Fr O’Hagan is Dundalk’s new parish priest

THE newly appointed administrator of the parish of St Patrick’s says reaching out and bringing together the entire community will be a key aim of his tenure.

THE newly appointed administrator of the parish of St Patrick’s says reaching out and bringing together the entire community will be a key aim of his tenure.

Fr Mark O’Hagan was recently appointed administator, having been acting administrator for the previous seven months.

“I was made acting administrator when Fr Andy McNally fell ill in December, and was appointed as administrator by Cardinal Brady, a position I’m delighted to take,” Fr O’Hagan told the paper.

“It’s a great position and I’m looking forward to doing my duties in the parish and interacting with the entire community.”

Fr O’Hagan was ordained in 2004, following six years studying to be a priest at Maynooth. He was posted to Blackrock, Haggardstown initially, then was made curate in St Patricks. He is now responsibile for the day to day running of the parish.

“I’ve also been very active in the community and have always enjoyed working with young people. I’ve worked closely with secondary schools, and taken trips to India and worked with caring for people in Lourdes, and I hope this role to carry on as before.”

Fr O’Hagan came to the vocation in his late 20s, having spent some years working as a supervisor in Europa Hotel in Belfast, aswell as doing accounts for local firms around Coalisland, and says that he is hopeful his accounting skills will be that helpful in this role.

“There has been fall off in attendance at masses and as pastor it is part of my role to spread the word of God and to encourage people to attend.

Fr O’Hagan says that he is delighted with the role and that he will use his position to bring people together.

“I want to help build the community, and look forward to reaching out to all people in the community, from all backgrounds and ages.”