Category: Parenting

Newman’s vision more vital than ever

A parent’s perspective I’ve taken a great interest in Blessed John Henry Newman recently and was delighted with the announcement that he is to be canonised in Rome on October 13 this year. By all accounts, he was an amazing man: a great scholar, a friend to many, a great priest and pastor, a musician…

Dad’s Diary

One of my earliest memories is riding a horse through an Arcadian meadow with my father. I recall a deep feeling of happiness and safety in his presence, with his arms either side of me, holding the reins and keeping me safe. The scene was indescribably perfect, infused with a warm, golden light. It was…

Faith in the Family

We – all six of us – have just come back from a holiday in the beautiful city of Brugge in Belgium. We had met in the airport in Dublin, delighted at the prospect of going away together. That evening, having settled into our AirBnB, we went out for a walk. Along by the canals,…

Dad’s Diary

French campsites remain for me the archetypal holiday destination. It’s hard to describe the utter excitement we felt at arriving in France as children. The first time I left Ireland, in the early 1980s, was aboard a ferry which departed from just near my home in Cork. The ferry port was so close that we…

Faith in the Family

I feel a yearning for the wild. I don’t mean I plan to run off and behave badly, I just mean I have a deep desire to go and sit and be in a wild place, listening, noticing and not ‘doing’ anything else. Life has been rather hectic recently. We have just completed our fourth and…

Dad’s Diary

To children, the summer holidays are infinite.  Once they begin, their pace of life slows. Mornings no longer involve wolfing down a bowl of cornflakes, followed by frantic searches for hairbrushes and missing parts of school uniforms. Time takes on a looser form, as the normally sharp distinction between weekdays and weekends suddenly disappears.  Soon,…

Spread your wings to create a DIY birdfeeder

Inspiring an appreciation for nature and care for animals is what many parents strive to foster in their children. With one activity you can check this box as well as so many others. Building a bird feeder using a cardboard carton is a good way of recycling, being creative as well as helping local wildlife…

Faith in the Family

I’ve had a few ‘Feeding the 5,000’ experiences lately. The first was a Guest Tea at our GAA club – afternoon tea and a variety of entertainment from Traditional music and recitations to the short play or ‘Leiriú’ which our club got through to the All-Ireland Scór final this year. People hosted tables, providing everything…