Monday, 26 September 2016

Retreat at l'Arche

Off today until Friday on a retreat directed by Jean Vanier at l'Arche in Trosly.
Looking forward to this. I know I am fortunate to have this opportunity.

St Joseph's Church had a most enjoyable Information Day yesterday. Big number
of people worked hard to provide information and great food to big number of people
who came along.

Will resume posts when the retreat is over.           A.T.

Wednesday, 21 September 2016

Late Summer Sunshine

Lovely sunny day. Got for a swim today in the local public pool. It is a great way to get refreshed. 
This evening had a meeting with Parents of First Communion students of Marymount School.
Such meetings are great, just listening to the questions and comments of the parents.
The bike ride to and from school is also good. Next week I will make a retreat with a group of priests at l'Arche, Trosly, under the guidance of Jean Vanier. Every second year priests from all over Ireland come to France for this retreat. 

I'll have plenty to think and pray about:.
  • The plight of people, especially children, in Aleppo, Syria
  • End to conflicts and wars that no longer make headlines
  • Safety of all people from acts of terrorism
  • Dialogue, action and prayer to continue the Assisi gathering of Pope Francis and Religious leaders
  • Pray for priests struggling with following church teachings and pray for enlightenment
  • Pray for everyone and especially for the wonderful parishioners of St Joseph's, Paris.
  • Pray for a deep conversion in my own life.
  • Please pray for me as I enter into this week of grace.
Will be back soon again,           A.T.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Paris Church Alert

Saturday, 17 September, in the afternoon there was an alert at a Church near Chatlet in the centre of Paris. Thank God, it turned out to be a false alarm. It is always a worry, especially at weekends and the prayers and efforts are to keep all people safe as they go about their lives. 

Life is never simple. On a very minor level in comparison to the above, the website has been showing a strange opening page. The explanation is that a company in America holds the licence for the domain and every five years a payment must by made to them by St Joseph's Church. We did not get the reminder that this licence was due to expire as since the previous payment, our email address had changed. Efforts were made late into Saturday night to remedy this and will continue today. A wonderful friend of St Joseph's has built this website and keeps it going. Good work is also done on a daily basis from the parish office.

Now off to see the 200 young people who on Sundays have class at St Joseph's Church to prepare for 1st Reconciliation, 1st Communion, and Confirmation.

My heart will be in Croke Park this afternoon as Dublin, I hope, will life the Sam Maguire Cup for the second year in a row. How I would love to be there!  A.T.

Friday, 16 September 2016


I love Fridays. It is always a busy day. The Bulletin for the parish needs to be printed and put in the church; there is Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in Marymount School in the afternoon. This evening I am invited to a reception in the Embassy of Ireland for the opening of a conference on "Paris, Capital of Irish Culture". Feeling good having cycled to school a few times and got to the swimming pool twice this week. Settling back into life here in Paris after some doubts over the summer about whether I would be appointed again by my superiors. Other bits and pieces I would like to write about, but I must go now. Thanks to anyone who reads this blog. Let me know what you think: It would be great to hear from you.                                                  A.T.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows

15th September is the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows. It is a feast of the church and a day of special prayer and devotion in the Passionist Congregation to which I belong.

There are seven sorrows of Mary:

  1. Simeon's Prophecy about the Sword of Sorrow (Luke 2:34-35)
  2. The Flight of Mary, Joseph and Jesus into Egypt (Matthew 2:13)
  3. The Loss of the Child Jesus in the Temple (Luke 2:43-45)
  4. Mary Meets Jesus on the Way to Calvary (Luke 23:26)
  5. Jesus dies on the Cross (John 19:25)
  6. Mary Receives the Body of Jesus into Her Arms (Matthew 27:57)
  7. The Body of Jesus is Placed in the Tomb (John 19:40)
God's blessing on you.                                                                                                 A.T.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

September 2016

I feel bad about my neglect of this blog - I see it was in May that I was last in contact by means of the blog. Mea culpa!

I promise to try to do better in the months ahead. In June the Passionists in Ireland held a four yearly meeting (called a Chapter). It was held in a beautiful place near Portlarington, Co. Laois. The meeting lasted from Monday to Friday. This marked the end of my four years as assistant provincial superior (2012-2016). I was glad to offer these years of service to the Passionists. The only downside was that every 4 to 6 weeks, it meant attending a meeting either in Dublin or in Belfast. This usually involved being on the RERA train at 5.15 a.m. and not getting back to St Joseph's until near midnight. Now that is over as a new team of superiors was elected in June this year. I wish them well.

I'm back in St Joseph's, Paris for another four years (D.V.). Therein lies a saga that I will share with you in a future post. Or, if you go to and click on Reflection 24th Sunday, you can read what I shared last week in the Parish Bulletin. Also, if you go to St Joseph's Church Facebook page you will also find a link to this reflection.

Part of my delight in being back is meeting again the many friends I have made here over the past eight years. Another lovely aspect is that I am still chaplain to Marymount School, Paris in Neuilly-sur-Seine. Today, Wednesday 14 September, the opening Mass was celebrated in the school. Today is the Feast of the Holy Cross and it was wonderful to hear the thoughts of the students during the dialogue homily. They are simply great. 

The weather is wonderful at present - very Irish to comment on the weather! I've become a regular in our wonderful local swimming pool. Because of my age, the kind people in the local 'Maire' (town hall) give me a three month membership for €19. I try to get to the pool at least twice each week. Also, to get to Marymount School I cycle using the city bicycles, Velib. It is a great service and I am carelful to wear my helmet each time.

My weeks home in August were great. Bray is still looking good and I had a lovely weekend in Ballycastle, Co. Antrim. I was also pleased to baptise a baby called Aidan in Belfast in early August. A sad moment was to say goodbye to a great human being who died, Bishop Edward Daly of Derry. It was a privilege to be present at his funeral in St Eugene's Cathedral to pay tribute to such a great peace builder and a great carer in latter years at the Foyle Hospice.

This is a start with the Blog again and if you have a comment to make, I would love to hear from you. Or, if you would like to email me, please do so -
A bientot. A.T.