Sacramental Life

At the centre of our faith is the life and work of Jesus Christ.  We remember and celebrate his words and actions, his life, death and resurrection.  He is the Way that leads us to God. He is the Truth, revealing in the greatest way possible, our God, God the Father.  He is the Life, bringing us to share God’s own life.  He is the One, the Sign, the sacrament that enables us to be with God, to encounter God.  The Church enables this, it is the sign, the sacrament, to use that word again, that enables that encounter.

We use the word sacrament in a specific way as we talk and celebrate the Seven Sacraments.  These are the signs, the means that celebrate the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, what we call the Paschal or Easter Mystery.  There are the Sacraments of Initiation, how we are made Christian:  Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.  There are the Sacraments of Healing: Penance and Anointing of the Sick.  There are the Sacraments of Vocation: Marriage and Holy Orders.

Please click on the sections below to learn more.

Baptism

Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”            (Matt. 28:19)

Baptism is the ‘door’ to life and to the kingdom of God. It marks the beginning of the Christian’s journey of faith and his/her formal welcome into the Christian community. Through Baptism, the believer is made a member of Christ and of the Church, is freed from sin and is called to share in the Church’s mission to proclaim the Good News. Emersion into water symbolises dying with Christ and rising up as a “new creature”. The newly baptised is invited to participate in the Church’s liturgy and to bear witness to Christ by a holy life.
Information for Parents: The birth of your child is an occasion of great joy for a couple. Grateful for the gift of this new life to cherish, parents naturally wish to share the gift of their own faith with their child. Baptism is the first step on your child’s faith journey, as he/she is welcomed into the local Christian community and initiated into the life of faith. In requesting Baptism you are accepting responsibility to share your faith with your child through prayer at home and through bringing your child to participate in the regular, liturgical life of the faith community centred around the celebration of the Eucharist. Throughout the Baptismal liturgy, you will speak on your child’s behalf, promising to renounce sin, and practise faith according to the teachings of Christ. You will be supported by the Godparents, whom you have chosen to be an example and guide for your child, and by the parish, represented by members of the Baptism Team.

When choosing a Godparent certain guidelines should be followed:

  • A Godparent should be at least 16 years old.
  • A Godparent should be baptised, confirmed and have received their First Communion.
  • A Godparent should be someone who seeks to live a life of faith and understands the role they are undertaking.
  • Although only one Godparent is required, traditionally parents choose a Godmother and a Godfather. (Note, the names of only one godfather and one godmother is recorded).

Baptism Preparation Meeting:
The parish of St Columba, Iona Road has a meeting to, discuss the significance of baptism, the baptismal rite, the role of parents and godparents, the symbols of baptism, and the various stages of the baptismal ceremony.
Steps for having your child baptised in St Columba’s Church, Iona Road
1. Register your baptism with the Parish Office. When you register you will be given a date and time for the next preparation meeting. The Parish Office will also give you information regarding the forms needed for baptism and can provide you with the baptism form.
2. Complete the baptism form and return it to the Parish Office, along with a copy of your child’s birth certificate, before the baptism. If you are resident in a different parish and would like your child to be baptised in Iona Road church, you will also need a letter of release from your parish of residence.
3. Attend the Preparation Meeting, usually held (ten days prior to the baptism). You will receive an invitation from the parish
4. You will be asked to supply a white baptismal garment (blanket or shawl) and a Baptismal candle
5. The Baptism Ceremony is held on the Third Sunday of the month during the 11:00am Mass. (with the exception of the Lenten period) Following the baptism your child’s name will be entered into the baptismal register. Your child can then receive a baptismal certificate at any future date.
6. A donation of approx. €50 is welcome. This can be handed on the day to a member of the Baptism Team.
7. We discourage the taking of photographs during the ceremony, but families are welcome to take as many photos as they wish around the altar or baptismal font after the ceremony.

More information:
If you would like more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us by phone during parish office hours (Tel. 01 830 8257) or e-mail (saintcolumba@eircom.net)     Baptisms normally take place on the third Sunday of the month during the 11:00am Mass.

