Wednesday September 23rd 2015
Today was a fantastic, historical day for the School. Three members of the Irish Air Army came to visit and presented us with a commemorative tri-colour flag and a copy of the Easter 1916 proclamation. We were all very eager to meet the team and learn more about the flag and the proclamation! We assembled in the hall and awaited the representatives. Some of our fellow classmates had been working hard preparing their lines and the choir and Mr. Sutton and Ms. Greene were diligently perfecting Amhran Na Bhfiann for the finale. The feeling of suspense hung in the air- nervousness and chatter filled the hall and we clapped loudly when the visitors came in. I was interested in learning about the flag’s history and what the Defence forces were going to ask us- schools- teachers to prepare for the big day to mark 1916 anniversary next year.
We were told about the importance of respecting the flag and maintaining and keeping it in good condition. We discovered it was raised in March in Co. Waterford and that it was created and designed by a man called Thomas Francis Meagher. This man was a brave man who was born in 1823 and died aged 44 in 1867 in very mysterious circumstances. He was a rebel and was sentenced and exiled to Tasmania. He escaped from Tasmania and ended up in New York City where he joined the American Army and continued to fight for freedom and the rights of the people.
The army representatives asked us to come together in our school and devise and create a proclamation of our own- one that will be hung proudly on the wall by the 1916 proclamation. we need to put our heads together and share ideas about what we envisage for the future of Ireland, what we see and want to have in our future living in Ireland. It is a daunting task but we are up for it here in St. Mary’s S.N.S. It was a brilliant start to our day having the forces visit our school.