Act of God in Holy Family church

Damien Hamilton, AVC Construction and Fr. Paddy O'Kane, Adm., pictured cleaning up after the flooding at Holy Family Church, Ballymagroarty on Wednesday morning. 1612JM30
Damien Hamilton, AVC Construction and Fr. Paddy O'Kane, Adm., pictured cleaning up after the flooding at Holy Family Church, Ballymagroarty on Wednesday morning. 1612JM30

Holy Family Church Ballymagroarty suffered extensive flood damage during the adverse weather conditions this week however a bigger problem, according to Father Paddy O’Kane, Adm. are the families left with nothing due to the floods.

Several homes in the adjoining areas were also extensively flood damaged. The church, which had only recently been refurbished, will now have to have new carpets re-layed as water covered three quarters of the chapel. A funeral service, due to be held in Holy Family on Wednesday had to be relocated but a wedding planned there next Tuesday will go ahead as scheduled.

Workmen pictured clearing up the damage done to Holy Family Church, Ballymagroarty, by flooding on Tuesday night. 1612JM31

Workmen pictured clearing up the damage done to Holy Family Church, Ballymagroarty, by flooding on Tuesday night. 1612JM31

“We don’t have a figure for the damage caused in monetary value but we expect it to run to thousands,” said Father O’Kane. “On the grand scale of things it isn’t the worst thing to happen. My heart goes out to the famiies in nearby streets which were affected also. Our loss is small in comparison to a family’s home or Christmas presents being destroyed. That type of damage is soul destroying. In fact we have spent most of today trying to help families in such situations. One family has been in touch saying that the statutory agencies have been ‘very little help.’ their only choice now is to approach the Saint Vincent de Paul for assistance and they were obviously reluctant to do that.”

Asked would the Church’s insurance policy cover the ‘act of God,’ Fr. O’Kane said: “We’ve been assured that it will.While there will be no carpet in the chapel this Christmas I am reminding people that there was no carpet for the first Christmas either.”