Billy McKenna, Teddy O’Connor, Jim Carmody, Lillian O’Carroll, Jim Sheehy & Pa Kiely outside the Community Council premises

Billy McKenna, Teddy O’Connor, Jim Carmody, Lillian O’Carroll, Jim Sheehy & Pa Kiely outside the Community Council premises

Three Athea Children qualify to represent Limerick at the

National Community Games Finals in Athlone

The Athea Community Games Cross Country Team had an extremely successful afternoon last Friday 24th. All the competitors ran very well and five of the children brought home medals.  Thomas McEnery, Anne-Marie Pierse and Dermot Pierse all qualified to represent Limerick in the national finals competition which will be held in Athlone this August.  Emily Pierse became the U16 Limerick County Champion for the 1200m.  Congratulations to all the children who ran and put in enormous effort for these tough long distance races.

 Church Gate Collection

In aid of Rehab Foundation this weekend  May 2nd/3rd. Your support would be greatly appreciated.

Limerick Diocesan Synod 2016

Your Church, Your Voice   We need to hear from you  so have your say

 The Limerick Diocesan Synod will take place in 2016 and will be the largest meeting ever held in the Limerick Diocese. It is important that everyone has the opportunity to shape this future and influence what the Church will look like in Limerick in the years ahead. We need to hear from you so have your say.

Questionnaire’s are available at the following outlets:

O’Riordan’s Pharmacy, Collins’ Shop, Rose’s Shop, Griffin’s Butchers, Post Office & Credit Union.

There are collection boxes in all these outlets and you can put your completed questionnaire in a sealed envelope and drop it into the box or give it to any of the 4 Parish Delegates: Mary Ita Casey, John Redmond, Pat Higgins or Mike Hayes.

A Time For Generosity

North Africa and the Middle East have seen a string of uprisings and revolutions in the recent past leaving hundreds of  thousands dead and many homeless and fleeing for their lives from Islamic extremists who are worse than the Gestapo ever were. Some make it to the northern coast of Libya where they are further exploited by traffickers who charge them large amounts of money to ferry them across the Mediterranean to seek refuge in Europe. Many of these unfortunates, women and babies amongst them, perish at sea or in some cases are thrown overboard. Of course not all who come to Europe in this manner are genuine refugees but can be described as economic migrants seeking a better life in the “free” world. That has been the case for a long time but recently there has been a flood of genuine refugees who would be butchered to death if they returned to their own country. The topic has  been debated on the airways for the past few days and differences arise as to how many Ireland should take or if we should take any at all. The debate on the  Joe Duffy show was started by a Cork woman called Áine Ní Chonaill, a racist bigot who would have fitted in perfectly with Hitler’s regime in their persecution of the Jews, black people and any other than the Aryan race. She would like to have a wall built around the country and keep everyone out forgetting the fact that Ireland’s emigrants have populated the world since the mass emigration started after the famine. Imagine if the ships that bore our forefathers were turned back at Ellis Island not to mention Australia, England, Canada and all the other countries. Even today there are thousands of Irish living and working illegally in America because of the lack of employment in their own land. Our government is continually making  representations  to the powers that be in the US to legalise these workers and rightly so, but how then could we possibly turn around and say “we don’t want to take any refugees” ?   In the present circumstances we need to show humanity and compassion for our less fortunate brothers and sisters and take our fair share. Nobody is suggesting that the doors be open wide and let everybody in but it is the Christian thing to do. Remember, the vast majority of these people have done nothing wrong apart from being from the wrong religion or the wrong tribe.

The world owes the people of Africa a debt because they first of all colonised most of it and then stripped it of its natural resource before leaving a mess behind them. They were in such a hurry to get rid of rulers like Khadafy that they did not realise the consequences of leaving whole areas in a political vacuum that is now filled by extremists. They may have talked of “freeing” the people of Iran, Libya and the likes but the reality is they were protecting the vast oil deposits in the region. The whole place is in turmoil. I worked in Libya in the ‘eighties and found it a lovely place. I saw no poverty while I was there even though the rule of law was strict and unforgiving. Everybody knew where they stood under the dictatorship. With Khadafy removed there is abject poverty and warring factions tearing each other apart. So much for “freedom”.  It is a time for generosity on our part. We must take our fair share of refugees and, at the very least, give them the opportunity to stay alive. It may be our own case someday.

Domhnall de Barra