With a new year dawning, Fr. Brian D’Arcy reflects with Kay Doyle on the year that has passed, and looks forward to embracing whatever opportunities lie in store for him in 2017.

The freshness of a late winter’s morning breathes freely outside St. Gabriel’s Retreat in The Graan, in Enniskillen, where Fr. Brian D’Arcy currently resides, and in his signature effervescent form, the hugely popular priest is counting his blessings as he looks forward to finding out what 2017 has in store for him.

“What I would like to know is who changed it from being twelve months in a year to what now seems like three and a half,” he chuckles. “Time is whizzing by far too quickly. I was only getting used to writing 2016 and now I have to change it to 2017.

“As John Lennon famously said, ‘Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans’. And as you get older time certainly passes by more quickly. But you can’t dwell on that, you have to make the most of what you have here and now.

briandarcynew“January is a great time for reflection, and planning, and the seasons actually allow us that opportunity. We should all build in time in our lives to think, and reflect.

“With the end of Advent comes that opportunity for a fresh start. There is little point in making resolutions, as they rarely work. If you really want to make a change in your life, then the only person that can do that is yourself.

“Every month, I take a day off and I go to Knock. I abandon the phone in the car and spend the day walking, thinking and reflecting. And it is here in such a spiritual atmosphere that I make my plans. Life is like climbing a mountain. You never see the journey when you walk ahead with your head down but if you bother to look around, you see what a fantastic journey you are actually on, and the great beauty around you.
“Life is like that, sometimes we need to stop, and look around and appreciate what we have. If you feel that you need to make a change, then only you have the power to that, there is no point in living being miserable.”

Continue reading in this year’s New Year Annual