Photo was taken at Gougane Barra, West Cork (Irl)

This is one of the many trees that fell during the recent Storm Ophelia. You can count the many rings of the tree and each one stands for a year. I make this particular tree to be about 40 years old. Normally the circles start at the very centre and work their way out fairly evenly.

But from this tree you can see that from an early age this didn’t happen. It looks as if it was damaged on one side but still grew out around from the damage or limitations that it had. You can see where it curls in at the bottom towards where the damage/limitation was.

As we remember with love those who have died during this month of November the rings on the tree take on a new meaning. They can be symbolic of the many memories that we have of our loved one who has died. Like the rings on a tree, even when it is cut down, they are clearly visible and will always be with us.

Thought on Monday – November – 06/11/2017

Thought For The Week

The following poem/reflection is called ‘Walking With Grief’ by Andy Raine taken from this months Reality magazine.

Do not hurry as you walk with grief, it does not help the journey.

Walk slowly, pausing often;

Do not hurry as you walk with grief.

Be not disturbed by memories that come unbidden.

Swiftly forgive;

and let Christ speak for you unspoken words.

Unfinished conversation will be resolved in him.

Be not disturbed.

Be gentle with the one who walks with grief.

If it is you, be gentle with yourself.

Swiftly forgive;

walk slowly, pausing often.

Take time and be gentle

as you walk with grief.


‘We believe that all the ties of friendship and affection which knit us as one throughout our lives do not end with death. Confident that God always remembers the good we have done and forgives our sins, let us pray, asking God to gather our loved ones to eternal life.’ ~Prayer of the Church for those who have died

We have just begun our journey through November. Traditionally it is a month when we remember and pray for those who have died. Some might say that such a tradition is morbid and outdated. But evidence at ground level would say that for many people it is a hugely important tradition. Many find it comforting and consoling to have prayers for their loved ones said. Many more find it comforting to visit the grave of a loved one, light a candle, bring some flowers, say a quiet prayer or flick through a photo album to touch in on memories. How we mark this month of November in remembering those who have died is always going to be personal. Whatever works for us is good.

The one common link we all have is the loss and how we miss our nearest and dearest. The loss often goes beyond words and November is a month when we can find meaningful ways of expressing this loss. Our prayers for those who have died is also a good thing. In prayer we stand in God’s presence and in praying for those who have died we are in some way connected with them. Our nearest and dearest who have gone on before us, will always have a special place in our hearts. They will never be forgotten. May they rest in peace.