Bishop Donal Murray, Bishop of Limerick, visit to Kosovo

03 Apr 2008

3 April 2008

Bishop Donal Murray, Bishop of Limerick, visit to Kosovo

Bishop Donal Murray visited the troops of the 37th Infantry Group in Kosovo from 29—31 March. The lead unit of this Irish group is from Sarsfield Barracks in Limerick – including Colonel Matt Murray who commands the group and Fr Seamus Madigan, the Chaplain. The Bishop was accompanied by Monsignor Eoin Thynne, Head Chaplain to the Forces.
After arrival in Skopje Airport and a journey to Pristina there was Mass in St Anthony’s Church, Pristina, where the congregation was mainly made up of International UN personnel. The Mass was concelebrated by Bishop Murray, Monsignor Thynne and Fr Madigan. At a meal after the Mass there was a chance to meet Irish Officers who are serving with the 37th Group and in other capacities in Kosovo.

On Sunday there was a briefing about all the activities of the Irish soldiers in Kosovo. Then there was Mass with the 37th Infantry Group in Camp Clarke. After lunch there was a visit to the monasteries at Pec, Decani, and Gracanica, and to sites of significance in the area including the graveyard at Racack, scene of a major atrocity against the Albanian population. One of the most impressive aspects of the work of the troops is the voluntary humanitarian work they undertake from their own resources. The visit included a moment to meet an elderly couple who had been provided with a house by the efforts of the 37th Infantry.

After a very full 24 hours the visitors departed from Pristina Airport.

Further information:
Martin Long, Director of Communications 086 172 7678
Brenda Drumm, Communications Officer 087 233 7797