Cork churches keep Christmas lights on as a sign of ‘the light of Christ in this hurting world’
A number of parishes in the United Dioceses of Cork, Cloyne and Ross that have outdoor decorations on their church buildings for Christmas have taken the decision this year to keep the lights on until Candlemas, 2nd February, the Feast of the Presentation of Christ in the Temple.
Last week, the decision was made in the coastal village of Crosshaven to keep the lights on and the local Church of Ireland church, Templebreedy, has joined in the initiative.
The brightly shining stars gracing the bell towers of St Mary’s Church in Carrigaline and St John’s Church in Monkstown are normally only in situ for a period of four weeks each year. These large stars, much beloved by local people, are erected on the bell towers on Advent Sunday each year and remain in place, lit 24 hours a day, until the Feast of the Epiphany (6th January).
This year, a decision was made by the Rector and Select Vestry of the Carrigaline Union of Parishes to keep the stars in place and shining brightly until after the feast of Candlemas (2nd February) as a reminder of the light of Christ in this hurting world.
On hearing of the initiative in Carrigaline and Monkstown, St Mary’s Church in Dunmanway has also extended the time when their stars are illuminated in the windows of the ringing room of the Sam Maguire Community Bells as a symbol of hope in these troubled times until the end of the Epiphany season (2nd February).