Mass in Memory of all Subscribers & Contributors of An Coinneal
Very heavenly voices of the Louisburgh Church Choir sang “I’ll Light a Candle for you” hailing the start of Mass in St. Patrick’s Church Louisburgh on Sunday 14th August 22.
A most fitting hymn as the Mass was dedicated to the memory of all who had contributed to An Coinneal, the parish magazine, since 1959. A packed church listened while some members of the outgoing committee participated in the readings and prayers.
A small tortoiseshell butterfly continued to flutter from the rafters just over head, dipping and rising again through the crowd. One couldn’t help but think it may have been a past contributor supervising the proceedings.
After mass everyone walked the short distance up long street to the town hall. A brief history of An Coinneal’s foundation to the present day was eloquently delivered by the out-going editor John Lyons. He, who has a ‘way with words’, explained that the current committee were disbanding after having volunteered much time over the years. He introduced the O’Malley Twins- Peter and Richard, who would unveil a plaque in the foyer of the hall.
Peter and Richard O’Malley were featured on the front cover of An Coinneal 1965, then two young altar servers, as they were lighting the Paschal Candle in St. Patrick’s Church Louisburgh. A fitting tribute to the past that these gentlemen should unveil the beautifully commissioned plaque.
The plaque itself was made by a local stonemason Pat Kitterick, from Cregganbawn. A beautiful wall mounted plaque that can be seen by all who visit the town hall.
Fr. Mattie, in Blessing the plaque, prayed that it will be a reminder of those who during their lives, served the people of our parish in the production of An Coinneal magazine. May it also serve as a sign of faith and hope in God’s love towards us. A magazine that kept all in far away corners of the earth firmly rooted in their home parish.
Of course there was lots of cake and tea and chat afterwards. Stories retold of articles that were published over the years, memories shared of natives from the parish who lived in other countries and yet were ‘agents’ for An Coinneal, making sure a copy of each issue would make its way to the homes of Louisburgh emigrants.
A nostalgic trip back in time remembering people and their generosity and sense of community spirit.
Special tribute was paid to Fr. Leo Morahan, (RIP) who had the foresight, courage and will to continue An Coinneal down through the years. A man very rooted in community and the betterment of its people. We remember them all with a prayer.
We are grateful to the out-going committee: John Lyons, Margaret Gallagher, Mariead Staunton, Breda McGinn, and Mary Keane for their dedicated volunteer time and energy over the past years in keeping the flame burning for An Coinneal.
In Louisburgh-Killeen Heritage we are so thankful to the committee for their generous response to our request to digitalise the past issues. Let us hope that where there is a glimmer of light, hope will prevail and we shall see what An Coinneal shall become into the future.