Summer Hiking

Summer Hiking
Mt. Constitution

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Ireland - Day 5, Sunday

We began our last day in Ireland by attending Mass at St. Teresa's Carmelite Church, just a few blocks from our hotel.
Emotions overcame me as I knelt while listening to traditional Catholic Church music that filled this lovely old church.  I immediately had a sense of belonging! We lingered awhile after Mass for candle lighting and some pictures.  I lit three candles for the intentions of my 4th day sisters, my children and extended family, and for healing of a co-worker's mother.

This church is filled with statutes and altars that honor Mary and various other saints.  I love the feeling in an old church - I know our modern ones have all sorts of liturgical reasons for design and materials, but the old ones have the history of thousands of people on their knees asking for God's mercy and blessings on their loved ones.
We spent the rest of the day walking the streets of Dublin, stopping at St. Patrick's Cathedral, no longer a Catholic Church, but lovely nevertheless, and with a nice park attached to the site.

Kathleen, Bridget, and Anthony, quickly informed us of many historical details as we walked the streets.  We saw many churches, most of them originally Catholic, but once the British took over, they became protestant churches.  I heard the pain in their voices as they talked about the oppression the Irish people suffered at the hands of the British.

Someone told us it was only a 10 minute walk to the Guinness Storehouse and Brewery, but apparently only for young, fast walkers.  We were ready for a little Guinness when we finally arrived.
Karen was fascinated by the history of brewing on this 50 acre site, specifically the terms of the lease.  Arthur Guinness signed a 9,000 year lease in 1759 for 45 pounds annually.  The brewery employed as many as 5,000 people at one time, but now with efficient processes in place, only 850 people produce 3 million pints every day!

It's in the water!

We learned about the perfect-two pour method!  
Just one of the views from the Gravity Bar, which has views of the entire city.

Now we were hungry and found this great cafe on Grafton Street!  The most wonderful salads and tomato basil soup ever....
After lunch we enjoyed walking through St. Stephen's Green Park, a wonderful respite from the traffic, shopping, and tourists on Grafton Street.

I always have to take pictures of the flowers - lots of primroses, hyacinths and tulips!

On to our last dinner in Dublin, a typical pub with great Irish food and music.  We intended to go out to Johnnie Fox's, but realized we were tired and all had to get to the airport at 6 AM, so we settled for a pub close to our hotel.  We said good-bye to Bridget, who shared so much with us in just 24 hours.  She worked for 35 years in Pakistan and there learned that all people are God's beloved children, the Taliban, the Muslims and Hindus.  I appreciated her stories about praying with all faiths, the Catholic Morning Offering.  "There are radical people in all countries and organizations, but for the most part, we are just people and need to remember that God loves us all."  She mentioned that she was never afraid while serving as a missionary sister.  I'm sure God blessed her and her work - what a joy to share a little of her life in the past two days!

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