Archive for July, 2011

Pat’s Corner – 27/7/11

by Pat Brosnan

The Taoiseach’s Outburst

One of the current topics which was discussed by me and my fellow panellists in the Exchange programme on West Limerick 102 Radio last Thursday morning was the amazing outburst by the Taoiseach Enda Kenny in which he allegedly denounced the Vatican and laid all the blame on the Holy See officials for having allegedly downplayed the clerical abuse which had happened and for deliberately concealing and covering it up.

He allegedly accused the Vatican of putting the power and primacy of the Church rather than that of the victims first by concealing what went on in Catholic Dioceses and institutions which were run by religious orders and clergy. According to media reports the Taoiseach in his denunciation used some long-winded phrases such as “dysfunction”, disconnection” “elitism” and “narcissism” which even those of us who have been writing for the media for over sixty years would find it difficult enough to understand in the context of the matter in which they were expressed.

It seems extraordinary that Enda Kenny, considering where he comes from, with a strong Fine Gael background, a party, more than all other political organisation in the country which has been so religiously conservative and so closely allied to the Catholic Church going back to the foundation of the State.

Those of us of an older generation, if we turn our minds back to the Civil War, will be aware even though it happened before our time that the Church and many of the clergy (not all of them) supported the Free State Government and army and never even condemned the most outrageous, cold blooded and deliberate atrocity that happened in Ireland during the 20th century – the killing, by the Free State Army, of eight Republican political prisoners whom they tied up over a mine and blew to smithereens on a March morning in 1923 at Ballyseedy Cross near Tralee.

Then in later years during the thirties we also know that General Owen O’Duffy, who had been Chief of Police in the Free State Government, went around the country with the Blueshirt organisation on a recruiting campaign for volunteers to go to help Franco’s Fascist (Falangest) forces in their revolution against the existing Socialist Government in the Spanish Civil War. O’Duffy and the Blueshirts portrayed Franco’s Army as upholders of the Catholic faith fighting against communism, so in this they were probably partly right. More of Franco’s allies came from Italy and Germany, both of which countries shortly afterwards set in motion World War II.

Franco’s forces eventually won the brutal Spanish Civil War with the help of the Irish Blueshirts and the encouragement of the Irish Church who believed the Spanish Civil War to be a Catholic Crusade.

Actually many Irishmen fought on either side in the Spanish Civil War but that of course is another story, water under the bridge as they say.

The foregoing paragraphs have only been included to illustrate the long existing mutual admiration between the Fine Gael party and its predecessors and the Catholic Church.

Mr. Kenny’s outburst opens up a strange and unusual paradox, that the leader of the Fine Gael party would make such an unusual, blistering, emotional and highly charged verbal onslaught on those in charge at the Vatican is just beyond belief. However one would like to believe that he had no ulterior motive and that he had no intention of using this to generate any extra mileage for himself and his party and that it was motivated by sympathy for those who suffered rather than anything else. But my own belief is that such a highly charged outburst was both untimely and unnecessary, particularly at a time when the Church is already under siege and unprecedented pressures in this country with a concerted campaign, one could almost use the word conspiracy, by the so-called liberal agenda to undermine its teachings and institutions.

Mr. Kenny must be very much aware of this and he must also be aware of the joint responsibility of both the State as well as that of the Church for the welfare of both children and adults who were committed to the care of religious orders who were running the institutions.

For the Taoiseach to solely blame the Church for all that has happened and make accusations of a deliberate cover-up and conspiracy against the Vatican is both unfair, unreasonable and unworthy of the leader of this country, irrespective of his high rating in a recent opinion poll.

There are some, no doubt, would suggest that it took much courage for the Taoiseach to make such a statement. But does it really take courage to swim with the tide of popular public opinion and go with the flow rather than pursue a more responsible course which in the words of a former Taoiseach, late Jack Lynch, had described once as being “sane and safe” in another context.


