Patrician Year (1961): Archbishop McQuaid on the Conclusion of the Dublin Congress
The following letter from the Most Rev. John Charles McQuaid, Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland, was read out in all the churches of the Archdiocese of Dublin on Sunday, July 9th, 1961:
Very Reverend and Dear Father,
I wish to thank you for your share in the success of the Dublin Congress of the Patrician Year. I am grateful for the spiritual preparation that you organised in your parish.
It is a duty, but very much more a privilege, to thank the Faithful for their most generous co-operation. The very great numbers of those who went to Confession and received Holy Communion are an immediate proof of the Faith with which our appeal was answered. The marked place in the Congress taken by young persons, boys and girls, is to me perhaps the most consoling feature of all the week, for where the youth are interested, the future is secure.
This Congress must long be remembered by those who were given the grace to assist at its functions. The fact that the Vicar of Christ on earth, in a gesture of paternal affection, wished to make himself present in the person of a Legate already marked the Congress with the seal of Our Divine Master’s favour. The Legate a latere exemplified himself with a graciousness, self-sacrifice and courtesy that at once attracted the reverent affection of all the Faithful.
The choice of Cardinal Agagianian, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation that is concerned with the missions of the universe, was a delicate tribute to the share that Ireland has been allowed to take in bringing the Gospel message to foreign lands.
By the presence of so many Archbishops, Bishops and priests, representing the countries in which we have laboured for the Gospel of Christ, we were enabled, during those days, vividly to feel how truly we are united in the Faith, within the family of the one true Church.
No element of our life, religious or social, was missing in that union of the Faith. The President of our State most kindly acted as host to the Legate and the Papal mission. The Taoiseach, whose address at the concluding session will remain a classic statement of the willing acceptance of the claims of God in civic life; the members of the Government; the City Council; the local authorities; the organs of administration, Judiciary, Arms and the Garda, Trade Unions, University and learned bodies: one and all, dutifully and gladly, lent the dignity of their official presence to the many functions of the Congress.
And behind all those functions, especially in the crescendo of the Holy Mass celebrated in Croke Park, were the hidden people; the sick, the aged, the busy mothers held at home, the Sisters in their Convents; all they who, though absent in body but present by Faith, sustained the Congress by hearts upraised in silent prayer. To them, I would particularly express my gratitude.
For all who, by prayer and labour, offered to God this mighty act of gratitude for our holy Faith, I offer the grateful, humble prayer that God, by the intercession of His Blessed Mother, may preserve in us an enduring appreciation of the faith and a constant loyalty to the teaching of the Church.
Posted on September 30, 2011, in Archbishop John Charles McQuaid, Bishops' Pastorals, Irish Church-State Relations, Irish History, Missionaries, Patrician Year (1961). Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.