Scottish Gaelic song ‘Gràdh Geal Mo Chridh / Bheir mi o”

This song tells of a man who has lost his gift for music in his loneliness and longing for the woman he loves, until she said her destiny was with him…

Gràdh Geal Mo Chridh’
Bheir mi o hu ho-o
Bheir mi o-o hu o hi
Bheir mi o-hu o-o ho
‘S mi fo bhròn ‘s tu ‘gam dhìth

‘S iomadh oidhche fhliuch fhuar
Ghabh mi cuairt ‘s mi leam fhìn
Gus an d’ràinig mise an t-àit’
Far ‘n robh gràdh geal mo chridh’


Dheanainn treabhadh dheanainn buain
Chumainn suas thu gun strì
‘S bheirinn as a’ ghreabhal chruaidh
Dha mo luaidh teachd-an-tìr.


Ged nach eil sinn fhathast pòsd’
Tha mi ‘n dòchas gum bi
Fhad’s a mhaireas mo dhà dhòrn
Cha bhi lòn oirnn a dhìth.


Bheir mi o
Bheir mi o hu ho-o
Bheir mi o-o hu o hi
Bheir mi o-hu o-o ho
And sorrowful I am feeling without you

Many’s a wet and cold night
I took a walk by myself
Until I’d reach the place
Where was my heart’s bright love was


I would plough and reap
I would provide for you without any difficulty
And I would take from the hard gravel
For my love – our livelihood


Although we are not yet married
I hope we shall be
For as long as I have my two hands
We shall not lack food



Scannal – The Barbara Naughton Case

Barbara Naughton On the 17th of April, 2002, an Irish political colossus fell upon his sword. The man in question was Bobby Molloy.

Molloy had been a TD in Galway West for the previous 37 years, during which time he had represented two political parties and served in a variety of government positions. He resigned his position as Minister for Housing and Urban Renewal because of the perception that he had attempted to interfere in a criminal case which was before the courts.

Daddy, Please Don't - Barbara Naughton  The case in question was the serial rape of Barbara Naughton by her father, Patrick Naughton, over a period a nine years.This crime, which occurred in the idyllic Connemara townland of Camus, was of a particularly horrific nature. Patrick Naughton was tried between the 22nd and the 31st of October, 2001, and found guilty. While Naughton was awaiting sentence, an official in Bobby Molloy’s office made a phone call to Judge Philip O’Sullivan enquiring about correspondence from Naughton’s sister. The judge also received a call from the dept. of Justice asking whether he’d take a call at home from Molloy later in the evening. Judge O’Sullivan said he wouldn’t and terminated the phone call.

Mr Justice Philip O'Sullivan

Mr Justice Philip O’Sullivan.

In Court the Judge drew attention to the phone calls and all hell broke loose. Molloy announced his resignation as Minister and announced his decision not to fight the next election. It was an ignominious end to an otherwise respectable political career.
However, as time passed, the level of Mr Molloy’s involvement in the case became clearer. He had written repeated letters to the Minister of Justice asking for updates on unspecified requests from the defendant’s sister in relation to the case. There followed an exchange of fifteen letters between Ministers Molloy and O’Donoghue in which the Minister for Justice had finally to point out that he could have no role in a case which was being tried by the independent judiciary.

Bobby Molloy

Bobby Molloy.

And what of the victim who found herself in the eye of this political storm? What were her feelings when her traumatic story became the catalyst for the downfall of Molloy?

Scannal retells the tragic story of Barbara Naughton and recounts Bobby Molloy’s role in the court case. Was this interference in the judicial system or Irish political clientelism gone mad? We speak to journalist Fintan O’Toole, court reporter Tomas Mac Ruairi who covered the case, solicitor Andrea Martin and western reporter Brian McDonald.
We also hear Barbara Naughton, the victim at the centre of this tragic case, tell her story for the first time on television.

Click here to watch the programme…

Reporter: Margaret Martin

Producer/Director: Seán Ó Méalóid

State played important role in denying the adopted a sense of their origin

State played important role in denying the adopted a sense of their origin

State gave Catholic hierarchy extensive control over 1952 Adoption Act

Former Catholic Archbishop of Dublin John Charles McQuaid with Éamon de Valera. When the Adoption Act, 1952, was crafted, formalising the adoption process in the Republic, every line of the proposed Bill was sent to  McQuaid for his scrutiny. Former Catholic Archbishop of Dublin John Charles McQuaid with Éamon de Valera. When the Adoption Act, 1952, was crafted, formalising the adoption process in the Republic, every line of the proposed Bill was sent to McQuaid for his scrutiny.

