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“My Life in Your Hands” sermons of the late Fr John Cummins

Second book of writings by priest 

Following the ‘runaway success’ of the first book, the family of a Kildare & Leighlin priest who died in a freak car accident four years ago have issued a second publication in his memory.

This new book, also named “My Life in Your Hands”, contains more sermons of Fr. John Cummins (52) who was fatally injured outside his home in Abbeyleix in January 2019.

Sales of the first volume of “My Life in Your Hands” far exceeded expectations when issued last autumn and an immediate reprint had to be ordered to meet strong pre-Christmas demand.

The new publication is an accompaniment to the initial book.

Fr. John’s sermons were carefully filed on his personal computer and discovered by his family after his tragic accident. His sister and two brothers decided to publish them so that people could still share his thoughts and reflections. 

The first book contained the sermons for Sundays in Year A of the 3-year liturgical calendar.

This second volume contains Fr. John’s sermons for Year B and Year C of the church cycle. It also contains reflections for secondary school students, tributes by friends and numerous photographs.

In a foreword, Bishop Fintan Monahan of Killaloe described the first book as a ‘runaway success’ and he was glad the wells of wisdom from John are now being tapped into again. He said the sermons are packed full of careful study, hard work, practical down-to-earth experience and prayerful discernment. 

Bishop Denis Nulty also welcomed the new volume saying it will help priests and people to understand God’s word more deeply. 

Dermot Luddy, a former Maynooth classmate of Fr. John’s, now a married academic in the USA, recalls that even though John would have been a wonderful priest-professor he had no such ambition. Instead, he preferred parish work – and serving the Lord and his people brought John genuine joy.

The late Fr. Cummins was known for his good humour and easy manner as well as his preaching skills. As a young priest, he spent five years in Rome studying for his doctorate in Celtic Spirituality.

Fr. John spent most of his priestly ministry in Carlow town where he was chaplain in the then Regional College and Administrator in the Cathedral. A native of Newbridge, he earlier served in Naas. He became PP of Abbeyleix and Ballyroan only 18 months before his death. 

The homilies of Fr. John are rooted not only in scripture, but also in the everyday issues of contemporary Ireland.  They will be useful for personal reflection at any time and will be valued by anyone with an interest in religion and spirituality. “My Life in Your Hands” retails at 15 euro and all proceeds after printing costs will be donated to the diocese of Kildare and Leighlin. It is available in parish offices throughout the diocese and Woodbine Books Kilcullen and Farrell & Nephew, Newbridge.