May 18

FIRST COMMUNION FOR ST PATRICK’S: 52 boys and girls from St Patrick’s Boy’s National School, and from St Patrick’s Girl’s School, Dublin Road, received their first Holy Communion, in St Patrick’s Church, last Saturday morning. 52 children from St Brigid’s School received their first Holy Communion two weeks earlier on April 27. It was showery and cool, but this did not dampen the happy spirits of the children on their special day. The church was packed out to the seams with the biggest attendance ever, with many standing. Their long awaited day had come at last, after months of careful preparation with their teachers Ms White, Ms Geary, and Ms Morgan, who did an excellent job. Their parents, grand-parents, and other family members were all present, as also their Principals and teachers. The organist was Sheila Garry. Their opening hymn was, very appropriately, ‘this is the day.’ They participated in the liturgy throughout their Mass celebrated by our parish priest Fr David Gibson, and assisted by our Curate Fr Eamonn Purcell. As the most special moment for the reception of the holy Eucharist for the very first time approached, a boy and a girl, went forward together to the altar to receive holy communion very reverently, returning back to their seats to prepare for thanksgiving prayers, whilst the next group awaiting their turn, went forward in a most orderly manner. The atmosphere was happy, reverent, and prayerful. The little boys looked handsome in their first ever suits, and the little girls gorgeous in their beautiful ballerina length white dresses and veils. It was an emotional moment; heart strings were pulled, especially for their parents and teachers who had put so much hard work into their preparation, and now seeing their efforts coming to fruition so beautifully, as everything went off very well. Fr Gibson in his homily said …”We see the boys and girls so beautifully turned out to-day; so enthusiastic coming to receive Jesus as the bread of life. I wonder how many children will be here for Mass tomorrow. I wonder how many will be here for Mass next week, or the week after. Jesus wants us to receive the bread of life often; to nourish our souls in a spiritual way. You won’t get that nourishment anywhere else. When they are adults they can decide for themselves if they want to come to Mass or not, but when they are children and your responsibility, they won’t be held responsible if they come or not. It is down to you, the parents. We are the ones they love and trust, and take their example from. Today our children get so much bad example from the society we live in We are very lucky in this parish that we have excellent teachers who are very good influences on our children, but the children need more than that. The teachers have them for a certain time of the day; parents have them for the vast majority of the day. It is what YOU do that soaks in; they are like a sponge; they soak up everything, and we want them to soak up everything that is good.” Fr Gibson appealed to parents saying “don’t deny your children a relationship with God, and said we pray that this will be the beginning of many encounters with God.” Fr. thanked Sheila Garry for her beautiful playing of the keyboard, also Sacristans Maura and Michael Hayes, Brid Sheehan for providing and arranging the flowers, Fr Eamonn for all his work in the schools over the year, and for assisting in the Mass. He also thanked the School’s Principals Mr Anthony Liddane (boys) and Mr Donal O’Gorman (girls), and the teachers and staff of the two St Patricks schools Beautiful bouquets of flowers were presented to their teachers as a token of thanks. Refreshments were provided afterwards in the hall of St Patrick’s boy’s school. On behalf of our parish community, we congratulate each boy and girl; may God protect, watch over, and accompany them all the days of their lives.

