Bishop Paul McAleenan of Westminster Diocese was in attendance at a 'Celebration of Irish music, poetry and dancing' on January 31st, the eve of St Brigid, at St James' church Piccadilly, hosted by the Irish Chaplaincy.
Forty-three members of the London Celtic Youth Orchestra took to the stage first and had the audience of several hundred clapping their hands and tapping their feet. They were followed by a host of other talented musicians and poets in a first half which was brought to a close by the ever-popular Irish Pensioners' Choir, who had the audience enthusiastically singing along to 'Mountains of Mourne', whether from memory or from their phones!
Luckpenny Ceílí band opened the second half with a set of traditional Irish airs, and there was more dancing and more singing, which included a moving tribute to Mary Black from Rev Lucy Winkett, Rector of St James, and former professional soprano. Irish Performers celebrate St Brigid's Day at St James Piccadilly, CEO of the Irish Chaplaincy, finished off a varied, uplifting and memorable evening with one of his own songs, 'Fare Ye Well'. He thanked the audience, in which was also present the Irish Ambassador, Adrian O'Neill, and Councillor Richard Cotton, ex-mayor of Camden, where the Chaplaincy is based.
The Irish Chaplaincy supports Irish people in Britain, especially those most in need, including prisoners, Travellers and Seniors. In its outreach to isolated elderly Irish in London, the Irish Chaplaincy Seniors' Project works especially closely with Caritas Westminster.
For more information, go to: www.irishchaplaincy.org.uk
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