Saothar Chumann Gaelach na hEaglaise molta ag Uachtarán na hÉireann.
Bhí baill agus cairde Chumann Gaelach na hEaglaise in Áras an Uachtaráin, 24 Meitheamh 2014, ag fáiltiú speisialta leis an Uachtarán, Micheál D Ó hUiginn, chun saothar an Chumainn a chomóradh.
Tá Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise ag comóradh an chéid i mbliana agus ba mhór an phribhléid do bhaill agus cairde an Chumainn cuairt a thabhairt ar an Uachtarán. Bhí an tUachtarán flaithiúil ina mholtaí maidir leis an gCumann. Dúirt sé;
‘We should never underestimate the enormous contribution that Dughlás de hÍde and others of his faith made to Irish language and literature’.
Rinne an tUachtarán tagairt don éacht atá déanta thar na blianta chun na Gaeilge a fhorbairt agus gan dearmad a dhéanamh ar cé chomh lag is a bhí an teanga ag deireadh na 19ú aois déag nuair nach raibh ach 12 faoi gcéad de pháistí faoi deich mbliana d’aois in ann Gaeilge a labhairt, ach go háirithe nuair a bhí ceithre mhilliún duine in ann é a labhairt tamaillín roimhe seo. Mhol an tUachtarán an Cumann,
‘Organisations like Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise play a significant role in ensuring a rich context of empathy and understanding as we view the events and stories which create the many chapters of our national narrative’
Dúirt an tEaspag Michael Burrows, Deoise Chaisil, Fearna agus Osraí agus Éarlamh Chumann Gaelach na hEaglaise go raibh an Cumann fíorbhuíoch as an gcuireadh agus gur chuir flaithiúlacht an Uachtaráin áthas agus gliondar ar a chroí. Luaigh sé gur bunaíodh an Cumann chun saibhreas na Gaeilge a cheiliúradh in Eaglais na hÉireann agus go raibh traidisiún bródúil fada ag an Eaglais, ach go háirithe an éacht a rinne Dúghlas de hÍde, An Craoibhín Aoibhinn.
‘In ár bpaidreacha coitianta bímid ag lorg áilleachta naofa, mar atá ráite sa Saltair, agus tugann an Ghaeilge cabhair speisialta dúinn é de bhrí an fhuinnimh, na fuaimeanna agus na mistéire atá inti’.
Thagair sé don dul chun cinn atá déanta ag an gCumann, ach go háirithe i dTuaisceart Éireann, agus freisin don ról ag an Uachtarán, mar fhile agus ‘ambassador’ iontach don Ghaeilge.
Luaigh sé focail Yeats:
‘where all the ladders start” and the ladders that beam angels towards heaven are rested on foundations laid by saints who spoke, prayed, loved and taught through Irish’.
President Michael D. Higgins entertains the members of the Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise on 24th June last.
The Work of Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise praised by President Higgins
Members and friends of Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise were hosted by President Michael D. Higgins at a reception in Áras an Uachtaráin (24th June) to mark the organisation’s centenary.
The Irish Guild of the Church of Ireland has been promoting the Irish language in the Church since 1914 and the Guild was delighted to receive high praise from the President for their efforts in keeping the language alive.
President Higgins said that the Cumann’s centenary was a milestone and an impressive tribute to their efforts in the promotion of the Irish language in the Church of Ireland.
He also referred to Ireland’s first President, Douglas Hyde. ‘We should never underestimate the enormous contribution that Dúghlas de hÍde and others of his faith made to the Irish language and literature,’ he said.
He went on to say that at the end of the 19th Century the language was very weak and was spoken by less than 12% of children under 10, having only a few short years earlier been spoken by four million people. But he said there were people who saw the value of the language.
He praised the Cumann saying, ‘Organisations like Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise play a significant role in ensuring a rich context of empathy and understanding as we view the events and stories which create the many chapters of our national narrative.’
Bishop Michael Burrows, Patron of Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise said that Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise was very privileged and honoured to be received by President D. Higgins on this special occasion and thanked the President for his generosity.
Bishop Burrows said that the Cumann was founded to celebrate the richness of the language in the Church of Ireland and that there was a proud and long association of support by members of the Church, not least the major contribution made the first President of Ireland, Dúghlas de hÍde, An Craoibhín Aoibhinn [his pen name].
‘We seek out harmony and beauty in our prayers, as instructed in the Psaltar, and our native language helps us in a special way because of the energy, mystery and sounds that permeate the language’.
He also referred to the great progress that has been made in promoting the work of Cumann Gaelach na hEaglaise in recent times, not least in Northern Ireland. He complimented President Higgins in his role as ambassador for the language and as a poet, ending with the words of Yeats:
‘where all the ladders start’ and the ladders that beam angels towards heaven are rested on foundations laid by saints who spoke, prayed, loved and taught through Irish’.
Report courtesy the Church of Ireland Gazette and photography by Lynn Glanville.