7 August 2020 No Comments by The Northern Standard


Michael Fisher

‘Lord, make me an instrument of your peace’: the prayer of St Francis based on the Gospel beatitudes filled the vast space of St Eugene’s Cathedral in Derry yesterday as the city by the Foyle said farewell to its visionary. More than anyone else John Hume, former SDLP leader and MEP, had helped to transform the fortunes of the city over the past fifty years and bring peace to the North.

The Nobel Peace Prize winner along with David Trimble in 1998 following the Good Friday Agreement passed away peacefully at a nursing home in Derry on Monday aged 83 after what his family said was a short illness. In recent years he had suffered from dementia and retired from active politics in 2004. President Higgins and the Taoiseach Micheál Martin were among the limited number of 120 people allowed inside to pay their respects.

The North’s First Minister Arlene Foster and deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill were also among the congregation, physically spaced among the pews and wearing masks because of Covid-19 guidelines. Because many were unable to be present in person (and the family had requested people not to travel), the funeral Mass was carried live on RTÉ and Mr Hume’s son Aidan….

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