60th Anniversary

St Gabriel's Church’s 60th Jubilee

60th Anniversary Celebrations 2016   
History of St. Gabriel’s Parish through the Decades.
Slideshow of photos take on the week-end of 
Fri. 30th September to Sun. 2nd October 2016

Welcome Address from Chairman of Pastoral Team, Liam Lally on Fri. 30th Septebmer.

St Gabriel’s Celebrates its Sixtieth Anniversary.   On behalf of the Parish Pastoral Team, I welcome you to this celebration of the 60th anniversary of St Gabriel’s church. 

To provide context for a better understanding of the significance of erecting this fine church in the 1950s, it is worthwhile, I think, to remind ourselves what life was like in Ireland at that time. Polio and TB were rampant, there was widespread poverty, high levels of unemployment, mass emigration, poor quality housing.  

But green shoots did begin to appear; indications of a new Ireland emerging.  TK Whitaker, and inspired by the writings of Bishop Philbin of Clonfert, devised Ireland’s first programme for economic expansion, which paved the way for the development of many indigenous Irish industries, creating much needed employment.

Tayto invented and produced the first cheese and onion flavoured crisps in a factory in Moore St. The Abbey theatre was burnt down but the show went on.  Bus Árus, with its novel design, was erected, hinting at the emergence of a modern Ireland, Bunaíodh Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Éireann, chun ceol agus amhranaíocht Gaelach a chothú, indicating a renewed confidence in celebrating Irish culture. 

In sport, Ronnie Delaney won a gold medal at the Melbourne Olympics; Mayo won two back to back all Ireland football medals.

It was in this Ireland, an Ireland of darkness and of light, that courageous men and women in this area, set about building this magnificent church in the early 1950s. They were men and women of great faith, great vision, great courage and great determination. 

We, the current members of this faith community, are the happy beneficiaries of what they achieved. This evening we take time out to salute those brave priests and parishioners of the 1950s, and also the many, many people who have built on, and added to, what those pioneers achieved.

A church building, like our own houses, needs constant care and attention in order to move with the times, withstand the internal ageing process, and resist external corrosive forces. As a house, however lavish its architecture and furnishing, may not necessarily become a warm welcoming home; so it is with a church building; however magnificent its design and fittings, it may not, of itself, provide a warm welcome for its prodigal sons and daughters. 

More is needed. And more was provided here in St Gabriel’s. We commend the priests and people who have given of their time and talents, so generously, in creating an environment that nourished and sustained the faith community of this parish over the last 60 years.  

For the next hour and a half Margaret Howard and her band of helpers will give you a snap shot of life in St Gabriel’s over the last 6 decades, through stories, songs and photographs. We invite you to relax and travel with us down memory lane. We begin with the combined choirs of the parish, singing what is the motto of our parish:

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