‘Fr Peter has steered us through troubled waters and we thank him for all he has done’


This weekend we said goodbye to Fr Peter and we await the arrival of Fr Saju this coming Wednesday.

Looking back to September 2019 when we met Fr Peter for the first time, we did not realise the extent of the challenges that we would face together – probably the greatest challenges that the recent Church has faced outside of war.

I am of course referring to the Covid pandemic, the closing of churches, having to conduct services over zoom with no congregation.

We were not able to receive the Blessed Sacrament, our very life-blood and the life-blood of the Church itself.

Fr Peter steered us through these troubled waters, just as Jason steered the argonauts away from the rocks and siren voices calling in different directions.

They were not easy times for any of us; funerals with just a handful of mourners all sat apart; weddings with just the bride and groom and four others allowed. When churches were opened half of the pews were roped off so that we could not sit or interact together. Lists were produced and the pastoral team endeavoured to regularly call every person registered on the Church Suite database.

We are now in much happier times and thank Fr Peter for all that he has done for the parish.

Those of you who have joined the parish in the past ten or so years will be wondering what Fr Saju is like. Many of us will remember him from his time with us as our Assistant Priest. He will be different!Just as Fr Peter was not Fr Tom who was not Fr Pat who was not Monsignor Daly etc. Each priest brings his own unique gifts and charisma, but they all have one thing in common: Like branches that cannot survive, let alone bear fruit when severed from the vine, all their spiritual lives have a deep and sustaining connection to Christ through prayer.

It is not about individual accomplishments but about contributing to the flourishing of the whole community. We are all called to embrace boldness in our proclamation and living of the Gospel, to foster a community grounded in love and service, and to bear fruit that brings glory to God.

We bid a fond farewell to Fr Peter and welcome Fr Saju with joy.