Priest puts safety first this
A PRIEST has added an
extra vigil Mass this Christmas Eve to stop large
crowds posing a health and safety risk in his
Culdaff-born Fr Paddy O’Kane (69) said bigger than
usual congregations at the 6pm festive vigil had led
to concerns in previous years at his Holy Family
Church in Ballymagroarty, Derry city.
As a result, he has added another Mass at 7.30pm to
facilitate the pre-Santa rush on the aisles.
Parishioners in the
9,000-strong parish can also choose to attend a
vigil at 9pm or one of three Masses celebrated on
The long-serving parish priest also appealed for
extra stewards to help marshal the festive crowds on
December 24th and 25th.
“Because of the large crowds we experienced in the
past at the 6pm vigil Mass we have added another
vigil Mass for reasons of health and safety,” Fr
“Please come to any of the five other Christmas
Masses if you wish to be more comfortable. Extra
stewards will be needed at all Masses,” he appealed
through the parish newsletter.
Fr Paddy O'Kane.
Inishowen-born priest said he was delighted that he
could continue offering three Sunday Masses in the
new year. He said he had enlisted the help of three
retired priests to help him out.