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A Visit to Knock

Last Saturday I was in the west of Ireland for the weekend and took the opportunity to pay a visit to Knock Shrine in Co Mayo.  The journey from Ballaghaderreen, where we were based, is a pleasant one through tranquil countryside.  We made our way past houses and shop fronts festooned with Mayo flags in… Read More

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Celebrating Grandparents

Last Sunday, July 25th, marked the first observation of the Church’s annual Day for Grandparents and the Elderly.  On January 31, 2021, Pope Francis made the announcement of this new event to be celebrated every year on the fourth Sunday in July.   In the Vatican, Archbishop Rino Fisichella, celebrated Mass in St Peter’s Basilica, standing… Read More

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A World without War, Amen

Every war has its iconic images which show the suffering that people endure as a consequence of the aggression. I am thinking of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Photographer Eddie Adams, whose 1968 ‘Saigon Execution’ helped fuel the anti-war movement and end the US involvement in Vietnam. On the front of the paper one day this week… Read More

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Patrick, the Man Behind the Myth

Sometimes I find it really amazing to think that St Patrick’s Day is celebrated the world over.  The name of our national saint is known far and wide across the globe. Of course, it has to be acknowledged that what was primarily a religious feast day has become widely secularized. This year because we are… Read More

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Making the Most of Quarantine (Lockdown)

The continuing fight against Covid-19 means that we are in the middle of another lockdown with no absolute certain end in sight.  We heard earlier this week that there will be no St Patrick’s Day parade.  While we could probably have predicted this it is still another dampener on our potential plans. In a time… Read More

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From Anti-Semitism to Auschwitz

On January 27, 1945 the notorious Nazi death camp at Auschwitz was liberated by Soviet forces.  On Monday this week, hundreds of Holocaust survivors joined delegates from world governments, (including our own President Michael D. Higgins) at the site where more than one million people were murdered when the Nazis occupied Poland during World War… Read More

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Brexit – Love Thy Neighbour

Love Thy Neighbour As a country Ireland’s nearest neighbour is of course England, that other island just across the water.  Sadly love has seldom come into the relationship between the two countries, although in recent times, and especially since the Good Friday Agreement, relations have improved greatly.  Now however, to quote a speaker I heard… Read More