80th Birthday

Congratulations to Patsy O’Sullivan of Toureendonnell who recently celebrated his 80th birthday at home with members of his family and grandchildren, sons-in-law and relatives.

Patsy is still in great form and well able to go about his usual daily tasks. Wishing him many more happy years and good health.



Music lovers, singers and followers of dancing and other kinds of traditional entertainment from West Limerick as well as other parts of the county and outside areas will be coming to Athea this weekend during the August bank holiday period. A big programme of events has been lined up with something to suit all tastes. It is hoped that the weather will be fine and that all visitors as well as local people will enjoy themselves.


Death of Eileen O’Donnell

The recent death of Eileen O’Donnell (nee McCoy) of Templeathea was widely regretted throughout Athea parish and further afield. She had only been sick for a short time prior to her passing and had even visited relatives in England just a few weeks ago.

Eileen, who worked as a home help, was a very dedicated and caring person with those whom she looked after and she was also a well liked member of the local community.

The removal took place from Kelly’s Funeral Home to St. Bartholomew’s Church on Monday night of last week where many people called to pay their respects. Her funeral to Holy Cross cemetery on Tuesday afternoon, following Requiem Mass, was also well attended.

Sympathy is extended to her daughter Sharon, her brother, sister, her in-laws and her other relatives. May her soul rest in peace.

Sadly Eileen was the fifth member of the McCoy family to die including her mother, two sisters and brother within the past number of recent years. Their father Stephen predeceased them several years ago.

May all their souls rest in peace.


Late Jude O’Sullivan

The death of Jude O’Sullivan of Glin which occurred unexpectedly was very much regretted by many of those from Athea parish who attended Tarbert Comprehensive School with him, some of whom were his close friends. By all accounts he was very well liked among his peers. Our own Breda, who lives in Canada, told me on the phone during the week that she and a couple of Tarbert girls also knew him well when they lived in London and when he was also there.

She told me too that he was a good friend of former Limerick County team football goalkeeper Mike McLoughlin who now lives in Tarbert with his wife Caroline and their family.

Sympathy is extended to Jude’s family members and other relatives on their sad loss. May his soul rest in peace.

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Knockdown News – 27/7/11

by Peg Prendeville

At last the temperatures have improved a bit but we still wait for a decent summer.

Knockdown is coming alive again with lots of activity around the shop. Meanwhile the Killeaney Grounds are looking well and the flowers are adding a bit of colour.

Both Athea with its Races and Glin with lots of activities in aid of Muscular Dystrophy Ireland were very busy last weekend and luckily the weather was kind. We hope that everybody enjoyed themselves.

Next Sunday brings its own excitement with Limerick and Kerry meeting in the football. We probably know what will happen but sure we have to keep hoping to make some more history!

There are a very few of the Loughill/Ballyhahill Annuals left to sell so if you haven’t got one already please make sure that you do, before it is too late. They are in the Knockdown Shop.

It being holiday time there always seems to be a lull everywhere at this time of year. People slow down, all the usual committees take it easy and it is nice to be able to just do the day to day business without having any deadlines but it does make life hard when it comes to filling news columns as there is not a lot to say!

Needless to say is that everybody was shocked at the awful horror in Norway last weekend. Norway is never much in the news so it must be especially traumatic for the people there. So maybe it is a good thing that things are quiet here and we have no shock stories to tell. Behind every cloud there is a silver lining, after all.


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By Carrig Side – 27/7/11

by Tom Aherne

Welcome to our weekly look at events making the news around the locality on this mild and misty Sunday afternoon. No great pick up in the weather in the past week with showers and cold temperatures  and little sunshine. We hope this coming week will be a lot better as we bid farewell to July. We welcome a new moon on Sunday and look forward to the August Bank Holiday weekend.
Last Sunday’s Mass in Saint Mary’s was an Anniversary Mass for the late Michael and Margaret Kennelly (my grandparents) from Glensharrold. The Church Gate Collection was in aid of the Desmond Complex Newcastle West. A total of €560 was collected for the Saint Molua’s Well Project at Neary’s Bar Ardagh, on Wednesday night last. Work has commenced there and donations are still very welcome.
A great win for Limerick footballers over Wexford on Saturday evening in Portlaoise and a match in the quarter final in Croke Park after all those years of heartbreak. A great display from Johnny McCarthy yet again and Jim Donovan made a late entry and played his part. The hurlers put in a good performance but missed chances cost them, but overall they had a good year.

