This week saw the Confirmation ceremonies for both Scoil Mhuire and Kennedy Park School. I think last time I wrote was right after the week of both schools’ Confirmation retreats, and I might have mentioned how cool it was to spend that day with these kids we’ve been working with all year. Well it was way cooler to get to actually share their day of Confirmation with them. It was clear from the way they dressed and how many people showed up that this is a really big deal for the kids, the schools, and the families. We were all lucky enough to have parts to play in these important days, from running Powerpoints to Patrick and Carolyn accompanying the choir they’ve been working with for a couple of months. Clarisa and I, as coordinators of the parish preparation program(me), also got to assist Monsignor Denis by reading him the name of each candidate. That meant that we got to be face-to-face with a good number of the candidates, and hear a bit about why they chose their Confirmation names, and see a bit of what this day means for them. These were two Spirit-filled days, and really important for us to see some of the fruits of our work.
After Kennedy Park’s Confirmation on Friday and a celebratory lunch at the Monsignor’s house, we headed to Dublin for the monthly Mass with the ACE community there. These Masses regularly feature a post-communion reflection by one of the lay members of the community, and this month that reflection was beautifully given by our own Carolyn Pirtle. She talked about her journey to Ireland and her journey through Ireland, and what this place has come to mean to her over the last almost-two years. As we keep finding the end of this year approaching faster than we’d imagined, it was great for all of us to hear her reflections and do our own preliminary thinking about the difference this place and these people have made for us.