Ronald McDonald Donations

Ronald McDonald have new arrivals and need your help. These newborn babies are being treated in hospital and need a few supplies. They include:

Nappy Cream – Soothers

Bibs – Muslin Cloths

Vaseline – Bath or Hand Towels

Breast Pads – Baby Wipes

You can drop your donations to Athea Library on Saturday 15th and Saturday 22nd of May from 1pm-3pm. You can contact Philomena Keily on

087-268 1822 or Helen Hickey on 087-931 0330

Athea United Notes

Hi all, just want to update everyone with regard to soccer returning to the Vales this year.

Firstly this season’s Junior and underage leagues have been cancelled by the Desmond League due to Covid 19.

The new season 21/22 will revert to winter soccer, as voted by each club, i.e. will start in August/September (TBC) and run until April/May as it did traditionally.

Due to these commencement dates, the club has decided not to officially return to training immediately as with other sports such as Gaelic football and hurling in mid season, it was deemed unnecessary to further burden parents and players, as people gradually return to some sort of normality.

However if individual teams/managers wish to return to some training sooner than the club do, this will be accommodated on a case by case basis. Managers can contact any member of the committee to discuss further.

This years FAI summer schools camp will proceed at the Vales in August, from the 16th to the 20th inclusive, where we hope to have large numbers returning after playing virtually no soccer this year.

I have included a link below to the FAI website for online registration for the camp. Further details will be posted here closer to the commencement of the camp.

We thank our supporters, parents and players for there continued support during this unprecedentedly difficult spell.

Keep an eye on this page for some exiting news with regard to our weekly lotto draw, returning in the not too distant future, fingers crossed.

St. Bartholomew’s Church, Athea

Mass Intentions next weekend

Fri May 14th 7.30pm:                     Paddy Dalton, Jeremiah Lyons & Patrick Walsh.

(100th anniversary – Gortagleanna).  John Danaher.

Sat May 15th 7.30pm:                    Mary O’Carroll Woods & Family. Catherine Liston. Molly White.

Sun May 16th 10.30am:                 Denny Barrett. John Byrne.

Your prayers are requested this week for Margaret (Madge) White, Coole West whose funeral took place recently here in Athea and for John Walsh formally of Clash, who died recently in Brighton UK.

All masses and funeral masses are live streamed on the Church Services TV network via the following link

Churches Open on the 10th of May

We are delighted that churches are open again for people to attend mass and other religious services from this week on. The maximum number of people allowed to attend is 50 and the two-metre social distancing rule still applies. As before, the stewards will direct you to the hand sanitizing stations and then to your seats. The stewards will also direct you to Holy Communion and at the end of Mass we are asking people to exit the church gradually and safely. We ask you to follow the guidance of the stewards at all times. The church will need to be cleaned thoroughly after each time that it is used. The cleaning of the building after each Mass is essential to maintain safety and prevent the spread of the virus.

Baptismal Information:

Any parent wishing to baptise their child must have the baptismal course completed – for further details please contact Theresa on 087 1513565.

Course Dates:  Thurs 13th May/ Tues 8th June/ Tues 13th July

Car Radio Service:

We have recently installed a radio service which allows you to listen to mass on your car radio when parked in the church car parks – please tune your radio to 105fm.

Church opening

The Church is open daily for private prayer. If you wish to book an anniversary mass, a wedding or get a mass card signed please contact Fr. Brendan on 087-0562674 or Siobhan on 087-2237858.