Eucharist

According to the documents of the Second Vatican Council, the Eucharist is the ‘source and summit of the Christian life’. The Sunday gathering to celebrate Eucharist is the defining action for Catholics. It is here we pray, listen to the Word of God together, are nourished at the table of the Eucharist and are sent forth to witness to the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our daily life. It is at our weekly Mass that we encourage and challenge one another to deepen our Christian faith and our commitment to our fellow human beings, particularly those who are in any kind of need.

Ministers of the Eucharist assist the celebrant of the Mass with the distribution of Holy Communion. They usually come forward from the congregation at the ‘Our Father’ and stand on either side of the altar to receive the Eucharist. We are always looking for new ministers of the Eucharist. If you would be interested in assisting with this ministry, you are invited to make contact with the parish secretary through the parish office (Tel. ) 01/8308257)or by email (sainttcolumba@eircom.net)

People who are coeliac can receive the Eucharist from low gluten hosts. They should come to the altar and request a low gluten host from the priest. Children, who have not yet made their First Communion, or adults, who for whatever reason do not feel ready to receive Communion, are nevertheless invited to come forward to receive a blessing from the celebrant or minister of the Eucharist. They don’t need to say anything but simply approach the minister with their arms folded across their breast.

Children usually celebrate their First Communion at the age of eight and traditionally have done so as part of the Primary school programme in second class. However the emphasis today is increasingly on parents making a request of the parish for their child to receive the sacrament as part of their journey of faith. The Do This in Memory programme in Iona Road Parish is centred on the children from the parish schools who celebrate the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Communion each year. The programme involves the schools, the church and the parents working together during the year, guiding and supporting the children along the path to these two very special sacraments. The children are from the following schools: St. Columba’s, St. Vincent’s and Lindsay Rd School.  Central to the programme is the participation of the children and their parents in a monthly Do This in Memory Mass at 6.00pm on Saturday from September to June. These occasions assist the children’s understanding of the Mass and enable parents to renew their own faith and appreciation of the centrality of the Eucharist in the Christian life.

If you know of a parishioner, who is housebound or ill, either temporarily or on a more long term basis, please let the parish know. A minister of the Eucharist can arrange to bring Communion to that person at their home after 11.00am Mass on Sunday.

Reconciliation or Penance

One of the very first gifts of the Risen Christ to his apostles was the authority to forgive sins in his name: ‘for those whose sins you forgive, they are forgiven…’ (John 21:) This is an enormous gift to the Church for both priest and penitent. We all need to be reconciled from time to time with God, with other people and with ourselves. The Sacrament of Reconciliation offers us a unique experience of God’s compassion and healing love. We should never be afraid to seek the grace of this Sacrament, even if it is a long time since we last availed of it. God is always waiting to offer us the grace of a new beginning. The Sacrament of Reconciliation is available in our church each Saturday prior to the 6.00pm Vigil Mass, or by appointment with one of the priests. Communal celebrations of Reconciliation for parishioners of the Glasnevin Grouping are held in Advent and Holy Week. Children celebrate the Sacrament of First Reconciliation as part of their preparation for First Communion.

Confirmation

Along with Baptism and Eucharist, Confirmation is one of the three sacraments through which someone becomes a full member of the Catholic Church. Where someone has been baptised as an infant or young child, the Sacraments of First Reconciliation (Confession), First Eucharist and Confirmation have traditionally been tied to the religion programme in the local Catholic primary school. However, increasingly the emphasis is on parents making a request of the parish for their child to receive these sacraments, and the parish runs a programme of preparation which dovetails with the preparation being done in the school. Parents whose child attends a non-Catholic school, should arrange for a teacher/catechist after normal school hours to teach a sacramental preparation class.. Parents of children wishing to receive the sacrament of Confirmation should present the class teacher, or the parish, with a copy of the child’s baptismal certificate early in the school year.

From autumn 2020 the parish will run the You Shall Be My Witnesses programme of preparation for Confirmation. Parents will be invited to an introductory meeting in late September, and invited to participate as parent leaders in the programme, which is run in January/February. Parents and children are invited to a Ceremony of Enrolment at the church in early Advent, where they make a commitment to prepare for the Sacrament of Confirmation. Whereas it is the parents’ decision for their child to receive the Sacraments of First Reconciliation and First Eucharist, children are invited to regard Confirmation as their opportunity to commit themselves to becoming a full member of the Church and to take more responsibility for their own faith development through prayer and regular Mass attendance. Of course they can only do this with the active support of their parents.

RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults)

Adults wishing to receive the sacrament of Confirmation or who wish to become a member of the Church through Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist should contact the parish secretary via the parish office (Tel. 01 8308257) or email (saintcolumba@eircom.net).  The R.C.I.A. programme is designed to support adults in preparing for the Sacraments of Christian Initiation.

Marriage

Firstly, we share in the joy of your engagement and your decision to celebrate the Sacrament of Marriage. We pray that the sacrament may prove to be a lifelong blessing for you both, as you ask God to accompany and guide you in your vocation as a married couple.

The first thing we invite you to do is to make contact with Fr. Paddy Jones, to discuss your wedding plans. Three months is the minimum notice required, but we strongly advise making contact at the earliest opportunity, so that you give yourselves plenty of time to make all the necessary arrangements.

Contact the church where you wish to celebrate your wedding and make a provisional booking. Enquire what their regulations/expectations are.

Book a Pre-Marriage course. ACCORD, the Catholic Marriage and Counselling Service, offer a range of courses, weekends and mid-week. A course can be booked directly online at www.accord.ie. The earlier you book and participate in a pre-marriage course the better; it is never too soon and it is not a good idea to leave it too close to the wedding date.

Ask the priest of the parish, where you are currently resident, to fill out a Pre-Nuptial Enquiry Form with you. To assist him with this, you should provide him with a copy of your Baptismal certificate (issued not more than 6 months prior to the date of the wedding), a copy of your Confirmation certificate and evidence of your freedom to marry. The priest can guide you on this.

Arrange to meet with the priest, who has agreed to officiate at your wedding, at the earliest opportunity in order to begin planning the marriage ceremony. To assist you in selecting the particular marriage rite, readings, prayers and music etc, you will find resources on the ACCORD website or on www.gettingmarried.ie.

If you are planning to celebrate your marriage in Iona Road Church contact the parish secretary (Tel. 01 8308257 or email: saintcolumba@eircom.net) who will advise you on what resources are available within the parish, as well as regulations, with regard to both music and floral decoration. It is customary to make an offering in advance to the church of €300 and €50 to the sacristan. A separate offering is usually given on the day to the celebrant of the marriage ceremony.

Civil Requirements

Make an appointment to meet in person the Civil Registrar not more than 3 months prior to the wedding to give notice of intention to marry. In Dublin the Office of the Registrar of Births, Marriages and Deaths is at Lombard St, Dublin 2. You will be required to supply the registrar with details concerning the date and venue of the wedding, the names and addresses of your two witnesses and the name of the priest (solemniser), who has agreed to officiate at your wedding. The couple will also be required to give a verbal declaration that there is no civil impediment to their marriage. They will be required to give this verbal declaration again in front of the priest/solemniser and their two designated witnesses not more than two days before the date of the wedding. In practice, this declaration is often given at the wedding rehearsal.

The Civil Registrar will present you with a Marriage Registration Form (MRF). You should show this form to the priest/solemniser, so he can verify the details, and bring it to the church on the day of the wedding, as this is the civil document that the couple sign, together with their witnesses, at the conclusion of the marriage ceremony. It is the responsibility of the couple to retrieve the MRF immediately after the ceremony and to return it to the Office of the Civil Registrar within a month. For further details see www.groireland.ie

Holy Orders

Any male parishioner, who is interested in considering the possibility of a vocation to priesthood, religious life or to the permanent diaconate, is welcome to contact any of the priests in the grouping of parishes or to contact directly Very Rev. Enda Cunningham, the Diocesan Vocations Director, at Tel. 0871380695 or email: vocations@dublindiocese.ie

Any female parishioner, who is interested in exploring the possibility of a vocation to religious life, is welcome to talk with a representative from one of the female religious congregations, for example: The Monastery of St. Alphonsus, St. Alphonsus Rd. Upper, Dublin 9. (www.rednuns.com)

Sacrament of the Sick

If a parishioner is in hospital, a priest or representative of the parish is available to visit. A priest can also visit the parishioner at home to bring them the Sacrament of Anointing with blessed oil. Once or twice a year there is a celebration of Mass with Anointing of the Sick in Our Lady of Dolour’s, to which all parishioners are invited, and the anointing with oil really brings the sick person an experience of Christ.