Ireland will host its first ever beatification ceremony this weekend, when Fr John Sullivan SJ will be named Blessed on May 13. (Up until the papacy of Benedict XVI beatifications tended to take place in Rome and the Pope presided over them.) Pope Francis will be represented by Cardinal Angelo Amato, Prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of...

It’s been just over a year since the US-based Hilton Foundation announced it was awarding a grant of $290,000 (€268,000) to Vocations Ireland, and Margaret Cartwright, director of the organisation, has had her hands full in the meantime.Explaining that the umbrella group that supports vocations directors from Ireland’s religious...

Ireland has lagged behind other countries in the promotion of priestly vocations for several years, according to Waterford and Lismore’s Bishop Phonsie Cullinan, chairman of the Irish bishops’ Council for Vocations, but that’s set to change this month with the establishment of the country’s national vocations office. ...

Casey SchmauderSitting down to a pot of tea and a blueberry muffin, Shane O’Doherty says, “I work at a shelter just around the corner, so this is where I come prior to starting my 12-hour night shift.”Shane has moved through numerous jobs over the years. He worked in an IT department in Sweden before returning to Ireland and...

Mary McCarthy, Eilis Costelloe and Kathleen Maher Following an invitation from the Ossory Adult Faith Development team seeking volunteers for the Year of Mercy to assist pilgrims in Rome last year, we decided to take up the challenge and apply. We logged on to the pilgrims website to check out the requirements, amongst which were a...

“We might not have government but we still have the law, which is pretty important for policing, so all is not lost”, deadpans George Hamilton, Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland in his comfortable if not overly-spacious office at Police HQ in the Knock area of east Belfast, just before Easter.Mr Hamilton (49), a...

The first thing that strikes you about Sr Majella McCarron, a pioneering advocate for justice and peace within her congregation, is that she is no shrinking violet.Sr Majella, a sprightly, feisty 77-year-old who hails from Derrylin, Co. Fermanagh, is happy to talk for hours about her eventful 57 year-long ministry in the Missionary Sisters of Our...

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