I never suffer from the ‘Monday Morning Blues’, but last Monday I definitely got out of the wrong side of the bed and probably should have actually stayed between the sheets and ignored the alarm when it went off just after 7.30 am! I woke up with a sore throat, a slightly fuzzy head, and a rattling cough. As if that wasn’t bad enough, the shower was cold, the oil boiler wasn’t working and the lad who told me two months ago that he would come and fix both the shower and the boiler won’t answer my calls and seems to have vanished off the face of the earth!
However, one thing my late mother always taught me was that there is someone, somewhere, always worse off than you and when I went downstairs and turned on the TV last Monday I realised straight away she was right…
Hurricane Dorian was ripping the Northern Bahamas asunder, with record winds tearing down power lines, whipping roofs off homes and other buildings, turning cars upside down, and generally wreaking unimaginable havoc on the local population. Hundreds of people were left homeless, and were forced to relocate to schools, churches, and other shelters.
Closer to home and we there was a huge fire in a multi-storey carpark in Cork which destroyed at least sixty cars, and which left hundreds more abandoned in the gutted remains of the building. Many of the cars have to be removed individually by special crane, but obviously nothing can happen until the building is examined and declared safe.
On top of all that we had news of yet another mass shooting in America, when for the second time in four weeks, the state of Texas was rocked by the brutal murder of seven people with another twenty-two injured, including a toddler who was shot in the face. It all started after police pulled the shooter over for not using his car’s indicator. Whatever was going on, his response was to open fire on the policemen, hijack a postal van, and shoot indiscriminately at passers-by, until he himself was shot dead outside a cinema complex in the town of Odessa.
Suddenly my sore throat seemed less annoying, my cough and my fuzzy head were much better and even the boiler and cold shower weren’t as big a problem as before. Mind you, I am still trying to contact my plumber who’s still ignoring my calls, so there’s no guarantee that tomorrow I won’t be back to square one.
Church acknowledges Marion’s healing
Changing subjects, I have often told you that one of my favourite places anywhere in the world is Knock Shrine, and in truth, it has nothing to do with religion as such, but more to do with the peace, tranquility and serenity that just seems surround the place.
However, some years ago, on a visit to the shrine, I bought a book entitled ‘I was cured at Knock’ by Athlone’s Marion Carroll. In her book, Ms. Carroll told of a visit she made to Knock, in September 1989, at a time when she was wheelchair bound, incontinent, blind in one eye, and partially blind in the other, and with her muscles wasted and her speech and throat badly affected. Against medical advice, she attended the Anointing of the Sick in the Basilica, and, after receiving a blessing, walked pain-free from her stretcher!
Well, yesterday for the first time, the Church acknowledged that the seriously ill woman had been healed in Knock, and while falling short of declaring it a miracle, did say that it ‘defied medical explanation’. As with most church matters it took a while - 30 years to acknowledge that the healing took place – but I think it’s a very welcome development.
The Anointing of the Sick takes place each day during the pilgrimage season at 12 pm and 3 pm Mass, and many people go there to pray for themselves and sick friends and relations.
There is obviously no guarantee that anyone will ever again be cured, but the very fact that the Church has acknowledged that Ms. Carroll was will give hope to many more sick people, encouraging them to travel to Knock, and that can only be a good thing.
Castlerea’s golden girl returns from Madrid
What about the performance of Castlerea’s Aoife O’Rourke, who became the first Irish female boxer since world champion Katie Taylor to win an Elite European Championship gold medal when she overcame Poland’s Elzebieta Wojcik in the middleweight final in Madrid last Saturday evening. It is a monumental achievement for the Castlerea Boxing Club member, and please God she will get to the Olympics in Tokyo in 2020, continue in Katie’s steps and bring home another gold medal!
Minor mishap and major omission!
Speaking of bad Mondays, I would think that the Galway minor footballers, who lost Sunday’s All-Ireland final in extra-time after going a goal ahead with only a couple of seconds left in normal time, endured a pretty bad one! On the other hand, the Galway part of me was wondering if the senior final could go to a replay then why not the minor one?
Devin Toner, whose omission from the Rugby World Cup squad is bewildering, and Kieran Marmion, whose omission, while not as bewildering but still unexpected, must also have experienced the Monday Morning Blues and rightly so!
When all things are considered, I, and most of my readers (I hope) really have very little to feel ‘blue’ about!
The ‘ups and downs’ of being Pope!
Sticking with Church matters, and over in Rome on Sunday the Pope was late for his regular Sunday morning audience after he was trapped in a lift. The Pontiff was left there for 25 minutes before firefighters rescued him, allowing him to keep his Sunday appointment.
One of many people’s biggest fears is getting stuck in a lift, but the 82-year-old Pontiff didn’t let it get him too down, and he asked for a round of applause for the firefighters before carrying on with his duties, albeit a little late.
Finally for this week…
It’s almost time for our annual fundraising dance for the Lourdes Invalid Fund and Cancer Care West. We will be hitting the road very soon and calling door to door with our tickets, looking for your support for the sixteenth year in a row. The dance, with music by the very popular Lancers is on in Dowd’s, Glinsk, on Saturday, October 12th and as usual, we look forward to your ever-generous support.
Till next week, Bye for now!