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  • Writer's pictureLove Ballymena

New priest for Ballymena as parish says emotional farewell to Msgr Delargy and Fr Lumala

Members of the Kirkinriola Parish, Ballymena, last week held a Mass of Thanksgiving (Friday 8 July) as Monsignor Paddy Delargy and Father Aloysius Lumala gets ready for pastures new.

Following the Mass, ‘An Evening of Celebration’ was hosted in the Parish Centre, as a farewell to the much loved and respected duo. Johnny & Dickie, the Crawley family, John O' Hara, the Folk Group, and Fr Liam Blaney provided entertainment while Fr Aloysius happily showed everyone how to dance Ugandan style.

A parish spokesperson commented:

“It was a wonderful night tinged with sadness, that both our priests will no longer be with us from the end of the month.”

The move signals a major change for the local Catholic faith community, with Msgr Delargy having served as parish priest for the last 13 years in the town.

Fr Delargy grew up in Cushendun, County Antrim, and was ordained to the priesthood on 7th July, 1973. Since September 2009, Monsignor Delargy has served as Parish Priest of Ballymena and also as Vicar General since August 2017.

He will be moving at the end of July to St Patrick’s, Portrush, where he will be helping in the parish as well as embarking on a new role at the University of Ulster, Coleraine, taking over from Fr Raymond McCullagh. Meanwhile, Fr Lumala will be returning home to his native Uganda.

Love Ballymena understands that that Fr Michael McGinnity has been appointed as the new parish priest in Ballymena and will oversee the pastoral care of the local faith community.

Fr McGinnity will be leaving his role at St Malachy’s, Belfast, in the Down and Connor Diocese where he has served since 2010. Notably, the Belfast priest led the funeral mass for 14-year-old Noah Donohoe in July 2020.

Fr McGinnity will commence his new role in Ballymena on Friday 5 August.


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