DÓCHAS: Dóchas is the Gaelic word for hope and it is also the name of the charity that works with young people that are afflicted with Autism. The people involved with this organisation are filled with hope, charity and good will and do great work with the young people. On this weekend Dóchas will be holding a church gate collection outside all churches at Mass times and your support will be gratefully appreciated. Please give generously to a worthy organisatiion.
BALLYCUMMIN: The following item is the result of research and publication in a parish magazine for Mungret some years ago. It is all the work of former priest there, Fr. Liam Enright who is now parish priest in Crecora. It was about the town-land of Ballycummin and should be of interest to new residents and perhaps many more who are there for a longer period. It bears little or no comparison to the present town-land of Ballycummin that has many different residents, more houses and premises. Its overall rural profile has changed completely and now it has the image of being a village and hinterland. Tillage is very little or not at all and the motor car has made it just a place for most of the residents to dwell there.
The Irish name is Baile Chuimín meaning Cummin’s town or Baile Uí Chomain from Commons. This town-land contains 698acres. It is bounded on the north side by the line of road that links Limerick and Patrickswell. In 1840 it was the property of Sir David Roche, Caherass, Limerick. Part of the town-land was let to 14 tenants. The size of farms varied from two to thirty-four acres. The soil was light and gravelly and partly loamy. It produced wheat, oats and potatoes. Fuel was plentiful.
Prevailing names were Heffernan, Kiely, Herbert, Hallinan, Walsh, Hogan, Murray, Quin. There was a police station there containing one sergeant and four sub-constables. The cottage residence of Rev. J. Moore had an orchard attached. The Roman Catholic chapel was thatched and in bad repair. It contained about four hundred person. It was situated some hundred yards south-east from the present church. The school contained about twenty boys and ten girls all Roman Catholic. The teacher was paid by the pupils. There were two forts here one of which was called Ballycummin.
ST. PAULS SCHOOL: The Minister for Education and Skills, Mr. Ruairí Quinn, announced some time ago that he had a budget of fifteen million which he had ear-marked to spend in the improvement of some primary schools and also for the construction of some new schools. He did not announce nor did he specify which schools he had planned this money for nor did he say where the new schools would be built. As announced last June, the Department of Education has allocated €15m to allow 46 primary and second-level schools build new classrooms in place of mostly rented prefabs in the current school year. An article appeared during the past couple of weeks in one of the National daily newspapers and the following hereunder is part of this article:-
“Most of the funding will be spent in 2014, resulting in moves for around 2,600 pupils, but 99 projects from a previous replacement initiative have been completed since June.
That earlier scheme, launched in spring 2012 by Education Minister Ruairi Quinn, set out to replace 458 prefabs with permanent accommodation at 170 schools. With more than €37m already spent, 129 projects are now finished and 29 more are under way.The cost of renting school accommodation, mostly — but not all — on prefabs, has fallen from €39m in 2009 to just over €25m this year.”
“It means that thousands of pupils and their teachers finally have a quality roof over their heads — often after many years of teaching and learning in prefabs,” the minister said.
St. Paul’s National School started out as a parish school that at one time served the families of the parish by providing education for the children of the parish. This it did very well and that was its brief at that time. But time moved on and so did the pupils and as always happens time discloses all eventually. In the meantime there has been an increase in the size of the parish and there are many, many more houses and families living in the district and likewise in nearby and surrounding districts. Consequently, there is a greater number of children seeking national education and this number has been progressively exacerbated by children from the many immigrant families now living in the area. Now there are over seven hundred pupils in St. Paul’s school with many more seeking admission as soon as there is room for them to start
The cost of renting school accommodation, mostly — but not all — on prefabs, has fallen from €39m in 2009 to just over €25m this year.”
St. Paul’s National School in Dooradoyle is an old school building that has had to rely on many pre-fabricated buildings to accommodate its hugely increased school going population.
The number of pre-fab buildings on this small patch of ground just below the school-yard and school building now numbers eleven. There are two more pre-fab classrooms on the other side of the school and this brings the total number of classrooms in pre-fab buildings in St. Paul’s school to thirteen. Yet, all those that were seeking a place in the school were not accommodated and there is no more ground on which to place pre-fabs. To say the least the number at present is excessive and it is not the ideal environment for to teach the pupils. In fact, it is not ideal either for the teachers to teachen. These pre-fab buildings are to prevent the turning away of the many pupils who applied for position in St. Paul’s National School. This school, once a parish school, is now with more than seven hundred pupils a very big primary school that once catered for pupils of the parish but now caters for pupils from many districts. There are pupils from several different countries with many different cultures, religions, languages and skin-colours all of whom are seeking to be educated for the first steps of life. The teachers’ job is responsible and difficult but these young people confidently rely and depend upon the teacher who is, to use the current phrase, the front-line staff member. Success to all involved. Little has changed in the past two years for there is a big number still applying for a place in St. Paul’s school and it is quite probable that all will not gain admission due to a lack of accommodation.
There are now circa seven hundred pupils in this school and there are many, many more who have applied for entry in the new school year. Needless to remark the teachers, parents and pupils at St. Paul’s National School will be watching with more than a little interest when these monies are being distributed. The school in the nearby Raheen district also has the same problems and has been relying on pre-fabricated buildings for many years to alleviate it’s problems.
