The most relevant analogy of the role of Chaplain in my opinion is that of the Road to Emmaus story, the accompaniment story for all Christians and none. Like Jesus, the Chaplain meets people in their present situation, walks with them, acknowledges their fears/needs/hopes and supports them in their spiritual development. I see my role as chaplain at St. Vincent’s Castleknock as being a very privileged position for facilitating a student’s personal reflection on their lives and their relationship with God, in a context of respect, understanding and friendship.
From my own experience of working in chaplaincy & pastoral care to date, I see this role as ultimately challenging students to think about their own self-image, how they relate with others. My role is to make sure they are listened to as they reflect upon their present realities and the challenges they are facing in life. In essence, the student’s development of a positive self-image is a key aim for this role.
In the 188th year of St. Vincent’s Castleknock I am beyond excited to be joining a vital part of the student support service as the first lay chaplain. While promoting the Catholic ethos set in a Vincentian tradition, our chaplaincy service is also available to all faiths and none. The liturgical dimension of its work helps marks significant occasions and events in the school year. Aware of the diverse nature of the student population, our chaplaincy service seeks opportunities to host interfaith services and para liturgies. Our Vincentian ethos underpins our chaplaincy service here at Castleknock and so it has a special concern for people who are struggling or on the margins. It promotes an awareness of Vincentian Social Justice in the students and encourages them to look beyond themselves and get involved in organisations and activities aimed at supporting people in need.
Charity is the cement which binds Communities to God and persons to one another – St. Vincent de Paul
Looking forward to working with you all,
- Chaplaincy is a vital part of the student support service at St. Vincent’s.
- The office has an open-door policy where students can drop in at any time and be supported through the ups and downs of school life or to cope with significant events such as bereavement or family breakdown.
- It is a confidential and non-judgemental space.
- It also facilitates the spiritual and liturgical life of the College Community while also supporting the student faith led initiatives such as Ember and the JPII Awards.
- It encourages students to get involved in organisations and activities aimed at supporting people in need, such as the SVP Society, the Ambo Deaf School, Vincentian Lay Missionaries (VLM) and De Paul Trust Ireland etc. It is also involved in supporting and facilitating the school’s immersion program in Ambo, Ethiopia and Kenya.
- The services of the Chaplaincy office are also available to support the parents of our students and our College staff.
You can contact MS Anne-Marie Dolan in the Chaplaincy Office by:
Any such contact is treated with the utmost confidentiality.