Congratulations to Michael for 50 years of friendship and brotherhood

This morning, at the end of Circle’s Mass for Vocations which was held in St Philip Neri Church in Mansfield, we were finally able to celebrate Michael Kirk’s 50 years as a member of the Association.

During Mass, Fr John Kyne (himself a former Catenian before answering the call to the priesthood) spoke about the joy of welcoming the Catenians to his parish and about the vocation that each one of us has. It was with this backdrop that the presentation of Michael’s 50 year scroll by outgoing Province 15 Provincial President Karol Grabowski, of Mansfield and Dukeries Circle, was made even more poignant, remembering Michael’s service to the Catenians and to the wider life of the Catholic Church.

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Provincial President Karol Grabowski (l) presents the 50-year scroll to Michael Kirk (r)

Michael joined the Association on 28 November 1967 when the Circle was still quite new. At the time he was working as a Civil Engineer with the local council and became involved with the planning and delivery of the ring road system. He later worked for a time with Nottingham City Council on a variety of projects and, in his own words, “ended up working on sewers”. He retired from the profession in 1999 and has been kept busy with a variety of interests and demands since then.

He is a member of St Joseph’s Parish in Sutton in Ashfield, and it is his involvement in parish life which has kept him busy, especially since retirement. He has been a quiet and unassuming powerhouse in the parish, tending to the maintenance needs of the church fabric and negotiating repairs when necessary. As a member of the Parish Pastoral Council he has liaised with the various priests over the years, helping to support the scheduling of services and assisting with counting and the banking of weekly collections. Without this necessary backroom effort the parish would find things very difficult.

Michael has been President of the Circle on two occasions, in 1991/92 and 1994/95, and has also served as Circle Treasurer. He is a genuine, intelligent and lovely man who fully deserves this accolade as the most senior Catenian in our Circle.

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President of Mansfield Circle John Fitzpatrick (l), joins Michael Kirk (centre) and Provincial President Karol Grabowski (r) for a photo after Mass

After Mass a number of brothers and wives were able to join Michael and his wife, Margaret (who has not been very well since last summer) for a lunch at the Red Brick House, Edwinstowe where Michael and Margaret thanked everyone for their attendance, support and good wishes.

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