Category Archives: Uncategorized

Famine Fundraising Around the Globe

It can be argued that the Famine was the first natural disaster (albeit one capitalized upon by London) to spur international fundraising.  A few examples: Irish in NYC (where they were a quarter of the population) sent home approximately $900,000 … Continue reading

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Grosse Isle, Canada, and the Death of Ellen Keane

Father Bernard McGauran immigrated to Canada in the 1830s.  In 1847, he led over forty priests who (along with Anglicans) saw to the sick and dying of Grosse Isle.  At least four priests died (a small percentage probably because they … Continue reading

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A Haunting Monument

This Famine Memorial of life-size bronze sculptures can be found on the quayside by the Dublin Custom House.  The figures are depicted in this setting as they would have appeared walking toward a ship such as the Perseverance which left … Continue reading

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Joseph Bewley: A Friend to those in want

  The Grafton Street Bewley’s – Dublin Quaker Joseph Bewley was an Irish tea and coffee merchant – yes, the same Bewley family that established those wonderful cafes in Ireland and broke the monopoly of the East India Company by importing … Continue reading

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Souperism and the Politics of Aid

Dugort Strand, County Mayo, Ireland When Quakers opened soup kitchens to feed Famine victims, they faced a number of obstacles – logistics, financing and a London government philosophically opposed to providing outright aid.  But the most heart-breaking challenge they faced was from the … Continue reading

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The Sixth Commandment of the Decalogue

A character in a forthcoming novel is forcibly laicized – defrocked for those of us not brought up in R.C. Faith.  There are a few ways this can be done; for my purposes, I chose for him to be expelled from the … Continue reading

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An Exchange of Vows: Monogamy for Celibacy

In a forthcoming novel of mine, the defrocked priest struggles with his growing feelings for the protagonist, arguing that even if the Church has released him from his vow of celibacy, he is not prepared to renounce it.  Refreshing stuff … Continue reading

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