Tuesday, 11 October 2016

Tuam Spirit Babies - Tuam Mother and Baby Home CandleLight Vigil

Meeting at the playground

A Candlelight vigil in memory of the inhabitants of the Tuam Bon Secours, Mother and Baby Home will take place on Wednesday 2nd November 2016 (All Soul’s Day) @7pm.
The general public are invited to assemble at the ‘Home Babies Burial Grounds’(the playground) at Dublin Road Housing Estate in Tuam from where there will be a memorial march to the Town Square following the well trodden path of the ‘Home Children.’
As a direct result of the dedicated, campaigning work of Catherine Corless, a preliminary excavation of the site was announced on Friday 31st September. Through her work as a local historian/researcher, Catherine Corless discovered that approx. 800 mothers and babies remains are unaccounted for. Whilst their deaths are recorded, there’s no evidence of their burials and according to eye-witness accounts, it is suspected that the remains are in a mass grave at the site.

Overwhelmed by the story, earlier this year, artist Sadie Cramer embarked on a National Art Project entitled: ‘Tuam Spirit Babies’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=se8FYIpFo_c. She invited the general public to contribute to an exhibition and as a result, in both Tuam and further a field, with survivors and various parties,
discovered the urgent need for a public ritual. Of the hundreds of people who expressed an opinion, the overwhelming desire was for a vigil to take place in Tuam itself.
Not only is the vigil a memorial for the deceased but it is a manifestation of support for the ‘Survivors’, in their quest for justice and recognition; be it the abuses suffered at the ’home’ or their ill treatment when eventually fostered and also their difficulties in accessing their own birth and medical records
and the broader questions surrounding illegal adoptions and vaccination trials.
Following the procession the ‘Tuam Spirit Babies’ exhibition will be launched at the Town Hall which will run until November 16th.

There will be some guest speakers and the evening will culminate in the proposed screening of a film shot in Tuam.

A premiere of the film ‘Children of Shame’ – (To be confirmed)
A 52-minute documentary by Saskia Weber and Nicolas Glimois which was shown on France 2, a French public channel and has yet to be aired in Ireland will be screened pending permission at 8pm on the 2nd floor of the Town Hall.
This film traces the journey of unmarried mothers and missing children. We meet John Rogers, one of the tens of thousands of ill-fated children born in ultra-catholic twentieth century Ireland, a child of shame, guilty of having being born out of the sacred born of matrimony. His mother, like many other young women, spent her life paying the price for giving birth to an illegitimate child, who was torn from her arms shortly after birth. This documentary investigates Ireland’s painful recent history to give the ’children of shame’ a voice. Java Films

Earlier on the same day a remembrance will take place at the summit of Knockma at 11am.

For further information find Tuam Spirit Babies on Facebook. 
Catherine Corless - 085 159 3057 catherinecorless@hotmail.com 
Sadie Cramer - 087 2940458 sadieandmark@eircom.net
http://sadiecramer.blogspot.ie    #Tuamspiritbabies

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