Wednesday 16 October 2019

Big turnout for Simon's 'Sacred Cows, Silent Sheep' book launch

A QUEUE of more than one hundred people formed in the Fort Conan Hotel, Duncannon, on Easter Monday for autographs and signings by retired Bishop Willie Walsh and Simon W. Kennedy, author of the new book 'Sacred Cows Silent Sheep'.

More than 300 people packed into the hotel during the afternoon for the launch of Simon Kennedy's new book of twelve short stories about people and events during the past sixty years.

Unlike ordinary book launches the event became what locals said was 'a mini Fleadh' with performances by members of the New Ross and District Pipe Band, Danescastle Ceili Band and Hal's Ceili Band.

In launching the book, Bishop Walsh, told the audience that he and Simon Kennedy first met ten years ago when they were praying together at Lough Derg.

On the issues arising from 'Sacred Cows Silent Sheep', Bishop Walsh told the audience that 'we need people who are honest and courageous to challenge us'. 'It arises out of a belief that much of the institutional failures enacted over the past 60 years were allowed to go unchecked by the lack of courage and honesty of the silent sheep,' he said.

Bishop Walsh explained that the book presents the premise that the silent majority remained silent over the years as the leadership of the country - the Sacred Cows - misled, mismanaged and variously misused power in Ireland from the 1950s through to the present times. The author Simon Kennedy told the audience that this book is 'not a full stop. It's a comma. It's a comma in the sense that 'Sacred Cows Silent Sheep' as a story continues. It doesn't stop'.

As a token of thanks to Bishop Willie Walsh for coming to Duncannon and for launching his book, Simon introduced Tony Molloy, brother of local artist Mary Todd, who presented a painting of the view from Duncannon Fort that the Croppy Boys of 1798 would have had before they were executed there.

Thanks were also extended to the editorial team of Michael Freeman of the Three Sisters Press, Galbally, Editor Helen Ashdown from Clonleigh, Palace, SubEditor Paddy Whelan from Ballinruane, Ballycullane, Researcher Sinead Mckenna, Sin É Design, Dublin for design and layout, and Declan Lyons, Arthurstown, advisory. 'Sacred Cows Silent Sheep' (€14.99) is published by Three Sisters Press, Galbally.

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