By Peg Prendeville

Things are changing all around us and our whole routine has to be adjusted. And so we have Athea News on-line. Thank God for modern technology and its ability to keep us in touch. I know it is abused by some but it is a life saver for others so let us keep it that way.

In Knockdown we are mourning two very popular men namely Jack O’Grady and Mikie Kinnane, both of whom died in the past week. Due to the Covid 19 both funerals were for immediate family only but friends and neighbours showed their respect by standing 6 feet apart outside their homes and lining the roads and streets where it was possible. I am sure that was a comfort to the families who had to miss out on the traditional handshakes for which we Irish are noted. Sincere sympathies to the Kinnane and O’Grady families. Special tributes to both these men are included in the Weekly Observer this week.

These are very strange times but I find it amazing to watch how people are adapting and how children seem to be able to take things in their stride. We are getting used to talking to our grandchildren through glass but we miss holding them close. It is not natural but hopefully this too shall pass. Two of my grandchildren came up with the idea of writing a story in which they write a page and put it in my door for me to write a page continuing on the same theme and see how the stories unfold. We could have a novel finished before this is all over!

I read an article during the week written by a priest who feels redundant because he is not allowed perform any of the sacraments which is the main purpose of his vocation. But I hope you will agree with me when I say we need our priests and we need to know they are there for us and that we value their prayers and their presence in the community. I know Fr McNamara from B/L parish says Mass in his house daily for all parishioners intentions. Those of us who attend weekly Mass are grateful to be able to attend Mass online from Abbeyfeale parish each week. We need to tell them this too so they do not feel abandoned.

Thanks to Ta and Ita in Knockdown for keeping the shop open even though the pub had to be closed. It is now that we will realise the value of the local shops.

One of the good things to come from all this “staying at home” is that we realise the whole world is with us and people are showing kindnesses in many ways; by telephone, whattsapp,  facebook. We are all more aware of our mortality and how much we depend on each other and on a higher power to get us through this crisis. And I believe we will. We may be changed, we may have to mourn a loved one but we will survive. Our forefathers survived far harsher times and so we will too. The world will keep on turning as it has been for billions of years. Keep safe everyone and STAY AT HOME as much as is possible.

Thanks to Domhnall for continuing the Athea News online.