Category: Feature

‘We must resist the temptation to retreat – the Church must be out there meeting people’

Despite the challenges, rumours of the Church’s demise are greatly exaggerated Bishop Paul Dempsey tells Michael Kelly When the parish priest of Newbridge Fr Paul Dempsey got a call from the Pope’s ambassador in Dublin in mid-December requesting a meeting he quickly made arrangements to go to the capital. The Papal Nuncio Archbishop Jude Okolo…

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GAA club offer pitch for big Derry Mass

A unique Sunday Vigil Mass was celebrated at Eoghan Rua GAA grounds in Portsteward, Co. Derry with about a 100-person strong congregation. It took place in mid-August on the club pitch. Attendees included Matthew who recently received his First Holy Communion and several parishioners who had been cocooning from the coronavirus who were attending Mass…

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Unearthing Ireland’s religious past

New technology offers a fascinating insight into the religious nature of the early Irish writes Jason Osborne The veil of time has been pulled back and a direct glimpse into Ireland’s pre-historic past was offered as a joint team of archaeologists from Belfast and Aberdeen unearthed what they believe to be evidence of a series…

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Our Lady of Mount Carmel

The Irish Spirit – Issue No. 13 From the book Meeting God The Carmelite Order has always been regarded as Marian by the People of God. In addition to devotion to Our Lady of Mount Carmel throughout the Church, there is also apparent reinforcement in apparitions which allude to the title or image of Our…

The Way of the Cross

The Sunday Gospel Fr Silvester O’Flynn OFM Cap. As we advance in our readings from Matthew’s Gospel (Matt 16:21-27), Jesus leaves Galilee and heads south towards Jerusalem. He tries to make it clear to his disciples that Jerusalem would mean his rejection, his death on the cross and rising on the third day. This is…

Celebrating the sacraments after lockdown

Banned under lockdown, we can now return to the sacraments but not as we knew them writes Ruadhán Jones Typically, almost 17,000 children are confirmed every year in the Archdiocese of Dublin alone. Only a minute percentage of these have been able to take place thus far. Similarly, during lockdown thousands of weddings were cancelled…

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The Celtic Spirit: Hospitality and Heroes

The Irish Spirit – Issue No. 12 Grace Clunie God bless the poor, God bless the sick, God bless our human race. God bless our food, God bless our drink, All homes, O God, embrace – Van De Weyer The offering and receiving of hospitality was one of the centrally important aspects of Celtic community.…

Beautiful Sacraments

The Irish Spirit – Issue No. 12 They celebrate the divine presence already in our hearts From the book Treasured and Transformed by Daniel O’Leary It is common, unfortunately, for preachers to talk about the sacraments in terms of offering grace to graceless people. This presumes, to a greater or lesser extent, that those who…