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OPHELIA

 The mission of Loving Sister Earth is to pray and labour for Universal Harmony, that all may live in a relationship of mutual respect. A respect for the delicate balance within creation is vital for our survival at this time. To ignore this is to open the door to imbalance and lack of harmony. In Ireland Ophelia has just visited us and left behind a frightening message, spelt out in its trail of destruction. Ophelia is warning us of our new future; we must read the signs of the times and radically change the ways we live. But how to do this?

 

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Ireland’s Holy Wells County-by-County

Ireland’s National Monuments Service documents the early nineteenth century-locations of over 2900 holy wells. After almost two centuries, most counties retain several dozen well sites and larger ones like Cork, Galway and Clare have hundreds. Even the most populated and urbanized County Dublin has nearly 80. Yet, these sacred and historic sites are inconsistently documented across the country. Fewer than a dozen counties have archaeological inventories of the late twentieth-century locations of holy well sites and only four have county-wide surveys of sites and samplings of associated folklore and tradition.

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National Holy Wells Day at Catherine McAuley Nursing Home

At the instigation of Sr Liz McCarthy who is a resident of the Catherine McAuley Nursing Home at Beaumont in Dublin a ritual was performed by the residents and staff on National Holy Wells Day.

A member of the staff created a “well” for the occasion. The residents and staff processed from the chapel and gathered around the well where the priest blessed it and together the group then prayed for the protection of water.

Liz is pictured at the nursing home with their well.

 

 

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Miriam Gormally met with Elaine O’Leary and Helen Grealy to find our more about the day. She began by asking Helen about the historical devotion Irish people have had to their wells. Click here to listen to interview

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Gathering at Tobar Na Molt….Wethers’ Well,

Tubrid, near Ardfert, Co. Kerry

1st National Holy Wells Day, 18 June 2017

2nd Anniversary of Laudato Si’ On Care for Our Common Home.

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St. Colmcille’s Well

 

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Out and About: St. Cunlan’s Well, Youghalarra

St. Cunlan’s Well, Youghalarra is tucked away in the beautiful countryside overlooking the shores of Lough Derg. The well consists of a natural spring which flows into an open pond. It has been enclosed by a dry-stone wall and covered by a flat slab of slate which has been partially cut to allow easy access to the water. Several small wooden crosses have been inserted into the top wall. There is a stone altar to the rear with a wooden statue representing St. Cunlan.

 

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An Tobar: A Two-Day Workshop on

Holy Wells & Sacred Springs

26 & 27 June, 2017, Waterford, Ireland

 

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Killimer

Out and about: Molougha, Birthplace of St. Senan.

Tradition holds that St Patrick prophesied the birth of Senan.  It is said that Patrick was on the other side of the Shannon Estuary when some people from Corca Baiscinn came to ask him to cross over into Clare.  Patrick declined saying that God would raise up a great saint in Clare, named Senan who would be ‘a candle of God’s household.’   Whatever about the truth of this prophecy, in 488, Senan, bishop, founder and abbot of the monastery of Inis Cathaigh was born in Molougha, in Killimer parish.   His parents were named Erean and Comgella.

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Ballynacally

Out and About:   St Martin’s Well

St. Martin’s Shrine and Blessed Well is just to the west of the bridge in Ballynacally Village and can be reached easily by the path from the road in just minutes.  The Well is dedicated to St Martin of Tours, a saint who is said to have greatly influenced both St Patrick and St Senan. The Shrine, hollowed in a rocky area on the brink of a gently flowing stream, is sheltered by cypress trees and flowering shrubs.  It is a place of great peace and also a place of prayer.  Only the murmur of the waters from the nearby river and an occasional gust of wind through the trees disturb the silence.

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Visit to St Patricks Well by Columba Community

 Amidst the various parades around the country on St Patricks the Columba Community of Prayer and Reconciliation went on pilgrimage to the hill of Grianán Aileach.  Prince Eoghan, after whom Inishowen is named was baptised at An Grianán by St Patrick in 450AD.  A well known as St Patrick’s Well is situated between the two outer banks on the south side of the hill.  The well is said to have healing powers.

 

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Spiritual Spring on Tap

As an island nation we are reminded on a regular basis of the strength and omnipotence of water. We can admire its power in the crashing waves which lash our coastline, shaping the very detail of our geography. At the same time we struggle against the effects of its incessant presence as farmers try to till the soggy land or floods threaten homes and livelihoods or we simply feel the need to scramble abroad for a week of sunshine away from the rain.

 

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On Thursday 23rd February 2017 we were privileged at a Thornhill College to receive a visit from Sister Helen and Elaine O’Leary to speak to us about their work as part of the group “Loving Sister Earth.” Both Sister Helen and Elaine shared with a group of our students, Miss Hamilton (Principal) and Mr McSorley (Head of Geography), the vision of their mission, to foster prayer for the care of our common home rooted in the ground and served by our people. Their work is a beautiful fusion of care of the earth, its environments and inhabitants and the deep sense of spirituality, healing and well-being which we can all gain from this connection with each other and the earth.

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There are around 3,000 Holy Wells in Ireland. Since early Christian times these have been seen as places of prayer and healing
National Holy Wells Day
invites you
To become aware of how precious water is
Visit a local Holy Well and pray for the protection of water
Plan with others how you can protect the water in your area

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Gathering at St. Brigids Well in Derryra, Ballyduff, Co Kerry on the eve of St Brigid’s Day at 5pm

Having met and parked near the nearby Cashen river we now approached the well slowly to the sound of a bodhrán.

One of us had placed beautiful lanterns and candles around the well and a St. Brigid’s cross.

Twelve of us had gathered, and just before we started to walk we were reminded of the sacredness of the place we were about to enter…sacred for our ancestors who had also come here to pray and do the rounds.

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What is the Spirit saying to the Churches?

Helen Grealy

‘What is the Spirit saying to the churches’ is an oft repeated expression in the Book of Revelation.  After 2000 years of Christianity, it is a very apt question for us today. At this early stage of the third millennium our Church establishments are in crisis.  Could it be that the life and teaching, death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ is no longer life-giving in the 21st century?  I doubt it.  While Jesus does not walk this earth in person, he has sent us his Spirit to be with us for all time.  We have seen throughout the centuries that people have recognised and responded to this Spirit.  Prophets, saints and mystics have always been with us, some well known, and others not so.  This selfsame Spirit of God is still with us today, I sense, in a very powerful way.

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