Robbie Roulston Mon, Nov 11, 2013, 12:01

First published: Mon, Nov 11, 2013, 12:01  

Tracing legislation, to enable adopted individuals to identify their biological parents, has recently become a subject of debate, with TD Clare Daly, in particular, pressing Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister for Children Frances Fitzgerald on the matter. In response to Daly’s questions in March last year, Fitzgerald agreed reform was very important and voiced her support for “the strongest possible legislation to deal with this issue” but warned there were constitutional obstacles.

In addition to the commitments of Fitzgerald and the parliamentary questions of Daly and other TDs, a number of organisations, such as the Adoption Rights Alliance, Adopted Illegally Ireland and Adoption Rights Now, are working to shed light on this issue, thereby dislodging another skeleton from the Irish church-State closet.
Adoption Act, 1952
When the Adoption Act, 1952, was crafted, formalising the adoption process in the Republic, the hierarchy of the Catholic Church was given an unusual degree of control even by the prevailing standards in the State.

Every line of the proposed Bill was sent to the Catholic Archbishop of Dublin, John Charles McQuaid, for his scrutiny. McQuaid proofed the legislation and insisted “the safeguards must be such as the church considers sufficient to protect faith and morals”.

To ward off “the evils of proselytism” these safeguards sought to bar couples in mixed- religious marriages from adopting children, and more glaringly prevented the child of such a couple, for instance in the case of an orphan, from being adopted.

Similar restrictions were placed on children of no religion and children aged eight or more. In the case of a mother who changed her religion within a year of giving birth, a subsequent child could not be adopted until a year had passed after the change. This last measure was to safeguard against mothers switching their denominational adherence to find a suitable home for their child.

The Department of Justice also made sure no measure connected to the Adoption Act would enable traceability, and prevented the Department of Health from introducing reforms that would have provided a more straightforward, State-registered paper trail. The Department of Health requested that the adoption register include the county of birth, a proposal rejected by the Department of Justice, which argued: “The number of children involved would be so small in this country that in many cases such an entry would enable any person to trace with a strong degree of probability (and sometimes with certainty) the connections between the two entries by a comparison of dates, etc, in the register of adopted children and the original register of births.”

Thus the paper trail was to be burned as a matter of State policy.
Contradictory agendas
This was not the last time that these two departments would clash over the welfare of children, carrying an important lesson from the period: the State did not act as one on matters of church and State. Different government ministers, different departments and different civil servants pursued varying and often contradictory agendas.

When the Department of Health introduced reforms in 1957 that required adoption societies to notify public authorities before they placed a child with the intent of adoption, so that local authorities could inspect the prospective adoptive home,Catholic Social Welfare Bureau director and McQuaid’s point man on adoption issues Msgr Cecil Barrett was furious.

Barrett confided to McQuaid: “All the Catholic adoption societies objected strongly to this particular section as it cut right across the confidential nature of the work as provided for in the Adoption Act, 1952. I drew the attention of the Department of Justice and the Adoption Board to what had happened and it was the first either of them had heard of it. It was the Department of Health which was responsible for the introduction of this offending section.” Of the adopted child, he argued “legally its original surname is buried”.

Barrett concluded: “No substantial change should have been made without the approval of the hierarchy”. He had the 1957 reforms reversed in the Adoption Act of 1964.

In response, McQuaid sent Barrett his “very grateful congratulations”, and he also wrote to the minister for justice, Charles Haughey, to “express to you my own gratitude and the appreciation of the bishops for your courtesy and for the unfailing co-operation of the department [of justice] in all that concerns the adoption of children”.

The State played an important role in denying some its more vulnerable citizens a sense of their origin. Those who argue today that it has a commensurate duty to address this have a strong case.

Mercy Convent goes under the hammer

The former Mercy Convent at Seatown Place. (12 Dec 2012 Margaret Roddy)

THE FORMER Mercy Convent and St Joseph’s Orphanage at Seatown Place are for sale with a reserve price which would hardly have bought an apartment at the height of the property boom.

Anyone with €275,000 to spare could purchase the historic building which is for sale through local estate agents REA Gunne Property, with Michael Gunne saying that it represents a great investment opportunity.’At today’s prices, it’s about the same as two town houses so it’s a great bargain, even if someone just sat on it until prices go up again.

The imposing three storey over basement building stands on a three-quarter acre corner site and is zoned for town centre mixed commercial use.

‘It has so much potential and could be used for a variety of purposes,’ says Michael.

‘It is widely recognised in the property industry that the market is actually ‘over corrected’ and this is due to the ongoing difficulty in securing the required finance,’ he continues.

