Liturgical & Social Justice Calendars 

September 2023


Overview of Liturgical Calendar for September 2023

(click on names below to access further information on Saints listed below}

Ordinary Time





 Friday in the 21ˢᵗ Week in Ordinary Time




 Saturday in the 21ˢᵗ Week in Ordinary Time


 The Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday




 22ⁿ Sunday in Ordinary Time




 Monday in the 22ⁿᵈ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Mac Nissi, bishop




 Tuesday in the 22ⁿᵈ Week in Ordinary Time




 Wednesday in the 22ⁿᵈ Week in Ordinary Time




 Thursday in the 22ⁿᵈ Week in Ordinary Time




 The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary




 Saint Ciaran of Clonmacnoise, abbot




 23ʳᵈ Sunday in Ordinary Time




 Monday in the 23ʳᵈ Week in Ordinary Time




 Tuesday in the 23ʳᵈ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Ailbe, bishop


 The Most Holy Name of Mary




 Saint John Chrysostom, bishop and doctor of the Church




 The Exaltation of the Holy Cross




 Our Lady of Sorrows




 Saint Cornelius, pope, and Saint Cyprian, bishop, martyrs




 24ᵗʰ Sunday in Ordinary Time




 Monday in the 24ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time




 Tuesday in the 24ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Januarius, bishop and martyr




 Saint Andrew Kim Taegŏn, priest, Saint Paul Chŏng Hasang and companions, martyrs




 Saint Matthew, apostle and evangelist




 Friday in the 24ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time




 Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, priest




 25ᵗʰ Sunday in Ordinary Time




 Monday in the 25ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Finbarr, bishop




 Tuesday in the 25ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Cosmas and Saint Damian, martyrs




 Saint Vincent de Paul, priest




 Thursday in the 25ᵗʰ Week in Ordinary Time


 Saint Lawrence Ruiz and companions, martyrs


 Saint Wenceslaus, martyr




 Saint Michael, Saint Gabriel, and Saint Raphael, archangels




 Saint Jerome, priest and doctor of the Church



September Global Social Justice & Awareness Days for September 2023


International Day of Charity (A/RES/67/105)                                                                      05 Sep

International Day of Police Cooperation (A/RES/77/241)                                                07 Sep

International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies (A/RES/74/212)                                       07 Sep

International Literacy Day [UNESCO] (UNESCO 14 C/Resolution 1.441)                 08 Sep

International Day to Protect Education from Attack (A/RES/74/275)                            09 Sep

United Nations Day for South-South Cooperation (A/RES/58/220)                            12 Sep

International Day of Democracy (A/RES/62/7)                                                                   15 Sep

International Day for Interventional Cardiology (A/RES/76/302)                                16 Sep

International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer (A/RES/49/114)              16 Sep

World Patient Safety Day [WHO]                                                                                                                                                                                    17 Sep

International Equal Pay Day (A/RES/74/142)                                                                      18 Sep

International Day of Peace (A/RES/36/67)                                                                           21 Sep

International Day of Sign Languages (A/RES/72/161)                                                       23 Sep

International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons (A/RES/68/32)        26 Sep

World Tourism Day                                                                                                                       27 Sep

World Maritime Day                                                                                                                     28 Sep

International Day for Universal Access to Information (A/RES/74/5)                            28 Sep

International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste (A/RES/74/209)                          29 Sep

International Translation Day (A/RES/71/288)                                                                  30 Sep



Pope Francis’s Prayer Intentions for September 2023


For people living on the margins
We pray for those persons living on the margins of society, in inhumane life conditions; may they not be overlooked by institutions and never considered of lesser importance.

Small Group Reflection (PDF)

The Pope Video

The Pope Video is an official global initiative to disseminate the Holy Father’s monthly intentions. It is carried out by the Pope’s Worldwide Prayer Network (Apostleship of Prayer).

This 2 minute video provides a good basis for discussion on the topic.  To see the Pope’s video for September 2023 please click HERE



Beginning of the School Year 2023/2024


Prayer for the New Academic Year

May God bless each of us on our journey through this new academic year.

May He be our eyes that we can see clearly,

Our ears that we may hear clearly,

Our voice that we may speak clearly

And our Hearts that we may love cleary.


Waterford and Lismore have developed a very useful resource pack filled with great ideas, games, blessings and posters for the new Academic Year.  Just click the picture to the left to download.



