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By Damien Ahern

Athea GAA Easter Scrap Metal Fundraiser

Athea GAA Club will hold a scrap metal fundraiser during the Easter weekend on Saturday April 8th, Sunday April 9th and Monday April 10th from 10am – 4pm daily at the Carpark at Athea GAA Club. Items accepted include bikes, radiators, sinks, stoves, pots, pans, cutlery, old cars, farm machinery etc. Please see local press and social media for the full list of goods accepted. Offloading facilities will be available at the Club during the times mentioned above, and a collection service will also be available upon request by phoning Tina on 087 9355667. This is an ideal opportunity to clean up your home or farmyard and help raise funds to help us pay off our current loan for our pitch & walking track which currently stands at €25,000. Thanks to everyone for their continued support.

Return of Underage Training

Football – Nursery (Under 5 years), U7/U9/U11 returns Friday March 24th from 6.30pm – 7.30pm

U13s Monday 6.30pm – 7.30pm

Hurling – Nursery/U7/U9/U11/U13 returns Sunday March 26th from 10am – 11am

All children will need to be registered with Athea GAA to train. This can be done online through Club Force (see details below) or there will also be members of the Club at the Club House prior to training and can be done in person. Looking forward to welcoming everyone back for another great season.

Step to the Beat

Step to the beat will continue on Thursday Night at the walking track from 6.30-7.30pm. The chosen playlist for this week will be the 80s! Lines are still on sale for our Easter Hamper, priced at one line for €2, or three for €5. The draw will take place Easter weekend. Membership for 2023 will also be available to purchase at the Clubhouse during this hour. Thanks to everyone for their continued support.

Upcoming fixtures –

Saturday 25th March – Intermediate League – Cappagh V Athea in Cappagh @ 15.00

Sunday 26th Match – Junior League – Ballysteen V Athea in Ballysteen @ 18.30



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St. Bartholomew’s Church Athea

Mass Intentions next weekend Sun Mar 26th at 11am: Billy & Kathleen Casey, Paddy McCoy and all deceased members of the McCoy family, Margaret O’Connor (Lower Road). Thursday March 23rd 7pm (Mass Intention- Phil French & Willie Kiely- recently deceased UK)

Ministers of the Word:               Kathleen Mullane & Tom Denihan.

Ministers of the Eucharist:  Pat Higgins & Majella Dalton.

Weekday Mass this week:  Tuesday Mar 21st 9.30 am followed by Eucharistic Adoration and the Devine Mercy Chaplet and Thursday Mar 23rd 7pm.

All masses are streamed live on https://www,

Baptisms. on the 4th weekend of the month. Sunday at 12noon until the end of March and

Saturday at 2.30 from April to Oct incl. Next baptism course on Tues evening April 11th at 8pm.

Our weekend mass will be switching to Saturday evening on April 15th for summertime

Parish Office: Mon-Fri 11am-1pm. Call 087-3331459 or email [email protected]

Church post box just inside the main church gate (on the pier) for any church related post.

Lourdes Youth Pilgrimage 2023 (22nd – 27th June). For booking details contact Karen at 061-350000 or email at [email protected]

Limerick Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes 2023. Led by Bishop Brendan Leahy.  Direct return flights from Shannon to Lourdes. For booking contact Joe Walsh Tours, Telephone 01-2410800 or email [email protected] €879 per person, full board, all taxes included. Full religious programme.

