Mr Monday


 "Go in peace my dear people, 

  and remember,when you wait 

 on your fellow men , you wait on the Lord."


These words, spoken by the much-loved Fr Pat Murphy at the close of Sunday Mass in Dublin in the late 1960s etched themselves indelibly on the table of my heart.  I had read them before then, without their making any impact on me:  "Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other for love makes up for many of your faults.  Cheerfully share your home with others who need a meal or a place to stay for the night" (1 Peter 4:8 ), but that Sunday morning, for me, was truly the day of Salvation.

  Now let me tell you about a certain Mr Monday - so called, because he always turned up on that day of the week, standing on my doorstep waiting for his lunch.

  A most respectable elderly itinerant, habitually clad in a rough tweed coat that brushed the tops of his hob-nailed boots and that had a definite slept-in look about it. His tragic brown eyes trapped in a spider's web of wrinkles, held an expression which implied a life of misfortune and mistake and which now seemed to have abandoned all hope.

   At our first encounter , I ventured to enquire if he would care to sample a steaming pot of Irish stew.  "Asha Glory be to God alanna", he answered,"would a duck swim!".  And so from that Monday onwards , Mr Monday seated himself with an air of expectancy at the stone table on the patio and was never to know that this Cordon Bleu effort was surreptitiously prised from two tins which were stored for his personal consumption. Being so unaware of this transgression, and savouring the solace of two outsize mugfuls of strong, sweet tea, he would touch his hat respectfully on leaving and say: "Wisha glory be to God, isn't it amazin' the way I always hit the stew.  May your givin' hand never fail, macushla!".

  His old-world courtesy reminded me forcibly of the poem written by Hilaire Belloc, which I kept pinned to the wallpaper in the smallest room in the house for the perusal of my children:  "Of courtesy it is much less, than courage of heart or holiness; but in my walks it seems to me, that the grace of God is in courtesy". 

 One Monday, he lingered longer than was his wont.  The coming winter was a cause for concern and if only he could get his fare together he could go across to England where he could get a grand job washing buses in Blackpool.

  His bed now cost him five shillings each night and it was difficult to manage the £10 fare.  Getting on that boat would be a dream come true.  With a volley of thanks he accepted our gift and assured us that God had a surprise in store for us.  I waved him all the way up the road until he rounded the corner and passed out of our lives forever.  "He'll be back next week" my neighbour quipped, "and that money will be transmuted into whiskey down at the Punch Bowl in no time at all". 

  But Mr Monday never returned, and the next day when I opened the letter box, I discovered we were a £1,000 richer.

  "Cast your bread upon the waters and you will find it after many days" (Ecclesiastes 1:11) 

We are one with the saints in reversing nature's proclivity for the survival of the fittest, and working instead, for the opposite, the survival of the weakest.  We are also one with the saints when we know that the story is already written.   All will be well and all manner of thing will be well ' ( Julian of Norwich )

"Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for by so doing, some have entertained angels unawares". 

( Hebrews chapter 13 verse 2 ). 

If we truly love God ( and we can only show this by loving our neighbour ) we will feel like a child in the arms of his father.  We will never be afraid of anything : neither of people nor of events, neither of life nor of death.  We will be filled with trust and with peace.    Chiara Lubrick. 

'Every duty we omit, obscures some truth we should have known.'    John Ruskin. 

In the words of Fr. Ronald Rolheiser :

"The great Jewish prophets, the forerunners of Jesus, coined a mantra which ran something like this:  the quality of your faith will be judged by the quality of justice in the land and the quality of justice in the land will be judged by how "widows, orphans and strangers" (biblical code for the three most vulnerable groups in society) fared while you were alive. Jesus wouldn't disagree.   When he describes the Last Judgement at the end of Matthew's Gospel, he tells us that this judgement will not be, first of all, about right doctrine, good theology, church attendance or even personal piety and sexual morality, but about how we treated the poor. Nobody gets to heaven without a letter of reference from the poor.   Jesus and the great biblical prophets made that clear."

( Visit )  

"We are not, but could be / we don't speak languages, but dialects / we don't have religions but superstitions / we don't create art but handicrafts / we don't have a culture but folklore / we are not human beings but human resources / we do not have face but arms / we do not have names but numbers / we do not appear in the history of the world, but in the police blotter of the local paper / the nobodies who are not worth the bullets that kill them.

Edward Galeano. 

"Blessed are the faithful:

they are like safe anchors in a world of broken moorings,

Blessed are the just:

they are to society what leaven is to bread.

Blessed are the generous:

they keep alive our faith in the essential goodness of people.

Blessed are the caring:

they shine like beacons in a world darkened by indifference.

Blessed are the genuine: 

they glow like gems in a world of falseness.

Blessed are those who are not afraid of sacrifice:

On the day of the harvest they will sing for joy.

And blessed are those who refuse to look back:

they will be found worthy of the Kingdom of Heaven"

Dear Anita

Thank you for your gift of 13O euros to EWTN.