Season of Creation 2023 

September 1st to October 4th

The Season of Creation has a special significance for the Catholic Church, particularly since Pope Francis established 1 September as an annual World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation. The Season of Creation is marked throughout the Christian world from 1 September to 4 October (Feast of Saint Francis of Assisi) and celebrates the joy of creation as well as encouraging awareness-raising initiatives to protect the natural environment.

To see the launch of the Season of Creation just click on the picture to view the 6 minute video on this ecumenical celebration.


This year’s theme is “Let Justice and Peace Flow” taking inspiration from the Prophet Amos who declares: “Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” (Amos 5: 24). And so we are called to join the river of justice and peace, to take up climate and ecological justice, and to speak out with and for communities most impacted by climate injustice and the loss of biodiversity. As the people of God, we must work together on behalf of all Creation, as part of that mighty river of peace and justice.


We hope that the following resources will help you and your parish community to celebrate the Season of Creation 2023. These resources are compiled by the Laudato Si’ Working Group of the Irish Bishop’s Conference. You can find further resources on the international website:

  1. Sunday Liturgy Notes for Season of Creation 2023: This resource includes homily notes for each Sunday, prayers of the faithful, music suggestions, reflections and mass parts which highlight the call to “Let Justice and Peace Flow”.
  2. A River Ritual: This is a resource for a ritual to be celebrated by a river or stream. Given the theme of this year’s Season of Creation, and the reality that every Irish diocese has a river or sea access point – it seemed very appropriate to offer a ritual prayer that we could celebrate near a riverbank. We hope that this opportunity to gather out of doors in “the cathedral of nature” will be a support and inspiration for all involved.
  3. Season of Creation Biodiversity LeafletA colourful resource with many practical tips and reflections on how to “Let Justice and Peace Flow like a Mighty River” for Biodiversity this Season of Creation. This is an A5 Leaflet from the JPIC committee in the Diocese of Kerry and the Laudato Si’ Working Group. For printing purposes please use this version.
  4. Creation Walk Moments: adapted from the booklet by Fr. Brian Grogan SJ, Creation Walk: The Amazing Story of a Small Blue Planet. You might use this resource in your parish community by setting up moments around the church, or around your parish, to convey the different stages of the story of our Universe. This resource will provide people with an opportunity to experience the wonder and awe of God’s creation and to become familiar with the story of our Universe.
  5. Video Reflection of Pope Francis’ Message for Season of Creation 2023“When we “seek first the kingdom of God” (Mt 6:33), maintaining a right relationship with God, humanity and nature, then justice and peace can flow like a never-failing stream of pure water, nourishing humanity and all creatures.” This video reflection can be used as part of liturgies, parish meetings during the Season or linked to your parish website and social media pages. With thanks to Finbarr Keaveney, Laudato Si’ Animator.
  6. Brother River Meditation: A three-minute reflection of nature sounds and visuals. This could be used at the start of a liturgy or a meeting to help people reflect on this year’s theme: “Let Justice and Peace Flow”. 
  7. Tree Planting ResourceEngage your parish or diocese in Tree Planting initiatives this year. Thanks to ‘Easy Treesie’ we have all the tips you need and prayers for a tree planting service.
  8. A Blessing for Animals: On the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi (October 4) parishes might like to invite people to bring their pets for a special blessing. This resource will help support this activity. “Praise be to you my Lord, with all your creatures.” (Canticle of Creation).
  9. An Introduction to Catholic Social Teaching: This two pager is a short introduction for parish groups on the social teaching of the church.

This resource has been compiled by the Laudato Si’ Working Group of the Irish Bishops’ Conference


For further resources on the Season of Creation check out the following:

The Letter – Laudato Si Film

In 2015, Pope Francis wrote Laudato Si’ (The Letter); an encyclical letter about the environmental crisis to every single person in the world. A few years later, four voices that have gone unheard in global conversations have been invited to an unprecedented dialogue with the Pope. Hailing from Senegal, the Amazon, India, and Hawai’i, they bring perspective and solutions from the poor, the indigenous, the youth, and wildlife into a conversation with Pope Francis himself. This documentary follows their journey to Rome and the extraordinary experiences that took place there, and is packed with powerfully moving personal stories alongside the latest information about the planetary crisis and the toll it’s taking on nature and people. Full film here.  More Season of Creation resources within the theme of art and film can be sourced via Faitharts website

Waterford & Lismore have beautiful resources on the Season of Creation if you click HERE The pack includes beautiful posters to display within the school, as well as exercises and good ideas for the season.

