Members of the MU Barnhall Buffalo group
Members of a Kildare rugby club will meet Pope Francis this week.
The 32 strong group from MU Barnhall sets off tomorrow, Tuesday, to Italy, where they will meet the Pope at noon on Wednesday as part of a four day trip, returning on Friday.
There was an air of excitement as what one of their coaches, Cllr Anthony Larkin described as the MU Barnhall Abilities group, gathered for their training session at noon on Sunday,
Last Friday, a table quiz raised just over €2000 towards the trip which will include sightseeing in Rome following arrival tomorrow after an early flight out of Dublin.
The Buffaloes special needs team was established at the club in May 2015 in partnership with St John of God Care Services. It plays regular Sunday fixtures.
The team captain is Paddy McNally, who was recently honoured with a president's award for his tireless commitment to the club on and off the field.
Others players include Big Joe Gannon, Eric Brazil, Steven Hogan, Paul Hogan, Steven Bramble, Caroline Rooney, Ciaran Reilly, Robert Larkin, Jason Finneran, Paul Waters, David Doran, Aidan Winters and Sean Squires will play a match at Arthena rugby club outside of Naples on Thursday and will be wined and dined by that club.
However, whatever about wine, one Buffaloe, Sean Squires told the Leader on Sunday: “I want to have a pint with the Pope.”
The team coaching team includes Janet Larkin, James Jones, Jim Mara, Camille Byrne, Ger Boyd, Luke Ingleton, Shelly Breslin and Larry Cullen.