The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

I wonder what RTE would do for news content if we didn’t have Covid. Every news and current affairs programme is taken up with the latest figures, interviews with the few experts remaining who have not yet contributed, as well as the old reliables, who all tell us the same thing over and over again. They then turn to the general public to get their views, views that are very predictable. On Monday, as some businesses opened up for the first time in months, they did the rounds of hairdressers, librarians, shopkeepers and priests asking how they felt about being back in business again. The answers of course were obvious. Did they expect somebody to come on and say “ I am really sorry to be opening up. I was enjoying being confined and dependent on the  government handout to survive”. I know it is nice to be kept up to speed on developments but I am getting fed up with the constant rehashing of the same message. It has gone into overkill and is in danger of becoming counter-productive.  I would love to see it being scaled back and replaced by other news from around the country and the world. RTE have some fantastic journalists and presenters at their disposal, such as Katie Hannon from Duagh, who are capable of  looking behind the scenes to uncover wrong-doings and bringing them to our attention. They would be better employed doing that than  trying to dress up old material in new clothes. The opening of some businesses and public facilities today is to be welcomed, also the right to travel outside  one’s county. The travel restrictions based on county boundaries were never fair when you think that a person in Cork could travel  from one side of the country to the other without leaving the county while people in Louth had only a few miles latitude. It was unfair on people like us from Athea who were very near the border. As an example; I could go down to Ballyneety or Castletroy to play golf while my brother Noel could not travel the much shorter distance to Ballybunion, his own club, because he was crossing the county bounds and was outside the 20k limit. Anyway, it is over now and the fervent hope is that it will never again return. I got my second vaccination on Thursday last and I can’t describe the feeling of relief and security it brought me.  I have lived in fear of contracting the virus because I have type 2 diabetes and I didn’t know if I could survive. It will also be great to hug the grandchildren, something we take for granted until it is taken away from us. Looking forward to a few bar-b-cues with the family, weather permitting.

Great to see the Gaelic Games back on the screen again. I prefer the hurling, surely the best and most skilful field game in the world, and enjoyed watching Limerick’s game with Tipperary. There are a couple of things bugging me though and they are down to refereeing and rule interpretations. How many steps can a player take with the ball in hand, and why is the ball thrown instead of being passed in the proper manner?. Referees seem to have given up on blowing for over-carrying in both football and hurling. It  was very much in evidence in Saturday’s game with players taking 10 or 12 steps before releasing the ball. I watched a Dublin player take fourteen steps last year before scoring. Either there is a three or four step rule or there is not. Then we have the hand pass.  Most of the time the ball is thrown and it is very difficult for referees to see in a match at full speed. It also creates problems in football as over use of the hand pass is  destroying the game. I would contend that the hand pass should be done away with altogether. Passes in hurling should be made with the hurley only and with the boot in football. It would encourage players to play more quickly and develop new skills. The hand pass in football is helping with the soccer tactics of maintaining possession at all times. It leads to negative football that is boring to watch  and takes away from the traditional high fielding and  man to man tackling. I think we would have better, faster and more traditional games if the hand pass disappeared. While on the subject, isn’t’ there something eerie about games played without spectators?. It just shows  how important the fans are and I hope it won’t be long before we hear the familiar chants from the terraces again.

There was a great turnout for the “Darkness into Light” walk on Saturday last.  Pieta house benefited to the tune of  €6,000,000, a fantastic figure which highlights the generosity of the  general public. It is amazing how, week after week, different charities benefit from this generosity. What a pity that some of those who run these charities live a lavish lifestyle on the proceeds. It has been well documented that many CEOs abuse  their positions to finance there own holidays and perks at the expense of those who depend on the money collected on their behalf. These rotten apples should be rooted out and replaced so that every possible cent collected finds its way to those who need it most. Well done to everyone who turned out in the wind and the rain on Saturday last. It will make a difference.

I am reliably informed that work on the Athea Flood Relief scheme will be carried out this summer. For years, people took stones out of the river to use on farm roads, drains etc. and, by doing so, ensured that the water could flow freely underneath the bridge. That practice was outlawed to protect the spawning grounds a number of years ago and, since then, stones and  silt have been building up partially blocking the eyes of the bridge, particularly on the Templeathea side. This resulted in flooding in the area a few years ago when the bottleneck was too much and the river overflowed onto the banks. Houses and contents were damaged at the time so action was called for. Since then the Board of Works have pulled the stone and silt away with a digger once every couple of years but now we are going to get a permanent solution and  the houses affected will no longer be on a flood plain. Good news for Athea and better news for those who live in the vicinity of the bridge.