I hope this note finds you in good health, adhering to the difficult, but necessary protocols that have been established to help combat the spread of COVID-19.
Though we are certainly not marking today the way we expected to, and indeed many of the celebrations that we not only look forward to have been cancelled, it is still St. Patrick’s Day.
Taking a step back from the onslaught of media reports of testing, social distancing, incubation periods, and all the other phrases that now roll off our tongues way too easily, I am reminded that for us, celebrating our Irishness is something we do 365 days a year.
Whether it’s gathering together for a networking event, welcoming an author to a book signing, assisting a delegation of Irish business leaders visiting the US to plant new roots, supporting a J1 student in their effort to get the most of their time in the US, enjoying the performance of a great Irish playwright or musician, or any of the dozens of other activities our chapters, and other like-minded organizations engage in regularly, strengthening Ireland’s bonds with the Global Irish is happening every day.
The phrase Ni neart go cur le cheile comes to mind during these challenging days, and indeed we can be confident that not only are better days ahead, but that we will get to those days together.
I hope you can take some comfort in knowing that when the day finally comes when COVID-19 is no longer the top news story, our bonds to Ireland will still exist, and with the continued support and commitment of each of you, be stronger than ever.
Better days are coming soon, and, if we want something to really look forward to, I am proud to offer a reminder that our 8th annual national conference will be held this year in Cleveland, and start on September 17. It takes only a quick look at the calendar to note that the day we will convene together again also marks the halfway point to St. Patricks’s Day.
You can be sure that we will make the most of it.