The Way I See It

By Domhnall de Barra

We are going to have a referendum soon asking us to change some articles in our constitution. One of these refers to the family unit and the place of women in society. It is hard to believe that such a clause could be included but there is a big difference between now and 1937, the year the constitution was written. Society was very different in those days relying heavily on the Catholic Church’s beliefs, indeed the Church gets pride of place in its own right. The state recognised a family unit that was a man married to a woman so there was absolutely no protection for single fathers or mothers or those who choose to live together outside wedlock. Homosexuality wasn’t just frowned upon, it was a crime punishable by the courts. The roles of men and women were clearly defined in those days. The man was the breadwinner who provided for his wife and family while the mother’s duties were confined to the home and children. The constitution even mentions the fact that no woman should be forced to work outside the home to the neglect of her children. It wasn’t a good time for women who, when they got married, had to promise to obey their husbands in all things. The husband had the right to “chastise” his wife if he felt she wasn’t being obedient or neglecting her duties. This meant he could beat his wife with the protection of the state from prosecution. Then there was his conjugal rights. He was entitled to demand sexual relations with his wife whenever he wanted and she was legally bound to submit to him. In the days before contraception this led to very big families which was extra work for the woman of the house. Along with looking after the children she might have to milk cows, feed hens, ducks, geese or turkeys and give a hand in the bog or the meadow. Educating females was seen as a waste of time. Teaching and nursing were the most sought after positions but there was a rule that a woman who filled one of theses posts had to give it up if she got married so what was the point in wasting money on education when a “good match” could be made. The women of Ireland were treated appallingly by both the Church and the State and it is surprising that those clauses in the Constitution were not removed years ago. Today we have a society that is more equal and tolerant and recognises the contributions of both sexes without favour. We should be ashamed of the way we acted in the past but we cannot go back, we can only look forward and take a small step by getting rid of some of the more outdated clauses in our constitution. No state should have its foundation in any religion but should be tolerant of all. After all what religion a person pursues is more an accident of birth than a conscious decision. Many regions are not kind to women who see them as second class but this is patently wrong and discriminatory. We do not ever want a state like those in the Middle East who will not allow girls to be educated. While we can’t influence those countries we can use our votes here at home to give us all equality before the law.

I am writing this during Seachtain na Gaeilge so it is only right that I should mention our native language. I was going to write a bit “as Gaeilge” but it so long since I did that, 60 years, that I’m afraid nobody would be able to understand it.  Irish is one of the oldest languages in Europe and was spoken widely in this country until just over 100 years ago.  Although it is a Celtic language it has little in common with Welsh, Cornish and Breton, other Celtic areas. There is a great similarity between Irish and the Scots Gallic but that is no surprise since Scotland is only a very short sea voyage from Northern Ireland and the peoples of both countries regularly intermingled. Irish is very different to English in the way it is pronounced and phrased. It is probably derived from a mixture of other languages and you will find Irish words used in other tongues. The word “dó” which is the number 2, can be found in many languages such as Urdu and I found that the word for rabbit, “coinín” is also used to describe the same animal in Danish.  Why did we stop speaking Irish in the most of the country?  The British invaders passed laws that forbade the education of Catholic children and outlawed the teaching of the Irish language. These laws went much farther and basically Catholics had no rights to property, votes and could not be elected to Parliament. It did not immediately achieve its objectives as the clergy used to say Mass in remote areas, usually by a rock  This became known as the Mass Rock and was kept secret from the powers in control at the time. Some teachers opened “hedge schools” in remote areas so the education, basic as it was, continued. When Ireland got her independence much of the buildings like police barracks and such, were handed back to the state. There was one such building in Abbeyfeale  which was handed over but with the provisos that it would never be used to house the Catholic clergy or educate the Catholic youth.  Years down the road there was a fire in the local presbytery and while it was being restored, the priests lived in that house. A few years after it was acquired by Jim Kelly who opened his Secondary School, St. Itas College which continued to educate the Catholic youth until it was amalgamated with the Convent school and the Vocational School a few years ago The suppression of the language meant that people had to learn English if they had to have any dealings with the state at the time. Gradually the use of English became more widespread until, for a time, people were speaking a mixture of both languages. I remember when I was growing up we used an awful lot of Irish words in our day to day conversation and this was decades after the war of independence. Timmy Woulfe has produced a fine book of these words  called “As Tough as táthfhéithleann It lists all the words and phrases used in everyday life in the middle of the last century and is well worth a read. (some copies are still available ag Cairde Duchais).  As time went on these words were left behind as were the rural accents.


