This was a very different mass. Most of the people attending tonight didn’t seem to know what was going on, despite the introduction provided just before the mass started by someone who was in the know.

It had taken me months of preparation and hard and dedicated study to become an altar boy the best part of 50 years ago. Back then it wasn’t just the ‘moves’ it was also the words, pretty long prayers to be recited between the priest and the altar boys that I had had to learn off by heart. In Latin. – And just when I had learned it all and was ready to go, someone somewhere in the hierarchy decided that enough was enough and that from now on, everything was to be said in German. You can imagine my disappointment!

Tonight I travelled back in time, beyond the birthday of most of those attending. Not sure what to think about it.

The mass was read to remember Pat’s cousin’s family, especially her cousin and her nephew who died a year ago under very tragic circumstances, making headlines in the papers and on Claire Byrne’s TV show. It was a death that should not have taken place. One that make you think “when will they ever learn?”, “where are all the flowers gone?”…

For some reason, I feel beaten today, wondering why on earth people have to die when they shouldn’t have to, why on earth young people are still being ‘managed’ in nursing homes, why on earth we hit a new record of 612 people on trolleys in hospitals  waiting for a bed, why on earth there isn’t a revolution in this country ending all this non-sense of blaming the flu, blaming the system, blaming the previous government, blaming Brexit or Trump?

I feel beaten with no energy left to argue or to fight. It’s so useless. To argue. To fight. The only useful thing to do is to do it myself, ourselves, and to show to the rest of the world that there are better ways to create a civilised, fair, equitable, caring and transparent society.