As a sign of our thanks to Louise for looking after Fr. Gildea for the last few years of his life, the Parish Council suggested and agreed that we as a parish would like to express our gratitude to Louise with a gift of some sort. Louise told us that she would like a bunker for her back garden, in other words, storage for her golf clubs and other bits!
Obviously we agreed and the gift has been bought and delivered and is already hiding her clubs away from sight and temptation. Louise has written a note of thanks and it can be read below.
Thank you all for your very thoughtful, kind and wonderful gift of "my bunker".
Looking after Fr. Gildea (Gilly to me!) was a privilege. We were best friends for over 50 years and I know he would have looked after me should I have been in a similar situation.
Life is certainly different now and to be honest, it is lovely to be back in my own home after nearly 5 years away from it. It is a home and garden I absolutely love. Slowly I am getting both back into shape. The bunker certainly is useful holding all my golf gear, garden chairs and big tools!
I have loved living in St. Peter and Michael's though I must admit it was hard at times coming back after my day at home. I have made many friends over the years and have always felt welcome and I thank you for that as I could easily have become lonely and isolated. We shared many a laugh and had such good times together ... especially with a bottle of vino!
Your parish is truly blest with people that Fr. G loved working with and alongside. He totally respected and appreciated all you did for him and for each other to make SS Peter and Michael such a wonderful welcoming, caring and well-run parish. From fabulous meaningful liturgy, generous support to those in need, amazing involvement of both young and old, music at the heart, to many fun social functions ... all that would make other parishes extremely jealous!
The new priest is a lucky man to step into Fr. G's shoes! I hope and pray that he too will work alongside you and not in isolation from you. You deserve that respect.
With many THANKS again and love to you all.