Easter Sunday worship option for Ulster supporters

limerickUlster rugby supporters travelling to Thomond Park in Limerick on Easter Sunday may be interested to know that Christ Church in O’Connell Street in Limerick are bringing the time of their service forward to 10.30am to accommodate those who are planning to attend the Munster-Ulster quarter final clash in the European Cup.

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Christ Church, Limerick is a united Presbyterian- Methodist congregation and on Easter Sunday the service will be conducted by Rev Tom Kingston. It will include Communion and and after the service there will be tea and coffee for everyone.

I’m reliably informed that a good few Munster fans will attend and will probably wear their Munster shirts as they will go straight to Thomond Park from church – about a 20 minute walk.  Ulster fans are welcome and they, too, may choose to wear their Ulster supporters’ regalia.

My informant in Limerick was eager to point out that Limerick is International City of Sport this year and welcomes sports people of all kinds. She added that Christ Church also welcomes all sinners, whether sports people or not. I was tempted to respond that, given that understanding, no Ulster supporter will feel out of place in Christ Church.

One suggestion that was made to me was that the Munster officials might be persuaded to broadcast a loud “The Lord is Risen” over the public address system prior to the match, and that all Christian supporters, whether in Ulster or Munster colours, could make a united response, “He is risen indeed!”

9 Replies to “Easter Sunday worship option for Ulster supporters”

  1. They would also be very welcome at Limerick Baptist, which is walking distance from the stadium (opposite Limerick Institute of Technology). Although they had better beware that people take their rugby seriously down here. Paul

  2. Work or Play,
    Remember the Day,
    Six days to Play,
    No matter what you Say,
    I will Repay,
    Come what may.

  3. I am at a loss to understand how Sunday sport is an option for the born again believer.
    Rugby fans will no doubt know the name Euan Murray, the tight-head prop for Scotland. He had to miss a crucial World Cup match which was played on a Sunday, because of his Christian faith.

    Mr. Murray said, “I don’t see why there have to be games on Sundays, it’s basically all or nothing, following Jesus. I don’t believe in pick n mix Christianity, I believe the Bible is the Word of God, so who am I to ignore something from it?, I might as well tear out that page and then keep on tearing out pages as and when it suits me. If I started out like that there would soon be nothing left”.

    He also commented,”I want to live my life believing and doing the things God wants and the Lord’s Day is a full day. It’s not a case of a couple of hours in church then playing rugby or going down the pub, it’s a full day.” (Source: The Christian Institute)

    Those Christian players and spectators would be a greater witness for the life changing power of the gospel if they stayed away from sport on Sunday, it’s a “thin edge of the wedge” situation, so what will they next accept?.

  4. Sport on Sunday will always be played as long as it is supported. The same goes for shops opening. While Christ Church may have good intentions they may in fact be easing the conscience of those “Christians” who choose to support sport being played on a Sunday. Perhaps the sermon topic should be why the Lords day should be different from the rest of the days in the week.

  5. The main intention of the Christ Church congregation is to offer Christian hospitality to our Ulster friends and to enable them to worship on Easter Sunday in spite of their love of rugby. We pray the Lord will forgive any flaw in this intention and perhaps Clive will too. God bless all who will travel and grant them a safe journey.

  6. Good for you, Jean, and the rest of the congregation. I suspect that there will be many Ulster Presbyterians in church, in body, on Easter Sunday, while their hearts and minds will be in Limerick. (But no one will know!)

  7. I have not gone to support Ulster on a Sunday before. But I have stayed at home from church to watch them and felt like a proper hypocrite. I have also sat in church with my mind on the match, looking at my watch with a view to getting home for the rugby.
    The Lord’s Day is different and should be different and that is why my friends and I are going to worship in Limerick. It is very easy to sit in judgement and I have been judged on this one because I have made no secret of my intention. Before you cast the first stone ask yourself: Have I ever bought an ice cream on a Sunday afternoon in Newcastle/Bangor/Portstewart? Have I ever gone out for lunch on the Sabbath? Have I ever worked unnecessary overtime on the Lord’s Day? Have I ever missed church while away on holiday? Have I ever just not felt like going to church, but went anyway because if I wasn’t there, it would be noticed.
    Ewan Murray takes his stand as Michael Jones did before him and I applaud them both, but I have to answer for my actions to the Lord God Almighty on this and other things and that is the truth.

  8. Our warmest possible thanks to all the Ulster and Munster fans who helped to make our Easter Sunday service so special.

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