THE PARISH OF ANTRIM CELEBRATED 140 YEARS ANNIVERSARY.
In November 2010 our parish marked the one hundred and fortieth anniversary of the solemn dedication and blessing of our present chapel, St Comgall’s Antrim, by the Most Rev Dr Dorrian, Bishop of Down and Connor on 30th October 1870. This notable landmark in the history of the Parish of Antrim brought together the past, the present and the future.
The day of celebration centred round a magnificent exhibition of documents, newspaper articles and photographs that told the story of our parish, which many of us either didn’t know or had forgotten. In the booklet published to mark the event Fr Sean Emerson said, ‘ it is not just the building that we are grateful for but the faith that the people of many generations have shared, are sharing and will share that is really important’.
On behalf of the parishioners and priests of the parish, Fr Sean Emerson PP warmly congratulated and thanked our sacristan Brendan Smith for the whole idea and presentation; his planning and organising of the day’s events and for his tireless work and great enthusiasm which inspired everyone who visited the exhibition.
A huge tribute was paid to the hard work and dedication of Father O’Loughlin under whose personal supervision St Comgall’s Chapel was built. During the building of the church he was obliged to reside in the Sacristy of the old church but before long he started building our present beautiful Parochial House. The parishioners were greatly honoured and welcomed Father O’Loughlin’s relatives who joined us from Donegal for Mass and to celebrate the memorable event.
As was fitting for the occasion the day finished with a dignified celebration of evening prayer in St Comgall’s Church led by Bishop Noel Treanor along with Fathers Sean Emerson PP, Felix McGuckin CC and Canon Malachy Murphy (Assistant Priest). The music and singing led by the choirs from St Joseph’s, St Mac Nissi’s and St Comgall’s truly added to the wonderful celebration and the parishioners were delighted to welcome back many of the priests who had lived and worked in the parish in more recent years who returned to joined us in marking the event.