National Novena Speakers 2019
National Novena Speakers announced for 2019
As we celebrate the 140th anniversary of the Apparition at Knock, the theme of this year’s Novena is ‘Continuing Our Journey’. We are delighted to announce the schedule of speakers for this special anniversary year.
Theme: Faith, Future and Europe
3pm & 8 pm Novena
John Bruton is a former Irish Fine Gael politician who served as Taoiseach from 1994 to 1997. He was also the EU Ambassador to the United States and held various other Leadership and Ministerial roles throughout his career.
Theme: Mary in the life of the Church
3pm & 8 pm Novena
Archbishop Rino Fisichella, is the President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of the New Evangelisation. He has served as President of the Pontifical Academy for Life and as President of the International Council for Catechesis since 2013. Previously, he taught fundamental theology for 20 years at the Pontifical Gregorian University. He also served as an Auxiliary Bishop of Rome, Rector of the Pontifical Lateran University and in various curial positions.
Theme: Family and Faith
3pm & 8pm Novena
Olive Foley is the mother of two young boys and wife of the late Anthony Foley, the Munster Rugby coach who died suddenly in his sleep at the age of 42 in 2016. Olive is an ambassador for the Children’s Grief Centre in Limerick, which offers support services for children who have lost a loved one.
Theme: What Knock means to me
Bishop Alan Mc Guckian is a native of Cloughmills, Co. Antrim and has been Bishop of Raphoe since 2017. As a Jesuit priest, he worked in communications for many years. In recent years, Bishop Mc Guckian ran the Living Church Office in the Diocese of Down & Connor. A key element of the work of the Living Church has been the rolling out of Facilitative and Discerning Leadership training which aims to foster a culture of co-responsibility for the mission of the church between clergy and laity.
Theme: God in Creation – learning to read the other Book of Revelation
Dr. John Feehan is an Irish geologist, botanist, author and broadcaster. He was a Senior Lecturer in the School of Agriculture and Food Science at University College Dublin, where he taught for twenty years up to his retirement in 2012. In recent years he has devoted his attention more particularly to the interface between religion and science. His book on creation spirituality, The Singing Heart of the World won a Nautilus Book Award in 2013.
Sunday, 18th August: Family Day at Knock Shrine
A day to celebrate all things family throughout the grounds at Knock Shrine. Activities include drumming, kite design, face painting, games and much more! The day begins at 12 noon.
Theme: A joy that lies ahead of us
Bishop Kevin Doran has been Bishop of Elphin since July 2014. He is chairs the Council for Life, the Consultative Group on Bioethics and Life Questions and is a member of the Council for Justice and Peace and the Council for Doctrine and Theology of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference.
Theme: Mary and the reality of family life
Msgr. John Armitage is the Rector of the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham, known as ‘The Nazareth of England.’ Walsingham has been a place of pilgrimage for almost a thousand years since Richeldis de Faverches was inspired to build a Shrine in perpetual memorial of the Annunciation.
Theme: Motherhood, media and me
3pm & 8pm Novena
Carole Coleman is an experienced multimedia journalist. Carole is well known to Irish audiences as the former Washington correspondent and Education and Environment at RTÉ. She is currently a presenter and reporter on ‘This Week’ on RTÉ Radio One.
12pm : Seminar : New shoots
Knock Youth Ministry
The Youth Ministry Team at Knock Shrine run a vibrant faith centre for school retreats and summer youth programmes. Their aim is to give young people a positive experience of Knock and a powerful encounter with God. They do this by celebrating the Sacraments, spreading the Gospel message and giving witness to the loving presence of Jesus in our world.
Theme: Faith in Action
3pm & 8pm Novena
12pm : Seminar
Rev. Trevor Sargent is a Church of Ireland Minister and a former Irish Green Party politician who served as Minister of State for Food and Horticulture from 2007 to 2010 and Leader of the Green Party from 2001 to 2007. Trevor was ordained in 2018 and serves the parishes of the Waterford Union.
Wednesday, 21st August – 140th Anniversary of the Apparition
Special day of Celebration with Most Rev. Michael Neary, Archbishop of Tuam
Theme: The message of the Knock Apparition then and now
3pm & 8pm
On the 140th Anniversary of the Apparition at Knock, Archbishop Neary will be the main Celebrant at the ceremonies as we gather to celebrate this momentous occasion. We will remember in particular the local people of all ages who witnessed the heavenly vision on a wet August evening in 1879.
12pm Seminar: 19th Century Mayo – Place, people and the Knock Apparition.
Nollaig O Muraile & Tom Neary
Nollaig Ó Muraíle is an Irish scholar. He published an acclaimed edition of Dubhaltach Mac Fhirbhisigh’s Leabhar na nGenealach in 2004. He was admitted to the Royal Irish Academy in 2009. Tom Neary served as Head Steward of The Knock Shrine Society for many years and is the author of many books and publications on the Knock Apparition.
* Unveiling of the Knock Village Model will take place at the seminar at 12 pm
For the 140th anniversary of the Knock Apparition, Knock Museum unveils a unique and historic model of Knock Village as it was in 1879. The village recreation is filled with wonderful miniature details of the Old Church, the houses the Witnesses lived in, schools, people, animals, roads, pathways and farmland. It offers a fascinating insight into village life in Knock and into the historical and social context of the Knock Apparition
* The Unveiling of the New Processional Statue of Our Lady of Knock which has been carved by Stuflesser Ortesei in Italy will take place at 3pm Mass.
* ‘ Witnesses’ Walk – Meeting heaven at harvest time’ – celebration and commemoration of the Apparition witnesses takes place at 7 pm. Follow in the footsteps of each of the Apparition witnesses as they made their way to the gable of the Parish Church on that wet August evening back in 1879.
Theme: Following the dream of Jesus
3pm & 8pm Novena
Fr. Peter McVerry is the founder of Peter McVerry Trust, one of the country’s largest organisations responding to the issue of homelessness. In 2017 the charity worked with over 4,900 vulnerable youths. As a social activist, Peter is a strong advocate for those who have no voice in society. He has written widely on issues relating to young homeless people.