Brenda Kennedy (centre) Chairperson of Rathangan Credit Union makes a presentation to Sr Bernadette and Sr Rosarii. Photo: Tony Keane
The enormous contribution made by the Sisters of Mercy to the Rathangan community was honoured at a special reception at Rathangan Credit Union last Saturday, August 12.
Sr Rosarii and Sr Bernadette will be leaving the town at the end of August, ending a 142-year historic relationship between the order and the area. The order wants to sell the convent and the two remaining local sisters are being relocated to Dublin.
Rathangan Credit Union Chairperson, Brenda Kennedy described the two nuns as “two very special friends, two very special people.”
She said the nuns had made a huge contribution to the local community in a spiritual, educational and welfare sense.
“The lives of the people of Rathangan have definitely been enriched by them and we are all saddened by their departure,” she said.
However, she said everyone wished them every happiness in their new ventures.
George Hipwell spoke of the impact made by the order over the years, mentioning Sr Margaret, Sr Concepta, Mother Patrick and Sr Frances. He highlighted the work carried out by Sr Rosarii, and praised Sr Bernadette for her contribution to the Credit Union as part of the oversight committee. Sr. Assumpta was also singled out for her contribution to the local financial institution over the years.
He said the nuns would leave a lasting legacy in the town.
Colm Ruffley said this was a very special occasion and he recalled his own education from the nuns and Sr Concepta.
He said the sisters were always working away behind the scenes helping those in need, well past retirement age, when most people retire.
“They are amazing people,” he said, “we have to follow them, continue in their footsteps and continue that on,” he said.
Bunscoil Bhride held a special mass to mark the departure of the Sisters of Mercy before the school holidays.
A Mass of Thanksgiving will also be held on August 26 at 6.30pm. The parish said the ministry, especially in the field of education, has left an invaluable legacy to Rathangan which will remain for a long time. After mass there will be light refreshments in the Community Centre.
Sr Rosarii and Sr Bernadette cut the cake at the special Rathangan Credit Union reception
George Hipwell, Rosie Martin, Sr Bernadette, Sr Rosarii, Grainne Forde and Fr Gerard O'Byrne
Mary Murphy, Deirdre Kelly, Claire Kenny and Pauline Conlan. Photos: Tony Keane
Triona Carroll, Deirdre Kavanagh.
Berna Marshall, Mary and Josie Martin.