Thankful for Health Services

I was listening to a programme on BBC 4 radio this week. It was reporting on events in Ecqador during the Covid 19.

One lady was interviewed. Her husband contacted the virus and died in a few days. She rang the authotrities in her country to come and take away her husband’s body. Only after five days was his decaying body removed. The lady contacted the disease as well but survived. She had two young sons.


Many families suffered like she did. Dead bodies were left lying on the streets for days. The hospitals and normal services were not prepared for the death of so many people.

It is easy to complain about past and present wrongs in our country. I am so thankful after listening to that programme. I am so grateful for the services we are blessed with here in Northern Ireland. These services were put in place by people who believed God in generations past and wanted to help their fellow man. First of all I thank God for the people in our country who believe in God. God has preserved us from sickness and healed many who contacted the disease. Our local minister was told to prepare for many deaths from Covid. There were not any deaths from Covid in our town.

I am thankful for the Health Service, the many men and women who worked in the hospitals. I am thankful for the politicians who had to make difficult decisions in the crisis. I am thankful for the people in our families, villages and towns who supported each other through their fears. I am thankful for the people who know their God and intercede for others.

Let us keep alert and keep praying. God my Heavenly Father delivered me from death from cancer ten years ago through the prayers of many. I believe Jesus heals today. I want to tell others that Jesus will heal our diseases and even prevent us from getting sick. This is good news. Let us pray for workers in the harvest to go to those countries that don’t know of God’s love and care through Jesus sacrifice for us on the cross. The Blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin and sickness.

Black Guillemots Nest Nearby

The Loughshore Rd in Portaferry, Co Down is very popular with local walkers, and more so during the Covid restrictions. There is less vehicle traffic. A family of Black Guillemots have become quit celebrities to local visitors.  They have brought joy to many people during this difficult time when people have had to self isolate.  Getting out in nature among God’s creation brings healing to the soul and mind.  

The Black Guillemot is a small black sea bird with a white patch on each wing. Each has a pointed beak, smooth feathers and red feet. They feed on sea creatures and can dive very deep underwater to feed. It’s a privilege to get to see such wild life nearby.

Black Guillemots have a nest amid the rocks in the wall along the shoreline of Strangford Lough.  They  have become quite tame. Passersby stop to watch them as their family play in the water below. My daughter was driving past last evening. Two birds were sitting on the wall. I asked her to reverse the car to see if we could see them up close.

Amazingly the two birds were not disturbed as we stopped. They didn’t fly off. We were able to take photos of them close up. What a delight.

The waves from storms in February breached the shoreline wall in various places. Some were repaired before the lockdown. The road had to be closed to traffic about a mile along the shore from where we live. The wall was broken and part of the road fell into the sea. The Covid lockdown prevented workers getting to fix it.

Then in July when work was due to start to repair the road, it was discovered that another group of Black guillemots had built nests nearby. They were still feeding their young in the nests. The department of the Environment stepped in and advised work to stop. The repair didn’t go ahead. The workers are waiting till the Black Guillemots are finished reading their young.

The Old Heron Waiting


The tide is high
In Strangford Lough

No room to wade on the shoreline
The water is lapping against the wall
I’m safe here on the ledge
My favourite spot
Jutting out of the water
I’ll wait
And keep warm
With my neck
Sunk between my shoulder blades
I’ll wait
Till the water recedes
I’ll wait
To dart at some tiny fish
Lingering in the shallows
I know their hiding places
I’m too old
To fly from my perch
To find another spot
I’ll leave
Those fishing grounds
To the younger ones.
I’ll wait

The Unnamed Innocent

I was reading this morning an article about the death of George Floyd. The writer encouraged us to remember this man’s name and speak of the injustice he suffered. He died after being pinned to the ground by a police officer. Thank God for mobile phones. His treatment was videoed and broadcast throughout the world.

Violence and protest marches took place in many cities in America and around the world, despite the guidance of our governments not to gather in groups due to the pandemic. People voiced their outrage at the death of George Floyd.

I have been reflecting recently on the importance of one’s name. I believe God calls me by my name. A priest gave me my name when I was baptised as an infant. Then a child was baptised soon after her birth. He called me Angela. This means Messanger, like the Angels, who are messengers of God. He gave me a second name, Petronella. This means solid like a rock. My names are prophetic for my life. I survived as a baby, despite many infants dying from diseases and Ill health. I survived rheumatic fever later when I was nine years old. Untreated this can leave one disabled. I have survived broken limbs. I survived malignant cancer ten years ago. I gave birth to fourteen children. I’m staying alive!

I now tell others about the God who created me in my mother’s womb and who cared for me all the days of my life.

“O Lord, you alone are my hope. I’ve trusted you, O Lord, from childhood. Yes, you have been with me from birth; from my mother’s womb you have cared for me. No wonder I am always praising you!”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭71:5-6‬ ‭NLT‬‬
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:13‬ ‭NIV‬‬

He is God Almighty, his son Jesus and his Holy Spirit, three in one. I am fulfilling my name Angela. God has made me like a rock to survive many difficulties thrown at me. I am fulfilling my name Petronella.

