Today was another day full of new things, laughter, and good conversation! We started with a simple breakfast here at the Church of Ireland Theological Institute and then we were off to our first stop.
A young local Friend named Amy met us and served as our guide for today. Being about the same age, I really enjoyed getting to chat with her about her life and the differences between Irish and NorthAmerican Quakers.
She led us to the bus which led us to an organization called Christian Aid. Christian Aid works in countries through out the work to eradicate poverty by addressing the fundamental causes. Staff members David, Michael, Carol, and Sorely (may or may not be the correct spelling…I don’t really know) talked to us about their work and perspectives on poverty and social justice issues around the world. The organization’s mission can be broken down into three main points: education about poverty, changing and challenging systems and laws that keep people in poverty, and help in practical ways to eliminate poverty. We also watch some videos which can be found on YouTube if you search for Christian Aid Ireland.
We then had lunch provided by Christian Aid and left for our next adventure of the day: Dun Laoghaire! (Try pronouncing that one!)
Dun Laoghaire is a small suburban town near Dublin. It was about a 30 min dart (small train) ride away. There we walked around, had the greatest ice cream ever, and went swimming. The water was SUPER cold, like I had to take a moment to catch my breath after I got in kind of cold. But it was so worth it the spot we were at was called the Forty Foot (though I’m not sure why…) and is a very popular spot for locals. We had fun swimming around and climbing up the big rock. Though the water was freezing, it was clear and easy to float in with the high salt concentration.
Then it was back to our home base for pizza and games with Aoife.
It’s been such a privilege to be back in Ireland again and getting to explore new places and meet new people. I love being in a place different from home, even in the little things. It draws my attention to those parts of my life that all too often remain in the subconscious, highlighting the diversity of God’s creation and God’s people.
Have a wonderful afternoon! It’s bed time for me now 🙂