Limerick Synod conference to examine sport's role

Alan Owens


Alan Owens

Limerick Synod conference to examine sport's role

Ger Hartmann with Mickey Harte, who will both speak at the conference in Limerick

TYRONE manager Mickey Harte and Ger Hartmann will be among the speakers at a major conference in Limerick, focusing on how the Church can learn from sport.

Building Community – Lessons from the World of Sport will take place in the Lime Tree on February 24 from 6pm and is a build up to the Limerick Diocesan Synod, taking place in April.

The conference will examine how the Church can learn from sport’s ‘sense of community’ and, speaking ahead of the event, renowned physical therapist Hartmann said that “faith is hugely important to me but faith plays a huge role in the sporting world”.

“Throughout competitions I recited decades of the rosary praying as I competed. I drew on my faith to empower performance,” he said.

Mr Hartmann, who will appear alongside Mr Harte and well-known sporting figures such as Limerick GAA stars Cian Lynch, Seamus Hickey and Declan Hannon, as well as Pat O’Sullivan from Limerick FC, said that the the majority of athletes he has worked with “spend those final moments before the 'off' in prayer, in the request for the perfect performance”.

“So faith and sport really are intertwined for so many. When you go to really strong communities, you will typically also see faith and sport really prominent.

“They are the glue for many great parishes and communities and we all know the importance of communities.”

The sports conference will seek to draw on the experience of the sporting world and how the Church can learn from this, Synod Director Eamonn Fitzgibbon explained.

“Ultimately with our Synod, we are seeking to reimagine the role of the Church in the future and if it is to make the type of contribution we want, it must be at the heart of a community,” he said. 

“Sport is at the heart of communities and we have a lot we can learn from sport.”