When the centre closed in doors in early March 2020, we imagined that a 12 week closure might be the worst possible scenario. 

Our first thought was how we might support both facilitators and participants on our courses in this challenging time. We decided to do three things 

To change our monthly newsletter to a weekly one, with some reading material, reflections and information on upcoming events. This would keep people connected who might not use zoom but were happy to read an email we felt. This has proved hugely popular and now regularly travels across the globe! We will keep this newsletter alive in its current form until the centre reopens full time.  

To send a weekly text to everyone, so those who don’t use the internet at all would also know that we are thinking of them. This lasted 12 weeks and was a big success.  

To put some courses online so that those comfortable with zoom might have a chance to interact. We offered the first series in March more as an expression of support, in truth. We really didn’t expect such a take up, but every class filled quickly and zoom worked well for us. We are very grateful to those early facilitators who took the risk of leading workshops in this brave new world 

Slowly a new reality has emerged. Zoom or Teams cannot replace face-to-face contact. However they have opened the centre up to a much wider community – whether its creative writers from the States, poets from Europe or students from Africa. People who would not have been able to afford – time or cost – to travel to Dublin are now able to participate in dynamic workshops with local leaders, on themes ranging from poetry, mysticism, Laudato Si and yoga to Culture Night, Song workshops and Lectio Divina.  

While we eagerly await the reopening of the centre, we may never fully return to only offering courses in person. Now that we have a certain comfort with the technology; some courses might involve videoed talks followed discussion groups  or a conference might have interactive online aspects to allow a speaker from abroad to present ‘live’ to us all. An interesting new way of being together will emerge, let us make sure it is inclusive, affordable and kind.   

Related News

placeholder
Cry of the Earth, Cry of the Poor!…

Cry of the Earth……..   Healthy Planet, Healthy People Petition. Among the challenges posed to us by Pope Francis in Laudato Si’ was to become more socially and politically active. The Healthy Planet, Healthy People petition, to be presented to world leaders at the forthcoming…

Read more
placeholder
Year of St Joseph

2021 has been dedicated by Pope Francis as a “Year of St Joseph” for which Sr Marie Dunne CHF has composed a beautiful hymn “Joseph Ever Faithful”. Click on the link below for a moment of reflection on St Joseph’s care and protection as we…

Read more
placeholder
Laudato Si Animators – The leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations ….

Some of our Holy Faith sisters who worked in South Sudan in recent years will remember fondly Fr Tim Galvin, a Kiltegan priest from Brosna, Co Kerry, who has lived there since 1983. Fr Tim recently trained as a Laudato Si Animator and created THIS…

Read more
placeholder
As we emerge…

As we emerge from lockdown and begin to step out into the summer, its a good opportunity be grateful for all that we have been given. Had we been told in February 2020 that we were entering into more than a year of isolation, we…

Read more
placeholder
A Pentecost reflection

On Saturday 22nd May, we gathered before Pentecost to reflect on the guidance of the Holy Spirit with our friend and guide Donal Dorr. Participants logged in from across this island, England, Scotland, America, Australia and from parts of Asia and Africa too. Much like…

Read more
placeholder
Launch of a New Book Reflecting on Covid
Read more
placeholder
The Irish Catholic Church Calls a Synod – Irish Bishops Ask for your Opinion
Read more
placeholder
From Gloom to Zoom – Creating New Communities of Hope Online

When the centre closed in doors in early March 2020, we imagined that a 12 week closure might be the worst possible scenario. Our first thought was how we might support both facilitators and participants on our courses in this challenging time. We decided to do three things To change our…

Read more
placeholder
Deirdre Ni Chinneide – Crossing the Threshold of Hope
Read more
placeholder
Laudato Si, Bookclubs and Celebrations – Caring for our Common Home Online

A book club with Dermot Lane on his new book ‘Theology and Ecology in dialogue: the wisdom of Laudato Si’. A fantastic opportunity to unpack Dermot’s important contribution to this conversation as we explored how every aspect of our theology and faith was, and is,…

Read more
placeholder
Thank you – Lent and Easter at the Margaret Aylward Centre

If you would like to send us a testimonial or review of any events that we might be able to share with newcomers, please email info@macfd.ie. Thank you.

Read more
placeholder
#DareToCare – A Webinar Encouraging Engagement and Appreciation in Society.
Read more
placeholder
Marie Dunne CHF – Sharing Music and Healing Across Lockdown

Marie Dunne is ‘one of our own’ here in the Margaret Aylward centre – a Holy Faith Sister choir director, and composer of Liturgical Music amongst many other gifts. She is always a friendly, encouraging voice for us all, so we weren’t surprised when across…

Read more
placeholder
January 2021 – New Year, New Possibilities

As we begin again we want to offer our friends and community some gentle, encouraging events to lift our spirits. So we are delighted that Anne F O’Reilly has come together with Deirdre Ní Chinnéide to offer two courses for you, and that Martina Lehane…

Read more
placeholder
Advent and Christmas 2020

 It was a lovely end to a busy year, and we are grateful that we could gather, if only online. We really look forward to being able to meet in person again soon.

Read more
placeholder
The Digital Parish

We continue our Facebook series today here on The Digital Parish asking some questions of priests, religious, bishops, lay people, who have been using digital media before and during the Covid-19 pandemic to reach out online. As well as finding out how people are reaching…

Read more
placeholder
A Love Letter to the Earth

On Sunday, 24 May 2020, we are celebrating! The Margaret Aylward centre is delighted to be part of the organising committee for the prestigious event “A Love Letter to the Earth”. An evening of music, poetry and song with internationally known speakers sharing hope!! Register…

Read more
placeholder
Laudato Si Week!

This week is designated as Laudato Si week! It is the fifth anniversary of the publication of Pope Francis letter to all about caring for our common home. So as we start Laudato Si week today (16-24th May), I invite you to read one chapter…

Read more
placeholder
Colour In The Cracks!

Just sharing a recent sight that spoke, indeed is still speaking Hope to my spirit and brought unexpected Joy to my heart; a gift from “the God of Perpetual Surprises” (Pope Francis, Lumen Fidei 35). Having been ill and cocooned for roughly a month my…

Read more
placeholder
Beyond A Throwaway Culture

It was a great joy to gather together a group of interested, invested participants for a day of reflection and challenge on the theme of eco-justice in our world this February. As a centre, we are convinced that the climate change conversation is the most…

Read more