Falling birth-rates and the death of Europe

By Fr Tomas Walsh Many countries in Europe have entered, or will shortly enter, what is known as a ‘demographic winter’ – a situation where the fertility rate falls to 1.3 births or lower. [the replacement level is 2.1, – i.e every woman should have on average...

The deep joy of our faith

By Fr John Keane When I first arrived in Ecuador to begin my life on mission I was shocked at the level of poverty there.  I was appointed to the very large parish of the Good Shepherd two hours west of Guaraquil.  I was numb as I drove around the parish for...

Our Special friends

By Kathy Sinnott On a crowded train home to Cork recently I was sitting with three teenagers. They were talking about their names and mentioned that they had another name, a confirmation name.  One of the girls who was not Irish asked what that was.  “It’s a...

The Holy Souls – Our Duty of Charity

By Fr Philip Kemmy During the month of November we are encouraged to pray for our deceased loved ones.  But we would do well not to confine our care and concern for them to that one month in the year.  St. Francis de Sales lamented how quickly we neglect our...

The rich young man

By Fr Brian McCarthy In this article we look at one passage of St Mark’s Gospel, his encounter with the rich young man (Mark 10:17-27), as an example of how to read the New Testament. I can’t include the passage itself here because of shortage of space, so I suggest...

The North American Martyrs

By Fr Shane Sullivan Singleness of purpose. So might someone paraphrase the early Jesuit spirit. Everything was put at the disposal of the Jesuit’s singular purpose as laid out in the Spiritual Exercises’ First Principle and Foundation: “to praise, reverence, and...

The First Saturdays

Our Lady promises to assist at the hour of their death those who help her in this devotion.  The practice of the First Saturday devotion was requested by Our Lady of Fatima in 1917.  She said to Lucia, the oldest of the three children: “I shall come to ask . . . that...

Mary – A very special Mother

By Fr John Keane There are twenty one in my friend Joe’s family, he has twenty brothers and sisters.  It is very difficult to keep tabs on them to know where they all are at any time.  When he comes home to his dear Mam and asks her where is Eileen today she...

The Need for Repentance

By Fr Brian McKevitt (669 words) The German Protestant pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who died in Auschwitz in 1945, wrote a lot about what he called “cheap grace”. He was fiercely opposed to it.  “Cheap grace,” he wrote, “is the deadly...