Members of the Parishes of Craigs, Dunaghy & Killagan stepped out on three non-strenuous walks of between two and three miles in areas close to the parishes during June.
The rector, the Rev Adrian Halligan, said: “Our parishes are based in the villages of Cullybackey, Clough and Cloughmills and the natural beauty around them is wonderful.
“There were several reasons for the walks, including, fun and fellowship across our three parishes, to enjoy God’s amazing creation which is all around us and because of a promise made in May 2019.”
Adrian continued: “A good friend of our parishes, Aurelia Kelly, organised walks in Randalstown, Portglenone and Ahoghill in conjunction with Drummaul, Duneane and Ballyscullion parishes’ ME at 8 project. Aurelia was assisted by Amanda McCallion and Sarah Simpson from the Parishes of St Colmanell’s, Ahoghill & Portglenone, and the programme of walks was called Fit For ME, Fit For LIFE.
“In May 2019, members of our grouped parishes participated in the walks organised for the Fit For ME, Fit For LIFE programme and at the end of the last walk Aurelia enquired if we would like to help organise a fourth walk in May 2020 and our ladies readily agreed. Sadly, this was never to happen due to the outbreak of Covid and then the untimely and tragic passing of Aurelia in November 2021.”
Craigs, Dunaghy & Killagan’s first parish walk was held in Clough village on a beautiful June evening. The walkers enjoyed a good chat with fellow parishioners and viewed the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee display in St James’ Parish Church.
The following week the route followed the river walk in Cloughmills and back to the church for refreshments. Walkers commented on seeing a part of Cloughmills they didn’t know existed, and also learned about the work of the Cloughmills Community Action Team and their community food share scheme.
The last walk was in Cullybackey around the Craigs’ Parish Church area. Although the weather was not as kind as the previous two weeks, this did not dampen spirits, at the end of the walk everyone enjoyed refreshments in the grounds of the Rectory.
“The walks were selected to encourage everyone to get involved no matter their age or fitness level and we were also delighted to welcome along our four-legged furry friends as well each week,” said Adrian. “All our walkers have said how wonderful it was to be out and about in the fresh air and to get the opportunity to get to know others from across the three parishes. Plans are now afoot (pun intended) for 2023!”