Video: To the Real Ireland—With Love

Recently, I poured heart and soul into what was for me, at any rate, a major project in terms of Ireland.

That project is a big video. More precisely two videos, as it comes in a Short Version (48 minutes) and a Long Version (over three hours!). And for reasons that should become clearer below, the video is something of a personal milestone for me and my online work.

Now, the Short Version is above. Rather than say much more about it, I simply quote some lines from a somewhat pleading letter originally addressed to a few folk close to my heart.

While posting these things in public is a trifle odd, it may perhaps helpfully convey some of the intense personal feeling I have for this project. I have edited the original letter slightly, though, for purposes of public consumption:

I don’t normally write letters like this, but this particular video is important to me.

It feels—at least feels—different to any Irish video I have ever done. I find myself highly ‘pumped up’ about it—and also worried about succumbing to the temptation of too much pride!

But as notoriously unreliable as such ‘pumped up’ feeling is, it does seem like one of the two most significant video efforts I have ever made. 

Also, it’s not just about Ireland, but contains other themes. Eg. Tomberg, Capitalism, Supernatural Grace, Angels, and the Mystery of the Sacraments and Sacramentals. Rosary, Eucharistic Adoration, Holy Water, etc—what they did for Ireland in the past and can still do for Ireland and the world.

Slowly arising out of an organic process these past few weeks, I have focussed on my intense love for the Ireland and the Irish, as well as, of course, my concern for the current tragedy of this nation.

The end result, I feel, expresses this love better than any video before. 

But it also has material that is potentially more contentious and provocative—to the point that, frankly, I feel vulnerable about it. 

Who am I to tell the Irish not simply how remarkable their culture (still) is, but also to suggest what I feel is going wrong?

Still, I trust the organic prayerful process I’ve been through with this video (again in two versions). I trust it so much I take this unusual step of writing to [ … ] tell you it’s important to me, in a way that almost no other video has been.

With that I want to ask a favour: that some of you who might not normally watch it, consider watching at least a small part of the ‘Short Version’ . . .

Asking this feels audacious! I know how busy many of you are. 

Alas, I want to go further.  Because the ‘Short Version’ is highly reliant on visuals and titles. If any of you consider watching at least part of the ‘Short Version’, rather than simply listening to it, I’d be even more grateful. This is partly because the ‘Short Version” could seem disjointed without the visuals. It’s like a ‘glorified trailer’. 

Punchier, but with the danger of not making complete sense when only listened to. But it’s more than just that. I think I’ve expressed something of my soul in this combination of words and visuals, more than I usually capture.

It could even help to explain to some of you who I am and why I do the strange things I do …

This video then, in both versions, has become very personally important to me, almost like no other. But again I do appreciate the busy lives you live. I am really not expecting anything and hope this doesn’t sound too pushy. Whatever you watch—however you watch it—I’m grateful!

I also have hopes that over the years the video will steadily build viewers (as many of my videos do) and maybe make a small difference in Ireland. Here is why I have lavished all this time and attention on it—hundreds of hours …

Finally, I want to say that if you are receiving this, you are in my heart and prayers in a special way. I may seem to forget you, as I really struggle to keep up. 

Things like this video have consumed nearly all my attention for weeks now — well along, with some other pressing personal things. This mystifies some, I know. How could a crudely produced video like this take so much?! But it’s true. My lifeblood has been poured into this, round the clock . . . 

Somehow I wanted to share this [ … ] I would, of course, be very grateful not only for any time at all you put into watching the video—but also for your prayers for its success. And, of course, any efforts to share it with friends and on social media. 

Thank you! God bless you all, friends.

To these personal lines, I will just add that the Short Version has had astonishing success by my usual modest standards—generating nearly 4000 views in a fortnight and maybe more importantly well over a hundred subscribers and dozens of most kind comments.

The Long Version can also now be found at YouTube—but that is the subject of the next post.

Cryptically, I close by noting that posting a video with a thumbnail of the Irish flag with the Sacred Heart was a deeply satisfying act for me!

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