Laity should be consulted on Mass changes

Dear Editor, Since retiring to this beautiful area of Kerry seven years ago, I have year upon year witnessed significant organisational Church decline which has included a reduction in the number of priests and a consequent 25% reduction in Sunday Masses.  

Our parish is reputed to be the largest geographical parish in the country and recently its most isolated community has seen its Sunday Vigil Mass replaced by a Thursday Mass.

When the greatly overworked clergy of our pastoral area announced their latest Mass cuts and new Mass times a few months ago, there was a wave of complaints voiced on local radio.  Once again ordinary parishioners, with the possible exception of anonymous members of parish and area councils, seemed voiceless except through the secular media.  

Surely it is appropriate that all interested parishioners – the People of God – be consulted on possible significant changes to liturgical arrangements that impact upon their worship life, including any questions regarding the substitution of daily Mass by Bible services and/or what you describe as “priestless Communion services” (IC 11/12/2014).

Yours etc.,

Alan Whelan,

Beaufort, Co. Kerry.