Bishop Ray and Mark Leen to lead special event

The shrine to St Pio in the Church of Saints Stephen and John in Castleisland.
Picture: John Reidy

The Bishop of Kerry and Emerald Elvis are to join forces at a special service to mark the 54th anniversary of the death, in 1968, of Padre Pio.

Huge crowds are expected in Castleisland for the event this Friday night when Saint Pio devotions will return to the Church of Saints Stephen and John at 7.30pm with the first live congregation since the pre-Covid era.

The witness will be given by popular and charismatic entertainer Mark Leen, also known as The Emerald Elvis, and the chief celebrant will be Bishop Ray Browne.

Bishop of Kerry Ray Browne
The Emerald Elvis Mark Leen

Castleisland Parish Priest, Fr Mossie Brick, confirmed that the Padre Pio healing glove will be available for blessings after Mass.

He said in the course of his remarkable lifetime, Padre Pio had the power of healing sickness of both body and mind and he had innumerable miracles to his credit.

“Because of the wounds, or stigmata, he had to wear gloves and several pairs were found in his cell after his death in 1968.

“We’re privileged to have one of them coming to Castleisland on this occasion,” Fr Brick said.

“Saint Pio is the healing saint of our time and, along with healing, he possessed the gifts of discernment – a reader of minds, prophecy and bi-location”.

The sick especially identify with Saint Pio because of his own sufferings after he was crucified without a cross. Saint Pio died on 23 September 1968.

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