Month: February 2015

Lenten Leaves Sacred Space

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My Lenten Promise

Have you decided what effort you are going to make for Lent this year?


Here are some ideas that may help you decide.

Our Lenten promises should try to focus on three things:

1. Praying – maybe a little extra than you do already

2. Sacrifice – maybe giving up or taking up something that is hard to do

3. Alms-giving – maybe putting money in your Trócaire box, or helping someone who does not have as much as you have.

There are leaf templates available in both churches. Please take one and write your Lenten promise anonymously on the leaf. This leaf can then be placed in the sacred space prepared in the church for Lent.


This template is available for you to print and prepare here.


Leaf Template

Further email from Sr Mary O’M re Christmas Crib Donations

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Dear Fr Carney and all of Balla/ Belcarra

Your most generous giving and a cheque of Euro 3,164.00 reached me yesterday, I cannot express my gratitude fully as demands are heavy on all at Christmas.  I join with all of you in prayer that the good Lord may be close to each one in whatever way you need it most  and may God Bless you abundantly in this New Year.

In the Linkedin I received today, I see that the new Archbishop of Cashel and Emily  urges people to “open their eyes to the possibility of human  …..”  A donation such as yours will go a long way to assisting some victims, preventing others going and create general Awareness of this new form of slavery in our midst, especially in Kenya.  No words can describe how rampant it is here and the multiple ways people are sucked into it without being aware of what is happening to them.

Story 1.  Just before Christmas, I assisted a 25 year old woman to see a Clinical Psychologist, she came back from Saudi 5th December.  She only knew her name was Joyce but here people have middle and last names and she did not know these at all.  I facilitated her travel to her rural home with her aunt.  Both her parents were killed in a road accident in August 2012.  So, please keep her in your prayers too, she has a lot of trauma to deal with in her young life.

Story 2.  In June last year, I assisted a young mother of two to find refuge after she climbed down/ to escape from a ‘holding house’ about to be trafficked in a few days to Saudi.   George and I reported it to police and they raided the ‘house’ 3 weeks later when the ‘fuss had died down’    Next day I assisted Anna to return to her rural home 3 kms from the Ugandan border.

A very favorable upshot of that was on 5th February, 2015,  the OCS  (top rank) invited the whole station of 25 officers to attend a 2 hour interactive session on ‘Awareness of HT’ (given by George and I).  Plus he also opened it to the Local Administration of the District Officer who came with 14 Chiefs and 28 sub-chiefs + others in an area the size almost of Co. Mayo.

Every good wish and Blessings.

Mary O’ Malley, MMM

Ash Wednesday February 18th 2015

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The Meaning of Lent


The English word ‘Lent’ comes from the Anglo-Saxon word Lencten, meaning ‘Spring’. In other languages the word comes from the Latin, Quadragesima – a period of 40 days.  In the Christian tradition the forty days is understood to refer to a time of intense prayer and preparation; we remember the biblical stories of Noah and the flood of 40 days, the forty years the Israelites spent wandering in the wilderness and Christ’s forty day fast in the desert in preparation for his earthly ministry.


Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the Season of Lent. It is a season of penance, reflection, and fasting which prepares us for Christ’s Resurrection on Easter Sunday.


Mass in St Cronan’s (Balla) on Wednesday at 7 and 10 am

and in St Anne’s (Belcarra) at 7.30 pm


The 7 am Mass will be celebrated weekly

on Wednesdays during Lent (alternating between churches)

Why not make the effort to attend?

Temperance Sunday February 15th

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Fr Mathew’s Prayer

Compassionate Lord and Saviour,
you inspired the Capuchin Friar Theobold Mathew to show your compassionate face to those addicted and burdened by the abuse of alcohol or addicted behavior, and to promote temperance.

May we today, continue to serve our brothers and sisters with love and joy, And to foster balance, and moderation in our life styles with the help of God.

So, we pray, “here goes in the name of God.”

Read more about Temperance Sunday here

World Day of the Sick 2015

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Mass for the Sick will be celebrated in St Cronan’s Church, Balla

at 10 am on Wednesday, February 11th.

The 23rd World Day of the Sick will be celebrated on Wednesday 11 February, the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes. The World Day of the Sick is an initiative which was started by Pope John Paul II in 1992.  Pope Benedict and Pope Francis have continued this special World Day – an occasion during which the whole Church bears witness with special concern to the tender mercy and love of God towards all who suffer. It is a time to pause and be prayerfully in solidarity with those who are sick and with all who care for the sick.

The theme for the 2015 World Day of the Sick is “I was eyes to the blind, and feet to the lame” (Job 29:15).

In his message for this year’s World Day of the Sick Pope Francis says: “Today too, how many Christians show, not by their words but by lives rooted in a genuine faith, that they are “eyes to the blind” and “feet to the lame”! They are close to the sick in need of constant care and help in washing, dressing and eating. This service, especially when it is protracted, can become tiring and burdensome. It is relatively easy to help someone for a few days but it is difficult to look after a person for months or even years, in some cases when he or she is no longer capable of expressing gratitude. And yet, what a great path of sanctification this is! In those difficult moments we can rely in a special way on the closeness of the Lord, and we become a special means of support for the Church’s mission.”

Taken from