In the Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem is recorded the names of most of the six million Jews who died in the concentration camps. In so far as possible each one is mentioned by name and where he was from. These records are a memorial on the earth to each one who died. He is remembered by his people after him by name. Each one mattered.

Every year on November the eleventh in Britain, leaders and people gather in towns at a Memorial Stone where the names of soldiers who died in World wars are recorded. They are remembered by name. They are given dignity and their memory honored.

A thought came to me the other day. What about the little children who have been aborted in my country since March this year. They have not been given a name. They will not be celebrated by each one’s mother or father. Get rid of the unseen problem. There is no mobile phone to record the lethal injection. There is no photo taken at the child’s birth. No beautiful clothes to cover the child’s nakedness. Northern Ireland was a safe place for me to have my children.

But God sees.
“You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭139:16‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The unborn children return to God who created them . He is caring for them. They will be remembered as those whose blood was shed. There is eternal life. There is a heaven where there will be no more pain. God is loving but he is the God of justice. He saw the unformed body in the womb. He keeps a record in his book. He remembers and he will bring justice for shed blood of the innocent children.

Jesus told us to use his name to pray to the Father in heaven. I am writing this article in Jesus name. There is power in the name of Jesus. His name is the name above all names. In the end every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord.

Beautiful Lupins

It is May 2020. The government has urged us to remain at home until further notice for fear of the spread of the Corona Virus in the country.

It has been unusually sunny and warm here in Ireland for May.   I am not confined to the house. I am out enjoying my garden tending to plants that are breaking ground in the safe warmth of the sun’s rays. They new growth is thirsty. Pot plants already established soon wilt if not refreshed with water.

I had to rescue two lupin plants from an invasion of greenfly. The new shoots were weakened by dry conditions and their position in the shade at the back of the house. The green fly landed and began to eat at the juicy heads of flowers that were reaching up beyond the leaves. I sprayed the offending creatures with soapy water. I watered the plant. It’s leaves grew strong again instead of limp. I moved the plants to the front of the house where the sea air and sunshine will help them recover.

God promises in his word there will always be winter and summer. I’m so happy with this reassurance. I found this winter cold and longer than usual. There were storms and wet, dark days. The wind found any space past door frames and windows. Inside the house was cooler than normal. I am enjoying the windless and warm days of summer.

I can relate to the flowers.  One needs the proper conditions to flourish.  A good place in the sun, fresh air and water, strong against any infection or enemies.   Jesus promised he would give me water that I will not thirst again.  He gives me his Holy Spirt who revives me and strengthens me body, soul and spirit.  


I have tried to grow lupin at my previous homes without success. I am determined to look after the lupins that grow here. I believe they flourish here because the greenfly doesn’t like salty air.

The lupin remind me of days of my childhood. My birthday is in May. I probably was feeling happy at the thought of my birthday coming soon. I noticed the beautiful flowers that appeared on trees and roadside verges as I walked alone to school. I walked past a neighbours garden. This lady had a colourful display of lupins every year, pink, purple, yellow and white. They were in full bloom on my birthday. It’s that time of year again. I am tending my lupin plants.

Gulls Feasting at Strangford Lough

The tide is high at Portaferry today. But instead of troubled waters and sea weed washed up over walls by storms, the sea is calm. The sun is glistening off the water and it’s warmth is concentrated in a bay near our home. Other parts of Northern Ireland are covered in snow. People are not venturing too far. More cold temperatures and storms are forecast.

On my way home I took this video of a flock of sea gulls gathered in the bay to feed off insects in the seaweed disturbed by the rising tide.

Sea gulls flit about, dive and fly. They don’t stand at the edge of the water to feed. They are nervous creatures and rise up out of the water at the least noise.

This scene cheered and warmed my heart today. I hope you enjoy it too.

I enjoy watching birds as Jesus told us. Every time I study them I am reminded of God’s care and blessing.

How Great Thou Art

Praise God for the beautiful display in his creation these recent days in Co Down, Northern Ireland.

Beech trees in gardens and hedgerows are resplendent with leaves of reds, orange,  gold, yellow, and brown.  These trees hold onto their leaves despite wind and rain.

Strangford Lough is full to the brim today.
The Ferry looks imposing on the high water.

To crown a beautiful sunny day we have a full moon tonight.
It’s light is glistening on the waters.
The reflection brightens up my bedroom.

Its good to be alive!

At the end of the day I want to proclaim to God,
How great thou art!
How great thou art.
You are beautiful beyond description.

Too marvellous for words.
I love you Lord!

Getting Older

What a beautiful warm day we enjoyed this Sunday in Ireland. The sun was shining and the sky was blue. The clocks went back an hour. People took the opportunity of waking up with an hour to spare and head to the outdoors. Perhaps we all wanted to enjoy the inviting warmth before darker and colder days approach.

