Silver Jubilee: Fr John McGinley

Fr John McGinley celebrated his Silver Jubilee as a priest with a Vespers in Our Lady and St George’s parish on the vigil of St Andrew, and a Mass in St Stephen’s, Dalmuir on the day itself.

A very large congregation braved the winter snow for the Mass and buffet in St Stephen’s. People came from John’s previous parishes including St Anne’s, Dennistoun and from Our Lady and St George’s, and there was a large contingent from his home parish of St Stephen’s. The parish Advent Wreath was a spectacular sight for guests to the parish and was much admired..

Some of the St Mungo Singers joined the local choir and cantors went along to support the singing. Noel Donnelly played the Clarsach before and during Mass, and the choir, though small in numbers because of the weather, sang Arcadelt’s Ave Maria before the opening hymn, When Christ our Lord to Andrew Cried.

After welcoming his priestly colleagues and the RevDr Laurence Whitley of Glasgow Cathedral, John led us in the Penitential Rite and in the sung Kyrie – known as the ‘Russian’ Kyrie but seemingly from the Ukraine. Frank Duffy’s Bellahouston Gloria was sung with warmth and thanksgiving.

Psalm 22 and the ‘Alleluia Go make disciples from the recent Papal Mass in Glasgow seemed appropriate for the occasion, as were John’s choice of the Celtic Invocation and To Christ the Seed. The Kelvinhall Sanctus and Memorial seemed well known to the gathering and even the small group of singers was able to sustain the supporting harmonies.

The Blessing was enriched with John Bell’s God to enfold you, Christ to uphold…. And the final hymn – chosen to link with the Ordination of 25 years ago was Go ye afar.

Fr Martin and the community at St Stephen’s were outstanding in their welcome and their hospitality – and a great night was had by all.