Two masses at St Mary’s church in Douglas have marked 25 years since the ordination of Canon Philip Gillespie, the leader of the Roman Catholic church in the Isle of Man.
Monday’s service was attended by clergy from around the island and the UK, MHKs, president of Tynwald Clare Christian, the mayor and mayoress of Douglas and Bishop of Sodor and Mann Robert Paterson.
Lieutenant Governor Adam Wood offered a reading to the 150-strong congregation on Monday, while over 250 worshippers attended Tuesday’s service.
Born in Liverpool, Canon Gillespie studied at the English College in Rome and was ordained as a priest in 1989 for the Archdiocese of Liverpool.
He served as curate in Southport and Warrington before becoming parish priest at Christ the King in Childwall Liverpool, then spent eight years as a member of staff at the Catholic seminary in Durham before moving to the Isle of Man.
In 2011 he became head of the Roman Catholic church in the island following the retirement of Canon Brendan Alger.