Northern Ireland news

Co Tyrone-born Presbyterian moderator attends Irish National Day of Commemoration

Reverend Charles McMullen attended the National Day of Commemoration in Dublin yesterday
Gareth McKeown

THE Co Tyrone-born moderator of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland was among the participants in the National Day of Commemoration in Dublin yesterday.

Dr Charles McMullen from Omagh took part in the worship at Collins Barracks, joining President Michael D. Higgins and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at the service. Similar events were also held in Cork and Limerick.

The date for Republic' s annual National Day of Commemoration is the Sunday nearest to July 11 - the anniversary of the date in 1921 when a truce was signed ending the Irish War of Independence. The services honour all Irish men and women who died in past wars or on duty with the United Nations.

Dr McMullen said he felt "privileged" to be involved.

"Like my predecessors I felt very privileged to be representing Presbyterians in this significant act of remembrance in the life of Ireland," he said.

"Collective memory is so important as it expresses community, solidarity, heartfelt gratitude and the deep prayer that history will never repeat itself. It tells a greater story than the sum total of its parts."

Dr McMullan's appearance came a week after more than 230 senior Presbyterians signed a statement criticising the denomination's General Assembly for decisions which have led to a "profound sense of hurt, dismay and anger".

The statement, entitled A Cry from the Heart, does not refer directly to specific issues, but comes as tensions are high within the Church over its attitude to same-sex relationships.

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