Tony Blair joins celebration to mark 101 years of Highbury Catholic church

Guests at St Joan of Arc centenary celebrations included Cllr Troy Gallagher, Cherie and Tony Blair and Cllr Una O'Halloran

St Joan Of Arc Church Highbury celebrated 101 years in the parish on 17.10.21. Guests included Mayor of Islington Troy Gallagher, Cherie and Tony Blair and Cllr Una O'Halloran - Credit: Polly Hancock

The Archbishop of Westminster and parishioners including former Prime Minister Tony Blair and his wife Cherie turned out for a celebratory mass to mark 101 years since the foundation of St Joan of Arc Catholic Parish on Sunday (October 17).

The church in Highbury Park was founded in 1920, and its centenary celebration last year was postponed because of the Covid pandemic.

Cardinal Vincent Nichols joined Mayor of Islington Troy Gallagher, his consort Cllr Una O’Halloran, and the representative Deputy Lieutenant for the Borough of Islington Michael Messinger, as well as nuns from the Sisters of Mercy.

Special guest His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols at the centenary celebrations of  St Joan Of Arc Church Highbury

Special guest His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols at the centenary celebrations of St Joan Of Arc Church Highbury - Credit: Polly Hancock

The family of Father McCarroll, who was priest at the parish for 32 years, travelled all the way down from Scotland to join them.

A spokesperson said: "It was a wonderful event - the mass was a great celebration and the party afterwards was a real community event." 

Father Gerard with His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols celebrating 101 years of St Joan Of Arc Church, Highbury

Father Gerard with His Eminence Cardinal Vincent Nichols celebrating 101 years of St Joan Of Arc Church, Highbury - Credit: Polly Hancock

Located next to St Joan of Arc RC Primary School, the parish has recorded tens of thousands baptisms, weddings and, inevitably, funerals since its inception as well as several ordinations and 10 parish priests. 

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