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Fr. Larry Finnegan remembered in Montserrat

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Fr. George and Fr. Paul celebrate Memorial Mass

Fr. Larry Finnegan - preaching at last Mass in Montserrat

Fr. Larry Finnegan – preaching at last Mass in Montserrat

Parishioners who seemed outnumbered by friends, with spirited and blessed memory of Fr. Larry celebrated his life in a very well attended Memorial Mass on Wednesday, June 10.

The Roman Catholic community thus held the Memorial Mass as planned in honor of the former Parish Priest, Father Larry Finnegan on Wednesday, only ten days after he departed the life he was so ready to leave on this earth having died on May 31. During the mass as had been on the Sunday mass some hymns loved by Fr. Larry were sung, in particular his favourite “There is power in the blood’, with Bennette Roach leading the chant of his favourite Psalm 18 with the response ‘The Lord is my rock and my salvation’.

Church goers along with pastors of other denominations on Montserrat joined in the memorial mass where they shared memories of Fr. Larry who spent a memorable ministry of selflessness with the people, highlighted by his living in the shelter of St. Martin de Pores church during the height of and the first several years of the volcanic crisis.

DSC_0400_1 DSC_0405_1 DSC_0406 DSC_0408 DSC_0421_1

 

 

 

Parish priest Fr.George Agger who with Fr. Paul led the celebration had advised that a few person would “give their memories of Father Larry – memories of him as a parish priest, an educator, a person living in the shelter; how he worked in the Christian Council when he was here,” hoping he said, the celebration would be “in the spirit of joy and celebration of the passing of a very, very great man, who was very much loved here on Montserrat.”

Fr. George began the mass memorializing Fr. Larry. F first thanking God for his spiritual leadership – gifts that we share with all of us on Montserrat. “Fr. Larry was a man who

St. Augustine RC School children sing 'Praise the Lord'

St. Augustine RC School children sing ‘Praise the Lord’

was loved on Montserrat and loved Montserrat – a man who rose to the challenge in the darkest days in Montserrat, in a sense you can almost say – this is a start of the 20th year anniversary, because all of this happened -were it not for the strong influence Father Larry had, strong faith during those dark days…so we thank God for his courage , we thank God for his presence…”

Retired Bishop Riley, whom it was disclosed was referred to with Fr. Larry as ‘the twin’, shared his memories of Fr. Larry and said how the long friendly and spiritual relationship began. That was when Fr. Larry showed up in Harris’ to celebrate with him, his 25 years of pastoral service in Harris. “I was very pleased to see Fr. Larry attending my celebration. From there developed a very close and deep fellowship…” Bishop Riley said.

Bishop Riley reveled about Fr. Larry. “My view he was a genuine man and that was said unto me personally…I appreciated him and he appreciated me, he worked and of course he showed it not by words alone but by actions…he has been very much involve in the Christian community.”

Mrs. Camilla Watts ably facilitated the proceedings of the mass, during which special renditions of song were performed by St. Augustine school children and the Emerald Community Singers, who had been hosted in Ireland by Fr. Larry when they visited during their 40-yr celebration tour.

All of the parishioners who spoke of their memories of Fr. Larry had the one common theme, as already described.

Cedric Osborne confirmed what everyone spoke of Fr. Larry’s determination to remain with those persons who sheltered in the St. Martin de Pores church. His memory presentation ended by saying, “Father Larry was very involved and supportive of the Montserrat Christian Council. He embraced everyone and as the Boy Scout Creed says, “no matter what colour, class or creed, he was a friend to all.”

Cedric choked back tears as he began to recall that Fr. Larry had returned to attend Fr. Gerry’s funeral at which he gave the homily, that he might die wearing his boots like Fr. Gerry did.

Fr. Larry however died peacefully and quietly on May 31 in Ireland after a short illness from cancer following his retirement from active ministry in 2009. He had served in Montserrat from 1993 to 2000,

Mrs. Eileen Edwards, the R C St. Augustine School principal throughout the beginning of the crisis reminded how Fr. Larry led throughout, moved into high gear ‘in 1997 intensified volcanic activity caused many families to leave Montserrat including about 95% of our students, four teachers and the school’s Secretary,” she said. Fr. Larry got into high gear because closing the school was not an option. He approached the Government and requested a loan of three teachers and gave a commitment to open the school for Catholics as well as non-Catholics. Government granted the request and the school opened with 14 students. It was not long before the student population grew to exceed 100.”

Fr. Larry always knew to how look on the positive side even in the most negative situations. He was a tower of strength for all of us during the Volcanic crisis. The Lord knew why he was sent to us at that time,” she said.

She revealed that one overseas parishioner had asked that she share their memory of Fr. Larry, where she wrote: “The love and warmth that emanated from Father Larry was undeniably felt by all that were blessed to be in his presence. He was a man of and for the people. Always humble, never self-glorified; an exemplary example of how God wishes His children to be.”

