Fr Richie Davern with Mungret, Crecora, Raheen parishioners Connie O’Connell, Karen Smith, Cian O’Brien, Ann Mulcahy, Kathleen Cahill and Marie Campion
NO ONE will forget the feeling after getting your first vaccination jab, says Fr Richie Davern.
The priest and his parish of Mungret, Crecora, Raheen want to replicate that feeling for thousands of others.
Fr Davern came up with the idea of vaccinating the equivalent of their parish population of 12,381 in a poorer part of the world. They have adopted the Unicef message of “Get a vaccine, give a vaccine”.
“It's not just a catchphrase. I think no one will forget the feeling after getting your first vaccination jab. You felt like you finally got a bit of control back in your life. You felt lucky. We are in such a privileged position here in this part of the world.
“If you could replicate that feeling for somebody else for a fiver wouldn't you beat your way to the top of the queue and give it. For the price of a coffee and a chocolate bar you can change somebody's life,” said Fr Davern, who got his idea off the ground thanks to local parishioners.
“I wouldn't have had a hope of doing it without the help of a few young people in the parish that are savvy with all the IT stuff and they set up the GoFundMe page.
“At the end of the day, it's a no brainer. We all want to try to get this thing out of the world as soon as we can and the only way that that is going to happen, hopefully, will be through the vaccinations and other measures,” said Fr Richie.
Crecora and Mungret National School and Gaelscoil an Ráithín, as well as Mungret St Pauls and Crecora GAA Clubs have come on board and lent their support.
“Everyone is trying to do their bit to promote it. I'd love to see other parishes run with it. We might make a big difference between all of us,” said Fr Davern, who describes it as “a practical Christian response to a situation that we are in”.
He said while we can pray to God, we have plenty of ability to get up ourselves and do something.
“One vaccine will make a difference to one person's life,” said Fr Davern. And they hope to change thousands of lives.
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