BY SCO Admin | July 4 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print


Colourful Mass celebrates multiculturalism and charitable efforts

The colourful and diverse nature of the Scottish Church was celebrated in Maryhill recently as parishioners of the Immaculate Conception Parish gathered for a multi-cultural Mass that celebrated months of charitable fundraising efforts.

The diversity of this year’s Commonwealth Games host city was fully on show as mid-day Mass was celebrated by parish priest Fr James Lawlor before a cheque was presented to SCIAF for £5000.

The festival of faith and fundraising kicked of with a musical note, as one young parishioner played the bagpipes to soundtrack the gathering congregation. People from across the world made their way into the packed church clad in the national dress of their countries of origin (above).

African, Polish and Hungarian outfits mixed with an abundance of tartan inside the church, which was adorned with flags of 24 nations, hanging alongside the parish’s banner proclaiming it a place were ‘All are welcomed, none are judged.’ The Offertory procession was led by Nigerian parishioners in national dress while a Filipino choir sang in their own language, sparking spontaneous applause.

After communion, Sr Magdalene from Botswana, also in national dress, sang a hymn in her first language, astounding the congregation with the quality of her voice. The atmosphere in the church was one of joyful celebration of the cultural diversity of the energetic parish and of its generosity.

The £5000 was raised for SCIAF over the preceding months via the charity’s Wee Box campaign, while the Justice and Peace Group held a Poverty Breakfast each Friday with donations contributing to the fundraising efforts.

Following the Mass parishioners enjoyed a buffet lunch featuring food from Africa and Eastern Europe and were entertained by an Irish dancer—Scottish with Donegal and Nigerian heritage.

Christina Leitch, a member of the parish council, said the day had an atmosphere of excitement and celebration.

Parishioners from the parish echoed Mrs Leitch’s views. “It was a great day enjoyed by everyone young and old,” said one. “Food was great. Flags were brilliant. The gathering was truly international and inclusive.”

The event was organised in recognition of the changing population of the parish, reflected in many parishes across Scotland. Immaculate Conception, originally St Mary’s, dates back to 1851 when, even then, immigrants, mainly from Donegal, formed a sizeable part of the congregation.


– Read the full version of this story in July 4 edition of the SCO.

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