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MESSAGES OF HOPE Video Series

20/04/2020 – Today, we start a series called “Messages of Hope” at this time of the coronavirus. We invited a number of people involved in or connected to the L.E.A.F. Project to share a word of encouragement.

Brian Gebreurs – Senior manager with BP – past pupil of Scoil Iosaef Naofa and Colaiste Muire, Cobh ( Added 18.06.2020 )

Our message today is from Brian Gebreurs. Brian is a senior manager with BP, one of the world’s largest multi-national oil and gas companies, with headquarters in London. He is a past pupil of Scoil Iosaef Naofa and Colaiste Muire, Cobh. I ( Br. Martin Kenneally ) taught Brian in Cobh 40 years ago and we have stayed in touch over the years. In the interests of full disclosure, I should add that I was 22 at the time and just starting teaching!! 😁😁.

In this excellent message, Brian shares about how lockdown affected his family and work life, along with the learnings from that experience. He speaks of his own faith journey over the years and the meaning he and his family get from faith and their involvement in the Church now. I recall Brian writing to me many years ago from an oil rig in Indonesia, where he was re-discovering a deeper faith and reading the Confessions of St.Augustine!! A good place to start on a deeper faith journey!

Thanks Brian for sharing such a wonderful message. As we gradually and hopefully emerge from lockdown, it really is important to reflect on the lessons of this time!

Message put together by Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork – farewell to this year’s Leaving Cert class ( Added 09.06.2020 )

Here in Ireland, this is the time of year when, in normal times, students would be sitting their Leaving Certificate exams. These would be preceded by Graduation Ceremonies and Masses. This year, because of the pandemic, schools have had to make different arrangements and a lot of events are taking place online.

Here attached is a beautiful message put together by Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork, as a farewell to this year’s Leaving Cert class. CCRi is a Catholic school in the Presentation tradition, rooted in Irish culture. It is my alma mater and I am very honoured to serve on the Board of Management of the school. In recent times the strong Criost Ri tradition has been enriched by the presence of students from many different countries and cultures. Over 30 different nationalities are represented in the school. In a world where we are witnessing so much injustice, racism and violence, Criost Ri stands as a beacon of hope and light. Enjoy the message. Ar aghaidh Criost Ri!

Thanks to Padraig Mac An Ri, Principal for permission to share. Comhghairdeas to Daithi O hAodha, Deputy Principal,who created the message.

Br. Bede Minehane – Community Leader Pres Brothers Community, Turners Cross, Cork: ( Added 28.05.2020 )

Today our Message of Hope comes from Br. Bede Minehane. Br. Bede is Community Leader of the Presentation Brothers Community, Maiville, Turners Cross, Cork.

Maiville is the largest community in the Congregation and is home to many of our senior Brothers.

At the beginning of the pandemic, the Maiville Community, on the advice of our excellent Health Care Co-ordinators, implemented all appropriate safety and lockdown protocols, even ahead of government advice. All the Community are doing well, thank God.

Congrats to Br. Bede, the Brothers and Staff in Maiville, on adhering to a clear plan and on your positive and proactive leadership through this crisis.

Maiville is a great centre of prayer and hospitality in our Congregation. This prayer continues and we hope in the not too distant future that restrictions may be be safely lifted allowing a return to a more normal life.

Thanks to Br. Bede for sharing the Maiville experience, for such positive witness and for such a faith-filled and hope-filled message at this time! Beannacht De orainn go leir!

Aghna Fallon – Staff member Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Cork City: ( Added 27.05.2020 )

Aghna Fallon is a Staff member at Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Cork City.

Aghna teachs English and Religion.

Thanks Aghna for sharing your Messages of Hope with us at this time.

And thanks to Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh for all your support and collaboration with the L.E.A.F Project.

Dylan O Toole – A 5th Year Student, Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Cork City: ( Added 27.05.2020 )

Dylan O’Toole is a 5th Year Student at Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Cork City.

Thanks Dylan for sharing your Messages of Hope with us at this time.

And thanks to Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh for all your support and collaboration with the L.E.A.F Project.

Fr. Alan Neville – A Priest with the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart: ( Added 27.05.2020 )

Fr. Alan Neville is a priest with the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart.

He is a past pupil of PBC Cork and he is Vocation Director for his Congregation.

Here he speaks about his experience as a priest since the pandemic began.

Thanks Alan for sharing your reflection with us.

Prof. Patrick O’Shea – President of University College Cork: ( Added 19.05.2020 )

Prof. Patrick O’Shea is now in his fourth year as President of University College Cork.

He is a past student of Colaiste Chriost Ri. Professor O’Shea had a brilliant career in science and academia in the United States, where he was Vice President and Chief Research Officer at the University of Maryland. He returned to Cork in 2017 to lead the community of UCC and has given great leadership to the university and in our city. He was a keynote speaker at the launch of our L.E.A.F. Project.

We, in the Presentation Family, are very proud of President O’Shea as a past student of CCRi. We want to thank him for his support and for taking the time to send us this special message at such a critical time.

