KERRY priest Fr Brendan Walsh’s devotion to Liverpool FC is well documented but he can rest assured that he’ll never have to walk alone when it comes to cheering on the reds in the diocese.
The popular Ballyduff PP hit the headlines on the day of his 60th birthday when a cake emblazoned with the Liverpool crest was brought to the altar and the choir burst into a rousing version of the club anthem You’ll Never Walk Alone.
But Fr Brendan wasn’t the only member of the clergy in Kerry roaring on the reds as they clinched the Champions League crown with a 2-0 victory over Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday night.
Tension was also at fever pitch in Our Lady and St Brendan’s parish in Tralee on Saturday night where PP Fr Padraig Walsh is also a devoted Liverpool fan.
He resisted the temptation to don the red jersey when he took to the altar the following morning but did wear red vestments as part of his own mini tribute to the club he has followed since he was a boy growing up in Countess Road in Killarney.
“The jersey might have been a small bit skimpy but I thought red was a good compromise,” Fr Walsh told Newstalk radio this morning.
With his tongue planted firmly in his cheek, Fr Walsh asked the congregation for forgiveness for not delivering a sermon on Sunday as he found it hard to focus on preparing a homily after the excitement of the match.
He said if Jesus was with them he would reassure them that they would never walk alone and that prompted the folk group in Our Lady and St Brendan’s Church to deliver a rousing version of the Anfield anthem at the close of Mass.
Fr Walsh pointed out that You’ll Never Walk Alone is actually a great song with a great message.
“At the start of the FA Cup final they sing Abide With Me so I suppose if they can sing hymns in Wembley we can surely sing football songs in St Brendan’s in Tralee,” the PP said.
“The whole Church was singing You’ll Never Walk Alone – it was very moving and very fitting,” said Fr Walsh who said he has supported Liverpool since his schooldays when players of the calibre of Steve Heighway, Kenny Dalglish and Ian Rush were household names.
Meanwhile, while Fr Padraig Walsh and Fr Brendan Walsh have cause to celebrate this week, spare a thought for Fr Kevin McNamara in Moyvane – a passionate Everton FC Take it as redfan – who has no choice but to listen to the noisy neighbours.
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