Nick Benson

OTHER NEWS

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Pope to give online Urbi et Orbi blessing

Pope Francis is to deliver a solemn blessing normally reserved for Easter and Christmas later on Friday. "We want to respond to the virus pandemic with the universality of prayer," a message posted on the Pope's official Twitter account said. The hour-long service of...

Pandemic casts spotlight on a nearly forgotten martyr: St Corona

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Irish government approves excavation of former mother and baby home site

The Irish government has approved a forensic excavation of the site of a former state-funded, Catholic-run mother and baby home in the west of the country.

Katherine Zappone, minister for children and youth affairs, announced the excavation on 23rd October.

“I am committed to ensuring that all the children interred at this site can have a dignified and respectful burial,” she said.

Significant quantities of human remains were found in 2017 in Tuam at the site of a home run by the Bon Secours congregation of sisters from 1925 to 1961.

A Commission of Investigation was established following research by a local historian, Catherine Corless, in which she claimed that 796 infants had died in the home and been buried in an unmarked grave on the site.

Death certificates revealed that the children had died of infectious diseases and malnutrition, but that the rate of death was significantly higher than the national average for the period. The case made headlines around the world and generated significant international interest in how unmarried mothers were treated in Ireland by the Church and wider society.

The commission carried out an initial assessment of the site in 2017 and said significant quantities of human remains were discovered in at least 17 of 20 underground chambers that were examined.

Zappone described the approval as an important decision for all connected to the Tuam site.

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Picture: Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone at Government Buildings in Dublin announcing the forensic excavation of the site of a former mother and baby’s home in Tuam in Co Galway.(Niall Carson/PA).

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OTHER NEWS

CAFOD takes its activities online as world stays home

With the onset of the coronavirus leaving many spending more time inside, organisations have swung into action moving their activities online, including UK charity CAFOD, which hopes its digital events and resources will unite international communities. The Covid-19...

Celebrities ready to hit the road as Easter pilgrims

Seven well-known celebrities from a mixture of religious backgrounds will embark on a pilgrimage to Istanbul this Easter, as part of the BBC’s popular Pilgrimage series. Marking the return of the series, Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul will air on BBC Two this...

Pope to give online Urbi et Orbi blessing

Pope Francis is to deliver a solemn blessing normally reserved for Easter and Christmas later on Friday. "We want to respond to the virus pandemic with the universality of prayer," a message posted on the Pope's official Twitter account said. The hour-long service of...

Pandemic casts spotlight on a nearly forgotten martyr: St Corona

She had become nearly forgotten. Little is known about the young woman who was killed for her Christian faith, presumably in the second century A.D. But now, a pandemic is shedding light on her: St Corona. The German Catholic news agency KNA reports the Church’s...