Friday, 24 August 2012

REJOICE! REJOICE! REJOICE!



We have just received the following GLORIOUS news from the Institute of Christ the King in Ireland:

"Sacred Heart Church purchased by the Institute of Christ the King in Limerick, Ireland

With the help of numerous friends from Ireland, the United States and Continental Europe, the Church of the Sacred Heart at the Crescent in Limerick, also known as the Jesuit Church after its first builders and long-term occupants, was recently purchased by a young priestly community called the Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest. The church and adjacent building, sold to a developer some years ago, had stood vacant for six years and was in danger of falling into ruin. Therefore many people from Limerick and other parts of Ireland were happy to help this Institute bring the Church of the Sacred Heart and its residence back to life.

A young community of members of the Institute of Christ the King will very soon move into the attached residence in spite of its rather poor condition, and the church will serve for the time being as its chapel. With the permission of the Bishop of Limerick, the Institute of Christ the King has had a residence in the diocese since 2009 and offers Mass every Sunday in the Extraordinary Form at St. Patrick's Church, whilst also working in a few neighbouring dioceses.

Founded in 1990, the Institute is a Roman-Catholic Society of Apostolic Life of Pontifical Right in canonical form. The 64 priests of the Institute work all over the world to promote the spiritual Kingship of Christ. A special emphasis is laid on the harmony between faith and culture, and thus the young community has acquired a reputation for promoting the arts, especially sacred music and architecture. This experience will serve to restore the Church of the Sacred Heart to its classical beauty and make it available once more as a point of reference for the cultural life of Limerick.

The mother-house and international seminary of the Institute of Christ the King is based in Florence, Italy, where 80 seminarians are training for the priesthood and 21 religious sisters are especially devoted to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Among these are already several Irish vocations. This young community has missions in Gabon (Africa) and important apostolates in the United States, England, France, Spain, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and Sweden and naturally in Rome, where their founder, Msgr. Gilles Wach, was ordained to the priesthood by Blessed Pope John Paul. The provincial superior of the community in Ireland is at present Msgr. Michael Schmitz, who was ordained a priest by the present Holy Father, the then Cardinal Ratzinger.

The prior of the Church of the Sacred Heart is a 38 year-old priest, Canon Wulfran Lebocq, choir-master of the Institute and permanently resident in the diocese since 2010. For the time being, the community in Limerick is composed of four members, whose average age is 32.

The Institute of Christ the King follows the spirituality of St. Francis de Sales, which is expressed in the motto of the Institute: Live the truth in charity, and could be summarised in the famous quote of the Doctor of Charity: Cook the truth in charity until it tastes sweet. The Canons of the Institute of Christ the King have a vast experience in working with the young. Schools, youth camps, days of recollection, musical training and many other activities are among the benefits they are used to bringing to the places where they work.

In Limerick, the Institute of Christ the King, supported by many local residents and a large group of friends in Ireland and abroad, intends to restore the Church of the Sacred Heart to its original purpose as a vibrant spiritual and cultural centre and a beautiful place of worship through a dynamic and open community life as a spiritual family. However, this will require a careful historical restoration before the Church may be opened once again to the greater public.

The Institute of Christ the King celebrates the classical Roman Liturgy, the Latin Mass, in its Extraordinary Form according to the liturgical books promulgated by Blessed Pope John XXIII in 1962. This liturgy, promoted by Blessed John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI in various documents, attracts today an ever greater number of people, especially young adults, students and families. The Institute is accustomed to see a lively family of faithful in its churches and wishes to bring the uplifting beauty of sacrality and genuine culture to all.

This beautiful church at the Crescent is still today a special architectural jewel, and many deplored its closing and long-term vacancy. The Institute of Christ the King, which has a special devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, truly desires to reopen this church for the benefit of all, in close collaboration with the local civil and ecclesiastical authorities. In this way, yet another sign of a brighter future will again come alive in Limerick.

Those who would like to know more about this important project for Limerick City can find further information either on their website (www.institute-christ-king.ie) or by visiting the community at the Crescent: Come and see!"

Ireland owes a great debt to the Institute of Christ the King for rescuing this Church from secular use (see here and here).  A history of the Church can be found here and some images of the Church can be found here.

We say: REJOICE! REJOICE! REJOICE!

36 comments:

Just a Girl said...

This is excellent news and the generosity of everyone who enabled this to happen is to be applauded. I was lucky enough to be able to meet some of the community at last week's Mass in Emo and hear them talk about this exciting project. I look forward to being able to visit them in their new location, it is wonderful to see such communities growing.

Sancrucensis said...

Congratulations Ireland!

Kitchener Waterloo Traditional Catholic said...

Congratulations. Restoring the Church won't be quick or easy, but every action pleases God - brick by brick. May God bless your efforts.

Quis ut Deus said...

O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay! He chortled in his joy!

Seriously tho, good job Ireland. Limerick isn't my part of the auld sod but I know the Institute Men here in the US and the Treaty City is getting quality Priests.

Fitzy said...

Good stuff! Guess there will be a motorway worn down to Limerick now.

Random Thinker said...

The Christ the King Priests are lovely. I was at the Mass in the Cathedral in Carlow Town a few months ago and I got to kneel for the blessing of a new Priest and kiss his hands. I haven't had that experience of a Priest's first blessing in maybe 10 years. It was a really spiritual occasion. The sermon was wonderful. Very honest and devout. You could see the heavens rejoicing as he spoke. It was something other worldly about it. You know you were in the presence of a holy Priest. I'm so glad that they are getting a permanent home. I'm sad it's so far away but at least they have a first home in Ireland. That is great news. I rejoice with you all.

JTS said...

