September 3rd 2017 marked the end of an era, as the Parishioners of Our Lady of Lourdes, Newent, and St Michael’s Blaisdon, bid farewell to Fr Aidan Murray, and the Salesians ended a chapter in their history, as they formally handed over care of the Parish, to the Diocese of Clifton.
The Celebration of the Eucharist was led by Fr Gerry Briody SDB, the Salesian Provincial, with Mgr Liam VG representing the bishop.
Father Aidan Murray:A Tribute From the Rt. Rev. Bishop Declan Lang
” This weekend is a special time in the life of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish, Newent, since it marks the retirement of Fr Aidan Murray and the departure of the Salesian Fathers from our Diocese.
I am very grateful for Fr Aidan’s presence in Newent, Blaisdon and the Diocese. He has been a Good Shepard who has shown tremendous dedication in his priestly ministry. In the words of Pope Francis, he has ‘the smell of the sheep’. He is a holy man in the best sense of the word and an example of what it is to be a good parish priest. He is truly loved.
I would also like to acknowledge the work of the Salesians in our Diocese over many years with the special school at Blaisdon, the Parish of Newent and other parishes in the Gloucester Deanery. I am grateful for the contribution the Salesians have made to the mission of the Church in the Diocese of Clifton. I am sorry they are unable to remain in the Parish of Our Lady of Lourdes. I know they will not be forgotten and they will always be part of the story of the Church in this part of the country
As we look to the future, we do so as a People of Hope believing in the presence of Christ, celebrating that presence and living our faith in daily life, knowing that in a time of change, we are called to be faithful to the Gospel.”
Fr Aidan’s Farewell To Newent And Blaisdon