Friday, March 30, 2007

Dated 30th March 2007

The Midland Tribune main headline ‘Anger over Tipp job losses’ concerns 280 people being let off by Proctor and Gamble at their plant in Nenagh.

Killoughey Foroige is doing a 11Kl. Sponsored bed-push from Tullamore to Blueball on Easter Saturday in aid of Alzheimer’s Association. Elsewhere on the same page the Tribune tells us that Killoughey Foroige is doing a 11Kl. Sponsored bed-push from …….

Tonight Paudge & Company are listed as providing the entertainment at Tullamore Court Hotel.

Last night at Shannonbridge Library someone was seeking Art Books and the stocks were low.

Yesterday Mike Keenan from Ferbane was in the area publicising his next appearance on television. Mike sings in the Glor Tire competition on TG4 at 10.30pm on 18th April.

Mike tells us that Glor Tire is Voice of the country. Tire means country and the Glor has a slanted line over the o. He has chosen to sing Desperadoes by The Eagles.

Deirdre Higgins from Tubber was in the DDN Star Search Semi-Final on Tuesday 27th March at 5 o’clock on RTE2 but I only heard about it last night.

Both are talent competitions with the phone in votes deciding the winner or who gets through. To vote for Deirdre text ‘Act A’ to 53539.

The Connemara Marathon and Half-marathon take place take place this weekend. Over 3,000 runners or walkers have entered and Doc tells us that Eley and Mikey are running. The third child got a doctors cert and opted out. Seems that the contestants and spectators are getting bussed out to their starting or viewing positions from Oughterard. Hope that they go easy with the water as there is a major problem with the drinking water in Galway with many people getting sick. Some politician during the week told that 21 Million had been allotted to improving the water in Galway County but had not been used.

Friday evening the late Father Tom Ryan was remembered on his birthday with a special Mass in Clonfad celebrated by Archbishop Joseph Cassidy.

The Munster rugby team lost to Llanelli in their European Cup Quarter Final match.

Of course everyone was watching Ireland and England in their World Cup Cricket match. England won by 48 runs.

Yesterday a man named Mc Aloon from Northern Ireland, who has lived in Illinois for twenty years called in. He had his two uncles from Glasgow with him. One a Kirkpatrick and the other a Mc Aloon. They were having a look around Ireland and hoping to find a Mc Aloon pub or shop. Nothing doing Mc Aloon. Friends think the spelling may have been changed and there are similar names around Donegal and presumably in N.Ireland.

In the village on Thursday was a lady conducting a poll. She told me she worked for Red Sea or Red C. She asked me if it would be all right to ask a few questions. Fire away.

~ Question 1 – Do you intend to vote in the forthcoming General Election?. Answer Yes.

~ Question 2 -- Would you mind indicating your 1, 2, 3, order of preference for the candidates on this sheet ? showing a list of candidates for Laois / Offaly with a box for your preference. Enough is enough and that finished the census questions for me.

The weather has continued good despite promises of rain and the forecast on the Irish Times shows lots of sunshine for next week. The flood level continues to ease back but still has some bank-sides flooded. The back river looks good from the village bridge and the cross shaped bed of daffodils planted for the Millennium is now in full bloom.

Doc tells us that the May fly has started to rise from the beginning of March on the Connemara lakes which is many weeks earlier than usual.

Glad to meet an English visitor from many years ago who has returned to the area. But he is on a different mission. A good friend of his named Kay is very sick over in England and he is visiting Emmanuel House of Prayer in Clonfert seeking prayers for his friend from Eddie Stones and members of the house. Please say a prayer for her as well.

Today two old pike angling friends arrived in Shannonbridge for the weekend. They caught one six pounder today and will fish again tomorrow. It is four years since they first fished this area and at that time they had caught a 20 Lbs plus pike on the River Suck near the mouth of the river and they were looking for weighing scales.
The Midland Tribune has an article and photographs about Baskets Galore in Belmont and shows a group a group that have been attnding basket weaving classes in Perrys Mills with Padraig Larkin Lusmagh as their instructor.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Dated 29th March 2007 02.40 hours

An article in Tuesday’s Irish Times titled ‘Pioneer’s Association on the road to recovery’ tells how 25,000 young people have joined PTAA in recent years. The Pioneer Total Abstinence Association has a Father Mc Greil as their spiritual director and his plan is to visit every branch of PTAA in the coming years.

The owner of Dartmount Square Park in Dublin is Noel O Gara from near Athlone (Ballinahown) and he has put the property on the market with an asking price of 100 Million.

We heard of the news on Wednesday of the death of Mrs Egan,nee Pardy,Belmont, mother of Owen Egan.

Also on Wednesday news of the death of Stephen Kelly aged 23 years from Moystown.

Stephen had been involved in a crash on his motorbike last Saturday on the road between Cloghan and Banagher and died in Tullamore Hospital yesterday.

May they rest in peace.

On Tuesday morning the first major pile-up on an Irish Roadway occurred in a heavy fog on the Kildare to Newbridge road. Some 40 vehicles were involved, 27 people were hospitalized and one person died.

Father Lorenzo Bracken, celebrated a healing Mass in Cluain Chiarain in Clonmacnois on Wednesday evening and a large number attended.

The Irish soccer team played a much better game against Slovakia in Croke Park under floodlights and won 1 – 0. Kevin Doyle scored the winning goal.

Some other results from Wednesday night –

Czeck Republic 1 - Cyprus 0.

England 3 - Andorra 0.

Israel 4 - Estonia 0.

Wales beat Macedonia.