September 3rd   : St Gregory the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church

St Gregory the Great, Pope – Feast Day – September 3 2023

Date of Birth

540 AD

Place of Birth

Rome, Italy


Pope of the Catholic Church

Place of Work

Rome, Italy

Date of Death

March 12 604 (aged 64)

Place of Death

Rome, Italy

Feast Day

September 3



Patron Saint of

1. Musicians
2. Singers
3. Students
4. Teachers


Gregory’s moral theology shaped medieval spirituality and in his writings offered a practical wisdom for the Christians of his day.  He was a reluctant Pope preferring to remain as monk.  It is believed that he may have been responsible for Gregorian Chant but this is not confirmed. He died in 604 and was immediately made a saint.  He is the patron saint of Musicians.

  • For more information check out: HERE
  • Check out this 4 minute video which is concise and provides a very good overview of this incredible saint HERE:


September 4th     St Mac Nissi

Oengus Mac Nissi took his name from his mother Cnes or Ness. It is claimed that Patrick baptised him and taught him the psalms. He seems to be one of the early converts. He chose the district of Connor for his hermitage, but later became bishop of his clan. He died early in the sixth century. Along with St Malachy, St MacNissi is patron of the Catholic diocese of Down and Connor. St MacNissi’s College was opened as a residential college at Garron Tower (see image) on the north-east Antrim coast in the 1950s and remained a prominent second level college in the diocese until 2010, when it amalgamated with two other Antrim schools to become St Killian’s College.


  • For further information check out HERE

September 5th    The International Day of Charity

Lá Idirnáisiúnta Tiomanta don Charthanacht


 “Charity can alleviate the worst effects of humanitarian crises, supplement public services in health care, education, housing and child protection.”


 The General Assembly of the United Nations designated the 5th of September, the anniversary of the death of Mother Teresa, as the International Day of Charity.


It serves as a reminder to individuals and organizations alike to engage in acts of kindness, compassion, and giving back to society. The International Day of Charity encourages people to contribute to making the world a better place by supporting various charitable causes.


Originally a Hungarian civil society initiative to commemorate Mother Teresa’s death, International Day of Charity on September 5 took off worldwide in 2012 when the UN declared it an international holiday. Besides honouring Mother Teresa’s tireless work to help others overcome poverty and suffering for which she received a Noble Peace Prize in 1979. The holiday provides a platform for charitable opportunities to take place. Overall, this day reminds us that simple acts of charity can alleviate the worst effects of humanitarian crises and create more inclusive and resilient societies. Use this day with your students to explore the idea of volunteering and why it is a valuable way of contributing to their community.  “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” ― Mother Teresa 


Some more resources and ideas…..


  • More information on how this day originated can be found HERE

    Acceptance speech by St Teresa on the occasion of her acceptance of the Nobel Peace Prize HERE(Video is 19 minutes long)

  • Mother Teresa would be a wonderful Person of Commitment for our 2nd See Powerpoint Presentation

Mary’s Meals run a wonderful programme for schools that would encourage our young people to support other young people who need their support.  The provide a free school’s programme which can be sourced HERE, the pack contains:

  • A teacher/ youth leader guide, with six lesson plans
  • Complementary resource containing excerpts from the bestselling book The Shed That Fed A Million Children
  • Certificate to present to those who complete the programme.

Mary’s Meals would be delighted to visit your school and chat with your

students about the wonderful work they do


(Mother Teresa)

Here are 10 ideas for random acts of kindness that you can do for the benefit of those around you.

  1. Offer to help a neighbour with chores or errands.
  2. Pay for someone’s meal or coffee.
  3. Leave a kind note for someone to find.
  4. Volunteer at a local charity, homeless shelter, animal shelter, or other nonprofit organization.
  5. Donate items to a shelter or food bank.
  6. Offer to give someone a ride or help with transportation.
  7. Listen and offer support to someone who needs it.
  8. Compliment a stranger and make them smile.
  9. Hold the door open for someone or offer assistance when their hands are full.
  10. Smile today at everyone you meet.



