4 responses to “In the beginning”

  1. “…This era must be revisited and the truth fully revealed for mature Irish {ALL} women to reclaim their true sense of feminine passion and romance and younger women to see that the freedoms they enjoy had to be earned by courageous women, who set out to break the virgin/whore stranglehold of the Irish Catholic church over women’s sexuality and sensuality.”

    — Jay Flavin

    I resonate strongly with Flavin’s words.

    I hope this forum will swell to embody many stories from women and men who have experienced life under the hand of Catholicism and her Nuns within the Magdalene Laundry or, “The Pines” as it was called in Adelaide, Australia.

    The Good Shepherd Convent, or Magdalen Assylum, first opened in Cork Ireland on the 29th July 1872. It was the site of an orphanage and a Magdalene laundry until the late 1970s.

    The shocking imprisonment of young girls for ‘subjective dishonor’ seems inhumane for the 20th century, yet, it happened! and continues to in sheep’s clothing or cloaked habit forms.

    In saying this, there are positive stories to be shared here too, I certainly have some myself – full of humor and gutzo intertwined with the fear and sorrow of that 14 yr. old little girl. I personally gained some from the experience in ways that may seem surreal to some. Yet, an ache deep within my soul remains to this day. The shame, dishonor and continual disgrace………… and yet I was the one who went thro Hell within the walls of “Heaven” to come out -metaphorically- schizophrenic from what I gained and what I pained.

    Please write, write and write openly and freely from your heart and allow your story to flow, be it good, bad or ugly!!!

    Magdalene Sister,

  2. Yes, I thought the same thing R. what a fitting metaphor! Today, I know I survived because I had a determined, impenetrable, spirit.

    Penance, ha ha Adele……… that was good.

  3. Sorry about the photo! Name your penance!

  4. i can smell the disinfectant and hear the doors slamm and lock as if it were yesterday. I’m glad you got your head back in the photo.( It was quite a metaphor to see this first posting with a headless girl.)
    How did we survive this horror? Talk about abreiviated childhood

... a project to document and commemorate stories of Australians who as children experienced institutional care