Weather on Wednesday turned out to be fine and sunny and the promised rain did not fall. Flood had eased back well.

The Shannonbridge Library had a fund raising table quiz on Wednesday night and there was a tight race between the seven teams competing. Friend Ben called in and joined Bridie and Kaye and Pat on their team for a short time. Questions were set by a new quiz master and one question asked to use the numbers 3, 4, 6 and 8 using any numerical means to get an answer of 18. Ben had gone for this question.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Dated 27th March 2007.

For the weekend the parish churches and schools were visited by Father Des Arigho from the Holy Ghost Missions. He is a son of the late Jack Arigho who played rugby for Ireland and who was later the rugby correspondent for The Sunday Press.

The good weather has continued and the forecast is for rain on Wednesday. The flood has eased back a little but with Easter only two weeks away and with rain promised, it would be good to see it lower.

Three local deaths of note from the locality.

On Sunday morning Mick Ryan, from Doon known as The Private Ryan was found dead in his bed. A great supporter of the GAA and a friend to a pint bottle of Guinness and twenty Sweet Afton cigarettes and a large circle of friends. Removal from funeral home on Tuesday with burial on Wednesday. As a mark of respect to Mick Ryan the Shannonbridge / Doon lottery draw was postponed until Thursday night.

Mrs Cahill, Bloomhill has died and her burial took place this Monday.

Joe Hickey, Ballinahown has died. Joe was a well known Bodhran player and often teamed up with Timmy Devery, accordion player as guests with Paudge Bennett.

Joe carried his bodhran in a special case and prior to playing he took the shin drum to the kitchen and held it in front of the fire until it was in tune to his satisfaction. He was a gentle giant who played with Timmy on a live radio programme from Shannonbridge some years ago. He was dead nervous playing for the radio man and took two shots of whiskey in preparation. At one Christmas session Tim and Joe were playing in Killeens Bar. Noel Keena got a bodhran and sat down beside Joe to join in .After the set was ended Joe said to Liam “one bodhran player is enough”

May they rest in peace.

The Offaly Under 21 football team had a successful practise match against Clanna Gaels club team in the Shannonbridge GAA grounds yesterday. Good to hear that our local boys on the panel David Corbett and Kieran Flannery both got a game. They were preparing for the Leinster Final due to be played in the next couple of weeks.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Clonmacnois Parish Newsletter
Sunday 25th March 2007 - 5th Sun Lent C
Tel (090) 9674125
Fax (090) 9674267

Masses: Each day @ 10am
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €391. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: G.Brennan, D.Deeley, C.Quinn
Eucharistic ministers: Group 3
Readers for next Weekend: C.Mannion, P.Corbett
Altar Servers for this week: Ailbhe, Aoife
Mass on next Sat eve for the late Michael Kelly, & Mae & Nancy
Mass on next Sun for the late Francis Coleman & family members

Mass for Lent on Mon @ 7pm
'Months Mind' Mass on next Sun for Ciaran Molloy
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €202. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: J.Noble, D.Fitzgerald
Readers for next Sunday: S.Coughlan
Altar Servers for next Sunday: Group B
Eucharistic minister for next Sunday: K.Kelly

Parish Pastoral Council
Meeting on Mon 26th March @ 8pm in Shannonbridge.
Clonmacnois Primary School
A meeting for parents / guardians, wishing to enrol their child / children in St Ciaran's N.S. Clonmacnois, will be held in the school on Wed 28th March @ 7pm. Any parents wishing to enrol their child are invited to attend, and they are asked to contact the school as soon as possible beforehand concerning our information pack.
Tel. 090-9674150 or Mobile 086-8125221.
Holy Ghost Missions
We welcome Fr Des Arigho from the above Congregation who is speaking at the three Masses this weekend.
Service of Reconciliation (Confession)
For First Communion children: Thurs 29th March @ 7.30pm.
For all others: Mon 2nd April: Clonfanlough @ 7.30pm; Shannonbridge @ 8pm
Prayer Centre Clonmacnois
Fr Lorenzo will celebrate Mass there on next Wed @ 7.30pm, and also conduct a healing Service. All welcome.
Many thanks for your Contributions to the SIA Fund (helping our emigrants), especially at very short notice. We have sent €600.00 to the Fund.

Also, many thanks to those who supported the Quiz for the Kenyan Mission, which realised €520.00.
Stroke Care Support Group: Meeting on 28th March @ 7pm in the Health Centre Ballinasloe. Topic: 'Don't fall for me'.
Caring for Carers Meeting: Health Centre Ballinasloe, Thurs 29th March, @ 8pm. The Co-ordinator, Bríd Lynch will attend.
All welcome.
Promoting Best Practice in Voluntary Housing
Information Seminar, Thurs 29th March @ 7.30pm in the Tullamore Court Hotel. For more info call Caroline on 057-9346874

Dated 25th March 2007

On Friday Munster defeated Leinster 24 – 21 at the last gasp.

Irish summer time starts early Sunday morning. Heard on the radio that Easter Sunday 2008 is on 23rd March. A flower shop girl from Loughrea added that Mother’s Day was on 2nd March 2008 just to let you know.

In soccer Ireland defeated Wales 1 – 0 in the first soccer international played at Croke Park. Heard three people describe the game as like watching paint dry. Early on Saturday radio news told that the bookmakers had taken 23,000 on Ireland to win and 30,000 on the manager Steve Staunton to lose his post. Stephen Ireland scored the Irish goal.

For the playing of the national anthems Wales had two players that sang along and Ireland had five.

