Bishop Barry's message to Catholics at all Sunday Masses
Holy Father sends message to family members of Pike River Coal Mine tragedy
The Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI, has sent a message to Bishop Barry and Father John Morrison (Greymouth Parish Priest) on Thursdsay 25th November as follows:
"The Holy Father was saddened to learn of the tragedy that has taken place at Pike River Mine, near Greymouth. His holiness shares the sorrow of the families and friends of the miners and he remembers all of them in a special way in his prayers. Upon everyone concerned the Holy Father cordially invokes Almighty God's blessings as a pledge of consolation and strength."
Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone
Secretary of State
Prayer for all those invovled in the Pike River Coal Mine tragedy
Father of mercies and God of all consolation,
you pursue us with untiring love
and dispel the shadow of death
with the bright dawn of life.
Comfort your family in their loss and sorrow.
Be our refuge and our strength, O Lord,
and lift us from the depths of grief
into the peace and light of your presence.
Your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ,
by dying has destroyed our death,
and by rising, restored our life.
Enable us therefore to press on toward him,
so that, after our earthly course is run,
he may reunite us with those we love
when every tear will be wiped away.
We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
(Source: Order of Christian Funerals)
A prayer resource has been put together by our Catholic Education Office for use in schools. This can be adapted as you wish for your own situation.
Greymouth Ministers' Association again asks for prayers for those affected by Pike River Coal Mine
Thursday 25th November
On Wednesday the 24th at the 4pm family briefing we were told of the second explosion and there was an immediate outpouring of grief as the reality of the news hit people. In itself this showed how much people had been holding onto hope, a hope which was now gone. There was also anger from a minority who felt that things could have been done differently and they expressed themselves loudly and vocally as they stormed from the building. The majority however supported Peter Whittall and the Pike staff because what they had feared all along happened. Imagine a rescue team in the mine when the second explosion occurred and the ramifications of that. The families and wider community are now in the various stages of the grief process and we along with many others are supporting them the best we can.
So on behalf of our community we request prayer for the following
- For the families who have lost their loved ones. For the Holy Spirit to come and bring comfort and peace to individuals and families, to ease their pain, to help them through the grieving process and that they would continue to seek out help and support as and when they need it.
- Give thanks for the wisdom of those directly involved in the rescue process. Their caution probably saved more lost lives.
- Continue to pray that God's people will follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in offering comfort, care and support to those in need.
- Pray for the recovery of the bodies. The families and wider community all want and need their men back. It will make the grieving process easier and bring a better degree of closure. Pray therefore for the efforts of Pike Staff and the Recovery teams as the seek to render the mine safe enough for the recovery of the bodies.
- Give thanks for our national media who have been excellent but continue to pray for the overseas media in particular that they will be compassionate and gentle in their quest for information. Not intrusive and invasive. To see the people and not just the story.
- Pray for the pastors and clergy of the community, for wisdom in handling the media, sensitivity and compassion in dealing with families especially now as they support families in their grief and in time begin to prepare for funerals. Continue to pray for strength and the Spirit's sustaining for the duration.
- Continue to pray for those struggling emotionally, especially now with the news of no survivors for those with survivor guilt, unresolved and also for those with now re-opened grief from previous mining tragedies and for those providing counseling and comfort.
- Pray for the the work colleagues of those lost who because of the common bond are feeling this more than most apart from the families themselves. Some are struggling with the thought of returning underground to work and others because of their more informed knowledge will be wrestling with how that impacts what they say to people in relation to chances of recovering the bodies, the future of the mine and so on. Pray for wisdom here.
- Pray for all those supporting families that they would offer appropriate care and support that would be of real benefit to the families.
- Pray for our town as the Spirit leads. This will leave a scar and shape our identity for the future but we want the processing of our communal and wider grief not to lead us crippled and dysfunctional in the future but rather stronger and more resilient as a community.
- Pray for the "Community Remembrance Service" on Thursday the 2nd of Dec at 2pm at Omoto that it will be a fitting service for the families and the wider community as they wait for their loved ones to come home. That those organising and fronting the event will have real wisdom in shaping the service and in selecting the words they say. Pray too that there will be a fitting balance between local and national needs.
Greymouth Ministers' Association asks for prayers for those affected by Pike River Coal Mine
Tuesday 23rd November 2010
On Friday the 19th of November an explosion ripped through the Pike River coal mine between Greymouth and Reefton leaving 29 miners and contractors unaccounted for below ground. Because of the size and close knit nature of our community virtually everyone is affected in some way. Rescue efforts are ongoing but are dependent on various gas
readings reaching safe and consistent levels. Despite the length of time already passed the possible convergence of a number of factors could mean that there are still survivors.
So on behalf of our community we request prayer for the following
- For the families of those underground. For the Holy Spirit to come and bring comfort and peace to individuals and families, to ease their anxiety, to enable them to persist in patience. To seek out help and support as and when they need it and not to give up hope.
- For those directly involved in the rescue, for wisdom in their decision making in the way they go about the rescue, support the families, handle the media and so on. May they be ready to listen, consult and work well together, and that they too are supported.
- That God's people will follow the leading of God's Spirit in offering comfort, care and support to those in need.
- For things beyond human control for example for a supernatural reduction in gas levels, for a barometric high to develop over the area, for mist and wind to reduce to enable safer flying for the helicopters, and so on.
- For the media that they will be compassionate and gentle in their quest for information, not intrusive and invasive, and see the people and not just the story.
- Pray for the pastors and clergy of the community, for wisdom in handling the media, sensitivity and compassion in dealing with families and strength for the duration. Pray especially for Rev. Tim Mora chairperson of the Greymouth Ministers Association and for Fr John Morrison, Monsignor Gerry O'Connor, Father Jolly and Father Phil King-Turner.
- And to pray for those trapped underground. Assuming that they are alive and together that they would support and sustain each other and make wise decisions of their own around survival and if they have not survived to begin preparing the hearts of families for the worst. That they will be surrounded by those who can support them if and when news of the worst kind finally comes.