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A Parish In The North Has Been Left Half A Million Quid In A Will

By Sarah

February 9, 2017 at 10:42am

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The Catholic parish of Glenavy and Killead in Co Antrim has been left more than half a million pounds in a will.

The generous sum of money was donated by Ballinderry man Peter McAreavey, and is thought to be one of the largest donations ever received within the Diocese of Down and Connor.

Mr McAreavey, a farmer who "lived a modest lifestyle", was a life-long member of the parish of Glenavy and Killead and died in July 2015, as reported in The Irish News.

The  £554,000 donated has been used to pay off a building loan for work at St.Joseph's Church in Glenavy.

In addition to the donation to his local parish, Mr McAreavey left £70,000 to the neighbouring St Clare's Community Centre in Glenavy.

An undisclosed sum was also received by St Joseph's, Glenavy GAC, where Mr Areavey was a former player and member.

At Masses across the parish last weekend, a statement by Fr Colm McBride outlined the "extraordinary gift".

"On the second week of January this year the parish received a cheque for the sum of £554,000. It is an extraordinary and wonderful gift to our parish. This gift of over half a million pounds means that almost a third of our debt has been wiped out.

"So as we begin a new financial year I'm happy to say that our debt now stands not at £1.68 million, but is now reduced to £1,135,000. The only way we can express our gratitude to Peter is to pray for his soul."

A parishioner who knew Mr McAreavey well described him as "quiet, generous man".

"He was just a genuinely generous man and was very kind to his family and friends and left the huge sum of money to the parish," he said.

"He doted on his nieces and nephews and anyone who took time out of their day to visit him he remembered them in his will."

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