Ireland plays their next game on next Wednesday in Croke Park. Hope they use some quick drying paint this time.

Saint Patrick’s Missionary Society, also known as The Kiltegan Fathers celebrated 75 years in existence on St. Patrick’s Day.

The weather forecast is for fine good weather until Thursday when rain is forecast.

A good number of privately owned boats starting to move on the river but the flood is still covering the old quay wall.

The Irish Catholic tells that the film Amazing Grace is about a slave-ship and its captain John Newton was forced into Lough Swilly in a storm and he was converted. He wrote the hymn Amazing Grace and some others a couple of hundred years ago.

Kieran Feeney from Belmont was down on Friday looking for a daffodil replica which is normally sold for Conquer Cancer. Alas there was none.

Two Shannonbridge girls Ethel and Vera Price were back in Shannonbridge on Saturday seeking information on a holiday cruise that has Sharon Turley as one of the entertainers. When I get the information it will be posted here.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Dated 23rd March 2007

Shannonbridge / Doon GAA Lotto Jackpot of 18,200 Euros on Tuesday night was won by John Turley, Garrymore, son of Tom and Lena Turley with the four numbers he chose 5, 11, 17 and 25. Some 36 people were hot on his tail with three numbers. The new jackpot on next Monday night will be for 5000 Euros. Congratulations to John and well done.

The shopping channel in the USA was a sell-out for the featured items from Ireland including Shannonbridge Pottery, Tipperary Crystal and the Bog Oak carvings from Ballinahowen. I heard that they were sold in less than an hour. But don’t worry for a similar promotion is to be repeated on QVC.

Last Sunday two anglers visited Shannonbridge and launched their row boat near the jetty. They then rowed across the river to the island and fished for some hours on a cold windy wet day. But they had brought along special umbrellas that gave them ample protection. When they finished fishing they rowed back and drove away. Anglers keep telling us that they never leave litter but these two unknowns left a plastic bag of rubbish and a number of bottles on the island. Just not good enough.

The weather yesterday and today has changed very much for the better with temperatures from 9 to 13C,

Their is great sudden interest in Ireland’s Cricket Team since they have won their way into the last eight in the World Cup competition. Pat was telling this evening that sometime back in the 1800’s Shannonbridge had a top class cricket team and other villages and towns around also had teams.

News today that Lansdowne Road Stadium has been granted planning permission to rebuild the stadium. Limited to three concert type events per year.

Down in Douglas Golf Course in Cork the club has decided to sell the old course in exchange for two new courses in another location and 171 Million Euro deal.

A Father McNatty from Banagher who has been ministering in England has died. May he rest in peace.

Chopin’s last piano has been located in England according to today’s paper.

Garbally College recently won the Senior Cup in rugby and George Mooney from The Doon was on the team.

Ireland plays Wales in soccer in Croke Park this weekend.

The Rolling Stones are playing ‘A Bigger Bang’ in Slane Castle on 18th August.

Kennys Art Auctions Galway in the ‘G’ hotel in Galway takes place on 26th March. Catalogue available on

Free hearing test was offered to Shannonbridge Active Retirement this week. The people giving the test had to go away early but they said that they will come back. I said that they said that they will be coming back.

Finally I met a Canadian this evening that is on a cycling holiday in England, Isle of Mann and Ireland. He has a great interest in motor bikes and the Isle of Mann was a must.

He bought a milk round ten years ago and sold it recently. Now he has time to take a holiday. He decided to bring a bicycle and camping gear with him and he is enjoying himself. He told us that they use one litre size glass milk bottles for their milk. Some organic and special milk is packed in cartons or plastic. On his cycle trip he was astonished at the amount of items discarded in the ditches.

That Irish radio station dedicated to news can be found at 107.6 FM and it is called Newstalk.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Dated Tuesday March 20th 2007

Yesterday after the Pardy father and daughter had left to visit Mrs Ryan of Mullaghature I looked up the Ballinasloe Lions Club phone directory and found two Pardy entries from the Clonfert / Lawrencetown area. I phoned both parties. The first told me that the other Pardy had information on the Pardy Family. This morning Kieran Pardy telephoned to enquire if the Australian Pardys were still around. He has some information on the Pardy Family and Kieran can be contacted by William Leroy or Kareena by e-mailing

After all the talk about the weather today started with sunshine but temperatures were a little on the cold side. Around noon there were a few bits of sleet in the sun.

Dated Monday 19th March 2007

Rugby was big news at the weekend with the final matches in the Six Nations Championships being played. Ireland started against Italy knowing that they were four points behind France in the race. Ireland won by 51 points to 24 points. France played Scotland later on Saturday and won 46 to 19. Wales beat England 27 to 18. And so France and Ireland won four of their five games but France win the Championship by scoring six points more than Ireland. France – 155. Ireland – 149.

The Irish Cricket team caused a major upset by defeating Pakistan in the World Cup.

Sorry to hear of the death of Bob Woolmer, the Pakistan team coach.

The Rachra Syndicate horse Running Wild raced in Down Royal on Saint Patrick’s Day and finished fourth.

Cheltenham Racing last week was a disaster for the Irish with only 5 Irish winners over four days racing.

Some local birthdays recently. David Corbett celebrated his 21st Birthday on Friday 16th March.

Ciaran Guinan St. Ciaran’s Park had a birthday on the same day.

On St. Patrick’s Day Pat Killeen celebrated a special birthday and the two brothers from America John and Jim were home for the happy event. Our cousin John Francis Killeen from near Manchester and his two sons Oliver and Aidan travelled over to Ireland for the weekend and were around for the party night. That’s Hi Maria.

