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“Hurrah for foundations”, Catherine once said, “They make the young happy and the old young”!

1 September 2017

South Central

                “Hurrah for foundations”, Catherine once said,

             “They make the young happy and the old young”!


                            Welcome to Brigid and Carmel.

At the Mater, we could happily say: “Hurrah for transfers and changes!  They make us all happy”!  At least for us, as the host community, this was certainly the feeling around our home as we prepared for the arrival of Brigid Morgan and Carmel Duggan from Baltinglass on Monday, July 24th 2017. 

Some would say that there’s no more difficult a transition than moving from Sunday evenings to Monday mornings!!  But when it comes to leaving the idyllic landscape of the Garden of Ireland for the North Inner City of Dublin, well, ‘sin sceal eile’ (that's another story) altogether! 

Saying farewell to lifelong friends, special colleagues, and much loved people and places where for twenty three years, one’s love, care and energy had been expended and one’s life anchored and enriched, we can only imagine what Sunday evening - Monday morning of July 23rd/ 24th 2017 must have felt like for Srs. Carmel and Brigid as they left their much loved parish and home in Baltinglass, Co Wicklow for their new home on the fringe of the campus of the Mater Hospital, Dublin 7. 

Yet they arrived, smiling and amazingly calm in the loving and attentive care of Mary Margaret Costigan.  They had had a pre-visit a few weeks earlier and their luggage had arrived on the previous Friday.  Now, they were here and we, the Mater Community, received them with open arms and a cead mile failte.(A hundred thousand welcomes).

It was afternoon, the welcoming ‘cup of tea’ was timely!  As we sat around the table in the dining room, we heard stories of what must have been a weeklong series of hilarious ‘Farewell’ and ‘Thank you’ parties and celebrations.  Seeing the booklet prepared by the Baltinglass Parish Council for the Mass of Thanksgiving for “the gift and blessing of their presence among us” gave us a further glimpse into the range of ministries in which Brigid and Carmel were engaged not to mention the snapshots of dozens of happy faces alight with joyful appreciation. 


Over the past two weeks or so, we have savoured mealtime sharings of mutual memories, experiences and personalities.  In the sharing, we have got insights into how Mercy has been given and received through our very different ministries in two very different settings, and now, as we move to a new horizon together, may the rich colourful tapestries of both intertwine to form, as Mother Teresa says, “something new and beautiful for God” and for the people of North Dublin and beyond. 

On this journey forward together, may we, in the words of Pope Francis, continue “to open doors to the Lord, in following him and communicating his face because the eyes of faith always need the simple but profound look of love.”  (A year with Pope Francis, p.319).  This journey will surely be blessed and enriched by Brigid’s and Carmel’s presence among us. 

Margherita Rock rsm
South Central Province


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