I was very privileged and happy to travel to my birth place, Tullamore, Co. Offaly, on Friday to be the celebrant of my cousin Anne’s wedding to her new wife Ruth.

Here they are pictured being led by a piper down the impressive stair case of the Bridge House Hotel in Tullamore.

I have celebrated many weddings over the years in the Bridge House but this one was special. It was a family wedding.

I have celebrated hundreds and hundreds of Gay Blessings in the past 33 years.

This was my first formal Same Sex Marriage in the Republic since the law was changed by referendum.

The marriage licence (MRF) is exactly the same and for hetero weddings. A great sign of equality.

There were 150 guests present of every age and to a man and woman they were ecstatically happy for the two ladies.

The bride’s father, a devout Catholic and GAA member from Rural Ireland spoke wonderfully in support of his daughter and was proud of her as a daughter, athlete, and a professional person.

It was a most happy day.

But even on happy days sad memories drift over our minds and hearts.

Anne’s mother Phylis, pictured below, was a sister of my mother Jo.


My mother Jo

The third sister who was part of the trio of very close sisters was my aunt Joan


The three sisters were as close as close could be over the years.

My Mum lived with me and the two sisters would come from Tullamore to Larne several times a year.

Joan was the most lively one and had a great sense of humour. She was easy to get started and I was an expert at winding her up and the result was often explodingly funny.

One time the three sisters were sitting in front of the house on a wooden bench in the sun. I got a squeezy bottle of white household cleaner and squeezed a little bit onto Joan’s hair. She presumed the seagulls had shit in her head and went into a tizzy as we all fell about laughing.

We had a table at the ceremony with pictures of Phylis, Jo and Joan on it and we lit candles in their honour.

I found that part of the day very sad.


A really lovely, happy story and one deserving of of a great celebration. Every good wish to the happy couple. Love is a precious gift to find. It’s even more precious when we find it in another with whom we feel an affinity and closeness to, irrespective of gender. The time has arrived when we must each respect the choices people make about whom they love. I don’t accept the extremes of the gay culture not the promotion of a carefree attitude to sexuality but I am always delighted when people genuinely find their soulmate, friend, partner and seal their love in a covenant of a life long commitment, respect, fidelity, kindness and truth. Hope your cousin and her partner will be truly happy. God bless them.


Yes, wonderful to see such a happy family celebration. And to anyone who wants to get all hot under the collar about LGBTQI+ issues, or same sex marriages and civil partnerships, or same sex adoption, or transgender, or whatever…..GET OVER IT ! This happy family shows that mainstream Irish people are quite content that people express themselves as they want to, and establish relationships that are right for them. Except the Roman Catholic Church and other bigoted organizations that just want to be against anything that makes people happy. As I say, GET OVER IT !


3.57: Don’t loose the nasty condemnatory run of yourself with sweeping attacks on those who have different views. I am happy for this couple, delighted that they are united in a marriage relationship. God bless their union. We must also reflect honestly about the extremes of the choices of sexuality being offered, identity and behaviour which we put before children and young people. Sometimes, adults in their quest for sexual delights, thrills and crazy sensations forget about children and what is age appropriate. What’s presented as the norm is often a perversion and can lead to unwanted illnesses. Same sex marriage – yes but we must be careful about other moral and ethical considerations. Let’s not just have a free for all, do what you want ideology without reflecting on the consequences of our decisions..


I think your call for thoughtfulness and balance is fine. Thank you for wishing Anne and Ruth God’s blessing.
Everyone will agree with you on the absolute necessity of protecting children and vulnerable adults.
We must also have an openness and compassion for those with great sexual and gender issues and be guided by science and medicine – while also preserving top class ethics.


And, pray tell, who are you to be telling people what they can and cannot do ? You are just like those Muslims outside the Birmingham schools telling people that it’s not right to educate our children in respect for people who are different to you and have different values to you. Actually, it is the law that children are educated in these things. And it is the law that we respect the right of people to celebrate diversity, same sex marriage, their LBGTQ identity and life, and so forth. There is no qualification to this, no deciding by anybody else like you what is appropriate and what is not appropriate. Worry about your own life and how you want to live it, and leave others to live their lives and make decisions for themselves within the law, and respect what they decide. Your response is so hedged in with qualification, really saying that you want everybody to think, believe and live like you do.


