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Musicans Rachel O Dea, Hannah Morrissey and Maeve Donegan and who placed symbols on the altar ahead of twelve O Clock mass in Clarecastle on Sunday ahead o their forthcoming Londubh concert in aid of The Children's Grief centre. Looking on are Claire Connellan, musical director and event organiser and Fr Pat Malone, oganiser, Photograph by John Kelly.

youth choir helps to build a new future for young people suffering loss



Members of a youth choir have set the seeds to provide hope for their peers suffering loss through an innovative project.

Clarecastle Ballyea Youth Choir and Celtic Ensemble Londubh launched another aspect of their project Youth helps Youth in Mid-Clare churches recently.

Motivated by the words of former USA president Franklin D Roosevelt, who stated “We can’t always build the future for our youth,” they are determined to build up youth for the future.

The two groups introduced to the liturgy symbols of healing at masses in Roslevan, Clarecastle, Ballyea, Ennis, Shannon and Quin last weekend to create public awareness of children who are experiencing a difficult time.

They expressed their delight at being able to join in support with the young people of the Children’s Grief Centre in Limerick who are experiencing loss.

This will be achieved in a very practical way with a fundraising concert in Clarecastle’s St Peter and Paul Church in aid of the centre on Sunday, December 3.

The symbols for hope, joy, friendship, support, courage, knowledge and love emerged from a day that members of the choir spent at the Children’s Grief Centre in Limerick recently.

Inspired by the atmosphere they experienced at the centre, and using their creative and artistic talents, these seven symbols emerged as important ingredients in a person’s journey to healing, acceptance and wholeness.

The importance of young people supporting each other is key to the Youth helps Youth project. Young people do this by listening to, talking to and being present to one another, offering a kind word, a smile and by sharing and affirming each other’s talents, which will happen when more than 100 young people take to the stage for the concert.

The venture shows how young people can reach out to each other, even those they don’t know in friendship and support and assist them on their healing way.

Musical director and concert organiser, Claire Connellan said, “More and more young people need the positive caring environment in which they can name their concerns and know that they will be heard by people who are trained to introduce them to the path of healing and fulfilment”.

This is her motivating force for involvement with the project.

Fr Pat Malone, parish priest of Clarecastle Ballyea and co-organiser, said it is “great to see young people reaching out in a supportive way to so many people who are in grief or struggling with the tensions of modern-day life”.



Dan Danaher

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