POSITIVE AGEING: There is an old Gaelic saying that states “Níl in aon rud ach seal” which translates as ‘there is only a spell of time in all things’. Of course, when one is young such a thought could never be conceived or entertained by youth for the perception of time can seem to be limitless for the young. However, as we all know this perception changes with the passing of time. In previous generations the acceptable societal norm for young people was that they were to be seen and not to be heard. Adults were to be obeyed and this was the order of the day. Needless to remark, we know now that this attitude was not correct and in many circles it had a negative consequence.
In any event a radical change came about circa the late 1950’s, early 1960’s and youth came to the fore. Young people were earning more money and the cult of youth was promoted and inflamed by the commercial pop culture. Young people started to assert themselves with long hair-styles, beards and flamboyant clothing. The celebratory culture was spawned especially through the commercial music genre with groups such as the Beatles, the Rolling Stones et al. Adults of all ages irrespective of position were being ignored and minimised by society. The commercial world appreciated the spending power of young people and promoted it at every opportunity. Things were somewhat damped down in the 1980’s when the circumstances of the Irish economy were such that expenditure had to be severely curtailed. The economy was made more buoyant and improved through the early 1990’s. The details of the so-called Celtic Tiger and the subsequent ‘bust’ are only too well known to all. During that period old people were ignored to a large extent and this has continued to the present time. Many older people are now sometimes ridiculed or ignored altogether. In fact, in the Ireland of to-day with the problems of the health service executive a person could be forgiven for concluding that age is a liability. Now older people are being left behind because they are deemed to be too slow and burdensome. Acknowledging the fact that an old head cannot be placed on young shoulders the situation ought to be one of mutual respect and appreciation but it is best to go with the flow as the cliche puts it. Nonetheless some commentators would even dare to mention that old people are ready for the scrap yard. Other than within the family circle such foolish comment is not beyond a possibility. But let us stop and dwell on such foolishness.
Older people are a resource in whichever community they dwell. Their knowledge, wisdom and experience is a resource They have experienced the hard facts of daily life, some more than others, and they have been tempered, so to speak, in the daily fire of everyday existence. Consequently, they may be more capable of dealing with the difficulties that can be visited on our society. Evidence of this is manifest almost daily with sad stories in many quarters. Basically, life is but an experience. Previous generations have always appreciated the knowledge that old people had gathered through their lives. It has been the norm that other nationalities far removed from the Western world, adhered to respect and appreciation for the wise in their communities and societies
There is also another old Gaelic saying that states “Mol an óige agus tiocaidh sé” and this translates as follows “praise youth and it will flourish”. Youth is the new life that grows from birth and in due course replaces the older generation. Each must be seen and understood to compliment the other and this must be done with due respect and regard for the other.
By way of summation on all the foregoing it would be proper and certainly best if all strands of society made every effort to accept and regard the other for what they are simply members of a community that functions within our society. The Bealtine festival is in progress for the month of May and the older generation is displaying its capabilities throughout the country in many forms. You may get all the details of these events at www.infoatageandopportunity.ie The purpose of this month is to convince people that to grow old in Irish society is not something to be dreaded but rather to make our society and country positively the equal if not the best in which to grow old
A RESOURCE CENTRE: The word resource is used nowadays in many different ways and many things and places are referred to as resources. Here in this district there is a building that is packed with resource objects that are available to all who call into this resource centre. It is the County Library and Information Centre. To quote its publicity leaflet “acting as a focal point for social community and cultural life by extending the joys of reading, lifelong learning and discovery to all.”
Access to this resource centre is open to all but to avail of its many facilities one is required to be a member. By filling an application form and submitting it at the main desk to the member of staff together with a photo of identification and proof of address you can gain membership. This permits you to borrow materials, access information and book computer sessions.
Also available in the library are daily papers, magazines, dictionaries, encyclopaedia, local studies, books and maps. You can borrow books from a broad range of fiction and non-fiction items; there are books available on compact discs; DVDs, digital books; large print titles; foreign language titles and these are all included in the lending service. You may borrow up to six items at a time and the lending period is two weeks. There are many books for children such as picture books, books to foster reading skills and bi-lingual books.
During the year the library hosts art exhibitions; community arts events; Bealtine active age festival; seachtain na Gaeilge; writer visits and workshops and a children’s book festival. By means of your membership card you can book a session on one of the computers that provide you with access to the internet and you are allowed one computer session per day.
For the past number of weeks the library is full of leaving certificate students cramming for their examinations. The library is an ideal location for them as they prepare for what may be the most important examination of their young lives. All of the foregoing is free to you once you hold a membership card. Our public library is truly a tremendous resource and not to avail of it is simply foolhardy.
TIME WELL SPENT: Many people have retired from work in the past recent number of years. Many more are unfortunately out of work for one reason or another and with little prospect of a new job in the offing they are experiencing difficulty in passing their time. There is only so much television that anybody can watch or even would wish to watch. Boredom is a feeling that is best avoided and contrary to what is often heard by way of comment “that there is nothing to do”. But there is, in fact, many means of passing time in an interesting manner. A few suggestions come to mind such as volunteering to assist some club, a charitable association or sporting organization. Already, many have decided to actively pursue a healthier lifestyle and were engaged in preparation for the Great Limerick Run which took place on the May bank holiday weekend. There are plenty of study courses available for those inclined to advance themselves in that respect. One type of study course that is available in the St. Paul’s district and that is free to engage in is Local History. The venue for this study is Lissanalta House located on the Dooradoyle road and it is open from 9.30 am until 4.30 pm. It is really a treasure trove for all those with an inclination towards local history. Access is easy and there is no difficulty in parking in the car park nearby. The staff is welcoming and helpful and the surroundings could hardly be more comfortable. It is not confined to residents of this district but is open to the general public..
