There is a special aroma in the air at the seaside; something that tells you that the sea is near; something other than the seagulls! We headed off to Eastbourne with Fr Willie’s parish of St Mary’s and St Michael’s on Commercial Road for a day trip to experience that distinctive feeling of being near the sea.
We had Mass in Our Lady of Ransom Catholic Church in Grange Road, in Eastbourne and it was lovely to see Fr Raglan, the parish priest there who warmly welcomed us. Fr Raglan has been involved with Deaf Community for many years and it was great to see him signing again.
Fr Willie reminded us of the smell of our own churches, of St Mary’s and St Michael’s, of the Cathedral Hall and of Our Lady of Ransom; that familiar scent, different in every church but always making us welcome. That feeling of being in the right place, at peace and being accepted. Our group came from many different parishes but wherever we go we are always welcome in God’s house, Deaf or hearing, old or young, familiar or unfamiliar that welcome is there for all of us.
After a sumptuous lunch in a local hotel was all headed off to explore Eastbourne, some visiting the RNLI museum situated on the seafront, some headed to the pier for some fun on the slot machines while others strolled along with an ice-cream and sat in the bandstand.
Our journey back had many nodding heads as the sea air took effect on our enjoyable day.
Our grateful thanks to Fr Willie Skehan for organising the trip and to Fr Raglan Hay-Will for making us so welcome in his parish.