"I made the decision to be a priest and to stay a priest. I can look back on life and say that anything I have done, I have done for the right reasons – the decision may be right or wrong, but I did the best I could to make a right decision.”
This path of reconciliation is a summons to discover in the depths of our heart the power of forgiveness and the capacity to acknowledge one another as brothers and sisters, says Pope Francis.
“There are people who object to these community centres being owned by the Church, in the same way as there are people who object to the fact that so many schools are church-owned,” said Fr Oliver O’Reilly.
"The Priests Charitable Trust has been able to assist several charitable causes and, as long as we sing, will continue to do so," say Frs Eugene O'Hagan, Martin O’Hagan and David Delargy.
"You can find images of his murder in churches across Latin Christendom, from Germany and Spain, to Italy and Norway. Becket was, and remains, a truly European saint," says Lloyd de Beer of the British Museum.
The gallery stated that the sharing of 12 seasonal artworks was “a National Gallery of Ireland advent calendar of sorts.” Each day a painting was chosen from the national collection and highlighted on social media such as Facebook.
In his Christmas homily, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin says Christmas is a moment when our faith emerges, even if we have drifted away from regular practice of that faith.
“I can’t understand why people would choose to attack Greta Thunberg. She is passionate about what she believes; she is only a young girl and she is speaking prophetically to the world and what do we do – we attack her. We attack her message."
While we acknowledge that points of difference obviously remain, the goal of restoring devolution remains within reach – Ireland’s church leaders.
“I wish each and every one of you a peaceful and happy Christmas and a new year of hope and possibility,” says President Michael D. Higgins.
“It is very disappointing when media agendas succeed in trampling over and insulting faith practice," - Martin Long, Director of the CCO.
“A new language of racism, mostly opportunistic, understated, but no less toxic, has emerged in our public and political discourse, stoking hostility towards the ‘other’ and testing our own sense of hospitality for the first time,” warned Fr Michael Mullaney.
My thoughts turn to families in our own diocese who have welcomed the birth of a child during this past year and to those who are expecting a baby in the near future – Bishop Kevin Doran.
For the eighth year running, ACN is providing Christmas parcels for displaced children, including warm clothes, shoes, toys, devotional items and other essentials.
“Christians are called to make the connection between faith and earth, between theology and ecology, constructing common cause with those who challenge confinement and usher in freedom. This is where we will find Jesus Christ today” – Archbishop Michael Jackson.
In a statement issued on Tuesday 17 December 2019 the bishops state that all Christians and people of good will are obliged in conscience not to cooperate formally in abortion services, “even if permitted by civil legislation”.
Dioceses can no longer “quote the pontifical secret to avoid either cooperating or sharing with the authorities” Archbishop Charles Scicluna warns.
Bishops urged Christians to stand and work together to show solidarity and pastoral outreach and to give hope to people, assuring them that they do not have to face this problem of homelessness alone.
Rector and parish administrator of St Joseph’s in Dundalk, Fr Noel Kehoe CSsR, described the new initiative as “an exciting new tool in our mission to preach plentiful redemption.”