Just as I told you last week, Knockdown was inundated on Saturday night last for the fundraiser in aid of Aid Cancer Treatment. The event which was organized by Carol Noonan of Clounleharde began with a raffle and auction on Saturday night in the Knockdown Arms and continued next morning with a gathering of both vintage and modern tractors and vintage cars which lined up in Knockdown. At 12.30 pm the cars headed for Athea and Moyvane while the tractors did Ballyhahill, Loughill and Glin and all arrived back in Knockdown again where the drivers and supporters ate their fill. Carol wishes to sincerely thank all who supported the night and claims she is indebted to her family and to the Knockdown Vintage and Estuary Macra  group whose members worked with her and supported her in making the weekend a true success. She wants to thank all who sponsored numerous prizes and who donated items ranging from teddy bears to silage bales for the auction. The total amount raised has not yet been added up but you will be notified when it has. All profits will go to Aid Cancer Treatment.

It would have been a very happy weekend but for hearing the sad news that Mike Collins of Coole had died suddenly on Friday night/Saturday morning. Mike’s death, at 60 years of age, shocked everybody. We extend sincere sympathies to his wife Eileen (Brosnan), his children Deirdre, Anthony and Mark and to his extended family. May he rest in peace.

Glin Development is launching a new website on Easter Sunday night in Conway’s Bar in Glin. It will also be promoting the walks around the Glin area. Well done to all the members who are always coming up with new ideas.

This is Holy Week. Ceremonies in Ballyhahill at 8pm on Thursday night, 3 pm on Friday and 10 am on Sunday morning. The Saturday vigil will be in Loughill at 8pm. This week always reminds me of the bog as my father took the opportunity of the school holidays to get started at cutting the turf. No matter how tired we were after the day’s work we would go to the Holy Week ceremonies that night.

It was heartening to hear that our new Pope Francis is breaking with tradition on Holy Thursday night and having Mass in a juvenile prison and washing the feet of twelve prisoners. He says “True power is service. The Pope must serve all people, especially the poor, the weak, the vulnerable.” We wait to see the fruits of his labours. It promises to be a different pontificate.

Jim and I had our 5th grandchild almost a month ago – Lucy Hutchinson from Abbeyleix. Lucy has spina bifida myelomeningocele and already has had surgery and hip harnesses and leg casts fitted. The reason I am telling this is because I have a spent last week in Lucy’s home with her Mammy, Daddy and sister Lily and am amazed at how calm the little baby is and how easy she is to look after in spite of all the interferences. She feeds and sleeps as if to say “that is all that is important right now. Let the future take care of itself.” It is a lesson to us adults to take each day at a time and “All will be well.” Thank God for Lucy. She will keep us anchored.