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Pope Francis urges people of Derry to shine for peace


Pope Francis has expressed his hope that the people of Derry radiate the Gospel message for the sake of present and future generations.

Last weekend His Holiness offered special prayers for the city and diocese on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of St Eugene's Cathedral.

In a letter delivered by the Papal Nuncio to Irelan, Archbishop Luis Mariano Montemayor to Bishop of Derry, Dr Donal McKeown, the Holy Father said he prayed in thanksgiving for the many graces received by the people of the diocese over the last 150 years.

He also expressed his hope that people here would be "drawn ever more deeply into a loving relationship with Jesus Christ and experience anew the original freshness of the Gospel".

Citing the beatitudes, he singled out his hope for peacemakers to continue to work now and in the future for the sake of the community, suggesting peace cannot be taken for granted.

This message follows the 25th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement which brought an end to armed conflict in the North.

Attending the Diocese of Derry Celebration Mass to commemorate St Eugene's 150 year history, Archbishop Montemayor said: "His Holiness Pope Francis was pleased to learn of the celebrations marking the 150th Anniversary of the opening of St Eugene's Cathedral in Derry, and he sends cordial good wishes to you, the clergy, religious and lay faithful of the Diocese. Joining you in giving thanks to almighty God for the many graces received over the past century and a half, his Holiness prays that the people of Derry, centred upon the mother Church of Saint Eugene, will be drawn ever more deeply into a loving relationship with Jesus Christ and experience anew the original freshness of the Gospel (CF. Evangelii Gaudium, 11). In this way, it is likewise his hope that the members of the diocesan family will be ever radiant with the beatitudes, especially as peacemakers for the sake of the present and future life of the local community. To all taking part in the occasion, the Holy Father willingly imparts his blessing as a pledge of peace and joy in the risen Lord." 

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St Eugene’s Cathedral
Francis Street, Derry
BT48 9AP

Tel: 028 7126 2302

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