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Donal Walsh Memorial Mass 2019 – Live Life Foundation

img_0315-1Students from Scoil Mhuire traveled to Knock Shrine on Tuesday 9th May with Mr Breslin, Mr Kavanagh and Trish O’Neill to attend the sixth Anniversary Mass for Donal Walsh and to attend the Live Life Foundation Day for young people.

The guest speakers were Micheal O’Muircheartaigh, Anna Gearyy and Fr Philip Mulryne.

Micheal O’Muircheartaigh spoke to over three thousand teenagers about the importance of hope in their lives. If we have something to work towards, it gives us a focus, keeps us going, and gives us something to hope for. He told stories of sportsmen and women who kept trying, and failed in their search for success, but because they didn’t give up, they eventually achieved what they had dreamed of. He advised the young people that there is no shame in failing, as long as we keep trying, and learn from our mistakes, and told them to enjoy their journey in hope as they try to reach a higher place. Micheal shared his grandmother’s prayer, which is part of the folklore collection of Ireland in the 1930s, and begins… When you get up each morning, be enthusiastic about the day ahead. His parting words were, “Don’t anticipate bad things. Worry is not good for us. Don’t be afraid to fail. Learn  from your experience and move on.

Anna Geary, Camogie player and television personality,  who captained the Cork Camogie team and led them to four All Ireland wins spoke of the importance of doing anything we do to the very best of our ability. Anna told the young people not to worry about what other people were doing, but to think about what we want to do for ourselves. Follow your dreams, was her advice to them, find what brings you joy, and be the best person you can be. Failure is not a weakness, as long as we learn from it. Having the courage to try is what matters. Anna also spoke about the digital world and how social media is ruling our lives in so many ways. She advised the young people to disconnect in order to reconnect with life, and not to lose touch with the real world. Anna talked to them of the importance of having a support structure, and of supporting each other.. She also talked about the importance of being strong enough not to let another person’s bad behaviour or nastiness spoil the day for us.. “There are 86,400 seconds in each day,” she said. “Don’t let someone steal your whole day with a few seconds of nastiness.” Very good advice!

Fr Philip Mulryne begin with the observation that we each have our own journey, but the same themes and challenges come up for all of us. He talked about the Apparition of Our Lady at Knock, and how she gave no message to the people gathered there. In other Marian shrines around the world, Our Lady spoke to people, and left a verbal message with them. She appeared in Knock at a time when the people were living in despair, and in dire poverty and fear. Her presence with them in their suffering was enough, no words were needed. Philip also advised the young people to surround themselves with people who build them up and help them to achieve their dreams, and asked them to do the same for those around them. He shared some of his own story, about the success he enjoyed in the world of professional football, and how it wasn’t enough. He talked about breaking his leg during a match with Norwich City, and how his outlook changed. Sometimes, he told those listening, suffering or adversity brings out strength in us that we didn’t know was there. He told them that who we are is more important than what we do. Honesty, integrity and reliability are what matter in the end. Family, friends and faith give us hope. He told them not to settle for mediocrity, but to be the person God wants each of them to be.

All three speakers engaged the young people, who then explored the themes in various workshops and chats within the shrine area. Donal’s message of hope was strong for each of them in Knock. Be happy in your own way, and live life as fully as you can. There is always light for us.

The Mass was celebrated in the Basilica, and led by the Papal Nuncio, Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo. He brought his own joy to the celebration, and uplifted us all with his words. We were delighted to hear him speak of our neighbouring parish of Newbridge, when he told the young people about St Conleth, and the celebrations there of the 15oo anniversary of St Conleth.

A joy filled, happy, lifegiving day for all of us!

click here to see pictures…

Parish of Clane & Rathcoffey | Tel : 045 861 393 | Email : claneparish@eircom.net
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