Fr Stephen McGrattan
met his new parishioners at Our Lady & St Cuthbert’s Church, Maybole at
the weekend for the first time. He told them, “Already it feels as if I am
entering a community which has life, or -better said- a community which is
very much alive. I look forward to praying, working and sharing our lives
together as I begin to serve in Maybole as your priest.” Fr Stephen
trained for the priesthood in the Royal Scots College, Salamanca and he
was ordained in his home parish of St Peter-in-Chains, Ardrossan on 6th
July 2003. After a temporary appointment at St Michael's Kilmarnock, Fr
Stephen was appointed the assistant priest at St Paul's Ayr before moving
to Maybole to succeed Fr Jim Hayes. Ayrshire Post. December 2004 .
Fr Jim had left a note for
I cannot begin to say how overwhelmed I have been for the many gifts,
cards, telephone calls and visitors to the door I have received full of
good wishes for my move to Saltcoats. In the last six years and three
months your love and support for me - even when we have sometimes
disagreed with each other - has been marvellous. Your faith, effort and
love of your Church and town community are an inspiration and as your
priest I was very proud to often hear the positive comments made about our
community from our visitors. The support we give to our young people and
children is a treasure that I urge you to continue and to our young people
and children I say, like any parent as your "Father" I wanted the very
best for you and Jesus is the best I could give - remain close to Him
always. One of the charms I shall miss about Maybole is the ability to be
straight talkers - no one ever missed their target - that only comes from
realising you have good, honest and solid relationships with each other -
never lose that!!
I must say a special word of
thanks to our brothers and sisters in the other Churches, to all at our
great wee primary school and of course to the wonderful PPC without whom
much would never have been even done - they have been a true source of
strength and support to me personally. Realising that only God is perfect,
my sincere apologies for any hurt I may have caused any of you. I hope you
may find it in your heart to forgive me. On my side I leave with lovely,
happy and wholesome memories of a community of faith that does itself
proud. I have no doubt that you will support your new pastor, Fr Stephen.
I know he will soon become a very good friend to you all.
God Bless you, one and all.