Institution and installation of Canon Niall Sloane.
On Saturday afternoon, 21 October, in the middle of Storm Brian, Canon Niall Sloane was instituted as rector of Limerick City Parish, and installed as Dean of St. Mary’s Cathedral, Limerick by Bishop Kenneth Kearon.
Due to the severe storm, numbers were fewer than expected. Nevertheless many people braved the elements to be there.
The service of Choral Evensong sung by the choir of St. Mary’s, under the directorship of Peter Barley, did not disappoint. The choir sang Stanford’s Magnificat in B flat and also Stanford’s setting of the Nunc Dimittis. The magnificent Psalm 122 was sung to a setting by H. Ley in D.
The guest preacher was The Right Reverend Patrick Rooke, Bishop of Tuam, Killala and Achonry. Drawing upon the Old Testament reading of the story of God calling Samuel, and the New Testament reading of the story of the Widow’s Mite, Bishop Patrick gave a powerful sermon exegeting these two passages. Speaking about Samuel’s response to God’s call, he began by giving us some background information on Canon Niall, speaking about his approachability, dependability and excellent pastoral care – always willing to go the extra mile. However, he warned that Dean Niall thrives on order and is a stickler for detail!
Bishop Patrick Rooke cautioned us that we need to allow Dean Niall to develop and use his particular gifts, and not to expect him to do everything. As part of the ministry of the whole people of God, we all need to develop our God-given talents, playing our part to the maximum. God uses each and every one of us in the building up of his kingdom. He reminded us that, in giving God her all, the widow’s humble gift was appreciated above and beyond all others, and urged us to do likewise.
Our love for God means we should listen for God’s voice and follow his direction.
“Come, follow me, and give the best you can,” to which our response should be:
“Speak Lord, for your servant is listening.”
After the service, everyone enjoyed tea, coffee and sumptuous refreshments in the Cathedral.