Monday 23 August 2021: Bishop of Limerick Brendan Leahy has today thanked John Kiely and his Limerick team for the joy and example they gave the people of Limerick on and off the field in claiming a third All-Ireland title in four years.
Congratulating the players and management on the result, Bishop Leahy said that there are many lessons outside of sport to be gleaned from what has been achieved by the two-in-a-row Liam McCarthy Cup winners.
“First and foremost, I want to say congratulations to the Limerick team, its management and everyone involved in this incredible success. It has been such a difficult 18 months or so for everyone but we are very privileged to have had our spirits lifted by their brilliant hurling and ultimate success.
“Everyone involved have been responsible for bringing the people of Limerick on such a journey that has been a wonderful distraction from our other challenges and woes in this world today. They really have raised the spirits of the entire county, put a smile on our faces and wiped stresses away for so many. That is a gift to us all that we have to be very grateful for.”
However, Bishop Leahy said that there was an even more profound message coming from the team, wider squad, management and background set-up. “For me, there was a deeper life-lesson from them, captured brilliantly by Cian Lynch in his post-match interview when he talked about the team ethic. He talked about the last 18 months, how they were always able to depend on each other and how every man was ‘on the next man’s shoulders’.
“I was struck in particular by his words: ‘for any young girl or boy aspiring to represent your county in any sport, be a team player and keep driving on’. These are inspirational words that speak to the need to always be there for each other. It’s a lesson that can be translated to family, to the workplace, to friendship and can stand us in such good stead in challenging times and, no doubt, there were those along the journey for this team too. Essentially, the message we can take from this is that we can only do so much on our own in life but together with others, we can scale mountains, just like this Limerick team.”
He added: “There’s a deep culture of togetherness built within that Limerick squad and so much of this clearly goes back to the leadership of John Kiely and his management team. We salute them all and thank them for this.”