THE main hall of the Parish Centre was filled to capacity on Friday with parishioners paying tribute to Father Tony Corr.
After 12 years in Seapatrick Fr Corr has taken up an appointment as curate in Newry.
There was a standing ovation when he and members of his family joined the parishioners in the hall.
Musicians, singers, dancers, comedians and a story teller from the parish made the entertainment memorable.
The variety of the acts and the age range of those involved – preteens to pensioners - was a tribute to the active ministry of Father Tony who worked with Liturgy Groups, Children’s Liturgy and Choirs – to name but a few.
The performers were outstanding; their commitment and the time they gave to prepare for the occasion indicative of their high regard for Father Corr. The concert was organised by Barney Green and compered by Gene Fitzpatrick who returned from holiday so that he could be present.
The Parish choirs paid their own, humorous tribute to Father Corr in song – the lyrics especially composed for the occasion!
Before the presentations the Parish Hall Committee provided a delicious supper. Canon Stevenson spoke eloquently about Father Corr’s contribution to the parish and his support to him personally. He referred to his shock on hearing that Father Corr was going to be moved but said he was sure that he would bring his gifts and his ministry to the people of Newry as effectively as he had to the people of Banbridge.
Canon Stevenson welcomed Father Stephen Crossan to the parish and reminded everyone that he had spent some months in Banbridge as Deacon, supporting himself and Father Corr in preparing for the opening of St Therese’s Church.
After the presentation of gifts, Father Corr spoke movingly of his time in Banbridge and his confidence in adjusting to the demands of his new parish.
He said that change was often challenging but that every priest knew that he may be moved according to the needs of the Diocese.
He thanked everyone for their generosity to him and for the flowers which his sister had accepted on behalf of his mother.
The evening ended with a disco, music provided by DJ Barney Green.