Your gesture doesn’t have to be big or elaborate. Sometimes, the simplest acts of kindness can have the greatest impact.

Donaldson discovered this principle when he had the opportunity to interview Mother Teresa — an interview that propelled him to start Convoy of Hope.

When the Nobel Peace Prize-winning nun asked Donaldson what he was doing to help the poor, he honestly replied he really wasn’t doing anything.

“Everyone can do something,” Mother Teresa told the young journalist.

Take another look at the list above and identify a “something” you can do. It won’t take long at all for an opportunity to present itself, and the growth potential of that one act can create enormous benefits for you and others.

For more information on the Convoy of Hope and how one small gesture created an estabishlished support system for those in need check out




September 8th       Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Saolú na Maighdine Muire

On Our Lady’s birthday the Church celebrates the first dawning of redemption with the appearance in the world of the Saviour’s mother, Mary. The Blessed Virgin occupies a unique place in the history of salvation, and she has the highest mission ever commended to any creature. We rejoice that the Mother of God is our Mother, too. Let us often call upon the Blessed Virgin as “Cause of our joy”, one of the most beautiful titles in her litany.



Check out this one page lesson plan from Ascend on the Nativity of Our Lady.  Click on the picture for a great printable.





For further resources check out the following:

  • Busted Halo have a very good 2 minutes video on Mary which tells it as it is. Background music and good visuals worth checking HERE
  • More information on the Nativity of Our Lady can be sourced HERE



September 8th International Literacy Day 

Lá Idirnáisiúnta Tiomanta don Litearthacht


Rapidly changing global context took a new meaning over the past years, hampering the literacy progress and widening inequalities across world regions, countries, and populations.  In low- and middle-income countries, the share of 10-year-old children who could not read and understand a simple text with comprehension has increased from 57 per cent in 2019 to an estimated 70 per cent in 2022.  

In this context, this year’s International Literacy Day will be celebrated worldwide under the theme, ‘Promoting literacy for a world in transition: Building the foundation for sustainable and peaceful societies’.   


ILD2023 will be an opportunity to join efforts to accelerate progress towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goal 4 (SDG4) on education and lifelong learning and to reflect on the role of literacy in building more inclusive, peaceful, just, and sustainable societies. In doing so, it will embrace the reciprocal relations between literacy and other areas of development: Literacy is central to the creation of such societies, while progress in other areas of development contributes to generating interest and motivation of people to acquire, use, and further develop their literacy and numeracy skills.


Under this theme, ILD2023 will be celebrated at the global, regional, country, and local levels across the world. At the global level, a conference will be organized in person and online on Friday, 8 September 2023, in Paris, France. This global celebration will include the award ceremony of the UNESCO International Literacy Prizes to announce this year’s outstanding prizewinning programmes.  

  • For further information on the day just click HERE

Ways to Celebrate International Literacy Day in Class


  1. Read about some of history’s Heroes of Literacy who contributed to worldwide literacy.
  2. Media literacy is critical in today’s world, and you should make sure your students have the tools they need to understand what’s real and what’s not. Devote some class time to helping them spot misinformation with our guide on Ways to Build Media Literacy in Your Students, and Why You Should.
  3. Celebrate with a Read-a-Thon using your classroom library.
  4. Schedule a video conferencing session with an author. Or, if you know any local authors in your area, invite them to your class. Get some pointers for a smooth visit here.
  5. Share the story of NASA Astronaut Kjell Lindgren and how reading paved his path to space. You can find his story here.



September 9th :   Feast Day of Blessed Frederic Ozanam


 The Church throughout the world, the Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SSVP) and the Vincentian Family celebrate on 9th of September the feast of the blessed Frederick Ozanam, principal founder of the SSVP, whose feast day was established by the Vatican as the date of his death (8 September) was the feast of the birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Frédéric Ozanam always respected the poor while offering whatever service he could. Each man, woman, and child were too precious to live in poverty. Serving the poor taught Frédéric something about God that he could not have learned elsewhere. A man convinced of the inestimable worth of each human being, Frédéric served the poor of Paris well, and drew others into serving the poor of the world. Through the Saint Vincent de Paul Society, which he founded, his work continues to the present day. These words, spoken in 1834 by Frederic Ozanam, remain accurate in today’s world:

“The question which is agitating the world today is a social one. It is a struggle between those who have nothing and those who have too much. It is a violent clash of opulence and poverty which is shaking the ground under our feet. Our duty as Christians is to throw ourselves between these two camps in order to accomplish by love what justice alone cannot do”.

