The Catholic Grandparents Association in the Cathedral Parish in Carlow celebrate mass on Saturday July 25th 2015 for the feast of Sts Joachim & Anne (Grandparents of Jesus) which is on Sunday July 26th. Bishop Nulty issued the following message to them:

Message of Good Wishes & Blessings on the Carlow Branch of the Catholic Grandparents Association.

We are all very familiar with the GAA and its huge influence on Irish society and life over the past 131 years. Well there is a new organization I feel, which we will become more familiar with in the years to come, it is the CGA – the Catholic Grandparents’ Association. Here in the Cathedral Parish in Carlow, the local branch was established in 2012 as a positive initiative stemming out of the Eucharistic Congress in Dublin that year. It is an organization, still very much in its infancy, having had its inaugural pilgrimage to Knock a few years earlier in 2007.

I applaud the work of you the members of the Carlow Cathedral Parish branch of the Catholic Grandparents’ Association since it was founded here. In the past year the branch’s new initiative of visiting the Primary Schools and teaching the Rosary is work appreciated by pupils, teachers and parents. Your association is rooted in the fourth commandment ‘Honour your Father and Mother’. Your organization has in it’s own unique way brought a deep sense of honour and respect to the vocation of parenting in 2015. You are the ones who know how it’s done, so why shouldn’t you share your skill set with the next generation.

As we get closer to next October’s Synod on the Family, I know that the work and mission of the Catholic Grandparents will increase in the aftermath of the Synod. A quote often attributed to grandparents when they talk of their grandchildren: “it’s lovely to see them coming, it’s lovely to see them going home”, but the important point is that they return home boosted in their faith and appreciation of the family. I love the fact that St. Joachim and St. Anne are seen as the role model for grandparents; how appropriate it is that the grandparents of Jesus, the parents of Our Lady, should become the template for all who strive to be faith-filled grandparents today.

With Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, who I might respectfully describe as ‘the Grandparent Pope of our church’, I pray the concluding line of his ‘Prayer for Grandparents’: “Mary, Mother of all the living, keep grandparents constantly in your care, accompany them on their earthly pilgrimage, and by your prayers, grant that all families may one day be reunited in our heavenly homeland, where you await all humanity for the great embrace of life without end. Amen”. I wish the Carlow Branch of the Catholic Grandparents’ Association every blessing, every grace and every good wish at this time.

+ Bishop Denis Nulty