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East Belfast pupils and churches consider events of 1916

March 13, 2016

Ethical Remembering GilnahirkPupils from seven schools in the Castlereagh and East Belfast area recently gathered together with local Braniel and Gilnahirk churches to take a religious and ethical look at two major events in Northern Ireland’s history.

The young people, all of whom were born in and around the time of the signing of the Good Friday Agreement, shared their different perspectives on the Easter Rising and the Battle of the Somme at an event hosted by Our Lady and St Patrick’s College, Knock. Also taking part were Campbell College, Bloomfield Collegiate, Strathearn School, Grosvenor Grammar, Lagan College, Ashfield Girls and Ashfield Boys.

The main speaker was Professor Laurence Kirkpatrick from the Systematic Theology and Church History Department of Union Theological College, and clergy and church leaders from the Gilnahirk churches also participated.

Dr Frances Vasey, Principal of Grosvenor Grammar, described the event as a ‘wonderful opportunity in a very secure, very safe environment, to talk about events, to share opinions about history and to look forward to the future’.

Pictured at the event are (from left): Dermot Mullan (Principal of Our Lady and St Patrick’s College), Professor Laurence Kirkpatrick, the Rev Nigel Kirkpatrick (St Dorothea’s), Susan McFarland (Braniel Community Church), the Rev Stephen Moore (Gilnahirk Presbyterian), Josh Newell (Campbell College), Rebecca Gilmore (Our Lady and St Patrick’s College), Laura Hutcheson (Gilnahirk Presbyterian) and the Rev John Wonnacott (Braniel Methodist). Also present, but not pictured, was a representative of St Colmcille’s parish.

(Photo and report: Annette McGrath)



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