Annual Mass of Remembrance St John’s Cemetery, Ballinrea.

St John's Cemetery

Death creates a heartache which in time will heal, love creates memories which death cannot steal.

On Wednesday, 8th August, at 7.30pm we celebrated our annual Mass of Remembrance in St John’s Cemetery, Ballinrea. Although we had a fabulous summer, the weather in August had taken a turn for the worst. However, although rain was forecasted it remained dry during the Mass. It was a little chilly but that is only to be expected as the cemetery is vast and is situated on top of a hill. The mourners came well prepared with their jackets, and those who needed to sit down during the celebration of Mass brought their own folding chairs.

With every passing year the number of bereaved parishioners attending the Mass increases as more of our loved ones, and those of our neighbouring parishes, are called to God. There were approximately 55 souls buried in this cemetery since our annual cemetery Mass last year.

Fr Kevin our parish priest celebrated the Mass. He welcomed everyone to the cemetery and apologised for the lack of a sound system. Members of the parish choir sang Lay your hands gently upon us for the entrance hymn. Kieran read the lesson from the Prophet Isaiah while the choir sang The Lord is my Shepherd for the responsorial psalm. Fr Kevin read from the holy gospel according to John. For his homily, Fr Kevin spoke about the pain, heartache and tears associated with the passing of a loved one and that our prayer is be for them to be at peace with God, and for us to be reunited with them in heaven. 

At the end of Mass and before the blessings of graves Fr Kevin once again thanked everyone for their prayful attendance; he thanked the members of the parish assembly for helping to organise the Mass, Kieran for reading the lesson, members of the parish choir for enhancing the ceremony, the Eucharistic Ministers for their help in distributing Holy Communion. He also thanked Mick, the cemetery caretaker, who went above and beyond the call of duty to assist in any way he could to facilitate the celebration of the Mass. The choir sang How great thou art as the Mass was ending.

Fr Kevin then proceeded to bless the graves of our loved ones buried in this cemetery. 

Just as the Mass was concluding a big dark cloud emerged in the sky and remained there during the blessing of the graves. It seemed as if the sun was honouring the pain experienced by the bereaved at the loss of their loved ones by casting some darkness during the graves’ blessing.





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