Nationwide VisitOn Tuesday of Holy Week the RTÉ Nationwide team with Mary Kennedy visited the Sophia complex on Cork Street where Partners in Faith have their office to film a piece for the Nationwide prog- ramme. They talked to Robert who is a resident of the complex, Trevor who looks after the kitchen, Maura who manages the Wisdom Centre and Dave who is on the team of Partners in Faith. Included in the filming was the Easter ritual run by Partners in Faith for the residents. The episode will be broadcast in early July. Pictured above are Sr.Jean Quinn, founder and CEO of Sophia, Deirdre, Mary Kennedy, Jon, Mary and Dave.

Nationwide's Mary Kennedy recently paid a visit to the Partners in Faith office in Cork Street and was shown around the Sophia Housing Association complex and Wisdom Centre while she was here. It was a special treat for staff and residents who all confessed to being big fans of Mary and Nationwide! Mary has just returned from Ethiopia where she was filming the work of the Playing for Life charity which was setup by Tracy Piggott. (Pictured from left: Deirdre Kennedy, who works with Partners in Faith, Jean Quinn DW CEO of the Sophia Housing Association and Mary Kennedy). For more photos see the Photos section.

Deirdre Kennedy has recently joined the PIF team of Mary O’Dwyer, Dave Donnellan and Jonathan Cripps. The full team met for the first time on October 10th, 2011. (Pictured l to r Deirdre, Mary, Dave and Jon ). Deirdre brings a wealth of experience with her from her work on the Aran Islands, more details of which can be found on Derdre's website A big welcome to Deirdre from all in the Partners in Faith network.


Marion & Gemma

Gemma & Kate

Summer School Group

Thanks for the Memories!


The annual Partners in Faith Summer School finished today with a big thank you to Gemma McKenna who is withdrawing from a leadership function within the team. Gemma will still be an active presence within the PIF network in a role she hopes will evolve organically in the coming years. Dave Donnellan will be stepping into the role vacated by Gemma on the team. Also in the coming months Partners will also be advertising for a new team member to fill the place left by Gemma on the team.


Kate Sheehan, one of the Partners in Faith trustees, led tributes at the end of the two day Summer School to Gemma followed by contributions from many present who knew Gemma stretching back many years to her work with Ciaran Early in Dublin and beyond. Gemma joined Ciaran in Partners in Faith shortly after it was founded and when it was based in the Dublin Institute of Adult Education in Mountjoy Square. It was a moving and emotional tribute which reflected how Gemma's work over the years has been valued by those with whom she has come into contact and with whom she has forged such links of deep and abiding affection.{jcomments on}

Sat 11th June was a busy day for Partners. Jon and Mary went over the England to attend a catechetical meeting at Wistaston Hall in Crewe. They presented a sample of the recently developed 'Ripples' workshop to the meeting. This process oriented approach of this workshop combines the Eastern Tai Chi tradition with a Catholic approach to scripture. Meanwhile Gemma and Dave were in Orlagh with the Justice and Faith group from Kilnamanagh and Castleview for a day's workshop. The beautiful grounds and view of Dublin city provided a wonderful backdrop to the get together.

Partners in Faith have recently completed a series of sessions in the Jesus' Story, Our Story series with members of the Donore Avenue parish community. The twin sessions were run in the mornings and evenings over five Tuesdays. The sessions help to make connections between our experience of people and place today and the people and place in the time of Jesus. The Donore Avenue parish lies in one of the oldest areas of Dublin and includes the Liberties, an area with a rich history stretching back many centuries. The journey into the local experience at Donore Avenue was an enriching reminder of how memory shapes our sense of who we are today and also how it can dialogue with the world at the time of Jesus.

Pierre Simson, a good friend of Partners in Faith, who lectures in Scripture in Sion Hill College recently told us of a book he had come across on Jesus. "It's the best book I have ever read on the subject" he said. And coming from someone who has lectured on the subject for many years and still speaks to packed audiences we thought that was high praise indeed. Having read through it ourselves now we can heartily agree. It is  a classic but very readable work on the subject.


What Pagola manages to do very successfully and in a very readable way is to recreate the world of Palestine at the time of Jesus. Based on the latest scholarship and research in the area of historical and scriptural criticism Pagola uncovers again for us in the 21st century the culture of empire which surrounded the first preaching of the 'Good News' to the poor. More info here ...

PIF ran the first ever event of ‘Listening between the Ripples’ on Sat 19th Feb in the Wisdom Centre, Sophia Housing. On this lovely Spring morning approximately 30 curious, inquisitive people came.


The day was about experiencing, not about taking notes or remembering in detail. A time to relax, quieten our minds and listen inside ourselves to be completely present to and aware of ourselves, each other, our surroundings and sharing in the presence of God deep within ourselves. The attractive, flowing pace of the Tai Chi and Chi Kung movements led us into a heightened sense of awareness, then to stillness. We were still, yet engaged in activity; physically and mentally we were letting go of stresses and strains and at the same unwrapping awareness inside of God’s active, presence.


The tranquil sound of the gong moved us into the next part as we followed the sound into silence. In the stillness that followed a walk in the spring sunshine we were able to reflect on scripture texts and share and ritualise our thoughts and feelings about them. The texts with their imagery echoed for us what had happened in the stillness. A concentrated Zhan Zhuang practice integrating poetry, art, and reflection, the sharing of our ‘trees’.


We concluded the day with prayer around the centrepiece of candle, cloths and spring shoots. As we left for home the words of an irish Blessing accompanied us, safe, aware and inspired. Our leader and guide for the day was our team member, Jonathan Cripps.

‘It was a lovely day, flowing like a gentle river. I went home uplifted, refreshed and with a light heart’'

- Yvonne Daly


'Young people are very concerned nowadays about their bodies, about self-image and how they fit in image wise with their peers. The day offered by PIF was 'just what they were looking for'. The space created, tai chi moments and moments of silence awoke a life inside their bodies that they were unaware of. Sometimes young people are unable to hear Scripture. The listening which was opened in their own bodies made it possible for them to listen to the Word in a new way. The young people I spoke to afterwards found the day very nourishing, refreshing and revealing.'

- Monica O'Reilly


What a WONDER FULL day.  My first taste of TAI CHI, the rituals, the reflections in the Wisdom Centre and evidence of Spring bursting out in the garden in Cork Street.  I left the session renewed with a new Spring in my step.

- Marie Carroll


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