Easter Rising dead to be commemorated at April service

1916 centenary is chance to deepen our understanding of who we are, say bishops

All 485 people killed in  the Easter Rising  will be remembered at an  inter-faith service in Glasnevin Cemetery (above) on Sunday next, April 3rd. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

All 485 people killed in the Easter Rising will be remembered at an inter-faith service in Glasnevin Cemetery (above) on Sunday next, April 3rd. File photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

 

All 485 people killed during the Easter Rising, including British soldiers and policemen, will be remembered at a special inter-faith service in Glasnevin Cemetery on Sunday next, April 3rd.

In attendance will be the Taoiseach and leaders of the Churches and the Jewish and Muslim faiths, from all parts of the island.

Beginning at 11am, the service will be conducted alongside marble plinths bearing the names of those who died, including children, rebels, civilians, soldiers and policemen.

The focus will be on the Rising, which took place from Easter Monday, April 24th, 1916, to April 29th, and the executions that followed in May and August of that year. Music will be by the Army Band, and the event will be broadcast live on RTÉ One television.

The Catholic Church will be represented at the service by Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin, two of whose aunts took part in the Rising, as did an uncle. Another uncle served with the British army at Gallipoli in 1915.

‘Watershed moment’

In a statement this week, the Catholic bishops said “the centenary of the Easter Rising marks the watershed moment of our political history. This pivotal anniversary provides an opportunity for us to deepen our understanding of who we are as a people and to affirm our hope for lasting peace and justice.

“We will be able to reflect on where we are as a society and on what we want to achieve for the future.

“People of faith will shape their understanding of this transformative event in the context of Christian values such as love of neighbour, respect for life, reconciliation, hope and healing.”

Later in April the Catholic primate, Archbishop Eamon Martin, will be principal celebrant at the Annual 1916 Mass of Remembrance in the Church of the Sacred Heart - church of the Defence Forces - at Dublin’s Arbour Hill.

It begins at 10am on Sunday, April 24th - exactly 100 years from the date the Rising began in 1916. Archbishop Diarmuid Martin will preside and preach the homily.

Relatives of executed

President Michael D Higgins will lead the attendance, which will include members of the government and the judiciary as well as relatives of those executed following the Rising. The Mass will be broadcast live by RTÉ.

The military cemetery at Arbour Hill is resting place for 14 of the executed leaders of the Rising, including Pádraig Pearse, James Connolly and Major John McBride.

Following the Mass, another inter-faith prayer service will be conducted at Glasnevin Cemetery.