David O’Riordan – Past pupil of PBC Cork and member of staff: ( Added 19.05.2020 )

David O’Riordan is a past pupil of PBC Cork and now a member of staff there.

Here, David shares his message of hope in word and song.

Thanks David for sharing!

Best wishes to all teachers and other staff members in schools who have managed to keep teaching/learning and other school services going so well at this time.

Tadgh Connery – Psychology Student in UCC, Cork City: ( Added 19.05.2020 )

Tadgh Connery is a Psychology Student in UCC. He is a past student of Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown.

Here he speaks of his experience of the Cork & Ross Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes. He also compares the journey through this time of pandemic as like a pilgrimage. Tadgh says that faith can help us meet the challenge of these times.

Thanks Tadgh for your message reminding us of the power of faith. We are all pilgrims in this together!

Tony Crockett – A past student of Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork City: ( Added 15.05.2020 )

Tony Crockett is a past student of Colaiste Chriost Ri. He is a Sergeant in An Garda Siochana, based in Cahirciveen, Co. Kerry, though most of his service has been in Cork City.

Tony has helped the L.E.A.F. Project from the beginning and had been a member of the Steering Committee.

Here he shares his own experience and also gives his professional perspective on living through the current crisis.

Thanks, Tony for your support and availability at all times and for all the work you and your Garda colleagues are doing in serving the community, especially at this time of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Art Kelleher – Doctor working in Mercy University Hospital, Cork City: ( Added 12.05.2020 )

Art Kelleher is a doctor working at Mercy University Hospital, Cork. He is a past student of P.B.C., where he was involved in PRESLINK and Share. He is on the Steering Committee of the L.E.A.F. Project.

Thanks, Art for sending us this message.

We take this opportunity to thank all doctors, nurses, frontline, and essential workers for their generous service during the time of the Coronavirus Pandemic.

May God bless you and all your efforts to overcome Covid 19 and bring healing and hope to people.

Br. Solomon Kuuso-Yir – Ghanaian Presentation Brother working in Nigeria: ( Added 12.05.2020 )

Br. Solomon Kuuso-Yir, a Ghanaian Presentation Brother working in Nigeria gives us an update from there.

Special thanks to Solomon for sharing his message of hope at this time.

Br. Ray Dwyer – Province Leader, Anglo-Irish Province, Cork City: ( Added 12.05.2020 )

Br. Ray Dwyer, Province Leader, Anglo-Irish Province, shares his experience of leading the Province through this time of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Special thanks to Ray for sharing his message of hope at this time.

Br. James Debuo-Der – GHANA: ( Added 12.05.2020 )

Br. James Debuo-Der sends us updates and Messages of Hope from Ghana.

Thanks James for sharing!

Br. Alban Besigrinee – GHANA: ( Added 12.05.2020 )

Br. Alban Besigrinee sends us updates and Messages of Hope from Ghana.

Thanks, Alban for sharing!

Padraig Mac An Ri – Principal of Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork City:
( Added 06.05.2020 )

Padraig Mac An Ri, Principal of Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork, outlines how the CCRi Community has responded during the challenge of the coronavirus.

Thanks Padraig for sharing this message with us.

Br. Barry Noel – Formation Director at the Presentation Brothers Community, Glasthule, Dublin:
( Added 06.05.2020 )

Br. Barry Noel, a member of the Congregation Leadership Team is Formation Director at the Presentation Brothers Community, Glasthule, Dublin.

Thanks Barry for sharing your message of hope with us for these times.

Peter Long – Past student of Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork City:
( Added 04.05.2020 )

Peter Long is a past student of Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork.

He is at present pursuing a B.A. in musical theatre at the renowned MGA Academy of Performing Arts in Edinburgh, where he is in the second year of his course. Peter recently starred in ‘Fiddler on the Roof’. He has represented MGA at various social and corporate events, including ‘Performe’, the largest performing arts festival in Ireland, held in Dublin last year.

Doing musical theatre has been Peter’s dream since early days in Criost Ri and he is living his dream at the moment.

He has sung at many Masses and Presentation Family events.

Home in Cork at the moment, here Peter sings a song – the Marian hymn, ‘Queen of the May’.

Thanks Peter for sharing your wonderful voice with us! Ri Abu!

Michael Murphy – Leaving-Cert student in P.B.C. Cork City:
( Added 05.05.2020 )

Michael Murphy is a Leaving-Cert student in P.B.C. Cork. He has been principal cellist of the National Youth Orchestra of Ireland and the Cork Youth Orchestra. In 2019, he won the Frank Maher Classical Music Award – the most prestigious classical music award in Ireland, created to showcase outstanding young talent. Michael has performed with the RTE National Symphony Orchestra the Irish Film and Pops Orchestra and the CIT CSM Symphony Orchestra. He has performed at major venues in Italy, the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.

Here he plays the hauntingly beautiful “Last mich allein” from Dvorak (Op.82 love songs). Michael says:

“After listening to Alisa Weilerstein’s Dvorak album, I decided to attempt my own cover of Lasst Mich Allein. Having seen many other musicians come up with innovative solutions to the lack of accompaniment, I wanted to experiment myself.” Thanks Michael for sharing your wonderful gift with us. We send our best wishes to you and all other Leaving-Cert students at this time.

