The Word on the Week
April 13, 2009

Poisoned Chalice

Holy week brings with it many depictions of Christ’s passion but few capture it’s essence better than this creation of Kiefer entitled “can you drink the cup?”. The chalice, normally a thing of beauty, is seen to be sprouting thorns. The thorns remind us of those platted by the Roman soldiers to form Christ’s crown. […]

April 4, 2009

Abolition of Religion

While the great and the good of the G20 nations were gathering in London to save the world from bankruptcy here in Dublin we were holding a conference to extol the virtues of religion. The underlying contention was that religion (the variety we have in Ireland) is good for you. An impressive amount of research […]

March 29, 2009

Jade Goody

Television has the ability to be creative when you least expect it. Indeed the “Big Brother” programme is compelling viewing for many simply because the unexpected may happen! It manages to so bond its viewers to the behaviour of the houseguests that the daily papers have little to write about but much to photograph. The […]

March 23, 2009

Josef Fritzl

Elizabeth Fritzl has had a hard life. She ran away 30 years ago, when she was 12, to escape her father’s sexual abuse and was brought back home by the Austrian police. Her father, Josef, was a friend of the Major of Amstetten, a respected man in a community that had chosen to forget his […]

March 8, 2009

Voice of Conscience

Conscience has sometimes been described as the voice of God in the soul of man.   It is God’s ally.   It checks the extremes of behaviour.   A working conscience has saved many a red face. But what happens when it has been disabled?  What happens when its voice has been so effectively silenced that a person […]

February 14, 2009

Bank Robbers

In former times bank robberies were conducted from outside the bank. The attackers were easily identifiable by their clothing and weapons. Now it seems that robbers can also come from the inside, be well dressed and have their password to the computer system! In fact our banking system seems to have supported quite a few […]

February 7, 2009

Cowen the Captain

The speech this week to the Dublin Chamber of Commerce given by our Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, has been hailed as the first signs of leadership since the recession began. One journalist likened it to Pilot Chesley Sullenberger’s crash landing of US Airways Airbus A320 Flight 1549 on the Hudson River on the 15th January. The […]

January 31, 2009

St Brigid

With the 1st February, the Celtic feast day of Imbolc is upon us. The light is returning and the snowdrops are blooming. Let us escape from the current financial crises and turn our thoughts to St Brigid whose day it is. It is interesting that there seems to have been a Brigit (the old spelling) […]

January 24, 2009


This is the Saviour of the world said the shop assistant referring to Obama as the radio brought the Presidential inauguration in Washington into the local chemist’s shop. For a moment I found myself agreeing! Such has been the momentum generated by the rhetoric and the welcome distraction it afforded from the chill economic winds […]

January 17, 2009

Millstones and Mercy Again

It is easier, Jesus said, for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God could be updated and how hard, we respond, for the Religious to show humility to the Laity. The rich? They have got it made. Their security is in […]

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