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Mayo Walk 2013: In the Footsteps of Irish Emigrants

Mayo Walk

Mayo Walk 2013: In the Footsteps of Irish Emigrants
You, or a representative, are invited to attend the Mayo Walk 2013 in aid of the Irish Chaplaincy in London.  Details:

Date                Saturday 17 August 2013

Time               10:30am prayer service and 11:00am start of pilgrimage

Venue             Trailhead, Mulranny behind the Mulranny Park Hotel for an 18km walk to Newport along the Great Western Greenway, the old emigrant train route.

Photographs  Michael Donnelly of ‘Mayo Pics’ can contacted for photographs – see below

Attending       Apostolic Nuncio to Ireland His Excellency Archbishop Charles Brown; Bishop John Kirby, Bishop of Clonfert and chairman of the Bishops’ Council for Emigrants; Mr Eugene Dugan, Director of the Irish Chaplaincy in Britain; Father Gerry McFlynn, Project Manager of the Irish Chaplaincy; and support staff from the Maynooth and London offices.

Background

The third annual Mayo Walk of the Irish Chaplaincy in Britain – “In the Footsteps of Irish Emigrants” – takes place tomorrow from Mulranny to Newport in Co Mayo via the beautiful Great Western Greenway.  Registration and participation in the walk are free.  Individual walkers are welcome to collect sponsorship so as to make a donation to support the work of the Irish Chaplaincy.  This year’s walk is taking place as part of the celebrations of the Year of Faith, National Heritage Week and The Gathering Ireland.  People are invited to come along and enjoy a fun day in the open air while experiencing the incredible beauty and heritage of the Great Western Greenway, Mulranny Trailhead, Co Mayo.  Bring sufficient water and footwear!

The Irish Chaplaincy in Britain
The Irish Chaplaincy in Britain is an organisation based in London which has worked with Irish emigrants since the 1950s.  While some of the issues facing Irish people in Britain have changed since the 1950s there remains a great demand for the services of the Chaplaincy.  As the number of Irish people leaving home increases, so too are the demands placed on Irish welfare organisations abroad.

Statements from some of those who will be taking part in the walk

Joanna Joyce, Emigrant Officer, Irish Bishops’ Council for Emigrants, Maynooth

Although the experience of emigration has in some ways improved, it is important that we continue to support and remember those Irish emigrants who for a variety of reasons find themselves isolated and alone, in particular the elderly Irish community abroad, the Irish Traveller community in the UK, and Irish prisoners overseas.  The Irish Chaplaincy in Britain cares for these particularly vulnerable groups and funds raised from this Walk will allow them to continue to offer essential support to those who need it most.

Eugene Dugan, Director, Irish Chaplaincy in Britain

Hometown: New York City

As part of the diaspora (my family emigrated from Bogside, Derry) I understand the challenges of those who leave behind the familiar faces and places and set off in search of a better life.  But it doesn’t always turn out the way one might hope. The Irish Chaplaincy is there for those whose dreams did not come true, and funding from this Walk will allow us to continue to serve those who may need a friendly voice or substantial assistance.

Father Gerry McFlynn, Project Manager, Irish Council for Prisoners Overseas

Hometown: Newcastle, Co Down

This year I’m marking twenty years of work with the Irish Chaplaincy in Britain by walking the emigrant path in Co Mayo to raise money for the Chaplaincy which helps prisoners, Travellers and elderly Irish people cope better with their circumstances. We help them make their futures better by living the present differently.

Conn Mac Gabhann, Project Manager, Irish Chaplaincy Traveller Project

Hometown: Omagh

The Irish Chaplaincy is working to promote the welfare of the broader Irish community in Britain.  More often than not our day-to-day work is in care homes in places like Bermondsey or on a prison wing, just reminding people that they are important.  In almost every part of England there are Irish people who are in touch with us for help with different issues.  I am walking to raise funds to make sure this help can continue.

ENDS

Notes to Editors

For media contact: Catholic Communications Office, Maynooth: Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678; Eugene Dugan 0044 (0) 207 482 5528; and for photographs call Michael Donnelly of ‘Mayo Pics’ 00 353 (0) 872654747

Please click here to download a flyer (pdf)

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