Fr. John Gerard (Sean) Cargan
The family of the late Fr. John Cargan would like to express their sincere thanks to all those who sympathised with them on their recent sad bereavement. It was a source of great comfort to the family to witness the huge love and regard held for Sean by the various congregations that he served during his ministry, evidenced by the thousands who attended his wake and funeral, called at the family home, or sent cards, letters and flowers. We knew Sean was popular but we were unprepared for, and uplifted by, the huge outpouring of grief from so many people of all ages and from other faiths who shared with us their stories of how he had touched their lives, including many who travelled from his previous parishes, Omagh, Faughanvale, Steelstown and Maghera.
A special word of thanks to Dr. Grainne McGurk and Ursula McMullan for their medical care over the years and to the nursing staff at Ward C4 Antrim Area Hospital who cared for Sean during his short illness. He was very appreciative of the great care and attention he received from all of them, despite the huge and constant pressures they all face on a daily basis.
To his close friends, Sean’s fellow priests from the Derry Diocese, Fr. Eamon McDevitt, Fr. John R. Walsh, Fr. Frank Bradley and Fr. Michael McCaughey - your faithful attendances at the hospital during his illness, even during the very busy Easter ceremony preparations, were greatly appreciated.
To Bishop Donal McKeown, who celebrated the funeral Mass, Fr. Frank Bradley for his moving homily, Brenda Bannon for the reading and the huge number of clergy from the Derry Diocese who participated in the funeral mass– thank you for giving Sean a fitting send-off. He would have been humbled and embarrassed by the very public affirmation of the respect in which he was held by his peers.
Thanks to the sacristans of Sean’s three parish churches, St. Annes, Drumagarner and Craigavole for your support to him over the years, to Sean’s housekeeper Briege Scullion and secretary Kim Convery, to Paul Quigg, Leo Quigg, Danny McMullan, Laura Kearney, James and Kathleen McAllister, all of whom provided Sean with lots of practical assistance over the years.
To the staff and pupils of the local schools where Sean was chaplain – thank you for the guard of honour you provided at the church. We know how much he enjoyed his work with you over the years. Thanks also to the choir for the beautiful music and singing at the funeral mass, to the piper Alisha O’Kane, to those who prepared the grave and churches, the Altar Society for their flowers, Pearse’s GAA Club, Kilrea for the use of their premises for the refreshments after the service, Nuala and Padraig Doherty for the catering and also the many ladies of the parish who provided refreshments during the wake.
Michael Og and Gregory from McKiernan & Sons, Funeral Directors carried out the funeral arrangements in a most dignified and hugely professional manner and we cannot thank them enough for their invaluable assistance and attention over the period of the wake and funeral.
And Finally (as he would often end his sermons), on behalf of his family, his close friends and his two wee dogs, Bruce and Snowy —
Thank you most of all to the parishioners of Kilrea and Desertoghill Parish for welcoming Sean into your hearts and homes and for the kindness and generosity shown to him during his time as your priest. He so loved his time in Kilrea and it is fitting that his last resting place is beside the walls of St.Mary’s, Drumagarner, where he was installed as your Parish Priest in 2014.
We will all miss him terribly. May his gentle soul Rest In Peace.
The Month’s Mind Mass for Sean will be held at St. Anne’s Oratory, Kilrea at 7.00 pm on Friday 20th May 2022. (Mass can be viewed on the Parish webcam https://www.churchservices.tv/kilrea)
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