Cathedral Restoration

Cathedral Restoration – February 2021

With a potential easing of construction site restrictions next month, we are hopeful work can resume on site at the Cathedral. 

In the meantime, any tasks that can be done off site are continuing – for example stonework and units for the sacristy.  On site activity ceased on 8 January 2021, in line with Government guidelines.  Up to that point, the project was on track – with the gas line laid in October 2020; the new sanctuary started in November 2020; and work on the altar commenced in December 2020.

Over the past few months, we have also been progressing the fundraising for the Cathedral restoration.  Parishioners have been very supportive and we are very grateful for everyone’s generosity.  

Hopefully by now all parishioners should have received information on the project in the post, providing some additional background and outlining potential ways you could contribute to it.  If not, please contact the parish office.  In reviewing the material, it may be helpful to know:

Why emphasise pledges?

The campaign encourages pledging because it allows individuals and families the opportunity to consider larger commitments than they could usually make in a one-off donation. This is important because of the significant goal in raising €1m+.

How are the suggested gift levels determined?

A gift amount is suggested as an example for each parishioner to consider. We have no knowledge of anyone’s financial situation. The requests are based on the need for a number of gifts at all levels to raise €1m+. Further to the at-Mass surveys in 2019, we took on board parishioners’ comments and provided a wider range of giving options.

Can I decide which amount to give?

Yes. These are suggestions only and serve to provide guidance on what giving levels are needed to ensure we achieve our goal. All gift amounts are gratefully received.

Why am I asked to complete a pledge form?

We wish to appropriately record and acknowledge all gifts. Practical information includes the payment schedule selected, allowing us to plan cash flow etc. Parishioners are asked to sign a pledge form as a good faith commitment, indicating that they have agreed to the terms of the gift indicated. It is not a legally binding document. 

How should subsequent payments be made?

You may choose to pay on your pledge monthly, quarterly or annually. While many parishioners set up standing orders, some prefer to write cheques or make a bank transfer.  All of this detail, along with the bank information, is included on the pledge form.

What if my financial situation changes and I am unable to fulfill my pledge? 

Your pledge is made in good faith. Should difficulties arise, making it impossible for you to continue your payments, please notify the Parish Centre to this effect. 

Can I give through my company?

Yes. When a company makes a donation, it can receive tax relief.  It simply claims a tax deduction (12.5%) on the donation as if it were a trading expense.

 

Cathedral Restoration Update October 18 2020

Since Monday, 12 October 2020 the Cathedral has been closed for the restoration work.  Understanding the broader public health challenges, the plan at this stage is to be back in the Cathedral by Easter 2021.  

Further to a rigorous tender process, we are delighted that JJ Rhatigan has been awarded the contract.  As a local company, many parishioners will be familiar with this family-owned, long-established business.  

Throughout the project, we will share updates on major milestones in the parish newsletter and website.

Pre the pandemic, we had commenced the fundraising and were pleased with our initial success.  We are very grateful for the generosity and commitment to date from parishioners, local businesses and friends of the Cathedral both in Tuam and further afield.

We hope to resume the fundraising in the coming weeks.  Many parishioners have been expressing their interest in providing financial support and we will share details next month, if the timing is right for you to contribute. 

In getting to this point – from both the restoration work and fundraising perspectives – we have given a lot of consideration to the best options and timing.  There has been much consultation with the Finance Committee and architects.  We are confident we have made the right decision for our Parish.  With the grace of God and the intercession of Our Lady and  St. Jarlath, we look forward to the preservation of our sacred home, one beloved by this and past generations.  The restored Cathedral will be our legacy. 

Cathedral Restoration

May 2/3 2020

Dear Parishioners,                                                      

This weekend marks the start of May, the month of Mary.  Our Cathedral is named in honour of Our Lady Assumed into heaven and so it is fitting now to share an update on the restoration.

With the wide encouragement of the Parish, we committed to undertaking Phase II.  We are steadfast in our promise to complete this project.  Due to Covid-19 and elements beyond our control, the timeline has been impacted.  As you may remember, we had hoped to commence the work this month.

Over the past few weeks, we have been liaising with the architects.  We are discussing our options, mindful of considerations such as – government restrictions on building works and the timing of the tender process to ensure the most economical outcome.  In particular, we want to ensure the Cathedral is available to parishioners when most needed, given the current trying times.  It is and will provide a special place of comfort and solace to us all.  We are aware too of the need for the Cathedral to be available at key points in the liturgical calendar.

In a very different world, pre Covid-19, we were making good progress – on the fundraising and preparatory steps – for example obtaining fire and disability access certificates.  All contributions made to date are being held in a ring-fenced fund especially for the Cathedral restoration.

After careful consultation with the experts, along with praying for guidance, we will make the best decision for the Parish.  It will not be one taken lightly.  We are resolute and will persevere – with the intercession of Our Lady and St. Jarlath.

We are very grateful for your support and generosity and will update you further in the coming weeks.

May Our Lady assumed into Heaven Pray for us.

 

Fr. Pat Farragher, Adm.

 

Notice included in the Parish Newsletter on December 21/22 2019

Over the past few weeks, we have commenced the fundraising for the Cathedral restoration.  We are pleased with our progress at this early stage and are extremely grateful for parishioners’ positive response and especially their generosity.

There are many ways to fundraise – from organising events to holding second collections at weekend Masses.  Given the significance of the project and the financial goal, we are ensuring a personal approach which is the most effective for an initiative of this scale.  Father Pat and Father Seán are meeting with as many parishioners as possible on a one-to-one basis.  This allows the opportunity to ask questions and gives the space to make a decision that is right for each family.  As you can appreciate, this takes time and we intend to continue into the 2020.

All giving is voluntary.  Our hope is that when you are contacted, please be open to learning more about the restoration and considering how you can support this special work.

In the meantime, please pray for our continued success and remember previous generations who enabled us to have this sacred place of worship.

 

Tuam Cathedral helpful info

Tuam Cathedral helpful info2

 

east window

Conservation and Restoration Project on the O Connor East Window in the Cathedral of the Assumption Tuam (Photo: Daithí Quinn)

The East Window was created in 1832 and is the work of Michael O Connor of Dame Street Dublin.  It is one of the finest examples of pre-famine stained glass in Ireland.  Between March and August 2019 all panels of the window underwent full repair and conservation.   This repair was deemed necessary as some of the stained glass pieces had begun to fall to the ground and there was significant water ingress through the window and tracery during recent winters. The pointing in the limestone tracery of the window and the surrounding gable wall was completely raked out and replaced with lime-based pointing as part of the restoration process.