The Heelers Diaries

the fantasy world of ireland's greatest living poet

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Location: Kilcullen (Phone 087 7790766), County Kildare, Ireland

Sunday, April 16, 2017

easter tide

A few years ago I was sitting in the darkness of Kilcullen church moments before the Easter celebration was due to begin.
I was thinking of the decision by my town to abandon the nuns of the Cross and Passion Convent into a lonely retirement in Dublin.
After more than a hundred years educating our sons and daughters we had dumped the nuns without a backward glance.
I sat there shaking my head.
You wouldn't do it to a dog.
My mind flew to an older history.
I remembered hearing about a shipwreck which had occurred in the nineteenth century.
Nuns from Germany were being exiled under a series of anti Catholic statutes known as the Falk Laws.
The ship carrying them sank in the English channel and they drowned.
I sat in Kilcullen church for some unaccountable reason thinking of those sisters.
Had they doubted God as they died?
Were their deaths miserable?
Weren't the German pseudo elites of 1875 probably less remiss in their honest hatred for Catholicism than my own countrymen are today for their sneaking snivelling acquiescence to a media cheer-led bigot war against the church?
Such were my thoughts.
Then the lights came on in the church.
The ceremony began.
Father Michael Murphy went into his sermon.
His first words were:
"Over a hundred years ago a ship called the Deutschland sank in the English channel. On board were five nuns, exiled from Germany under the Falk Laws."
His words stunned me.
Was his sermon a supernatural touch of God's providence?
Father Murphy continued.
"Witnesses recounted that the nuns refused to leave the ship. They stayed where they were in order to allow others to be evacuated. They are said to have prayed the rosary together as the ship went down."


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