Kerry fans will be praying for victory in Saturday's All-Ireland SFC final replay against Dublin as evening vigil masses throughout the Kingdom are being changed so as not to clash with the big game.
One priest in the county conceded: “football is the religion at the moment.”
Prayers before the match would do no harm at all and the young Kerry players had inspired the county, said Fr Mossie Brick of Castleisland, one of the several parishes to change times or put in place additional masses before the replay.
A directive was sent from Bishop’s House in Killarney last week telling parishes they could change the times of the evening masses to facilitate the match.
Castleisland parish church has heralded the change as “calm before the storm” in posters and the church newsletter.
The Church of St Stephen and St John will now host its 6.15pm Saturday mass at the earlier time of 5pm.
Fr Brick, an avid GAA fan, said a bit of divine inspiration before the match would do the Kerry side no harm at all.
At 5pm there would be calm and prayer and then afterwards “all hell would break loose” in many houses, he said.
“They are tremendous role models for the young,” Fr Mossie said of the Kerry team, who are bidding to stop Dublin securing a historic fifth All-Ireland title in a row.
“Football is the religion at the moment, really,” Fr Brick said, adding the liturgy and football were linked.
“We take it seriously here. It’s a religion for us,” Fr Brick told Radio Kerry on Monday morning.
St Agatha’s Church in Glenflesk and the Prince of Peace in Fossa, near Killarney, have brought their masses back to 4.30 pm.
St Mary’s Cathedral is to host an extra mass also at 4.30pm as well as its usual 6.15pm vigil.