|Brigidine News 2007
The end of January saw the final preparations being done for our Bi-centenary celebrations and last minute alterations for the
celebratory dinner at Copthorne Conference Centre were made. Cathy Tuckerman (Stewart) a St. Bride's Old Girl, undertook the
decoration of 16 circular tables, the room and stage. One hundred and sixty people had replied to our Bi-centenary Dinner
invitation and twenty three Priests had indicated that they would be present at the Jubilee Mass.
The launch of our Bi-centenary year, 1st February 2007 dawned warm and overcast. New Zealand was the first country to set the wheels
in motion for our Congregation’s celebrations. St. Patrick’s Church in Masterton was packed for the 10 am Mass. Archbishop John Dew,
assisted by Bishops Peter Cullinane, Owen Dolan, Brian Keogh OCSC and Monsignor John Carde officiated at the Mass, with 23 Priests
in the sanctuary.
The tolling of the bell reminded all present that Bishop Daniel Delany, founder of the Brigidine Sisters, defied British authorities
by ringing the Angelus Bell out across the land. Banners depicting the Brigidine and the Bi-centenary Logos lead the procession into
the church. Archbishop John Dew’s homily spoke about “…a story of passionate commitment to the Gospel, a story of hard work,
adventure and determination by the 1709 Brigidine women who have laboured in Ireland and in all branches of Delany’ls Oak.” He
thanked the Sisters for their presence, their contribution to Catholic Education, for their spirit of hospitality and for being,
“The flash of love, a flash of fire and a flame of God”.
During the Offertory procession, the “Book of Names” registering the names of all the Sisters who had died since 1807 and an oak
candlestick fashioned from a branch of the 200 year old oak tree still standing in Tullow were carried in the procession. The
Sisters, with candles alight, renewed their vows before Communion.
The celebratory meal at Copthorne Conference Centre was everything we had hoped for. The decorations were very Brigidine- plenty of
colour, acorns, oak leaves, St. Brigid’s lamp and cross decked the tables and walls. The Bi-centenary cake was beautifully iced in
the shape of a shamrock. The day was a fitting beginning to a year long celebration.
The Brigidine Focus magazine concentrated on the celebrations that had taken place around our Congregation, in February. Special
publications, “Through the Seasons”. “Glimpses”, commemorative cards and the DVD “Heritage and Horizon” shared by Provinces and
Regions have all contributed to the excitement of celebrations. yet to come.