Bishop Crean calls for prayer for the farming community in present crisis
“I am concerned about the impact of this stressful time on individual farmers and their families … A sense of solidarity and concern will be of enormous help at this time” – Bishop Crean
Few are unaware at this point of the plight of so many families in the farming community. The fodder crisis is truly severe. Normally, at this time of the year farmers would be happy to see their livestock grazing in luscious new springtime grass. Sadly, due to a second year of unusual weather patterns, the conditions for growth of new season grass and the prospects of new fodder harvest for next winter is bleak.
This reality has placed great stress on many farmers and their families. I commend the efforts of the Minister of Agriculture, Mr Simon Coveney on the initiative to supply emergency fodder to get farmers over this critical period.
I am concerned about the impact of this stressful time on individual farmers and their families. Firstly, I appeal to individual farmers not to let pride or shame get in the way of seeking whatever assistance that is being provided. That a farmer runs out of fodder in these exceptional circumstances is not a sign of failure rather the result of an unusual set of conditions which no one could have predicted. Secondly, I appeal to farmers to “look in” on your neighbours and enquire how they are managing. A sense of solidarity and concern will be of enormous help at this time.
Finally, I ask for the prayer of whole community of faith for those in difficult circumstances. Indeed, prayer for a delayed springtime and a good harvest is right and fitting, in this bleak, if not desert experience in the farming community. So I ask that priests and people urban and rural will remember these intentions in their prayer over these coming weeks.
Bishop of Cloyne
For media contact: Diocese of Cloyne 021 4811 430 or the Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678