Grace, Louise, William & Lucy Ahern at the Croke Park Run

Anita, Mark, Milo & Sam at the Croke Park run

St. Bartholomew’s Church, Athea

Mass Intentions next weekend

Fri May 28th 7.30pm:                     Dick Woulfe (month’s mind)

Sat May 29th 7.30pm:                    Mick McCoy.

Sun May 30th 10.30am:                 Thomas Broderick & John Pike.

Your prayers are requested for Paddy Enright, Templeathea East, whose funeral takes place tomorrow Wednesday at Burial afterwards in Holy Cross Cemetery Athea. May he Rest in Peace.

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

Sacristans Collections:

The sacristan’s collection will be taken up at all masses on the first weekend in June (4th/5th/6th).

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:   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 if we truly appreciate the type of government we have and the freedom we enjoy in this country. We live in a democracy that lets us choose our own leaders and replace them after a term in office if we don’t like what they are doing. We have political parties that range from the left to just right of centre  representing different ideologies and we are free to support them or criticise them as we see fit. We have a free press that is not slow to highlight perceived wrongdoings in political circles and journalists rights are protected by law. We have a fair and impartial justice system and a police force that serves the public well. Education is free to all and, though it has its problems, our health service is available to those who can’t afford to go private. Freedom of religion is guaranteed  even though, up to recently, the population was mostly Catholic.  Despite that fact, we have voted for the right to abortion in certain circumstances and legalised same sex marriage so, all in all, despite its many faults, we live in a free, tolerant society.  Contrast that with the situation in Belarus, which is in the news at the moment, where sham elections were held to give the impression that it was democratic. The results were rigged so that Alexander Lukashenko could continue in office despite the fact that the dogs in the street knew that the vote against him was overwhelming. This resulted in street protests last year but the government cracked down on them and showed no mercy. Any opposition was seen as treason and all the media who weren’t pro state were closed down. The people have no rights and are kept in line by the secret police and the army. Opposition leaders have had to flee the country and try to have their voices heard from abroad. People are regularly arrested for having anti-establishment views and sentenced to very long jail terms. Torture is widespread and the death penalty still exists. The government acts with impunity because they know they have the backing of Russia, another dictatorship. This way of controlling people started with the Bolkovich revolution that replaced the royalty in Russia about 100 years ago. They were supposed to free the people from the tyranny of the monarchy but actually ended up treated them far worse. Anyone against the revolution was an enemy to be  taken out of society. The KGB have great powers even to this day and now the people of Belarus are suffering. Lukashenko has become more daring but last weekend’s hijacking of a Ryanair flight from Greece to Lithuania, so that a journalist on board could be arrested, may be one step too far. The plane was contacted telling them of the possibility of a bomb  on board and ordered  it to land at Minsk Airport even though they were almost at the Lithuanian border and were closer to their destination. To ensure compliance a jet fighter escorted the plane to the airfield where the journalist and his girlfriend were arrested. The rest of the passengers were put back on the flight but there were five people who stayed in Minsk. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that these were secret agents who had shadowed the journalist from Greece. This is an outrage and a blatant act of aggression that cannot be ignored. Condemnation is coming from the western world and the EC but words are not sufficient in this case. If they are allowed to get away with this, what next?  The free world has a duty of care to its citizens and no country should be allowed to hijack an airliner for its own dark purposes. Further tough sanctions have been announced but I wonder what effect they will have. There have been sanctions against other countries, notably North Korea and Iran, that don’t seem to be having the desired effect and it is usually the ordinary citizens who suffer most. Whatever it takes this blatant act of  aggression cannot go unpunished.

Talking of dark purposes, the hacking of the HSE records by international criminals shows how dangerous modern technology can be. We have no option but to trust that information we freely give to hospitals, banks, online companies etc  is safe but we now know that we are at the mercy of skilled hackers who seem to be able to get into any system. I had first hand experience of the chaos caused to the health system over the weekend when Noreen was sent to the hospital in Limerick for tests. She had to have x-rays and a cat scan which would normally be done by a technician and the results would be online. Now she had to be accompanied by the doctors who had to monitor and physically write down the results as they happened. It made everything slow and painstaking but, thank God, everything was ok and she is back at work again. It is easy to point the finger at the HSE and say they did not spend enough money on security but the truth is that the hackers are ahead of the game all the time. The biggest problem with these hackers is the fact that some of them are state sponsored and are conducting a type of warfare. North Korea and Russia seem to be the main culprits but it may be more widespread than we think. It is time for the world to unite in getting rid of this menace once and for all. We know who they are and where they are. All that is needed is the political will to root them out. Knowing the way the world is, I won’t be holding my breath..

The picture below shows the state of the bog after the turf machine has left. In the old days the stripping sod was laid in the boghole and levelled. Now it is like a bomb hit it.







UL Hospitals Group Update

SERVICES across UL Hospitals Group continue to be adversely impacted by the cyber attack on HSE IT systems. This extends to widespread cancellations in scheduled care across our six sites. The  following service disruptions continue across the following hospitals:

  • University Hospital Limerick
  • University Maternity Hospital Limerick
  • Ennis Hospital
  • Nenagh Hospital
  • St John’s Hospital
  • Croom Orthopaedic Hospital


  • All outpatient clinics are cancelled. This includes paediatric outpatient appointments.
  • All elective inpatient and day case procedures are cancelled. This is with the exception of time-critical cases and these patients will be called directly in advance.
  • All diagnostics including x-ray, CT scans, MRI appointments and cardiac investigations are cancelled.
  • Endoscopy services are cancelled.


  • Maternity services including ante-natal clinic
  • Dialysis treatment
  • Cancer day ward (chemotherapy and radiotherapy)
  • Acute Fracture Unit (UHL)
  • Vaccination centres at the Radisson Blu Hotel (Limerick), West County Hotel (Ennis) and Abbey Court Hotel (Nenagh)


The Emergency Department (ED) at UHL continues to operate 24-7 but is very busy.  Members of the public are reminded to consider all care options (GP, GP out-of-hours, pharmacy, Injury Unit) and only attend the ED in an emergency.

Patients attending our Emergency Department or Injury Units are advised to bring any information with them that will assist our staff while our IT systems are down. This could be any document or record which includes the patients Medical Record Number (MRN) or Patient Chart Number (PCN). This information is usually on a sticker on hospital documentation, or on medications or prescriptions, or any hospital discharge information from a previous time spent in hospital.

Non urgent patients may experience significant delays.  Injury Units are operating in Ennis Hospital and Nenagh Hospital and are open from 8am to 8pm and St John’s Hospital from 8am to 7pm.   The Maternity Emergency Unit is available 24-7 and the Early Pregnancy Assessment Unit continues to operate an appointment only service. Patients are advised to pay attention to updates as we expect that services are likely to be further disrupted early next week.

Updates on service disruptions will be posted to the HSE Service Disruption Website and on the following twitter accounts @ulhospitals and @hselive and we encourage patients to check on these sites for the most up to date information.

We apologise to patients who are experiencing delays and disruptions to our service as a result of the cyber attack.

Is Mise le meas,

Richard O’Donoghue TD