On Sunday 1st September, nearly 80 pilgrims set off from the St. Laurence Pastoral Area on pilgrimage to Ardmore to mark the Year of Faith. Pilgrims from the Cathedral of the Most Holy Trinity, St. John’s, Sacred Heart, Ss Joseph, Benildus and Mary, Killea, Crooke and Faithlegg, set off on a beautiful sunny September Sunday.
Our first stop of the day was at the ruined Cathedral of Ardmore, where Fr. Donal O’Connor gave a most inspiring talk on the life of St. Declan, and how the Faith has been passed on to us through difficult times in our Irish history. He opened the treasures of the Cathedral in a most enlightening way. He drew attention to the different sculptures, and highlighted not only the magnificent workmanship, but also how these sculptures were an important instrument of faith sharing.
We were then afforded some time to visit the Round tower and St Declan’s burial site. We then had the opportunity to visit and pray at the Holy Well. Members of our group recounted their own personal faith stories of children and adults coming to bless themselves at the well. A number of pilgrims took this opportunity to take the cliff walk and enjoyed it immensely on such a sunny day.
We then gathered for prayer in the Parish Church, and concluded this with a very uplifting rendition of Faith of Our Fathers, sung by all in the group. Our evening concluded contentedly with a meal in Dungarvan, and wonderings about another pilgrimage.