Sean Walsh

I live in Dublin, Ireland. Sometimes. Most times I live in my head, quite unaware of my surroundings – if you know what I mean… If you succeed in tracking Sean Walsh, please let me know, ok? I've been searching for him for years…

Editor Goes Walkabout

Published on Monday 10th June 2013 by Sean Walsh

Noon. Tuesday, October 23… I clear out the contents of the drawer in the Sacristy marked ‘Newsletter’ and move back into a Church that is now a haven. The peace is almost tangible. Muted music enhances the tranquility. Fresh flowers adorn the newly-dressed altars. Candles flame and splutter. All is swept, clean, polished…

A lone suppliant stands before the statue of the Madonna, her lips moving in silent, earnest prayer. In the Adoration chapel two, three parishioners in quiet worship. An elder kneels at the back, a rosary beads entwined in gnarled fingers… nods as I pass by.

In the grounds, the air is fresh, liquid, balmy – an Autumn day not far removed from Summer. The sun shines unhindered from a cloudless sky as I move downhill. And to my right, I glimpse the girls of Corpus Christi at play in their school yard… and pause a while to listen to their carefree cries and laughter. The innocents who know little – care less – about the world they are growing up in…

Across and down Ferguson Road… hard by the park where people saunter, sit, chat… making the most of the fine spell… And so into Millmount Avenue and the terraced houses that still cling to a Joycean age… And the thought occurs to me:  through every letter-box along the way a copy of this Newsletter is slotted, month by month, thanks to some unknown, volunteer parishioner…

I turn back into Milbourne Avenue, pass the Library and the Credit Union, and as I near the Drumcondra Road the cries and laughter of boys at play grow ever louder: the pupils of St Patrick’s National have crowded into the school yard and are making the most of their break. Why, I can even hear them above the incessant hum and growl of traffic on the main road.

I turn and head north, uphill. ‘Hard to believe that but a hundred miles away – give or take – in North Belfast, the children of Holy Cross are being terrified, day after day, going to, coming from, school. They are the innocent victims of a blatant, totally inexcusable, sectarian hatred.

And I recall our parish priest, Fr Gerry Threadgold, pausing at Mass, day after day, Sunday after Sunday, to pray – with obvious and heartfelt emotion – for Peace in Northern Ireland… Amen to that.

– Corpus Christi Newsletter, Nov, 2001.

                        (Sean Walsh)

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