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Ireland - 2000
In September of 2000, we took a two week tour of Ireland. Our starting point was Shannon Airport on the west coast. Shannon Airport is located at the southern end of County Clare on the west coast. Flying into Shannon, I got my first glimpse of the Irish countryside with its glowing green patchwork of the fields separated by stone walls.
Cliffs of Moher
Heading out of Doolin, our plan was to see the Poulnabrone Dolmen and then head on Galway city. Along the road we came to this ruined church which turned out to be a special place. It's built over a ceremonial mound from prehistoric times. To me, it's fascinating that the people of 4000 years ago, as well as the people of 1000 years ago, find the same site sacred. I too felt a special sense of peace at the sight.
In the church yard, we met an gentleman named Paddy McNamara who has done extensive research about the church and shared with us some of the special points about the church. He pointed out to us the symbol of the Knights Templar and the knight head pictured below. He also told us the rocks visible in the church yard were tombstones from freedom fighters killed in an 18th century uprising against the British. The uprising failed and the families were allowed to bury their dead in the church yard but were not permitted to mark the graves with the names of the dead.
|Symbol of the Knights Templar||