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‘Borders and belonging’

Pádraig Ó’Tuama is a poet, theologian, and friend of Dr Kevin Hargaden of the Jesuit Centre for Faith and Justice.  He is also a broadcaster and former leader of the Corrymeela Community of peace and reconciliation in Belfast.

In this interview with Pat Coyle of Irish Jesuit Communications, he tells the story of a fascinating ‘process-workshop’ he developed with his close friend Glenn Jordan, also a theologian and Corrymeela member.

Concerned about the divisive and coarsened discourse during the Brexit referendum Glenn and Pádraig decided to examine the whole issue of ‘borders and belonging’ using the Old Testament story of Ruth as a focal point.

They took the workshop on the road offering it to parishes and festivals across Ireland, Wales, England, Scotland. There was great buy-in from parishioners, with as many as 500 turning up in some places.

Later Pádraig published a book based on the whole experience entitled Borders and Belonging – The Book of Ruth: A Story for Our Times which was co-authored with Glenn. Unfortunately, Glenn died suddenly in June 2020. May he rest in peace.

Click on the podcast link above to listen to Pádraig’s interview about this journey of post-Brexit healing.