Time for a Helping Hand

BACK in the 1980’s any decent Catholic was expected to go to confessions at least once a month and weekly for the more devout, whether you had sinned or not.

As a clerical student at Maynooth College, it was easy for me to confess as we were assigned a spiritual director whom I could visit whenever I felt the need.

This involved sitting in an armchair in front of a cosy fire and talking about my doubts and spiritual struggles and the odd wee impure thought or God forbid action may have been thrown in for good measure.

Six months after my ordination to the priesthood, it dawned on me that I hadn’t been to confession since I became a priest. But who would I confess to?

I couldn’t go to the priests that I lived with and disclose all my darkest deeds. When I made enquiries about my dilemma I was universally advised that a monastery on the outskirts of the town was the place to go.

Suggestions were made as to who would be the best confessor to ask for, however, I decided to take pot luck and just turn up and take whoever was on duty that day. Big mistake! Huge! I was shown into a large sitting room with several armchairs and a confessional screen in the corner. I sat down and prepared myself for a nice friendly chat.

To read more on this story see this week’s Fermanagh Herald. Can’t get to the shop to collect your copy? No problem! You can download a copy straight to your device by following this link… Subscribe to current edition


The Fermanagh Herald is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 28 Belmore Street, Enniskillen, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, BT74 6AA