This week’s ‘Monday at the Monastery’ talks in Glasthule, Co. Dublin will feature two lay workers with the Presentation Bothers’ Youth and Evangelisation Ministry.
Jemma Halpin of the Cork Youth Ministry is to speak, as is John
Quinn, who has been organising the series in Dublin attended by 40–70
participants each week during Advent.
For the first time, talks can be viewed on the Presentation Brothers’
website. Interviews about the series have featured on Spirit Radio.
The ‘Monday at the Monastery’ initiative was started in 2013 by the
Presentation Brothers in Glasthule as part of a refocus on their
“We try to get speakers who have a relevance to people,” said John
Quinn, Evangelisation Officer, Presentation Brothers, Glasthule.
“For the Year of Mercy we had John Waters talking on different themes
of Mercy. This year in Advent we have the idea of faith and life coming
together. Where faith meets modern life is the overall theme.”
One talk by business coach and trainer, Elizabeth Garry-Brosnan,
focused on ‘The Soul at work in Ireland today’. Alan and Dianne Morris
spoke on marriage and parenting.
There is a strong sense of community among those from the parish and
community in Glasthule who attend the sessions. There has also been an
outreach to younger people to encourage them to attend the Monday talks
as well as other events.
While the Presentation Brothers have been known for their tradition
of working in schools, and this continues under a schools trust, they
are now getting more involved in other work.
John Quinn took up his post as Evangelisation Officer more than a year ago.
“One of the things that drew me to this job is the fact that the
Presentation Brothers are really trying to re-engage with their mission
which is to form Christ in the young, and the way that they do that is
through youth ministry and the evangelisation,” he explained.
“Really what the Presentation Brothers are trying to do now is to
step out and be bold and creative as [Pope] Francis has asked.”
John Quinn was working in youth ministry in a parish in Wimbledon in
London, but wanted to return to Ireland with his wife. He told
CatholicIreland.net that he could not believe when the job that he is
passionate about came up, and it was in the location where he originally
came from in South County Dublin.
During his four years in the UK, he learned about the Church there and how it is what he called an ‘opt in’ Church.
“You had to be more creative and get out and engage with people to
try to bring them into a relationship with Christ,” he explained.
He added that in Ireland “we suppose everybody is Catholic and that
is maybe where some of our problems come from. So we are trying to
re-engage and try new ways to bring people into that relationship [with
Christ], and moving on from the culture of Catholicism into intentional
In Cork the Presentation Brothers’ Youth Ministry includes ‘Movies
with Meaning’, which involves looking at different films with young
people and encouraging them to engage in discussion and think about them