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On Friday 26th May a special gathering took place in Newcastle West, Co. Limerick, to thank Sisters Marie and Rena for 14 years of dedicated service to the Desmond Resource Complex in Newcastle West.

Bishop Leahy was the chief celebrant at Mass and he was joined by Frs. Frank O’Dea, Canon Frank Duhig, Fr. Joe Cussen and Fr. John Mockler. Sr. Phyllis Moynihan, Vicar for Religious and their Superior, Sr. Kathleen Coleman were in attendance. Following the liturgy a reception was held in the Longcourt Hotel where the Sisters were joined by parishioners and the staff from the Desmond complex.

Srs. Marie and Rena are members of the Congregation of the Poor Servants of the Mother of God. The history of their Congregation goes back to the dark days of the 19th century, in the overcrowded streets and alleyways of the London. It was there that their Foundress, Frances Taylor (Mother Magdalen) gathered together a small group of like-minded women around her. These women had worked with her, prayed with her and shared her experiences in reaching out to the neediest, the most vulnerable and the most frightened people who thronged the vast metropolis of that time. From that great identified need, the Congregation was founded in 1872.

The dream of their Foundress was that:

  • Her sisters would be Christ-bearers, carrying His light, His love, His compassion and His healing to all.
  • She wished her Sisters to reach out to the most vulnerable – to be servants of the most vulnerable.

The motto of the Poor Servants of the Mother of God is, ‘Let Me Be Your Servant, Lord.’

For the past fourteen years Srs. Marie and Rena lived up to their motto in their ministry at the Desmond Resource Complex and in their day to day lives in Newcastle West where they worked with their colleagues in providing a wide range of services to the people in the West Limerick area.

Sr Phyllis thanked the Marie and Rena for their presence in the diocese and for their witness to gospel values. She wished them blessing upon blessing for the next chapter of their lives. They were also thanked by the Management of the Desmond Complex.