The sister Doc was telling us about a novel gift idea. The Benedictines in Kylemore Abbey are trying to restore a broadleaf forest of mainly oak and ash. Many people are sponsoring a tree in memory of a loved one or as a gift. Your tree will be registered and a certificate issued and the Benedictines will pray for the people in whose memory the tree is planted. Each tree costs 25 Euros.

The Shannonbridge / Doon Lotto Jackpot for four numbers has survived for this week and the draw takes place tomorrow night in Doon. Jackpot 18,200 Euros.

This evening William Leroy Pardy and his daughter Kareena called in on their search for the old family home. They told us that George Pardy was one of a family of 6 boys and two girls. And George went to Australia and arrived in Perth on Christmas Day 1923. George married a Mary Ann Bulfin. They had a son Thomas Henry who was born in Tullamore, a town in New South Wales. William Leroy is a son of Thomas Henry. William mentioned an address of Mullaghature and so they were sent on their way to Mrs Ryan of Mullaghature.

Later Pat told me that she went to school with the two girls Josie and Peggy in La Sainte Union School in Banagher. Their house was on the left having crossed the River Brosna on the road from Shannonbridge to Cloghan. One of the families, a William Bulfin wrote a book titled ‘Rambles in Eireann’.

The weather has been a mixed bag these past few days with wind and rain and sleet and slow and in between sunshine. There were a number of cruiser boats moving around for the long weekend. This morning a hired cruiser went aground near the ‘Cut’ a mile downstream from the village.

Birds have been feeding strong in the cold weather and consider mixing some ground nuts and seeds and making a lard cake for them. Temperature forecast is for 4C or 39F.Ferbane man Mike Keenan is competing in a Glor Tire singing competition on television and appears next Wednesday 21st March at 10.30 and Wednesday 18th April at 10.30 on TG4. Mike is seeking votes if you want to support him.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Clonmacnois Parish Newsletter
Sunday 18th March 2007 - 4th Sun Lent C
Tel (090) 9674125
Fax (090) 9674267

Masses: Each day @ 10am
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €490. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: M.Moran, M.Murphy, M.McManus
Eucharistic ministers: Group 2
Readers for next Weekend: S.Grennan, E.Quinn
Altar Servers for this week: Brian, Caitríona
Mass on next Sun for the late John Joe Egan & Margaret O'Shea

Mass for Lent on Mon eve @ 7pm
'Months Mind' Mass for Paddy Kenny on next Sun
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €340. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: C.Healy, T.Milner
Readers for next Sunday: C.Coughlan
Altar Servers for next Sunday: Group A
Eucharistic minister for next Sunday: P.Darcy
Station Mass for Clonmacnois Area
Next Sat 24th March @ 12 noon in the home of Eric Dilworth
Clonmacnois Primary School
A meeting for parents / guardians, wishing to enrol their child / children in St Ciaran's N.S. Clonmacnois, will be held in the school on Wed 28th March @ 7pm. Any parents wishing to enrol their child are invited to attend, and they are asked to contact the school as soon as possible beforehand concerning our information pack.
Tel. 090-9674150 or Mobile 086-8125221.
Holy Ghost Missions
One of the priests from the above Congregation will speak at the three Masses next weekend.
Tuar Ard Arts Centre Moate
Christine Hennessy in Concert, on Fri 23rd March @ 8.30pm.
Booking Office: 090-6482042.
Students of the Performing Arts Course at Moate Business College present 'Duck' in Tuar Ard Theatre 22nd March, @ 8pm. Adm €5.
Reflection for Mother's Day - from Brazil
She walks along the edge of the river with a bundle on her head.
All day she washes clothes to earn only a pittance.
She catches cold and doesn't complain.
She makes the child's milk,
She sweeps the house and cleans the table,
And clears out the shelves when he is asleep.
She is the woman of the house with no time to rest.
She makes the lunch, she makes the supper,
And some time later at night she still hasn't lain down to rest.
Youth 2000 will hold a Free Youth Weekend Retreat in St Joseph's College Summerhill, Athlone, 30th March @ 7.30pm, and 1st April @ 5pm. Topic: 'Theology of the Body'.

The Turley Family wishes to thank everybody who supported the Table Quiz in aid of Irish Cancer Society. Total raised: €1430.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Dated in the early morning Friday 16th March 07.

Pat Watson from Drum , the writer and storyteller called in today and met Jim and John Killeen who shared a refectory table with him many years ago in Garbally College. Pat is writing a series of local information stories from the locality he will tell on Shannonside Radio on Wednesday between 1.30 and 2.30. This radio station is available on the internet.

Pat Watson wrote a victory song for the successful Roscommon football team and used the O Donnell Abu music. It is sung by P.J.Stacey and is called The Rossies Abu. He seemed to have lots of copies of the disc. His book of short stories is still available and ask about one the next time you are in Shannonbridge.

People with access to the QVC buying channel in the USA may be interested to know that on St. Patrick’s Day they are featuring souvenir products from Ireland. In the line up will be Tipperary Crystal, Shannonbridge Pottery and Ballinahowen Bog Oak. Have an eye out for them. Charlie Hoysted from Shannonbridge Pottery tells us that some weeks ago the QVC people visited the featured factories and they also took some footage at Clonmacnois.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Dated 13th March 2007

The Shannonbridge Active Retirement group meeting heard today that a further 800 Euros has been sent to help the children in Africa. At their weekly meeting those attending have undertaken to contribute 2 Euros each to this cause and Sister Maura and Sister Marie from the Ard Chiarain prayer and retreat house in Raghrabeg have undertaken to send out the donations to other Sisters working on the Kenya Mission field

It seems that the day outing to Sligo will take place on May 2nd.

