At a time in history when we look to commemorate our shared histories on this island, we are now looking at an upsurge of violence in loyalist enclaves, predominately in Belfast and Derry.
Over the past weeks, the word-cluster “CEO of the HSE” has been repeated so often in the media that it has begun ringing in my ears like a mantra. This morning, I tested the expression on my French husband. As expected, he had no idea to whom or to what it referred.
One of the miraculous positives of the last 11 months is that Dublin Bus commuters and drivers alike have finally mastered the dark continental art of operating and using the centre doors on buses.
The letter from James Hardy (‘Believers are assured of God’s presence everywhere‘, Letters, March 31) is the latest in a line of letters published by you during this pandemic, all saying essentially the same thing – that church attendance is not that important, that God is ever-present to us as individuals and that this should suffice.
The issue of the reunification of Ireland arises yet again. Historically prior to the Anglo-Norman ‘settling’ of Ireland the clans were usually warring with each other, stealing cattle, wives, etc, etc, resulting in poetry, sagas and stories.
With the advent of Pope Francis and his much-publicised response of “Who am I to judge?” to questions about his attitude to gay couples, I naively believed he would never endorse the thesis that same-sex unions cannot be blessed because God “does not and cannot bless sin”.
Fionnán Sheahan’s comment piece about Leo Varadkar’s current travails reminds us of the strong reactions the Fine Gael man has provoked since he first entered the Dáil in 2007 (‘Leo Varadkar becoming Taoiseach was a breath of fresh air for politics. Now there’s a stench hanging off him’, Irish Independent, March 20).
The possible reunification of Ireland (‘Reunification of Ireland must be based on something more subtle than headcount’, Michael Kelly, Comment, March 18) depends on more elusive considerations than the belief a referendum in the near future will support reunification as a reaction to the unsuccessful vote to stay within the EU. Or that a majority will vote in favour of reunification based on headcount and empty promises.
Sir - As a grandparent who helps out with the school run, I would like to make a couple of observations about the appalling behaviour of too many parents in ignoring the rules of social distancing now the schools are back open again.
I wish to address the fact that so many letters have been published insisting churches should not reopen for public worship while referring to the Feast of Easter as “a major event on the Church calendar”, when in fact it is the most important Christian feast.
I give you a perfect quote on this particular day from President Joe Biden, who proclaimed March 2021 as Irish-American Heritage Month: “The story of the Irish the world over is one of people who have weathered their fair share of hard times, but have always come out strong on the other side.” A very happy St Patrick’s Day to all.
Reflecting on the ongoing housing situation in Ireland, it occurs to me that the current situation, ironically, has been partly driven by societal success over the last 60 years as the population has grown from three million to very nearly five million today.
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