We are like some butterflies, Red Admiral and Tortoiseshell, that came to my garden a few weeks ago. Late blooming sunflowers were lifting their heads to the sun in a sheltered corner of the garden. The butterflies spread their wings to soak up the warmth on the face of the sunflower. The beautiful colours of their wings lit up in the light. They lingered around the sunny corner trying out some other flowers they love, while the sun shone.

Brendan and I took the ferry from Portaferry to Strangford. A large crane was positioned near the terminal. It was available to lift any remaining yachts and boats out of the water to be stored for the winter. The end of the season for letting the wind fill the colourful sails.

We visited an outdoor market in Dundrum. As we walked about the stalls I could feel the warmth of the sun on my back. Everyone was light hearted. Smells of cooking wafted through the air. Both food outlets were doing plenty of business. We discovered a few hidden treasures; a mosaic topped table and chairs was my favourite find. I will restore them and look forward to tea in the garden next spring. Our children warn us not to be getting more stuff. But we don’t listen. Our home will end up as a museum full of items that evoke memories from our younger days, English Rose China, a crystal decanter, a rocking horse or tapes of old movies.

Some visitors called with us this evening. I sat with my friend by the fire. We chatted about our aches and pains. I suggested they can easily be warded off by a Magnisium supplement. I read yesterday from another blogger’s page that Magnesium is a cure for all; pain in limbs, high blood pressure, indigestion and insomnia. I will be keeping a bottle of Milk of Magnesia in the cupboard. There will be warm cups of cocoa at bedtime and Epsom Salt baths often this winter. No flu jab for me!

I was meditating on these words this evening after an active day.

But the godly will flourish like palm trees, and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon. Even in old age they will produce fruit. They will remain vital and green..
So even to old age and grey hairs, O God do not forsake me.
Psalm 92 and 71.

Uncertain Days

An election has just finished in Canada, the British government can’t agree whether to leave the EU and our Northern Irish government refuse to work together.  Despite the confusion in the British parliament a bill to allow Abortion in Northern Ireland was passed. It became law on Tuesday because our assembly in Stormont continue to disagree.

Whether you live in Canada or live in Northern Ireland we cannot depend on our politicians to pass right laws. My only hope is in the name of The Lord.  His government and its peace will never end. Isaiah 9 v 7.
Isaiah prophesied in the same chapter that Unto us a child is born, Unto us a son is given and The Government will be on his shoulders.
Many people are dismayed and fearful at this time.  Isaiah was as well.  God told him not to believe conspiracies, but to make The Lord of Heaven’s Armies holy in his life. He is the one to fear and he will keep him safe. 
The same is true for us today. I believe in God.  He is faithful to His promises.  He loves those He created.  He is merciful.  I know his faithfulness and love. He has cared for me and blessed me with a good husband and fourteen children. He delivered and healed me from 4 th stage cancer.  He is alive and true. He is the One to fear.

If you are upset and disappointed in life today, put your trust in the God of the Heavenly armies.  His name is Jesus.  Call to him.  He will hear and act.  

Testimony of God’s Love

My daughter Nora lost her wedding ring on Sunday 22nd September. She was taking part in the Belfast half marathon in aid of Heart and Stroke Charity, Northern Ireland.

Nora was happy and relieved to get across that finishing line! She was back home when she discovered her wedding ring was missing. She had taken it off and put it in her pocket during the marathon as her finger had swollen.

  1. She was upset. She prayed with her friend for the return of her ring. She sent a message on Twitter and Facebook. She returned to the area where she thought she may have lost it. The ground was muddy and there was no sign of it.

Here is the message she sent.

So delighted to have done the Belfast Half Marathon this morning 💥. The only problem was that I lost my wedding ring somewhere around the finish line – at the Stroke Association tent 😰 if by some miracle someone comes across it maybe you’d let me know? It has my name and wedding date engraved on the inside…. any shares appreciated.

You never know – miracles can happen! #BelfastMarathon Ormeau Park

The message went viral. She called me in the afternoon. She was tearful. We prayed again.

Next morning we got a message from a friend to tell us Nora’s ring was found. It was handed in to the organisers of the marathon. We text Nora to tell her. She hadn’t checked her other messages because she was in a hurry to attend work.

She was overwhelmed at the response to her message on media. She got her miracle.

The local newspaper the News Letter picked up on her story. BBC Evening Extra called her and asked her to join them in the studio to tell her story.

Colin, her husband collected the ring and joined Nora at the radio studio. There was joy as the presenter interviewed Nora and Colin about the recent events. He asked Colin to put the ring back on her finger. All of Northern Ireland listeners heard the good news story.

Nora got her miracle.

I was reading this message today. “I will be your God throughout your lifetime. I have created you and cared for you since you were born.” Isaiah 46 v 3

God cares for Nora and Colin. He cares about their marriage. He demonstrated his love for them publicly. Their covenant of marriage was re confirmed before thousands of listeners. Nora continues to be overwhelmed.