John O Loughlin took his guitar along to Banagher today when we went along with Mick and John and Pat and John Toher to collect the boat from Banagher. I noticed a lovely clump of daffodils in bloom on the edge of Silverline Cruiser’s lawn. We had to get some assistance from Morgan of Silverline to get the boat started. Then we set out with the sun shining and into a strong head of floodwater flowing against the boat. There was lots of floodwater in the fields and a number of cormorants and swans to be seen. John O struck up the guitar and a few songs were loosed. Toher sang his party piece which we call the O Song and the chorus goes something like this –


Up in the mountains

That’s the place to be

Listening to the Jackdaws

Singing hallalee.

It being a wedding

There was mate galore

And we all ate

‘Ti our bellies was sore.

Chorus Oooooooooo

Old Jack Mc Guinness

Got as round as an egg

And he fell into a corner

And broke his wooden leg.

Chorus Ooooooooooooo

Perhaps she was a woman

Or perhaps she was a man

She scraped off her ears

With a corned beef can.

Chorus Oooooooo

As long as I remember

Sure I never will forget

The night that Jack Mc Guinness

Got his cork leg set.

Chorus Oooooooooooooooo.

Shannonbridge GAA Lotto Jackpot of 18,000 Euros survived last night’s draw when the four numbers drawn were 4, 12, 15 and 18.

Una O Connor’s mother has died and will be buried in Virginia County Cavan on Wednesday 14th March. May she rest in peace.

Cary Thornhill has gone to visit Kerrill in Sydney for a few weeks. Already Pat has a number of words blank in the crosswords and misses the help from Cary.

Dated 13th March 2007

Weekend rugby results –

Ireland beat Scotland 19 points to 18 points in a hard battle with Ronan O Gara scoring all the points and almost strangled during a loose ruck in the last few minutes.

England defeated France by 26 points to 18 points and Italy defeated Wales in the other game. Ireland has won the Treble Crown and trail France by seven points in the championship race. Next weekend Ireland play Italy, France play Scotland and Wales play England in the final series. Ireland had four players seriously injured at the weekend and three of them are very doubtful to play next weekend.

Motorola announced the loss of 330 jobs in Cork last week.

Sit com star John Inman (71) has died. Starred in ‘Are you being served’ and his catch line was ‘I’m free’. May he rest in peace.

Some people around for a visit including

- Ken Gunning for a short break from Jersey Island

- John and Debbie Luker over for a visit from England.

- Ethel Price on a visit from Kerry.

- John Killeen, the brother, home for Saint Patrick’s Day from New Jersey.

The Shelburne Hotel in Dublin reopened to the public yesterday after a 90 Million facelift. By account most of the well known items such as the Horseshoe Bar and Staircase are as they were.

The Cheltenham Racing Four Day Festival runs from Tuesday to Friday this week.

The government have plans to have 1/3 renewable electricity by 2020.

John went for a walk to Raghrabeg on Monday evening and found many primroses in bloom. Also some wild strawberries and a few unknowns. He was delighted to hear so many birds singing on his trip.

An Irish radio station called Newstalk Radio or Radio News talk gives ongoing news items with headlines on the half hour. Ray Walshe was telling us about it but he did not know the frequency. Maybe a Google search might have it. Ray finds it interesting for lots of things.

Temperatures today were about 13 C. Yesterday there was some type of rain practically all day. This morning it was clear with sunshine and the week is promised good apart from some rain on Thursday.

The free paper Athlone Advertiser has a few cocktails for Saint Patrick’s Day like Irish Eyes, The Irish Trinity, Dublin Handshake, Wild Irish Rose and Irish Head Lock.

See March 9th on Page 18.

Irish Eyes contains –

1 shot of Kilbeggan Irish Whiskey

Dash green crème de menthe

Two shots of double cream

Shake with ice, strain and serve.

Find the others.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Clonmacnois Parish Newsletter
Sunday 11th March 2007 - 3rd Sun Lent C
Tel (090) 9674125
Fax (090) 9674267

Masses: Mon - Fri @ 10am
Sat is the Feast of St Patrick - a Holy Day- Vigil Mass on Fri @ 8pm; Mass on Sat @12noon. Mass for Sun on Sat eve @ 8pm
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €380. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: A.Ryan, L.Turley, M.Mitchell
Eucharistic ministers: Group 1
Readers for St Patrick's Day: D.Finnerty, P.Duffy;
For next weekend: M.Killeen, C.Doolan
Altar Servers for this week: Megan, Michaela
Mass for Lent on Mon eve @ 7pm
Mass for St Patrick's day on Sat @ 10.30am - a Holy Day
This Mass will be said for the late Mary & Michael Kelly & family
'Months Mind' Mass on next Sun for Jimmy Devery
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €200. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: B.Maleney, H.Hynes
Reader for St Patrick's Day: A.Coughlan; for Sun, C.Norton
Altar Servers for next Sunday: Group E
Eucharistic minister for next Sunday: N.Egan