FIRST COMMUNION FOR ST PATRICK’S: 52 boys and girls from St Patrick’s Boy’s National School, and from St Patrick’s Girl’s School, Dublin Road, received their first Holy Communion, in St Patrick’s Church, last Saturday morning. 52 children from St Brigid’s School received their first Holy Communion two weeks earlier on April 27. It was showery and cool, but this did not dampen the happy spirits of the children on their special day. The church was packed out to the seams with the biggest attendance ever, with many standing. Their long awaited day had come at last, after months of careful preparation with their teachers Ms White, Ms Geary, and Ms Morgan, who did an excellent job. Their parents, grand-parents, and other family members were all present, as also their Principals and teachers. The organist was Sheila Garry. Their opening hymn was, very appropriately, ‘this is the day.’ They participated in the liturgy throughout their Mass celebrated by our parish priest Fr David Gibson, and assisted by our Curate Fr Eamonn Purcell. As the most special moment for the reception of the holy Eucharist for the very first time approached, a boy and a girl, went forward together to the altar to receive holy communion very reverently, returning back to their seats to prepare for thanksgiving prayers, whilst the next group awaiting their turn, went forward in a most orderly manner. The atmosphere was happy, reverent, and prayerful. The little boys looked handsome in their first ever suits, and the little girls gorgeous in their beautiful ballerina length white dresses and veils. It was an emotional moment; heart strings were pulled, especially for their parents and teachers who had put so much hard work into their preparation, and now seeing their efforts coming to fruition so beautifully, as everything went off very well. Fr Gibson in his homily said …”We see the boys and girls so beautifully turned out to-day; so enthusiastic coming to receive Jesus as the bread of life. I wonder how many children will be here for Mass tomorrow. I wonder how many will be here for Mass next week, or the week after. Jesus wants us to receive the bread of life often; to nourish our souls in a spiritual way. You won’t get that nourishment anywhere else. When they are adults they can decide for themselves if they want to come to Mass or not, but when they are children and your responsibility, they won’t be held responsible if they come or not. It is down to you, the parents. We are the ones they love and trust, and take their example from. Today our children get so much bad example from the society we live in We are very lucky in this parish that we have excellent teachers who are very good influences on our children, but the children need more than that. The teachers have them for a certain time of the day; parents have them for the vast majority of the day. It is what YOU do that soaks in; they are like a sponge; they soak up everything, and we want them to soak up everything that is good.” Fr Gibson appealed to parents saying “don’t deny your children a relationship with God, and said we pray that this will be the beginning of many encounters with God.” Fr. thanked Sheila Garry for her beautiful playing of the keyboard, also Sacristans Maura and Michael Hayes, Brid Sheehan for providing and arranging the flowers, Fr Eamonn for all his work in the schools over the year, and for assisting in the Mass. He also thanked the School’s Principals Mr Anthony Liddane (boys) and Mr Donal O’Gorman (girls), and the teachers and staff of the two St Patricks schools Beautiful bouquets of flowers were presented to their teachers as a token of thanks. Refreshments were provided afterwards in the hall of St Patrick’s boy’s school. On behalf of our parish community, we congratulate each boy and girl; may God protect, watch over, and accompany them all the days of their lives.

ST BRIGID’S SCHOOL NEWS: FOURTH GREEN FLAG: Congratulations to the Green Schools Committee, and to the entire student and parent body, who have supported our initiatives on the theme of ‘Travel’. As a result of our combined efforts in observing Walk-on-Wednesday, and increasing our environmental awareness, we have been awarded our fourth Green Flag. The award ceremony will take place in the Silver Springs Hotel, in Cork, on May 20, and will be attended by two staff members and two pupils.

FUNDRAISING: Great effort was also invested in the Easter raffle, which yielded a profit of over €3,400. As always the event was run like clockwork, and great credit is due to the members of the Parents’ Association who gave their time and skills to benefit all the children in the school.

SCIENCE AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE 2013: Science Day on April 17, was enjoyed by all ages, with classes from Junior Infants to Sixth presenting experiments, and visiting the twenty two stands; and a great variety of scientific discovery was on display. The school has also received it’s ‘Discovery Primary Science Award for Excellence 2013.’

SPORTS: Camogie practice continues on Tuesdays for Under 11’s, and the girls have played two matches already. The boys train in hurling skills in Claughaun GAA club each Monday.

“LET US WALK” SCHOOL ANTHEM: Fifth Class have recorded their own song to Brigid, with Dennis Allen (who composed and sings the song “Limerick you’re a Lady.”). Dennis brought his own recording equipment to the school, and a C.D. was made. It is called “Let Us Walk” and will be adopted by all classes as our School anthem.

LIMERICK SCHOOLS SPORTS: will take place in U.L. on May 21. St. Brigid’s held its Athletics Day, in Claughaun recently, and those who qualified to participate, continue their training for Plassey.

