This Sunday 29 January, Bishop Denis Nulty, Bishop of Kildare and Leighlin, will be the chief celebrant and preacher at 11.00am Mass in the Church of Saints Peter and Paul, Portlaoise, to mark the opening of Catholic Schools Week 2017. The Mass will be broadcast by RTÉ One television and RTÉ Radio 1.
The broadcast of the liturgy for Sunday’s Mass will include the participation of the local parish community of Portlaoise, as well as students, staff and parents from ten local schools. The music ministry will be led by Mrs Ann Bergin, musical director, along with parish choirs.
Catholic Schools Week 2017 takes place across Ireland, North and South, from 29 January to 4 February. Catholic Schools Week is an annual celebration which invites schools to give expression in an exceptional way to the ethos of Catholic education. It acknowledges the tremendous contribution that our Catholic primary and post-primary schools make, not just to Irish society, but to the mission of the Church.
This year’s theme, ‘Catholic schools: Learning with Pope Francis to care for our common home’ has been informed by Laudato Si’, the 2015 encyclical by Pope Francis on care for our common home. Laudato Si’ was the number one bestseller for Veritas in 2015 selling over 15,000 copies. The papal encyclical sold over 1,500 copies in 2016.
To help celebrate this special week, educational resources have been prepared to support students and teachers at primary and at post-primary level. #CSW2017 resources are now available from catholicbishops.ie and catholicschools.ie. A dedicated Facebook page called ‘Catholic Schools Week’ shares resources and information about local events around the country and it offers useful analysis on Catholic education.
This Sunday in Portlaoise, representatives from the following local schools will be attending the opening Mass for Catholic Schools Week:
- Primary: Holy Family Junior and Senior Schools; Scoil Bhride; Gaelscoil; Ratheniska National School; The Heath National School; Saint Francis Special School; and The Kolbe Special School.
- Post-Primary: Scoil Críost Rí Presentation School and the Christian Brothers School.
Monsignor John Byrne is the parish priest of Portlaoise, Co Laois, in the Diocese of Kildare & Leighlin. The curates of the parish are Fathers Paddy Byrne, Eddie Lalor, Terence McGovern and Tom O’Connor. For more on the parish see portlaoiseparish.ie.