Read the full text of Bishop Moriarty’s Chrism Mass homily in which he spoke of the current darkness in the Catholic Church but also of the signs of hope that exist around us now and for the future.

Chrism Mass

Click here to download – Bishop Moriarty’s Chrism Mass Homily

The Chrism Mass is the largest diocesan celebration held during the year. It is a special occasion to gather as a diocesan family – bishop, priests and people to support and pray for one another, to remember and pray for the people of our diocese and beyond. This celebration is traditionally held in Holy Week before the celebration of the Triduum.

During the liturgy the bishop blesses the holy oils that will be used in the celebration of the sacraments in all 56 parishes in the coming year. It also includes a renewal of ordination vows by the priests of the diocese.

In his homily the Bishop quoted Pope John Paul II words which he spoke to young people attending World Youth Day event in Totonto in 2002,

Although I have lived through much darkness, I have seen enough evidence to be unshakably convinced that no difficulty, no fear is so great that it can completely suffocate the hope that springs eternal in our hearts. Do not let that hope die! Stake your lives on it!

He spoke about the “darkness” in the Catholic Church in Ireland at the present time and likened it to the Good Friday experience. He spoke about the courage and bravery of the survivors of clerical abuse and reiterated Pope Benedicit’s words saying

You have suffered grievously and I am truly sorry


In welcoming the Parish Designated Persons from throughout the diocese who have completed the Safeguarding Children training programme, he thanked them for the great generosity and leadership they have shown in responding to this very important role but reminded everyone, not just the Designated Leaders, that none of us can become indifferent around Safeguarding Children and presume that once there is a policy in place everything is satisfactory but that we must constantly review and work together as people and priests in this task so as to ensure the safety of all children in our care.

He complimented and thanked the many people throughout the diocese who give of their time so freely in making a difference in the life of the church. Those who commit themselves to the ministries of music, reading, Eucharistic ministry, safeguarding children, bereavement ministry. People that give of their time to serve the needs of young people at local parish level, young people themselves involved in Meitheal leadership groups. The major effort put in by so many parents and parish leaders in the pre sacramental programmes offered to First Communion and Confirmation candidates, the liturgy committees, Justice and Peace groups, the Parish Pastoral Councils, people involved in prayer ministry and charity work, those who quietly lend their support in making sandwiches and the pot of tea and said that surely through all of this we can see that the Gospel is being lived out by so many people in a real and active way all throughout the length and the breath of the diocese.

Renewal of Ordination Vows

As he welcomed the priests of the Diocese who gathered to renew the vows they first made at their ordination he acknowledged that these were difficult times for them but assured them of the respect and care that many people had for them and that their efforts, generosity and commitment was very much appreciated. He called on them to remember that the way forward is to turn more deeply to the Gospel of Jesus Christ as the Gospel always offers new possibility, even in the darkest of times.

Going forward he stressed the need of a church of openness, transparency and accountablity, a Church which treasures each and every person and sees in them the face of God and challenges us to walk our talk and live out our convictions and live the truth outlined in the Gospel.