Cliftonville Football Club Chaplain, Reverend Dario Leal, has written a letter to our supporters this Easter Sunday.
In it, he notes how the Covid-19 pandemic has altered our lives and forced change in the many routines and traditions we had grown so accustomed to.
While taking inspiration from those memories, he is keen for people of all ages to take encouragement from the message of Easter as society continues to work through these challenging times.
Saturday at 3pm.
There are times and dates in our lives that we will remember as long as we live. For example, a wedding, the birth of a family member and the passing of a loved one. Yet other events live in the collective memory. I can clearly remember the day we beat Linfield 6-2. I was there and probably you too. Dates are important. They are like seasons in our lives and they can take us back to places where we can no longer be.
Sometimes it is essential to remember those events and they become our roots. They tell us where we come from and what makes us stay positive in the present and hopeful for the future. This year has been one we will never forget; this pandemic has prevented us from so many things that perhaps we have taken for granted. Even though it feels like a significant loss, we are now able to be more thankful and more appreciative of what was so familiar to us. Like walking to Solitude on a Saturday afternoon and being greeted by Kenny Murdock – he would share the adventures of his journey with a welcoming smile.
I pray for the day we can walk once again together to Solitude, to have that connection that makes us unique. To embrace our team, which for most of this season has played imagining you being there. And whether in victory or defeat, to be grateful for the opportunity to reconnect with each other. Isn’t this the message of Easter? The opportunity to reconnect with God the Father through the death and resurrection of Jesus.
Bless you and come on you Reds!
Rev Dario Leal
Chaplain, Cliftonville FC
Minister, 1st Ballynahinch Presbyterian Church