Church of Ireland Archbishops and Moderator congratulate Micheál Martin on his election as Taoiseach
The Most Revd John McDowell, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, and the Most Revd Dr Michael Jackson, Archbishop of Dublin and Primate of Ireland, issued the following statement:
“We will be writing to congratulate the new Taoiseach, Micheál Martin, and his government, on taking office, and want to assure them publicly of our prayers and good wishes, and those of the Church of Ireland community, as they take up office at a time of unique concern and uncertainty.
“This government will face unprecedented new challenges and wrestle with a number of unresolved old ones, as they try to reshape public policy for the benefit of all the citizens of Ireland. It is a task which will require prodigious energy, resourcefulness and trust. We wish the Taoiseach and his colleagues well in the days and years ahead.”
The Moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, Rt Rev Dr David Bruce, has written to congratulate Micheál Martin on his election as Taoiseach.
In his letter, Dr Bruce talked of the ‘unprecedented fight against Covid-19 and its devastating impact in so many different areas of life.’ He continued by saying, ‘We Presbyterians see this island as our home and are part of this fight. In that, you can be assured of our support and our prayers.’
Talking about the formation of the coalition government, the Moderator said, ‘For all elected representatives, to know when to compromise is a quality that speaks of humility. Many on this island will not fail to note the significance of the putting aside of past enmities to form this new government, especially as we approach significant anniversaries in the history of the State and the life of the island of Ireland.’
Dr Bruce also referenced Brexit and how the Church also looked forward in engaging with the new Government on areas of mutual interest ‘and in support of the most vulnerable and marginalised in society.’
Full text of the Moderator’s letter to An Taoiseach
“As someone who also came to office this month, on behalf of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland, I would like to offer my congratulations on your election as Taoiseach.
“Since January’s General Election, the road to the formation of Ireland’s new government hasn’t been easy, and has been constrained by the most exceptional of circumstances. What there has been, however, is a willingness from all parties to compromise for the common good and move forward.
“For all elected representatives, to know when to compromise is a quality that speaks of humility. Many on this island will not fail to note the significance of the putting aside of past enmities to form this new government, especially as we approach significant anniversaries in the history of the State and the life of the island of Ireland. As we move towards the centenary of partition next May, for example, I sincerely hope that we will be able to speak of this in ways that are nourishing, both to those who welcome partition, and those who lament it.
“While it is important that we acknowledge the past and learn from it, your government, and its partners, face the unprecedented fight against Covid-19 and its devastating impact in so many different areas of life. We Presbyterians see this island as our home and are part of this fight. In that, you can be assured of our support and our prayers.
“As we move into the second half of 2020, Brexit will also again become headline news. This will require leadership across these islands, leadership that meets people’s hopes and fears as relationships are redefined. While island-wide, the potential effects of Brexit may come into sharper focus on those living and working in the border counties.
“Looking ahead, we also look forward to engaging with the new Government on areas of mutual interest and in support of the most vulnerable and marginalised in society.
“Finally, as you begin your first full week as Taoiseach, I am reminded that the call to leadership, especially in the political sphere, is a great honour and a great challenge. For those of us who follow the Lord Jesus Christ, we are called to pray for those in authority and you – and the coalition government that you lead – can be assured of my prayers and many in the Presbyterian Church in Ireland.”
Archbishop of Dublin Congratulates New Minister for Education and Skills
Archbishop Michael Jackson has tcongratulated the newly appointed Minister for Education and Skills. He stated:
“As chairman of the General Synod Board of Education (RI) of the Church of Ireland, and as a school patron at both primary and second level, I congratulate Ms Norma Foley, TD, on her appointment as the next Minister for Education and Skills.
“Ms Foley is a member of the teaching profession and I have no doubt that her practical experience in the classroom will be of enormous benefit in her new portfolio, especially at this time of planning to reopen schools during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I look forward to working with the new minister and, on behalf of the Church of Ireland community, wish her every good fortune in her new role.”