So, enjoy! Music to uplift and inspire on this Feast of Blessed Edmund Rice!

Br. Bernard Gazire – Ghanaian Presentation Brother
based in Geneva: ( Added 04.05.2020 )

Br. Bernard Gazire, a Ghanaian Presentation Brother, based in Geneva

Br Bernard gives his perspective on the current crisis.

Br. Bernard works at the United Nations with an advocacy group for young people and educational rights called E.R.I. (Edmund Rice International).

Thanks Bernard for sending us your message.

Colm Keena – past student of P.B.C. Cork City:
( Added 04.05.2020 )

Colm Keena is a past student of P.B.C. Cork. During his time in school he was Chairman of S.H.A.R.E. and Head Boy of Presentation College.

Colm is now an officer in the Irish Air Corps, at present posted at the Flying Training School, where he currently serves as a flying instructor on the Pilatus PC-9M aircraft.
Colm was invested as an Officer of Merit in the Order of St.Lazarus for volunteer work in the training of emergency services in Malta to assist in humanitarian rescue missions in the Mediterranean Sea. He spoke at the L.E.A.F. Leadership Conference last year and is a member of the L.E.A.F. Steering Committee.

Here Colm shares how the Defence Forces in Ireland are assisting the civil authorities in the fight against Covid 19.

Thanks Colm for your Message and we appreciate all the efforts of you and your colleagues in the Defence Forces at this time. Beir bua!

Brenda Moriarty – Principal of Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown, Cork:

Brenda Moriarty is Principal of Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown, Cork.

Here she shares her experience of leading a secondary school community and the unprecedented challenges resulting from the Coronavirus pandemic.

She concludes with words of encouragement, solidarity and hope for the entire Presentation Family.
Thanks Brenda, as a very busy Principal for taking the time to share your Message with us!

Amy Coholan –  U.C.C. Student from Carrigaline, Co. Cork:
( Added 04.05.2020 )

Amy Coholan, a U.C.C. Student from Carrigaline.

Amy shares her experience of the last few weeks and draws some interesting lessons from it.

Amy’s message will resonate with a lot of students and young adults at this time.

Thanks Amy for sharing!

Michael Sexton, C.E.O. of P.B.S.T. (Presentation Brothers Schools Trust):

Prior to taking up his present post, Michael was Principal of Colaiste an Spioraid Naoimh, Bishopstown, Cork. He was a speaker at the L.E.A.F. Conference in Dublin last July.

Michael gives an insight into the situation of school communities in Ireland, during this time of the coronavirus pandemic.

L.E.A.F. takes the opportunity to send good wishes to all involved in Presentation Schools – leadership and management, teaching, ancillary and support staff, parents and especially our students. We are praying in a special way for our Leaving-Cert students. We also salute our past pupils on the frontline, health workers, Chaplains, Gardai, Defence Forces and many other essential workers. Your commitment and generosity are really appreciated.

Thanks to Michael for sharing this message with us. Blessings on the work of P.B.S.T.

Anthony Kenneally. Principal of Scoil Iosaef Naofa, Cobh:

Anthony Kenneally is Principal of Scoil Iosaef Naofa, Cobh. He is a past pupil of Scoil Chriost Ri and Colaiste Chriost Ri, Cork.

Anthony is a former director and Vice-Chair of P.B.S.T. (Presentation Brothers Schools Trust). Here Anthony shares the experience of leading a primary school community through the Coronavirus pandemic. School Principals are extremely busy particularly at the moment, so we thank Anthony for taking the time to share this Message of Hope with the Presentation Family.

Dr. Sean Crowley, a young Irish Doctor:

The SECOND MESSAGE is from Dr. Sean Crowley, a young Irish doctor, who has just returned from New Zealand to serve in Ireland during this time of the coronavirus.

Sean is a past student of PBC Cork. He and his family have been very involved in the L.E.A.F. Project.

Thanks Sean for your positive message. We pray for you and your colleagues and so many other young men and women who are serving generously at this time in the medical field and other essential services.

Sr. Maria Dunne, Holy Faith Sister:

Sr. Marie Dunne is a Holy Faith Sister. She was co-ordinator of music and liturgy at the L.E.A.F. Conference in Dublin last July. She has composed this beautiful song, “I light a candle for you each day”.

In the context of the coronavirus, Marie has dedicated the song to medical personnel on the frontline and all essential workers.

Thanks Marie for kindly agreeing to share it with us as part of our “Messages of Hope” Series. Music to inspire and lift the spirit….

Message from Brother Martin:

Bishop Fintan Gavin, Bishop of Cork & Ross:

This MESSAGE is from Bishop Fintan Gavin, Bishop of Cork and Ross. Bishop Fintan has been very supportive of the L.E.A.F. Project since his arrival in Cork as Bishop. Many of you will have met him at the “Welcome Event” we held in his honour at the Mardyke House Centre in January.

We are very grateful to Bishop Fintan for his friendship, support and his special message to our Presentation Family at this time.