Pat. Some years ago, when I still lived in the goldfish bowl and judgemental community called home (Co Antrim) I would have been very critical and downright insulting about a gay couple. The fact they were getting married I would have treated with derision. I was ‘blessed’ with catholic logic and thinking-not to mention the guilt.
However, having lived away for many years and been exposed to the vast array of people of every colour, sexual orientation, creed and class and my eyes having been opened and my appreciation of the cultures of so many ‘everyone’s from everywhere ‘ I now rejoice in the happiness of this couple.
I wish them good luck and my joy for them is probably exceeded only by my personal joy at being able to see through and jettison the narrow minded religious upbringing and skewed and unhealthy indoctrination of my formative years.
Ladies, I will now sit back in my big comfy chair, raise a glass of my Bushmills and toast you both. Ad multos annos.
Now for today’s action from good old Wimbers.


Today we should pray for the Canon who was shot during the troubles in Ireland.
After 69 years of faithful service his requiem Holy Mass took place today and the Three bishops of Down and Connor were there
RIP Canon Magee a True and faithful Priest


This blog is being more heavily censored than North Korea. The rocking Rev from Edinburgh is a total con.


Will any priest contributor to this blog be brave enough to stick his head up and wish this couple well but not under the cloak of anonymity.
Go on. Surprise us!


Danny McMullan at 4:05pm

Don’t be ridiculous, I can’t imagine any priest wishing these people well and why should they. Not everyone agree’s with you and all the lovely’s, in fact the very opposite. As I say, GET OVER IT!
Evviva Maria!


4.05: How utterly stupid you sound. Fool. How are we to know if your name is bogus or not? Crappy comment.


I know of 2 RC Priests who have made a Civil Partnership in a different part of the Country where they Minister. Good on them I say.


Evviva Maria
Whilst I agree that not everyone agrees with the gay community ( or the lovely’s- as you call them -should be luvvies btw~back to P6 spelling class for you- the majority of people have obviously crossed the bridge which as yet you haven’t ( poor thing) and it has led them to the place called live and let live.
Now Evviva get you duffle coat on and off you go. Don’t want you to be late for the novena


Patsy you are being extremely unfair you have allowed that cretin Fanny McMullan to publish an abusive post about me and have not allowed me to reply, this sad luvie has been very nasty and you should in fairness allow me to retaliate.
Evviva Maria!


Pat, I’m sure you don’t approve of a “have what you want” philosophy without a corresponding sense of moral responsibility. At the beginning of Pride Week while walkingbthriugh town with friends, we were swarmed by semi naked men of all sizes, big bellies, some balding, over muscled guys strutting their wares, almost begging for raw, public sex with anyone who’d agree, many ofvthem drunk stupid. Some had little but a banana skin over their privates: all having fun, screaming like little queens…chasing after unsuspecting tourists…For God’s sake, if you or I attempted to urinate in public or walk down anywhere almost naked, behaving crazily, we’d be prosecuted for breach of the peace and public decency. Why should ‘Pride’ people expect to break the law so blatantly and not be prosecuted? Oh, I know, they are victims of a cruel society, part of the great place called “live and let live” where if you don’t conform to their provocatively sexual deviances, you’re ridiculed, mocked and accused of hatred of a “particular group” : one day we’ll have Sodom and Gomorrah in all its debasement, ugliness and extremes. It will not then be a nice country. God protect our children.


I agree with you about the lewdness. But have you seen what young heteros get up to in places like Ibiza and Benidorm?


Anon at 10.12
You think the gays were bad. You should be in Magherafelt at closing time on a Friday or Saturday night to you see uncouthness and degradation of the heterosexuals in full swing. God protect South Derry


No sign yet of any brave priests being conscience led and sticking their neck out. Methinks Magna is right. They’ve compromised their integrity in an oath to their bishop. Hypocrites.


Many might gnash their teeth hi. But there’s sod all they can do against the law of the land except bitch. How would Jesus behave at this wedding. If love changes everything why can’t The Church give all the respect due to them while challenging perceived issues with an open mind but


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