  • For a short video (under 2 mins) on his life and other resources see: HERE
  • For further information check out HERE


September9th International Day to Protect Education from Attack


The day was established by a unanimous decision of the UN General Assembly, calling on UNESCO and UNICEF to raise awareness of the plight of millions of children living in countries affected by conflict. The resolution proclaiming the Day was presented by the State of Qatar and co-sponsored by 62 countries.


The Safe Schools Declaration was opened for state endorsement in Oslo, Norway, in May 2015. It is a political commitment to better protect students, teachers, schools and universities during armed conflict, to support the continuation of education during war, and to put in place concrete measures to deter the military use of schools. By endorsing the Declaration, States commit to restoring access to safe education and to developing education systems that are conflict-sensitive and promote respect between social or ethnic groups. 


For a glimpse into the lives of young people who live in areas of armed conflict this is a 3 minute video which is definitely worth watching.


For further information click here:




September 10th World Suicide Prevention Day

Working Together to Prevent Suicide


 The theme for World Suicide Prevention Day for 2023 is ‘Creating Hope Through Action’. It is a time when we can spread a message of hope to others. Even though suicide is a very complex issue, we can always look out for those who might be experiencing suicidal thoughts and provide support. In this way, we can all contribute and play our part in creating a caring society in which those who may need support, feel comfortable in seeking help.


In Ireland, this is an important theme that is reflected in our national strategy to reduce suicide, Connecting for Life.  It is a time when we can spread a message of hope to others. Even though suicide is a very complex issue, we can always look out for others who might be experiencing suicidal thoughts, and provide support. This helps to create a more caring society where those who need to feel more comfortable in seeking help.

Download a WSPD 2023 partner pack – containing information on messages, links, social media images and content – from the HSE National Office for Suicide Prevention


Check out HERE for some examples of actions from the HSE that can help to create hope this World Suicide Prevention Day.

Support is always available:

Get to know what mental health supports and services are available, and tell more people about them. Speak with a GP about what might be available locally. Tell your family, your friends, your colleagues – you never know when someone might need them. Many are open 24/7 and you can make contact in different ways, for example:

 You can also call the HSE YourMentalHealth Information Line, anytime day or night, for information on mental health, and what other services and supports are available near you – freephone 1800 111 888 or visit




Diocesan ‘Donal Walsh Live Life Pilgrimage 2023/24’


This pilgrimage will be open to 5th and 6th years, in particular those studying religion as an exam subject.  The Pilgrimage will be an overnight trip to Donal Walsh’s hometown of Tralee in Co Kerry to visit where he lived and to meet his parents Elma and Finbarr.  It will also have stops on the way to hear speakers on the subject matter of living life to the full.  Teachers to attend with students  Limited spaces available if you wish to hear more details including costs, schedule, etc please contact Diocese of Ferns; Colette O’Doherty on 087-9474513.


Who was Donal Walsh?

Donal Walsh was tired of seeing young people end their lives while he was fighting each day for his.  Born and raised in County Kerry, Ireland, Walsh was diagnosed with bone cancer in his tibia at the age of 12. He endured nine months of chemotherapy and an operation to give him a prosthetic knee. After two years the cancer returned, this time to his lung. The young boy underwent surgery again to have half of his lung removed and endured more chemotherapy.

In October 2012, Walsh was diagnosed for a third — and final — time with tumors in five different locations in his body.

During his final months, Walsh took to writing about his battle with cancer and how his faith allowed him to persevere in what he called “climbing God’s mountains.” He also wrote about his frustration at seeing a rise in teenage suicide.

It was then that he decided to go on national television to encourage young people to value life.

With only a few weeks left to live, Walsh went on the Irish talk show “The Saturday Night Show” with Brendan O’Connor hoping to emphasize the value of life by sharing his own story.

“If I’m meant to be a symbol for people to appreciate life — it might not be just suicide — but just to appreciate life more in general, then I’d be happy to die if that’s what I’m dying for,” Walsh said during his television appearance.  He spoke for 19 minutes, and those 19 minutes inspired a country. Walsh passed away on May 12, 2013, at the age of 16.

