Ireland's Eye: What's going on in the old sod this week
A look at news from around Ireland
App for Vocations
A FORMER Coalisland priest is turning heads around the world by using the latest technology to increase vocations.
Father Paddy Rushe, now based in the Holy Redeemer Parish in Dundalk, has developed a new iPhone app, launched in a bid to attract new priests to the church.
The self-styled “gadget priest,” who is the national coordinator for vocations, said the church should be at the forefront of new technology.
“I am a bit of a techie and I am on Twitter and Facebook. The church needs to be there, accessible to all,” Rushe says.
“I thought that the app would be a novelty, something that would grab the attention, and it has turned out that way.”
His tech savvy approach has already brought God’s message to almost 3,000 people across the world, from Mexico to India.
“The app performs multiple functions. It acts as an information portal where people can find out information about diocesan priesthood in Ireland,” he said.
The app also includes a frequently asked questions section, covering areas from functions, salary and qualifications.
“It’s a list of questions we have built up over the years dealing with people who make these enquiries,” he said.
“It’s a good starting point because it allows you to delve deeper into some of these issues, and most importantly there’s contact information.
“It’s all about beginning a journey. I don’t think there is any substitute in vocation ministry for real-time contact. That’s where the most important work is done.”
One of the most novel features of the app is the inclusion of a “vocations test” and “celibacy quiz,” with the option of publishing the results to Facebook.
The app is now available to download for free from iTunes app store.
ATHLONE District Court Judge Seamus Hughes has warned of the serious damage being caused by heroin in this area and called for tough action to be taken against the drug lords who supply it.
"There is a trail of destruction being left behind by drug dealers," commented Hughes during a case involving an 18-year-old heroin addict at the district court.
"It is heartbreaking to see people like this young man in court. I fear dearly for the lives of these young people.
"The toughest possible action needs to be taken against the drug lords who are supplying heroin in this town. They should be hounded out of the place."
Garda (police) Inspector Aidan Minnock said he agreed fully with the judge's remarks.
Another recent case involved a 26-year-old woman who is on a methadone treatment program but is continuing to take heroin. During this case, the judge said he had noticed an increase in the number of females coming before him with serious drug problems.
"Regrettably, I'm seeing more girls coming in here to court. Physically, you deteriorate so much after taking heroin. You develop twitches and become emaciated -- and that's just one aspect of it. It has such an adverse physical impact on your body," he told the defendant.
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