The Local Authority, the Limerick County Council cum Limerick City Council, is very well aware that St. Paul’s and St. Nessan’s schools have been functioning with over-capacity pupil numbers for many years now and have had to rely on pre-fabricated classrooms . In fact, suitable and adequate sites are being sought for new primary and secondary schools on the southern side of the city cum county. This correspondent understands that negotiations are ongoing at present to acquire these sites and hopefully they will be successful. However, it is high time that the pre-fabricated situation in these two schools was addressed and that permanent classrooms were built. The sooner the difficulties are addressed the better for everybody and that includes the Government financially speaking.
CREDIT UNION: The Mungret/St. Paul’s Credit Union will hold its Annual General Meeting on next Monday, January 20 at 8pm in Ballybrown Community Resource Centre in Clarina. All the members are invited and encouraged to attend. Not only have members a right to know your local Credit Union but you have the right also to know how it is being administered and also its financial situation. You could say you have the right of freedom of information as a member and your questions or suggestions are welcome and may be important. Refreshments will be served and a draw for the members in attendance will take place on the night.
A.A. MEETINGS:The St. Paul’s group of Alcoholics Anonymous meets in the St. Paul’s national school on three evenings of the week at 20.30hours. They come together on each Monday, Thursday and Saturday. If you are having difficulty with your drinking habits you are cordially invited and are welcome.
BAPTISMS: The Sacrament of Baptism is performed as required each Saturday evening and again on Sundays after the 12.15pm Mass. There is a request form available for Baptism that must be completed and handed into the Sacristy of St. Paul’s church or to Fr. John Leonard, P.P. or to Fr. Eugene Boyce at least two weeks before the Baptism ceremony takes place.
SOCIAL SERVICE CENTRE: There is to be two collections at all Masses in St. Paul’s church this weekend. The second collection is to support the Limerick Social Service Centre in Henry St. There are many services in operation in this centre and it delivers a great variety of services each day for many people that are in difficult circumstances. Your support will be very welcome.
Maranatha: The Maranatha prayer ministry, retreat and healing service will take place in ST. Paul’s church on Sunday, January 18 cocommencing at 2.30 pm until 7.30pm. All worshippers are welcome.
SAMARITANS: This charitable organisation that does so much good work with people who are about to commit themselves to engaging in self-harm or suicide is seeking volunteers. It had a special appeal for volunteers and a meeting was held on Monday evening and it was agreed that a second meeting would take place on Saturday, January 18 at 2.0 pm for those who were unable to be present for Monday’s evening meeting. The meeting will take place in the Samaritan’s centre on Barrington Street.
LITTER: The problem of Limericks litter has been greatly improved and this has been acknowledged in the latest report on Ireland’s cities. However, our district in not entirely without its difficulties in this respect for with the disposable of empty cartons, coffee beakers, bottles and beer cans it would appear that some individuals seem to think that any bush, hedge, garden or empty area that happens to be convenient will do for the disposal of whatever is no longer required. Some individuals have gone so far as to dump bags of rubbish in the front of Marshall House and in front of the house occupied by the Jesuit community on the Dooradoyle road.
The problem of litter has been an on-going issue in this district as it is also in other districts. Some parts of the district are very well kept but some other parts are not litter free. For example not too far from the shops on the Mulcair road there are papers and wrappings of sweets and ice-pops to be seen notwithstanding that one shop has a waste bin outside its premises. It is obvious that those that dispose of them care little about their environs and you can conclude that litter matters nil to them.
NATIONAL SPRING CLEAN: Although it may seem that time-wise to be far off National Spring Clean commences in April. This is Ireland’s leading anti-litter initiative and it is never too soon to start and your personal assistance is welcome.
BLOOD WANTED: Last week a spokesperson for the Irish Blood Transfusion Service was on the National airwaves telling listeners and viewers that blood supplies in reserve were dangerously low and that just sufficient for five to six days supplies remained whereas the normal reserve situation would be five to nine days supplies. He attributed this factor to the severe weather conditions with would-be donors unable to travel to the donation clinics because of the severe weather conditions. The blood groups O and A negative were especially very low. There was an emergency clinic at the South Court hotel before Christmas seeking donations. The weather conditions have caused many problems for all services and this will persist for as long as the hard weather continues. The Irish Blood Transfusion Service will visit Limerick on January Tuesday 2i when it will hold a donation clinic in the South Court hotel from 5.0-8.0 pm. All the usual donors are requested to attend and new donors will be very welcome to attend.
EUCHARISTIC ADORATION: There was a meeting in St. Paul’s church recently of persons interested in arranging a date for the resumption of the Eucharistic Adoration every Wednesday in the Sacred Heart chapel attached to the church. It was agreed that the Eucharistic adoration would commence on last Wednesday and the adoration will continue each Wednesday now hereafter. After the 10.00am Mass in St. Paul’s the adoration will continue all day until 10.00pm at night. There will be at least one person present with the Blessed Sacrament throughout the whole day into the night. You are very welcome to call in and spend some time in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.
SEE YOUR WAY: If you have spectacles (glasses) that you no longer use or that have been replaced by new glasses the International Lions club is collecting them for recycling to a developing country. It is its intention to pass them on to developing countries for use where they will be of benefit. If you wish to dispose of your old spectacles there is a box in the porch-way of the Dooradoyle library where they are collected. Your voluntary gesture of disposed spectacles will be beneficial and very welcome.