Fr Sean Fitzgerald RIP
On the Friday and Saturday before the wonderful celebration of Glasgow the Welcoming City, the choir gathered to say farewell to a longtime supporter and friend, Fr Sean Fitzgerald, who was a very close friend of Mgr Gerry since their days in seminary together.
Fr Sean died on 28th May 2023, just a month short of his Diamond Jubilee. He had suffered for many years from Parkinson’s and had lived in the Little Sisters of the Poor Home in Robroyston. For the choir, the memory was of him as a welcoming host at St Kessog’s in Balloch and a well-kent face at so many diocesan events.
His funeral took place in St Mary Immaculate, Pollokshaws. At the Vigil service on 9th June, Fr John Carroll, Parish Priest, who had met him in 1985 when he (Fr. John) was a student, recalled fond memories of someone who was a great pastoral priest, with a love of the Eucharist and his priesthood, who even on the most difficult days of his illness when he stayed for a time at St Mary’s was always on the sanctuary for Mass.
The following day, the funeral Mass was presided over by Archbishop Nolan who reflected that Fr Sean was so active and concerned for his parishioners. He promoted the liturgy and was also involved in social action too, getting his parishioners to be outgoing in supporting others in developing countries.
Among other things, he had helped to build and support an orphanage in Uganda (where there is a street named Sean Fitzgerald Avenue after him), and he had encouraged parishioners to go out to Thailand and help rebuild after the 2004 tsunami. He proclaimed the fullness of the message of the Gospel. Now he had answered the final call of the Lord, to the banquet of the Lamb.
There was laughter when the Archbishop said Fr Sean had also asked that he be remembered for being part of an Archdiocesan football team who had played, and beaten, a Glasgow Police football team in his younger days!