Broc’s Blog

 

Donnybrook Parish

Church of the Sacred Heart Web Site

Donnybrook Parish

LivingtheJoyoftheGospel 1Introduction

I wish to brief you on progress of the plans for the development of the parish of Donnybrook, initiated by my predecessors, the late Fr. Martin Clarke and Bishop Kevin Doran, in partnership with Fr. Conor Harper S.J., the Parish Pastoral Council and Finance Committee. The plan was to upgrade the Church, provide a new Parish Pastoral Centre and maximise the use of our Church grounds for parking. The plan required raising €2,000,000.  

 

Co-incidentally, inspired by Pope Francis’ ‘The Joy of the Gospel’, Archbishop Martin challenged the parishes of the Diocese to determine their requirements to build themselves up as communities of faith in Jesus Christ and set about securing the personnel and financial resources to do so.  He called the challenge, ‘Living the Joy of the Gospel’. As Donnybrook had already begun this process, we were asked and the Finance Committee agreed, to be one of the pilot parishes in this initiative.  

Living the Joy of the Gospel, as a Diocesan initiative, aims to support and sustain the three pillars of Catholic Parish life, the Church and gathering places, lay involvement in evangelisation, ministry and faith development and ongoing support for priests in active ministry.

Today we launch our parish plans under the Living the Joy of the Gospel initiative. There are four elements to our plans for Living the Joy of the Gospel in Donnybrook, the parish centre, car parking, the Church and contributing to a fund for the provision of a parish pastoral worker. We now need to raise €2.5M. Donnybrook will be using the funds we raise exclusively for this purpose. We also need to continue our support for the day to day running expenses of the parish.

 

Let me now expand on these individual elements:

 

A New Parish Pastoral Centre. The intention is to knock the Southside of the current building, and build back parallel to the Church, incorporating the lower ground floors of the presbyteries. This will provide a welcoming environment and facility for parishioners of all ages to come together and grow in faith and as a community.

 

Extra Parking. Relocating the Parish Centre, will open up the space behind the presbyteries for extra parking and provide a link between the front and the back of the grounds. We also propose using ground on the north side for parking.

 

The Church. For almost a century and a half, the Church of the Sacred Heart has served our parishioners well. However our infrastructure and internal layout requires renewal to serve parishioners into the future. Upgrading will involve, heating, lighting, entrances, flexible seating, wheelchair accessible toilets, enlarging our sanctuary and providing a place for the celebration of Baptism. As we look to the 150th anniversary in 2016 of the Church of the Sacred Heart, while the building itself is structurally sound, we need to make it suitable for the next fifty years. We want to preserve and enhance the legacy we have inherited for our children and grandchildren, continuing the wonderful story of our parish and Church.

 

The Pastoral Worker. Buildings can only fulfil their purpose if there are people in them. To help achieve this, we also need the services of a trained lay parish pastoral worker. There are already 27 parish pastoral workers, working with the priests in parishes of the Diocese. In 2009, Archbishop Martin put in place the Parish Pastoral Worker programme to utilise the gifts of the Spirit in the lay people of the Diocese and began a process of recruiting, training and deploying lay people in the service of the mission of the Church in the parishes of the Diocese. We would like to have the benefit of a Pastoral worker in Donnybrook, who would work mostly with the parents of young children. With the planned extension to St. Mary’s school and the Teresian School we will be able to provide school places for all the children from the parish, enabling us to have contact with young parents and ensure a future for our faith community.

 

LivingtheJoyoftheGospelTo undertake these works is a once in a generation undertaking for our parish, like the building of the apses in 1935. Securing the funds to complete the necessary work presents us with an extraordinary challenge but also a special opportunity. It requires sacrifice and the generosity of spirit and resolve of the men and women who built the Church of the Sacred Heart in the 1860’s.

 

To undertake our projects and play our part in Living the Joy of the Gospel we want to achieve our goal of €2,500,000 to be raised in pledges in the coming weeks. This is an ambitious challenge but it can be done.  I know, because, working closely with a small group of volunteers over the past few months, €1,560,000 (63%) of ourgoal has been pledged or contributed by first families who have pledged their support, to whom I am deeply grateful.

 

While well on our way, success from here depends upon you. I invite you to please consider joining us in supporting this vital initiative. We need everyone to consider supporting Living the Joy of the Gospel with a gift or pledge that is right for you. Together we grow and together with the help of God we will fulfil the mission of the Church.

 

Those whom I have not already contacted will receive information in the post about Living the Joy of the Gospel in the coming days and a volunteer working on behalf of the parish and my behalf,will call you, once you have had time to review the material.

 

I prayerful ask you to consider four things:

Read the pack carefully

Pray for its success

Consider supporting the initiative

Take a call from a volunteer.

 

If you don’t receive a pack in the post, packs will be available after all Masses next weekend. After considering the information, if you would prefer not to receive a call, please notify the Parish office.

 

When the money is committed, we will proceed with the planning process.

Thank you for your commitment to our parish community in Donnybrook. With the blessing of God, working together, we can look forward to success.