Bishop asks his flock to pray that the summer deluge will stop
THE apocalyptic Irish summer weather has prompted a bishop to call on his flock to pray this weekend for an end to the incessant rain.
Ferns Bishop Denis Brennan made the plea this week a day after the cancellation of the county's biggest agricultural show, the Bannow Rathangan Show in Duncormick due to the waterlogged surface, stating that prayers will be offered in Parishes across Co. Wexford this weekend and reproduced in Newsletters / Parish Websites / Facebook Pages for an end to the rain which has made the summer 2012 one of the most depressing in living memory.
Bishop Brennan was prompted to make the call having met a local farmer on his way to the annual Ferns Diocesan Pilgrimage to Knock. The farmer - contending with the continuing poor weather and its adverse effects on farming in Ireland - asked Bishop Denis Brennan, "say one for me, we all need a prayer sometime."
Bishop Brennan wasted no time to expand on this theme by making a request “to our parishes and to the diocese for prayers for fine weather are many at present”.
“ In truth, they range from the very heartfelt of the farming community to those of parents whose children are looking to get outdoors and enjoy the best of the summer holidays," he said.
"Our real thoughts and prayers are with the farming community at this time. I am very conscious of the vital role it plays in our society and our economy. This persistently poor weather is a real threat to crops and livelihoods - and it now spells extra animal feed costs. Traditionally May and June are months when it is possible to save the hay and cut the silage. This opportunity has now been lost in many cases and real difficulties continue to exist in getting on to land to spray", he added.
"Many of our farming families are experiencing real strain and anxiety as they grapple with the prospect of a continuation of the current poor spell and its threatened adverse effects on the annual harvest", he continued.
In conclusion he said that "Two years ago, I was asked to offer prayers in our Churches for an improvement to poor weather on the eve of the Harvest. This weekend, we are asking our parishes to offer the prayer again."
"Agriculture is playing an ever more vital role in the efforts for national recovery. In offering the prayer as a diocesan family, I am asking the people of the diocese to offer solidarity to those who work in - and depend on - agriculture, and to be aware of the acute distress they experience and fear at present."
The prayer to be read out is: “All-powerful and ever-living God, we find security in your care and love for us. Give us the fine weather we pray for and need. May the harvest be secured and the hard work and efforts of so many of our people come to fruition. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen.”