By Kathleen Mullane

‘Happy New Year’ 

Well firstly, can I wish everyone a very happy, peaceful and healthy New Year. Yet again another Christmas has gone by and all the ‘panic’ and ‘fuss’ and ‘shopping’ and all that goes with the festive season is now ‘A Memory’.

Well since the last newsletter, prior to Christmas, we had the grandparents day at Athea N.S. Mass in the Church on Thursday, 21st was really lovely with the Athea N.S. choir. Full compliments to the teachers and musicians. It was down to the school then where Stephen Keary, Lord Mayor of Limerick, opened the Autistic playground which is indeed a huge asset. Everyone was treated to lovely tea/coffee and all types of cakes. Well done to all the organizers. It was indeed, once again, a lovely ‘grandparents day’.

Trade in the village was brisk during the ‘run-up to Christmas’ and this was indeed great to see, let’s keep it so.

Well done to Mike Hayes, John Redmond, Pat Higgins and James O’Connor who did the traffic stewarding for the Christmas Eve Mass, it was a great help. The church was packed to capacity and the Carol singing with the Athea school choir, preceded the Mass and everyone really enjoyed this. Fr. Duggan and Fr. Tony Mullins concelebrated. Fr. Duggan thanked everyone that had helped make the mass so very special and all those that had helped throughout the year also. All the kids were treated to sweets after.

The weather was kind to the wrenboys on St. Stephen’s Day and it was great to have the Athea batch out in their ‘full glory’ and well done to them having won the wrenboy competition in Glin prior to Christmas.

Tarbert Comprehensive School thanks all the Athea parishioners for their kindness in giving so generously to the ‘Concern’ Collection before Christmas. I lodged    €615.00 which was excellent

It was also brilliant to hear that a few years ago, when the shoeboxes first started off, the amount sent to the less well off kids was 163,000 boxes. This year the total that left our Irish shores was 264,000 – well done.

A big crowd attended the Credit Union AGM on Friday, 22nd December. Pat Fitzgerald, Moyvane) was the lucky winner of the miniature car. Liz O’Sullivan (who, incidentally did a great 4 year stint as chairperson) had completed her term and Katie O’Sullivan, Lower Athea, who recently passed her Chartered Accountancy exams, has taken up the position – we wish her well.

It was a happy time for couples who got married over the Christmas period. Michelle Kearney (daughter of Joe and Angela) Moyvane, who is a teacher here in Athea N.S. got married after Christmas to Dan Leahy (son of Stevie and Mary-Ita) of Upper Athea. The nuptial ceremony took place at the Church of the Assumption, Moyvane. A brilliant day was enjoyed by everyone at The Malton Hotel in Killarney. Congrats to the newly weds and here’s to their future.

On Saturday, December 30th the wedding took place here in Athea of Maireád Tierney, (daughter of Margaret and Ted) of Templeathea to Shane McEnery of Moyvane. The couple travelled from Canada to be wed. Fr. Tom Mangan celebrated the wedding mass. It was off to Ballygarry House Hotel in Tralee afterwards, where the whole wedding party and friends had a wonderful day and night. We congratulate the happy couple and wish them all the very beat as they return to Canada.

Another congrats must go to Jim Dalton of Coole, who celebrated his ‘90th’ birthday along with his relatives and friends over the Christmas holiday time at Gerard White’s. Wishing him many more years of good health.

Yoga will start back in the hall with Linda on Monday, January 15th from 7- 8.30pm. All are welcome, newcomers especially.

There are “suggestion boxes” in the Church and you are asked to fill in any ideas, suggestions, improvements you might like to see happening. It’s with the whole parishes’ help, both young and old, that we can share our thoughts and ideas of what we would like to have happen.

I will keep the rest of my news items until next week, a lot went on over the Christmas!