The band who have recently performed on TG4 and RTE 1 return home to help raise funds for Fleadh by the Feale which is held annually on the May Bank Holiday weekend here in Abbeyfeale. The group will be joined by the young lassie with the gorgeous voice, Eileen Broderick, and also by the Sliabh Luachra Musician in Residence Eoin Stan O’Sullivan and you are guaranteed a great night’s entertainment. The fundraising concert will be held at the Glórach Theatre on Saturday, March 25.Tickets €15. Booking 087 1383940.

Scrap Metal Fundraiser

Athea GAA Spring into recycling mode.What we need:

Household items. Bicycles, go-karts, goal posts, swing sets, pots, pans, cutlery etc. Stoves, coal buckets, shovels, radiators, sinks, tanks, taps, copper & brass products.

Farmyard & other items (examples)

Gates, feeders, metal wiring, wheelbarrows, tanks, barrels, buckets, engines, scrap parts, batteries, RSJs, metal sheeting, & other scrap metal, old cars, farm machinery.  Contact: Tina 087-9355667, Diarmuid 087-6986798. Liz 087-6699783





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Kathleens Corner-21/03/2023

By Kathleen Mullane


Well I’m e-mailing my few lines this week would you believe from Lanzarote. I wasn’t expecting to be at this side of the GLOBE, but when you have family that sometimes surprise you with things, you just have to go with the FLOW. Well last week the newsletter was online as Donal was in America so no doubt he will have news on his travels too.

First of all I will start by offering our sympathy to The Moran Family on Tommy’s passing last week and unfortunately we couldn’t be at the funeral. But thankfully with modern technology it was wonderful to be able to watch on the webcam in his church in Rathfarnham. Canon Tony celebrated a beautiful mass concelebrated by 5 other priests including Fr Brendan Duggan and Fr. Tim O’Leary. Tommy had friends far and wide all over the world and as Fr. Tony said in his homily he mixed with politicians and presidents but he never forgot those less well off. His home was Dublin but his roots stood firm in Athea.

Tommy was cremated in Dublin and I’m sure many will join with me in offering sympathy to his beloved wife Sheila his family  and adoring grandchildren. No doubt he will be missed by many far and wide, but will be remembered at Red Cow as a meeting place for all Limerick hurling enthusiasts and more. May his generous soul rest in peace.

On Thursday last Athea N.S. held a pyjama day in his memory with funds raised going to Pieta House. Not very long ago he had made the journey from Dublin to present Hurley’s to the schoolchildren in Ardagh, Carrigkerry and Athea national schools. He was adamant that hurling would take off here in his area and I’m sure in the not too distant future who knows, a player may be on the Limerick team from our area  and wouldn’t he be a proud man in the heavens above. Lovely tributes were made by his family and grandchildren at the mass in memory of the man who they had known as Dad and the Boss.

Sincere sympathy is also extended to Sean O’Shea and his family in Templeathea on the death of his niece Meadhbh Cameron, nee Moran, of Rathkeale who passed away at a very young age last week. Sympathy to her husband Lee and all her family at this difficult time. May she rest in peace.

Well just a little insight into St. Patrick’s Day here in Lanzarote, Mass at 11 am saw the little church packed after 10.20 many having to stand outside. An Irish music group played lovely music before Mass. We were treated to brilliant Irish dancing during mass up and down the aisle.!!!!The congregation wore green hats,  flowers, clothes everything Green. Boolavogue was sung by the whole congregation near the end of Mass. The Spanish priest came down after mass with a tall St. Patrick’s hat on him. 

Outside the church more music and dancing with hundreds gathered I’ve never seen as much GREEN in my life together.! The Mayor then with the consulate opened a huge open-air concert which went on from 12 mid-day till 10 o’clock that night with food and drink-stalls all around . The costumes and attire were something else. The mayor thanked the Irish business people in Lanzarote saying 262,000 visitors came from Ireland last year. To end the weekend Ireland won the Grand Slam which put the Icing On The Cake. Everyone here was IRISH.

Well enough about my travels hope everyone at home had a great Irish weekend and all the Mother’s especially had a lovely Mother’s Day. Again I tuned in to Fr. Tony’s  Mass in Athea where he read a lovely poem for Mothers.

See you all this week on Home Soil again.!!!


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