First Easter in Cork for many Ukranian refugees

Easter is the greatest feast in the liturgical year and very important to all Christians. On Saturday evening, April 23rd, the Easter Mass was said for the Ukrainians who celebrate their Easter a week behind us this year.

Over 100 people, including war refugees but also those who have been already living in Ireland for several years, gathered in St. Augustine’s Church in Cork to take part in the Easter Mass. Mass was said in Russian, Polish and English. Bishop Fintan Gavin also attended the ceremony. He prayed with and prayed for the Ukrainians at this really hard time.

Bishop Fintan blesses the food for the Easter table at the Easter Mass with Ukrainian people at St. Augustine’s Church, Cork

The Bishop addressed the congregation at the end of Mass and he assured the Ukrainians of his prayers and continued support as they are now part of our diocese as well. He invited them to attend Masses in the churches of the diocese and he told the children that they are more than welcome to our catholic schools in Cork and Ross.

The important, very traditional and significant part of the ceremony was the Blessing of Food for the Easter table. Bishop Fintan said the prayer and then sprinkled the Ukrainians and their baskets of food with holy water.

Thanks to Fr. Kamil Bachara, a curate in Ballincollig parish and the coordinator of the Polish Chaplaincy in the diocese who celebrated the Mass. A huge ‘Thank you’ to the members of the Polish community who provided the liturgical music, served at the altar and took photos. Words of thanks to Svetlana who translated Bishop Fintan’s address directly into the Ukrainian language. ‘Thank you’ to Fr. John Lyng and the Augustinians for their openness and constant help.

May the risen Lord bring all of us peace, love and hope for a better future without any war.

Bishop Fintan speaking at the Easter Mass with Ukrainian people at St. Augustine’s Church, Cork