‘ There has been a notable increase in activity over the last six to nine months proving things have at last ‘ bottomed out’.

‘Ireland is once again on the international radar for investors and a key factor in this, is value. We anticipate, however, that there will be little development in the short term and have factored this into our pricing of this extensive property.’

‘ The pure scale and prime location of this offering ensures profit to any investor and will no doubt raise a few eyebrows from astute would be purchasers, especially those who have a working knowledge of the commercial market . There are a number of obvious ways to immediately add value such as breaking up the holding into multiple units and applying planning permission and holding for a few years, or indeed simply holding will almost guarantee any investor a sizeable return.

For more in-depth details. See:


Embedded image permalinkH/t Sarcasm ‏@TheFunnyTeens

Would tweet this a hundred times if I could

Most survivors of Industrial “Schools” may not be able to personally relate their own experiences of a mothers unconditional love to that which is poignantly pointed out in the text of photo. However, most of them that I know would have gone on to be mothers themselves, and would have experienced first hand all the symptoms and love that is portrayed in abundance here.

Statutory Fund Meeting

Board Minutes 9 July 2013


BOARD MEETING 9th July 2013

Sylda Langford Chair

Damian Casey
Austin Currie
Tom Daly
Paddy Doyle
Bernadette Fahy
Katherine Finn
Phyllis Morgan

In attendance
Mary Higgins
Julie Anne Dunne

1. Apologies

There were no apologies. However the Chair reported that Martin Power tendered his resignation from the Board due to family commitments. The Chair will write to Martin on behalf of the Board to express  appreciation of his input and to wish him well for the future.

2. Minutes of the meeting Held on 13th June

The minutes of the meeting were read and formally approved. The minutes were proposed by Austin Currie and seconded by Paddy Doyle.

3. Matters Arising from the minutes not on agenda

a. Acceptable Behaviour Policy

The draft behaviour policy was reviewed by the Board and it was agreed that the policy should be made more concise and considered again by the Board in the context of systems and procedures to protect    and support staff. The Chair stressed the importance that any action outlined in the policy be capable of implementation and that the rule of “what a reasonable person would think and do” be followed.

b. Report of Board workshop “what is it we do”

The report of the workshop was circulated as part of the Board papers and was noted by the Board. In this context the Chair raised the question again of inviting applications for assistance with education immediately. The basis for the suggestion was that there were already in place criteria from the Education Finance Board and that individuals wishing to start courses in 2013 could miss that opportunity if assistance was not available. A number of issues were considered in the discussion that followed including those people who may have urgent health needs or are unable to leave their homes due to disabilities. On balance it was agreed that it would be not be correct to prioritise one category such as education at this stage.

Following this, the question of whether RISF should make payments retrospectively was raised. This was discussed and it was generally felt that as there are no criteria in place, agreeing to retrospection could give potential applicants expectations that may not be delivered upon and that could leave them worse off.

4. CEO Work Report and next steps

The CEO presented a work report for the period 13th June – 8th July. Issues, discussion and decisions arising were:

  The data has been received from the Redress Board and this will be used to understand the age profile and geographical location of survivors

  Meetings with stakeholders in Ireland and the UK have been ongoing and provide important information on the needs and preferences of survivors and services available to them

  The necessity of raising awareness and reaching out to survivors outside of these islands was discussed and this will form part of the communications strategy. The Board agreed that local and specialist radio stations would be very important in this respect and some Board members already have contacts in these areas which will be helpful

  Approval has been given by the Departments of Education & Skills and Public Expenditure & Reform for recruitment of staff through the civil and public service redeployment scheme. Any suitable candidates will be interviewed and it was agreed that a survivor should be involved in these.

  The Board agreed to the appointment of a person on a three month consultancy contract and to outsource communications expertise

  The search for alternative premises has continued and additional two premises have been viewed through the OPW and one is suitable. To widen the process commercial agencies will now be approached

  Arrangements for the replacement server, computer hardware and software are now in place and the telephone system will now also be reviewed to ensure that it is fit for future purposes

  A new system to manage contacts to the office and which will be able to facilitate the management of applications and cases has been installed

  Almost 200 people have registered to receive updates on progress from us and the office is receiving an average of 7 telephone calls a day

  A bank account has been opened and this will facilitate the processing of travel and subsistence and other payments in house

  It was agreed to contract with an outside person to prepare policies and procedures that will ensure that the Board and the RISF organisation is fully compliant with legislation and regulation and other government requirements.

