Our Parish Priest
BY “One of Us”
Father Thomas Rhatigan, a native of Co. Laois, Ireland, was educated at St. Kieran’s College, Kilkenny, where he was ordained on 8th June 1947. He came to Loanhead as our parish priest from St. Mary’s Cathedral, Edinburgh in 1968 on the death of Father Carden.
At a time of change with its resulting problems, Fr. Rhatigan had no hesitation in implementing the decrees of Vatican ll and leading his parishioners into a new era.
His work has been one of building, materially as well as spiritually.
In the Church, the new sanctuary, the stations of the cross and the stained glass windows are some of the changes carried out in a simple but expressive manner under his guidance.
His encouragement and persuasive prompting helped to inspire those parishioners, who have worked so generously in their leisure time for the past two years, to give us our new St. Margaret’s Hall.
We now enjoy a very close participation in our Sunday Mass and are rightly proud, we believe, of our
congregational hymn singing.
Bridges of communication have been built with other churches in the community. This new relationship is never more manifest than at our joint service in Holy Week, which is always a spiritually exhilarating experience.
The obvious increase in the numbers receiving Holy Communion must be related to Father’s frequently expressed desire for a greater devotion to the Blessed Sacrament. More vocations to the priesthood and the religious life is a wish very dear to his heart. We devote the first Friday of each month to this intention.
As we begin the second century at St. Margaret’s we know that Fr. Rhatigan is doing what he can to lead us in the way of Christ. We have no doubts that we have a Church ideally suited to God’s worship and a hall that can only improve our community life.
It will be our joy and privilege to pray and work for the great hopes that he entertains for the future of St. Margaret’s and all its people.