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In memory of Esther O'Hagan

Funeral Esther OHagan


Celebrant: Very Reverend Canon Gerald Powell

There is we know a time for mourning and a time for joy. These two emotions will surely find a place together in our hearts today. At the end of Esther’s life it maybe that the need to praise God is uppermost in our minds because it is so clear how rich God’s blessings have been to her:

“My soul gives thanks to the Lord and never forget all his blessings”.

Esther was born on 1st April 1934 in Tandragee. She was one of 6 children of James and Annie O’Hare. After marrying her husband Joe, they set up their first home in Tullylish before moving to live beside the garage on School Road. In 1965 they moved to their present home on the Banbridge Road. Esther was a very quiet, unassuming lady who didn’t like attention and this was obvious in her instructions for her own funeral – no fuss and not too much said!

She was a homemaker in the truest sense of the word – her family was the centre of her world and her doors (front and back) were always open and ready to welcome family, friends and neighbours. Esther was content with life – as long as she had her rosary beads beside her, her Mass radio and the remote control for the telly, life was good!

She had a deep faith and a particular devotion to Saint Martin and our Lady.  When in full health, Esther was a daily Mass-goer.

She had a passion for sport – snooker and tennis especially and could quote games and scores and players like you wouldn’t dream of!

Esther sat in her chair, at the window, and watched the world go by with the contentment that only comes from a life well-lived. She may not have travelled too far in recent years but was always interested in life and only had positive things to say about everybody. 

We are happy today because we know deep down that Esther’s life was complete and she was ready for God. We have received much from her – always generous and thoughtful – a lady. 

Thank you to all who cared for her in her illness, Doctors, nurses and all who cared so diligently for her. The lesson of illness is that of endurance and faith. In all our lives there are the valleys and the hills, the good times and the bad times, the successes and the failures, the joys and the sorrows. We are all given a certain number of years and those who live the longest become deeply aware that this time is not given so much for our enjoyment, but rather to work out our salvation.

We thank her for all her care and understanding and her complete generosity as a loving person, a loving wife to Joe and mother to her children Stephen, Anne, Maura, Gary, Brian and Mairead.  a Holding a vigil for Esther you have shared memories of who she was and what she meant to you. We mourn her passing, we cherish her memory.)

Above all we have remembered the humanity of a good person. Today as we gather in sorrow to remember Esther, a burden of pain, a burden of loss, a burden of grief weighs heavily on you all. We gather as a community in Laurencetown today - our presence here today is our way of reaching out to you her loving family God knows the reality of deep pain – the pain Esther endured in the past number of years of illness. We remember a lovely person, a lady who was a treasure to you all. Letting go of her today is not going to be easy for Esther was a great lover of family, people and life itself.

Every new year brings new challenges and opportunities about waiting in hope and as people of hope we believe in the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Esther’s period of waiting is now over. No one can say she got life easy in recent times - a journey from birth to death and the reason she could see purpose in the pain or sense in the suffering was because Jesus Christ came on this earth to conquer death and save us from our sins.

Today we shed tears for Esther but our tears have a healing effect. Today we no longer cling on but let her go to be with the Lord forever.

Let us celebrate her homecoming, with thanks to God for her life, for the example her faith gives us; for the lessons that we learned from her about living well and dying well.

With the parish community I offer our sympathy to Stephen, Anne, Maura, Gary, Brian and Mairead, daughters in law, sons in law, grandchildren, great grandchildren, sister Nan, brothers Charlie, Seamus and Aidan, nephews, nieces and family circle




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