by Niamh Bn. Uí Loinsigh
September (Meán Fómhair which translates as “middle of harvest) Celebrating St. Michael’s Day in Old Ireland
by Bridget Haggerty
Throughout the Celtic lands, Michaelmas – September 29, marked the end of the harvest. This was the time that farm folk calculated how many animals they could afford to feed over the winter and how many would have to be sold or slaughtered and salted down in order to preserve the meat.
In addition to livestock fairs, rural folk attended hiring fairs which were especially important for farm laborers looking for winter employment after the harvest.
Michaelmas was also one of the regular quarter-days for settling rents and accounts; often, since this was also the time of the “geese harvest”, many a farmer paid off his accounts with a brace or more of plump birds from the flock hatched in the spring. Traditionally, on St. Michael’s Day, Irish families sat down to a roast goose dinner.
Michaelmas also marked the end of the fishing season, the beginning of the hunting season, the traditional time to pick apples and the time to make cider. In County Waterford, it was also the end of the tourist season. This gave rise to a strange custom observed by those in the holiday trade – they held a procession to the beach and cast an effigy of St. Michael into the sea as a symbolic protest against loss of earnings.
In many parts of Ireland, farmers gave geese as gifts to the poor and sold the down as fillings for mattresses and pillows. In several towns, Michaelmas was the day to elect a mayor. As the story goes, it was the tradition that the Mayor of Dublin could not be sworn in until after his counterpart in Drogheda. Where this custom came from, no-one seems to know.
Julianstown Tidy Towns
A word of thanks to all in our community who had the village looking splendid when the Meath Co. Co. Pride of Place arrived in Julianstown. A lot of work was carried out cutting hedges, clearing off footpath, houses painted and the Sunflowers, Dahlias, Wildflowers looked stunning. Well done all. Next on the agenda is the judging of our Village Garden for the An Taisce Green Flag Award – this takes place in early September and if you call into the garden, you can either give a hand with the weeding or just admire the tremendous work being done there. Bring the children and check out all the butterflies we have flying about and if you want to know their names, check out the poster which gives all their names. Can you spot the Red Admiral, Painted Lady, or the Peacock?
World Clean-up Day Ireland 2021
World Clean-up Day Ireland 2021 is on Saturday 18th September. With the Covid situation improving, and restrictions being lifted all the time, the 18th September may be our first opportunity in a long time to show our worth as a Community. It has been a long time since we worked together for the benefit of our Community. Please keep this date in mind!
Bridge in Julianstown The bridge in Julianstown was hit by a motorist exiting the Duleek junction in the early hours of Tuesday morning during the bad fog. Fortunately, the motorist escaped serious injuries, but the bridge wall is now in a very dangerous state of repair.
Community Alert – Beware of Scammers A number of local Residents have reported getting calls/emails from persons purportedly representing Amazon in respect of outstanding depts. This is a SCAM. Garda Stations are also getting them. Scammers don’t discriminate, they SCAM everybody, if they get the chance. Do not engage with these Scammers. Report this activity immediately to the Gardai. One local Family believe that their landline may have been cloned by scammers, with many others getting calls from what appears to be from their landline number. If they miss the original call, they end up ringing back the local number asking why they were called earlier. This is clearly a SCAM, which the Gardai are aware of since this was first mentioned here last week, several other Community Members have been in contact to say that they were also worried about the escalation in attempted SCAMS that they have witnessed first hand themselves. If you believe you may have fallen victim to this or any other scam, report the matter to your local Garda station. Please be vigilant at all times, and report anything suspicious to the Gardai. Dial 999 or 112 for best results.
Sincere Sympathy The sincere sympathy of Julianstown Tidy Towns is extended to the Conroy Family in Laytown on the tragic loss of their son David. Ar dheis De go raibh h-anam dilis!
St.Mary’s Catholic Church, Julianstown Fr. Brendan Ferris – First Holy Communion takes place on Saturday 16th October in for 2nd Class 2020-2021 (Ms Rogan and Mrs Casey’s former classes) Further details will be provided at a later stage. Fr. Brendan would also welcome any suggestions and ideas for any maintenance issues in the Churches.
St. Mary’s Church of Ireland – A word from Rev. Katharine Poulton
Looking ahead! The Harvest Thanksgiving will be held on Sunday 26th September. Because we are still not sure what restrictions will be in place then, there will be no gathering to decorate the church, but those who wish to bring an arrangement of fruit, flowers or other produce for a windowsill may do so on Saturday 25th between 2 and 3 pm. We will also gather items for Drogheda Homeless Aid, details of which will come later. Because of this there will be no charity collection in September but the loose collection on the day of the harvest will be divided between the parish and the Bishops Appeal for world development.
In October, the service of Compline will once again take place, online, most Tuesday evenings at 8pm. – Lucita Shorter has sold 11 of the Christmas Rings and has 7 left so if you would like one you may need to move quickly to secure it at a price of €15.
If you would like a pastoral visit, or Holy Communion at home, please let me know. Ringing the mobile number is more satisfactory that the Rectory landline one!
How many butterflies can you see in the garden?
Amazing begonias at The Lime Kiln