5. Reports from Sub Committees

a)  Audit & Risk

The committee had not held a meeting since the last Board meeting but Damian has continued to oversee the investment strategy. It was agreed that the Chair should approach the Department for clarification on the schedule for receiving the balance of funds from religious congregations as the amount of money available will impact on what RISF can provide by way of assistance.

b) Communications

Following on from the Branding workshop a proposal to invite tenders for rebranding of RISF was considered. It was agreed that the CEO would circulate additional information on the purpose of branding with examples of other organisations which had gone through the process and members would respond individually expressing their support or otherwise for rebrandig and that a majority view would prevail.

6. Profile of target group

The Board was presented with a very preliminary analysis of the data received from the Residential Institution Redress Board (RIRB). It was agreed that the data of age, gender and broad location presented held great value and would be important for informing a concise and survivor- focused criteria. Further analysis of the data will be undertaken and presented to the Board at their next meeting.  (Please see the minutes from the meeting held on 12th September 2013 for an update on data analysis)

7. Plan for developing and implementing principles, processes and procedures

The CEO presented to the Board an outline of the steps needed to be undertaken for RISF to become operational. These were:

   Setting the principles for the scheme – some of these have already been agreed at the workshop “what is that we do?” and at other board sessions

   Liaising with public bodies in Ireland – work is underway on this but will need to be intensified to ensure that there are clear and effective structures for cooperation

  Not duplicating statutory services – this will require being clear about what survivors are entitled to receive from state services as citizens and ensuring that RISF can add value rather than duplication    so there is work to be done on clarifying this in Ireland and elsewhere

  Promoting understanding of services to survivors – to include communications strategy, improved website and image; and continued contact with survivors groups and other relevant agencies

  Approving services – developing criteria in terms of governance, activities, reporting, monitoring and evaluation

  Paying grants – Decisions will need to be made on the scope of the services to be included in the scheme, then it will be necessary to project the overall range and demand of those services, by type of service so that we will have an idea of what expenditure is likely to be required in each category. This requires an understanding of the needs of survivors, which is emerging through the consultation and profiling. So far health seems to be by far the largest area of demand – and will require some assessment of individual need as well as information on the unit costs of services.

 Evaluating effectiveness – process will need to be established for ongoing feedback from survivors, annual evaluation of the impact of services and benchmarking.

8. The Magadelene Commission Report

A short discussion was held on the Magadelene Commission Report which had been circulated to the members on its publication. Mary Higgins reported that she had met with the person in the Department of Justice dealing with the report in order to see if there were potential opportunities for learning from one another since some of the recommendations in the Magadelene report mirror some of the RISF activities. The Board agreed that it was important to avoid duplication of effort and resources, particularly since some women will be eligible for assistance from both bodies.

9. Next Meeting

The next meeting was scheduled for the 15th August 2013. However, it was decided that that this meeting would be cancelled to accommodate summer holidays and work on the criteria. The next meeting will be the 12th September 2013 at 10.30 a.m. Department of Education and Skills (DES) Marlborough Street, Dublin 1.

Song for Ireland

Mary Black has been one of my all time favourite Irish singers. I never tire of her singing. I remember residing in Ballyjamesduff at the time this song came out. It was quickly learned by those who sang in competitions.

Song for Ireland

Words & Music : Phil and June Colclough
Lyric as sung by Dick Gaughan

Walking all the day
By tall towers where falcons build their nests
Silver-winged they fly
They know the call of freedom in their breasts
Saw Black Head against the sky
With twisted rocks that run down to the sea

Living on your western shore
Saw summer sunsets, asked for more
I stood by your Atlantic sea
And sang a song for Ireland

Drinking all the day
In old pubs where fiddlers love to play
Saw one touch the bow
And he played a reel which seemed so grand and gay
We stood on Dingle Beach and cast
In wild foam we found Atlantic bass

Talking all the day
With true friends who try to make you stay
Telling jokes and news
And singing songs to pass the time away
We watched the Galway salmon run
Like silver darting, dancing in the sun

Dreaming in the night
I saw a land where no one had to fight
But waking in your dawn
I saw you crying in the morning light
While lying where the falcons fly
They twist and turn all in your air-blue sky

Streisand Effect

Barbra Streisand

Named after the American singer and actress Barbra Streisand, the Streisand Effect describes how efforts to suppress a juicy piece of online information can backfire and end up making things worse for the would-be censor. Ms Streisand inadvertently gave her name to the phenomenon in 2003, when she sued the California Coastal Records Project, which maintains an online photographic archive of almost the entire California coastline, on the grounds that its pictures included shots of her cliffside Malibu mansion, and thus invaded her privacy.

H/t The Taliban must be so pissed off