St Patrick’s Cathedral to Host Ecumenical Service Celebrating Contribution to the GAA of All Faiths
St Patrick’s Cathedral, Dublin, will host a special service celebrating inclusivity on Sunday May 26. The ecumenical choral evensong will take place at 3.15pm. Special guests include the Sam Maguire and Liam MacCarthy cups. Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, Seán Ó hÓráin, and Dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral, The Very Revd Dr William Morton, have extended a joint invitation to people of all faiths and none to join them for this unique gathering.
The service will acknowledge the rich tapestry of cultures and creeds that since 1884 continue to contribute to the enhancement of Gaelic games, culture, and life on Ireland and beyond. It will feature contributions from a variety of figures from the GAA and Irish community and church life.
John Horan, GAA President, said: “We are privileged that the National Cathedral of the Church of Ireland will host us for this service of inclusivity. We need look no further than one of the most iconic names in the GAA – Sam Maguire – to recognise the diversity that has helped make the GAA what it is today.
“We recently launched the GAA’s new manifesto under the banner ‘Where we all Belong’. That represents a call to action as much as a state of play and I hope this service embodies a modern GAA and a modern Ireland; one where we celebrate all cultures and faiths. We hope everyone sees a place for themselves in the GAA and will join us for this service.”
The Very Revd Dr William Morton said: “We are very pleased to welcome the GAA to this special service. The historic connection between the GAA and the Church of Ireland broke new ground in times past; it’s vital to continue to stand together for inclusivity and welcome in an increasingly diverse world.
Sam Maguire was a parishioner of St. Mary’s Church of Ireland, Dunmanway. He rose to prominence in the GAA as chairperson of the London County Board following a successful playing career. (Coincidently, Vice–Chairman of the London County Board was Liam MacCarthy who gave his name to the All–Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Cup.)
The famous All Ireland football championship cup was presented to the GAA in his honour a year after his death in 1927. In 2017, the local parish and community, with the support of a grant from the GAA, restored the six original bells in the church tower while adding two new ones inscribed with Sam Maguire’s name and dates (1877–1927).
An open invitation is extended to all those who wish to attend the service.