Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Monday, June 29, 2015
Pope Francis gave a forceful message to the world’s newest Catholic archbishops today, telling prelates who had travelled
Sunday, June 28, 2015
Saturday, June 27, 2015
The Germans have a similar tradition. Whatever the weather conditions are on Seven Sleepers Day (Siebenschläfertag) today June 27, those conditions will last for seven weeks.
It's overcast in many parts of Germany today. And the sun shines, at least early morning, in Dublin today.
Friday, June 26, 2015
Thursday, June 25, 2015
|Concern Worldwide staff at the Áras. From left:|
Gearoid Loibhead, Anne O'Mahony, Angela
Whyte and Michael Commane.
|Reminder of another era.|
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
The Norbertines were aware of his proclivity before he was ordained a priest and they went on and ordained him.
Had he been in a relationship with a woman would they have allowed him be ordained?
Tuesday, June 23, 2015
RTE’s Sunday Game presenter Michael Lyster has been in the news of late. He had a close shave with death. He had been playing golf on the day with journalist Vincent Hogan. On returning home his heart stopped beating and but for his wife applying cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) he was gone.
And if one is not ‘here’ then one is dead. It’s as stark as that. It’s the only thing we can ever predict about anyone – they will die. We all do.
I set aside Monday afternoon to visit people I know who are in hospital. It meant first going to Dublin’s Mater Hospital and then out to Tallaght Hospital.
The man I visited in the Mater was a year behind me in school. He has had his larynx removed and is in recovery mode at present. I was in a tiny way able to empathise or sort of understand his situation as my own mother also had a laryngectomy. I have been greatly impressed with his positive attitude towards his illness.
Travelling from the Mater to Tallaght by bus I kept thinking of that thin line between health and illness. When we are healthy and well we can easily think we are indestructible and yet anything can happen any day and at any age.
In Tallaght Hospital I called to a 96-year-old man whom I know for a long time. He is frail and weak. Over the years we have had great chats and I know he likes me. I even managed to get a smile out of him when I called. He has lived a healthy life but at 96 it is unlikely that he is going to bounce back to good health.
And then I called to another man. Yes, on this day it was all men I visited. That’s just a coincidence.
This man is in his late 70s. He was in terrible pain. It seems he had broken his hip. I stayed less than a minute with him. He was in no mood for visitors. There was terrible pain etched on his face. But this man, a highly intelligent person, has been plagued with mental illness all his life. I know him over 40 years and in that time he has been a regular visitor to hospitals.
What at all must his pain be like? Impossible for me to imagine.
In the past people would often refer to this life of ours as ‘a valley of tears’. It’s not something one hears too often these days. But whether or not we hear it, when we see first-hand the suffering that people experience we have no alternative but to stop and wonder. Why do some people suffer so much?
I know an elderly man who had a serious stroke over a year ago. He has a reputation for being sharp with his tongue. Indeed, on many occasions I have been at the end of his tough words. As a result of the stroke he is now greatly incapacitated and can do little or nothing for himself. Yet, I have never once heard him complain or get annoyed or angry with his situation. It’s truly inspirational.
Maybe I’m getting a hint of what Shakespeare meant when he said “…the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune..”
What sort of lottery is it at all?
Monday, June 22, 2015
Former East German and SED functionary Alexander Schalck-Golodkowski has died from prostate cancer at home in Tegernsee.
Alongside Erich Honecker and his economics secretary Günter Mittag, Schalck-Golodowski was one of the most powerful men in the former German Democratic Republic.
In 1983 he did a famous/infamous deal with CSU leader Franz Josef Strauß, which saved the GDR from bankruptcy.
His paternal grandfather was a senior Russian official in the Depatment of Finance in Gomel, Belarus.
Golodkowski's father was an offficer in the army of the Tsar before fleeing from the Bolsheviks and later he was in charge of the Wehrmacht Russian language translation school at Berlin-Moabit, close to the Dominican priory in Oldenburger Straße.
And he nearly made it to becoming Secretary of the SED and the man in charge of the GDR. The Wall fell and Germany was reunited.
Sunday, June 21, 2015
See June 15 post on this blog.
In the piece he give an insight intoThursday's eurogroup meeting and praises Irish finance minister Michael Noonan.
The article is well worth a read.
Saturday, June 20, 2015
Friday, June 19, 2015
Thursday, June 18, 2015
From today's Guardian online.
"Pope Francis has called on the world’s rich nations to begin paying their “grave social debt” to the poor and take concrete steps on climate change, saying failure to do so presents an undeniable risk to humanity.
The pope’s 180-page encyclical on the environment is not only a moral call for action on phasing out the use of fossil fuels, as was expected. It is also a document infused with an activist anger and concern for the poor, casting blame at the indifference of the powerful."
Have you noticed how when scrolling down to find your date-of-birth on a computer screen, you find yourself scrolling down further and further. And it only seems like yesterday since you were top of the list.
Wednesday, June 17, 2015
The era of the selfie.
Tuesday, June 16, 2015
Monday, June 15, 2015
The security man observed that she had small change in her hand and remonstrated with her not to pay with small change as it held up the queue.
The woman said nothing, simply cowered. Thankfully people in the queue objected to the man's behaviour.
It was shocking. The cashier looked embarrassed.
A day in the life.....
Sunday, June 14, 2015
Saturday, June 13, 2015
|Lift doors at Tallaght Hospital|
Friday, June 12, 2015
"More UK teenagers have a smartphone than a father"
Does that mean there are no smart phones in the UK?
Another headline goes:
"No peace in society without faith in God"
A work colleague, who saw this headline and who does not believe in God, was greatly offended.
And then there is the picture on the front page, which is referred to in a comment on this blog and has received national news. It is alledged the picture was used without permission of the artist.
In the same issue soothing words for the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian government. At the same time the Guardian newspaper gets a lashing as does President Obama.
Then there are stories about Sharing Joy and Opening ourselves to mercy.
Thursday, June 11, 2015
In the letter he talks about issuing P45s to members of the episcopal conference. But no mention of P45s for provincials. Why?
Is the cat out of the bag?
Wednesday, June 10, 2015
Is that now the 'expedient' thing to do?
Has it all to do with power, control and fashion?
It's a 'funny old world' and a 'funnier old church'.
What bishops were asking for such discussion when John Paul II and Benedict were popes?
Is everything always a question of following the leader in charge on the day?
Tuesday, June 9, 2015
Monday, June 8, 2015
Sunday, June 7, 2015
Saturday, June 6, 2015
O God, be gracious and bless us *
and let your face shed its light upon us.
So will your ways be known upon earth *
and all nations learn your saving help.
Friday, June 5, 2015
Here too was a brothel.
How can we give then something fresh and new
That's serious, but entertaining too."
Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Tuesday, June 2, 2015
Suddenly something happens and they urgently need to find €1,000 somewhere. They have no option but to go to a loan shark. They manage to borrow the money but it’s at a price. They will have to repay the money at exorbitant interest rates.
But because they are paying 41 per cent tax they will pay less than €590 for the bikes as PRSI and USC is also taken into account. The employer then deducts a sum every month from their salaries until they have paid for the bikes.
It’s not just a free loan for €1,000, it’s a subsidised loan.
Yes, people constantly berate the poor and less privileged, call them names, say they are lazy and are simply shy of work. Only in the last fortnight I heard a woman, indeed a knowledgeable woman, say that poor people can ‘earn’ more on the dole than at work.