By Sean Byrne
Recently, I received a letter from Caoimhe De Barra from Trocaire and she signed off with the words "Stay safe and may your heart be filled with
I was almost flattened by the generosity of the remark and I would
probably say it was one of the emotional highlights of my week.
It finally concluded with the Trocaire motto "Until love conquers fear".
Saint Paul in his letter to the Corinthians tells us that "Love is patient, Love is Kind", and " Love never fails".
In the circle of life, love manifests itself many ways. The loving bond
between a young couple on their wedding day full of joy and hope for the future.
The bond of love between a young child and their parents as they
become interwoven on life's long journey;
The bond of love between a carer who looks after a family member in old age or with special needs.
The bond of love of the medical profession as they look after those
that are medically compromised inside and outside hospital.
The bond of love between neighbours and community as they look out for one another in these pandemic times.
In her book "The Harbour Within", Sister Consilio advises us that
among the most important ways to live a good happy life are to "live
from the soul" on day one and on day two, to
"acknowledge your own goodness and love yourself". This requires self-compassion, self acceptance, getting rid of guilt ,shame and anger. We cannot achieve this without a heart full of love for ourselves and other people equally.
This is the perfect antidote to the fear and anxiety which is such a
scourge in our society today, fuelled by modern broadcast and social
media. To paraphrase the Trocaire motto, love would then conquer fear.
In this Easter season as days are getting longer and leaves appearing
on the trees with nature appearing in full glory may our hearts be
charged with love. We then would have a
world with greater equality and a world of greater peace.