Ardagh & Clonmacnois Pilgrimage to Lourdes 2004
27th May - 1st June - 5 nights - fully inclusive Price €659.00.
Booking Forms available now for the pilgrim section from
Joe Walsh Tours 8/11 Lower Baggot St, Dublin 2.
Tel: 01-2410810 / 2410800.
Pilgrimage Director: Fr Noonan, Moate; Tel: 6481180
Invalid Section: Fr Scanlon, Cloghan; Tel: 6457112
Flights departing from Knock.
Fatima 2007 - 90th Anniversary of Apparitions
Depart 27th Sep, including 2-Day Tour of Shrines of Northern Portugal, visiting Balazar, Sameiro, and Braga.
5 Nights FB in Hotel Avenida, Fatima; 2 Nights HB in 4* Hotel Braga. Cost €759. (Plus Insurance €25 if required.)
Spiritual Director is Fr John Naughton, Eyrecourt.
For details contact Nuala on 090-9675148.
Table Quiz on Wed next @ 9.30pm In Killeens
In aid of orphans and needy children in Western Kenya, where Fr O'Hanlon formerly worked.
Ballinasloe Flower & Garden Club
Demonstration by Ethel Mitchell, Wed next, Haydens Hotel @ 8pm
Grower's Competition: 'Pot of Spring Bulbs'.
Member's Competition: 'St Patrick's Day'. Adm: Non-members: €5.
Addiction Treatment & Intervention
ATI (Longford) provide a Free Service to Families & Friends of people struggling with addictions; - one evening a week Practical Support, Information, Informal Discussion. Call: 043-31773
Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann
Accommodation required (B & B, Houses, and Apartments) for dates in the period 19th - 26th August 2007. For further details please phone the Fleadh Office at 057-9325704, or email or view website:
Youth 2000 will have a Vigil Service from 11pm to 4am on 16 - 17th March in the Prayer Centre, Clonmacnois, starting with Mass.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Dated 9th March 2007

Spike Milligan is five years dead. A tribute programme recently showed some of the humour. Gay Byrne had him as a guest on his talk show and asked Spike how he came to be born in India.

“Well I wanted to be near my mother at the time” Spike replied.

Dick Gilbert tells us that an inscription on Spike’s tombstone in Irish says “I told you I was sick”.

This brought on memories of Richard Harris getting sick in a restaurant before he died. As he was being stretchered out he said “it’s the food”

Padraig Turley sent me a selection of Tommy Cooper humour recently but a warning on the bottom forbids it being sent on. I liked the one where Tommy was in the dentist waiting room reading a magazine and remarking ”wasn’t it terrible about the Titanic”.

Some headlines from this weeks local papers –

Enright anger at Shannonbridge Power Plans … Midland Tribune.

Midland Power Station sites kickstart renewable energy …Deputy Dennis Naughten said that the two sites of the old Shannonbridge and Lanesboro power stations had the ability to support local jobs, the farming community and put renewable crops firmly on the agenda. Wood chippings of crops such as willow he sees as the plants using. ( no mention of bone meal etc.

Figures reveal Offaly is the poorest county in the Midlands …Midland Tribune.

Fear grows for 600 Proctor and Gamble workers in Nenagh … Midland Tribune.

Offaly Food Producers scoop Irish Food Writers Awards. … Midland Tribune.

Meadowsweet Apiaries Ballinahown, Andrew Mc Guinness and Mossfield Organic Farm Goods produced on the 240 acres Haslam farm near Birr were two local winners.

Some recent deaths include –

Ciaran Kelly of the famous Ciaran Kelly Ceili Band died on Wednesday.

Mrs Vera Hand from Belmont, a sister of Freddie Vaugh died on Thursday in her home.

May they rest in peace.

A Table Quiz in aid of the Palliative Care Group organised by the Family of the late Mick Turley took place in Killeens on Wednesday night. The support was excellent and some 1300 Euros was raised on the night.

Finally Patrick Kenny’s comment about burning waste in Shannonbridge and Lanesboro power plants … “ Twill be good he says as he hears that a bucket of rats will realize

17 / 6 a bucket”

Mixed weather today with some sunshine and rain.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Date March 6th 2007

Dan Coughlan was telling the other day that the crows across the Shannon commenced their nest building on the 1st of March as usual.

Brendan Mc Williams ‘Weather Eye’ column in The Irish Times yesterday tells us that spring moved from the south at 160Km (100 Ml ) per week. A school project will be observing spring this year and guide lines being used are –

- The blossoming of the horse chestnut, the hawthorn and the ash trees.

- The progress of the primrose.

- The first appearance of the swallow.

Information see

This is also Tree Week in Ireland. Many events are taking place. Visit for details.

On Saturday Jack Hardiman from Athlone stopped by after visiting Clonmacnois.

Jack told us that back in the early 50’s he worked with Pakie Shine, Mary Kate Shine and Anthony Shine in their Egg Store on Magazine Road in Athlone. Shines collected eggs from a wide surrounding area and 300 cases of eggs were sent to Dublin twice a week. A case contained 240 eggs we think.

Near to Christmas Shines bough large numbers of bronze feathered turkeys live. The birds were taken to their yards in Athlone where they were killed and hung on iron rails with innards intact. Feather pluckers from around the town plucked the birds and were paid 4P per bird or £1 per sixty. Turkeys were taken unopened to the Dublin markets.

Jack told us that Pakie Shine, the driver played soccer for Longford Town.

Shannonbridge Active Retirement group are planning a day trip to Sligo early in May. A coach will collect those travelling and take them via Boyle ( tea stop ) and on to Sligo for a cruise on Lough Gill with lunch and dinner and sightseeing and shopping around Sligo Town. Cost for the whole shebang is 70 Euros. Keep an eye on the Parish Bulletin for details of departure and time and where to pay your deposit.

