Category: Features

Avoiding pre-Christmas stress

Stress always threatens in the run-up to Christmas, but there are ways to manage it, writes Jason Osborne I recently wrote about preserving our Advent experience, but these days, it’s impossible not to run through some of the Christmas logistics early on in December, even just a little bit! With that in mind, December can be…

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Preparing for Our Lord’s arrival

Advent often goes overlooked these days, but it’s a spiritual treasure to be plundered, writes Jason Osborne Advent is upon us, like a thief in the night. Beginning last Sunday, November 28, it will run right through to Christmas Eve. Pointing out the beginning and end of Advent may seem like a moot point to…

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Overflowing with love for the Lord

Personal Profile Deacon John Taaffe was among the first men ordained to the diaconate in the diocese of Armagh. It was a long and winding road to that point, as he moved from a love of materialism, money and success, to a love of the Lord and his people. Deacon John explains that he grew…

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Finding a spouse in 21st Century Ireland

Last week we discussed the practicalities of getting married, but a more topical question might be how to date well in Ireland in 2021, writes Jason Osborne Dating is difficult, there can be no doubt about it. Dating in its current form is only a recent-enough development, but finding a suitable spouse has always been…

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Sharing a love of God’s Word in Cork

Personal Profile Dr Marian Mortell developed a love of Scripture from her school days, and it was a love the really began to flourish ten years ago. She took early retirement from her teaching career to return to study, and along with other lovers of Scripture in Cork set up the Cork Scripture Group. Dr…

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Getting married as Catholics in 2021

Getting married is a wonderful thing, but there are boxes to be ticked before getting there, writes Jason Osborne Even in an era that is slowly turning against marriage, it’s still a closely-held desire in the hearts of many singles to one day commit themselves to another at the altar. The present western culture often…

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From tilling the land to sowing God’s word

Personal Profile Fr Finbarr O’Leary, a Cork man who became a priest despite never attending secondary school, recently completed his second masters at the age of 82. His vocation took him from a rural Cork farm to Wales, South America, America and back home again. Fr Finbarr’s interest in the priesthood stems from the visit…

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How to protect ourselves online

As the virtual world becomes more a part of daily life, the necessity of protecting ourselves online increases – Jason Osbourne Recent news surrounding Facebook’s rebrand as ‘Meta’ has prompted many people to reflect on the increasing intrusion of the online and virtual into the offline and physical. A couple of years ago it was…

60 years of service to Our Lady

Personal Profile Timmy Manley admits that he was initially roped into joining his local Legion of Mary praesidium – but now, 62 years later, he continues to serve in the lay apostolate. The Watergrasshill and Glenville branch of the Legion was started in 1952, one the earlier ones to start in Co. Cork, Mr Manley…

Memento mori this November

The Catholic Church has always embraced meditation on death, and November is the month most associated with that, writes Jason Osborne The leaves continue to fall from the trees as nature uses the rest of autumn to prepare for winter, a fitting natural symbol of death, which is at the forefront of Catholic minds in the…