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Ireland: diocese celebrates first ordination in seven years

Fr Toomey, his mother Lil and Bishop Lee

Fr Toomey, his mother Lil and Bishop Lee

On Corpus Christi, 14 June, a member of the parish of SS Peter and Paul's, Clonmel, Rev Michael Toomey, was ordained priest for the Diocese of Waterford and Lismore by Bishop William Lee, Bishop of Waterford and Lismore.
This is the first ordination in the Diocese in nearly eight years, and comes after six years of study and preparation by Michael at St Patrick's College, Maynooth. It is also the first ordination to occur in the parish in nearly forty years.
In his homily, Bishop Lee outlined the role, duties and privileges of being a priest. Drawing on a quote from Pope Benedict XVI, he likened the role of priest to that of a shepherd, offering benevolent guidance to his congregation.
Bishop Lee said: "Your words will touch the deepest places in people's hearts." .. "People are not looking for a priest who will solve all their problems. Your role will be to deliver a message that gives meaning to life."

Fr Toomey was born in London in 1970 and until the age of 23 was a parishioner of St James' Spanish Place in Marylebone, Central London. He was educated in Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School in Kensington from 1982 - 1990. Former headmaster, Fr Tony Pellegrini of Westminster attended the ordination of Fr Toomey in Clonmel.
He is the only child of Lil Toomey (nee Gregory) of College Avenue Clonmel and his late father Johnny Toomey of St. Mary's Place Clonmel. As well as working in management for a number of years in London and Clonmel, Michael has also undertaken a number of charity works, such as hospital radio in London and Clonmel, as well as bereavement support and youth ministry projects. 
Fr Toomey celebrated his first Mass on Monday in Clonmel, and he will be the main celebrant at the 6pm Mass in St James' Spanish Place on Saturday 20 June, a Mass that he will offer in thanksgiving for all the blessings he has received. Fr Toomey will impart his first blessing to anyone wishing to receive it after this Mass.