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A lifetime of cocooning for Poor Clares

COCOONING and leaving home only in limited circumstances is a new phenomenon in Ireland due to the Covid 19 pandemic, but it is a way of life for members of the Poor Clares’ community in Ennis. The nine sisters are engaged in daily prayer and contemplation and go outside of the walls of their Francis Street convent only for medical appointment or attend courses relating to their vocation or social issue. In earlier times, once a young woman joined the Poor Clares she remained in cloister for her entire life. “We have a constant quite atmosphere here in the convent but do not have a vow of silence,” said Abbess Bernardine Meskell. After five years as boarder at St Joseph’s Convent in Spanish Point, the Castleconnell, County Limerick woman joined the order in Ennis in 1963. “Our day is full, broken into seven different ceremonies, such as mass celebrated by one of the friars, morning and evening Divine Office and …

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