Sr Bernard Lynch
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis
Let us not look for you only in memory,
where we could grow lonely without you.
You would want us to find you in presence,
beside us when beauty brightens,
when kindness glows
and music beckons eternal tones.
When orchids brighten the earth,
darkest winter has turned to spring.
May this dark grief flower with hope
in every heart that loves you.
May you continue to inspire us:
To enter each day with a generous heart
To serve the call of courage and love.
Since last Monday, our world is a bit smaller, a bit darker and much emptier as we grieve the loss of our cherished friend and former principal Sr Bernard.
On this the saddest of occasions, the school wishes to acknowledge the immense contribution that Sr Bernard has given to St Peter’s NS. She was always extremely proud of this school community, just as we were of her. Sr Bernard was an inspirational, dedicated, innovative, affirming and supportive teacher and principal. She taught here from 1967 until her retirement in 1993, serving as principal from 1974 -1993. Her involvement with us continued right up to her death.
As a teacher and school leader, she devoted her time to fostering the very best in each individual, whether staff or pupil. One never wanted for anything. Apart from her dedicated service as a class teacher, she found time for many extra -curricular activities. She had a longstanding love for and involvement in music, which included preparing and conducting the school choir to sing at 10am mass every Sunday morning in SS Peter& Paul Church. She often spoke of her fond memories of those days. She also had a great grá for the Irish language and during her time in the school, prepared and entered her class many times in Féile Drámaíochta na Scoileanna, where they won many accolades. Participation in Féile Ceoil na Scoileanna became part of the school tradition under her leadership and has remained so to the present day.
Since her retirement 27 years ago, Sr Bernard has remained a mentor and ‘guardian angel’ to us all. She continued to take an interest in all our lives, both professional and personal. She has shared in our achievements, our joys and our sorrows. She remained a steadfast friend to her past colleagues and past pupils and continued to embrace the new staff and pupils in the same manner. Many are the times Bernard welcomed us to ‘Tearmonn Micheál’ for a ‘cuppa’ and a chat.
Sr Bernard was ‘a walking saint’ and friend to all. She embodied Christian values, living them out, giving selflessly to the end. She was a very prayerful person with an unshakeable faith. Some present pupils described her as gentle, holy, caring, kind, modest and selfless.
‘Christ has no body now but yours.
No hands, no feet on earth but yours.
Yours are the eyes through which He looks compassion on this world.
Yours are the feet with which He walks to do good,
Yours are the hands through which He blesses all the world’. (St Teresa of Avila)
Sr Bernard lived out the above, in every action of her life right to the end.
We have been truly privileged to have known such a woman of substance. There are many broken hearts this week and her passing has left a deep void in our lives. We have such sadness in our hearts, but may we all remember to leave space to carry love always as Sr Bernard did and leave it to spread and grow throughout our world as she did.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a hanam dílis