30Apr Presider’s Page for 30 April (Third Sunday of Easter)

During the Easter season the Church continues to celebrate Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. Today, we join together to worship God, who has brought about this great victory over sin and death.

25Apr It’s still Easter

Bernard Cotter writing recently in The Tablet noted how "It is a strange feature of those who control the consumer calendar, that every feast is celebrated to the full beforehand rather than on the day itself or indeed on any day in its immediate aftermath. Christmas and Easter share a common fate in this regard."
"How does one respond to the challenge of sustaining Easter joy over its full season? Communication is the Church’s primary tool. Perhaps instead of making so much of the 40 days of Lent on their own, the 90 days of Lent/Easter should in their entirety comprise the annual springtime renewal for Christians, with 40 days of fasting, prayer and almsgiving followed by 50 days of feasting, prayer and celebration (a time to honour those in parish ministries with social time together, perhaps)."

20Apr Have fun with faith!

Seamus Ahearne writes of how current events - among them "Kim Jong-un and Trump. Two bully boys let loose in our fragile world with bombs and nuclear possibilities" - lead him into recalling images from a distant past. Sadly, "We were full of negativity. The Church was full of misery."
Seamus says we need to "Have fun with faith. Make a splash."

13Apr A View from the Pew

Rita Fernandez is a member of the Parish Pastoral Council and is also one of the Parish Team in Rivermount Parish, Finglas.
Rita shares some thoughts on her experience of the reality of parish life.

27Mar A no-brainer

Brendan Hoban, writing in the Western People, suggests it's time church authorities caught up with the outlook of the vast majority of the membership of the church with regard to the issue of married priests. Brendan says that 'inevitably, the penny eventually drops'.
Brendan points to the outgoing Papal nuncio, Archbishop Charles Brown stating "after his last public Mass in Ireland, that he was alarmed at the age-profile of Irish priests, the few entering seminaries and his fear that the Irish Church was on a cliff edge, ready to go into ‘free fall’. Strangely, while in office as papal nuncio, Archbishop Brown didn’t strike such a pessimistic note; indeed to the frustration of many he kept talking about ‘green shoots of recovery’ in the Irish Church."

20Mar Our need for heroes and the curse of certainty

Seamus Ahearne decides to be "totally irreverent".
"I want less perfect people and more colour and character. We have produced a faith that glorifies perfection and is totally unreal. We spun yarns about the so-called saints and made them very unreal. We did the same with Jesus. We had no taste for the poetry and metaphor and story of Scripture and then deadened everything with literalism."
"Life is complicated. We get glimpses of insight. Nothing is simple. We need our heroes. We need our colourful characters. We need people who have a go at living. Does it really matter if they fail or fall? "

04Mar Statement from the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) on the Tuam Babies revelations and the resignation of Marie Collins from the Vatican Commission on Clerical Sex Abuse

Statement from the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP) on the Tuam Babies revelations and the resignation of Marie Collins from the Vatican Commission on Clerical Sex Abuse

03Mar ‘Apologia pro vita sua’ (or something like that).

Seamus Ahearne, in thinking of the late Des Connell, asks that when he was appointed "Who thought about the man? Who worried about the suitability of this person? Could this man face the burden of leadership of a Church in Dublin at that time? Was he flexible in his thinking; was he adaptable; was he good humoured; was he strong enough to cope; had he the personality to bend and laugh and mix and take the arrows and stones that could be thrown at him? Was he a team worker? "
Questions as relevant for the appointment of a bishop today.

21Feb ‘Thinkers needed for the Wasteland!’

Seamus Ahearne offers his thoughts on some of the issues and people that have been in the spotlight recently.
"I thank God for working in me and I am in awe. It doesn’t make me good or great. But the fun, happiness and wonder of every day is miraculous. The holiness of each day shouts at me. I have been blessed. I never bother my head thinking if only. If only what. Married. Children. Grandchildren. What has been; is done. What is; I live with. What shape tomorrow is; I can help make. Are there things I would like to make different. Of course, but I don’t have the energy to dream backwards."

13Feb “the apostolate of the ear”

Sarah Mac Donald, writing in the National Catholic Reporter, gives an interesting account of the Irish bishops' visit to Pope Francis.
"But while Francis was telling the bishops he wanted to hear their problems and criticisms, back in Ireland, the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP), ... issued a statement expressing themselves as "disappointed, frustrated and angry" that, after six years of attempting to engage the bishops in a "respectful and mutual consideration of issues central to the health and well-being of the Irish Catholic church," the bishops had "pulled the plug on any future engagement with the ACP."




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