Glasgow flourishes for St Mungo
By Amanda Connelly
The people of Glasgow came together for a week of culture, fun and history as the city hosted its annual St Mungo Festival in honour of the city’s patron saint.
The ninth festival of its kind is organised by the Medieval Glasgow Trust and aims to celebrate the life of the city’s patron St Mungo as well as highlighting some of Glasgow’s rich history. Over the course of last week, people young and old joined in some of the various events taking place across the city.
In addition to a number of exhibitions, tours and walks that occurred over the course of the week, the city’s youth were given a particularly special role in telling the story of St Mungo, also known as St Kentigern.
‘Mungo’s Bairns’ saw children from 12 different primary schools across Glasgow join together, with the help of students from Glasgow University, for a song and drama festival, at which they performed songs and brought to life the story of St Mungo for 2017.
The role of St Mungo was played by P7 pupil Liam Kearney from St Monica’s Primary, and his mother Enoch by P6 pupil Aoife Brand from St Denis’ Primary. Older school pupils also had the chance to discover the story of Glasgow’s patron saint, with St Mungo’s Academy and Whitehill Secondary school gathering at the chapel and tomb of St Mungo in Glasgow Cathedral.
Students recited the story of St Mungo and met with Dr Laurence Whitley at the West Door of the Cathedral before processing to the tomb, where Cain Kelly from St Mungo’s Academy and Emily Cockburn of Whitehill Secondary laid wreaths for the dedication of Glasgow’s youth to St Mungo.
The Catholic roots of the saint were not forgotten amidst the festivities, with a special Mass celebrated in St Mungo’s Church, Townhead, to mark the feast day of Glasgow’s founder.
The Mass was celebrated by Archbishop Philip Tartaglia of Glasgow and presided over by Archbishop Emeritus Mario Conti of Glasgow, and concelebrated alongside parish priest Fr Francis Keevins, Fr David Wallace, who is Chair of Glasgow Churches Together, and a number of canons and Passionists.
Present at the Mass were members of the Knights of St Columba, and the readings were done by supreme knight Charlie McCluskey and pupil Abigail Clark from St Mungo’s Academy, while the St Mungo Singers, led by Mgr Gerry Fitzpatrick, led the musical liturgy with their beautiful singing.
The week-long celebrations proved to be another resounding success at showcasing both the City of Glasgow’s traditions and culture, and the life, work and religious origins of St Mungo and the city he founded.