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Saturday, October 1, 2016
Family pays tribute to Margaret Hassan at Westminster Cathedral
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 More than 2,000 people attended a Requiem Mass for Margaret Hassan at Westminster Cathedral on Saturday. Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor was the principal celebrant. After the service, the following tribute from her sisters Deirdre, Geraldine and Kathryn and brother Michael, was read by family friend Patrick O'Ryan-Roeder. "To the rest of the world Margaret was an extraordinary charity worker, she had tremendous compassion for her fellow man and had unfailing belief in the capacity of the human heart. Our loss is not for the charity worker; our loss is for the woman who was our sister. Our children were her children. She adored them. They adored her. She was Aunty Margaret. She was brave, she was charitable, she was humble and hard working. Yes she was all of these things, but most of all she was our big sister. She was the one who looked after us when we were children. She held our hands when we walked to school. She organised our Christmas shopping. She made us save our pennies. She wrote the list. She was in charge. She was our big sister. She was funny, she was silly. She had a great sense of humour. She could see the ridiculous. We loved her. We argued with her. She was always there. She was our big sister. If she didn't approve of what we were doing, she would soon let us know. But also she was full of encouragement and love. She was our big sister. Margaret was against war and sanctions. She tried to make a difference. She was a force for good. Children, the sick and poor were her concern. Those without food and clean water. Margaret gave her life for the vulnerable and disadvantaged. Margaret was Irish. Margaret was English. Margaret was Iraqi. Everybody claimed Margaret. But remember, Margaret was our sister and we will miss her. We know Margaret would want us to go forward and lead happy lives. We will miss her more than she will ever know but we no longer have the opportunity to tell her.
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