The death has taken place of Margaret (Peggy) Lynch nee Leamy, Kilbradern, Shanagolden, at Limerick Regional Hospital on Monday 18th July. She was a native of Borrigone and was 79 years old and a homemaker. She was very well known around the area and always out and about calling to her neighbours and friends. Her life was touched by a lot of sorrow, adversity and ill health by the loss of her husband Tom thirty four years ago and also her son John. Peggy was a woman of great faith and prayer helped her overcome these great losses. She loved her flowers and her garden and the game of Bingo in the local halls. She was a dedicated card player and known far and beyond in card playing circles. The residents around Kilbradern Cross will be a lot more lonely and sadder as a result of her passing and she will be sadly missed.
Her remains were removed from Madigan’s Funeral Home, Shanagolden, to Saint Kyran’s Church, Coolcappa, on Thursday evening last. Father Mullane P.P. celebrated her Requiem Mass, assisted by her card playing friend Father Paddy Bowen P.P. Athea. It was a celebration of Peggy’s life and a ceremony she would be proud of on a lovely sunny day. Family members assisted in the readings, prayers of the faithful and the offertory. Symbols of Peggy’s life including deck of cars, flowers and family photographs were also taken up to the Altar. Father Mullane, in his homily, paid her a nice tribute, touching on her faith and her prayers and her strength in overcoming adversity in her life. Her daughter Mary in conclusion thanked everybody who helped the family down the years, and all who were so kind to her mother in recent years.
Her coffin left the Church as Ann Marie sang “A mother’s love is a blessing” and past the lovely bed of red roses, to the Hearse.
Burial took place in Kilbradern Cemetery close to Peggy’s home on Friday 22nd July. Sympathy to her daughter Mary, son Michael, sister Kitty, brother Michael, grandchildren Hannah and Ben and extended family. May she rest in peace.

Congratulations and best wishes to Evelyn Scanlon, Ballydoorlis, Kilcolman, daughter of Mary and Michael and Noel O’Brien, Strand who were married in Saint Colman’s Church, Kilcolman on Saturday 16th July. The Reception was held in the Woodlands House Hotel Adare.
Happy birthday wishes are extended to Jack O’Grady, Glenbawn, on his 87th and Patsy O’Sullivan Toureendonnell on his 80th.
Both gentlemen have close links with the parish and continued good health in the future.

