Paidi from Tipperary would like Pope Francis to try hurling when he visits Ireland
Primary school children from across the island of Ireland have expressed their delight at the official announcement that Pope Francis is coming to Ireland in August.
One little boy from Tipperary, called Paidi, has invited the Pope to try a game of hurling during the visit.
Just across the border in Doon, Fionn says he is praying that it won’t rain in August.
Welcome messages from Irish children have been gathered together in a beautifully produced book called Fáilte Pope Francis for the official papal visit as part of the World Meeting of Families in Dublin.
Only a young child would dare to invite the Pope over for a cup of tea and a bun, to tell him his popemobile rocks or to suggest a bit of hurling!
This book started when The Irish Catholic newspaper launched a competition which asked the children aged 6 to 9 to draw a picture and write a letter of welcome addressed to the Pope.
The response from primary schools was so overwhelming, one cuter than the next, that the decision was made to publish a book with the most engaging entries.
The letters range from poetry to recommendations for where Pope Francis should visit in Ireland and what he should wear or eat.
We even have an entry as Gaelige. The incredible variety of pictures of Pope Francis include him piloting a plane through space and meeting a leprechaun under a rainbow.
Have you somewhere to stay when you come to Ireland? We have a spare room in our house and you could meet all my family and friends from school,” Aoife Murphy (7), Dundalk, Co. Louth.
“I will say a prayer that it won’t rain in August,” Fionn (9), Doon, Co. Limerick.
“I would love it if you come to visit us here in Northern Ireland. When Pope John Paul II came to Ireland there was a lot of fighting here but not now,” Shay McAleenan (9), Rathfriland, Co. Down.
“I hope you don’t get a headache with everyone screaming!” Daniel Brogan (9), Oranmore, Co. Galway.
“I want to look after the poor and animals and want to be more like you,” Erin Healy (9), Coolock, Dublin 5.
All royalties from Fáilte Pope Francis go to Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital, Crumlin.