VIDEO Parishioners praise 'phenomenal impact' of Augustinians

Parishioners have paid tribute to the positive impact of the Augustinians as the order prepares to leave St Joseph’s, Broomhouse, after 25 years.

Pauline Davies, chair of the pastoral council, said: “The impact they have made on our community has been phenomenal. It’s been a privilege, so we’re very sad to see them going.

“Fr Ian Wilson and Fr Sean Quinlan (main picture), the two remaining friars, have been wonderful.”

Parishioner Ewan Walker said: “The Augustinians have undoubtedly changed this parish and the community of Broomhouse for the better.

“When they first arrived the parish was in decline, the church and parish house becoming the regular target for vandalism. Within a year, the Augustinians succeeded in opening up St Joseph's to the community, simply by making community the central focus.

“We're all gutted to see the Augustinians leave, but our mission now is to look forward to the future in hope as we continue their work.”

New chapter

The parish celebrates not only the anniversary of the arrival of the Augustinians in 1995 but also the 70th year of its foundation in 1950. A total of 18 friars have served the people in Broomhouse over that time.

Archbishop Leo Cushley said: “The news came as a bit of a shock to the parish and we are sad to see the Augustinians leave.

“The anniversary celebrations will be tinged with sadness. However, we thank the Augustinians for their 25 years of service in Broomhouse, and we look forward in hope to a new chapter in the history of St Joseph's.”

Fr Ian Wilson has been appointed to Clare Priory in England as Parish Priest.

He said: “We will leave with happy memories. It’s  a good wee parish and the diocese has always been opening and welcoming of us so we go with happy memories and consoled that the parish is not closing and continues into a new era.”

Fr Sean Quinlan has been appointed to St Mary’s Harborne, Birmingham.

He said: "It’s not so much the place that I loved, it’s the people that I loved – they are fantastic and have changed my life. I believe the parish has a wonderful future.”

They will take up their new appointments after Easter. Fr Paul Graham has already began a new ministry as Assistant General in Rome.

Archbishop Cushley has announced that Fr Emmanuel Chorbecurrently assistant priest at St Mary's, Bathgate, will become the temporary administrator of St Joseph's.

Please note: A Mass of Thanksgiving to be held in the church on Thursday 19 March, the Feast of St Joseph, has been postponed as a precautionary coronavirus measure.