This is fantastic. The Institute works hard and works well. They remind me of the old missionaries travelling hundreds of miles in a day to serve God and to serve the people. They are reaping the rewards of their generosity. I only met them three times but each time it was a pleasure. Thanks be to God for blessing Limerick and Ireland.

Jim'll Fix It! said...

This is a real fruit of Pope Benedict's Motu Proprio. Many vocations will come from it.

Donnelly's Hollow said...

The blessings of God on these holy priests. I wish they were in Kildare.

Virgo Potens said...

This is part of what the Apostolic Nuncio spoke of as the revival of the Faith in Ireland. We have a young Nuncio and young Priests of this community. The reEvangelization of Ireland has begun. Deo Gratias.

Deise Girl said...

Great stuff! That's really near me! So excited!

Alyssa said...

Praise be to God above!

Joyce F.

c.henri said...

La présence de l'Institut du Christ-Roi est une présence de Dieu lui-même. Vraiment Irlande devrait se réjouir de ces nouvelles béni.

Anonymous said...

Thanks to St. Conleth's for letting me know. I want to support these Priests any way I can. I will pray hard that they get many vocations and spread across Ireland.

Sapientior said...

The Sisters Adorers already have an Irish vocation. It cannot be too long before the excellent Priests of Gricigliano produce a new stream of Irish Priests to conquer the world for Christ the King. Their Salesian spirituality is the key to their success. Too many traditional priests are jansenist in their outlook and their manner towards the people. These men come to the people to give the truth in charity and to present Christ in all His sweetness. Providence has chosen them to replace the Jesuits here and to be what the Jesuits have ceased to be. Sons of St. Francis de Sales, arise and conquer in love!

Simone said...

I pray that the influence of these Priests will be felt across Ireland. We need this influence and more influences like them if we are going to turn back to God.

albericus said...

Great blessings will flow from this.

Shandon Belle said...

Really cool! Great to see them getting their own church. They come to Cork every year and they steal the show.

JPII said...

Congratulations to all concerned. After the Dome of Home another triumph for this thriving traditional congregation.

Veronica's Closet said...

I look forward to many such announcements in the future. This is the dawning of a new era.

An ICKSP fan said...

Best news this decade so far!

A Prosperous Man said...

I'm just reading the intro there and they seem2be sound. Wish them luck there in Limerick. I just checked the maps and its more central than I thought. Could definitely b a winner. Go with God!

Anonymous said...

This is like St. Francis of Assisi. Francis, rebuild my Church. Institute, restore my Church. Another thought is my house is a house of prayer but they tried to make it a den of nightclubbers... and failed, T.G.

Anthony Keoghan (Wicklow) said...

A really beautiful church and an interesting classical facade contrasting the red brick of the typical georgian terrace with some stone facing. I hope it is in the same condition today as the pictures show.

Anthony Keoghan (Wicklow) said...

Its going to be interesting to see how much of the Jesuit iconography is retained by the Institute. The SJs abandoned the place with its interior almost intact. I bet St. Ignatius never planned to look down on a bar or a spa. Where does he stand on the ICRSS? Where do they stand on him?

Anonymous said...

Great news. Thank you for the news.

Olivia (Dublin) said...

God has blessed this wonderful company of Priests and He has heard the prayers of His faithful children in Ireland. I agree with all the sentiments above. This will be a great opportunity for conversion in Ireland but it is also the beginning (founded upon much work already) of an outpouring of grace that I feel sure will engulf our Island. I pray that many vocations will follow. Praise God!

am said...

How grateful I am to hear this news! Thank you, dear Lord! I will continue to donate to the ICRSS seminarian fund so the Institute will be able to serve ever more the Church around the world -- may God bless their work!!

Ronni Lane said...

I can't begin to say how surprised I am at this news. JPII (loved you in 'the Vatican') mentioned the Dome of Home, which has only recently been restored by this Institute. I see this as another sign of the Benedictine Renaissance, 'brick by brick' as Fr. Z says.

With the Ordinariates, the Summorum Pontificum Institutes and their newly established right of full citzenship in the Church is the Holy Father's most significant act. I want to do whatever I can to support this wonderful Institute. May Christ the Lord take his sons into very safekeeping and see them fruitful in their ministry and blessed in their lives.

Jessie said...

I cant believe that the Jesuit Fathers were leaving this Church. Sad days for Ireland. Great that the Sacred heart of Jesus sent these holy Priests to take over.

Anonymous said...

Good news, T.G.

Zara Folch said...

At one level this Church building was quite plain, austere even for a classical building. I have heard of the architectural projects of this organisation before. I think someone mentioned the church near Liverpool known as the Dome of Home but better examples are to be found in the US. A brief review of the galleries on their websites shows that they have a very rich aesthetic sense. I look forward to seeing how the two interplay in Ireland.

VCrowe said...

I saw this news in the Irish Independent today. The contrast couldn't have been clearer. Top half of the page was Canon Wulfran Lebocq taking down the FOR SALE sign. The botton half of the page was about a parish in Carlow where they have women leading a service that is Mass without the consecration. We need more Canons to rescue the Church in Ireland not just one Church.

Servant of the Infant King said...

I rejoice with you all!

Servant of the Infant King said...

The Institute of Christ the King Sovereign Priest has a wealth of spiritual riches to share with the people of Ireland, as they have shared them with so many people across the world. They already share two characteristics of the ancient Irish Christian civilization. They are great missionaries in Africa. They have a sister community of nuns that sets them apart from most other traditional groups. I believe that Ireland will benefit from their presence and the great spiritual heritage of Ireland will enrich their apostolate. Praised be Jesus Christ our King!

Little Al said...

Take it from me, this is historic. This is going to be BIG!