Sunday was the All-Ireland football final. Dublin beat Kerry. Knock on benefits included no homework for the boys yesterday. Cork and Dublin often win all-Ireland finals, Longford and Roscommon never do. I was talking to two colleagues from these counties today and saying how the Dublin team (or representatives thereof) were going to visit the Dublin primary schools and possibly “give” the children a half day. They were outraged. “But that always happens when your county wins the All-Ireland,” I said. Awkward silence.
Anyhow, we were at mass on Sunday and it was all about humility. We had, from the second reading: “Where do these wars and battles between yourselves start? Isn’t it precisely in the desires fighting inside your own selves?” From the Gospel:“‘What were you arguing about on the way?’ But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest. He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, ‘Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.’” And then our parish priest devoted his sermon to humility and not arguing over who was the greatest and so.
After the prayers of the faithful, the priest added his own prayer to the ones on the leaflet. “Let us pray,” said he “for those in the All-Ireland final and all of those watching from communities around the country.” Herself lent across to me and whispered, “Isn’t the All-Ireland just a big ‘who is the greatest’ competition?”