The Carol Service this afternoon was magic. So was the visit to Trinity College. And the Chapel.
Whatever they did, they managed to create an atmosphere that was out of this world. More precisely: out of our world. The organ, the choir, the songs and the readings, not called ‘readings’ but “lessons”. One of the three ministers (I’d call them ‘priests’) was methodist and he invited everybody to be methodist for the evening, join the choir and sing with them as loud and as best as possible. In case you’re not in or from Ireland: singing is not something ordinarily done in a Catholic church here.
Anyhow: it was a great start to the magic of Christmas and a big, big ‘thank you’ to the staff in TCD’s alumni office who could not have been more helpful. It was a difficult visit for me and I can just imaging how this must have felt for Pádraig. But I think it’s good to face the past head on, not to put it aside or to ignore it. But to make it part of the present, and part of new and magic memories.