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A Moment with the Registrar of Lands

DSC_0419

Fr. George and Fr. Paul celebrate Memorial Mass

Fr. Larry Finnegan - preaching at last Mass in Montserrat

Fr. Larry Finnegan – preaching at last Mass in Montserrat

Parishioners who seemed outnumbered by friends, with spirited and blessed memory of Fr. Larry celebrated his life in a very well attended Memorial Mass on Wednesday, June 10.

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The Roman Catholic community thus held the Memorial Mass as planned in honor of the former Parish Priest, Father Larry Finnegan on Wednesday, only ten days after he departed the life he was so ready to leave on this earth having died on May 31. During the mass as had been on the Sunday mass some hymns loved by Fr. Larry were sung, in particular his favourite “There is power in the blood’, with Bennette Roach leading the chant of his favourite Psalm 18 with the response ‘The Lord is my rock and my salvation’.

Church goers along with pastors of other denominations on Montserrat joined in the memorial mass where they shared memories of Fr. Larry who spent a memorable ministry of selflessness with the people, highlighted by his living in the shelter of St. Martin de Pores church during the height of and the first several years of the volcanic crisis.

DSC_0400_1 DSC_0405_1 DSC_0406 DSC_0408 DSC_0421_1

 

 

 

Parish priest Fr.George Agger who with Fr. Paul led the celebration had advised that a few person would “give their memories of Father Larry – memories of him as a parish priest, an educator, a person living in the shelter; how he worked in the Christian Council when he was here,” hoping he said, the celebration would be “in the spirit of joy and celebration of the passing of a very, very great man, who was very much loved here on Montserrat.”

Fr. George began the mass memorializing Fr. Larry. F first thanking God for his spiritual leadership – gifts that we share with all of us on Montserrat. “Fr. Larry was a man who

St. Augustine RC School children sing 'Praise the Lord'

St. Augustine RC School children sing ‘Praise the Lord’

was loved on Montserrat and loved Montserrat – a man who rose to the challenge in the darkest days in Montserrat, in a sense you can almost say – this is a start of the 20th year anniversary, because all of this happened -were it not for the strong influence Father Larry had, strong faith during those dark days…so we thank God for his courage , we thank God for his presence…”

Retired Bishop Riley, whom it was disclosed was referred to with Fr. Larry as ‘the twin’, shared his memories of Fr. Larry and said how the long friendly and spiritual relationship began. That was when Fr. Larry showed up in Harris’ to celebrate with him, his 25 years of pastoral service in Harris. “I was very pleased to see Fr. Larry attending my celebration. From there developed a very close and deep fellowship…” Bishop Riley said.

Bishop Riley reveled about Fr. Larry. “My view he was a genuine man and that was said unto me personally…I appreciated him and he appreciated me, he worked and of course he showed it not by words alone but by actions…he has been very much involve in the Christian community.”

Mrs. Camilla Watts ably facilitated the proceedings of the mass, during which special renditions of song were performed by St. Augustine school children and the Emerald Community Singers, who had been hosted in Ireland by Fr. Larry when they visited during their 40-yr celebration tour.

All of the parishioners who spoke of their memories of Fr. Larry had the one common theme, as already described.

Cedric Osborne confirmed what everyone spoke of Fr. Larry’s determination to remain with those persons who sheltered in the St. Martin de Pores church. His memory presentation ended by saying, “Father Larry was very involved and supportive of the Montserrat Christian Council. He embraced everyone and as the Boy Scout Creed says, “no matter what colour, class or creed, he was a friend to all.”

Cedric choked back tears as he began to recall that Fr. Larry had returned to attend Fr. Gerry’s funeral at which he gave the homily, that he might die wearing his boots like Fr. Gerry did.

Fr. Larry however died peacefully and quietly on May 31 in Ireland after a short illness from cancer following his retirement from active ministry in 2009. He had served in Montserrat from 1993 to 2000,

Mrs. Eileen Edwards, the R C St. Augustine School principal throughout the beginning of the crisis reminded how Fr. Larry led throughout, moved into high gear ‘in 1997 intensified volcanic activity caused many families to leave Montserrat including about 95% of our students, four teachers and the school’s Secretary,” she said. Fr. Larry got into high gear because closing the school was not an option. He approached the Government and requested a loan of three teachers and gave a commitment to open the school for Catholics as well as non-Catholics. Government granted the request and the school opened with 14 students. It was not long before the student population grew to exceed 100.”

Fr. Larry always knew to how look on the positive side even in the most negative situations. He was a tower of strength for all of us during the Volcanic crisis. The Lord knew why he was sent to us at that time,” she said.

She revealed that one overseas parishioner had asked that she share their memory of Fr. Larry, where she wrote: “The love and warmth that emanated from Father Larry was undeniably felt by all that were blessed to be in his presence. He was a man of and for the people. Always humble, never self-glorified; an exemplary example of how God wishes His children to be.”