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Bishops voice concern over increased drug use in Ireland

 During their conference this week, the Irish Bishops discussed their concern "in relation to the ever increasing use of cocaine throughout every village and town of our country." In their concluding statement, the Bishops asked the faithful to join with them in prayer and remembrance of those who have suffered, and for their families, due to the use of drugs in our communities. They also asked for prayers in support of those agencies and volunteers who reach out to those who have been damaged by the use of drugs, including their families and friends. They said: "There is no such thing as a 100% safe use of any illegal drug, and this is also true for the euphemistically termed "social / recreational" use of cocaine or other stimulants. There are always high risks of overdose due to contamination, lack of tolerance to purity or the mixing with other drugs, especially alcohol. Bishops encouraged young people and youth leaders within our communities to promote alternative lifestyle choices such as sports, voluntary work and other hobbies. Bishops asked that those who may be faced with the option of using drugs over the Christmas period consider the choices they make; the risks involved; the real harm caused to self and families; and, to make a choice to say 'No'. "Let us all play our part in making this Christmas be a joyful, peaceful and prayerful time without the pain and sadness of drug and alcohol related deaths." Source: Irish Catholic Media Office