What a busy and joyful few days it has been around the UK and the Commonwealth as people came together to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee – and Connor Diocese was no exception!
There were street parties, special services, lunches, barbecues, and more, as parishioners paid tribute to Her Majesty for her 70 years as monarch, and celebrated a lifetime of faith. (See our Gallery below).
St Anne’s Cathedral, Belfast, hosted a special service on Sunday June 5, attended by hundreds of people drawn from public life and the voluntary services. Report and Photo Gallery.
Platinum Jubilee celebrations at St John the Baptist, Parish of Dunluce included the planting of a beech tree by the rector the Rev Canon George Graham, and a Jubilee tea, with a special cake which was cut by former Lord Lieutenant for County Antrim, Mrs Joan Christie. There were some fantastic drawings by local children on display too!
After welcoming their new priest-in-charge, the Rev Jacob Mercer, just last Tuesday, the Parish of St Brigid, Mallusk, held a special lunch on June 5, with a display of Royal memorabilia by Francis Alcorn.
The celebrations in All Saints’, Eglantine, began on Friday evening, June 3, with a special Evensong. The preacher was the Rev Canon Sam McVeigh. On Saturday there were blue skies over Eglantine for the Jubilee BBQ, with entertainment from Norman Houston and children from the parish. A treasure hunt was also set up for the children around the church grounds. Finally on Sunday, Bishop George Davison was in the parish for Confirmation.
Thanks to funding from the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland and Belfast City Council, through the Queen’s Jubilee Fund, Stranmillis Parish hosted a Jubilee Street Party with children’s activities in conjunction with 81st Belfast Scout Troop. Alongside sharing food there was live music, knitting and baking competitions, a colouring competition, various games and a Platinum Jubilee Quiz.
Hilden Community Association partnered with Lambeg Parish and the Hilden Centre in celebrating the Jubilee in the Hilden Centre.
St John’s, Malone, shared some special Jubilee buns at their service on June 5, while St Mark’s, Ballymacash, hosted a Platinum Jubilee Tea after its Pentecost Family service. There was tea and fellowship in the hall, beautifully decorated by the Tuesday crafters, with music from the new music group and the choir.
Carnmoney Parish enjoyed fabulous weather for its Platinum Jubilee Party on Friday June 3. Many people came in fancy dress and there was entertainment for the children in the form of games and a performance from Bonzo the clown. More than 160 people of all ages enjoyed a meal in the hall before entertainment and dancing led by Joe Lagen. Firefighters from the NI Fire Brigade Glengormley Station also visited, enthralling the kids with their fire engine. Eileen Roulston and Rev Carol Harvey provided beautiful Jubilee cakes.
In St Nicholas’, Carrickfergus, there was a great turn-out for a very colourful Jubilee Party, and in St Peter’s, Belfast, Albert, Ashlee and their three sons organised and hosted a Jubilee Tea Party in the halls after morning service, and a great time was had by all!
The Queen herself, in cardboard cut-out form, visited the Parish of Larne, Inver Glynn and Raloo for services on Sunday, with the celebrations bringing smiles to everyone’s faces!
The church hall in Magheragall was packed for a Jubilee lunch on Sunday with all ages enjoying the opportunity to come together to celebrate this occasion.
There was cake and sweet treats as the parishioners of St Patrick’s, Jordanstown, celebrated – with another guest appearance by Her Majesty!
In St Matthew’s, Broomhedge, parishioners enjoyed a special Jubilee Service and parish barbecue, with a really beautiful Jubilee cake shared by all.
A Platinum Jubilee Beacon in Ballycastle was lit in the grounds of Holy Trinity Church on Thursday June 2 – one of five beacons lit in the Causeway Coast and Glens Council Area.
The Mothers’ Union in St Patrick’s and St Andrew’s, Coleraine, held a Jubilee tea party on Monday May 30. The oldest member, Jean Nesbitt, who was born on the same day as Queen Elizabeth II, kindly cut the cake, and members had a great time reminiscing with a few old tunes.
The United Parish of Christ Church and St John, Ballyclare, was blessed with glorious sunshine for its Praise and Picnic in the Park to mark the Jubilee on June 5, with more than 100 people coming along.
St Michael’s, St Stephen & St Luke’s and Messy Church joined together on June 5 to cheer, sing congratulations to the Queen and to enjoy a fabulous bbq lunch with lots of desserts, and Lisburn Cathedral held a Jubilee Service on Sunday morning, followed by a Platinum Jubilee Party.
Parishioners in Christ Church, Derriaghy, and St Andrew’s, Colin, enjoyed lots of sweet treats, with a great spread of Jubilee buns, scones, and biscuits.
As part of its Jubilee service, St Comgall’s, Rathcoole, played a recording of parishioner James Mateer Lannie BEM, who shared his memories of being on parade duty at the time of the Queen’s Coronation Tour of Northern Ireland. Some members of the Select Vestry were thanked for their long standing service.
Packs containing age appropriate commemorative books, lapel pins, prayer and Bible study resource material and a special 70 Acts of Service booklet were given out at the service and delivered afterwards to over 200 households connected with St Comgall’s.
After the service, a new Platinum Jubilee memorial bench was dedicated in the church grounds, thanks to a Jubilee grant from Antrim & Newtownabbey Borough Council by two of the oldest parishioners – both in their 90s and assisted by some of the youngest children in the parish. A plaque beside the two fruit trees planted as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative was unveiled and NI100 roses were planted.
There was a small display in the church (including a knitted queen and corgis), and several teddies in costume and parishioners enjoyed homemade shortbread made in the form of crowns, traditional scones, jam and cream; fresh strawberries, various cakes, biscuits and Platinum Pudding lemon and amaretti trifles.
St Hilda’s, Kilmakee, hosted a Queen’s Jubilee fun day with grant aid from Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council. The Mayor, Alderman Stephen Martin, attended and dedicated a Jubilee tree. Also present was MLA Emma Little-Pengelly and local councillors.
St Katharine’s, Belfast, celebrated the Platinum Jubilee on Sunday June 5 with a Jubilee Communion and Re-dedication Service followed by a picnic.
To mark the jubilee, Denise McClure spent from Easter until the event knitting items related to the Queen (check out her amazing work in our photo gallery). Parishioners planted a tree and all had their picture taken with the Queen – HM in cardboard format! As a further memory of the day, each family at St Katharine’s received a Jubilee Shopping Bag, a shopping trolley key ring and the book Our Faithful Queen, which tells the story of her deep faith.
In Derryvolgie, St Columba’s Parish Church hosted their jubilee celebration on May 29, and the sun shone for the big day. Among the visitors was the Mayor of Lisburn and Castlereagh, Councillor Stephen Martin.
These are just some of the Jubilee celebrations in our parishes and the gallery below gives a flavour of the joy of the occasion, particularly poignant as we move out of the global pandemic. You will find lots more images on the different parish Facebook pages.