Months later, the coroner of County Kerry reported a decrease in suicides after Walsh spoke out.  Ten years later, his legacy lives on.

On May 11 of this year, more than 2,000 Irish students gathered at the Knock Basilica and Shrine in County Mayo, Ireland, to honour Donal Walsh’s memory. The students listened to several speakers who spoke about different issues that affect the world today, especially mental health.  The Diocese will be organising a bus to next years meeting in Knock on the 9th of May 2024 for all those participating in the Pope John Paul II Awards.  Contact Colette for further information on 087-9474513.

Sourced from



September 10th – St Peter Claver


A native of Spain, young Jesuit Peter Claver left his homeland forever in 1610 to be a missionary in the colonies of the New World. He sailed into Cartagena, a rich port city washed by the Caribbean. He was ordained there in 1615.

By this time the slave trade had been established in the Americas for nearly 100 years, and Cartagena was a chief center for it. Ten thousand slaves poured into the port each year after crossing the Atlantic from West Africa under conditions so foul and inhuman that an estimated one-third of the passengers died in transit.

As soon as a slave ship entered the port, Peter Claver moved into its infested hold to minister to the ill-treated and exhausted passengers. After the slaves were herded out of the ship like chained animals and shut up in nearby yards to be gazed at by the crowds, Claver plunged in among them with medicines, food, bread, brandy, lemons, and tobacco and assured his brothers and sisters of their human dignity and God’s love. During the 40 years of his ministry, Claver instructed and baptized an estimated 300,000 slaves.



September 11th   – 9/11 R.E. Resources /Acmhainn

A reminder that the 9/11 Memorial & Museum is committed to providing ongoing resources for students, teachers, families, and the general public.


They provide a host of educational resources, the Museum strives to foster a deeper understanding of the continuing impact of 9/11 and terrorism on America and the world at large. Recognising that it can be difficult for parents and teachers to talk about terrorism with young people, the 9/11 Memorial & Museum remind us that these conversations are crucial to help future generations understand the events that shaped their world.


Teach + Learn Information, context and resources exploring the attacks of 9/11, including excellent education programmes, lesson plans and interactive timelines are available at:

September 12th           Memorial of the Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary Cuimhneachán ar Ainm ró- Naofa na Maighdine Beannaithe Muire.

The feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary began in Spain in 1513 and in 1671 was extended to all of Spain and the Kingdom of Naples. In 1683, John Sobieski, king of Poland, brought an army to the outskirts of Vienna to stop the advance of Muslim armies loyal to Mohammed IV of Constantinople. After Sobieski entrusted himself to the Blessed Virgin Mary, he and his soldiers thoroughly defeated the Muslims. Pope Innocent XI extended this feast to the entire Church. Mary always points us to God, reminding us of God’s infinite goodness. She helps us to open our hearts to God’s ways, wherever those may lead us. Honoured under the title “Queen of Peace,” Mary encourages us to cooperate with Jesus in building a peace based on justice, a peace that respects the fundamental human rights of all peoples.

  • For further information click on:
  • Fr Mike Schmitz is very popular at the moment through the Bible in a Year podcast. He does a lovely talk on Our Lady and points out two reasons why calling Mary our mother can improve our relationship with Christ, and strengthen our faith life. – he definitely has a talent for keeping your attention. You can watch his  minute video HERE

September 13th St John Chrysostom, Bishop and Doctor of the Church

People who are willing to stand up for what is right and condemn what is evil leave their mark on the world. But they also may find themselves with enemies. John Chrysostom, an eloquent bishop-preacher of the fourth century, understood this.

In 397, John was made the bishop-patriarch of Constantinople. He lived a simple life, giving his wealth over for the building of hospitals, and he set about reforming the clergy and the city. He deposed bishops for buying their way into office. John sold much of the expensive furniture in the bishop’s residence and gave the money to those who were poor. He attacked wealthy people for misuse of their riches. John sought to reform the lax clergy, to straighten out the badly managed budget, and to rid the land of violence. His zeal for charity and justice angered the empress, Eudoxia, and provoked the jealousy of Theophilus, the patriarch of Alexandria. John was impeached and exiled. Even though he had the support of Pope Innocent I, John was exiled even farther away and died en route in 407.

The role of a true prophet is to comfort the disturbed and to disturb the comfortable. John Chrysostom did just that.

