Bishop of Connor joins Black Santa Sit-out

Tuesday December 20th 2016

Bishop Alan Abernethy, Dean John Mann and Canon Ronnie Nesbitt on the steps of St Anne’s.

The Bishop of Connor, the Rt Rev Alan Abernethy, joined Black Santa Dean John Mann on the steps of St Anne’s Cathedral this morning (Tuesday) as the charity sit-out reached its mid-way point.

Bishop Alan demonstrates the best footwear for a cold stint at the barrel for Canon Ronnie Nesbitt.

During the morning, the Bishop met up with two old friends.  Dick Milligan is a parishioner in Ballyholme, where the Bishop was rector until his appointment as Bishop of Connor, and Frank Higgins is originally from Co Tyrone but is now living in Donegal. Mr Milligan and Mr Higgins used to work together.

They have met on the Cathedral steps during the Black Santa Sit-out every year for more than 35 years! This year Mr Higgins made the journey to Belfast from Donegal by bus.

The two chatted to the Bishop before departing for their annual Christmas coffee together.

It was a sunny but chilly morning, and Bishop Alan took the opportunity to show Canon Ronnie Nesbitt the correct form of footwear for a frosty few hours at the barrel!

Dean John Mann’s Christmas Sit-out began last Friday and will continue until late on Christmas Eve. During the sit-out entry to the Cathedral is free.

Online donations to Black Santa can be made here.

Bishop Alan greets Mr Frank Higgins, left, and Mr Dick Milligan at St Anne’s Cathedral.

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