Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Evangelical Limerick

This photo was taken a few yards from the Buddy's photo, at the entrance to Fox's Bow in Limerick. Although I have never paid attention to these religious adverts, I realised that they have always been there. Ireland may have had a reputation for unquestioning religiousity, when I was growing up, but it was more of the follow the rules, and don't ask too much of me type, than the Evanglical, or Catholic Charasmatic version. In fact the latter and former were treated with almost as much suspicion as the Jehovah's Witnesses and the Mormons.
My only experience with the Charasmatic's was on a school retreat, (I was a Jesuit School Boy). A priest, who had spent some time working in the U.S., invited two Charasmatic women to join us on retreat. They were kind and friendly, and optomistic, and I was endlessly fascinated, that whilst praying over me, they began speaking in tongues. However, no major religious awakening occured on my part - to my sixteen year old relief. In my co-ed school, retreats were responsible for a lot more flirtation and sexual tension than spiritual rebirth.
There was also a local family who were Charasmatics, they had lots of God related bumper stickers on their car, and the father waged a lone protest when the Dooradoyle Shopping Center, opened for business on Sundays. Mostly I was intrigued by the fact that when we were asked to give each other the sign of peace at mass, instead of shaking each others hands they kissed each other. Their eldest daughter, (about my age), was drop dead gorgeous, and I wondered what would happend if I was to sit beside them.


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