Gerry Casey was telling us at the weekend that his fishing companion John Gleeson has been lucky in recent weeks. Two weeks ago John caught a 15 lb trot on Lough Derg. Next Saturday he caught a 20 lb pike on dead bait on the Shannon near Shannonbridge. Then last Saturday he caught a 28 lb pike downstream of Shannonbridge. Maybe it’s more than luck. Anyhow the fish were returned alive and well to the Shannon.

Some recent deaths include –

Father Jimmy Mc Keon from Ballinamore, and the Diocese of Ardagh and Clonmacnois.

Christy Lyons, one of the of 21 Lyons Family from Banagher who was buried in Croghan County Roscommon yesterday. Brother of the late Dennis and a brother of Billy Lyons from Banagher.

Lord Killanin’s widow has died and will be buried in Galway.

May they rest in peace.

Two girls from Switzerland Andrea and Marina called in yesterday feeling very cold after visiting Clonmacnois. Andrea told us that their family have a holiday home in Glasson. Lots of wind recently and an amount of rain have caused the river levels to rise. I think the 2000 daffodil bed on Lamb Island may be under water.

One of the locals who was working on a group of houses near Birr that were built for the travelling community wanted to contact one of the occupiers. He enquired and was told he was away somewhere but should be back soon. He asked what he was driving and was told ‘A pair of boots’.

Mary counted 22 goldfinches feeding on the groundnut feeders yesterday. Start feeding the birds and enjoy them feeding.

The 7c stamp features the Fly Orchid, or magairlin na gcileanna in Irish’

The 48c stamp has a primrose or sabhaircin in Irish or primula vulgaris.

This was the stamp used for local postage until the new 55c rate was introduced recently.

Another Irish stamp features the large flowered butterworth or Leith uisge in Irish.

A great win for David Gillick from Dublin and Ireland in the final of the 400 metre at the European indoor athletic meeting at the weekend successfully defending his title.

The front page of the Irish Times yesterday had a lead story on government plans to burn meat and bone meal waste at their peat burning stations. They met with protests at Edenderry power plant by the locals and also when they tried to burn it in Tipperary a famous racehorse trainer Aidan O Brian threatened to take his horses out of the country and the government gave in. Their was rumour that the old chimney standing at Ferbane Power Plant site was going to be part of a waste burning. Protest posters were erected and the ESB removed the chimney

That leaves two peat plants - West Offaly in Shannonbridge and Lough Ree Power at Lanesboro An election in June. Watch this corner.

Good to hear that George and Mary Hogarty are looking at this web and thanks to them for their note.

Where’s That is a popular little column on The Irish Times that features some place from around Ireland. Yesterday the feature was Bloomhill or Cloncraff.from Cluain Creamha (the meadow of the garlic). The article tells us that it is in Clonmacnois Parish. But the Bloomhill that is known locally is north of Ballinahown in Ballinahown Parish. It tells us that garlic was anciently accounted the poor man’s treacle, it being the remedy for all diseases and hurts(except those which itself breeds)

It provokes urine and women’s courses, helps the biting of mad dogs, and other venomous creatures; kills the worms in children, cuts and voids tough phlegm, purges the head, helps the lethargy, is a good preservative against, and a remedy for, any plague, sore, or foul ulcer, takes away spots and blemishes in the skin etc.

Good for Bloomhill

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Clonmacnois Parish Newsletter
Sunday 4th March 2007 - 2nd Sun Lent C
Tel (090) 9674125
Fax (090) 9674267

Masses: Each day @ 10am
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €472. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: K.Price, C.Curley, P.Anderson
Eucharistic ministers: Group 4
Readers for next Weekend: C.Mannion, O.Costello
Altar Servers for this week: Ciara, Dylan
Mass for Lent on Mon @ 7pm
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €231. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: N.Egan, A.Rohan
Readers for next Sunday: I.Maleney
Altar Servers for next Sunday: Group D
Eucharistic minister for next Sunday: D.McEvoy
Anniversary Mass for Frank Devery on next Sun

'Months Mind' Mass for Fr Tom Ryan in the Prayer Centre, Clonmacnois on Wed @ 7.30pm
Suggestions for Lent
 Attend daily Mass; Say the Rosary or part of it.
 Make time for prayer-the Angelus, Grace before or after meals
 Follow the Way of the Cross – The Stations.
 Remember others, who may be sick, lonely or bereaved
 Keep our Parish litter free.
The usual Trócaire boxes for Lent are still available.
As ever, there is a great need felt by workers for Trócaire all over the world to bring relief to the many millions, who suffer from hunger, disease, malnutrition, the effects of war and injustice and sanctions in so many places.
Table Quiz on Wed next @ 9.30pm in Killeens
In aid of 'Michael Turley Memorial Cycle' - to take place Easter Week from Malin to Mizen Head.
All proceeds in aid of Irish Cancer Society.
Teenage Years - "A Minefield"
A day for parents & professionals, presented by the HSE.
Sat 10th March in Mullingar Park Hotel - 10am - 4pm;
Cost: €15.00 (light lunch provided)
Invited speakers: Dr Mark Morgan - social psychologist;
Dr Phil Jennings - Director of Public Health HSE Dublin.
Other speakers will also present on issues that affect our young people today. A panel discussion will invite questions and feedback from the day's attendees. For more info call 057-8664513.
When everything seems to go wrong ... just P.U.S.H.
When the job gets you down ... just P.U.S.H.
When people don't react the way you think they should... just P.U.S.H.
When your money is "gone" and the bills are due...just P.U.S.H.
When people just don't understand you ... just P.U.S.H.!
P=Pray; U=Until; S=Something; H=Happens

