I was very impressed with a fluent and very fit Roscommon team in Letterkenny last Sunday. We were fortunate not to have conceded a few more goals in a ragged defence which Roscommon breached too often.
Neil McGee, Leo McLoone and Frank McGlynn were sorely missed on the day. It was great to have Karl Lacey back though. We were practically on the back foot for most of the game. We did make a recovery in the second half but when Odhran MacNiallais was sent off our fightback ceased. Donegal team manager Rory Gallagher will have learned much more from our defeats to Kerry and Roscommon in our last two games than he will from the first three league victories. We have a bit of work to do but I still believe that we will make the league play-offs. Michael Murphy was yet again immense and at times I wondered on Sunday where we’d be without him.
We have two important games against Monaghan and Dublin respectively. It will go down to the wire. The league has become that more interesting since our defeat to Roscommon. In the meantime we have the feast of St. Patrick to celebrate.
St.Patrick’s Day is celebrated worldwide which is commercially driven and not to remember Patrick as the saint who brought faith to a country that worshipped snake and serpent gods. He was born in Roman Britain in 387. When he was fourteen or so, he was captured by Irish pirates during a raiding party and taken to Ireland as a slave to herd and tend sheep. At the time, Ireland was a land of Druids and pagans but Patrick turned to God. His captivity lasted until he was twenty, when he escaped after having a dream from God in which he was told to leave Ireland by going to the coast. There he found some sailors who took him back to Britain and was reunited with his family.
Patrick arrived back in Ireland (Slane) on March 25, 433. There are several legends about what happened next; with the most prominent claiming he met the chieftain of one of the druid tribes, who tried to kill him. After an intervention from God, Patrick was able to convert the chieftain and preach the Gospel throughout Ireland. There, he converted many people -eventually thousands - and he began building churches across the country.
He often used shamrocks to explain the Holy Trinity and entire kingdoms were eventually converted to Christianity after hearing Patrick's message.
Patrick preached and converted all of Ireland for 40 years. He worked many miracles and wrote of his love for God in Confessions. After years of living in poverty, travelling and enduring much suffering he died March 17, 461. So complete was his trust in God, and of the importance of his mission, he feared nothing -not even death.
He died at Saul, where he had built the first Irish church. He is believed to be buried in Down Cathedral, Downpatrick. His grave was marked in 1990 with a granite stone.
On a lighter note and since it’s all things Irish this week here’s a wee joke for you: An Italian lawyer and an Irishman are sitting next to each other on a long flight. The lawyer is thinking that Irishmen are so dumb that he could put something over on them easily…So the lawyer asks if the Irishman would like to play a fun game. The Irishman is tired and just wants to take a nap, so he politely declines and tries to catch a few winks. The Italian lawyer persists, and says that the game is a lot of fun.
I ask you a question, and if you don’t know the answer, you pay me only €5.00; you ask me one, and if I don’t know the answer, I will pay you €500.00, he says. This catches the Irishman’s attention and to keep the lawyer quiet, he agrees to play the game. The lawyer asks the first question. ‘What’s the distance from The Earth to the Moon?’ The Irishman doesn’t say a word, reaches in his pocket pulls out a five euro note and hands it to the lawyer.
Now, it’s the Irishman’s turn. He asks the lawyer, ‘What goes up a hill with three legs, and comes down with four?’ The lawyer uses his laptop and searches all references he could find on the Net. He sends e-mails to all the smart friends he knows, all to no avail. After over an hour of searching he finally gives up. He wakes up the Irishman and hands him €500.00
The Irishman pockets the €500.00 and goes right back to sleep. The lawyer is going nuts not knowing the answer.
He wakes the Irishman up and asks, ‘Well, so what goes up a hill with three legs and comes down with four?’ The Irishman reaches in his pocket, hands the lawyer €5.00 and goes back to sleep.
Coinnigh an creideamh agus Lá Fhéile Pádraig sona daoibh.