  • For some great quotes by this Saint check here : HERE
  • For further information on him check here: HERE


September 14th Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross  

Féile Ghlórú na Croise Naofa


The Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, celebrated every year on September 14th, recalls three historical events: the finding of the True Cross by Saint Helena, the mother of the emperor Constantine; the dedication of churches built by Constantine on the site of the Holy Sepulchre and Mount Calvary; and the restoration of the True Cross to Jerusalem by the emperor Heraclius II.


But in a deeper sense, the feast also celebrates the Holy Cross as the instrument of our salvation. This instrument of torture, designed to degrade the worst of criminals, became the life-giving tree that reversed Adam’s Original Sin when he ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil in the Garden of Eden.

Sourced from:



For a 2 page lesson plan on why we exalt the Cross

just click on the picture.          









September 15th:  Our Lady of Sorrows

Devotion to the Seven Sorrows of Our Lady has its roots in Sacred Scripture and in Christian piety, which always associates the Blessed Mother with her suffering Son. Today’s feast was introduced by the Servites in order to intensify devotion to Our Lady’s Sorrows. In 1817 Pius VII — suffering grievously in exile but finally liberated by Mary’s intercession — extended the feast to the universal Church. The title “Our Lady of Sorrows” focuses on Mary’s intense suffering during the passion and death of Christ. “The Seven Dolors,” the title by which it was celebrated in the 17th century, referred to the seven swords that pierced the Heart of Mary.

The feast is like an octave for the birthday of Our Lady on September 8th. As Mary stood at the foot of the Cross on which Jesus hung, the sword of sorrow Simeon had foretold pierced her soul. Below are the seven sorrows of Mary:

  1. The prophecy of Simeon (Luke 2:25-35)
  2. The flight into Egypt (Matthew 2:13-15)
  3. Loss of the Child Jesus for three days (Luke 2:41-50)
  4. Mary meets Jesus on his way to Calvary (Luke 23:27-31; John 19:17)
  5. Crucifixion and Death of Jesus (John 19:25-30)
  6. The body of Jesus being taken from the Cross (Psalm 130; Luke 23:50-54; John 19:31-37)
  7. The burial of Jesus (Isaiah 53:8; Luke 23:50-56; John 19:38-42; Mark 15:40-47)

For further information check the following:



For a one page printout of a prayer service meditating on the 7 Sorrows just click on the picture to the left.






September 21st:  International Day of Peace / Lá Idirnáisiúnta Tiomanta don Síocháin

Each year the International Day of Peace (IDP) is observed around the world on 21 September. The UN General Assembly has declared this as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire. Never has our world needed peace more.


This year’s theme is Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals. It is a call to action that recognizes our individual and collective responsibility to foster peace. Fostering peace contributes to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and achieving the Sustainable Development Goals will create a culture of peace for all.


Establishing a culture of peace in our schools:

Divide into groups of 5 and ask each group to answer the following 2 questions:

  • What do I want this space (school) to be like each week? Eg, positive, relaxing, calm, etc.
  • In order to achieve this what must we do? Eg. Respect, smile, interact, etc.

This exercise promotes a unified positive sheet where everyone agrees in the end that each of us has a role in making this world a better place.


September 21st:   Matthew the Evangelist / Maitiú, Soiscéalaí


At the time that Jesus summoned him to follow Him, Matthew was a publican, that is, a tax-collector for the Romans. His profession was hateful to the Jews because it reminded them of their subjection; the publican, also, was regarded by the Pharisees as the typical sinner. St. Matthew is known to us principally as an Evangelist. He was the first to put down in writing our Lord’s teaching and the account of His life. His Gospel was written in Aramaic, the language that our Lord Himself spoke. Matthew’s Gospel makes clear that Jesus is the fulfilment of everything said by the prophets in the Old Testament. His book is the first of the four Gospels in the New Testament. The Church established St. Matthew’s feast day as September 21st.