There is a variety of historic items such as the Census of Population 1996 or the chief inhabitants of the parishes of St. Mary’s and St. John’s parishes, emigration to North America from Limerick port in 1841 or a list of rebel prisoners in Limerick Gaol in 1798. These are just a sample of the many, many articles of Local History that are of interest to people from the city or the county. Other articles that will provide information to the most catholic of interests are family history research, local studies estate records, grave inscriptions (A-G) and Grave inscriptions (H-Z). The foregoing is only an example of the great range of historical articles that are available to the general public.
There are Images of Limerick city and county and the following links to the different items contained in these are listed:- photographs of Limerick County, photographs of Limerick City, audio visual collection, the Irish Tourist Association survey 1943-44, Thatched Houses survey and photographs collections in the library. The Limerick Studies Collection contains the following links to the different items contained therein:-book collection, flora and fauna, journals, literature, local government studies, maps, newspapers, ordinance survey and special collections. There is a collection of the music and song titles about Limerick and there is a selection of songs of Limerick also.
All that is outlined above is only a small sample of what you can study in journals, newspaper and articles available on request that you can peruse at your leisure during the hours of opening at Lissanalta House.
EXPOSITION: There will be exposition of the Blessed Sacrament in the Blessed Sacrament chapel attached to St. Paul’s church after the 10.0am Mass on Wednesday and it will continue until 10.0pm. Every Wednesday there is exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and all worshippers are welcome.
SEE YOUR WAY: If you have spectacles (glasses) that you no longer use or that have been replaced by new glasses the International Lions club is collecting them for recycling to a developing country. It is its intention to pass them on to developing countries for use where they will be of benefit. If you wish to dispose of your old spectacles there is a box in the porch-way of the Dooradoyle library where they are collected. Your voluntary gesture of disposed spectacles will be beneficial and very welcome.
A.A. MEETINGS: The St. Paul’s group of Alcoholics Anonymous meets in the St. Paul’s national school on three evenings of the week at 20.30hours. They come together on each Monday, Thursday and Saturday. If you are having difficulty with your drinking habits you are cordially invited and welcome.
PIETA HOUSE: On this Saturday, May 11 a large party of volunteers will participate in the ‘Darkness into Light’ 5k run/walk/jog from the centre city to Thomond park at 4.0am in support of the charity of refuge, Pieta House. This is to enable the charity to offer help, support, or counselling to people who may have suffered from loss to suicide or self-harm. Even at this late juncture if you wish to help contact Pieta House at dil.pieta.ie or phone 484444.
RE-OPENS: St. Paul’s national school re-opens at 9.0am Monday May 13. On the coming weekend May 18 the children will receive their First Holy Communion which is always a great day for the pupils and their teachers. Hopefully the weather will be sunny to brighten their day even more.
GIVE SUPPORT: On Saturday, May 5 students and teachers of Crescent Comprehensive College took part in the Great Limerick Run in order to create awareness and funds for the Parkinson’s Association. If you would like to help still in any way big or small contact Gráinne Delaney at <firstname.lastname@example.org.
SIMON COMMUNITY: The Irish Country Women’s Association is inviting all its members to help out with the National Bag Pack weekend in aid of the Simon Community on May 17 and 18 from 9.0am until 7.0pm. You may go to any Tesco store at any of the following locations:- Abbeyfeale, Arthur’s Quay, Crescent Shopping Centre, Dooradoyle, Coonagh Cross and Newcastle West. Even if you can spare one hour it will greatly appreciated on any of the days. T-shirts will be provided if you are available just ring Michael at 061/ 608980 office or 085/1318497 with details.
MUNGRET/ST.PAUL’S GAA: 10K EVENT: There is just under 6 weeks left to the 10k- have you been training? Don’t forget to register early only €20 for what has been a very well run and organised event. There is a great choice of Charities you can donate to Limerick Marine Search and Rescue, Enable Ireland , TLC4CF (Tipperary, Limerick Clare 4 Cystic Fibrosis), Rathfredagh Chesire Home and Mid-West Cancer Foundation all great charities that are connected to the club and all in need of fundraising, why not get a group of friends together and raise extra funds for your selected charity. The date to remember is 19th of MAY. Application forms are available in the club shop open Saturday morning 11.30am to 12.30pm or from the website www.mungretstpauls10k.com. Why not friend our facebook page www.facebook.com/mungretstpauls.tenk
Healthy Living Club Questionnaire:
This is available on the club web site as well as through facebook - we need the input of all club members of all ages to ensure that the club is able to put in place a structure to meet the health and well-being needs of our community. It only takes about 10 minutes to complete yet the results could lead to years of improved health and well-being in the community.
Fundraising::the club is looking for volunteers to assist in streamlining and improving the fundraising/sponsorship area of the club. If you have any experience in this area or would like to get involved at any level please contact Rob Donnelly on (087) 971 9323.