Why are we afraid to trust Jesus, to surrender to His Love and Providence?  Trust in Jesus is at the very heart of mercy. If His mercy is like the ocean, then the vessel for gathering such mercy is Trust.  Our Lord once said to St. Faustina, "The graces of My mercy are drawn by means of one vessel only, and that is TRUST.  The more a soul trusts, the more it will receive". 


Teach me how to trust ! There is more to the virtue of trust than meets the eye. Too often trust is taken to simply mean believing that God is trustworthy. Yet, it is more than this. Trust is a living faith.  Trust means we make a truce with the Lord and abandon once and for all our "need" to pretend we are God. It is to allow Him to be in the driver's seat.

Family, let us determine to trust Jesus, even in the midst of the storms of life.  Let us trust Him with the trust and simplicity of little children.  May we thank Jesus with hearts full of gratitude for the gift of His Mercy. 

In Jesus and Mary,

Deacon Bill.



Now 5O years old

MOTHER ANGELICA, NOW BED-RIDDEN AND AGED 89, is the wonderful woman who started this global programme in a humble garage next to her convent.  The Lord and His Mother were at her side.  It is now brought to you by your generous contributions.  Just see with your mind's eye, the thousands of people who will flock around you  when you go to heaven and who will say " we are here because of your

contributions to keep it on the air".



St. Madeleine.

Because of your generosity we were saved.


Deacon Bill, now in his eighties, gave up his career as a lawyer to take care of her and her wonderful mission.

At the moment, owing to ill heath, they both need your prayers

May the sweetness of Jesus always rest on them and on you !

Slan go foill 

('Bye for now)


 The Legend of the Babouscka,

A Russian Folk Tale.

It has been said by the Poet Ruskin:  " Every duty we omit, obscures some truth we should have known".    The following legend is an illustration of that statement.

"It was the night the dear Christ-Child came to Bethlehem.  In a country faraway from Him, an old, old woman named Babouscka sat in her snug little house by her warm fire. The wind was drifting the snow outside and howling down the chimney, but it only made Babouscka's fire burn more brightly.  "How glad I am that I may stay indoors," said Babouscka, holding her hands out to the bright blaze.

But suddenly she heard a loud rap at her door.  She opened it and her candle shone on three old men standing outside in the snow.  Their beards were as white as the snow, and so long that they reached the ground.  Their eyes shone kindly in the light of Babouscka's candle, and their arms were full of precious things-boxes of jewels, and sweet-smelling oils, and ointments. "We have travelled far, Babouscka, " they said, "and we stop to tell you of the Baby Prince born this night in Bethlehem.   He comes to rule the world and teach all men to be loving and true.   We carry gifts.  Come with us, Babouscka.  

But Babouscka looked at the drifting snow, and then inside at her cosy room and the crackling fire.  "It is too late for me to  go with you, good sirs", she said "the weather is too cold".  She went inside again and shut the door, and the old men journeyed on to Bethlehem without her.  But as Babouscka sat by her fire, rocking, she began to think about the Little Christ - Child, for she loved all babies.

"Tomorrow I will go to find Him, " she said, tomorrow when it is light, and I will carry Him some toys".

So when it was morning Babouscka put on her long cloak and took her staff and filled her basket with the pretty things a baby would like - gold balls and wooden toys, and strings of silver cobwebs - and she set out to find the CHRIST CHILD.  But, oh,Babouscka had forgotten to ask the three old men the road to Bethlehem, and they travelled so far through the night that she could not overtake them.  Up and down the road she hurried, through woods and fields  and towns, saying to whomsoever she met : I go to find the Christ Child.    Where does He lie?   I bring Him some toys.

But no one could tell her the way to go, and they all said:  " Farther on Babouscka, farther on ".   So she travelled on and on  and on for years and years - but she never found the Christ Child.

They say that old Babouscka is travelling still, looking for Him.  When it comes to Christmas Eve, and the children  are lying  fast asleep , Babouscka comes softly through  the snowy  fields and towns, wrapped in her long cloak and carrying her basket on her arm .   With  her staff she raps gently at the doors and goes inside and holds her candle close to the little children's faces. 

"Is He here?" she asks, is the little Christ Child here?" And then she turns sorrowfully away again , crying : "Farther on, farther on!"  But before she leaves she takes a toy  from her basket and lays it beside the pillow for a Christmas gift.  


 she says softly, and then hurries on through the years and forever in search of the little Christ-Child.


 December 2OII

May the sweetness of the Christ Child rest on all who read this story!

You sometimes hear people say / I always find Christmas Day a lonely day/ I think what they are really saying is / I always feel lonely on Christmas Day/ Loneliness is caused chiefly by two things / absence and emptiness.

Let us spare a thought, a prayer, and maybe a visit  for someone who will spend Christmas alone/ and if while spending Christmas in the midst of others/ we still feel lonely / let us not be alarmed / our hearts are always longing for something more / or rather for Someone else, 

In every human heart there is an empty chamber waiting for a guest.




Anita Kilbride-Jones,

St Pauls Bay,Malta.   


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