September 23rd    St. Padre Pio / Naomh Padre Pio

St. Padre Pio was an Italian priest who was known for his piety and charity, as well as the gift of the stigmata, which has never been explained. Padre Pio was hearing confessions when he felt pain in his hands and feet. He noticed the stigmata, the wounds of Christ, appearing on his hands and feet. The experience was painful. Bleeding occurred. The wounds smelled of roses, and although they continued to weep, they never became infected. Doctors who later examined the stigmata were amazed at their perfectly round shape. By 1919, word began to spread about Padre Pio’s stigmata and people came from far away to examine him. Padre Pio died on September 23, 1968. His funeral was attended by over 100,000 people. Pope John Paul II recognized Padre Pio as a saint on June 16, 2002. His feast day is September 23rd.  

  • Click HERE for a full length movie about St. Padre Pio
  • For more information on St Padre Pio check HERE
  • For prayers and devotions etc check HERE


September 25th : St. Finbarr


Born in the second half of the 6th century AD, in Achaid Duborcon near Crookstown, Co. Cork, to a slave girl and her metalworker husband from Connacht, who had moved to Munster to find work, St

Finbarr (also known as Barra) is the patron saint of Cork.


As an adult, Finbarr left home with three unidentified ascetics and spent time in Scotland, including on the Isle of Barra, before establishing various hermitages in his native area, notably at Kilclooney and on the island here in Gougane Barra. St Finbarr died at Cloyne in 633 AD and his remains were taken to Cork to be enclosed in a silver shrine in what is now St Finbarr’s Cathedral. 




September 27th Feast Day of St. Vincent de Paul

Féile Naomh Uinseann de Pól


The name of Vincent de Paul is synonymous with compassion and practical help for the needy. As a young priest Vincent was deeply moved by the misery in which many of the people in city slums and remote country areas in France lived. The poor were neglected both spiritually and materially, while the rich lived in luxury. He felt urged to do something to change the situation. Alone he could do very little, so he enlisted the help of many willing volunteers, mostly women, and in 1617 formed them into groups to help the poor in their local areas.


These groups became known as the Confraternities of Charity. Concerned about the spiritual poverty of the country people, four years later, in 1625 he gathered another group around him and the Congregation of the Mission, better known in Ireland as the Vincentian Fathers, came into being. Then in 1633, together with St Louise de Marillac, he co-founded the Daughters of Charity, who would have “for cloister the streets of the city.”  For more information on St. Vincent see: HERE


The Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVP)

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVP) was founded in Ireland in 1844. It is the largest voluntary charitable organisation in Ireland. The Society of St. Vincent de Paul (SVP) charity is a Christian voluntary organisation, working with people experiencing poverty and disadvantage. Inspired by their principal founder, Frederic Ozanam, and patron, St. Vincent de Paul, they seek to respond to the call every Christian receives to bring the love of Christ to those in need: “I was hungry and you gave me food” (Matthew 25). No work of charity is foreign to the Society. They are involved in a diverse range of activities:



Teacher: Young SVP provides opportunities to engage in social action in local communities and encourages personal and social development.  The programme will enable young students to develop projects that will improve the lives of others and gain a better understanding of Social Justice.  For more information check :




September 29th: International Day of Awareness of Food Loss  Waste


 On 29 September 2023, the International Day of Awareness of Food Loss and Waste will be observed for the 4th time.

Reducing food loss and waste is of significant importance as it contributes to the realization of broader improvements to agri-food systems toward achieving food security, food safety, improving food quality and delivering on nutritional outcomes. Reducing food loss and waste also contributes significantly to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, as well as pressure on land and water resources. For more information click HERE

Teacher this might be a good time to do a group work exercise on what we waste daily and how we can reduce our waste.  It could also become a whole school exercise.


September 29th : Feast of the Archangels / Féile na nArdaingeal


Today is the feast of St. Michael, St. Gabriel and St. Raphael.  The liturgy celebrates the feast of these three archangels who are venerated in the tradition of the Church. Michael is the archangel who fought against Satan and all his evil angels, defending all the friends of God. He is the protector of all humanity from the snares of the devil. Gabriel announced to Zachariah the forthcoming birth of John the Baptist, and to Mary, the birth of Jesus. His greeting to the Virgin, “Hail, full of grace,” is one of the most familiar and frequent prayers of the Christian people. Raphael is the archangel who took care of Tobias on his journey.


Teacher the idea of an Angel accompanying each one of us through life is a source of comfort.  Our Angel Guardian may not be revealed to us but the Angel is there none the less.  It could be an exercise in itself to explore what this means, why we have a Spiritual Companion with us and how can that companion enable us to feel less lonely at times whe