It is first communion season again, and I look forward to the day. Of all the celebrations it has to be the most joyous... full of innocence, fervour, and song.
Part of the preparation involves parents, and it's heartening to see how readily they participate in the "Do this in memory of Me" Sunday allocated to this sacrament.
Some may be cynical about the fact that many are "strangers" to the church but hey - they are here doing their bit to support their children, and to acknowledge the importance of having faith.
While visiting a nonagenarian during the week we reminisced on how society has changed; from her generation to ours, and from ours to the present day.
We were reared, from the cradle, in a strict regime of rules and prayers, and for all intents and purposes our religious lives were based on guilt and shame.
Not so today. Thank God for that.
There are wonderful people out there with young families who are coming from the positive side of thinking - doing good and being kind.
Some time ago, at a wedding, a group of young people placed their bets on the table as to the length of the speeches. A young lady won the bet, but, instead of buying a round of drink for the table, she walked over to the chairperson of the local old folks club and handed over the money.
It taught us a lesson that day. There is so much good in the present generation, and the parents in all parishes are doing the best they can, as all generations did, to give their children the gift of faith to equip them for life by their example.
It is the mothers of Ireland who have kept the faith alive so far, despite the crumbling state of the Catholic Church structure.
We must remind ourselves that our faith is in God, not in earthly structures.
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