During the summer I celebrated my Golden Jubilee as a priest in the Diocese of Limerick. I spent two days with my class mates in Maynooth in early June. There we exchanged stories of our experience over the seven years of formation in college and fifty years as priests in various Dioceses of the country. We were joined by a good number who started with us in September 1962 but left at different times to pursue a different vocation and were not ordained. We were delighted to hear their interesting stories and meet some of their wives.
Then a week later I jointed my family for a large gathering of extended family – all 56 of us – and we had a great party. A week later there was a Parish celebration organised by the Glin Pastoral Council. This was a wonderful celebration for me and many of my family who were invited and attended. We were amazed at the large congregation and level of detail in the liturgy of the Mass and also the wonderful food and entertainment we shared at Ceol Corbrai until last evening. On behalf of the Crawford Clan I thank you. We do appreciate your kindness.
I wish to thank you all for your good wishes, your cards of congratulations, your generous gifts and Prayers. It was a wonderful Parish event and a Day to Remember and cherish for life. A Big Thank You to all.
Then in July when I quietly reflected on my age I wrote to Bishop Brendan offering my resignation as Parish Priest of Glin Parish. All Parish Priests (and Bishops too) are requested to offer their resignation at the age of 75 (Canon Law no. 538). Then I waited for his reply. In the meatime I discussed with him my options and plans for the future. I conveyed my willingness to continue to minister and help out where needed. I was not ready however to leave the Parish and people of Glin where I have enjoyed your hospitality, friendship and support since I was appointed in August 2005.
In due course Bishop Brendan replied accepting my formal offer to resign but he asked me to continue for the time being and in view of our conversations he proposed that I continue as Co-PP in the Pastoral Unit for the year ahead.
So the position is clarified. I will continue to work with you and for you in the year ahead until next summer when he will review the team in this Pastoral Unit of Parishes, i.e. Glin, Loughill/Ballyhahill, Shanagolden/Foynes/Roberstown and Coolcappa/Kilcolman. Míle Buíochas. T. Crawford.