It has been an honour for me to be warmly welcomed into many communities and given the opportunity to learn from them and minister to them in both the ordinariness and extraordinariness of their everyday lives. Everyday life in a parish can be quite diverse, with occasions of celebration and also of sadness.

John Gerard Acton
Shane Costello

’I think it’s a wonderful time to be a priest in Ireland. The Church here is obviously facing many challenges, such as an increasingly secularised society and falling clergy numbers - however this presents new opportunities for faith and evangelisation. I believe the greatest challenge for a priest nowadays is how to positively present the Gospel to a generation who perhaps do not see any value in it or are indifferent. As a priest you accompany people during many of the most significant events of their lives, such as baptisms, weddings or funerals. This is a very special and yet humbling aspect of priestly ministry.

Shane Costello, Tuam
Tony Mc Aleese

’The call to Priesthood took many years to develop for me, and I have learned that the most prominent thing about being a priest today is simply to be there for the community - during the happy times, and the less happy times. Eugene O’Neill and Fr. Brendan McGee and I are all are stationed in North Belfast and are all graduates of Maynooth. This community was one of the worst affected during the troubles. We have learnt that the priest is that person who can bridge divides, to talk to all people of God and give that witness that Christ is present in this world. My time in St. Patrick’s has given me an understanding of a Church that is more than just a building; it’s given me a foundation of theology that I can develop day to day. Have I made mistakes – absolutely – but that’s one of the things I took with me from my time at Maynooth, that you can make mistakes but it’s a case of doing better, achieving more and sharing that good wisdom. St. Patrick’s doesn’t just stand as a building in Kildare, it’s a living base for thousands of people to bring the message of Christ to the all corners of the globe

Fr Tony McAleese, Graduate of Maynooth, Ordained in 2018 and Curate of St. Patrick’s Parish, Belfast

Video Testimonials


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