This flower is called ‘The Christmas Rose’. Yes it flowers at Christmas but its flowers extend right into February. Significantly once we get to February on any fine day, honeybees will always come to it for pollen. Pollen is an essential source of protein for bees. Pollen is very scarce at this time of year which is why this flower is such a lovely addition to your garden to enhance biodiversity.

On This Day

On February 8th 2020 in the Irish General Election no party wins a majority, Sinn Fein 37 seats, Fianna Fail 38 seats and Fine Gael only 35 seats. Eventually a new coalition government was formed between Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and The Greens.

Birthday’s Today

John Grisham (Author) is 68
Nick Nolte (Actor) is 82

Saint For Today: Saint Jerome

Significance Of Today

Getting help and aid to Turkey and Syria where the dreadful and awful earthquakes brought such destruction and loss of life. Already the number of those who have died is at 8000 but it is set to rise much further. When words fail to sum up such a devastating tragedy, prayer allows us to find some words, to express our sorrow and solidarity and to express our hope that help and aid will get to those who so badly need it.

Interesting Quote for Today

“Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.”  ~Helen Keller

Did You Know

Did you know that our brain uses 10 watts of energy to think

Thought For The Week

You are the salt of the earth. But if salt becomes tasteless, what can make it salty again? It is good for nothing, and can only be thrown out to be trampled underfoot by people.” ~Matthew 5:13

Salt is something we take so much for granted and yet all life depends on its chemical properties to survive. Its chemical formula is NaCl and is made up of sodium and chloride. Salt has been used by humans for thousands of years. The ability of salt to preserve food has been the main contributor to the development of civilization.

Salt made it possible to transport food over long distances and also helped to store food when it would be out of season. But salt was often difficult to source and so it was a highly valued trade item. Our bodies also need salt for survival. If we completely cut out salt from our diet we would become unwell in a short period of time. Our muscles would become weak and begin to cramp up. We would suffer from heat exhaustion and our whole body system would start to fail.

It is well known that we consume more salt than we need today. Lots of salt is added to food to increase its taste. A bag of chips from our local chipper tastes so much nicer when it is sprinkled with salt. Too much salt leads to high blood pressure and too little means we can’t survive. The key word with salt is balance and to use it as part of a balanced diet.

It is little wonder that Jesus was so in touch with the image of salt. Jesus beautifully says we are the salt of the earth. Like salt we are essential, precious and unique. Like salt we have a crucial role to play as part of God’s family. We too can contribute in ways that are unique to us. We can use our gifts and talents in a way that works for us. It is about getting the balance right. If we don’t spread our salt, it is no good and if we spread too much salt it is also no good. How do we find the balance?

Pope Francis puts it beautifully when he says: “Let us recover and deepen our enthusiasm, that delightful and comforting joy of spreading good news.” Every time you generate some good news and share good news with someone else it is like spreading salt in balance. We desperately need more good news in our world and in our communities. You are the source of this good news. You are the salt. Without it we have absolutely nothing.

The Thought For The Week is updated each Monday