Annual St Iberius Fast is off to a flying start in Wexford
Despite a very wet start, spirits remained high outside St Iberius' Church as Fr Aodhán Marken and Rev Arthur Minion began the annual St Iberius Four Day Christmas fast.
Following the launch of the fast on Sunday evening, the pair joined together on the steps of the church where they will be each day until Christmas Eve. Speaking outside St Iberius' on Monday, Rev Minion said that the fast was going well so far.
'It was a wet morning here but once the sun came out, it made a huge difference,' he said. 'We are praying for fine weather.'
Though Fr Marken had to go to a funeral on Monday morning, Rev Minion said that he would be back at 1 p.m. to resume the fast and collection.
The pair have already seen a very generous response from the Wexford public since the launch of the fast on Sunday. All of the funds raised will be donated to six beneficiaries: St Vincent de Paul, Ozanam House, Wexford Women's Refuge, Wexford Hospice Homecare, Cancer Research and some of the victims of the recent floods in Ireland.
'When we were thinking of raising money for the flood victims, someone offered to give us a very sizeable donation for them,' explained Rev Minion. 'So we decided to have them as one of our beneficiaries. Some people have been hit very hard by the recent floods.'
Throughout the four day period, the only drinks to be consumed by participants will be water or tea and coffee without milk and sugar. A cup of Bovril for salt or a bottle of Lucozade for sugar may be taken if a person has been advised by a doctor to do so. A takeaway paper cup of soup will be available for each participant from Westgate Design Centre daily. Despite these restrictions, Rev Minion said he was not feeling the hunger just yet.
'I'm not too bad. I had my last meal at 5 p.m. on Sunday,' he said.
The four day fast will continue until Christmas Eve, ending with a Carol Service in St Iberius' Church at 4 p.m.