HUNT MUSEUM: Fifth Class visited the Granary Library, and the Hunt Museum recently. Their project on the novel ‘War Horse’ by Michael Morpurgo is on display in the public library In the Hunt Museum. They enjoyed an excellent Medieval Workshop which brought to life a period of History which they had studied in class.

GARDEN GLORY: The garden is finally bursting into life, after the long, cold Spring. The trees in particular are bursting into leaf, and there are some signs of life in the pond. CHILDREN’S GENEROUSITY: Many of our sixth class students donated some of their ‘Confirmation money’ to children in need in Third World countries

96th FATIMA ANNIVERSARY: Monday last was May 13, and the 96th Anniversary of the first apparition of Our Lady of Fatima to the three little shepherds, Francisco, Jacinta, and Lucia, in Fatima, Portugal in 1917. Great celebrations took place there, and were broadcast live on EWTN television. On Sunday night last, there was a massive attendance at the candlelight procession in Rosary Square. On Monday morning, there was the celebration of an open-air International Mass on the steps of the Rosary Basilica, in glorious sunshine. Rosary Square was packed out with thousands of people, many holding colourful umbrellas for shelter from the sun, and looking very deeply moved by the ceremonies. It was amazing viewing. The vivid clear blue skies, the marvellous sunshine, but most of all the love and devotion for Our Lady of Fatima, was so beautiful to see. During the ceremony also, they consecrated Pope Francis to Our Lady of Fatima. The beautiful statue of Our Lady of Fatima standing on a platform covered with white roses was carried in procession from the Chapel of the Apparitions around the square. Benediction followed a 2 hour Mass The Portugese choir sang beautifully throughout. The monstrance containing the Blessed Sacrament, the commentator pointed out, was designed to symbolize the rays of the sun, in remembrance of the miracle of the sun that happened in Fatima in 1917, when the sun went into a spin and looked as if it might fall out of the sky, and this was so spectacular and frightening for all who witnessed it - 96 years ago. Fatima is a wonderful place to visit; it’s a holy place; a place of simplicity and peace.

BELATED CONGRATULATIONS: On behalf of our parish community, we wish to extend our most joyful congratulations and very best wishes, and prayers, to our new Bishop of Limerick, Bishop Brendan Leahy.

HAPPY 90th BIRTHDAY: Our very warmest congratulations and good wishes to Michael Ryan, Fairgreen, who celebrated his 90th birthday last week. Michael had not just one, but two family birthday parties! and deservedly so for such a nice gentleman.

GET WELL WISHES: for a speedy recovery for Jerry Patterson, Director of St Brigid’s Choir, who is in hospital at the moment. Our prayers and best wishes are with you at this time Jerry

PROCEDURES FOR BAPTISM: In accordance with the Diocese of Limerick, parents who have enrolled their child for Baptism must attend an information evening. This meeting takes place once a month only on the first Wednesday of every month – next date is Wednesday, June 5, at 6.30pm, in St Brigid’s Church.

PARISH OFFICE: located in the Sacristy of St Brigid’s Church. Tel O6I 319477, Emailparishstpatricks@gmail.com Opening hours on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings from 10.15am until 1.00pm.

ST PATRICK’S GAA: Saints lost to Na Piarsaigh in the city Junior Hurling League, but had a good win over Crecora. St Patricks need to beat Mugret in their next match. On Tuesday night the minor footballers took on Na Piarsaigh in Rhebogue. After a big win in their first day out, hopes were high for another victory, but Saint Patrick’s lost 1-09 to 3-06.

LADIES FOOTBALL; Commiserations to Caoimhe Sheehan, Nicole Bennet, and Stephanie Nunan, who were part of the defeated Limerick U14 girl’s team that lost toWaterford by one point 4-03 to 3-07 in the Munster final. All three girls played a big part with Caoimhe and Nicole scoring a goal each.

FIXTURES; It is a quiet week on the playing front as both minor and under16 competitions take a break for exams, but our under 14 hurling and football competitions start up….. Wednesday, May 15th U14 girl’s football V Monaleen in Rhebogue Thursday, May 16th U12 football V Oola in Oola @6.45pm Friday, May 17th U12 girl’s football V Ahane in Ahane