there is no doubt about our importance at this critical time. In fact the need is so great, and your response to these pilgrimages so enthusiastic, that we think the time is ripe for establishing a forum where we could meet throughout the year to plan, discuss and pray together about our great task of handing on the Faith. It will be called simply ‘The Catholic Grandparents Association’. We will need volunteers to help us, local organizers to open branches and start groups. But most of all we will need every grandparent in this country and in this basilica to join the Association. . Please fill in the membership form that you have been given and return it to us today. Give it to one of the Volunteers, so that we can contact you..

We have enjoyed 1600 years of Faith in this country and we cannot be the generation that failed in handing it on. God has given us the time, the wisdom, the maturity to do so.. We now spend more time looking after our grandchildren than ever before. So let us use every opportunity to teach them and to show them the way, so that, in the words of our Holy Father, “We may one day be reunited with them in our heavenly homeland for the great embrace of life without end”..

To pass on the torch of Faith is our vocation – our job from which we can never retire. When we light this candle today let us resolve to pass on that torch of faith and pray that it never goes out in this country. Make this commitment now today, make sure you fill in this form and become a member of the Catholic Grandparents Association so that this light might shine throughout this country until we meet this time again next year on the 12th of Sepember . GURA MILE MIT AGAT SLAN AGUS BEANNACHT . We will now light the candle.

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Written by Catholic Grandparents Association

October 1, 2009 at 11:02 pm

Posted in Catherine Wiley, homily

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