The annual November Mass of remembrance for those whose final committal took place in the cemeteries in St. Agnes parish or at Maryhill Crematorium returned this year after a break following the death of Parish Priest Fr. Noel Barry. His successor, Fr. Willie Monaghan welcomed relatives and friends of the deceased to St. Agnes on 6 November, and they were joined by parishioners and members of the St. Mungo Singers who led the music of the Mass.
In his homily, referring to the Gospel for the day, Fr. Willie drew attention to the fact that here we had a rare insight from the Lord into the Kingdom of Heaven. There can be no description of the wonder of God’s presence and the joys that await but Jesus’ words indicate that we remain human but, like the angels, we shall no longer die; we shall experience joy and love.
The music of the Mass was a beautiful blend of classic and modern, from the plainsong Introit Requiem Aeternam, through George Matheson’s O Love that Wilt not Let Me Go to more recent music for this November season such as How Blest are Those Who have Died in the Lord and Just as Jesus Died and Rose.
The Mass ended with a sung blessing (Noel Donnelly’s May the Lord Bless and Keep You). Fr. Monaghan had begun the Mass by welcoming people to what he called “this joyful occasion” and the final motet by the choir – Botor’s Misericordias Domini – reminded us in its words of the reason for joy and hope: “I will sing forever of the Lord’s….because his mercy lasts forever”. A fitting hymn also as the Year of Mercy draws to its close.