Dunleer to mark bicentenary of hero Fr Dowd
DUNLEER will mark the bicentenary of one of its greatest sons with a special day of celebration on Sunday next, November 24.
The Gathering event for Fr Patrick Dowd, who helped save thousands of Irish Famine victims in Canada, begins with 11.30am Mass in St Brigid’s Church (where he was baptised 200 years ago) followed by a Dunleer Historical Society Exhibition in St Brigid’s Hall from 12.30pm to 6pm.
It includes Fr Dowd’s portrait, photographs, and items associated with his time in Canada, letters home plus newspaper articles and writings on Fr Dowd’s life, works and achievements.
The Dowd family tree will be on display, traced back to the Hermon Kings 1383BC, as well as booklets on his life.
A series of short talks begin at 2pm, including at 2.10pm, Fr Dowd: Famine Hero in Montreal, by Dr Jason King (a native of Montreal) and then Fr Dowd and Thomas D’Arcy McGee, by Anthony Russell (Anglia Ruskin University).
3pm: Fr Dowd’s Life in Ireland and Family, by Gabriel Mathews (Fr Dowd’s Great Grand Nephew).
In Canada, to mark the anniversary, Msgr. Francis Coyle Pastor of St Patrick’s Basilica, Montreal will celebrate the 11a.m. Mass on November 24 in honour of Fr Dowd.