‘Voices of Hope’ in Coláiste Iognaid
Michael D Higgins, Padraig Lenihan and Padraig Ó Ceidigh, will be guest speakers at an evening of prayer, reflection and music in these recessionary times, entitled “Glortha Dochais – Voices of Hope”. The event, organized by Colaiste Iognaid,will take place in the Jesuit Church , Sea Road, Galway. It is a follow up to the talk given in the school last month by Jesuit theologian Gerry O’Hanlon SJ, author of God and the Recession.
According to Eileen O’Donohue, teacher and event coordinator, “Gerry’s talk stimulated a very lively debate amongst, pupils, parents and teachers, about the nature of the recession, and what a truly Christian response to our current economic crisis might be. Many people were anxious that the discussion started that night would not end there and this prayer service of readings and reflections on the same issues is our next step”.
School principal Bernie O’Connell says, “This is an important collaborative event for the school involving parents, pupils, teachers, Jesuits and local well known and respected individuals in the community. They are all coming together to go on and explore further issues of responsibility, hope, and the relevance of religion in these tough times”
Gerry O’Hanlon SJ is Director of the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice. Recently he challenged possible reductions in social welfare. “Why, given the behavior of our banks, given NAMA, are we talking about reducing social welfare rates? That suggests that Ireland’s poorest people are being forced to pay for the recklessness and corrupt activity of a number of extremely wealthy people and institutions”. He also challenged the banks, saying as forgiven debtors themselves and at least co-responsible for the property and housing bubble, “Why don’t they lobby for debt forgiveness and mitigation for its own customers experiencing difficulties with mortgage repayments?”