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The Irish Benedictines: A history

A collection of historical essays by professional historians, some of them themselves Benedictines, recording how Irish men and women have responded to the Rule of St Benedict over a period of 1400 years as a way to seek and find God.  


The Irish in the Crimean War

John Davis recalls the best known battle of the Crimean War, the 25-minute Charge of the Light Brigade down the wrong valley at Balaclava 150 years ago. Of its 673 horesmen, 114 were Irish and its leaders had interesting Irish connections.


Observe the rustling leaves: the Church and world of the future

For the eighth centenary of the town of Callan, Co. Kilkenny, Jim O’Halloran SDB addresses his fellow Callan-ites on the topic of “The Church and the World of the Future”.


James Joyce and the Jesuits: a sort of homecoming

Jesuit priest Bruce Bradley looks at the complicated relationship between James Joyce and his educational mentors.


The Irish Matryoshka: A history of Irish monks in medieval Europe

In a series of six monographs, James J. Harkins explores the historical dimensions of the coming of Christianity to Ireland and its subsequent spread to Scotland and the European continent. Using German and French sources he has interesting insights and comments on what the Irish missionaries did well and not so well.


The lion of the West: Archbishop John McHale

John McHale was among the first Irish bishops since the Reformation to have been educated in Ireland. As a fearless critic of British mismanagement of Ireland during the Great Famine, he was attacked by the British press but loved by the Irish people.


A light undimmed: the story of the Convent of Our Lady of Bom Sucesso Lisbon 1639 to 2000

Honor McCabe OP has written an excellent and comprehensive history of work of the Irish Dominican Sisters in Portugal. The chapter presented here tells how Fr Dominic O’Daly OP, after setting up a college in Lisbon for the education of young Irish men for the priesthood, successfully negotiated founding this convent for the education of young Irish


Distinguishing antizionism from antisemitism

Michael Prior CM argues that to be opposed to exclusivist, oppressive, imperialistic Zionism is not to be antisemitic but to be in favour of making a better moral future for all the peoples in the troubled region of the Holy Land.


Faith of our forefathers

Polish immigration to Ireland has created a communion between Polish and Irish Catholics. How different is the history of their faith, the culture and practise of their faith, and what can they learn from each other? asks Jacek Poznanski SJ.


In the beginning was the Word: Chester Beatty Library

Mark Harkin takes a look at the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin’s famous repository of the rare and wonderful. Those with an eye to the Christian past will not be disappointed with the fascinating Sacred Traditions permanent exhibition.


Ireland’s round towers

The survival of so many Irish round towers is a tribute to the monks who built them, writes Paul Ross. Along with the harp and the shamrock, the round tower has almost become a symbol of Ireland. From Armoy in north Antrim to Aghadoe outside Killarney, there are sixty-five of these slender and tapering round


The scourge of conscription

Henry Peel OP describes the conscription crisis in Ireland in 1918, how the Irish hierarchy’s firm opposition helped to end the British government’s attempt to extend the draft to Ireland.


O’Connell’s last bequest

Henry Peel OP describes the death and funeral of Daniel O’Connell. After an extraordinary life working for justice and freedom, O’Connell died on his way to Rome in May, 1847.


The Vatican Pimpernel

Mary Gaffney recalls the life of Msgr. Hugh O’Flaherty, the Irish priest who became known as the ‘Vatican Pimpernel’ for his remarkable work in saving thousands of Jews and Allied soldiers from the hands of the Nazis.


Breaching educational barriers

Henry Peel OP surveys the story of catholics and education in Ireland at the end of the eighteenth century and early nineteenth century, a period during which anti-catholic penal legislation was on its last legs.

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