Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Tickets please!

Apparently, there is a Mass in Ireland which is so popular that, for Christmas, the parish has decided to make it an "all ticket" affair.

It will be at Christmas, and is described as a "Family Mass" in the parish of St. Maur, in the town of Rush, in north County Dublin.

Rush used to be a village, and now it is a growing dormitory town about 18 miles north of Dublin city centre. If you ever want to go there, just go to and search for the schedule for route 33.

This story broke on Monday on RTE' Radio One's Liveline programme.

If you go to here, scroll down the page to the Listen Back point and click on Monday. The item starts about four and a half minutes into the programme.

News story from Catholic Ireland website.

Photos of the church itself are available from the architects' website.

And here is something else from another online newspaper, including a quote from the curate.

One thing I do know about this church is that it is next door to another one which is about a hundred years older; I can't remember the full story, but the decision was made to build a new one, I think partly because of population growth, partly because of the state of the original church; in fact, I haven't been in that town for years, and I don't even know for certain if the old church is still standing.

Now I have never been at this Family Mass, so I can't pass judgement; but reference to "Irish dancing" taking place makes me a little nervous.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Does YOUR bishop publicly reveal his salary?

If you live in the northern part of County Mayo, the answer is Yes.

BISHOP John Fleming, in a letter to the priests and people of Killala diocese, has launched an appeal for funds for the parishes and the diocese of Killala.

The full story is here. In the paragraph with salary details, all amounts are in euro.

More here from another local paper. This paper describes a committee of priests which works at setting the levels of priests' salaries.

Priest savagely attacked in robbery

In the interview with Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, which I have linked to below, the one thing he said that surprised me most was when he was asked what surprised him the most when he came back to Dublin from Rome.

His answer: the level of violence in modern Irish society, especially in Dublin city.

Less than a fortnight ago, which was after that interview was broadcast, there was a man shot dead on a street within about 500 metres of the Archbishop's residence.

Nowadays in the Republic of Ireland there are about one or two murders per week. I don't have the exact statistics here, but in the early fifties, a murder was something which would have shocked the nation so much because they were so rare.

Now, I've just been watching Fr Benedict Groeschel on Fr Mitch Pacwa's programme on EWTN, and he said that his order, Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, are shortly to start operations in Limerick.

Fr. Benedict used the phrase "Stab City" to describe Limerick, a phrase which, to be honest, won't win him any friends in a city which is trying to shake off that unfortunate moniker - but trying without much success. My own gut feeling is that Limerick has "rough" areas and "nice" areas, just like virtually any other city, including Dublin. But you won't see headlines in the paper such as: "Man Walks Down Street And Arrives Home Safely".

For example, Detroit used to have a bad reputation, and earlier this year I spent three very enjoyable, and safe, days in Motor City.

The act of violence against a priest in rural Kerry is described here: but this has been "pushed off" the front pages by something even worse - the shooting dead of a mother of two young children, in what looks like a contract killing, in the large town of Swords, north of Dublin. Go to RTE's Homepage if you wish to read more.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

My Archbishop speaks!

RTE's "One To One" series kicked off last month featuring an interview with Archbishop Diarmuid Martin. It wasn't put up on the RTE website until about two or three weeks later; and it's quite hard to find on the website. So here is the link to the audio/video file.

Evangelisation in India!

Carole, an American girl based in Ireland, who produces the blog A Light To The Nations, is currently on a trip to India to spread the Gospel.

Go here for her story, which, as I write, is far from finished. Scroll down to 9th November and start there.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

This is worth checking out

The folks at ProLife Search have put together the "Essential Classics of Catholic Spirituality", which will be available shortly. ProLife Search is your alternative to Google; and the revenue generated goes to good causes.

Get a Free Sneak Preview of the Essential Classics of Catholic Spirituality collection