CHURCH NOTICES: Mass readers this weekend are; Saturday evening, 7.30pm -Mary McGrath. Sunday morning 11am –Michael Hayes. Eucharistic Ministers; Saturday evening 7.30pm Mass –Mary O’Donoghue, Ita Shine. Sunday morning 11am Mass –Sean Barrett, Pat Higgins. Monday, February 11, Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, two Masses. World Day of Prayer for the Sick. Wednesday February 13, Ash Wednesday, two Masses, 9.30am and 7.30pm. Blessing and distribution of the Holy Ashes at both Masses. This Sunday Canon Patrick Kelly will, as usual, celebrate the 9am Mass.
80TH BIRTHDAY: Dan Barrett of Upper Turarree, Athea, recently celebrated his 80th birthday with his family. Congratulations to Dan and best wishes for the future
WELL DONE DUAGH: Congratulations to our Duagh neighbours on their great victory in the North Kerry senior football final replay in which they defeated Beale in a closely contested game. It was fifty years since Duagh’s previous win in the North Kerry final so this victory after all the years of waiting was really something special. The huge crowds who attended both the draw and the replay were clear evidence of the interest in the North Kerry Championship. Some of us who played intermediate football with Duagh (my native parish) in our younger days in less successful years were glad of their achievement on this occasion. Of course a few years ago Duagh got as far as reaching the All-Ireland in the Junior Club Championship and went close enough to taking the title. Lyreacrompane, which is the other section of Duagh parish and (my native homeland), has always had a big input into football by teams from Lyre’s own club (when it existed) or as part of Duagh teams. Congratulations again to this present Duagh side, they have certainly done their parish proud.
BIRTHDAY GIRL: Niamh Brouder recently celebrated her 21st birthday with her family members, relatives and friends at Murphy’s Bar, Abbeyfeale. Congratulations to Niamh on this happy occasion and also to her parents John Ann Brouder, Glenbawn.
ATHEA UNITY LONG OVERDUE: In the proposed carve-up of many of the existing boundaries throughout the county in the wake of the forthcoming amalgamation of Limerick County and City local authorities, many fears have apparently been expressed about the impact of some of these changes. For instance last week in the media it was reported that people in the historic parish of Castleconnell are worried that their parish could be partitioned under the new arrangement for Council area constituencies. While naturally people all over the county would have sympathy with a parish such as Castleconnell that might be under threat of being partitioned, those living within our County should also be made aware that as long as some of us can remember and perhaps long before we came to live here an artificial border, or whatever one cares to call this partition or division of our parish amounts to seems to have been imposed on Athea at some time or another in the past. This unnatural partition of our parish, which separates our people into two different County Council constituencies, one in Newcastle West electoral area and the other in Rathkeale.
This means that the townlands to the South, Gortnagross, Coole West, Coole East, Cratloe East and West, Keale South and North, Clash South and North, Glenagore, Glenduff, Rooskagh West, Knockfinisk, Upper and Lower Athea, Templeathea East and West and Tooradoo are all in Newcastle West County Council constituency plus of course the village of Athea which of course is really the hub and centre of the parish, or at least would be only for the unfortunate situation that the townlands in its hinterland to the north have been carved off into another electoral constituency of Rathkeale including the townlands of Upper and Lower Dirreen, Knocknagorna, Toureendonnell, part of Knockdown and Glasha all cut off from County Council participation with the rest of the parish. This in effect means that a local Athea person on either side of the divide who is a candidate in a local County Council election has far less chance of being elected because of the parish divide, so the chances of electing a local candidate are very limited which is a great handicap to our parish. A candidate would lose much of his or her local stomping ground in the natural environment of the parish, they would be denied the votes of their local neighbours and friends across the glen or across the ditch from them and Athea would be left with no County Council representation. We know Athea people have been elected to the council before but for many too in the present time there are a whole lot of people who are inclined to agree with the concept “that all life is local” and would support a local candidate irrespective of the party or non-party status of that person. Athea has been denied that that opportunity for countless years because some unthinking, faceless bureaucrat drew a line on a map on some occasion in the dim and distant past. It is time the damage that this caused was undone and that Athea parish whose unity, for council election purposes, is long overdue is given a fair deal. It now looks as if all the new boundaries that will be imposed on the County and City are already earmarked with little or no input from the ordinary people.
COISTE NA NÓG: There was a good attendance at the GAA Clubhouse, Páirc na nGael, on Sunday night, January 27 for the AGM of Coiste na nÓg. A presentation was made to Majella Dalton in recognition of her service over the years as Treasurer. Majella has now resigned from that position but will continue to serve as assistant treasurer.
The registration day for all the underage members will be on March 3rd and will take place at the clubhouse.
The Club Chairman, Paul Curry, thanked all those who helped out during the year. Volunteers are needed to help with the running of the underage teams during the coming year, so any help from parents or others who would be available to assist will be welcome.
The following officers were elected for the coming year. Chairman: Paul Curry, Secretary: John Hunt, Treasurer: Tom McEnery, Assistant Treasurer: Majella Dalton, Assistant Secretary and PRO Jacqueline O’Connor.
SOCCER RESULTS: In an U-14 Division 1 game played on January 26, Glin Rovers defeated Athea United 4-0.
Athea United: Timothy Tierney, David O’Sullivan, Liam McAuliffe, Killian Liston, John Sexton, Cathal O’Brien, Shane Dalton, Joseph Dalton. Referee-Gerard O’Connor.