THIS Thursday, November 29, marks a special day in The Parish of Clonoe.
It was on that day 25 years ago in 1987 that the new church of St Patrick was opened and dedicated by His Eminence, Cardinal Tomás O’Fiaich.
This year the parishioners of Clonoe will celebrate the event with a four day period of prayer and reflection, culminating in a Thanksgiving Mass on Thursday at 7:30pm.
The new church design was based on the Cross shaped pattern of the old adjoining church of St Patrick which it replaced.
This old church had served the faithful of the parish for over two hundred years.
Many of the religious artefacts from the old church were incorporated into the new church, including the Altar, stained glass windows and statues, giving a continuous reminder of the past and the deep faith of those who have since passed away.
Parishioners will look back fondly on the many happy occasions attended in both churches down the years with countless Baptisms, First Communions, Confirmations and Weddings having taken place.
Sad times will also be recalled when loved ones have been laid to rest in the adjoining cemetery after Requiem Mass.
To celebrate the anniversary, a special book has been produced outlining the impact the new church has had on its people during that time.
It describes in detail the intense liturgical life that has taken place in St Patrick’s Church over the last 25 years.
It takes the reader through the planning, architectural splendour and opening of the new church as well as detailing the main events that have taken place there.
With over 500 photographs in 52 chapters, the covers all the Sacramental events as well as Silver and Golden Jubilee celebrations of priests who have served Clonoe during that period.
It also shows how lay involvement in various active parish groups portrays the ideals of Vatican II and how they contribute successfully by example to church life in Clonoe.
The launch of the book will take place at the Saturday Vigil Mass in St Patrick’s on 24th November at 7:30pm. This Mass will also herald the start of the four day Parish Mission which will be conducted by The Ember Team, Vincentians on Mission.
This historic occasion is another important milestone in the life of the parish known far and wide as “Glorious” Clonoe.