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Archbishop: courage of 1916 needed

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President McAleese lays a wreath during the annual 1916 state commemoration at Arbour Hill

President McAleese lays a wreath during the annual 1916 state commemoration at Arbour Hill

President McAleese lays a wreath during the annual 1916 state commemoration at Arbour Hill

Archbishop of Dublin Diarmuid Martin has called for a renewed sense of national purpose and pride at the annual 1916 state commemoration at Arbour Hill.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny joined relatives of those who fought and died in the rising for a memorial mass followed by a wreath laying ceremony led by President Mary McAleese at rebel leaders' graves.

Archbishop Martin compared the state of the country today with the poverty, political turmoil and disastrous economic climate of 95 years ago.

"Those who fought and died in 1916 realised however that with courage and vision things could change," he said.

"We pray at this national commemoration for a renewed sense of national purpose, of national pride and of a willingness to commit ourselves to realising in our time a vision for our future in which all care, in which all participate and all contribute.

"We remember those who died for a noble idea: that God will reward them for their courage and idealism and that we will remember and honour them by the way we live as active and caring citizens of our republic today and tomorrow."

The Arbour Hill ceremony included a mass at the Church of the Most Sacred Heart for the souls of those who died in the 1916 rising. It was followed by a procession from the church to the memorial for the 14 leaders of the Easter Rising before President McAleese laid a wreath in honour of those who died.

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A minute's silence was also observed followed by the sounding of the last post.

After the ceremony Justice Minister Alan Shatter hosted a reception for guests, including relatives of the 1916 leaders.

Senior judges, gardai and military chiefs and other dignitaries also attended the ceremony.


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