The following are the lottery results from Peadar’s Bar, Ardagh, on Monday 18th July. The numbers drawn were 3, 8, 21, 22, and there was no Jackpot winner.
Congratulations to the lucky dip winners as follows.
€60 Charlie and Peg O’Connor, Ardagh
€60 Thomas and Andrew c/o Thatch Bar
€60 Joyce Tracey, Ardagh
€30 Joan Buckley, Kilcolman
€30 Kitty Maloney, Ardagh
€30 Nancy Barrett and family, Glenastar.
Next week’s draw takes place at Foley’s Bar, Reens, Ardagh and the Jackpot will be €9,200.
Fleadh Cheoil Na Mumhan was held in Ballincollig, County Cork from the 11th to the 15th July 2011 and it was the 51st occasion of the event. The O’Connor family, Kilcolman, have a long association with Comhaltas and have attended and participated in numerous County, Munster, and All Ireland Fleadh’s. The late Jackie was a great supporter, along with his wife Mary Aherne, and their interest rubbed off on their children Jacqueline and John at a young age. They are active members of the Templeglantine Branch and have been prizewinners down the years and Jacqueline is the present Oifigeach na nÓg officer at Munster Board level. In memory of Jackie the family presented a new Perpetual Cup for the U-12 Concertina event at the recent event in Cork. I am delighted to report that the Cup will remain in West Limerick for the coming year as it was won by a young Tournafulla musician. Jacqueline on behalf of the family presented the Cup to Diarmuid Curtin who is a member of the Tournafulla Branch. Congratulations to Diarmuid on his success and well done to the family for donating the Cup which will keep Jackie’s memory alive in the music he loved so much.
Congratulations to John Doody, Carrigkerry Village, winner of the Vice Captain’s (John Devine) Prize at Newcastle West Golf Club in Rathgonan, Ardagh, with a net score of 62. Jason O’Donovan Ardagh was 2nd with a net score of 67 and Ivan Neary Ardagh was 3rd with a net score of 69.
Ardagh native Pat Molyneaux wishes to thank everybody for their sponsorship for the headshave held in Askeaton during the Super Valu Wild Cats Big Event. The total collected was €1,570 and the charities who benefitted were Crumlin Children’s Hospital and the Oncology Unit, Limerick Regional Hospital.
Blackrock defeated Saint Kieran’s by 2-10 to 1-7 in the County Junior B Football League Final in Ballygran on the 12th of July.
Eoin Moran was on the Limerick U-15 panel that won the Humphrey Kelleher Plate final in Millstreet on Saturday 16th July. They defeated Tipperary by 3-7 to 0-6 in the final.
Gerard Kiely and Shane Lynch were on the Limerick U-16 panel that reached the final of the Munster Football Competition at Hospital on Saturday 16th July. North Kerry defeated them by 1-14 to 2-10 in the final.
I really enjoyed a story and a song on West Limerick Radio last week-end. Father Paddy Bowen P.P. Athea was Pat O’Donovan’s guest on the very popular programme. A native of Ballingarry, he was Parish priest of Ardagh-Carrigkerry before his move to Athea a few years ago. A noted hurler in his youth he is also a lovely singer and storyteller. He sang three songs on the show, “The Fair of Cappamore”,”The Garden where the Praties Grow” and “Old Shep”.
He was a dashing half back on the playing field and I recall his fine display for Ballingarry in a West Limerick hurling final in 1969. They defeated Killeedy in the final and the shouts from the crowd was “good man Bowen”
His sandy coloured hair and his artistry with the camán made him stand out that day.
It was a very enjoyable show and well done to all involved.
The show is on the air on Saturday 3:00pm – 4:00pm and repeated Sunday mornings from 7:00am – 8:00am
The Gortadruma dump is closed to the public from Monday 25th July to Friday 5th August. It will re-open to the public at 8am on Monday 8th August. The closure is required to enable essential maintenance to be carried out.
The annual graveyard Mass will be celebrated in Ardagh Cemetery on the eve of the feast of Saint Molua, Wednesday 3rd August at 7:30pm. The Rosary will be recited during the rounds of the Blessed Well after the Mass.
The August Bank Holiday Hooley in aid of West Limerick 102 Community Radio will be held in the Devon Inn Hotel on Monday 1st August. Music by Tony Kearney and the Wee Amigos, and dancing from 9:30pm. Admission €10 and a raffle will be held.
The next car boot sale and indoor market will be held on Sunday 7th August in Newcastle West Community Centre from 9am to 3pm. All support for the fundraisers will be appreciated.
Ardagh-Carrigkerry Parish are holding a collection for Trocaire in support of the people suffering starvation in East Africa on this coming week-end Saturday and Sunday 30th/31st July. Money can be put into the Offertory Basket during the Mass.
Charity Céilí in aid of Irish Cancer Society at Fr. Casey’s Hall, Abbeyfeale, on Saturday, August 6th from 9:30pm – 1am with the Striolán Céilí Band. Tea will be served. Brilliant spot prizes.
I will conclude with our thought:
“The best angle from which to approach any problem is the try-angle”



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