With the announcement of changes to Mass times across the Diocese of Clogher, there is a feeling within many of the parishes that the changes may have a detrimental effect on the Church.

In his letter read out at Masses last weekend Monsignor McGuinness stated that there is a clear recognition of the importance of each church to its local community so “that Mass continues to be celebrated in all the churches of the diocese and that every church continues to be a living place of worship. There is no question of any church being closed”.

Eileen McGourty, principal of Killyhommon Primary School and parishioner in the Parish of Botha said the announcement came as a “bombshell” to many.

“The most disappointing part of it for me was that there was no consultation. For me personally, I have a very strong connection to Boho and connection to Monea and I feel very passionately that a weekly service is the least the communities should be given.

“I don’t know how this is going to pan out, but I do envisage that people will want to voice their concerns and I hope that they do. I would hope that people throughout the whole Diocese would certainly ask questions and I am sure nothing is set in stone and you’d hope with dialogue it would be sorted and tweaked and changed because I don’t believe that one arrangement can fit all.”

Mrs. McGourty also believed it was unfortunate that the news was delivered on the weekend when the new Parish Priest Fr. Deery began his ministry and fears the work that has gone on in the Parish is in jeopardy.

“There would be a concern that a lot of work that has gone on might now wane. Without energy and people to sustain that work there is a concern that the engagement of people, especially young people, will be lost.

“The community needs to work together and be very unified on this. It is important that the services are maintained in all three churches.

“I’m sure that common sense will prevail and peoples' voices will be listened to because it is so important that they are listened to and the church respects the voice of the people here because the people are the church.”