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Clonmacnois Parish Newsletter
Sunday 25th Feb 2007 - 1st Sun Lent C
Tel (090) 9674125
Fax (090) 9674267

Masses: Each day @ 10am; Adoration on First Fri with Rosary & Benediction @ 6pm.
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €523. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: M.McManus, C.Slattery, A.Corbett
Eucharistic ministers: Group 3
Readers for next Weekend: S.Grennan, P.Corbett
Altar Servers for this week: Ailbhe, Aoife
Mass on next Sun for the late James Joseph McManus

Mass for Lent on the First Fri @ 7pm
Last Sunday's Offertory collection: €296. Many Thanks
Church Cleaners: A.Walshe, R.Gunning
Readers for next Sunday: D.Boland
Altar Servers for next Sunday: Group C
Eucharistic minister for next Sunday: B.Coughlan
Mass on next Sun for the late Sonny Egan

'It is time to put the Third World First.' (Anon)
Support Fair Trade

Fair Trade Changes Lives

Often poor people in developing countries do not get a fair price for their products. Our Diocese, along with groups like Trócaire, Concern, Oxfam, ICTU are promoting Fair-trade Products. These have the special Logo, which you see above, and guarantee that the producers in developing countries get a fair price for their products, e.g. tea, coffee, bananas, etc.
By changing to Fair-trade certified products, when possible, you can make a real difference to the lives of workers & farmers of developing countries. Sometimes the Fair-trade products may cost a little more, in order to ensure that the producers get a fair price.
That is a little sacrifice we are asked to make, especially during Lent, that others can be rewarded properly for their hard work.
So if you have the choice, support Fair-trade, & help change lives.

Special Olympics Ireland
Due to illness Liam Lawton's Concert for Tues 20th Feb was cancelled. It will now take place on Tues 27th March in the Church of the Assumption Tullamore. 'We apologise for any inconvenience caused.' Tickets available at 057-9321110 / 9325600.
Stroke Care Support Group
Meeting on 28th Feb @ 7pm in the Health Centre Ballinasloe.
Topic: 'Medicines & Prevention of Stroke'.
Geraldine Colohan will speak. Please feel free to bring along your medications or a list of same, if you would like some specific information on them.
Day of Prayer & Reflection & Discussion - 10.45am - 4pm
In Ferbane Girls' School on Sat 3rd March with Fr Peter Burke.
This is part of the Centenary Celebrations of the Sisters of St Joseph of Cluny.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Dated March 2nd 2007.

Sean Carey, Newtown, Ballinasloe called in today and told us that his family operate the Creagh Equestrian Center Tel 087-2254227. Sean also told us that he is related to George Hogarty in the USA. Of course George’s wife is a relation of the late Jimmy Murray of Knockcrockery and she is also a relation of mothers.

The television programme Urban Tales made an appeal recently for ideas to feature in a programme. If you have an idea contact them at

Now hear this. The hearing Aid Clinic is visiting Shannonbridge Active Retirement members on 21st March 2007 from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm to test their hearing. Each test will take about 20 minutes. Look out for more details on the Parish Bulletin soon.

Our Ursuline Nuns retreat center “Ard Chiarain” was featured over two pages in a recent issue of The Irish Catholic and told how a lay couple regularly use the facility and their impressions. They were pleased and the article details the facilities offered.

This week The Irish Catholic has an article on Blessed Charles of Mount Argus who is to be beatified in Rome on June 3rd and will become our new Irish Saint.

Today in The Irish Independent appeared an article featuring the possible takeover of The Irish Catholic by The Farmers Journal Newspaper. Recently The Farmers Journal took over The Field Newspaper which concentrates on horse racing.

In the past week the river level has crept back up and swans can be seen swimming in the flooded fields and callows at the back of the house. Water again covers the old jetty.

Daffodils are in bloom but no sign as yet of the 2000 Cross sown on Lamb Island upstream of the village bridge.

At the risk of catching Bird Flu the bird feeders required topping up again today. Don’t tell Frankie.

Went to Galway with Pat and Mick on Wednesday and after visiting the clinic we met Eilis and young Adam in Days Hotel. Noticed a B+B sign outside for 75 Euro a ni

We tried to contact Peter Hines but the hospital did not have him on their books so he must have moved.

Then we went to Loughrea where Pat wanted to visit the Carmelite Nuns. Unluckily they were on retreat and were not allowed to speak. Leaving the convent we took a back street and got lost. Signs for a carting track were to be seen and then one for Tynagh. We headed for Tynagh and then a sign for Dunirey appeared. Colin is living in Abbey / Dunirey so we decided to call and see him. Our lucky day – he was gone to Galway.

Home to the ‘Bridge.

Some Irish web sites that may be of interest include – one time Cork Examiner Newspaper Radio Eireann for news items sport etc. Irish Independent Newspaper.

Home for a break from England is John Hardiman from Moore.

Some recent deaths include –

Jim Aiken, Belfast and Dublin who promoted some great concerts by visiting artists and singers and also helped Irish bands and singers in their careers. Buried on Monday.

Fergie O Hagan, a member of the famous Clipper Carlton Showband died and was buried on Monday last.

Maggie Doherty nee Mooney, Ballymahon and Horse & Jockey who was buried today.

Maggie was a sister of the late Jimmie Mooney Clondelara.

Jim Mc Bride, Shannonbridge and a native of Donegal died in Portiuncula earlier today.

Edel Turley is organising a Table Quiz in Killeens Shannonbridge in aid of Irish Cancer. It starts at 9.30 pm on Wednesday night March 7th.