Farewell Service for Bishop Michael Jackson
Farewell Service for Bishop Michael Jackson

A number of people gathered from across the Church of Ireland Diocese of Clogher and the wider community for a special Farewell Service for the Rt Revd Dr Michael Jackson, who served as Bishop of Clogher for nine years from 2002 to 2011. The service took place in the Cathedral Church of St. Macartin, Enniskillen on the Fifth Sunday of Lent, 10th April 2011, at 7.00pm. During his time as bishop, the Diocese of Clogher has sought to promote and nurture a living faith in Jesus Christ among those who themselves seek to serve God in serving their neighbour in parish and community.
The Diocese of Clogher was originally founded by Saint Patrick, who appointed one of his household, Macartan, as first bishop in 454. In 1535 Bishop Hugh O'Carolan was appointed to the See of Clogher by Pope Paul III, but accepted the teaching of the Reformation under King Henry VIII. From his time there are two lines of bishops in Clogher, the Roman Catholic and the Church of Ireland. The later twentieth century bishops of Clogher are to a greater or lesser extent within living memory. Names such as Buchanan, Hanson, Heavener, McMullan, Hannon and now Jackson each conjure up their own associations and recollections for people within the diocese.
The verger for the service was Mr Jack Watson, and the organist was Mrs Gillian Spence. The combined choirs of St Macartin’s Cathedral, Enniskillen, The Priory Church, Killadeas and Rossorry Parish led the singing. A number of Clergy, Diocesan Readers and Parish Readers from the diocese were in attendance, as were representatives of other denominations, including Bishop Joseph Duffy, Monsignors Sean Cahill, Richard Mohan and Joseph McGuinness, and Canon Peter O’Reilly of the Roman Catholic Church. Greetings were sent by Bishop Liam MacDaid, Roman Catholic Bishop of Clogher, the Revd David Cupples of the Presbyterian Church, and the Revds Sam McGuffin and Ken Lindsay of the Methodist Church.
The service followed the order for Evening Prayer from the Book of Common Prayer and the processional hymn was The Church's one foundation. The service was conducted by the bishop, who was assisted by the Dean, the Very Revd Kenneth Hall. The choir sang the canticle Hail, gladdening light, and Psalm 126 was led by the Precentor, the Revd Canon Noel Regan. The first reading from Isaiah chapter 35 was read by Mrs Geraldine Beattie, Diocesan President of the Mothers’ Union, and the second reading from 1 John chapter 3 was read by Adam Dudgeon, a member of the County Monaghan Area Diocesan Youth Council. The congregation and choir joined in singing the Magnificat and the Nunc Dimittis. The third reading, a reading from the Gospel according to St Matthew chapter 20 was read by Mr John Irvine, a Diocesan Reader and a Lay Honorary Secretary of Diocesan Synod and Council. The Sermon was preached by the bishop.
After the sermon, all joined in the hymn Great Shepherd of your people, hear. The prayers were led by the Dean, and the offertory hymn was Glory be to Jesus. All joined in saying the Collect for St Macartan’s Day, and after the blessing the choir sang Stainer’s arrangement of the Amen. The final hymn was Abide with me, the author of this hymn, the Revd Henry Francis Lyte, was educated at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen, where Bishop Jackson received his early education, and more recently where he served as Chairman of the Board of Governors.
After the service everyone was invited for refreshments to St Macartin’s Cathedral Hall, during which a number of speeches and presentations were made to the bishop along with his wife Inez and daughter Camilla.
The Archdeacon, the Venerable Cecil Pringle, presided and gave a brief biography of the bishop’s life to date, and spoke warmly of the bishop’s time in Clogher Diocese, and Bishop Joseph Duffy spoke on behalf of the other churches.

Having grown up in Lisnaskea Rectory while the bishop’s late father, Archdeacon Roy Jackson, was rector there, presentations were made on behalf of Lisnaskea Mother’s Union, and a painting of Lisnaskea Church, by artist Richard Pierce, was presented on behalf of Lisnaskea parish.

Presentations were also made on behalf of the Diocesan Youth Council County Monaghan Area by Adam Dudgeon and Mrs Dianne Wright-Kendrick, and on behalf of the Diocesan Youth Council County Fermanagh Area by Miss Joyce Clingan.

A presentation was made on behalf of the diocesan staff by Mr Glenn Moore, Diocesan Secretary, and on behalf of the diocese by the Archdeacon. After which both Mrs Jackson and the bishop responded.
Having marked the conclusion of Bishop Michael’s time as Bishop of Clogher, Archbishop Jackson took up the position of Archbishop of Dublin and Glendalough on Monday 11th April 2011, in succession to the Most Revd Dr John Neill.
Archbishop Jackson received his early education at Ballinamallard Primary School and as previously mentioned was later educated at Portora Royal School, Enniskillen; along with Trinity College, Dublin; St John’s College, Cambridge and Christ Church, Oxford. He was made Deacon in 1986, and Priest in 1987. He served his curacy in Zion Parish, Dublin, and lectured at Trinity College, Dublin and the Church of Ireland Theological College (now Institute) before taking up the post of College Chaplain at Christ Church College, Oxford, from 1989 to 1997. From 1997 to 2002, he was Incumbent of St Fin Barre’s Union and Dean of Cork. Archbishop Jackson has held many notable positions in the Church of Ireland, including chairmanship of the Church in Society Committee and, currently, chairmanship of the Board for Social Theology. The Archbishop has also been active in the wider Anglican Communion, especially in the arena of inter-faith dialogue.
A number of people from the diocese of Clogher will travel to Dublin to attend the enthronement of Archbishop Jackson as Archbishop of Dublin on Sunday 8th May 2011 at 4.00pm in Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin.