Dear Pioneers, our many good friends and our supporters throughout Ireland and indeed the world at large,
Just a little message to you at this unprecedented time. Now, in the middle of May 2020, it is utterly unbelievable and unimaginable what has occurred from the February 2020 since we first heard of this thing called Coronavirus or Covid-19. It has seriously upset our Pioneer programme of events for 2020 as it has affected the plans for so many other people as well.
I hope that you are all well and staying safe. As most of our membership is in the senior age bracket and has to ‘hibernate’ for the present time, the best approach, difficult as it may be, is to observe the rules and regulations that are set before us. We hope and pray that, as the fight to contain this virus wins out, sometime in the near future we can get back to some form of normality.
In the meantime, it is a good opportunity to look back at our recent history through the Pioneer website and our Facebook Page and at our many wonderful events over the past number of years. Just to recall the last couple of events: the Pioneer Conference in Saint Columban’s College in Dalgan Park, Navan, County Meath in November 2019.
This weekend conference was the centrepiece of a year of celebration to acknowledge the work of the past 120 years and what the future holds for the Association. Also, the Mass in Gardiner Street Church on the 1 February 2020 marked that very special occasion of the founding of the Association on the 28 December 1898 in that very same church.
Every day now brings us a day closer to when we can meet up again. So we can have our meetings at all the various levels, our spiritual gatherings for Masses, our pilgrimages and the many presentation nights with the awarding of emblems and certificates.
From having a small group that can enjoy a cup of tea, a sandwich or a nice pastry, up to a larger group that can have a Dinner Dance with a fine meal, music, dance and plenty of chat and banter. That is what we look forward to as we navigate our way around and out of this difficult time.
Many organisations are rallying around those in their communities who may be in need of help. I would ask any of our members who are in a position to do so, to offer themselves to help out in their communities in whatever ways are necessary and appropriate.
Stay safe and stay well, and I look forward to meeting many of you in the not too distant future.
May the Sacred Heart of Jesus protect us at this unique and very trying time.
President Pioneer Total Abstinence Association of the Sacred Heart