I used to live here! At the moment there are huge restoration works going on and the entire building has been "gutted". In addition to the main house there is now a family room added in the woods. This will provide much needed privacy and extra space for the new rector. The work has been done with great sensitivity, even to the matching of the chimney pot. It just happens that the company who are doing the work are from Kilkeel!
But the reason I was back there was a very sad one. A good friend died and his funeral was today. It seems no time ago that he was confirmed in Magherally - the oldest person I'd ever prepared for that important event and the oldest one that the Bishop had confirmed. Two of his grandchildren were in the youth class and confirmed that year as well.
Alex was a great man - born in Medicine Hat - but lived in Ireland from he was eight years old. It was a privilege to be his rector and to get to know his family in both good times and bad. Dedicated to family, and to Christ, Alex made a big impact on many lives during his eighty years here. May the family circle, his friends and his church know the comfort of the Holy Spirit.
For all your servants departed this life in your faith and fear,
for the example they have left us,
and for the blessed hope of reunion with them hereafter.
We thank you, Lord,
and bless your holy name.
Book of Common Prayer