Clare Barker writes on behalf of her father Arthur McGuigan of Derrybeg Drive. Arthur recalls the Missions of old, where the first week was for women alone, the second for men. Arthur and his mates ‘bunked’ the service and kept warm by sitting in the empty buses on The Mall! A religious mate would be waylaid on his way home so that all could report on what the Missioner was on about that evening!
All went well until his father Raymes caught them. To the last man, they were frog-marched to the Church and supervised for the duration of the service.
I must admit I rather enjoyed the Missions. All that ‘fire and brimstone’ taught me a love of horror movies!
Then there was the Confraternity. Again, one night for men, one for women. You sat under a Shield naming your area. A clever device that, for ‘absent’ colleagues could quickly be identified and followed up! Seriously though, the Cathedral was always packed. I miss that level of community faith.