The incoming President of the GAA Liam O'Neill has dismissed a claim by TV3 that the Association is not holding a Mass at next month’s GAA Annual Congress, to be held at the Heritage Hotel in Killenard in County Laois.
It is traditional for the GAA, which has Archbishop of Cashel Dr Dermot Clifford as its Patron, to hold a Mass at the venue of the Congress after the motions have concluded on the Saturday evening.
TV3 had reported earlier that delegates this year will be made aware of a regular Saturday evening Mass at a nearby church which will have no official involvement.
Reports in one national newspaper had suggested that there was unease in the Association about giving one religion precedence over another and whether or not a religious ceremony should form a part of what is a sporting event.
However, Liam O'Neill who will take over the Presidency from Cork native Christy Cooney has dismissed the report.
“I really don't understand how TV3 could have construed that from our arrangements. The fact of the matter is that Congress is being held in Killenard in a hotel which is opposite the church, and for the first time ever, we're using the church for the Congress Mass because it would be a shame to have Mass in a room when you have a wonderful church within 50 yards walk of the main door. So far from downgrading the Mass, we are actually upgrading it.”