Friday 26 April 2019

Thousands of volunteers wanted for Papal Mass; must be 'steady on your feet'

Around 500,000 people are expected to attend mass in the Phoenix Park on August 26.
Around 500,000 people are expected to attend mass in the Phoenix Park on August 26.
Margaret Donnelly

Margaret Donnelly

Thousands of volunteers are sought for the Papal Mass in the Phoenix Park next month, including ministers of Communion who are 'steady on their feet'.

Some 4,000 ministers of Holy Communion are being sought to help administer communion at the Papal mass on Sunday, August 26.

Around 500,000 people are expected to gather in the Phoenix Park, including 15,000 overseas visitors.

The roles are open to any of those who are already trained and assisting with the distribution of Communion in their own parishes and must be 'steady on your feet' according to the organisers.

On the day, although there will be some plastic tracking laid down, much of the distribution will be done in the grassy corrals of the mass site and volunteers will also need to pass garda vetting, even if you have been vetted for this ministry in your own parish.

Those lacking the experience required for communion administration can volunteer as stewards and work on the day will include helping to move up to 600,000 people into the park, around the park and then back out of the park after the Mass has ended.

While organisers say they will try to keep parish groups working together, they say it may not be possible for you to be assigned to minister in the place where your family or fellow parishioners are situated.

The organisers already have 4,500 ciboria newly made (patens for the communion hosts) and well over half a million hosts available and it's planned that the first main block of mass goers, around 78,000 people, will receive communion directly from the sanctuary area.

For the remainder of the people, who will be in corrals of around 1,400 people, there will be 16 ‘subchapels’ positioned beside large video screens.

On the day, mass goers can look forward to an array of Irish music and composers with choir rehearsals already taking place.

More than 2,000 members of the Papal Mass Choir gathered recently in the RDS to do a full run through of the music for the Closing Mass and in total, 3,000 voices from across all 26 dioceses will make up the main choir on the day.

Commenting after the rehearsal Derek Mahady said that he was heartened by the work and effort that each diocese has put into the preparation of the music for the papal Mass.

Online Editors

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News